Monday, 13 January 2014

Savoury Sunday

This weekends challenge was to use up those 11 egg yolks left over from the Angel Food Cake, so after a bit of research, and rummaging around my cook books, I decided to adapt a Hairy Dieters recipe and make their Asparagus & Bacon Flan (I've only just seen this picture from the website as I was using their book - I suddenly realise that the crust looks somewhat different to mine!). Well, that was the basic plan...however...I decided to adapt it some what to suit what I had available in the kitchen. This is the first time I've really gone quite off-piste! I took the very basic recipe, aka the filo pastry, and then completely made up the filling and the eggy mix! And fair play, it actually wasn't too bad!

So....I took their basic idea of using the filo pasty for the base and then made the rest of it up. I had some bacon, peppers, mushrooms (just on the edge of turning, but you really can't ever waste a mushroom!), also some onions. I was tempted to add courgettes, but didn't want to overfill the mix.

I've not worked with filo pastry before - it's quite a challenge to unwrap is isn't it? Once I'd finally unfolded all the layers, and stopped accidently ripping it, it wasn't too bad. I've got some left - so that should e a mini challenge for the week :)

I then prompted to make the white sauce - which sadly took two attempts (the first just became a rather unglamorous all of gloop....why??) The 2nd attempt, well that also glooped, but not so much so I took my chances and used what wasn't glooped (the rest stuck to the spoon, so was easy to separate!) I added to this the er *coff* 11 egg yolks, rather than the 3 eggs suggested by the recipe, and mixed them all together. When it came to putting the pastry into the flan tin, I realised that I didn't even have a 20cm, ut more like 23 and a bit - so the extra liquid came in useful in the end.

I did chuckle when it came to the part that said "Scatter the remaining asparagus and bacon mixture on top and press down lightly", as it was just liquid - not really a whole lot of pressing down required: 

I then carefully manoeuvred it to the oven, trying not to trip, spill or having any other bake-off related disasters and left it there to bake. I lurked around the kitchen for a good 10 mins staring in the oven hoping it would all be OK, before I decided I couldn't will it to work and wandered off around the house.

I came back 20 mins later, to find that it wasn't quite the disaster I was expecting, and this was the end result:

I really should have done a taste test before relying on it for work, but here's the slice in my lunch box today:

and the verdict? really rather yummy!! Unlike most of my bakes, I think I'll be keeping this one for myself - this week will be forever known as quiche week!! :)

So what have I learnt from this? Well, this is probably my first baking disaster in a while. Although the end result was lovely, I really do need to work on those sauce making skills. I'll certainly stocking up on some more cornflower and giving them a few goes.  I've also really enjoyed working with filo pastry, I don't think I've ever done that before, so I've been exploring some other recipes and might try a cheese and roasted veg parcel at some point in the future. So there will definitely be some more savoury baking coming up in the future!

I then ended the weekend with a trip out to see my friend, and to watch my newly aquired Julie and Julia dvd. We both saw it at the cinema a long time ago, but thought a drizzly Sunday afternoon activity was to munch on the last bit of angel food cake that I'd made, and the ginger biscuits she'd made, sup tea, scoff home made bread rolls (not my creation - but really rather scrummy) and watch the dvd. Lovely afternoon, and perfect was to end the weekend!

Next challenge? Well, I've been asking some of my taste testers at work for some suggestions, and I've had a request for a swiss roll, and for a genoese sponge - am tempted to combine the two - would that work?

1 comment:

  1. White sauce is easy if you follow my tips. Warm the milk up first before adding to the roux. I have different recipes for making it depending on how thick you want/need it - one is to simmer milk and then add in premixed butter and flour and whisk fast. The other is to melt butter, add flour, mix together and then slowly add warmed milk, stirring or whisking all the time. And you can always sieve the lumps out!