Spring menu one

Spring menu one

Early spring

By
From
Annie's Farmhouse Kitchen
Serves
8
Photographer
Patricia Niven; Illustrations: Robin Cowcher

Goose egg pappardelle with smoked trout, dill & creme fraiche

Braised beef shin

Lime tart

Goose egg pappardelle with smoked trout, dill & creme fraiche

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
300g creme fraiche
finely grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons picked dill sprigs
salt flakes
freshly ground black pepper

Fresh papardelle

Quantity Ingredient
500g unbleached plain flour
350g eggs, weighed in the shell
1/2 teaspoon salt flakes

Hot-smoked rainbow trout

Quantity Ingredient
120g salt flakes
100g soft brown sugar
2 teaspoons fennel seeds
2 rainbow trout
1 handful dill or fennel fronds
2 tablespoons apple sawdust

Method

  1. To make the pappardelle, mound the flour on a work surface – a granite counter or wooden board is ideal. Make a well in the centre of the flour and add the eggs and salt. Using a fork, beat the eggs and salt as if making scrambled eggs. As you beat the eggs, use the fork to slowly incorporate the flour, starting from the inside edge and working around the well (be careful not to break the walls of the well or the eggs will spill out). Keep going until a dough starts to form and clump.
  2. Using your hands, collect and incorporate the remaining flour, kneading the dough until it is no longer taking in any more flour. (Alternatively, put the dry ingredients in a food processor. Whisk the eggs together, pour into the processor and pulse until a dough forms.) Knead on a lightly floured surface for about 10 minutes or until the dough is smooth. Form into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and leave to rest for at least 20 minutes.
  3. Once the dough has rested, lightly flour your work surface and cut the dough ball into quarters. Work with one piece at a time – cover the remaining pieces with a clean tea towel until you are ready to roll them out. Push the dough piece into a flat rectangle with the palm of your hand and dust lightly with flour. Feed it through the widest roller setting of a pasta machine. Dust lightly with flour again and fold it into thirds, then run it through the widest setting again.
  4. Continue to feed the dough through the rollers, setting the rollers closer together each time until you reach your desired thickness – for pappardelle, it needs to be rolled to the second-last thickness in most pasta machines.
  5. Lay the sheet of dough flat on a table and cut into 1 cm (1⁄2 in) wide ribbons. Hang the ribbons over a broomstick balanced between two chairs. Repeat these steps with the remaining dough. If you find the pasta gets a little large and unwieldy as you are rolling it, cut it in half for easier handling.
  6. Allow the pasta to dry for 15 minutes, by which time it will have a slightly leathery texture. At this point you can cook it, but if you want to store it, let it dry completely, then gently remove it from the broom handle and store it in containers until you’re ready to use it.
  7. To make the hot-smoked rainbow trout, combine the salt, sugar, fennel seeds and 1 litre (35 floz) of water in a saucepan and bring to the boil to dissolve the dry ingredients. Set aside to cool completely.
  8. Wash the fish thoroughly, removing any traces of blood. Place in a glass, ceramic or plastic container, pour over the brine to cover and leave for an hour in the refrigerator. Remove the fish from the brine, rinse and pat dry, then return to the refrigerator for another 3 hours to dry. Stuff the fish with the dill or fennel fronds.
  9. Line your smoking wok with foil, then add the sawdust. Place a lightly oiled rack in the wok, then put the fish on the rack, leaving plenty of space around them for the smoke to circulate. Cover with a tight-fitting lid or foil and place over a medium heat. When wisps of smoke appear, reduce the heat to low–medium and smoke for about 15 minutes.
  10. Check to see if the fish is cooked through (if you press at the top of the fish it will feel firm). Remove from the heat and rest in the wok for another 15 minutes to give the flavours time to soften and develop. The smoked fish can be served warm or chilled, but is best eaten within 48 hours.
  11. Shortly before you are ready to serve, bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil.
  12. Peel the skin from the fish, then remove the flesh in little chunks, being sure to remove any tiny pin bones. Set aside.
  13. Place a large frying pan over a medium heat, add the creme fraiche and lemon zest and bring to the boil. Add the trout and reduce to a simmer.
  14. The pasta will only take about 3 minutes to cook so you need to have your wits about you. Have a strainer ready in the sink and a warm serving platter or bowls at hand.
  15. Place the pasta in the boiling water, stir gently and cook for 3 minutes. Test a little to see if it is al dente, then strain.
  16. While this is happening, turn up the heat under the creme fraiche mixture and boil until it thickens and has large bubbles forming.
  17. Add the cooked pasta to the cream sauce, scatter over the dill and stir through gently. Season well with salt and pepper and serve immediately.

Braised beef shin

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
60ml olive oil
2kg whole beef shin, off the bone
salt flakes
freshly ground black pepper
2 onions, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
4 celery stalks, chopped
4 garlic cloves
150ml port, cognac or armagnac
1 litre Veal Stock
chopped flat-leaf parsley, to garnish
1 quantity Mashed potato

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 120°C.
  2. Heat the oil in a large heavy-based frying pan over a medium heat. Season the shin with salt and pepper, then sear in the pan until brown on all sides. Transfer to a deep baking dish.
  3. Add the onion, carrot, celery and garlic to the pan and cook over a medium heat for about 10 minutes or until softened and beginning to brown. Scatter the vegetables around the meat in the dish.
  4. Discard any oil in the pan, then return it to the heat and deglaze with the port, Cognac or Armagnac, stirring to dissolve all the bits stuck to the bottom of the pan. Add the stock and bring to the boil, then pour it over the meat in the dish. Cover with a sheet of baking paper and then seal with foil. Transfer to the oven and cook for 8 hours.
  5. By the end of the cooking time, the meat should be very dark and soft. Carefully transfer the shin to a deep serving dish, then strain the liquid into a saucepan, discarding the vegetables. Skim the fat from the surface, bring to the boil and reduce to a rich, unctuous consistency. This should take about 10 minutes, but it will depend on how much evaporation has occurred during cooking. Pour the sauce over the meat and scatter with the chopped parsley. Serve with mashed potato.

Lime tart

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
1 quantity Sweet shortcrust pastry
5 eggs
250g caster sugar
finely grated zest of 3 limes
juice of 6 limes
200ml pouring cream
good quality vanilla ice cream or thick cream, to serve

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C and grease a 28 cm tart tin.
  2. Take the pastry out of the refrigerator and roll it out on a well-floured surface to a 3 mm thickness. Loop the pastry around your rolling pin, then gently unroll it over the prepared tin. Smooth down the pastry, removing any air bubbles trapped under the surface, then trim with scissors about 1 cm above the edge and fold back and pinch together to form a neat edge.
  3. Line the pastry with baking paper and fill with pie weights or uncooked rice or beans. (You can keep about 1 kg rice or beans in your cupboard for this purpose and reuse them every time a recipe calls for blind-baking pastry.) Put the tin in the oven and blind-bake the pastry for 10–15 minutes or until the top edge starts to colour.
  4. While the pastry is baking, make the filling. Whisk the eggs and sugar until well combined, then add the lime zest, lime juice and pouring cream, and stir thoroughly.
  5. Remove the paper and weights from the pastry case and bake for a further 5–10 minutes or until golden all over. It is important that the pastry is fully cooked before you add the filling.
  6. Reduce the oven temperature to 160°C.
  7. Ladle the filling into the hot pastry case, then carefully return it to the oven and bake for 25–40 minutes. The exact cooking time depends on how effective your oven is. Don’t forget that this is essentially a custard, which likes to cook nice and slowly. Bake until the tart is just cooked and the centre is slightly wobbly.
  8. Allow to cool on the bench and serve at room temperature. You can refrigerate it overnight prior to serving, but I always prefer a tart whose pastry has not seen the refrigerator as it retains a delicious crispness. Serve with ice cream or thick cream.

Timeline

  • The day before

    Make the brine and chill. Cook the beef shin, remembering it will take 8 hours, then remove from the sauce and refrigerate the two separately (this will set the fat in a hard layer on the sauce, making it easy to remove).

    The day of serving

    Brine the trout. Make the pasta and refrigerate. Roll and cut the pasta, then dry. Roll the pastry and refrigerate. Remove the trout from the brine and dry.

    1–2 hours before serving

    Smoke the trout. Prepare the dill. Blind-bake the tart shell. Make the tart filling. Bake the tart, set aside. Make the mashed potato.

    To serve

    Preheat the oven to 180°C, place t he beef in a baking dish, add half the cooking liquor and heat in the oven. Reduce the remaining cooking liquor over a low heat on the stovetop. Cook the pasta and make the sauce. Serve the pasta. Warm the mashed potato. Arrange the beef on a platter with the warmed mash and the reduced liquor poured over the meat. Serve with green vegetables of your choice. Serve the tart at the table with cream and/or ice cream.
Tags:
French classics
Farmhouse
rustic
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