Blanquet de Veau

Ingredients

  • 500 g shoulder of veal/beef
  • 500 g belly of pork
  • 1 leek
  • 1 celery stick
  • 3 carrots (battoned)
  • 2 onions
  • 150 g white mushrooms (sliced)
  • Tablespoon of flour
  • 80 g butter
  • 200 g crème fraiche/double cream
  • 1 bouquet garni
  • 50g rice

Method

We start in the traditional manner, the stock made tasty with the use of lots of vegetables, leeks, celery, carrots and onions and they all go into a pot of cold water, with the meat cut into quite big chunks.

Add a bouquet garni, put the lid on, bring it to the boil and then let it simmer for about an hour-and-a-half. After that we strain off the lovely tasty stock, which is going to be the base for our sauce.

Separate out the meat and the carrots from the rest of the ingredients of the stock. Hold the meat and carrots but discard the rest of the vegetables.

The meat will be lovely and soft and melting and you need to cover it at this stage to stop it drying out.

Now we put the stock back on the heat to reduce, simmer away for about five minutes.

Make a roux, which is equal quantities of flour and butter cooked in a separate pan.

When you've made the roux, you slowly pour the veal stock into it, stirring carefully to make sure there are no lumps.

Simmer it a little so that it thickens and to finish off the sauce, you put some cream in there.

So, to serve blanquette de veau, we put cooked rice into individual serving dishes and put a layer of poached carrots on top and a layer of veal on top of that.

The advantage of this is that the meal can be prepared in advance and just heated up in the oven before serving. If you are doing that, keep back a little of the stock before you make the sauce, so that it can be poured over the pots to keep them moist when they go into the oven.

Then fry a few mushrooms until they are golden brown and place them on top.

Pork Homemade Brown Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1.6 kg loin of pork
  • 1 eating apple (sliced)
  • 1 cooking apple (sliced)
  • 1 onion (sliced)
  • 8-10 prunes
  • fennel seeds

Method

Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.

In a large roasting tin make a trivet: line the bottom of the roasting tin with, onion, prunes, the thickly sliced fennel, sliced cooking and eating apples.

Sprinkle fennel seeds, sage and sugar over the prunes and apples, season.

Score the top of the pork, and lay it on the trivet.

Randomly tuck some sage leaves into the scored skin of the pork.

Sprinkle with sugar and salt, more sugar than salt.

Put the pork into the preheated oven to cook.

Allow the meat approximately 20 minutes per 450g at 180°C and 10 minutes resting time.

Remove the meat from the roasting tin and allow to rest for 10-15 minutes.

The cooking time may vary depending on the type of oven and the size of the loin of pork.

To check if the meat is cooked stick a skewer into the meat and the juices should run clear.

Make the brown sauce

Spoon some of the trivet into a liquidiser and whizz it.

The consistency should be quite chunky and thick.

Check seasoning and add a little red wine vinegar if you like to tart it up a little

Family Bread Pudding (Served with roast chicken)

Ingredients

  • 100 g unsalted butter (softened)
  • 1 tblsp vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, (finely sliced)
  • 600 ml milk
  • 1 small bay leaf
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 1 garlic clove (peeled and crushed)
  • 2 whole cloves
  • grated zest of lemon
  • freshly grated nutmeg
  • 8 slices white bread (crusts removed and each slice cut into 4 triangles)
  • 2 eggs and 2 egg yolks

Method

Brush the inside of a 1.5l baking dish with a third of the softened butter and pop in the fridge to set.

Heat the oil in a medium pan and sauté the onion until soft but not coloured.

Add the milk, bay leaf, thyme, garlic, cloves, lemon zest, a little nutmeg and seasoning and heat until bubbles form around the edge of the pan.

Remove from the heat and set aside to infuse and cool slightly for a few minutes.

Meanwhile, generously spread the bread quarters with another third of the butter.

Arrange the bread in the prepared baking dish.

Beat the eggs lightly in a medium bowl and strain all but 50ml (2 fl oz) of the infused milk over, reserving the onion and bay leaf.

Scatter the reserved onions over and between the bread slices. Pour the milk and egg mixture over the bread, top with the reserved bay leaf and dot with knobs of the remaining butter.

Leave to soak for about 20 minutes.

Set the bread pudding bowl in another roasting tin and pour boiling water into the tin to come half way up the side of the dish.

Bake for 30 minutes until golden on top and just set.

'Mostarda di frutta'

Ingredients

  • 250ml water
  • 400g dark brown sugar
  • 100ml cider vinegar
  • piece of cinnamon
  • 3-4 cloves
  • 30g dry mustard powder
  • peel of one lemon
  • 50g dried cranberries
  • 200g mixed peel
  • 400g dried fruits in small pieces; figs, dates, apricots, pears...

Method

Mix all the ingredients in a pot and cook on a low heat for 20 minutes with the lid on.

Spoon the mixture into sterilised jars and seal while hot. Invert the jars until cool. Store in a cool dry place.Serve Mustard Fruits with ham or cold meats. Refrigerate after opening.

Mint sauce recipe

Ingredients

  • Big bunch of chopped mint
  • 2 tbsp white sugar
  • 2 tbsp malt vinegar

Method

Remove the leaves from the stalks, chop very finely and put in a small serving jug.

Put the sugar and vinegar into a small pot and boil for one minute.

Allow cool and then pour the vinegar over the chopped mint. Stir well before serving.