Well it seems that Miss P has been having such a fun Summer that I've fully neglected my blog! That's not to say that I haven't been busy in my kitchen though. So I'm getting back into the blogging game by bringing you two winning recipes that you'll thank me for.
My boyfriend and I recently had a wonderful holiday in Croatia -the sickeningly romantic kind where you gaze into each others eyes at sunset and whisper all kinds of promises...one of which was that when we came home I would cook him steak, potato dauphinoise and green beans. I guess that's a very specific sweet nothing to whisper, but I'm a woman of my word, so come payday we indulged massively.
Now potato dauphinoise seems like one of those French classics that you couldn't re-enact at home, but actually it's incredibly simple. Here's my recipe:
Makes enough to serve 4
Pre-heat the oven to 180ºC
Peel and thinly slice 5-6 medium sized potatoes.
Layer the bottom of a 9" x 7" baking dish with some of the slices.
Season with salt and pepper, sprinkle over one finely chopped garlic clove, and pour over 100 ml double cream.
Repeat this process with another layer of potatoes, seasoning, garlic and cream.
Add the final layer of potatoes, seasoning (no garlic this time) and a final drizzle of cream. You won't need as much as 100ml at this final stage, so use about 50ml.
Top with finely grated Parmesan if you have it. If you don't, you can add a few knobs of butter to the top of the final potatoes. Yes, this is a massive dairy overload, but you'll have to just accept that!
Cook in the oven for approx 45 minutes, until the top is golden and crisp.
Serve, and prepare to recieve a whole lot of gratitude from your diners!
So I'm going to hit you up with another winning recipe, but unfortunately I can't take the credit for this one. This recipe for "chocolate lava cakes" (or chocolate fondants) is from Marian Keyes' wonderful baking book "Saved By Cake". The book is full of tempting recipes but this was the first one I'd tried - it was a big success so now I can't wait to try more of them.
170 g chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
170g butter, cut into cubes
85g caster sugar
85g plain flour
Good quality vanilla ice cream
Get four 250ml ramekins and, as Marian says, "butter the living daylights out of them". If you want to flip these babies out hassle free, then heed her advice!
Pre-heat the oven to 180ºC/Gas 4.
Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water. Add the diced butter and stir until it is all melted.
In a seperate bowl, beat the eggs and sugar together until pale and fluffy.
Sieve in the flour and gently fold it through. Don't beat it or you'll knock all the air out!
Place the ramekins on a baking tray, and put in the oven.
Now here's the tricky part - timing. Marian suggest 10 minutes if you like them really runny, 12 if you like them a little firmer. After 12 minutes mine looked still too runny so I left them in for 15..they did have a lovely gooey centre, but I think I would have preffered more of it, so next time I would give them 12-13 minutes. A minute can make a big difference in baking!
Stand the ramekins on a cool surface for 5 minutes. Loosen the edges with a knife, then boldly flip them onto your prettiest plate, and serve with ice cream.
Top tip - don't make them late at night like we did...although midnight baking sessions seem like a fun idea at the time, we couldn't finish our little beauties and went to bed obscenely full!
I hope these recipes will help you forgive my long abscence! Lots of love, Miss P x