Cheat’s Crêpes Suzette

Cheat's Crêpes Suzette

 

I call these Cheat’s Crêpes Suzette because they aren’t flambéed just before serving. The crêpes with orange segments in orange sauce flavoured with Cointreau still make them sublime. (To flambé them, just follow the last steps of the method.)

 

Cheat's Crêpes Suzette
Prepares: 4–6 servings
 
  • Preparation time: About 30 minutes
  • Standing time: 20 minutes
  • Cooking time: About 25 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the crêpes
  • 115g (4 oz) plain/all-purpose flour (1 cup less 2 tbsp)
  • pinch salt
  • 2 eggs, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.)
  • 240ml (8 fl oz) semi-skimmed/2% milk (1 cup) mixed with 60ml (2 fl oz) water (¼ cup)
  • 55g (2 oz) butter (¼ cup, or ½ stick)

  • For the orange sauce
  • 55g (2 oz) icing/powdered sugar (½ cup)
  • 3 small oranges
  • 85g (3 oz) butter (3 tbsp, or ³⁄₈ stick)
  • 1 tbsp Grand Marnier or Cointreau

  • You will also need a 25cm (10 inch) heavy gauge aluminium frying pan/skillet.


  1. Method
  2. Sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl.

  3. Make a well in the centre of the flour and break in the eggs. Using an electric whisk or a balloon whisk, whisk the eggs into the flour, gradually adding the milk and incorporating the flour from around the edge of the bowl. Scrape any remaining flour down from the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula and whisk again until all the mixture is smooth. It should be the consistency of thin cream. Set aside for 20 minutes.

  4. Meanwhile prepare the sauce. Squeeze the juice from one orange into a small pan and add the icing sugar. Stir to dissolve and then add the butter. Gently heat to melt the butter and then simmer for 2 minutes. The mixture will thicken slightly. Set the pan to one side.

  5. Then zest the two remaining oranges and put the zest to one side.

  6. Now remove all the pith from the 2 oranges, separate into their segments and remove any pips. Cut each segment in half.

  7. Preheat oven to 150°C (300°F) (gas 2) and place five plates in the oven to warm.

  8. To prepare for cooking the crêpes: Melt the butter in the pan/skillet. Spoon 2 tablespoons into the batter and whisk it in. Pour the remainder into a small bowl and use it to smear the pan/skillet between cooking each pancake using a wodge of kitchen paper.

  9. Get the pan really hot, then turn the heat down to a medium–hot setting.

  10. Use about 3 tablespoons of batter for each crêpe. It is easier to measure this into a ladle or measuring cup first and use this to tip the batter into the pan/skillet in one go. Using the ladle or cup, hold it so that the base is very close to the bottom of the pan/skillet in the centre and then pour it in. As soon as the batter hits the hot pan/skillet, lift the pan/skillet and tip it around from side to side to get the base evenly coated with the batter. If there are any holes, just fill them in with extra batter using a teaspoon. It will take less than a minute to cook. Lift the edge with a palette knife to check the underside is golden.

  11. Now flip the crêpe over. The other side will need less time to cook. Then slide it out of the pan onto a warmed plate.

  12. Continue until there are 12 crêpes. Overlap them on the warmed plate as you go, keeping them warm in the oven, covered loosely with foil.

  13. Pour the sauce into the pan/skillet and warm through. Add the zest and 1 tablespoon of the liqueur.

  14. Then fold the crêpes into quarters, placing a few orange segments in each one. Add the crêpes to the pan along with any remaining orange segments.

  15. Cook for 2 minutes to heat the crêpes through.

  16. Note
  17. If you want to flambé the crêpes just follow the steps below.

  18. To flambé the crêpes
  19. This is done just before serving the crêpes. First mix together 3 tablespoons of Grand Marnier and 3 tablespoons of brandy. Then pour them into the pan and set the sauce alight. This has to be done very quickly or the alcohol will evaporate and won’t light. Carefully swirl the pan around so that the sauce flames evenly. Serve when the flames have extinguished. Be very careful when doing this.

Updated: February 25, 2019

Sweet Mustard Pork

Sweet Mustard Pork

 

Succulent pork tenderloin marinaded in a sweet mustard sauce and then roasted.

 

Sweet Mustard Pork
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: about 30 minutes
  • Marinading time: at least 30 minutes, overnight if possible
  • Cooking time: 10 minutes hob, 30 minutes oven

  • Ingredients
  • 450g (1 lb) pork fillet/tenderloin
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 4 tsp wholegrain mustard
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • Vegetables to serve
  • roasted, diced potatoes and carrots
  • peas

  • You will also need 2 small roasting tins/pans.


  1. Method
  2. For the mustard pork
  3. Mix together the maple syrup, mustard, garlic, oil, and seasoning. Then pour into a shallow dish. Now add the pork and turn to coat in the marinade. Cover and refrigerate for at at least 30 minutes; overnight if possible.

  4. Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) (gas 6).

  5. Remove the pork from the fridge to bring it up to room temperature.

  6. Meanwhile prepare the vegetables. Parboil a few potatoes and carrots for 7 minutes. Drain and leave for a few minutes until cool enough to handle. Then chop, put in a bowl and toss with a little olive oil.

  7. The vegetables and pork are roasted at the same time. So tip the vegetables into a small roasting tin/pan along with the olive oil and roast for about 30 minutes until they start to brown and crisp.

  8. Transfer the pork to the second tin/pan and pour over the marinade. Cover with foil and roast in the oven for 15 minutes. Then remove the foil and continue cooking for a further 10 minutes, or until the pork is cooked through and the juices run clear when tested with a skewer.

  9. Slice the pork and pour over the sticky pan juices. Serve with the roasted vegetables and accompany with peas.

Updated: February 20, 2019

Angie’s Potato Salad

Angie's Potato Salad

 

I have been making this potato salad for many years and it has now become a great family favourite. Cubed cooked potatoes and quartered boiled eggs are added to a seasoned mayonnaise which also incorporates diced celery, sliced green onions, and chopped parsley. It is a great addition to any salad or as an accompaniment to cold meats.

 

Angie's Potato Salad
Prepares: 6–8 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 20 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 900g (2 lb) waxy potatoes (about 6 medium)
  • 3 eggs
  • 240ml (8 fl oz) mayonnaise (1 cup)
  • 1 tbsp cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • ½ tsp celery seed
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 celery stick, diced
  • 3 spring/green onions, thinly sliced (¼ cup)
  • 2 tbsp flat leaf/Italian parsley, chopped

  • You will also need a large serving bowl.


  1. Method
  2. Peel and cut the potatoes into even-sized chunks. Simmer in a pan of boiled, salted water for 20 minutes until just tender.

  3. The eggs need to be hard boiled, so add them to the pan with the potatoes after they have been cooking for 10 minutes and that way a second pan can be avoided being used.

  4. Once the potatoes and eggs are cooked, lift the eggs from the pan and pop them in a bowl of cold water to keep the yolks golden.

  5. Drain the potatoes, leave to steam dry and become cool.

  6. Meanwhile, in the serving bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, cider vinegar, mustard, celery seed, salt, diced celery, sliced onions, and the chopped parsley.

  7. Now cut the potatoes into roughly 1 inch cubes and add to the bowl. Gently stir them into the mayonnaise mixture so they are well coated.

  8. Finally remove the shells from the eggs and cut each one into four. Carefully add half of them to the potato salad and then decorate the top with the remaining quarters.

  9. Refrigerate until needed.

 

Floating Islands with Spun Sugar

Floating Islands with Spun Sugar

 

I saw Mary Berry create this recipe for floating islands on the Great British Bake Off Masterclass. I have always sprinkled cocoa powder over the meringue eggs (see here) but would certainly recommend this for a change.

 

Floating Islands with Spun Sugar
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 40 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the crème anglaise
  • 240ml (8 fl oz) full fat/whole milk (1 cup)
  • 180ml (7 fl oz) double cream/heavy cream (¾ cup)
  • ½ tsp vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
  • 4 eggs, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.), yolks only (reserve 3 egg whites for the meringue)
  • 85g (3 oz) caster/superfine sugar (⅓ cup)

  • For the meringues
  • 3 eggs, whites only (reserved from the crème anglaise)
  • 85g (3 oz) caster/superfine sugar (⅓ cup)

  • For the spun sugar
  • 115g (4 oz) caster/superfine sugar (½ cup)

  • You will also need a deep sided sauté or frying pan/skillet with lid and four shallow dessert bowls.


  1. Method
  2. For the spun sugar
  3. Melt the sugar, without stirring, in a small stainless steel pan over a medium heat. Meanwhile, cover a rolling pin with parchment. When the sugar turns a deep golden-brown remove the pan from the heat. Leave to cool slightly, about 30 seconds, then, using the back of a fork or a whisk, quickly flick the caramel backwards and forwards over the rolling pin. (Take care as the sugar will still be very hot.) Gather the strands into a rough ball shape while gently pulling upwards and place on a clean sheet of parchment paper.

  4. For the poaching liquid
  5. This will become the crème anglaise. Pour the milk and cream in the sauté or frying pan/skillet and stir in the vanilla. Then bring to a simmer over a low heat while making the meringue.

  6. For the meringues
  7. In a large grease-free bowl, using an electric hand whisk on fast speed, whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form (or use the whisk attachment on a food mixer). Now gradually whisk in the sugar, one tablespoon at a time, until stiff peaks form and the meringue is thick and glossy. 


  8. Have a glass or jug of water to hand. Then using two large tablespoons or serving spoons, shape large eggs from the meringue mixture, dipping the spoons in the water to help shape them and keep them smooth. The meringue should make 4 very large eggs. Place the meringue eggs in the poaching liquid as you form them. Cover the pan and, over a very low heat, poach the meringue eggs for about 8–9 minutes, flipping them halfway through. Make sure the poaching liquid doesn’t boil or the meringues will puff up and then collapse. Using a slotted spoon, transfer them to a wire rack covered with paper towel to drain. 


  9. For the crème anglaise
  10. Strain the poaching milk through a sieve into a large jug. 


  11. In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until pale and fluffy, about 2–3 minutes. Pour over the warm poaching milk, whisking continuously. Then pour the mixture into a clean heavy-based pan and cook over a very low heat for 3–4 minutes, stirring continuously, until smooth and thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from the heat.

  12. To serve
  13. Divide the crème anglaise amongst the dessert bowls and then float a meringue egg on top.

    Decorate with a ball of spun sugar.

Teriyaki Steak

Teriyaki Steak

 

Slices of steak are marinated in a teriyaki sauce and then sautéed with mushrooms and tomatoes. Serving on a bed of flavoured brown rice for a very tasty dish.

 

Teriyaki Steak
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 40 minutes
  • Marinading time: 1–2 hours
  • Cooking time: 50 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 575g (1 lb 4 oz) sirloin or rump steak, fat removed
  • 4 tbsp medium-dry sherry
  • 6 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar/superfine sugar
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 225g (8 oz) button mushrooms, sliced (3 cups)
  • 1 tsp cornflour/cornstarch

  • For the rice
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
  • 200g (7 oz) brown rice (1 cup)
  • 450ml (15 fl oz) chicken stock (2 cups)
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds

  • To garnish
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • parsley


  1. Method
  2. Pour the sherry and soy sauce into a large bowl. Add the sugar and stir until it has dissolved.

  3. Cut the steak into 1.25cm (½ inch) slices and add to the bowl. Turn the steak to coat, then cover the bowl, refrigerate and leave to marinade for at least an hour.

  4. Remove the bowl from the fridge just before preparing the rice to enable steak to come to room temperature.

  5. For the rice
  6. Put the onion, rice, stock, and cumin seeds into a large pan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for 35–40 minutes until the stock has been absorbed by the rice.

  7. When it is cooked, leave to rest for 10 minutes while cooking the steak and vegetables.

  8. For the steak
  9. First, cut the tomatoes in half and then each half into thirds.

  10. Drain the meat, reserving the marinade.

  11. Blend the cornflour/cornstarch into the marinade and set to one side.

  12. Now heat the oil in a large frying pan/skillet over a medium heat. Add the steak and stir-fry for 2–3 minutes, turning frequently, until lightly browned.

  13. Add the mushrooms and stir-fry for a further minute.

  14. Add the tomatoes and stir in the reserved marinade. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and cook for 1 minute.

  15. To serve
  16. Divide the rice amongst four plates, spooning it around the edge of each plate to form a circle. Now spoon the steak and vegetables into the centre of the rice, and spoon over any sauce remaining in the pan.

  17. Serve immediately garnished with a little parsley.

Updated: February 2, 2019