NEIL'S RECIPES: SCALLOPS, STORNOWAY BLACK PUDDING, CEPS AND BUTTER SAUCE

by Cafe St Honoré in


“I put this dish on at Cafe St Honoré when we receive a hoard of ceps. It always sells well and is delicious. Cook the ceps, black pudding and scallops in the same pan as all the flavours marry well, and the fat released from the black pudding adds extra flavour to the ceps and shellfish. Don’t be afraid of the butter sauce, or beurre blanc as we chefs call it. A little splash of cream stabilizes the reduction and prevents the sauce from splitting.”

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 1
Prep time: 15 minutes; cooking time 5 minutes

INGREDIENTS

2 to 3 hand-dived scallops, coral left on

1 slice of Stornoway black pudding

A small handful of ceps, lightly washed

2 peppercorns

1 sprig thyme 

1 sprig tarragon

100ml white wine

100ml white wine vinegar

1 tablespoon double cream

75g unsalted butter, 1cm cubes

A few wood sorrel leaves, optional

Good salt and pepper

Juice from half a lemon

1 tablespoon rapeseed oil

1 knob butter

METHOD

Prepare the ceps by cutting in half and scoring a criss-cross pattern on the cut sides.

Make a butter sauce by adding the wine, vinegar, peppercorns and herbs to a small pan and reducing to a couple of tablespoons. Pass through a fine sieve into a clean pan and add the cream. Whisk together and bring to just below the boil. Then add the butter one cube at a time until emulsified. Season with a pinch of salt and a squeeze of lemon. Keep at a steady temperature until needed.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in large non-stick frying pan on a high heat on the hob. Once hot, add the black pudding, scallops, ceps, Thyme and tarragon. Season the scallops and ceps. Cook everything for 2 minutes before turning. Once turned, season the scallops and ceps again with salt and pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice. Ensure the black pudding has a nice crust all over.

To serve, place the black pudding, scallops and ceps on a warmed plate. Spoon over the butter sauce and decorate with the zesty wood sorrel.


NEIL'S RECIPES: COURGETTE, BASIL AND MINT SOUP WITH OVEN-DRIED TOMATO AND ANSTER CHEESE

by Cafe St Honoré in


"This is a great way to use up these wonderful vegetables when you have a glut. The recipe is so easy and it keeps well - it’s great served chilled in small amounts on a very hot summer’s day. The extra-virgin olive oil really works here. And do use the courgette flowers as a garnish." 

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 4

Prep time: 20 minutes; Cooking time: tomatoes up to 2 hours, soup 20 minutes

INGREDIENTS

2 large courgettes, diced into rough 1-inch cubes
1 banana shallot, peeled and diced
1 clove garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
1 small handful of basil and mint leaves, roughly chopped
100g grated Anster cheese, or any other hard, crumbly cheese
2 tomatoes
100ml extra-virgin olive oil
Good salt and pepper
A few edible flowers like cornflower blue or calendula to garnish

METHOD

Heat the oven to 150°C / Gas Mark 2

Remove the eyes from the tomatoes and give them a good wash. Cut them in half and lay them on an ovenproof tray. Sprinkle with good salt and pepper and trickle over some extra-virgin olive oil. Place in the oven for between 1 and 2 hours. Remove and keep in a tub in the fridge if you wish.

Heat 50ml of the oil in a pot and sweat the shallot and the garlic until soft, then add the courgette and season with good salt and pepper. Stir and add enough boiling water to cover and a bit more.

Cook for 10 to 15 minutes until soft - don’t let it dry out – then add the herbs and blitz with a hand-blender.

Add 3/4 of the cheese and blitz again - it doesn’t need to be super-smooth. Check the seasoning. 

To serve, pour the soup into warmed bowls and add the tomatoes and the extra cheese. Garnish with some edible flowers and an extra trickle of olive oil. Serve with some good bread.


NEIL'S RECIPES: HAM HOCK TERRINE WITH PICKLED CUCUMBER

by Cafe St Honoré in


"There are two elements in this recipe. The salted hock, or knuckle, from the pig, and the pickled cucumber. Together they are astonishingly good. The sharp, sweet vegetable does its job so well to cut through the rich, salty meat. I like to add other seasonings to the flaked meat like Arran mustard and lots of curly parsley. This is where you can have fun and do your own thing. Try different herbs that you may be growing, or play with different veg to go with it. Remember to keep the stock from cooking the hocks as it makes the best soup in the world. Just add a handful of peasemeal or red lentils."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 6 to 8
Cooking time: 4 hours plus overnight; Prep time: 45 minutes

 

INGREDIENTS

3 unsmoked ham hocks

1 stick celery

2 carrots, peeled 

1 onion, peeled and halved

6 peppercorns

2 bay leaves

1 sprig thyme

2 spring onions, finely chopped

125g unsalted butter, melted

2 tablespoons curly parsley, chopped

1 tablespoon Arran mustard, or any grain mustard will do
 

 

1 cucumber

500ml good cider vinegar

500g caster sugar

500ml cold water

2 star anise 

Good salt and pepper

A few mustard seeds

A few handfuls of salad leaves

A few radishes, sliced

4 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon Arran mustard 

A splash of vinegar

METHOD

Place the hocks in a large pot and cover with cold water. Add the celery, carrots, onion, peppercorns, bay and thyme and bring to just below a rolling boil and simmer for 4 hours, skimming off any residue and adding more water if required. Don’t over boil. 

Once cooked and the meat is falling off the bone, remove the hocks from the pot and allow them to cool slightly, before flaking all the meat off the bone. Retain the celery, carrots and onion. Keep the fat for another dish and retain the stock for soup. 

Roughly chop the carrots, onion and celery from the stock pot and add them to a bowl with the flaked meat, melted butter, mustard, spring onions and parsley.  Mix thoroughly and check the seasoning. 

Line a terrine mould or plastic tub with oiled cling film - oiled side down. Pack the terrine mix into the mould and fold over the cling film so it covers the terrine entirely. Place something heavy on top to press it down and refrigerate overnight. 

To make the pickled cucumber, bring the water, sugar and vinegar to the boil then add the mustard seeds, star anise and a teaspoon of salt. Add the cucumber to the pot - you may have to halve the cucumber if it’s too long - that’s fine as it won’t affect the final taste. Cover with a lid and simmer for about an hour until the cucumber is just soft. Then turn off the heat and leave it to cool in the pickling liquid. Once cooled, cut into slices and set to one side.

Make a dressing by mixing 4 tablespoons of olive oil, one teaspoon of Arran mustard and a splash of vinegar.

To serve, place a slice of the terrine in the centre of a plate and arrange the pickled cucumber around or on top. Garnish with a few salad leaves and slices of radish trickled with the dressing. Serve at once.


NEIL'S RECIPES: OX TONGUE, WATERCRESS, RADISH, SAUCE GRIBICHE

by Cafe St Honoré in


"I’m choosing this forgotten cut of meat because it is truly delicious, and very sustainable. It’s an old-school part of an animal that’s often discarded – an ingredient from our parents’ and grandparents’ generations. I love it. In this recipe it’s simply brined overnight then gently simmered in a rich veg stock and served with the piquant gribiche. Order the tongue ahead of time from your butcher."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 6 to 8

Brining time: overnight; prep time: 40 minutes; cooking time: 4 to 6 hours

INGREDIENTS

1 organic ox or field-raised ruby veal tongue, rinsed

400ml red wine

2 sprigs of thyme

3 cloves

200g brown sugar

1 clove of crushed garlic

200ml water

250g salt

1 large carrot, peeled

1 large onion, peeled

1 stick of celery

A few parsley stalks

6 peppercorns

2 bay leaves

2 hard boiled eggs, yolks and whites chopped separately

2 tablespoons cornichons, chopped

2 tablespoon capers, chopped

2 to 3 shallots, chopped

2 tablespoons curly parsley, chopped

2 tablespoons tarragon, chopped

6 to 8 tablespoons mayonnaise

Good salt and pepper to season

2 tablespoons cold-pressed rapeseed oil

A few handfuls of watercress and red chicory

A few radishes, sliced

METHOD

Make a brine by adding the red wine, thyme, cloves, brown sugar, garlic, water and salt to a pot and bringing to a gentle simmer. Once the sugar has dissolved, leave it to cool completely for a few hours. Once cold, submerge the ox tongue in the brine and leave in the fridge or in a cool place overnight. 

Remove the tongue from the brine and give it a rinse under a cold tap. Place the tongue into a clean pan and cover with cold water. Add the carrot, onion, celery, parsley stalks, peppercorns and bay leaves and cook on a low simmer for 4 to 6 hours until tender when pierced with a skewer at the thickest point. Once cooked, allow to cool slightly then remove the skin. Either press into a terrine mould or wrap in cling film and leave to cool thoroughly.

To make the sauce gribiche, combine the eggs, cornichons, capers, shallots, parsley, tarragon and mayonnaise in a bowl and mix well. Season to taste and stir in a little rapeseed oil. 

To serve, carve a few slices of tongue per person and top with the sauce gribiche. Garnish with salad leaves and radishes, then trickle over the remaining oil or your favourite dressing and season with a little more salt and pepper.
 

 


NEIL'S RECIPES: MACKEREL WITH SHAVED FENNEL AND CAPERS

by Cafe St Honoré in


"Mackerel is one of, if not my very favourite fish and there are a lot of them out there in our oceans. Absolutely delicious pan-fried with good oil, lemon and salt. A wonderful dish to eat with a simple salad of shaved fennel, and that sharp piquant hit from the capers in the sauce. Be careful not to burn the fish when cooking. Get the non-stick pan out for this dish!"

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 1
Prep time: 10 minutes; cooking time: 4 minutes

INGREDIENTS

2 fillets of fresh mackerel, all bones removed

1/2 fennel bulb, peeled

A few salad leaves

Chopped mixed herbs, like chervil and dill

1 tablespoon mini capers

1 teaspoon chopped parsley

1 teaspoon lemon vinegar, or any fruit vinegar will do

2 tablespoons cold-pressed rapeseed oil

Juice of half a lemon

Good salt and pepper

METHOD

Make the salad by slicing the fennel on a mandolin or cutting very thinly with a knife. Add this to a bowl with the chopped parsley, vinegar, capers, 1 teaspoon of oil and season with salt and pepper. Set to one side. 

Place a non-stick pan on a moderately hot hob and heat 1 tablespoon of oil, swirling it to coat the base of the pan. Ensure the fish is dry, then carefully place the fillets skin-side-down into the hot pan. Press down lightly with a fish slice, then season with salt and pepper. Ensure the skin is in contact with the oil and doesn’t warp in the heat. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, season again, then carefully turn over and cook for 45 seconds. I prefer it to be cooked slightly under, rather than over. 

Remove the mackerel from the pan and place straight onto a plate. Garnish with the fennel salad and a few mixed leaves and herbs. Drizzle with the remaining oil and a good squeeze of lemon.

 


NEIL'S RECIPES: BREAST OF DUCK WITH ASPARAGUS, RADISH AND NEW POTATOES

by Cafe St Honoré in


"I remember one of my first jobs as a young commis chef was to pluck hundreds of game birds after a shoot on the estate I was working on. I looked like something out of Ghostbusters with a hoover on my back, goggles, and a bandana to cover my mouth from all the dusty feathers. Oh, the fun I had in the plucking shed! This dish is very simple to cook. Make sure you season the meat before, during and after cooking, and crisp the skin by cooking mainly skin-side down in a heavy pan alongside the potatoes with some thyme and garlic. Use whatever veg you like. Kale, spinach or cabbage are all excellent, but remember to use any fat rendered from the duck when you season the veg before serving."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 2
Prep time: 20 minutes; cooking time: 20 minutes

INGREDIENTS

2 free-range duck breasts
1 tablespoon cold-pressed rapeseed oil
4 to 6 spears of British asparagus, cut into 2-inch pieces
4 to 6 radishes, quartered
4 to 6 new potatoes, little sweet ones are great, scrubbed, par-boiled and halved
2 tablespoons duck fat
1 sprig of thyme
1 clove of garlic, smashed
Good salt and pepper

METHOD

Heat the oven to 180°C.

Season the breasts with good salt and pepper. Heat a pan on the hob then add the cold-pressed rapeseed oil and place the breasts skin-side-down in the pan, ensuring good contact is made between the skin and the pan. Turn over after cooking for 2 to 3 minutes and cook for a further 3 to 4 minutes. Then turn the breasts back to skin-side-down and add the thyme, garlic and potatoes to the pan and place in the oven for 8 to 10 minutes until the duck is cooked medium rare. The firmer the duck is to the touch, the more well-cooked it is. 

Meanwhile, bring a pan of water to the boil and season with salt. Add the asparagus and cook for 2 minutes on a rolling boil. 

Remove the pan from the oven, and transfer the duck breasts to a warm plate to rest. Once rested, season.

Add the radishes and the cooked asparagus to the potatoes and stir in the duck fat. The pan should still be quite hot from the oven.

To serve, either slice the duck, or leave them whole as I prefer, and place on a plate with the asparagus, potatoes and radishes as a garnish on top.


NEIL'S RECIPES: ENDIVE, PEAR, BLUE CHEESE AND WALNUT SALAD

by Cafe St Honoré in


"I adore this dish. It is simple, tasty and one I come back to again and again. The bitter salad leaves cut through the rich pear. And the sweet, candied walnuts are a joy with the rich, creamy Lanark Blue. Add a few watercress leaves for a peppery kick and serve in the middle of the table for everyone to share."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 4 in one big bowl
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cooking time : 1.5 hours including poaching pears

INGREDIENTS

2 red and 2 white endives, chicory or witloof, leaves removed and washed
2 conference pears
200g caster sugar
1 vanilla pod, split
Good salt and pepper
1 star anise
1 lemon
100g of good blue cheese, I like Lanark Blue
A handful of Californian walnuts, shelled
A few watercress leaves
Sunflower oil for shallow frying
Cold-pressed rapeseed oil for dressing

METHOD

Begin by poaching the pears. Remove the peel from each and rub with a halved lemon. Then bring a litre of water to the boil in a pan. Add half the sugar, the star anise, the split vanilla pod, the juice of half a lemon then plonk the pears into this stock syrup and poach for about an hour on a gentle boil covered with a greaseproof paper cartouche so the pears don’t oxidise during poaching. The harder the pear, the longer it will take to cook. Allow the pears to cool in the syrup. Remove the stalk and any seeds, and dice. Set to one side. 

To prepare the candied walnuts, make a stock syrup using the remaining sugar and 100ml of water and bring to the boil. Cook the walnuts in this solution for 5 to 7 minutes and allow them to cool in the syrup. Once cool, remove and drain on kitchen paper. Next, heat the sunflower in a deep frying pan and fry the walnuts until golden and crisp. Drain on kitchen paper. 

To assemble the salad, add the endive leaves to a large mixing bowl and crumble in the blue cheese. Then sprinkle over the walnuts and the diced pear. Season with good salt and pepper and a drizzle of cold-pressed rapeseed oil and a little of the syrup from the pears. Mix gently.

To serve, place the salad into a serving dish and decorate with watercress, a little more oil and syrup, a squeeze of lemon juice and a final sprinkling of salt.


NEIL'S RECIPE: WILD GARLIC GNOCCHI

by Cafe St Honoré in


"I really enjoy making these fluffy, light, little pillows of potato. The best way to make the mash is to bake the potatoes in their skins in the oven on a tray of salt. Cook until soft inside, half them, then run through a mouli or potato ricer. The mash must be dry. Don’t over work the dough or be tempted to add too much flour as they will become bullet hard after blanching. Keep them light and fluffy. I love them sautéed with butter to give a hint of texture on the outside."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 4
Prep time 40 minutes, cooking time 1.5 hours

INGREDIENTS

4 to 5 large, floury potatoes

250g plain flour, plus extra for rolling the dumplings

1 large egg

A handful of wild garlic, finely chopped

Good salt and pepper

2 tablespoons of hard cheese like a Mull or Barwheys, grated

A few knobs of butter

50ml extra virgin olive oil

1/2 bulb of fennel, shaved on a mandolin or thinly sliced with a knife

A few salad leaves

A few shavings of hard cheese like a good cheddar

A drizzle of garlic oil or pesto oil to garnish, optional

A few sliced radishes to garnish, optional

METHOD

Heat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6

Begin by baking the potatoes in their skins in the oven on a bed of salt until soft inside. This will take about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Allow to cool, then scoop out the flesh and mash.

Mix 500g of the mashed potato carefully with the plain flour, then add the egg and combine. Add the chopped wild garlic, season with salt and pepper and add the grated cheese. Mix well but be careful not to overdo it.

Roll the dough in a dusting of flour to make a long sausage shape about the width of £1 coin. Cut the gnocchi into 1-inch pieces, pinching each one as you cut.

To cook, place into a pan of salted, boiling water and cook until the gnocchi rises to the surface on a rolling boil. This should take about 2 to 4 minutes, then remove from the water and place onto a cloth.

Heat a non-stick pan and add half the olive oil and add the gnocchi. Then add the butter and colour the dumplings until they are golden and almost crispy.  Remove from the pan and season.

To serve, place several pieces of gnocchi on warmed plates with a handful of good salad, some fennel and a few shavings of hard cheese. To finish, I like to use a drizzle of wild garlic oil or the oil from any pesto. Also use some sliced radish if you like.

 


NEIL'S RECIPES: ORANGE AND ALMOND CAKE

by Cafe St Honoré in


"This recipe came to me by way of my head chef Joe, who discovered it in a Shaun Hill cook book, so thank you Shaun. Ensure you boil the oranges whole and make sure the water is topped up. It’s a simple method after that. I love serving this warm with a peat-smokey Benromach whisky ice cream - rich and decadent."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Makes one cake

Prep time 4 hours 10 minutes, cooking time 1 hour 15 minutes

INGREDIENTS

2 large oranges

6 whole eggs

300g caster sugar

250g ground almonds

1tbsp baking powder

25ml Grand Marnier

50ml water

A small handful of hazelnuts

Another 75g caster sugar

1tsp icing sugar

Candied orange peel to garnish, optional

Ice-cream to serve, optional

METHOD

Line a 10-inch spring-form high-sided cake tin with oil and greaseproof paper.

Boil the oranges whole for 4 hours then halve, remove any pips and blitz to a pulp in a food processor – this will take about 2 to 3 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 160°C.

Make a praline by adding 75g of caster sugar to a pan and melting gently, allowing it to become dark and caramel in colour. This should take 3 to 5 minutes. Then stir in the hazelnuts and pour onto an oiled, clean surface like a non-stick, heat-resistant mat or a marble work surface. Once cooled, blitz in a food processor or crush with a rolling pin.

Use an electric whisk to mix together the eggs, ground almonds, 250g of sugar and the baking powder. Then add 300g of the orange pulp and whisk again.

Pour the mix into the prepared tin and bake for 1 hour. It’s cooked when a cocktail stick comes out clean. Allow the cake time to rest in the tin.

Meanwhile, make a syrup by boiling the Grand Mariner with the remaining sugar and water and reduce by half. Prick the top of the cake with a cocktail stick and pour over the syrup using a pastry brush to ensure it fills the holes. Allow to cool.

To serve, place a slice of cake on a plate and dust with icing sugar. Place a large tablespoon of praline next to the cake and top with a scoop of ice-cream. Garnish the ice-cream with a piece of candied orange peel. We serve this in the restaurant with a delicious whisky ice-cream.

 


NEIL'S RECIPES: OYSTERS WITH WORCESTERSHIRE SAUCE AND TABASCO

by Cafe St Honoré in


"I worked in Australia 25 years ago where oysters are hugely popular. I recall a delicious dish called Oysters Kilpatrick. All the elements of that dish are included in this recipe - shellfish, bacon, Tabasco, Worcestershire sauce and others, but it’s my own take on it. It doesn’t really need much else, even lemon isn’t required, but a big Bloody Mary or a Guinness would be amazing…"

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 4
Prep time 20 minutes, cooking time 10 minutes

INGREDIENTS

Allow 3 to 6 oysters per person as a starter, 12 for a main course
150g piece of good air-dried bacon, cut into very small lardons
2 tablespoons of cold-pressed rapeseed oil
3 to 4 tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce
2 to 3 teaspoons of Tabasco sauce
A twist of pepper
Course salt to rest the shells on

METHOD

Have a go at shucking the oysters yourself. Go online and watch a tutorial, or ask your fishmonger to do it for you. Retain each oyster in half the shell.

Next, add the oil to a solid frying pan and bring to a moderate heat. Add the bacon and fry until just starting to crisp up, keeping it moving all the time. It’ll take 5 minutes or so.

Whilst the bacon cooks, turn the grill on full heat. Top each oyster with bacon and place in an oven-proof dish. To make the sauce, combine the Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco and drizzle over each oyster and place under the hot grill for 3 to 5 minutes until the bacon is crisp and the oysters are just cooked.

Serve at once on plates of course salt alongside a big salad and bread.




NEIL'S RECIPES: SHORTBREAD

by Cafe St Honoré in


"This is a Forbes family recipe, made by the sack full at this time of year, and always served on a plate for Santa - and a carrot of course for the reindeer! I remember my gran making shortbread in trays, scoring the top with a fork. It was almost soft in the middle but utterly delicious and buttery. The final dredge of sugar after baking gives it the edge. Welcoming and Scottish, and above all, very Christmassy!"

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Makes around 15 biscuits

INGREDIENTS

250g unsalted butter, diced to room temperature

125g unrefined caster sugar

300g plain flour

80g corn flour

Extra caster sugar for dredging

METHOD

Whip the butter and sugar in a mixer until light and fluffy, then gently and carefully sift in the flour and corn flour. Not whilst the machine is on! Fold in, being careful not to over mix at this stage.

Roll the dough into 2 sausage shapes, about the width of a £2 coin. Wrap in cling film and leave in the fridge overnight.

Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into 1cm-thick discs and lay on a baking tray lined with parchment and bake in pre-heated oven (135°C to 150°C) for 45 minutes, or until they start turning golden at the edges. Allow to cool, then dredge with extra sugar. 


NEIL'S RECIPES: MALLARD WITH CLAPSHOT, BRAISED RED CABBAGE AND PARSNIP

by Cafe St Honoré in


"I adore this dish. The almost sticky red cabbage is not overly sweet and has just the right amount of sharpness. The mallard breast is cooked in a pan and shown the oven for just a minute or two. Served with a little garlic, thyme and clapshot - essential in these chilly months to warm the soul."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 2

30 minutes prep time, 2 hours cooking time

INGREDIENTS

2 mallard or wild duck breasts, skin on

2 large potatoes, peeled, boiled and mashed, Roosters are good

200g turnip, peeled, diced, boiled and mashed

1/3 small red cabbage, cut thinly with a sharp knife

1 tablespoon redcurrant jelly

1 cinnamon stick

A pinch of mixed spice

A small handful of Californian raisins

1/3 apple, grated

1 star anise

1 glass of red wine

2 tablespoons of bramble vinegar

Good salt and pepper

2 small parsnips, peeled and blanched in boiling water for 2 to 3 minutes and refreshed in cold water

1 sprig thyme

1 clove garlic, halved

1 tablespoon cold-pressed rapeseed oil for frying

50g butter, diced into 1cm cubes

Around 100ml stock for reducing, chicken, game or beef will do

METHOD

Heat oven to 180°C

Begin by placing the shredded cabbage, jelly, cinnamon, spice, raisins, grated apple, star anise, red wine (leave a small amount in the glass for later) and vinegar into a large pot, season and place onto the hob on a moderate heat with the lid on. Leave for around 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Do not let it burn, if it looks like it’s getting too hot, turn down the heat and add a splash of water.

Prepare the clapshot by combining the mashed potatoes and turnip whilst they are still hot. Season with salt, a lot of pepper and nearly all the butter, leaving some for the mallard. Keep to one side in a warm place.

Heat the oil in an oven-proof frying pan and place the mallard breasts in the pan skin side down, alongside the parsnips, thyme and garlic and begin to caramelise the duck and parsnips together. Add a knob of butter and season. Turn the duck and parsnips over after a couple of minutes, then place the pan in the oven for a minute or two.

Remove from the oven and place the duck on a plate to rest. Continue to fry the parsnips if they need colour.

Deglaze the frying pan with the remaining red wine until it reduces and incorporates all the bits of roasting goodness from the pan. Then add some stock, and reduce again for a few minutes until the sauce is rich and dark. Add a knob of butter and incorporate.

To plate up, place a spoonful of red cabbage on each plate and add a dollop of clapshot alongside. Then carve the mallard on a slant giving 6 to 8 slices from each breast, and place that from the knife on to the plate. Lean the parsnip on the clapshot and garnish with a trickle of sauce.

 


CHAMPAGNE COCKTAIL IN 5 EASY STEPS

by Cafe St Honoré in


We're getting in the mood for Christmas with this simple seasonal cocktail. Fresh and elegant, it's the perfect sipper this winter. Full recipe below...

WEB SIZE (Credit - Paul Johnston at Copper Mango)-CMPL5135.jpg

STEP ONE

PREPARE THE GARNISH

WEB SIZE (Credit - Paul Johnston at Copper Mango)-CMPL5137.jpg

STEP TWO

SHAKE THE SLOE SYRUP AND GIN OVER ICE IN A COCKTAIL SHAKER

WEB SIZE (Credit - Paul Johnston at Copper Mango)-CMPL5143.jpg

STEP THREE

SINGLE STRAIN INTO A CHILLED CHAMPAGNE FLUTE

WEB SIZE (Credit - Paul Johnston at Copper Mango)-CMPL5152.jpg

STEP FOUR

TOP WITH CHAMPAGNE

WEB SIZE (Credit - Paul Johnston at Copper Mango)-CMPL5158.jpg

STEP FIVE

TOP GLASS WITH GARNISH AND ENJOY!

For the Sloe Syrup:

500g sloe berries, 250g sugar, 250ml water

Bring to the boil together in a pan and simmer until glossy and reduce by a third. Cool. Strain the contents through a sieve.

For the Cocktail:

20ml sloe syrup, 20ml gin, champagne to top up, orange peel to garnish

IMAGES: COPPER MANGO


NEIL'S RECIPES: BUTTERMILK PUDDING WITH SPICED PLUM CRUMBLE

by Cafe St Honoré in


"This pudding is similar to panna cotta but way better. The recipe comes from a chef at Ballintaggart Farm, a wonderful place in the Perthshire hills, who scribbled this recipe down for me when working at Cafe St Honoré for a few days. Served here with gently roasted plums and a crunchy crumble topping with a hint of spice. Remember to cool the pudding in the jug in the fridge and stir occasionally before pouring into the mould otherwise the vanilla seeds will sink to the bottom."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 4
Prep time 1 hour, cooking time 45 minutes

INGREDIENTS

500ml buttermilk
200ml double cream
1 vanilla pod, split and seeds removed

6 ½ leaves of gelatine
150g unrefined caster sugar
4 plums, halved and stones removed
50g plain flour
50g jumbo oats
40g dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon of mixed spice

25g butter
1 teaspoon of honey
Edible flowers, optional

METHOD

Soak the gelatine in cold water until soft.

Bring the buttermilk, cream, sugar and vanilla to the boil on the hob. Turn off the heat and leave for few minutes to extract the vanilla flavour.

Add the gelatine to the pot and mix well. Pass through a fine sieve into a jug. Place the jug in the fridge to cool for 45 minutes, removing every few minutes to whisk.

Once cool, pour into dariole moulds or tea cups and chill in the fridge for a good 5 to 6 hours or overnight.

Heat the oven to 180°C.

To make the crumble, mix the dry ingredients, honey and butter together. Arrange the halved plums in an oven-proof dish and top with the crumble mixture. Bake in the oven for 20 to 40 minutes, or until the plums are soft and the crumble has browned. Serve warm along side the chilled buttermilk puddings. Garnish with a few edible flowers.

 

 


NEIL'S RECIPES: ROAST PARTRIDGE, CONFIT LEG, WATERCRESS, CRAB APPLE JELLY

by Cafe St Honoré in


"Partridge is a great bird to cook. I like to remove the legs before roasting the crowns so the legs can be cooked longer either by roasting or confiting in duck fat. The splash of Madeira in the pan to glaze the breasts and of course a bit of butter for extra richness is great. Try this with bread sauce, a classic with roasted game birds."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 4

Prep time 30 minutes, cooking time 2 hours

INGREDIENTS

4 grey or red legged partridge, legs removed

4 bunches of watercress, washed200g crab apples, washed and cut into pieces

200g unrefined caster sugar

1 glass Madeira

250ml pint of good beef or chicken stock

250ml pint duck fat,1 tablespoon cold-pressed rapeseed oil

2 knobs of butter

Good salt and pepper

METHOD

Begin by making the crab apple jelly. Place the apples in a pot and cover with water. Bring to the boil and simmer for about an hour until the fruit is soft and mushy. 

Pass through a fine sieve into a clean pan and add the sugar. Bring to the boil carefully - it will splutter like jam - stirring continuously on a moderate heat for about an hour until the mix has thickened and has turned a deep red. It may take a while longer. 

Allow to cool then chill the jelly in the fridge for a day. This jelly is also excellent with cheese, like a quince paste. 

Heat the oven to 180°C.

Next, confit the partridge legs by submerging them in the duck fat in a pan on a on a low heat. When starting to boil, place in the oven for a couple of hours. 

Next, roast the partridge crowns. Place an oven-proof frying pan on the hob and add the oil. Fry the partridge all over for a few minutes then add some butter and allow the meat to brown. Season with salt and pepper and place in the oven for 5 to 7 minutes until just golden, remove from the pan and allow to rest in a warm place for 5 to 7 minutes.

To make a sauce, add the Madeira to the same frying pan and deglaze by bringing it to the boil and reducing by two thirds. Then add the stock and reduce again by two thirds. Add a knob of butter and check the consistency and seasoning. 

To serve, remove the breasts from the bone and place the drained legs on top. Spoon the sauce over the meat and garnish with watercress and a dollop of crab apple jelly. Serve with a bread sauce if desired.


NEIL'S RECIPES: SUMMER PUDDING

by Cafe St Honoré in


"This is a great recipe for using the frozen berries we harvested throughout the summer. It’s important to use blackcurrants for this dish as they give the bread a deep colour and a wonderful summery taste. I like to serve this with extra-thick double cream, but ice-cream will do. Ensure you use enough sugar, otherwise it can end up being a tad tart."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 4

20 minutes prep, 20 minutes cooking

INGREDIENTS

4 to 6 slices of white bread, the best you can find, not too thickly cut, crusts removed

4 handfuls of blackcurrants

4 handfuls of redcurrants

8 large strawberries, tops removed

A handful of brambles

A handful of raspberries

Extra berries for garnish

2 to 3 tablespoons of caster sugar

1/2 a vanilla pod, split and seeds scraped out

4 dollops of extra-thick double cream

METHOD

Firstly line 4 dariole moulds or tea cups with oiled cling film. I would suggest using 2 to 3 layers.  Line the moulds with the bread to create an outer layer, leaving a piece of bread for the top of each pudding. Set to one side.

Now, give the berries a good wash and place them in a pot with the sugar and vanilla. Place on a gentle heat and bring to a simmer. Turn up the heat a little and boil for a few minutes until all the berries have softened. 

Remove the pan from the heat and tip the berries into a sieve, returning the liquid to the boil to reduce by half. Place the berries in the centre of the lined moulds and seal with a piece of bread.

Once the berry juice has reduced, pour it over the puddings, ensuring the liquid stains the bread. Reserve 2 tablespoons for serving. Wrap the cling film over to seal and place a weight on top. Pop into the fridge overnight. 

To serve, turn out the puddings onto plates and garnish with a few berries and the reduced berry juice. Serve with extra-thick double cream.

 


NEIL'S RECIPES: SALAD OF HERITAGE TOMATOES, CROWDIE, PESTO AND CROUTONS

by Cafe St Honoré in


"As a keen gardener I think home-grown tomatoes are the best in the world. I tasted one yesterday that was like a peach - fruity and sweet. Married with a cheese of any kind, tomatoes taste great, and here I’ve used a sweet, creamy, almost crumbly crowdie. Perfect alongside the pesto. So easy to do, and a real show stopper."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 4
10 minutes prep, 20 minutes cooking

INGREDIENTS

4 to 6 tablespoons crowdie

Around 6 or 7 different varieties of tomatoes, or home-grown

A small handful of fresh basil

A few lightly-toasted pine nuts, or hazelnuts

2 tablespoons grated Parmesan or a good British hard cheese, even a good cheddar is fine

2 cloves garlic, peeled

250ml extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for the croutons

A few thyme leavesGood salt and pepperSome stale bread, ideally a loaf from the previous day

A few salad leaves and slices of radish

METHOD

Heat the oven to 165°C.

Begin by making the croutons. Slice the stale bread into wafer-thin shards, and trickle with some olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, a few thyme leaves and bake on an oven tray for around 20 minutes until just crisp. Allow to cool. 

Next, make the pesto by placing the nuts, cheese, oil and garlic in a liquidiser and blitzing for a few seconds. Add the basil leaves and continue to whizz for a few more seconds. I sometimes use a pestle and mortar to make pesto.

Remove the eyes from the tomatoes and cut them into slices and arrange on plates. Add some dollops of crowdie and trickle over some pesto. You will have some left over for another day. Arrange the shards of croutons and scatter a few salad leaves and slices of radish as a garnish. Finish with a pinch of good salt and pepper.
 


NEIL'S RECIPES: GARDEN PEA SOUP WITH SCALLOPS AND BACON

by Cafe St Honoré in


"The warm, sweet, seared scallops contrast superbly with the chilled soup. It’s similar to a Spanish gazpacho but a bit lighter. Great on a hot day if you are eating outside in the garden, and so easy to do. Instead of scallops, try a mix of brown and white crab meat mixed with a little mayo. I always say this, but please don’t be tempted by cheap scallops. Buy hand-dived and ask where they came from."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 4

15 minutes prep, 20 minutes cooking

INGREDIENTS

1 medium-sized onion, peeled and thinly sliced

2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed

750ml vegetable or chicken stock, or water is fine

250g shelled, podded peas

1-2 tablespoons of cream, optional

4 hand-dived Isle of Mull scallops, cleaned and out of shell

1 small handful of chunky lardons of unsmoked bacon

2 tablespoons cold-pressed rapeseed oil

1 knob of butterA few mint leaves

Good salt and pepper

A few salad leaves and edible flowers

METHOD

Heat the butter and half oil on a pot, then add the onion and garlic and sweat down very gently for a few minutes, without colouring. Season with salt and pepper, and when softened, add the stock and bring to the boil.

Simmer for a few minutes, then add the peas and cook for 4 to 5 minutes until softened. Season again, and add the mint leaves then blitz carefully in a liquidiser until smooth. Add some cream if you like, or more stock to make it easier to blitz. Pass the soup through a fine sieve to ensure it’s rich and silky. Keep in a warm place.

Heat the remaining oil in a frying pan and fry the scallops. Season in the pan and cook for a minute or two on each side. As you are frying the scallops, add in the bacon lardons and fry these too. Season as you go. Remove from the pan when just cooked. 

To serve, pour the soup into warmed bowls and place a scallop in the centre of each bowl. Scatter over the lardons of bacon and garnish with a few salad leaves and edible flowers.

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THE PERFECT ROAST CHICKEN IN 10 STEPS

by Cafe St Honoré in


We all love a roast chicken, but how many of us are confident about cooking it perfectly? Our Chef Director Neil Forbes is here to show you how.

Every Sunday Neil roasts a chicken at home for the family dinner, served with seasonal veg from the garden. So follow Neil's 10 steps, and you too can create the perfect roast, every time!


NEIL'S RECIPES: FILLET OF HALIBUT WITH SAMPHIRE AND CHANTERELLES

by Cafe St Honoré in


"Get your fishmonger to do the hard work and fillet the fish for you. As an alternative to halibut, try hake, or smoked haddock works well. Fish goes really well with chanterelles and it’s the start of the mushroom season here in Scotland, so these vibrant orange fungi are easily foraged. If you do go picking, be careful and make sure you know what you are doing. Salty samphire brings all the flavours together nicely. It grows wild on coastal marsh areas in East Lothian but you should get permission from the landowner before any form of foraging."

Image: Paul Johnston,  Copper Mango

Image: Paul Johnston, Copper Mango

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS

4 175g halibut fillets, farmed Gigha Halibut is great
1 handful of British samphire, washed
2 handfuls of chanterelles mushrooms, cleaned
A few flowers from the garden, I like nasturtium leaves and flowers, borage is pretty too
2 tablespoons of rapeseed oil
150g butter
Juice of a lemon, some fennel fronds, optional
Good salt and pepper

Season the fish all over. Heat a frying pan and a pot on the hob, bringing both to moderate heat. Add the oil to the frying pan and leave for a couple of minutes. Then add half the butter and the mushrooms to the pot, followed by the samphire and season. Keep tossing being careful not to burn the butter.

Meanwhile, check the fish. It should be starting to turn golden brown on the underside. Once it is, turn each fillet over and continue cooking. Add the remaining butter to the frying pan. It will start to froth and become lovely and nut brown in colour. Season the fish again and squeeze in the lemon juice, a few drops at a time. If you like, add some fennel fronds at this stage, as they will flavour the butter well.

When the mushrooms and samphire are just soft, season again and spoon into the centre of four warmed plates. Place the fish on top and decorate with the flowers and a few more drops of lemon.