Abbey’s Favourite Recipes

Abbey’s top tips and favourite recipes here….

HONEYDEW CHEESECAKE

Ingredients:
250g ginger nut biscuits
100g butter
1 small ripe honeydew melon
50g sugar
600g soft cheese
200ml double cream
50g icing sugar

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Method:

  1. Either blitz or bash up the ginger biscuits (using a rolling pin) to the size of breadcrumbs.
  2. Melt the butter in a saucepan and then tip in the smashed biscuits and stir. Transfer to a 23cm spring-form cake tin and press down with the back of a spoon. Chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  3. Cut the melon in half, place one half in the fridge to use later. Remove the seeds from the other half and scoop out the flesh. Using a food processor/hand blender, blitz the melon to a thick liquid and then pour into a saucepan, along with the sugar. Bring to a boil and reduce for a couple of minutes until syrupy. Continue to boil until it reaches a thick, sweet syrup. Take off the heat and leave to cool. Reserve a little of the syrup and place in the fridge – you’ll use this to decorate the top of the cheesecake later.
  4. Beat the soft cheese in a large bowl until smooth and creamy then add the double cream. Beat, with the icing sugar, until the mixture reaches a thick custard consistency. Pour in the thick melon syrup and stir well until the cheese cake mixture is tinted with yellow and has a mellow and fresh sweetness.
  5. Pour this mixture onto the cooled base and smooth out as evenly as you can. Refrigerate for a good few hours, or ideally overnight.
  6. Once set, take out of the fridge and leave to warm a little for about half hour. Release the cake from the spring form tin. Take the remaining half of melon and chop it up either with a knife or melon baller. Pile the slices/cubes/balls of melon on top of the cheesecake. Pour over the cold melon syrup, allowing some to run over the sides.

COURGETTE TART

Ingredients
2 tbsp olive oil
4 courgettes, thinly sliced
2 x 250g tubs ricotta
4 eggs
Large handful basil leaves, shredded
Grating of nutmeg
50g parmesan, grated
1 large garlic clove, crushed
500g block puff pastry
Dash of flour, for dusting
Large handful pine nuts

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Method

  1. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Heat half the olive oil in a frying pan. Sizzle the courgettes for 5 mins until golden around the edges, then set aside. In a bowl, beat the ricotta with the eggs, basil, nutmeg, half the Parmesan and the garlic. Set aside.
  2. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to a rough round about 40cm wide, then transfer to a baking tray. Spread the pastry with the ricotta mix, leaving a 4cm border. Press the courgette slices into the ricotta, then scatter over the pine nuts and remaining Parmesan.
  3. Bring the sides up over the edge of the ricotta, pinch to encase the filling, then bake for 30 mins until the filling is puffed up and golden. Leave to cool slightly and enjoy warm or cold with a crisp green salad.

Jenny’s Root Vegetable Tart

Feeds 6 people

Ingredients

2 tbsp olive oil
About 700g root vegetables (a mixture of beetroot/swede/turnip/parsnip/sweet potato – but you can use a mixture of any vegetables you have)
Your favourite herbs/spices – I used a tbsp. of fennel seeds and of tbsp. coriander seeds
Honey
2 x 250g tubs ricotta
4 eggs
Handful of coriander leaves, chopped
Grating of nutmeg
200g feta
2 large garlic clove, crushed
1 sheet puff pastry (thickness of £1 coin)
Handful of pumpkin seeds
Salt & pepper to taste

Method

  1. Heat oven to 200C.
  2. Peel and chop the vegetables into small, bite-sized chunks and place them in a roasting tray. Toss the vegetables in oil then sprinkle with fennel and coriander seeds, drizzle with honey and crumble over 100g feta.
  3. Place the vegetables in the oven for about 20-25 minutes or until the vegetables are soft and slightly
  4. In a bowl beat the ricotta with the eggs, coriander, nutmeg, garlic, salt and pepper. Set aside.
  5. Place the puff pastry sheet onto a baking tray. Spread the pastry with the ricotta mix, leaving a 4cm border. Place the roasted vegetables onto the ricotta, then scatter over the pumpkin seeds and remaining feta.
  6. Bring the sides up over the edge of the ricotta, pinch to encase the filling, then bake for 30 mins until pastry is crisp and golden. Leave to cool slightly and enjoy warm or cold with a crisp, green salad.

 

Celeriac, pear and rosemary soup

Feeds 4 people

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 celeriac, peeled and diced
2 pears, peeled, cored & deseeded
1 sprig of fresh rosemary, leaves only
1.2 litres veg stock
Salt & pepper

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a large pan, then add the onion and fry gently for 8-10 minutes, until soft.
  2. Add the celeriac, pears, rosemary and stock, and season. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, until the veg is soft. Use a food processor or blender to blitz until smooth. Reheat to serve.
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