Bread and Butter Pudding

Bread and Butter Pudding

A traditional English dessert where bread is buttered, then topped with a sprinkling of dried fruits, and then covered with a vanilla custard before topping with cinnamon and demerara sugar. It is then baked until the top is lovely and crispy.

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Bread and Butter Pudding

4 servings
  • Preparation time: 20 minutes
  • Standing time: 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 45 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 28 g (1 oz) softened butter (2 tbsp)
  • 2 slices white bread
  • 2 tbsp currants
  • 2 tbsp sultanas
  • 2 tsp chopped mixed peel
  • 3 eggs, medium (U.K.)/large (N.A.)
  • 1 tbsp caster/superfine sugar
  • 300 ml (10 fl oz) full-fat/whole milk (1¼ cups)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp demerara sugar

Equipment

  • You will also need a 23 × 12 cm (9 × 5 inch) shallow ovenproof dish


  • Method
  • Butter the bread and cut each slice into quarters.

  • With the buttered sides uppermost, arrange the quarters over the bottom of the ovenproof dish, overlapping them to fit.

  • Scatter the currants, sultanas and mixed peel on top.

  • Then in a separate bowl, whisk together two of the eggs and the yolk only of the third. Whisk in the sugar and then stir in the milk and vanilla extract.

  • Strain the custard and then gently pour over the bread.

  • Sprinkle the top with the cinnamon and demerara sugar, and then leave for 30 minutes.

  • Meanwhile preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) (gas 4)

  • Put the dish into a roasting tin/pan and then fill the roasting tin/pan with boiling water until it comes half-way up the sides of the dish. Bake for 45 minutes until the custard is set and the top is brown and crispy.

Updated: December 31, 2019

Baked Bananas in an Orange Sauce

Baked Bananas in an Orange Sauce

For a really quick dessert that is prepared and baked in just 15 minutes. Bananas are sliced and coated with butter, sugar and orange juice and baked with a sprinkling of cinnamon.

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Baked Bananas in an Orange Sauce

4 servings
  • Preparation time: Less than 10 minutes
  • Cooking time: 8–10 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 6 small or 4 large bananas
  • 55 g (2 oz) butter, melted (¼ cup, or ½ stick)
  • 4 tbsp light muscovado sugar/soft light brown sugar
  • 1 orange, juice only
  • ground cinnamon

Equipment

  • You will also need a medium size gratin dish.


  • Method
  • Preheat oven to 200°C/400°F/gas 6.

  • Thickly slice the bananas and spread over the base of the dish.

  • Now pour the butter over the bananas, sprinkle over the sugar, then pour over the orange juice.

  • Finally, add a little ground cinnamon.

  • Bake in the oven for 8–10 minutes until tender and syrupy.

Updated: December 31, 2019

Raspberry Trifle

Raspberry Trifle

Frozen raspberries are used in this light, creamy trifle. Raspberry filled sponges are soaked in sherry and then topped with raspberries and covered in a creamy custard before decorating with dollops of whipped cream and crushed biscuits.

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Raspberry Trifle

8 servings
  • Preparation time: 35 minutes
  • Standing time: 1 hour
  • Refrigeration time: At least 30 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 4 eggs, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.), yolks only
  • 115 g (4 oz) caster/superfine sugar (½ cup)
  • 2 tbsp cornflour/cornstarch
  • 300 ml (10 fl oz) milk (1¼ cups)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 8 trifle sponges or 1 packet lady fingers
  • 4 tbsp raspberry conserve or jam
  • 50 ml (2 fl oz) sherry or framboise (¼ cup)
  • 340 g (12 oz) frozen raspberries (1½ cups), thawed
  • 360 ml (12 fl oz) double/whipping or heavy cream (1½ cups)
  • 3 ratafias or amaretti biscuits

Equipment

  • You will also need a large flat bottomed glass dish or 8 individual glass dessert dishes.


  • Method
  • First pour the milk into a pan.

  • Now put the egg yolks, sugar, and cornflour/cornstarch in a bowl and add 2 tablespoons of milk taken from the milk in the pan. Using an electric whisk, whisk until the mixture is pale in colour and has thickened, 2–3 minutes. Set aside.

  • Stir the vanilla into the milk and bring to the boil. Then slowly pour onto the egg mixture, stirring constantly. When smooth, pour the mixture back into a clean pan and cook over a medium heat, stirring until it starts to thicken, about 3 minutes.

  • Pour into a bowl and cover the surface of the custard with cling film to prevent it forming a skin. Leave to become cold.

  • Meanwhile, slice the trifle sponges or lady fingers in half and spread one half with the raspberry conserve. Now sandwich back together and arrange them in a single layer over the bottom of the glass dish or individual dishes.

  • Drizzle the sherry or framboise over the sponges.

  • Now spoon the raspberries on top of the sponges (you may not need all the juice that has come from thawing the raspberries).

  • Whisk 150ml (5 fl oz) (⅔ cup) of the cream until thick. Using a balloon whisk, whisk the custard to loosen it a little and then whisk in the cream until combined. Pour over the raspberries.
  • Whisk the remaining cream until soft peaks form.

  • Now to decorate the top. Put dollops of cream around the edge of the trifle in the large glass dish or spoon one dollop on top of the trifles in the individual glass dishes. Chill for at least 30 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, crush the biscuits into small pieces and, just before serving, sprinkle over the cream.

Note

  • If a smaller number or servings are needed, just reduce the quantity of ingredients appropriately and use individual glass dishes.

Updated: December 30, 2019

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.

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4 servings
  • Preparation time: 40 minutes
  • Cooking time: 10 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the crème anglaise
  • 240 ml (8 fl oz) full fat/whole milk (1 cup)
  • 180 ml (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)
  • 85 g (3 oz) caster/superfine sugar (⅓ cup)
  • For the meringues
  • 3 eggs, whites only (reserved from the crème anglaise)
  • 85 g (3 oz) caster/superfine sugar (⅓ cup)
  • For the spun sugar
  • 115 g (4 oz) caster/superfine sugar (½ cup)

Equipment

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


  • Method
  • For the spun sugar
  • 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.

  • For the poaching liquid
  • 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 gentle simmer over a low heat while making the meringue.

  • For the meringues
  • 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. 


  • Have a glass or jug of water to hand. Then using two metal 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 simmers very gently. It must not 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. 


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


  • In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until pale and fluffy, about 2–3 minutes.


  • Gradually stir in the warm poaching milk. 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.

To serve

  • Divide the crème anglaise amongst the dessert bowls and then float a meringue egg on top.

    Decorate with a ball of spun sugar.

Updated: December 29, 2019

Apple Snow

This Apple Snow dish is based on the traditional version but it does not use raw eggs. The apples are topped with Greek yogurt and sprinkled with roasted oatmeal.
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Apple Snow

4 servings
  • Preparation time: 20 minutes
  • Cooking time: about 20 minutes
  • Standing time: 45 minutes
  • Refrigeration time: 30 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 4 small apples suitable for cooking
  • 250 g Greek yogurt (1 cup)
  • 1 tbsp medium or coarse pinhead oatmeal/steel cut oatmeal

  • You will also need 4 short glass tumblers


  • Method
  • Peel, core and chop the apples. Put in a pan with 1 tablespoon water and gently cook for 15–20 minutes until the fruit is very soft, stirring occasionally. Transfer to a bowl and whisk to make the apples fluffy. Leave to cool, about 45 minutes.

  • Divide the apple between the glasses and smooth the tops.

  • Stir the yogurt and then spoon on top of the apple. Chill for 30 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, heat a small frying pan/skillet over a medium heat and add the oatmeal. Cook for a few minutes moving the oatmeal around. Once it starts to brown, it is ready. Set aside to cool.

  • Just before serving, sprinkle the oatmeal over the yogurt.

Updated: December 29, 2019

Floating Islands Dusted with Cocoa

Floating Islands Dusted with Cocoa

Floating Islands make a  lovely light dessert where poached meringues float on a creamy crème anglaise and are dusted with cocoa powder.

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Floating Islands Dusted with Cocoa

4 servings
  • Preparation time: 35 minutes
  • Cooking time: 10 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the crème anglaise
  • 200 ml (7 fl oz) milk (⅞ cup)
  • 200 ml (7 fl oz) double cream/whipping or heavy cream (⅞ cup)
  • ½ tsp vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
  • 4 eggs, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.), yolks only (reserving 3 egg whites for the meringue)
  • 55 g (2 oz) caster/superfine sugar (¼ cup)
  • For the meringues
  • 3 egg whites, reserved from the crème anglaise
  • 85 g (3 oz) caster/superfine sugar (½ cup less 1 tbsp)
  • To serve
  • Cocoa powder for dusting or grated plain/dark chocolate.

Equipment

  • You will also need a large sauté pan or large deep sided frying pan/skillet with lid.


  • Method
  • For the meringues
  • In a large grease-free bowl, using an electric hand whisk on high speed, whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form (or use the whisk attachment on a food mixer). Then gradually whisk in the sugar, one tablespoon at a time, until the meringue is thick and glossy. Put to one side while preparing the poaching liquid.


  • For the poaching liquid
  • This will become the crème anglaise. Pour the milk and cream into the pan and stir in the vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract. Bring to a gentle simmer over a low heat.


  • For the islands (also known as quenelles)
  • Fill a tumbler or jug with water. Now, using two metal tablespoons, shape eggs from the meringue. Dip the spoons in the water between making each egg as this will help in shaping them and keeping them smooth. Place the meringue eggs in the poaching liquid as you go. There should be enough meringue to make 8 eggs. Cover the pan and, over a very low heat, poach the meringue eggs for 4–5 minutes, flipping them over halfway through. Make sure the poaching liquid simmers very gently. It must not boil or the meringues will puff up and then collapse. Using a slotted spoon or skimmer, carefully transfer them to a wire rack covered with paper towel to drain. 


  • For the crème anglaise
  • Strain the poaching liquid through a sieve into a jug. 


  • Next, in a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until pale and fluffy, about 2–3 minutes. 


  • Gradually stir in the poaching liquid. Then pour the mixture into a clean pan and cook over a low heat for 3–4 minutes, stirring continuously, until the mixture is smooth and begins to thicken. When it has become thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, remove from the heat.

To serve

  • Divide the crème anglaise amongst four shallow individual serving bowls and then float two meringue eggs on top of each one. 


  • They can then be decorated with a dusting of cocoa powder or a little grated chocolate.

Updated: December 29, 2019

Greek Pasta Bake

Greek Pasta Bake

A tasty baked dish of lamb, pasta and tomatoes covered in a white sauce and topped with grated cheese.

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Greek Pasta Bake

4 servings
  • Preparation time: About 40 minutes
  • Cooking time: 40 minutes hob (30 minutes oven)
  • Ingredients
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 450 g (1 lb) lamb mince/ground lamb
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée/paste
  • 2 × 400g tins or 1 × 28 fl oz can chopped/diced tomatoes
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 150 ml (5 fl oz) good beef stock (⅔ cup)
  • salt and freshly milled black pepper
  • 28 g (1 oz) butter (2 tbsp, or ¼ stick)
  • 28 g (1 oz) plain/all purpose flour (3 tbsp)
  • 300 ml (10 fl oz) milk (1¼ cups)
  • 170 g (6 oz) macaroni (1½ cups)
  • 55 g (2 oz) Cheddar cheese, grated/shredded (½ cup)
  • To serve
  • Accompany with a green salad

Equipment

  • You will also need a 2 litre (3 pint) (8 cup) ovenproof dish.


  • Method
  • Heat the oil in a large pan and cook the onion and garlic over a medium-low heat for 3 minutes, until softened.

  • Increase the heat, add the lamb, and stir-fry for 3–4 minutes until browned all over, breaking up any lumps as it is cooking.

  • Now reduce the heat and stir through the tomato purée/paste and cook for 1–2 minutes.

  • Then stir in the tomatoes, bay leaves, and stock, and season. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 35–40 minutes.

  • 15 minutes before the meat sauce has finished cooking preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) (gas 4).
  • Cook the macaroni in boiling salted water as directed on the packet. Drain well.

  • Meanwhile make the white sauce. Melt the butter in a small pan, then tip in the flour and stir to make a smooth paste. Cook over a low heat for 1–2 minutes. Remove from the heat. Gradually whisk in the milk, stirring continuously, until smooth. Then cook for 4–5 minutes on a low heat, stirring until the sauce starts to thicken.

  • Spread half the macaroni over the base of the dish. Spoon the meat sauce on top. Then cover with the remaining macaroni.

  • Pour the white sauce evenly over the top and scatter with cheese.

  • Bake for 25–30 minutes until the sauce is bubbling around the edges.

Tip

  • A foolproof way to make a smooth white sauce:

  • Once the butter has melted, tilt the pan so all the melted butter rests in one corner. Tip the flour onto the pool of butter. It will then be easier to stir to a smooth paste. Also preheat the milk in a microwave, on high, for 1 minute, then gradually whisk it into the roux. Adding warm milk gradually will make a smooth sauce without any lumps.

Updated: December 29, 2019

Spicy Oven Chicken

Spicy Oven Chicken

Succulent chicken pieces with a spicy flour and cheese coating, cooked in butter in the oven and served with sautéed diced tomatoes and a creamy spice sauce.

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Spicy Oven Chicken

4 servings
  • Preparation time: 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 30 minutes, oven 25, hob 5
  • Ingredients
  • 140 g (5 oz) butter (½ cup + 2 tbsp, or 1¼ sticks)
  • 4 tbsp flour
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp curry powder or chilli powder
  • 4 chicken portions, breasts, legs or quarters, skins left on
  • 6 tbsp Parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • 150 ml (5 fl oz) chicken stock* (⅔ cup)
  • 150 ml (5 fl oz) single cream (table cream) (⅔ cup)
  • 4 tomatoes, diced

Tip

  • *The sauce is enhanced by using a good stock. In Canada I can recommend ‘Better Than Bouillon’. It really makes a tasty stock and doesn’t contain a lot of additives. In the U.K. I would choose the organic range.


  • Method
  • Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) (gas 6)

  • Mix the flour, seasoning and curry or chilli powder together and spread on a plate. Spread the Parmesan cheese on a second plate.

  • In a small roasting pan, melt 115g (4 oz) (½ cup, or 1 stick) of the butter in the oven. This will only take about 1 minute. Then remove.
  • Turn the chicken pieces in the butter, shaking them a little when lifting to remove any excess butter. Coat in the flour mixture and then the cheese. Reserve remaining flour.

  • Return the chicken to the pan in a singe layer, skin side down. Cover with foil, and bake for 20 minutes.

  • Remove the foil, turn the chicken and return to the oven for a further 5 minutes to crisp up.

  • Meanwhile melt the remaining 28g (1 oz) (2 tbsp) butter in a large frying pan/skillet. Add the tomatoes and cook over a medium heat. Shake the pan frequently to keep turning the tomatoes.
  • Take the chicken out of the pan and keep warm while making the sauce.
  • Mix the reserved flour into the buttery residue in the pan and stir well, scraping up any sticky bits from the bottom of the pan. Over a low heat, cook for 1 minute. Slowly blend in the chicken stock and then add the cream. Bring to the boil while continuing to stir and then simmer until the sauce has thickened as is smooth. This will only take a minute or two. Remove from the heat.

  • Serve the chicken with the tomatoes and sauce.

  • Chunky Home Fries go well with this dish.

Updated December 29, 2019

Shepherd’s Pie Napoletana

Shepherd's Pie Napoletana

The traditional shepherd’s pie can be quite bland and my basic Shepherd’s Pie recipe has extra seasonings to liven it up. This one brings a touch of Italian using a Napoletana sauce and with grated Parmesan on the top.

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Shepherd's Pie Napoletana

4 servings
  • Preparation time: 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 40 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 450 g (1 lb) minced lamb/ground lamb
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 fresh rosemary sprig or a large pinch of dried
  • 225 ml (8 fl oz) red wine (1 cup)
  • 500 g (16 fl oz) Napoletana pasta sauce or similar (2 cups)
  • 900 g (2 lb) potatoes, floury (about 6 medium)
  • 55 g (2 oz) butter (¼ cup, or ½ stick)
  • 55 g (2 oz) Parmesan cheese, coarsely grated (½ cup)


  • Method
  • Brown the lamb in a large pan over a medium heat, stirring frequently to break up any lumps, about 7 minutes. It should be really well browned. Then remove from the pan and set aside.

  • Add the onion to the pan with the rosemary and cook until soft and golden, about 10 minutes. There should be enough fat left from browning the meat not to require adding any oil.

  • Now, return the lamb to the pan and stir in the wine. Loosen any crusty bits from the bottom of the pan and then leave the wine to bubble gently until roughly half of it has evaporated.

  • Stir in the pasta sauce and then simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, cut the potatoes into large chunks. Put in a pan of water and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 20–25 minutes until tender. Drain and return to the hot pan to dry off any excess moisture. Mash with the butter and half the Parmesan.

  • Preheat the grill to high.

  • Spoon the meat sauce into a medium-sized ovenproof dish. Top with the potatoes, no need to smooth the surface, then sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan.

  • Brown under the grill for about 3 minutes.

  • Serve with seasonal vegetables.

Tip

  • The dish can be prepared ahead of time up to the grill stage. Cover the dish then refrigerate for up to two days. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/gas 6 and cook the pie for 25–30 minutes until heated through and golden on top.

Updated: December 28, 2019

Lamb Meatballs in a Creamy Sauce

Lamb Meatballs in a Creamy Sauce

These tasty nutmeg seasoned meatballs are cooked in a creamy, wholegrain mustard sauce and served with tagliatelle.

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Lamb Meatballs in a Creamy Sauce

4 servings
  • Preparation time: 50 minutes
  • Refrigeration time: 1 hour
  • Cooking time: 1 hour (oven)
  • Ingredients
  • 2 slices white bread
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 450 g (1 lb) lamb mince/ground lamb
  • 2 eggs, medium (U.K.)/large (N.A.), beaten
  • salt and freshly milled black pepper
  • ¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 28 g (1 oz) butter (2 tbsp, or ¼ stick)
  • 600 ml (20 fl oz) chicken stock (2½ cups)
  • 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • 300 ml (10 fl oz) crème frâiche (1¼ cups)
  • 2 tbsp cornflour/cornstarch

To serve

  • Serve with tagliatelle and a green salad

Equipment

  • You will also need a large frying pan/skillet and a deep sided casserole dish


  • Method
  • Remove the crusts from the bread and cut into rough pieces. Place in a bowl and moisten with the milk. Mix with a fork to break up into crumbs.

  • In a large bowl, mix together the soaked breadcrumbs, onion, lamb, eggs, seasoning, and nutmeg until thoroughly combined.

  • Shape into 32 meatballs, using wet fingers. Just keep a small bowl of water nearby. (Fingers dipped in flour will just become sticky.) Place them on a plate, cover, and chill for 1 hour to firm up.

  • Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F) (gas 4)

  • Meanwhile, heat half the butter in the pan/skillet over a medium heat. When the butter is foaming, add half the meatballs. Shake them in the pan to keep them moving and cook until browned all over, about 5 minutes. Transfer them to the casserole dish using a slotted spoon. Repeat with the remaining meatballs, adding extra butter if needed.

  • Pour the stock into the panskillet. Bring to the boil, scraping off any bits stuck to the bottom of the pan. Then stir in the mustard. Pour over the meatballs.

  • Cover the dish with foil and cook above the centre of the oven for 45 minutes.

  • Next mix the crème frâiche and cornflour/cornstarch together in a bowl, then stir into the casserole until well blended.

  • Return the dish to the oven for a further 15 minutes, uncovered, until the sauce is bubbling and has thickened.

  • Serve over tagliatelle and a salad on the side.

Updated: December 28, 2019

Tuna and Egg Pasta

Tuna and Egg Pasta

Looking for a quick and easy supper from cupboard staples? Then here’s a tasty Tuna and Egg Pasta dish. Penne and a couple of cans of tuna are folded into a cheese sauce and topped with egg and crunchy buttered  breadcrumbs.

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Tuna and Egg Pasta

4 servings
  • Preparation time: about 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 30 minutes (oven)
  • Ingredients
  • 170 g (6 oz) penne (2¼ cups)
  • ½ onion, finely sliced
  • 85 g (3 oz) butter (⅜ cup, or ¾ stick)
  • 55 g (2 oz) flour (⅓ cup + 1 tbsp)
  • 500 ml (20 fl oz) milk (2½ cups)
  • 2 x 160 g tins (170 g cans) chunk light tuna in oil, drained
  • 3 eggs, hard boiled
  • salt and freshly milled black pepper
  • 115 g (4 oz) mature/old Cheddar cheese, grated (1 cup)
  • 55 g (2 oz) breadcrumbs (1 cup)

Equipment

  • You will also need a 1.14 litre (2 pint) (6 cup capacity) ovenproof dish


  • Method
  • Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F) (gas 6)

  • Cook penne and onion together in a pan of boiling, salted water for as long as directed on the packet of pasta. Drain and set aside.

  • Meanwhile melt 55g (2 oz) (¼ cup, or ½ stick) of the butter in a pan and then stir in the flour to make a smooth paste. Cook over a low heat for 1 minute.
  • Then slowly stir the milk into the roux until the sauce is smooth. Bring to the boil, stirring, until the sauce has thickened. Remove from the heat.

  • Next add the cheese and seasoning, and stir until the cheese has melted.

  • Mix in the penne and onion.

  • Then gently mix in the tuna, breaking up any large pieces.

  • Now spoon into the ovenproof dish.

  • Shell the eggs and cut into quarters. Arrange over the top of the pasta and gently press down.

  • Finally, melt the remaining butter in a pan and fry the breadcrumbs until crisp. Scatter over the top.

  • Bake in the oven for 20–30 minutes until bubbling around the edges and browning on the top.

Updated: December 18, 2019

Salmon and Prawn/Shrimp Filo Pie

Salmon and Prawn/Shrimp Filo Pie

This is one of my favourite fish pies which is really good to serve to guests as it looks so scrumptious and different when baked. Filo pastry keeps it light and is used in a decorative way as a topping. The herby cream cheese filling which is added to cubes of salmon and prawns/shrimp is so smooth and delicious too.

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Salmon and Prawn/Shrimp Filo Pie

6 servings
  • Preparation time: 45 minutes
  • Cooking time: 30 minutes
  • Resting time: 12 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 3 -5 sheets filo* pastry
  • 40 g (1½ oz) butter, melted (3 tbsp)
  • 450 g (1 lb) salmon, skinned and cubed
  • 200 ml crème fraîche
  • 200 g cream cheese, softened
  • 2 eggs, medium (U.K.)/large (N.A.)
  • 2 tbsp fresh dill or tarragon, chopped
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 115 g (4 oz) large prawns/shrimp

Note

  • *filo pastry is also known as phyllo pastry

To serve

  • Serve with a green salad.

Equipment

  • You will need a 20cm (8 in) loose-bottomed flan tin, 3.75cm (1½ inches) deep, buttered, and a baking tray/sheet. Also a deep sided frying pan/skillet.


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

  • Pop the baking tray/sheet in the oven to heat up while preparing the pie.

  • Now bring some water to the boil in the frying pan/skillet. It will need to be deep enough to cover the salmon. Then add the salmon and bring back to the boil. Immediately remove from the heat, cover the pan/skillet and leave for the water to poach the salmon, about 2–3 minutes, until it is just cooked. If the prawns/shrimp are uncooked, they can be cooked in the water at the same time as the salmon.

  • With a slotted spoon, remove the fish and leave on a plate to cool completely.

  • Meanwhile, beat together the crème fraîche, cream cheese, eggs, herbs, and seasoning until the mixture is smooth.

  • You are going to need five sheets of the pastry which will be large enough to line the flan tin and overlap the edge. Brush one sheet with melted butter, then lay a second sheet on top, rotating it slightly so the edges don’t line up. Brush this sheet with melted butter. Now lay a third sheet on top, again rotating it slightly, and brush with butter. Lay the fourth sheet on top, slightly rotated.

  • Lift these pastry layers and line the flan tin, gently pressing the pastry down into the tin, and leaving the edges extending over the rim. Brush the top layer of pastry with melted butter.

  • Brush the remaining piece of pastry with melted butter and put to one side so it doesn't dry out.

  • Mix the cold salmon cubes and prawns/shrimps with the cream mixture and tip into the flan tin.

  • Now bring the edges of the pastry up over the the filling around the edge, leaving it roughly scrunched up.

  • Tear the remaining piece of pastry into long strips. Scrunch these up and use them to cover the exposed filling.

  • Place the flan tin on the hot baking sheet and loosely cover with foil. Then bake in the oven for 25 minutes.

  • Remove the foil and continue to bake for a further 3–5 minutes until the pastry is crisp and turning golden in colour.

  • Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes for the filling to set.

  • Now carefully lift the pie from the tin but leave on the base. Let it cool for 2 minutes then gently slide off the base onto a serving plate.

  • Serve cut into wedges along with a green salad.

Notes

  • – Filo pastry dries out very quickly, so keep it covered until needed to be used.
  • – As the pastry does not contain any fat it can be refrozen. Remove the packet from the freezer to thaw, keeping it covered. Then when the pastry is needed, unroll it and remove the 3 or 5 sheets, depending on the size of the sheets. Now carefully roll the remaining pastry back up, return it to its wrapping and place back in the freezer.

Updated: December 16, 2019