13 April 09


Crispy Quack Eggs with Radish Mayonnaise

The inspiration for this dish came from Stephen Williams,the chef at the Harwood Arms. We went there last week to take photos of the pub and Stephen served up some amazing food. Amongst his array of dishes was a venison Scotch egg. It was delicious and we thought it was ingenious.

Inspired by Stephen recipes,we decided to use quails eggs and slow cooked duck legs, so the name quack eggs was born. We had a giggle and hope that you will find it funny too.

I cooked the duck legs in the water bath for 8 hours, flaked the meat and made a freshly ground aromatic five spice blend to flavour the duck meat.

The radish mayonnaise is also a true delight. I found fresh horseradish and breakfast radishes at our local farmers market on Saturday morning. I made a horseradish mayonnaise in the thermomix using grain mustard and


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10 April 09


Soufflé Orange Tapioca Cream

I was horrified to hear the  negative comments from the general public on tapioca pudding.

Last week I was doing a cooking demonstration to a group of ladies who all remember the original Ministry of Food recipes during World War Two. They described tapioca pudding as stodgy and typical of school dinners.

My experience is the complete opposite. My mother used to love making a baked tapioca pudding for us. She did not like cooking much but baking was her forte.

I remember the tapioca pudding emerging out of the oven like a big fluffy pillow, all puffed up with a sumptuous creamy centre. The sweet smell of caramelising meringue used to hang in the air, and I was really naughty and pinched the caramelised crusty bits.

For that reason I have made these as individual puddings, so each person gets their own crusty bits. Mum told me that she


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07 April 09


Slow Cooked Duck Leg with Sweet Tamarind Pickled Rhubarb

The outdoor rhubarb season is in full swing. The combination of rhubarb with duck is a match made in heaven.

I have made the pickled rhubarb twice ,once with forced rhubarb in December and now with the outdoor rhubarb. The outdoor rhubarb has a more earthy flavour and the colour is slightly browner in comparison to the bright pink from the forced rhubarb. I’m truly torn between the two, I think I like both equally as much but my preference is to use the outdoor rhubarb with savoury foods and the forced with sweet bakery items.

The earthiness of the outdoor rhubarb truly complements the duck and makes this dish extra special.

I cooked these duck legs in the water bath, if you do not have this facility you can conft the duck legs in duck fat in a very low oven for 2 – 3 hours until tender. Surprisingly


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05 April 09


Fig and Sour Cherry Hot Cross Muffins

It’s a lovely sunny day; all my spring flowers are in bloom. The smell of hyacinths is in the air and my bunny Elly is hopping over the grass. It’s a perfect day to bake Fig and Sour Cherry Hot Cross muffins.

The aroma of these light, freshly baked and heavily spiced hot cross buns hangs for a while in the kitchen. This certainly adds to the joy of making them.

Baking hot cross buns is a Good Friday custom as it’s a reminder of the crucifixion. I shall bake these again this coming Friday.

I thought it would be cool and slightly different to line a muffin tray with parchment paper and bake these in the muffin tray. They are still buns but just look slightly swanky and different.

There is no added sugar in the recipe as the dried fruits naturally add the sweetness. I brush them with


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