1pinchsalt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1teaspoonfresh thyme leaves for garnishor to taste
Chopped parsley to serve
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Melt butter in a large soup pot over medium-high heat; cook mushrooms in butter with 1 pinch salt until the mushrooms give off their juices; reduce heat to low.
Continue to cook, stirring often, until juices evaporate and the mushrooms are golden brown, about 15 minutes. Set aside a few mushroom slices for garnish later.
Mix onion into mushrooms and cook until onion is soft and translucent, about 5 more minutes.
Stir flour into mushroom mixture and cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes to remove raw flour taste. Tie thyme sprigs into a small bundle with kitchen twine and add to mushroom mixture; add garlic cloves. Pour chicken stock and water into mushroom mixture. Bring to a simmer and cook for 1 hour. Remove thyme bundle.
Transfer soup to a blender in small batches and puree on high speed until smooth and thick.
Return soup to pot and stir in cream. Season with salt and black pepper and serve in bowls, garnished with reserved mushroom slices and a few thyme leaves or chopped parsley.
Combine yeast, 2 tsp caster sugar, milk and 1/3 cup (80ml) lukewarm water in a jug. Stand in a warm place for 10 minutes or until frothy.
Meanwhile, place flour and remaining 1/3 cup (75g) caster sugar in a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. Add yeast mixture and egg yolks, and knead until combined. With the motor running, add butter, 1 piece at a time, kneading well after each addition. Knead for 10 minutes or until butter is completely incorporated and dough is smooth and elastic (or knead by hand). Transfer to a greased bowl. Cover and set aside in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled in size. Divide dough into 14 even pieces, roll into tight balls and place on a greased tray. Cover and set aside for 20 minutes or until risen slightly.
Meanwhile, to make the cheesecake filling, in the cleaned stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk cream cheese, sour cream, 1 tbs icing sugar and vanilla until smooth. Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a 1.5cm plain nozzle.
To make the strawberry filling, combine strawberries and remaining 2 tsp icing sugar in a bowl and transfer to another piping bag fitted with a 5mm plain nozzle. Half-fill a large saucepan or wok with oil and heat to 160°C (a cube of bread will turn golden in 3 minutes when oil is hot enough). Place extra caster sugar on a plate. In batches, fry doughnuts, turning halfway, for 8 minutes to cook through. Toss hot doughnuts in extra caster sugar, then drain on paper towel. Insert a knife into each doughnut to create a hole.
Pipe in cheesecake filling, then strawberry filling. Scatter with ground dried strawberries, if using, to serve.
2x 250g punnets strawberrieshulled, sliced into rounds
1Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1cup⁄3icing sugar mixture
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Combine flour, semolina and salt in a large bowl. In a medium jug, combine warm water, yeast, sugar and oil. Set aside for 3 minutes or until foamy.
Make a well in centre of flour mixture and gradually pour in yeast mixture. Using your hands, gradually combine ingredients to form a dough.
Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5 minutes or until smooth. If dough is too sticky to work with, add up to 100g extra flour.
Lightly grease a large bowl with extra oil. Transfer dough to bowl, then cover with plastic wrap. Set aside in a warm and dry place for 45-60 minutes or until dough has doubled in size.
Dust an oven tray with extra semolina. Turn out dough onto prepared tray and shape into a rough oval. Dust with a little more extra semolina, cover with a clean dry tea towel and set aside to prove for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 180°C. Toss strawberry rounds with vinegar and 2 Tbsp of the icing sugar in a large bowl.
Stud dough with strawberry rounds, poking into indentations to stop dough from rising while baking. Dust with 1 Tbsp of the remaining icing sugar and drizzle over a little of the bowl juices from strawberries. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden.
Dust with remaining sugar and scatter over basil leaves. Slice into pieces and serve.
1headcauliflowerleaves removed and stem trimmed so cauliflower lays flat, but still intact
1 250gpack frozen spinachthawed, water squeezed out and chopped
4spring onions(white part) thinly sliced
115gcream cheesesoftened and cubed
500gthinly sliced bacon rindless bacon rashers
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Preheat oven to 220c. Bring 8 cups water, oil, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons salt to a boil in a large pot.
Add cauliflower and bring back to a boil. Reduce to a gentle simmer and place a plate on top of the cauliflower to keep it submerged. Simmer until a knife easily inserts into the centre, about 12 minutes.
Using 2 slotted spoons or a mesh spider, transfer cauliflower to a small rimmed baking tray. Let cool.
Meanwhile, combine spinach, eggs, green onions, garlic, cheddar, cream cheese, panko, and Parmesan and place in a piping bag with a 2cm tip.
Position cooled cauliflower stem side up on baking tray. Pipe filling between stalks of florets. Flip cauliflower stem side down, then lay strips of bacon, just slightly overlapping strips, over cauliflower, tucking ends of strips into bottom of cauliflower.
Roast, rotating sheet halfway through, until golden all over, about 30 minutes.
Season the meat with salt and pepper on all sides and preheat the oven to 180C.
In an oven proof pot or casserole dish on medium high heat brown the steak on all sides with a little olive oil. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
Turn the heat to medium and add the chopped pancetta. Brown the pancetta until crisp and then add the onion, celery and carrots. Cook the veggies until soft and translucent, and then add the garlic. Cook for another few miutes.
Sprinkle the veggies with the teaspoon of pepper and then add the wine, scraping the browned bits off the bottom of the pot. Let the wine simmer for a minute or two and stir in the tomatoes.
Add the dried and fresh herbs and combine with the veggie mixture. Let the mixture come to a slow boil and then place the beef back into the pot.
Turn off the stove top, put the lid on the pot and place the pot in the preheated oven. Cook for about 4-5 hours in the oven until the beef falls apart. Check for seasoning, adding the teaspoon salt if needed.
Serve over a Creamy Parmesan Polenta and enjoy!
To make the polenta
In a medium pot heat the milk on medium. Stir every once and a while so the milk won’t burn on the bottom. When the milk comes to a slow boil, add the polenta and stir.
Continue stirring the polenta until it thickens to a heavy creamy texture. Take it off the heat and add the parmesan cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
1large Butternut Pumpkinquartered lengthways (skin-on) and seeds removed
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the pesto
100gshelled pistachio nuts
70gparmesan chopped into rough chunks
1small bunch fresh coriander
1small bunch fresh parsley
1small bunch fresh dill
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Preheat the oven to 200C and line a baking tray with baking parchment.
For the Butternut Pumpkin, rub each wedge of butternut Pumpkin with oil and season generously with sea salt and black pepper. Place on the lined baking tray.
Roast the Pumpkin for about 45-50 minutes, just until the edges have begun to brown slightly (you want to blacken the edges a little to give them a nice chewy texture). Check the Pumpkin is cooked by inserting a knife - if it slides in easily the Pumpkin is cooked.
For the pesto, add the pistachios and cheese to a food processor. Pulse to break them into small pieces and add enough olive oil to slacken the mixture to your desired consistency (you may not need all the oil). Add all the herbs, the chilli (if using) and lemon juice. Pulse again to combine the herbs and add a little more olive oil. Season generously with sea salt and give the mixture one last pulse. Taste the pesto, to make sure it has enough salt and acidity, and allow it to rest in the fridge until you need it.
To serve, serve the butternut Pumpkin on plates, drizzled generously with the pesto. Crumble your feta over the top and scatter some pomegranate seeds over to finish.