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Friday, 24 April 2015

Recipe: Salted Caramel Peanut Butter Lollipops (like Rees’s Pieces only better!)


Christmas just passed I was asked to make a belated Christmas dinner for friends which I was only to glad to help with. I got a rather inexperienced volunteer helper, and rather than waste the offer I gave him this recipe to follow. He did a very good job to be fair!

Technically these will last a month in the fridge. Practically, unless they’re under guard, they might last a day maybe 2!
Needles to say you can prepare them in advance. (Along with your will of steel)

The results were stunning!!! : )




ingredients (makes ~24)
for the centre
340g smooth peanut butter (1 jar)
397g caramel (1 tin)
couple of pinches of salt flakes

for the coating
300g dark chocolate

apparatus / equipment
1 pack toothpicks
bain marie

method
Mix the peanut butter, caramel and salt. Adjust the salt to your taste.
Once it’s perfect line a freezer proof tray (not glass) with cling film and put the mix into it.
Spread it out to create a layer about an inch thick. 
Cover the top with another layer of cling film, and put it into the freezer for 60mins to set.

Once set remove from the freezer, unwrap and cut into pieces 1 inch cubed.

Put a layer of cling film onto your original tray.
Working quickly roll each cube into a ball, push a cocktail stick into it and pop it onto the tray.
Once they’re all done put them back into the freezer until you need them. (Another 60 mins preferably)


to coat
Put the chocolate into a small pyrex (heat proof) bowl. 
Put this over the top of a pan of simmering water, with the bottom of the bowl not touching the water.
Leave until the chocolate has completely melted. (Make sure the water doesn’t boil dry)
Once the chocolate is ready remove the spheres of loveliness from the freezer.
One by one, dip the ball into the chocolate coating completely, and letting the excess drip off.
Place the coated ball onto a tray lined with cling film or greaseproof paper, and leave it to set.


thinking ahead
As I mentioned, technically these will last a month in the fridge. Practically, unless they’re under guard, they might last the day maybe 2! Needles to say you can prepare them in advance. (Along with your will of steel!!)


variations
Why not try it with white chocolate!! 

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Recipe: Zero Fat Salmon & Pork Wontan Soup


A friend of mine came round to lend a hand with hanging a door, a bit of sawing cutting varnishing that kind of thing. As a thanks for lending a hand I knocked this recipe up for a late lunch. I’m not gonna lie, it would have gone down exceptionally well accompanied by an ice cold beer! Unfortunately no beer allowed today - booooo! - watching that there waistline : /

Not bad for a bit of lunch - to be fair we'd earned it!!

Salmon is optional!! : )

Cucumber noodles
This recipe is a great recipe because you can have it with carbs or as a carb-less cucumber version!! Aye! So really good if you’re cooking for others while watching your own intake. Oh the sneakiness!! : )

It’s also quick and simplicity to make!

ingredients (serves 2 hungry people)
for the noodle soup
500g fresh noodles
1 chicken stock cube
1 tsp yellow bean paste (soya bean paste)
1L boiling water
1 medium red onion (finely sliced)
2 small green chillies (cut into rings, keep seeds)
1tbsp fish sauce (season to taste)

for the pork wontans
10 pork wontans (recipe post coming soon)

for the cucumber noodles
Mint & Sweet Basil
1/3 cucumber (mandolin to noodles)
1 tsp soy

for the salmon
300g salmon (cut into 2 pieces)
olive oil
salt

Ready for action!!
for the topping ~ garnish
2 tbsp cucumber noodles
10g sweet basil (stalks removed, torn)
10g mint (stalks removed, torn)
10g coriander (stalks removed, torn)
2 spring onions (cut into strips and then thirds)
~
2 spring onions (fine sliced into rings)
sweet basil (picked)
crispy fried onion
1 lime (sliced into 1/4’s)

apparatus / equipment
mandolin


method
for the noodle soup
Put the yellow bean paste and chicken stock cube in a pot, dissolve in the boiling water.
Add the green chillies, 1/2 of the red onion and the wontans, bring to the boil then set to simmer.
Add the spring onions just before serving. (or to the noodles, either will do)

for the cucumber noodles
Run the cucumber through the mandolin. Add a touch of soy if you fancy it!
Simple and fast! WARNING: Be so sooo careful with your fingers on the mandolin!!

Cook it 90% skin side down!! (Don't forget to de-scale it!)
for the salmon
I like my salmon ‘mit cuit’ but that’s a lot of ****ing about for lunch, so a nice quick alternative is to literally half cook it!
Quickly sear the remaining sides
Pat the salmon dry and coat it in olive oil. Salt the skin side to give a really nice crispy skin, and put it into pan on a medium high heat, skin side down. Leave it for 5mins until crisp and golden. the sear the remaining sides to finish. The centre should warm and still pink! If you’re using the skirt of the salmon, which is a lot thinner and fattier (and really nice) use a hot pan on a high heat for a shorter time.

for the pork wontons
I grabbed these out of the freezer!! I’ll put up a post on how to make them soon!

to serve
Unpack the noodles then loosen them and put them in a bowl. Microwave them so the broth stays warm when you pour it in.
Dress the noodles with herbs, cucumber noodles, spring onion and the red onion and pour in the broth. Sprinkle with round spring onion slices, crispy fried onion and chillies. Pop the salmon on top and serve with a slice of lime.


variations
If you’re making the cucumber noodle version replace 250g noodles with 2/3 of a cucumber that’s been sliced into noodles!

How To Book / Attend

How To Book / Attend
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More Techniques, Basics and Corker Recipes

More Techniques, Basics and Corker Recipes
If there's something you've tried at ferdiesfoodlab or a technique you want to know about drop us a line at bookings@ferdiesfoodlab.co.uk and I'll put up a post about it!!

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