Fruity Delight

Fruity Delight

 

A really scrumptious dessert. A shortbread base is topped with a light, creamy cheese mixture, topped with glazed raspberries and strawberries and then dusted with icing sugar.

 

Fruity Delight
Prepares: 8 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 30 minutes
  • Standing time: 20 minutes
  • Cooking time: 15 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the base
  • 120g/4 oz plain flour/cake and pastry flour
  • 30g/1 oz icing sugar
  • 60g/2 oz butter, softened
  • 1 egg yolk

  • For the topping
  • 200g/7 oz full-fat soft cheese
  • 200ml crème fraîche
  • 2 tbsp icing sugar
  • a few drops of vanilla essence
  • 200g/7 oz strawberries, washed and hulled
  • 200g/7 oz raspberries, washed
  • 2 tbsp redcurrant jelly
  • icing sugar to dust


  1. Method
  2. For the base
  3. Sift the flour and icing sugar into a bowl. Mix in the butter using your fingertips until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Gradually add enough egg yolk a little at a time until the mixture starts to bind together. I find starting off using a small palette knife to bring the mixture together is helpful as it keeps the dough light. Once it is binding together, knead lightly to form a ball.

  4. Roll out the dough to a 20cm/8 inch round, then place on a baking sheet. Prick well with a fork, decorate the edges using the tines of the fork, then, using a knife, mark the pastry lightly into 8 equal sections.

  5. Chill, while preheating the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4.

  6. Bake the base for 15 minutes until just starting to brown. Re-mark the sections while it is still hot to make it easier for serving. Cool on a wire rack.

  7. For the topping
  8. Beat the soft cheese until it is creamy, then add the crème fraîche, icing sugar and vanilla essence. Beat until light and fluffy.

  9. Spread on the shortbread base, leaving a narrow border so that the decorative edge shows and the marked sections are still visible.

  10. If the strawberries are large, halve or quarter them. You want the raspberries and strawberries to be of a similar size. Cover the topping with the fruit.

  11. Put the redcurrant jelly in a small container and stir in 2 tablespoons of water. Microwave on medium for 30–60 seconds when the jelly should have dissolved and the mixture is bubbling. Leave to cool. Alternatively, heat in a small pan.

  12. Carefully brush the fruit with the jelly and then, just before serving, dust with icing sugar.

 

Hot Orange Chicken

Hot Orange Chicken

 

Chicken breasts are marinaded in a garlic, orange and wine sauce with wholegrain mustard and Tabasco to give it a kick. The marinading is well worthwhile as is produces succulent chicken breasts with lots of flavour.

 

Hot Orange Chicken
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 15 minutes
  • Marinading time: 24 hours and overnight
  • Cooking time: 20 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the marinade
  • 2 oranges, zest and juice
  • 60ml/2 fl oz dry white wine
  • 2 tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 2 tsp Tabasco sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, skin removed

  • 4 boned chicken breasts, skinned


  1. Method
  2. Put all the ingredients for the marinade into a jug or small bowl and stir well to combine. Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours.

  3. Prick the chicken with a fork and place in a single layer in a shallow dish so they fit snugly. Pour over the marinade, cover and refrigerate overnight.

  4. These can then be either grilled/broiled or barbecued.

  5. If using a grill/broiler, turn to a low heat then cook the chicken for 10 minutes on each side, basting each side well with the marinade.

  6. Serve with vegetables of your choice.

 

Salmon Fillets in a Tangy Sauce

My favourite fish was there at the fish counter – Wild Pacific Salmon. The best salmon there is.

We only have a chance to buy it fresh for such a short time, so I make the most of it while I can. This recipe is very quick and adding orange gives it a lovely tangy flavour.

 

Salmon Fillets in a Tangy Sauce

 

A delicious salmon dish that is just right for summer.

Salmon fillets are briefly marinated in an orange sauce and then grilled/broiled. They are served with buttery baby potatoes and a vinaigrette dressed salad.

 

Salmon Fillets in a Tangy Sauce
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 25 minutes
  • Marinading time: 10 minutes
  • Cooking time: 15 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 2 oranges
  • 3 tbsp vinaigrette salad dressing
  • 1 tbsp runny/liquid honey
  • 680g (1 lb 8 oz) salmon fillet, skinned and sliced into four pieces
  • 680g (1 lb 8 oz) baby potatoes, scrubbed
  • knob of butter

  • To serve
  • A green salad

  • You will also need a shallow, heatproof dish that will take the salmon in a single layer.


  1. Method
  2. Squeeze the juice from one of the oranges into a small bowl. It should yield 6 tablespoons of juice.

  3. Add the salad dressing and honey and whisk well to combine. Pour into the dish.

  4. Now lay the salmon fillets in the dish and spoon over the marinade. Leave for 10 minutes.

  5. Preheat the grill/broiler to low.

  6. Bring a little water to the boil in the base of a steamer and then steam the potatoes for 15 minutes, or until tender.

  7. Meanwhile, cut the second orange into 8 thin slices.

  8. Lay 1 slice on each piece of salmon. Make a single cut in the remaining 4 slices from the edge to the centre and put to one side.

  9. Place the salmon under the grill for 12–15 minutes until it is cooked through. (Don’t have the dish too close to the heat.) The juice from the orange slices will seep into the salmon.

  10. Now prepare the salad. Drizzle the salad with more of the vinaigrette dressing and toss.

  11. Drain the potatoes, add a good knob of butter to the pan, and toss to coat.

  12. Transfer the salmon pieces to 4 plates, discarding the orange pieces, and spoon over any juices remaining in the pan.

  13. Decorate each piece of salmon with the reserved orange slices, twisting them at the cut edge.

  14. Serve with the buttered baby potatoes and salad.

Updated: July 27, 2019

Steak Marinated in a Tomato and Herb Sauce

Steak Marinated in a Tomato and Herb Sauce

 

This was the first recipe I ever cooked where I made a marinade for steaks. I have updated the ingredients for the marinade and this really does make a delicious sauce to go with the steak.

 

Steak Marinated in a Tomato and Herb Sauce
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 10 minutes
  • Marinading time: 6 hours or overnight
  • Cooking time: 10 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 4 x 170g (6 oz) steaks
  • 225ml (8 fl oz) passata (1 cup)
  • 60ml (2 fl oz) cider vinegar (¼ cup)
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • fresh, oregano leaves
  • salt and freshly milled black pepper


  1. Method
  2. Trim any excess fat from the steaks and put in a glass or ceramic dish large enough to lay them in a single layer.

  3. Stir the rest of the ingredients in a bowl until well blended. Pour over the steaks. Then turn the steaks so they are coated with the marinade. Cover the dish and refrigerate for at least 6 hours, or overnight.

  4. Drain the steaks and pat dry. Reserve the marinade. They can now be BBQ’d or cooked in a little oil and butter in a frying pan/skillet.

  5. Once they are cooked to your liking, transfer to a plate, cover, and keep warm. Rest the steaks for 5 minutes, turning halfway through, for the juices to be absorbed back into the steak.

  6. Meanwhile, pour the reserved marinade in a small pan, stir and bring to the boil. (If the steaks were cooked in a frying pan/skillet use this.) Reduce the heat and simmer for a couple of minutes. A little water can be added if the sauce reduces too much.

  7. To serve, pour the sauce over the steaks and accompany with baked potatoes and seasonal vegetables.

Updated: June 25, 2019

Quick Raspberry Fool

Quick Raspberry Fool

 

All this recipe needs is fresh raspberries, honey and natural yogurt to make a refreshing summer fool.

 

Quick Raspberry Fool
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: less than 10 minutes
  • Cooking time: 2 minutes
  • Refrigeration time: 30 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 280–340g/10–12 oz fresh raspberries (2 punnets)
  • 1 tsp runny honey/clear honey
  • 1 x 500g carton natural yogurt


  1. Method
  2. Reserve four raspberries and then cook the rest gently in a small pan with the honey until the fruit juices just start to run. This will only take a couple of minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to cool.

  3. Pour the yogurt into a bowl and very carefully fold in the raspberries. The juice will be absorbed into the yogurt to turn it a pale raspberry colour. Chill for 30 minutes in the fridge.

  4. Divide between four fancy glass dishes and top with the reserved raspberries.