Miss Lunch’s Corner – March 2012

Waffles with Pears in Wine and Poached Pears

Waffles with Pears in Wine and Poached Pears
serves 6
For the sorbet:

625 ml Refosco
1 cinnamon stick
3 whole cloves
50 g sugar
7 Comice orAnjou, pears, peeled and cut in half

1. Put all the ingredients together in a pan and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and let simmer for about 30 minutes.
2.Miz with a hand held blender all but four pear halves.
3. Allow the sorbet to cool and then pour into an ice cream maker and proceed to make the sorbet.
4. Keep the pear halves in the fridge, covered with saran.

The waffle batter:
3 g de instant yeast
500 ml lukewarm whole milk
300 g flour, sifted
1 pinch salt
1 egg
3 eggs, the yolks and whites separated
35 g sugar
120 g unsalted butter, melted and at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 Tablespoons Cognac

Icing sugar for dusting when about to serve

1. In a small bowl put the yeast with 60 ml of warmed milk. Allow to proof 5 min.
2. In a large bowl, mix together the flour and salt. Make a well and add the yeast and milk mixture, the one egg and the rest of the milk. Mix well together with a large whisk, and then add the three yolks.
3. Add the melted butter, the vanilla and Cognac and mix well.
4. Beat the egg whites until firm and fold them into the bowl with the yeast and flour mixture. Cover with a cloth and let rise in a warm place for an hour.
5. Make the waffles in a waffle iron, they should be slightly crisp. Keep a few for to accompany the dessert and the rest keep for breakfast or keep them in foil and freeze them.

To serve:
Re-heat the waffles in the oven. Take out the bowl of pear halves and cut them into sixths. Divide the sorbet into six small ice cream bowls, add a slice of pear and some waffle halves dusted with icing sugar.


Miss Lunch’s Corner – February 2012

Rolled and Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Smoked Scamorza, Speck, and Curry, in Prosecco

Serves 6
3, 250g chicken breasts, opened and slightly hammed to flatten
A few sprinklings of Pul Biber (that nice hot chili I like so much !)
6 thin slices Speck ham
1 Smoked Scamorza
3 Teaspoons curry
2 Tablespoons flour
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
4 Tablespoons unsalted butter
Freshly ground pepper and Fleur de Sel
1 bottle Prosecco brut

1. Lay out each flattened chicken breast, cut side on the inside and sprinkle with some Pul Biber.
2. Divide the Scamorza into three pieces lengthwise and then into slivers. Wrap two pieces of Speck around a third of the pieces of cheese. Place in the middle of each chicken breast and roll up tightly. String up like you would a roast with one piece of string. Use another piece to close up each end.
3. In a large flat bowl or platter, mix the flour and 2 teaspoons of the curry together. Roll the chicken pieces in this mixture, patting down to get it nice and covered,
4. Melt the butter with the oil in a nice large pan on medium high heat. Add the rolled chicken pieces and brown on all sides, about 7 minutes.
5. Add quickly another teaspoon of curry in the bubbling hot butter and oil, sprinkle on some Fleur de sel and freshly ground pepper and pour over the bottle of Prosecco.
6. Cover and cook 15 minutes, turning the pieces occasionally.
7. When cooked, remove each roll at a time, remove the string and cut into inch thick pieces. Keep the sauce on low while you do this, as it will thicken up. Serve the pieces on warm plates with a little of the sauce and maybe some nice gnocchi!

Miss Lunch’s Corner – January 2012

Pears in Wine

6 pears, peeled, stems in tact
¼ Cup sugar
1 bottle Merlot
1/3 Cup crème de cassis
1 small sprig rosemary
3 grains long pepper
5 cloves
1 cinnamon stick
2 bay leaves

In a pot, big enough to hold the six pears, add all the ingredients but the pears and heat to dissolve the sugar and steep the spices. Add the pears and cook over medium for 30 minutes. Allow to cool and keep overnight in the fridge.

Serve one pear per person with a good ladle full of the wine mixture and drizzle a little cashew cream on top.

Cashew Cream

½ Cup unsalted cashews
1 Cup water

Put the cashews with half the water in a mixer with the blade attachment. Process until coarsely chopped. Through the funnel attachment slowly add the rest of the water. Continue processing until well blended, add a little more water if too thick.
Keeps in the fridge 3-4 days, add a little more water again if mixture has thickened.

Miss Lunch’s Corner – December 2011

Wild Hare in Refosco

They say rabbit is the new chicken, well, it is! But hare is the new ME! It’s gorgeous dark red, almost black meat will perfume your kitchen with an almost naughty gaminess as it marinates in enchanting Refosco for 2 and a half days. The trick to this recipe is long marinating and cooking.

Serves 6

1 hare, cut into pieces
3 litres Refosco
Butter and olive oil for sautéing
1 carrot, onion and 1 branch celery chopped
2- 0.5cm slices pancetta, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon Rabelais
1 bird’s eye chilli, crushed
A couple little branches fresh thyme and sage
1 small tin tomato concentrate
½ C homemade tomato sauce
¼ Cup port wine
2 Tablespoons red currant jelly
1 Tablespoon softened unsalted butter mixed with 1-tablespoon flour
Salt and freshly ground pepper

1. Marinate all the hare pieces in the wine for 2 and a half days.
2. Take out each piece and pat dry. Heat a large frying pan with a knob of butter and some olive oil. Sauté each piece of hare on each side, take your time to nicely brown them. Remove each piece to a large platter and season with a little salt and some pepper.
3. As you sauté the hare, reduce all the wine from the marinade by a good 2 Cups or so, by keeping it on a steady boil. About 30 minutes.
4. Pre-heat the oven to 165°C
5. In the same frying pan you used for the hare pieces, sauté the carrot, onion and celery together, until soft. Set aside. Sauté the pancetta pieces briefly until lightly brown.
6. In a large glass Pyrex pan, place all the hare pieces, the sautéed vegetables and pancetta, the Rabelais, fresh herbs chilli, tomato concentrate and sauce. Pour over all the hot reduced wine and cover tightly with aluminium foil. Place in the oven and cook for 3 hours, turning the pieces over twice during cooking.
7. About half an hour before you are ready to serve this dish, remove all the hare pieces and keep in a warm oven, covered with the foil. Drain all the leftover wine, discarding the herbs, vegetables and pancetta.
8. In a small saucepan put the wine, port and jelly and bring to a boil. Slowly whip in bit by bit the butter/flour mixture and continue to allow the sauce to cook and thicken slowly. Taste for seasoning.
9. Serve with a little of the sauce drizzled over a piece of hare, a nice grilled slice of polenta and a few sautéed mushrooms.

Miss Lunch’s Corner – November 2011

Pheasant Hen with Wine and Quince

Pheasant Hen with Wine and Quince
Serves 4

2 pheasant hens, carved into four pieces, carcass set aside
4 teaspoons Rabelais spices (http://www.epices-rabelais.com)
8 Tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 quinces, cut in fourths, core removed
10 Cups Cabernet Borgo Rui
2/3 Cup sugar
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon flour

In a 25cm diameter sized saucepan put 5 cups of the wine, the sugar, 2 teaspoons of the Rabelais spices and the quince pieces. Bring to a boil and lower the heat to simmer. Reduce the liquid, turning the quinces from time to time for 2 hours.
Place the hen carcasses in a large saucepan and cover with the remaining 5 Cups wine. Add the bay leaves and salt. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat. Let simmer for n hour and a half.
Strain the wine carcass liquid into the quince and wine preparation, keep at a simmer.
An hour before you are ready to eat, mix together the other 2 teaspoons of Rabelais spices with 4 Tablespoons of butter. Smear on the pheasant hen pieces, cover and keep in the refrigerator.
Pre-heat the oven to 200° C and, switch to the position of half grill, place the rack at the three quarters level.
Put the pheasant hen pieces skin side up on a pan that can go in the oven. Cook on both sides 5-7 minutes, the skin must be crispy and nice and brown. Remove from the oven and keep covered under a piece of aluminum while you finish the sauce. Remove the hot quince pieces from the wine sauce and keep covered with the pheasant hen.
Mix together the remaining 2 Tablespoons butter with the flour, form a soft ball.
With the wine sauce on medium high and using a whisk, add little by little the flour mixture beating vigorously. Once the sauce has thickened season with salt and pepper.
Serve the quince pieces and pheasant hen on each plate and ladle on some sauce.

Miss Lunch’s Corner – October 2011

Cornish Hen, Poussin, or Coquelet with Prosecco and Cabbage

1 coquelet, weighing about 650g
500g shredded cabbage
60g thinly sliced, and cut into lardons, artisanal smoked bacon
2 Bay leaves
1 ½ TB duck fat
2 medium onions, finely chopped
2 ½ C Prosecco
Salt and freshly ground pepper
A little olive oil

Brown the coquelet in the heated duck fat in a heavy iron clad casserole. Take your time to brown it evenly on all sides.
Remove the fat. Keep the coquelet to the side, season with salt and pepper.
Heat a little olive oil and soften the onion. Add the cabbage and soften a little, about 5 minutes.
Place the coquelet on top of this mixture and pour over the Prosecco.
Cover the casserole and let cook 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until the meat when poked with the tines of a fork runs clear.
Serve with rice.

Miss Lunch’s Corner – September 2011

Prosecco Zabaione and Ladyfingers

Serves 6-8

For the ladyfingers :
2 eggs, separated
1/4 Cup castor sugar
1/2 Cup flour
finely grated zest from an organic lemon
a good pinch of grated long pepper
Confectioner’s sugar for dusting
1.Preheat the oven to 400°F/ 205°C. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Butter lightly and dust with flour. Fit a pastry bag with a 1.25cm attachment.
2.Whisk egg yolks and sugar for the ladyfingers until foamy, almost white.
3.Whisk in another bowl the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
4.With a spatula fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the yolk mixture. Sift half the flour into the yolk mixture, then fold in another portion of egg whites until everything has been combined.
5.Pipe three inch pieces onto the baking sheet, dust with confectioners sugar and let rest 5 minutes.
6.Bake for about 4-8 minutes until golden brown. Remove with a spatula and cool on racks.

For the Zabaione :
4 egg yolks
1/2 Cup sugar
1/3 Cup Prosecco
1 TB grenadine sirop
fresh raspberries for decoration
1. Prepare a bain marie. In a bowl whisk egg yolks and sugar until pale in colour. Add the grenadine sirop and Passito.
2. Place the mixture in the bain marie and whisk until four times its volume. Serve over ladyfingers.

To serve : place 2 or 3 ladyfingers on each plate, pour over a little of the zabaione and decorate with raspberries

Miss Lunch’s Corner – August 2011


1 whole rabbit, cut into pieces (include the liver and kidneys and heart!)
1 carrot, peeled and cut into fourths
2 small onions cut in half
2 small zucchini, cut into fourths
1 clove garlic
1 veal hoof, sliced in half
Fresh thyme and rosemary (for the stock)
1 bottle Prosecco
1/3 C salted capers, soaked in hot water for 20 min. drained
The zest of a lemon
Fresh herbs- rosemary, parsley, thyme, tarragon, chives
1 TB grainy mustard
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1. Pre-heat the oven to 210°C
2. Place the cut veal hoof in a pan and cook until nice and brown on both sides, about 1 hour. Place the cut vegetables and garlic in another pan and drizzle some olive oil on top, brown the vegetables along with the hoof, turning them occasionally.
3. Meanwhile, brown the rabbit pieces in some oil on both sides in a large pan. Set aside and season with salt and pepper.
1. In a large pot add the rabbit pieces, the hoof, the grilled vegetables and some thyme and rosemary and add the Prosecco. Bring to a boil and continue boiling for 3 minutes. Add water to fill to the top of the pot, bring to a boil and then reduce the heat. Cover and let simmer for 2 hours.
2. Remove all the meat from the rabbit pieces and place in a bowl. Add fresh herbs finely chopped, the capers, the lemon zest, mustard and the grilled vegetables finely chopped, the mustard and a little of the stock to combine everything well, season to taste.
3. Reduce by one third the veal stock.
4. Pour a little of the reduced stock into a terrine big enough to hold the rabbit mixture. Add the rabbit mixture and pour on at the end more stock to cover slightly. Place in the fridge and allow to set over night. Keeps five days.

Many people are asking me: “What is Prosecco ???”

Prosecco is a term applied to a specific type of wine as well as the grape that is used to make it. The Prosecco grape is primarily grown in a region of Italy known as Veneto. It is also grown in the Valdobbiadene and Conegliano wine regions, both north of Venice. Prosecco grapes ripen later than most other grapes.

Prosecco wine is a crisp sparkling white wine with a slightly bitter aftertaste. In fact, Prosecco grapes are used to make two types of sparkling wine. They can be used to make spumante, a dry sparkling wine,or frizzante wines, which are semi-sparkling.

There are two specific cocktails that call for Prosecco wine. Bellinis are made by mixing peach juice with the sparkling wine. Prosecco, vodka, and cranberry juice are the ingredients of the Poinsettia cocktail. Both of these are lovely and refreshing cocktails; with Bellinis lovely during warm weather months and Poinsettas being delicious and perfect for holiday parties.

In many parts of Europe, the government controls the names of specific wines, sparkling wines, and other beverages. For example, it is only possible to manufacture true Champagne from the grapes that are grown in the Champagne region of France. The same is true for Prosecco. Under European law, the name “Prosecco” can only be applied to wine that is made from Prosecco grapes grown in the Valdobbiadene/Conegliano region of Italy. Prosecco and Dalmatian Prosek are not the same beverage, but very different ones. Dalmatian Prosecco is made from dried grapes, not fresh ones. Furthermore, it is an especially sweet wine akin to sherry.

For more information on this special kind of wine, you can visit the website of the Consortia Tutela del Vino Prosecco, or Prosecco Consortium. If you are interested in sampling Prosecco, find a good wine bar in your area. Some bars and restaurants with long wine lists offer flights of wine, which are three small glasses of different wines that are either in the same family or are meant to compliment each other. The best way to sample Prosecco is, if possible, to order a flight of the wine. Alternatively, visit your local spirits store and ask the proprietor about his or her selection of Prosecco and similar Italian wines.

Miss Lunch’s Corner – July 2011

Prosecco Rabbit Terrine with Capers and Quail Eggs

Prosecco Rabbit Terrine with Capers and Quail Eggs
Makes 24 thick slices

Omit the quail’s eggs and the terrine will keep for a good ten days, with the eggs in, count on 5 days.

1 rabbit, deboned and cut into pieces, bones kept aside
1 calf’s foot, main bone removed and kept aside
1 carrot, peeled, cut into slivers
4 shallots, peeled and cut in half
1 thin sliver (90g) smoked bacon, cut into thin strips
Some neutral tasting oil, like grape seed oil
1 Bay leaf, split in half
1 big sprig fresh thyme
750ml Prosecco
6C homemade chicken stock
1/2C parsley, finely chopped
1 1/2TB grainy mustard
1/3C capers packed in salt, soaked in hot water for 30 min. and drained
A box quail eggs, hard boiled (1 box contains 18 eggs), peeled
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1. Pre-heat the oven to 220° C
2. Roast the calf’s foot and bone until nice and brown all over, about 35 minutes. Add the carrot, shallots and bacon and cook another 15 minutes more.
3. Meanwhile, in a very large cast iron pot, brown the rabbit pieces and bones in some neutral oil. Take care to brown the meat on all sides, but not for too long a time, switching pieces from side to side and taking the cooked pieces out onto a platter. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Add the calf’s foot and browned vegetables, as well as the thyme and bay leaf to the rabbit pieces and bones, poor over the Prosecco and bring to a boil, 30 seconds.
5. Place the pot in the oven at 120°C and cook with the lid on for 1 hour and half.
6. Remove the pot from the oven and remove all the meat by shredding it into bite size pieces with your hands. Do the same with the vegetables. Mix the vegetables and meat with the grainy mustard, parsley and drained capers.
7. Boil down the stock by half and add about 10TB of the stock to the rabbit mixture. Taste for seasoning and correct if necessary.
8. In a long rectangular terrine, lay down with a spoon about 2cm of the terrine mixture in the bottom of the mould. Cut the quail eggs in half long ways and place each one nestled on the inside of the mould, cut side up against the wall of the mould all around the bottom of the terrine. Fill the mould with the remaining terrine mixture and nestle the extra quail eggs on top. Add a little more stock if too dry. Put in the fridge and allow to set overnight.
9. Serve in thin slices with some nice crusty bread.