Guests were welcomed at the showroom with a glass of mulled wine before being treated to some delicious festive treats prepared and cooked on the Aga. Recipes for all of the dishes served on the night are listed below, courtesy of Mark.
LEEK AND STILTON AND FILO PASTRY PARCELS (MAKES 12)
2 Leeks, trimmed, washed and thinly sliced
1 dessertspoon chopped parsley
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped.
70 grams stilton cheese.
1 dessert spoon crème fraiche.
12 sheets Theo’s filo pastry (Tesco have it, buy and freeze).
Fry the leeks, garlic and parsley for a couple of minutes in the butter until softened. Add the stilton and crème fraiche off the heat and stir in. Season well and allow to cool 10 minutes. Oil one half of a sheet of filo then fold over. Put a decent teasp of the cheese mixture onto the filo at your end, fold across from side to side to form a triangle, oil the other end to fix the filo to itself, and oil the final samosa. Bake on bacoglide in the aga top oven near the top for about 12 minutes.
COARSE PORK,CRANBERRY AND HERB TERRINE (SERVES ABOUT 10)
2 tbsp Olive oil
175g Onions finely chopped
2 Tablespoons fresh cranberries
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 kg pork mince
4 boned chicken thighs
175g rindless back bacon
large handful Parsley finely chopped
1.5 tbsp chopped Rosemary
1.5 tbsp chopped Thyme
2oz melted butter
1.5 tsp Salt
1.5 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon brandy
Heat the oil in a frying pan, add the onions and garlic and fry gently until soft but not browned. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and mix with the minced pork, all the herbs, cranberries and seasoning, also add brandy, butter etc, mix everything together really well – the best way of distributing the ingredients evenly is with your hands.
Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4. Put ½ the mixture into a lightly oiled 1.5 litre terrine dish or loaf tin lined with streaky bacon . Lay over the chicken thighs then add the remaining mince mix. Cover with a lid or some foil, put into a small roasting tin and pour enough hot water into the tin to come half way up the sides of the dish. Bake for 1.5 hours.
Uncover the terrine and cook for a further 15 minutes, until it is lightly coloured on top. Remove the dish from the roasting tin and leave to cool, then weight down the terrine overnight in the fridge. The easiest way to do this is to cut out a piece of cardboard that will fit inside the rim of the dish, cover it with foil, then place it on top of the terrine and place a few weights or unopened cans on top. CHILL OVERNIGHT
Chicken thighs are optional you can leave them out.
MINTED RED ONION & ORANGE QUICKIE CHUTNEY
4 Large red onions, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic finely slivered
2 tablespoons red wine, 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1 zest and juice of fresh orange
Water as necessary
8 mint leaves
2 tablespoons olive oil.
Heat the olive oil until nearly smoking, cook the onions and garlic until soft, add all other ingredients and cook slowly until beginning to caramelize, about 30 mins. Add water if too dry. Set aside.
CHESTNUT, SAUSAGE, SAGE AND ONION STUFFING. (serves about 10)
2 packs Merchant Gourmet shrink-wrapped cooked chestnuts (Tesco, Sainsbury, Waitrose). Roughly chop these.
1 large red onion, finely chopped
250 grams spicy sausage.
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage.
2 tablespoons chopped flat parsley
3 cloves finely chopped garlic.
2 free range eggs, whisked
Remove the skin from the sausages, combine all other ingrdients with the sausagemeat, thoroughly mix with your hands. Line a bread tin with bacoglide, put the mixture in right to the top, wrap tightly in foil and bake in a waterbath for about 1 hour @ 170oC. Chill overnight
SALMON FILLET WITH PESTO
2 fillets of fresh salmon, skinned weighing 6 to 8oz
1 tablespoon basil pesto
Slash each salmon fillet 3 times along the top and spread ½ the pesto over the fillet pushing the pesto into the flesh, bake in a bacoglide-lined roasting tin for 20minutes in the centre of the Aga roasting oven (200oC).
1 packet fresh basil
1 tablespoon pine nuts
4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
4 tablespoons olive oil
Maldon salt and pepper
Blitz the above and add more oil if required
4 egg yolks
1 tablespoon each White Wine Vinegar, White Wine & Lemon Juice
8oz butter, melted.
Whisk the egg yolks with the vinegar over steam for about 3 mins, don ‘t stop whisking. When the bubbles subside and the mixture thickens, take it off and wait 2 minutes. Add the butter slowly whisking fast. This sauce will keep at room temperature for about 30 minutes. Add any fresh herb well chopped (eg basil, oregano or sage or tarragon).
PORK STIR-FRY (serves 4)
1lb pork fillet, trimmed and cut into batons (small thin chip size)
2 cloves garlic, sliced
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
1 tablespoon cornflour
1 tablespoon onion jam
2 small chillies, finely slivered
2 tablespoons thinly sliced red pepper
4 spring onions, finely chopped
300 ml coconut milk
4 tablespoons cider
Add the flour to the pork rounds, toss and set aside. Put one tablespoon rapeseed oil into a wok, heat up to smoking, add the spring onion and garlic, fry 30 secs, add the, chillies and pepper. Add all the pork and cook fast about 2 mins. Add the add the coconut milk. Cook more slowly 2 mins until the pork is cooked. Finally add the coriander and serve.
GRATIN DAUPHINOISES (Serves about 6)
2lbs potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
seasalt and pepper
½ pint whipping cream
½ pint milk
8oz grated emmental cheese any cheese will do
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Bring to the boil the liquids and the potatoes. Meanwhile rub a shallow casserole with the butter. Lay garlic on top. When the potatoes etc are boiling, transfer them to the casserole and season well including some nutmeg, top with the cheese and cook at 180oC for about 1 hour, keep warm or cool and chill and re-heat the next day at 190oC fo about 20 minutes.
DARK CHOCOLATE ROULADE (serves about 16 +)
10oz caster sugar
12 free range egg
¾ pint double or whipping cream, soft whipped
Good slosh of brandy or liqueur
First separate the eggs, add the sugar to the yolks and beat until creamy, add the sifted cocoa and beat until smooth. Whisk the egg whites until soft peak, and fold them into the chocolate mixture. Line a large baking sheet with greased silicone paper and spread the mixture over the paper. Bake at around 170oC/aga baking oven for about 20 mins until spongey, cool and then sprinkle generously with the brandy, spread over the whipped cream and roll up the sponge tightly. It might crack, but don’t worry it just looks home made!! Dust with icing sugar and keep cool. You can also sprinkle the top with shaved chocolate and decorate with strawberries. Or you can melt 200 grams of dark chocolate with 100 grams butter in a bowl over simmering water and drizzle it over the top!
MINCE PIE PASTRY (Makes about 12)
275 grams plain flour
175 grams softened butter
75 grams icing sugar
25 grams ground almonds
1 egg yolk
Zest of 1 lemon
Cream the butter and sugar, add the egg, lemon zest then flour and ground almonds. Use a processor for this if you like. The mixture will be sticky, wrap and chill 30 mins before rolling. I egg wash the top of the mince pie to give it a golden glaze. Use a smaller pie cutter for the top to make it fit.
1 regular jar of good mincemeat (Robertsons is great).
1/3 jar marmalade (fine cut)
Mix the two with 1 dessertspoon brandy! Fill the tart bases and then put on the top. Bake about 20 minutes in the aga baking oven.