Thursday, 23 June 2011

Muffins for the bun in the oven.

My sister-in-law is pregnant: life as we know it is due to end in October.  I could never have predicted what an excitable group we’d turn into - family members bouncing in anticipation like a rowdy bunch of school children on their way to Disneyland. My grandmother had found an especially entertaining new hobby winding my parents up about how old they were now THEY were going to be grandparents until it was pointed out she was about to become  a great-grandmother...  Silence ensued.

So far, I had been enthusiastically referring to the baby as my “proto-neicephew” but at the most recent scan the parents-to-be found out “it” was a “he” so now just nephew suffices.  I’m quite besotted with him already, apparently not only has he already taken after his aunt (a prodigiously accomplished wriggler in her own time) but already I’m filled with plans for him: I have decided that he will become a professional rugby playing, surfing, snowboarder.  My brother has (unfortunately) resolved the baby should instead be a footballing, skiing, surfer.  Either way, quite a lot of pressure, especially considering any sporting prowess he inherits from our mal-coordinated side of the family is limited to say the least.

They’re using an app which plots the baby’s growth via comparisons to fruit and vegetables.  The poor little guy’s  come a long way since initial doctors visits (when he was described as a “cyst-like yolk-sac”); from grape, through an inordinate number of citrus fruits, a variety of earthy root vegetables and has now safely emerged this week as a banana (really?!). 

It being my sister-in-law’s birthday this week, I decided to bake her some birthday muffins.  For some reason banana recipes seemed to be in the forefront of my mind, so after some exploration I found a Nigella recipe for chocolate banana muffins which looked reasonably healthy and pregnancy friendly.  Unfortunately, I am incapable of making any form of muffin without incorporating a batch of my favourite lemon and poppy seed, so I ended up making twice as many as necessary.

Chocolate and Banana Muffins:

First preheat the oven to 200˚C and line a muffin tin with papers.  Mash the bananas (the more over-ripe the better, they only get sweeter and softer).  Then add the oil, lightly beaten eggs and sugar.

Whisk the flour, cocoa powder and bicarbonate of soda together and add to the banana mixture.  I decided to add some milk chocolate chips at this stage as well.  Mix together until fully incorporated and spoon into the 12-hole muffin tin. 

Bake for 15-20 minutes.  Remove from the oven, then cool for a few minutes in the tin before cooling completely on a wire rack.  When cold I topped them with Nutella because... well it’s heavenly with banana and that's all the justification I need.  Store in the fridge in an airtight container and thanks to the addition of the moist bananas they will keep longer than other muffin varieties.

Lemon and Poppy Seed Muffins with Lemon and Clove Icing:

First preheat the oven to 200˚C and line a muffin tin with papers.  Melt the butter and leave to cool.

Rub the sugar and lemon zest together until fragrant. 

Measure out the dry ingredients and add to the sugar and zest.

Whisk together the eggs, lemon juice, butter and milk (the ordinary milk becomes like buttermilk with the acidity of the lemon juice), until well blended. 

Mix the wet and dry ingredients and divide evenly among the muffin cases.  Bake 15-20 minutes.  Remove from the oven, cool for a few minutes in the tin before cooling completely on a wire rack. 

Mix the icing sugar with cloves and 2tbsp of lemon juice.  Once a thick paste has been made with no lumps, gradually add more juice until the desired drizzling consistency is achieved.  Drizzle over the tops of the muffins once they are completely cool, to add an extra zingy kick of lemon.

Nigella's Chocolate and Banana Muffin Recipe: (makes 12)
3 very ripe bananas
125ml vegetable oil
2 eggs
100g soft light brown sugar
225g plain flour
3  tbsp cocoa powder, sifted
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
(I added 100g milk chocolate chips)

Lemon and Poppy Seed Muffins: (makes 12)
Zest of 2 lemons
1 cup sugar
2 ¼ cups self-raising flour
¼ cup poppy seeds
Juice of 1 lemon
2 eggs
½ cup milk

Lemon and Clove Icing:
1 cup of icing sugar
Juice of 1 lemon
A pinch of ground cloves (to taste)

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Pastry is the enemy!

Years ago a friend presented me with a recipe book dedicated to pies in the hopes that I would be inspired to experiment and consequently he would reap the pastry encrusted rewards.   I found several great recipes (two listed below) which have become favourites, but had yet to brave making my own pastry (I hadn’t even glanced at a pastry recipe since “the marble counter incident”... but more on that later).  Genetically I am predisposed to be bad at pastry making.  I have hot hands (with cold feet oddly enough – although yes, ok – that doesn’t affect my pastry making prowess) and nowhere near enough patience.  Last weekend I decided that it was high time I stormed my pastry-phobic fortress and tried my hand at a recipe for mini Apple and Calvados Pies, as a birthday food parcel for that same pie-hungry friend.

In an attempt to get ahead of the game and shuck my poor pastry track-record I decided to have a look for as many helpful tips and techniques as possible.  The number one tip which appeared on almost every site was to keep the pastry as cool as possible: chill the ingredients; use your fingertips (which are the coolest part) to work the dough; use a marble work surface and so on...

Unfortunately marble alone is not enough to cure my pastry woes: while I was still at university, dad bought mum (who is also pastry-challenged) a marble work surface and rolling pin (one assumes this too was a slightly self-motivated gift).  One of the few times it was used resulted in an enraged phone call to let them know that it was all their fault: due to the defective genetics which had been passed on to me I had not only failed at making pastry – I had gotten so angry about it I had smashed the marble work surface by hammering it into submission with the rolling pin.  Needless to say, they weren’t convinced of their allocation of the blame. 

My new plan of attack was simple; chill everything and keep hands cold at all times.  I opened all of the windows and doors, changed into summer clothing even though it was raining and ran my hands under the cold tap at regular intervals.  Finally – victory!  Pastry you may have won countless battles but I’ve finally discovered a way to win the war...

Firstly measure out the dry ingredients.  I have been told that baking is like a science, where every measure must be accurate to keep the ratio of fat and flour correct.  Obviously with my scales I haven’t got a hope of exact measurements (one solitary grain of sugar can often cause the dial to jump erratically by 100g).  Thankfully it still seemed to work.

Once the dry ingredients are measured, sift them together from a height to lighten the mixture (very messy unless your aim is a darned site better than mine!).

Next add the chilled butter, rubbing it in until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs (using the same technique as making crumble topping).  Lift the mix well out of the mixing bowl during this stage so that as much air is incorporated as possible. 

Add the chilled, beaten eggs one by one, mixing in between.  Slowly add the rest of the chilled liquid to achieve the desired consistency.  If too much liquid is added the pastry becomes too sticky and impossible to work with, if you have to add more flour at this late stage it becomes tough (what a fussy, pedantic foodstuff!). 

Wrap in clingfilm and place in the fridge for a minimum of half an hour.  If you decide to chill it for longer then you will need to stand it at room temperature for 15 minutes before starting to roll in order to stop it cracking.

Divide the pastry into two (one for the bases and one for the lids).  Dust the work surface, your hands and the rolling pin (or clingfilm’d wine bottle in my case) with icing sugar.  Roll half of the dough out; and here is where everyone seems to have a different, elaborate, sure-fire trick for getting perfect pastry.  By rolling it: without overworking or stretching; while being very gentle, quick, light, and firm; only in one direction; only away from yourself; only towards yourself; standing on your head and whistling “Sweet Home Alabama” in F minor.  How can anyone use a rolling pin with that much guidance?  I’m afraid I just rolled it... simple as that: I rolled it, turning it every so often so it wouldn’t stick, until it was flat(ish – I was using a wine bottle after all).  That was it. 

Butter and flour the tin (I made tiny pies in a mini-muffin tin), cut the pastry to fit and place in the fridge for another half hour to cool again.  This should stop the pastry from shrinking when cooking. 

Prick the bases with a fork, cover with baking parchment, fill with baking beans/dried pulses/rice for added weight, and blind-bake for 15 minutes at 180˚C.  Lift out the baking parchment and contents, apply an egg wash and return to the oven for a further 5 minutes.  The egg wash acts as a moisture sealing glaze and is made by mixing 1tsp liquid (milk or water) per egg white (with spices mixed in if desired).

Roll out the second half of the pastry for the lids and leave on a baking sheet in the fridge to keep cool.

Meanwhile, make the pie filling.  Melt the butter in a pan, add the apples, sugar, cinnamon, raisins (if using), zest and Calvados.  Cook until the apples have softened (approximately 10 minutes).  If the mixture looks too runny add a small amount of arrowroot to thicken.  Remove from the heat and leave to cool.  Then stir in the cream.

Finally assemble the pies.  Spoon the filling into the par-baked crusts, brush the tops with more egg wash and seal the pastry lids over the top.  Bake for 15 minutes until crisp and golden.  While these are baking mix the cinnamon, mascarpone and calvados to taste.

500g plain flour, sifted
 100g icing sugar, sifted
250g cold butter, cubed
Optional pastry flavouring (zest of 1 lemon, 1tsp mixed spice/cinnamon/cloves/nutmeg etc)
2 large eggs, beaten
a splash of milk

Apple and Calvados Filling: (makes 24 mini pies or 12 cupcake sized pies)
25g Butter
8 Granny Smith (or similar tart dessert) apples, peeled, cored and diced to 1cm
75g caster sugar
1/4tsp ground cinnamon
1 lemon, zest
3tbsp Calvados
4tbsp double cream
(I added a large handful of raisins into the filling)

Cinnamon Mascarpone:
100g Mascarpone
2tbsp Calvados
1/2tsp Cinnamon
Icing sugar to taste

Venison Pie with Thyme, Mustard and Shallots - Filling: (serves 6)
40g Dried Wild Mushrooms, soaked in boiling water to rehydrate
25g plain flour
1tbsp fresh thyme leaves
1kg venison, cut into large chunks
2tbsp olive oil
400g shallots, peeled but left whole
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
2tbsp dark muscovado sugar
500ml ale
300ml beef stock
2tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2tbsp Dijon mustard
Salt and Pepper
Toss the venison in a bowl with the flour, thyme and some seasoning until coated.  Fry the shallots in half the olive oil over a medium heat until beginning to colour and soften, add the garlic and cook 1 minute.  Remove from the pan and set aside for later.  Brown the meat in batches in the rest of the olive oil then return the shallots and garlic to the pan.  Stir in the sugar, then add the ale, stock, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, mushrooms and 100ml of the mushroom’s soaking liquid. Simmer 2 hours then leave to cool overnight before assembling the pie for the flavours to develop.

Beef and Stilton Pie - Filling: (serves 6)
2tbsp sunflower oil
1kg braising beef, cut into large chunks
4 carrots, peeled, and cut into large chunks
1 large onion, roughly chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
1 small pinch of chilli flakes
4tbsp flour
2tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 bottle (75cl) full-bodied red wine
1 bouquet garni
150g Stilton cheese, crumbled (I use more when I make this)
Heat the oil in a pan until smoking, brown the beef in batches (do not stir – leave to brown a few minutes each side without moving).  Remove from the pan and set aside for later.  Add carrots, onion, garlic and chilli to the pan and cook 8-10 minutes until starting to soften.  Stir in the flour to create a roux and cook until the flour starts to brown.  Add the vinegar and cook until it is reduced slightly.  Add wine, beef and any juices then season.  Bring to the boil, add the bouquet garni and simmer 2 hours or until the meat is tender then leave to cool overnight before assembling the pie.  Sprinkle the stilton over the filling just before adding the pastry top.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Mexican Wave...

I spent last weekend down on the coast of North Devon with three friends attempting to hone my woeful surfing skills.  Having only just begun we must burn up to (at least) four thousand times more energy than competent surfers, and so need something substantial to bolster us after a day spent flailing through the waves.  With this in mind, I decided to try out Bill Granger’s Fish Burrito recipe.  Fish Burritos, like surfing was something I've always loved the concept of but had never got around to trying (for shame!), I'm now just as hooked on both.

After a very long and reasonably tedious journey down the ghastly M4/M5 combo on Friday evening, (accompanied by an aggressive game of car trivial pursuit which I didn’t win) Saturday morning dawned blissfully warm and sunny.  We popped into Barnstaple town centre to get supplies for the gargantuan evening feast that was planned and discovered a fantastic little terrace of tiny
grocery shops (Butcher’s Row next to the town’s Saturday pannier market).  All in a tidy queue; butchers, bakers (all that was missing was the candlestick makers), green grocers, cheesemongers and my favourite – a great fishmongers -  stood side by side. 

 The recipe called for Snapper which wasn’t available but any firm fish would work in its stead.  Lengthy deliberation led to us deciding to puchase monkfish which was pricey but absolutely delicious, and turned out to be a great substitute well worth the extra pennies.

 After visiting the fish mongers, the cheesemongers,  the green grocers and a local convenience store to buy the tortillas, we were finally ready to start working up an appetite for dinner. 

Several debates about which beach to head to, and one emergency stop when (due to insufficient knowledge of fastening tie-on roof-racks) we almost lost the surfboard from the roof of the car later; we settled on Croyde.  It was low tide and a long walk from car park to water - the talk turned from grumbling how puny the waves looked to mounting dismay as it dawned on us just how huge they were up close... Despite small, learner-friendly two foot waves having been promised, these waves were four foot, powerful and way out of our comfort zone.  After hours of being continuously chewed up and spat out, we’d had a great time but the waves were getting bigger and we were utterly exhausted. 

Bruised, battered, and with at least half of the gulf-stream firmly wedged in my right ear, we called it a day and headed back to base for feeding time at the zoo.  Burritos have in hindsight been added to the list (along with good old spaghetti bolognaise), of meals not to eat on a first date.  No matter how strategic the stacking of the contents, there seems to be no getting away from overfilling.  In greed/hunger, I always end up covered from head to toe, somewhat like an over-excited two year old.  Obviously larger wraps are needed...

First cut the fish into strips and leave to marinade for 15 minutes with the coriander, paprika, cumin, chilli, salt, pepper, lime zest and olive oil.  The recipe suggests using a blender or food processor to process until the marinade ingredients form a paste, but not having a food processor, I just hand chopped them which worked fine.

Next wrap the tortillas in foil and pop them in the oven to warm (at 180˚C they will take approximately 10-15 minutes to warm – make sure the foil is tightly sealed or the tortillas will dry out and become brittle).  Shred a baby gem lettuce, then add the lime zest and juice to the sour cream (Bill’s recipe was for lime mayonnaise which I’d be interested to try next time), stir and keep chilled until needed.

Meanwhile make the cucumber salad (which was delightfully refreshing and a great addition for those who weren’t so keen on the spicy warmth of the chillies).  Chop the cucumber into small dice and toss with the cherry tomatoes, spring onions, coriander, lime juice, chilli, salt and sugar. 

Then make the salsa by mixing the cherry tomatoes, coriander, red onion, lime juice, salt and pepper, ground coriander, ground cumin and a dash of white wine vinegar.

Just before you’re ready to cook the fish (last minute!) make the guacamole, to prevent it turning brown from being left out for too long.  Mash the avocado and stir together with coriander, red onion, salt, tomatoes, lime juice and zest.

Finally cook the fish, by laying it in a single layer in a frying pan and cooking on a high heat a couple of minutes each side.

And then the best bit... the eating!  Predictably, in typical style a competition about who could make the prettiest burrito was suggested.  Unfortunately it transpired that none of us were particularly proficient at aesthetic tortilla stuffing but thankfully they tasted amazing none-the-less.  Post-dinner, the evening quickly progressed (or perhaps degenerated would be a more appropriate expression) to margarita hour... we used a ratio of two parts tequila to one part lime juice and one part cointreau, covering the rim of the glasses with fine milled salt.  Yikes!  Messy proportions methinks.  Add to that the fact that we made the error of trying this without crushed ice and it’s easy to see how the evening got away from us before we’d even left the house.  Next time, I would like to try a salt/sugar mix round the rim (as the pure salt was pretty overpowering), and mixing the ingredients in equal parts.  After just one (large) margarita we were on our way out with many a tequila shot to follow...

Luckily the best cure for tequila induced headaches is wedging yourself into a cold, sodden, wetsuit, and concentrating hard on not falling over, so our Sunday morning surf (in thankfully very forgiving waves this time) was much appreciated.  This unfortunately had to be followed by the LONG drive home in the rain, with Sunday traffic hindering us at every opportunity.

I’ve still got water in my ear now almost a week later and something definitely went wrong with the camera - having looked back on the photos, the waves look disappointingly tame and somehow we don’t look anywhere near as cool as we thought -but still there’s no denying it, I’m utterly addicted! 

Quantities to feed 4...

Lime Sour Cream:
1x 284ml tub of sour cream
1  lime, zest and juice
Salt and Pepper

The Fish:
50g finely chopped coriander
2 tsp paprika
1tsp cumin
1 red chilli finely chopped
1tsp salt
1 lime, zest
80ml olive oil
750g firm white fish

Cucumber Salad:
1 cucumber, peeled and deseeded
250g cherry tomatoes, halved
4 spring onions, sliced
A handful of coriander, roughly chopped
1 lime, juice
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely sliced
1tsp salt
1tsp caster sugar

2 ripe avocados
5-6 cherry tomatoes, finely chopped
¼ red onion finely chopped
1 lime, zest and juice
A handful of coriander, roughly chopped

250g cherry tomatoes
A handful of coriander, roughly chopped
½ red onion finely chopped
1 lime, juice
Salt and Pepper
½tsp ground coriander
½tsp ground cumin
Dash of white wine vinegar

I’ll let you decide who won the “prettiest” burrito competition, a hopeless effort all round I’m afraid (and this is with the “unsightly” ones edited out!).

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Give us this day our daily bread...

I've always struggled with bread recipes, unfortunately despite a fine appreciation of the freshly baked loaf; I have fallen sadly short of producing many myself.  In this I am quite unlike my father who bakes bread constantly: he meticulously follows a recipe which is never EVER deviated from, churning out endless, utterly delicious, wholemeal loaves.  (With service like that how did they ever convince me to move out?)

It’s not the lack of a bread machine holding me back from following in my father’s bready footsteps, (after all there was life before bread machines right?).  Annoyingly it’s no better reason than not having the most simple of requirements - an airing cupboard. 

When I first tried baking bread I realised that almost all of the recipes suggest proving not once but twice “somewhere warm like an airing cupboard”.  At first I used this as an excuse, wimped out, and baked less time consuming but less satisfying yeast-less breads – but soda bread, my one-trick-bread-baking pony can only take you so far! 

When proving bread you need to leave the yeast time to ferment (ideally somewhere warm... yes, yes we know that part), the yeast emits CO2 leavening the dough.  Proving is usually recommended to take as long as necessary for the dough to increase by one and a half times or double in size.  The timescale of how long this takes is increased or decreased according to the temperature of the dough. 

Unfortunately there is little suggestion of what to substitute said airing cupboard with if your flat doesn’t come equipped with this baking prerequisite.  (How on earth did domestic bakers of the world survive before central heating?)

Initial searches suggested placing the dough in the bottom of the oven and proving it on the lowest setting (apparently 40˚C is an ideal temperature).  In a modern kitchen I’m sure this would work – in a kitchen born in the 1970s (conservative guess) with an oven which cooks at a temperature unpredictably unrelated to the dial on the front, an alternative was needed. 

So in a bid to still be able to bake without the obligatory airing cupboard I read up quite a lot on various different techniques and have stumbled upon the baking version of the impossible dream.  Cold proving – oh how I love thee...  Even better – it apparently increases the taste and texture of the finished result.  Result indeed!  Amazingly I’ve also found it fits perfectly into life for the 9-5ers with busy schedules who want to have a life and their freshly baked loaf!

My first foray into cold proving was last week, and I decided to test it with foccacia.  Now as I’m sure you can tell, I’m not a fervent baker - I haven’t tried my hand at a loaf since my Christmas stollen. But I had some friends coming round who function in a time-zone operating 45 minutes later than the rest of London.  In an attempt to stave off a hangry fit (it’s genetic, like most of my family I get very grumpy when peckish), I decided to bake a loaf to bridge the gap between the anticipated late arrival of my guests and dinner arriving on the table.

The recipe I first tried was from Delicious Magazine but this had to be tweaked slightly (as usual) because: a. I don’t own a bread machine and b. It required that elusive darned airing cupboard again.  This time though I had a solution. 

Who knew bread making could be so easy: mix four ingredients; knead a couple of minutes and bung in the fridge over night to rise.  In the morning knock back the dough, pop into a tin, prod some dimples in the top and put back into the fridge for the second prove while you’re at work.  When you get back that evening, sprinkle over the toppings, drizzle with olive oil and bake.

I’d anticipated serving the loaf with a bowl of pesto for people to tear and dip... but due to a mess up with London transport (shock!) everyone turned up 45 minutes late (double shock!!).  By this time I’d somehow managed to plough through a third of the loaf solo and had resorted to slicing and artfully arranging it to try and disguise how little was left for my 5 guests! (Sorry, what can I say?  I am a bad hostess!!)

Having had such a promising start with my new found technique I decided to branch out and read up a bit more about the foccacia-making process on Dan Lepard’s website. It was the tail-end of a full bank holiday and a few friends in need of sustenance were descending for a hung-over game of Monopoly (last time EVER - apparently even at 30 we’re still not mature enough to play this without it imploding into an out and out brawl).

Dan Lepard is British baking’s superhero and undeniably my favourite baker of all time, his recipes are always different to the standard fare (instead of kneading for hours, he advises ten second bursts, leaving the dough for ten minutes in between – saviour of bingo wings everywhere).  He suggests using rendered pork lard (traditional in northern Italy, to add depth of flavour), and the use of malt (dark ale is substituted in this recipe for ease of availability). He also proposes a completely different method (which I didn’t end up following) – involving an almost puff pastry-like process, folding the dough in thirds and turning and stretching to produce air bubbles and give an unusual aerated texture.  To be honest though, I want to fit baking into my normal day, so I stuck with the same method I’d used previously:

First, measure out and mix the flour, salt and fast-action yeast.  Then slowly incorporate the warm water, olive oil, dark ale and lard (if using) until it comes together into a ball.
The dough should be slightly wetter than normal bread dough.  Knead for a few moments on a lightly floured surface (making sure your hands are dusted with flour as well).  Alternatively you can use olive oil to cover your work surface and hands.

 Pop the dough back into the mixing bowl, cover with oiled clingfilm and place in the fridge overnight.  Next morning knock back the dough, this just means literally knocking the air out - you can punch, slap and/or give it a quick knead.  Then the dough needs to be placed in an oiled tin (I used an 8 inch round cake tin for mine) and flattened slightly, although there is no need to try and make it fit the tin exactly.  Poke dimples into the top of the dough using your fingertips, cover with the oiled clingfilm and place back in the fridge.

In the evening, take the bread out of the fridge, and cover with any toppings you fancy, sprinkle with flaky sea salt and drizzle liberally with olive oil.  I divided my toppings into quarters: paprika, chilli and coriander; shallots; rosemary; and an olive paste (more on that later).

Then bake for approximately half an hour at 180˚C until golden and hollow sounding when the bottom of the loaf is tapped.  Cool on a wire rack.

This recipe only uses half a sachet of yeast, and I just can’t bare half-measures, so I ended up making two of them... yes two!  Now as you can tell, freshly baked bread has never stuck around long enough in my house for me to need to store it longer than a couple of hours (I’m a glutton for gluten!).  But apparently if you wrap freshly baked (and cooled) foccacia loaves in clingfilm and store in the fridge they will last a couple of days.  (I dare you to resist the allure of the oily, crisp, salty loveliness for that long)!  In view of this extra loaf, I hunted out a Nigel Slater recipe for what to do with leftovers.  I made the olive paste he suggests early and used some (thinned down with a little extra olive oil) drizzled over as one of the toppings.

Finally... two loaves, that must mean leftovers right?!  Only, actually no, it doesn’t because I ate one of the loaves (yes the entire loaf) before my long suffering guests arrived (again!) and then ended up feeding them the backup loaf which meant no leftovers.  So Nigel Slater’s recipe was adapted and used as an instant hit of umami spread - the full version will have to wait for my next venture which will accordingly consist of three loaves... 

Delicious Magazine Foccacia Recipe:
350g strong plain white flour
½ tsp salt
7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
210ml blood warm water
15ml olive oil, plus extra for greasing
Handful small fresh sage leaves
Three shallots, finely sliced
Coarse sea salt or crystal salt
2 tbsp olive oil

Dan Lepard’s Foccacia Recipe: (I doubled this to make two loaves)
150ml barely warm water
(1/2 sachet) easy-blend yeast
2 tbsp dark ale
1 tbsp olive oil
250g strong white flour
1/4 tsp fine sea salt
malden salt to sprinkle on the top
(optional - 2 tsp rendered pork or duck fat, or dripping )  - I decided (probably wrongly) that rendered pork lard sounded like an Italian version of bacon dripping.
  1. Paprika, crushed dried chillies, fresh coriander
  2. Rosemary
  3. Taleggio mixed with olive oil to thin for drizzling
  4. Sliced Shallots
Nigel Slater’s Olive Paste:
150g stoned, green olives
2 small cloves of garlic, peeled
2 large anchovy fillets
1 tbsp capers
lemon juice
the leaves from a sprig of rosemary
olive oil