Winter entertaining

The past two or three months have been a fairly torrid time at work, so it’s great to feel I’m finally emerging from that into a somewhat saner period, one where there’s time to catch up with friends. Not quite sure how long it’s been since we had friends for dinner, but that changed the other night, and the meal displayed a heavy reliance of The Silver Palate Cookbook.  Have praised that cookbook before, though don’t use it a lot. Perhaps the meals are a bit fiddly for every day eating? Was a whole day in the kitchen, really, preparing for the evening. Not something I’d want to do on a regular basis, though I enjoyed it. But anyway, the menu … 

Minted sweet pea & spinach soup

Winter pork & fruit ragout + kumara & carrot puree + mesclun salad with raspberry vinaigrette

Ruth Pretty’s lemon & blueberry delicious pudding

 Lemon delicious was a family favourite, and I must get Mum’s recipe … it’s better than this, which was the only part of the menu not from that cookbook … I thought it’d be a good contrast to the rest, though find this one a tad sweet. But the easy mixing with the food processor does recommend this recipe. 

60 gms butter, diced & at room temperature

1 ½ cups caster sugar

3 eggs, separated

3 tbspn self-raising flour (I accidentally put ordinary flour into the mix, but happily realized before hitting the pulse button … was able to scrape it off and add the right stuff, otherwise the pud may have been a bit pancake-y)

1 ½ cups milk

4 tbsp lemon juice

4 tspn lemon zest

2/3 cup blueberries 

Pre-heat oven to 180 C. Grease a 29 cm oval gratin. In the food processor, put butter & sugar, process till pale & creamy. Add egg yolks & process for a minute. Add flour & milk and process to make a smooth batter … the batter’s quite liquid … you need to scrape mixture form the sides of the bowl & process again to mix properly. Add lemon juice & zest … pulse … transfer all to a bowl. In another bowl, whish egg whites to soft peals. Fold into batter with a metal spoon. Pour batter into gratin dish … sprinkle with blueberries … fresh or frozen. Stand gratin in roasting tray and pour in hot water to come halfway up sides. Place in oven for 25 – 35 minutes till set but still wobbly. Dust with icing sugar, serve with whipped cream.

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