On this page, we have collected a bunch of those quick preparations that sometimes require une aide à la mémoire, but do not warrant a standalone recipe. We keep these at home in a ‘little black book’, but we are putting them online, not only to share with you, but also to remind ourselves.
AKA beurre d’ Aveline or beurre noisette. Blend 100g blanched and toasted (or roasted and peeled) hazelnuts with 2.5ml water until paste. Combine with 250g unsalted butter and pass through a fine sieve.
175g brown sugar, 300ml double cream, 50g butter, half tsp salt. Heat the whole lot over low until sugar dissolves. Up the heat and bubble until syrup. Cool to store. Serve warm, but not hot.
Parboil. Fry 130˚C 6 mins. Fry 190˚C 2 mins. Chill or freeze between steps.
Tart fruit, sugar, vinegar and lemon. Cook and cool. Can add ginger, tamarind, garlic, onion, salt, fenugreek, coriander etc.
600ml whipping cream (chilled), 30g caster, vanilla to taste.
25g plain flour, 80g caster sugar, pinch salt, 7g unsalted butter, 2 eggs, 1 vanilla pod, 250ml milk. Flour, sugar, salt, butter and eggs in a heavy saucepan; work with whisk until combined. Heat milk in a saucepan with vanilla pod until it boils. Add milk to the dough, stir well and boil moderately for a few minutes, stirring constantly. Remove the crème to an earthenware dish to cool, stirring occasionally.
Crêpes, Escoffier A (with less sugar)
Blender will over-activate gluten. Use a hand whisk.
170g flour, pinch salt, 110g butter, 55g sugar, rub (do not process as it will be too fine).
Fruit base: 400g tart fruit, 75g caster, 2tbsp cornflour. 45mins @ 200˚C.
Crumpets, sourdough trash
By James Hillery and Hobbs House Bakery. Mix 270g sourdough feed discard with 1 tbsp clear honey or maple syrup, half a tsp of salt and half a tsp of bicarb. Griddle in oiled crumpet rings in an oiled pan until the edges brown. Remove ring and flip to finish.
Curry sequence, Atul Kochhar
Whole spices -> onions -> ginger-garlic paste -> powdered spices -> tomatoes.
Eggs, poached Berner’s Tavern
62˚C 50 mins in the shell. Cool rapidly in iced water. Boil water and crack coddled eggs into simmering water and heat for 1 minute.
Egg yolk, confit
Immerse an egg yolk devoid of white in olive oil (possibly flavoured, e.g garlic, herbs, chilli, truffle) for 1h at 65˚C. A bain marie in a water bath is the most accurate method.
Star anise, cloves, cinnamon, Sichuan pepper (like coriander) and fennel seeds.
Flatbreads, Ian Haste ‘naan’ style
260g self-raising flour, 2 tsp sugar, 1tsp baking powder, big pinch of salt, mix. Combine 250ml (1 USA cup) yoghurt into a dough, adding tiny bit of milk if needed. Knead in the bowl until the sides clean. Roll out, press in flavourings (e.g. garlic slices, cumin seeds, nigella seeds, coriander). Griddle until ‘giraffed.’ Brush with melted butter and sprinkle a bit of sea salt.
150g each of softened unsalted butter, caster and ground almonds, 3 eggs, 1 tsp almond extract. Cream the eggs and sugar. Beat in eggs one at a time. Stir in nuts and flavourings. Add a half a tsp of baking powder to lighten for e.g. Bakewell. Add squeeze of lemon if liked (also for Bakewell).
200g crème patisserie, 100g softened butter, 100g caster sugar, 100g ground almonds, few drops of vanilla extract, 1 tbsp Navy rum. Mix the softened butter, sugar almonds vanilla and rum. Mix in the crème pâtisserie until smooth.
Break up a head of garlic into cloves, unpeeled. Wrap in foil with oil, and roast in an oven at 180˚C for 20 mins. Peel to serve.
1 tbsp of gelatine (1 Dr Oetker sachet) will gel 500ml water. 4 leaves of gelatin = 1 tbsp gelatin, and will also set 500ml. Bloom before use and always add to hot liquid to prevent ‘roping.’
Heat unsalted butter in a pan; allow it to bubble to cook the solids; skim off the whey proteins that float to the surface; cool a little to solidify the solids a bit more; filter through a coffee filter to obtain the clear, yellow ghee.
Goose, cooking times
Single layer. 180˚C for 15 mins, Rub with towel to remove skins.
Classic French lunch sandwich. Baguette split and spread with butter. Fill with slices of good quality ham.
Juilienne the white part of leeks as fine as possible. Deep fry 180˚C until crispy. Dry on a paper towel. Season with salt immediately before serving.
1:60g egg whites:caster sugar. Whisk to soft peaks. Bake on parchment 200˚C 1 hour, and then switch off the oven and allow the meringues to cool in the oven.
Bunch of mint chopped with salt to break down. Pour over 4 tbsp boiling water. Add 4 tbsp white wine vinegar and 1tbsp caster sugar. Steep.
Peeled pearl onions/shallots, 100ml water/stock, sugar, butter. Cook with cartouche until almost dry.
Shaved (not grated) parmesan on a silicone-lined baking tray. Bake 200˚C 3–5 mins. Shape while warm. Cool. Do not try to cut the cooled cheese – the crisps will shatter.
100g Petra 7220 granpasta flour and 1 egg per person. No salt, but cook pasta in ‘mild seawater.’ Full instructions here.
Pasta di ortica (nettles)
100g Petra 7220 granpasta flour and 1 egg per person. No salt, but cook pasta in ‘mild seawater. Prepare egg by boiling nettles 25 mins, squeeze dry in a cloth, blend with the egg and pass. See Pasta, basic for link to full instructions for the base product.
100g Petra 7220 granpasta flour and 1 egg per person. No salt, but cook pasta in ‘mild seawater. Prepare egg by wilting spinach or basil, squeeze dry in a cloth, blend with the egg and pass. See Pasta, basic for link to full instructions for the base product.
2:1 ratio flour:fat. Pinch of salt and minimal liquid (egg and/or water). Flour is self-raising if using suet as the fat. 200g flour, 100g butter, 1 egg, 1 egg yolk, pinch salt, minimal water to bring together. Process. No chill. Roll, drop in to oil-sprayed, paper-lined tin with pull tab, fold over top, press in with scrap pastry, prick base, blind bake with triple layer of cling wrap and beans on a pizza stone 190˚C 25 mins, remove beans, make 2 hols, bake 6 mins, patch holes with scrap (can egg wash and dry 2 mins in oven if needed). Shave edge off with blade. Brush edge with egg, fill, bake per recipe. Masterclass here.
2:1:0.75 ratio flour:fat:sugar. Pinch of salt and minimal liquid (egg and/or water). 200g flour, 100g butter, 75g sifted icing sugar, pinch salt, 1 egg, 1 egg yolk (zest of a lemon can be added). Process Roll flat, wrap and chill 1h. Roll quickly, pick up over rolling pin, drop in to oil-sprayed, paper-lined tin with pull tab, press in with scrap pastry, fold over top, prick base, line with triple layer of cling wrap and beans. Freeze 30 mins. Bake on a pizza stone 190˚C 10 mins and trim. Remove beans and bake 20 mins. Egg brush and bake 10 mins. Thanks to chef Robert Thompson for the chill steps.
200g cooked or cured fish blitzed with same weight in creamy dairy and/or mayo. Flavour with herbs and citrus. For chunky pate, blitz half the fish and then flake in the rest.
Peppers, sweet and sour Gordon Ramsay
Sliced red peppers, red onion and olive oil in a hot pan. Season. Add 1 tbsp sugar to caramelise a bit. Add red wine vinegar to glaze. Reduce heat, add more oil and stew for a few mins. Add basil chiffonade, cook 30 seconds and serve.
100g strong flour, 50ml water, pinch salt and a quarter tbsp olive oil per person. Cook pasta in ‘mild seawater.’
Thinly slice or shave veg. Balance vinegar and sugar while heating. Cover veg with liquid and cool. Add chilli, peppercorns, whole spices and herbs as fit. Chill.
Boil potatoes and rice them. Add melted butter taste. Season. Add milk or cream to desired consistency.
Prick with fork. Oil and salt. Directly on wire shelf at 190˚C for 1h.
Beef: 200˚C, 20mins, then 160˚C for 20 mins/500g (medium) or 15 mins/450g (rare).
Lamb, leg: 200˚C, 15 mins/500g and 20 mins extra.
Pork: 220˚C 30 mins, then 190˚C 25 mins/500g.
Rice, boiled Atul Kochhar
1:10 rice to water, salt (75g rice per person). Boil 7 mins until just past ‘Italian al dente.’
Rice, pilau Atul Kochhar
1:1 w/w rice:water. Sauté cardamom, cloves and chopped onion in butter and add a dollop of yoghurt. Sauté the rice in a little butter and oil for 1 min. Add the water and boil. When you can see the top of the rice emerging from the water, cover the rice with a wet towel and lid. Put the covered pan in an oven for 10 minutes, or leave on a very low heat on the hob. Then, leave covered for 15 minutes off the heat.
Rinse rice in a sieve until the water runs basically clear. 1 mug of rice to 2 mugs of cold water in a cold pan serves 2–3 people (or half a pint of rice to one pint water). Bring to boil, move to very low, cover and cook for 15 mins. Turn the heat off, still covered for another 10–15 mins.
350g rice = 1L stock. Serves 4. Have extra stock handy.
Sauce, sweet and sour
Pineapple juice, rice vinegar, sugar, soy sauce, ketchup.
Shallots, fried Tim Lovejoy
Roast unpeeled banana shallots for 40 mins in foil. Cool, split and fry in fryer until crisp.
Sorbet, mulled wine
Chill a bottle of shop-bought mulled wine and pour it into an ice cream maker. Churn to sorbet, box and freeze.
Carcass/giblets (no liver), split carrots and celery, halved onion, peppercorns, thyme, bay, parsley stalks. 7l water. Simmer until stops getting tastier. Cool overnight, skim, bag and freeze.
1:1:1 w:w:w fruit, caster sugar and water. Dissolve sugar over heat. Add fruit, mash up and steep 1h. Strain with jelly bag (squeeze), bottle and refrigerate.
1:1:1 v:v:v herbs, caster sugar and water. Boil 1 min, cool and strain.
1:1 v:v caster sugar and water. Heat until the sugar dissolves, cool.
250ml sugar, 250ml water, 1 vanilla pod, split. Heat until the sugar dissolves, cool.
4, 4, 3, 2, 1 tbsps of soy, mirin, demerara sugar, rice vinegar and toasted sesame oil; 2cm ginger, grated. Heat to dissolve sugar and reduce by half.
Turkey, cooking times
Yorkshire puddings, volumetric method
Equal volumes flour, eggs and milk. Pinch of salt. Mix and cook in mad hot beef or goose dripping at 200˚C until done (about 15–20 mins). Each egg makes 2 yorkies.