Rosewater Honeycomb with dark chocolate and lavender flower

Honeycomb1_lefermier_221115Honeycomb is a fun and simple Amuse-Bouche that is full of flavour, light and delicious . It is also a great addition to many dessert recipes like waffles, ice cream or sprinkled on top of a berry crumble. Perfect little treat to go with your coffee and tea at the end of you meal or you can also package them to give them as presents to your friend or family!!!

Ingredients:

  • 300g caster sugar
  • 1 cup water, about 250ml
  • 3 tablespoon baking soda
  • 200g dark chocolate
  • Dried lavender flower, or dried edible flowers
  • 20ml rosewater

Honeycomb3_lefermier_221115Method:

  1. Line a deep stainless steel bowl with baking paper.
  2. Place the sugar and water into a saucepan and stir to dissolve the sugar. Clean the side of the saucepan with a pastry brush and a little bit of water, to prevent the sugar from crystallising.
  3. Bring the sugar to the boil and cook it until it become slightly brown, you only want a pale caramel.
  4. Take it of the heat, put the saucepan next to the stainless steel bowl, and pour the baking soda in the caramel while whisking very quickly , Do not whisk for too long, only a few seconds. Once you add the baking soda it will rise very quickly a little like a volcano!
  5. Pour the honeycomb in the bowl as soon as you stop whisking and leave to cool down completely. It should  become hard pretty quickly.
  6. In the meantime, break down the chocolate in a stainless steel bowl and melt it over a bain-marie.
  7. Break the honeycomb into big chunks, dip half of them into the chocolate and the flowers. Leave the chocolate cool down so it hardens and they are ready to be served!

 

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Waffles Liègeoise

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Waffles Liègeoise. NOT to be confused with Belgian waffles or the numerous other variations that exist. The Liège variety is slightly sweeter (thanks to the chunky pearl sugar unique to its recipe), has a chewier texture and is a little denser than your stereotypical waffle.

Waffles are making a bit of a comeback on the food scene, and possibly not for the first time, considering how long they’ve been around. The waffle has existed in some form since the early Middle Ages in Europe, starting as a simple wafer made in decorative iron clamps and eventually becoming the sweet breakfast icon that it is today. The original recipes have been evolved along the way as people added levening agents like yeast, sugar and a key ingredient in Liège waffles, butter (this is literally not a dish for the faint hearted!). You can find the pearl sugar from Essential ingredients shop or online at: http://www.essentialingredient.com.au.

With this dish I recommend a Chateau Viranel “ Gourmandise” , Wich is a fortified red wine from the Languedoc region in France, available from www.airoldifinewines.com.au

But that’s enough waffling on from me (I know, I should be ashamed of myself, ha)…Bon Appétit!

Ingredients:

  • 1 kg bakers flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 75g fresh yeast or 25g dry yeast.
  • 500 ml warm milk
  • 500 hail sugar (pearl sugar)
  • 100 ml honey
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla essence
  • 1 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 500g melted butter

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Method:

  1. Dilute the yeast with a little bit of the water. If you are using dry yeast you’ll need to leave it to activate for about 10 minutes or until it starts to bubble on top.
  2. Put half the flour, the milk and the yeast in a mixing bowl and stir the mix until well combined. Leave to proof, covered with a teatowel for 20 minutes in a warm place. This is known as a starter.
  3. Meanwhile,  combine the rest of the ingredients together except the hail sugar. Add the ingredients to the starter and knead well for about 5 minutes. Then add the hail sugar and knead until the sugar is well incorporated.
  4. Portion the dough in 150g balls. You can cook them straight away or leave them in the fridge for a few hours. If you leave them in the fridge you’ll need to take them out about 20 minutes to warm up before cooking.
  5. Cooking time will depend on the waffle iron you have at home, but as a guide it should normally take about 8 minutes per waffle.
  6. Plate the waffle on a dessert plate or a sharing tray, drizzle the chocolate sauce over the top, arrange the orange segment around it and the Chantilly cream on top!

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Chocolate and orange sauce:

  • 150 g dark chocolate
  • 300 ml thickened cream
  • 2 orange zest

Method:

  1. Bring the cream and orange zest to the boil.
  2. Once boiled pour it over the chocolate and leave for a couple of minutes to rest to allow the chocolate to melt. Give a quick whisk and keep aside.

Chantilly cream:

  • 500ml thickened cream (full fat)
  • 50g icing sugar

Method :

  1. Pour the cream and the icing sugar in a mixing bowl and whisk with an electric mixer starting on a low speed and slowly increase the speed until the cream holds its shape. A good way to know is to tip the bowl upside down, if the cream stays in the bowl, it’s ready!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pain d’épices

 

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Pain d’épices was originally a sourdough bread without added leavening; it was left in a wooden trough to rest in a cool place for months, during which the honeyed rye flour experienced fermentation. When ready the dough was cooked in loaf moulds. The modern product usually rises with baking soda, or with baking powder, developed in the nineteenth century.

Because traditional pain d’épices is sweetened entirely with honey, honey merchants in France often stock loaves of it for sale. La Collective des Biscuits et Gâteaux de France reserves the name pain d’épices pur miel (French for: “pure honey spice bread”) for pain d’épices sweetened only with honey

 

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Pain d’épices :

Ingredients :

  • 500 g flour
  • 250 g honey
  • 250 g caster sugar
  • 400 ml milk
  • 2 whole egg
  • 4 yolk (in total)
  • 4 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon bi carb soda
  • 4 tea spoon cinnamon powder
  • 2 teaspoon ginger powder
  • 2 cloves (grounded)
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 140 g melted butter

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Place flour, spices, baking powder and bi carb soda in a bowl• In a different bowl place the honey and sugar, warm up your milk and add it to the honey, whisk the until dissolve• Stir the flour mixture, then add the honey and milk mixture, whisked eggs and butter• Whisk vigorously until all the ingredient are well mixed.  Line the cake mould with grease proof paper then pour the mixture in a rectangle cake mould, and bake for 1 hour at 190 degree Celsius.

 

 

 

 

 

hot jam doughnuts filled with chocolate ganache and sour cheery jam

Hot jam doughnuts :

250 g strong white bread flour

50 chilled unsalted butter, diced

7 g dried yeast or 21 g fresh yeast

4 Tbsp caster sugar

1 medium free range eggs

100 ml whole milk ( lukewarm)

Sunflower oil for deep frying

Method : Sift the flour and a pinch of salt into a large salt, then rub in the  butter with your fingertips. Mix the yeast and a 1/3 of the lukewarm milk and 1 tbsp of sugar then stir through the flour. Make a well in the centre, mix the rest of the lukewarm milk and the eggs and pour into the well. Mix quickly  and bring together into a soft dough.

Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for 8 minutes or until smooth. Put in a lightly greased bowl and cover with cling film or a lightly wet towel and leave in a warm place for an hour or until double in size.

Divide the dough into 12 evenly size balls, and shape them into smooth balls using the palm of your hands. Place them well apart  on a baking tray lined with baking paper then loosely cover them with a greased piece of cling film. Leave for 45 minutes or until doubled in size.

Heat the sunflower oil to 190 degrees. Carefully lower the doughnuts into the oil using a slotted spoon, in batches of 2 or 3. Fry for 30 seconds each side until golden and cooked through. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain a kitchen paper.

While the doughnuts are still warm, make a whole on the side of the doughnuts and pipe the ganache in the doughnuts. Use the cherry jam a dipping sauce.

Roll the doughnuts in the remaining caster sugar to coat them completely. Serve warm or allow to cool.

For the ganache:

300 ml thickened cream

300 g dark chocolate

Method: Boil the cream and pour it over the chocolate, leave for a few minutes, whisk and leave to cool.

For the cherry jam:

1 jar sour cherries

1 orange peel

1 teaspoon cinnamon.

Method:

Cook the cherries with the orange peels and cinnamon for about 15 minutes then blend and pass it through a thieve.

Grand Marnier and Orange Crème Brulée

creme brulee blog photo 5   Orange and Grand Marnier Crème Brulee: The  Crème Brulée  was  born in the XVII  century. During this period dishes were served to guests in  three different service , by the time all the quest received their meals it would be cold. During a dinner organized by Phillip D’orleans, he complained that his “ Crème”  was too cold. They had the idea to apply a hot iron on top to warm up the cream. Instead it caramelised the top without warming up the cream, the “ Crème Brulée “ was born.     creme brulee blog photo 2

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Recipe:

18 yolk

350 g sugar

orange zest

20 ml Grand Marnier

1.2 litres cream

Method: Boil the cream and orange zest , whisk egg yolks and sugar together• Pour the cream in the egg and sugar mix and whisk, then pour the mix back in the pot• Wash your bowl and dry it with a clean towel• Cook the Crème on a medium heat stirring it with a wooden spoon and whisking it from time to time.  Using a thermometer cook the Crème until about 80 degrees, you should see a swirl of fat forming at the top• Pour the cream back into the cleaned bowl and whisk for a few minutes until it cools down a little bit. Place an orange segment at the bottom of your  Crème brulée dish and pour the crème over,  put the crème  in the fridge overnight or until set• To caramelised it, sprinkle a thin layer of caster or raw sugar over the top, and caramelise it with a small blow torch or a Crème Brulée iron•   Can also be served with some almond tuiles •

grand marnier photo blog

Hot cross buns Easter treats

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Hot cross buns what a delicious Easter treat.  A great idea to keep the “ little one(s)” busy for a while during the Easter holidays, great fun to make  and you also get to eat it later with some jam and butter or nutella even, or by itself. Every country as its own version of Easter treat, I will show you and give you the recipe of course of the version I grew up with. Check out my blog for the recipe.

 

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 Mix 1 teaspoon of the sugar and 150 ml warm water in a jug until frothy• Sift the flour, 1 teaspoon of salt and the mixed spiced into a large bowl, then add the dried fruit, peel, orange zest and remaining sugar• Make a well in the middle and pour in the yeast mixture, then add the beaten egg, melted butter and 40 ml warm milk• Using a wooden spoon or your kitchenAid mix until you have a dough• You can add a little milk if it’s too dry.

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 Place the dough on a clean surface and knead until smooth and glossy, about 5 minutes• place the dough in a large mixing bowl and cover with a clean, damp tea towel• Leave in a warm place to prove until double in size, then knock it back and knead it back to its original size• Divide the dough into evenly sized pieces and shape into round buns• Place on a lightly greased baking tray, spaced well apart• Cover with a clean damp tea towel and leave to rise again until double in size, about 35-40 minutes.

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Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 220 degrees Celsius, gas 7• For the decoration mix a little bit of flour with water, just enough to get a jam like consistency, pour the mixture into a pipping bag• Brush your buns with the beaten egg and draw the cross on your buns, bake for about 15 minutes or until golden• Meanwhile for the glaze, place the sugar and juice and gently heat until the sugar is dissolved and the syrup is bubbling• Brush the buns with the glazed as soon as they come out of the oven and eat , they can also be enjoyed toasted later.

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