#NoelByHJ – Dessert – Twin Hazelnut & Coffee buches

To finish this menu of, we will spoil ourselves with chocolate, coffee and hazelnut all in the shape of two version of the traditional French Christmas cake called bûche. The bûche can be like a Swiss roll or much more imaginative yumminess created in a shape of a log. Caution! These cakes are very very satisfying and RICH enough to make you feel very guilty after each spoon full. Just saying.

Twin Hazelnut & Coffee “bûches”

  • HJ's buche de Noel

    HJ’s buche de Noel

    HJ's buche de Noel

    HJ’s buche de Noel

Ingredients for 2 x 150g cakes:

  • 300ml double cream – 60p
  • 100g hazelnut – 95p
  • 50g Madeira cake – 70p
  • 3 teaspoons instant coffee
  • 20g sugar
  • 2 x (15cm x 7cm) mini loaf baking tins
  • 100g butter
  • 100g icing sugar
  • salt
  • 20ml vegetable oil

Total spend: £3.45

If these cakes were shop bough, they would cost at least £5.00 each… great as a treat.

Method:

Ground hazelnut is not always readily available in supermarkets or if they are, they

Sieving Hazelnut

Sieving Hazelnut

cost quiet a lot of money, It is much much cheaper to buy them with skin, roast, grind and sieve at home as I did. If you don’t fancy doing that, use ground almond instead.  I prefer hazelnut because of its strong flavour. Against the coffee it was fantastic!

Once the ground hazelnut is ready, set aside.

Next remove the “crust” from the Madeira and cut out two mini logs of 3cm x 3cm x 12cm to fit into the baking tin. The idea here is to cut the Madeira so it will fit fully in the inside of the cake. So, it should be smaller than the size of the cake tin. Once the Madeira is ready and set aside.

Break 2 and half chocolate tablets (250g) and melt them in a Bain Marie. Set the liquid chocolate aside to cool down a bit.

While all this is going on, the double cream should remain in the fridge until it is needed.

Dissolve 1,5 teaspoon of coffee in 100ml water, set aside.

Now, prepare the cream. Pour the 300ml of cream in a large bowl with the sugar and whisk until it starts forming picks.

Add to the cream, the melted chocolate and gently fold until the mix become one single and regular colour.

Now divide the mix in two. In one half, mix in the ground hazelnut, leave the other half plain. See blow the mix progression.

Mixing cream and chocolate

Mixing cream and chocolate

Plain chocolate-cream mix

Plain chocolate-cream mix

Hazelnut-chocolate-cream mix

Hazelnut-chocolate-cream mix

 

 

 

 

 

 

On to the moulds. Wet the inside of the cake tins with water and line with cling film allowing about 5cm of film to hang on the outside of the mould. Make sure that the film inside the mould is as flat as possible with no folds or pleats.

Once the moulds are lined up with the film, spoon in the first layer of the plain chocolate and cream mix. 2 tablespoons of the mix per mould should do. Now make sure to spread the mix evenly in both moulds. Spread on the bottom as well as on the sides. This will help with to shape of the dessert.

lined tins

lined tins

first layer

first layer

dipped Madeira cake

dipped Madeira cake

 

 

 

 

 

Once the first layer is spread, dip the Madeira cakes in the coffee and place them on the middle of the cake tins now lined with chocolate mix.

Cover the Madeira cake with the chocolate-cream-hazelnut mix, then tap the tins to allow the mix will fill all wholes. If you still have Madeira cake left, dip it in coffee, place in the tin and recover with the left over chocolate mix until the tin is full.

Now bring in the cling film ends hanging on the outside of the tin and fold them over the dessert tightly, then place the both tins in the fridge for 1 hour.

all layered buche

all layered buche

Ready for a nap in the fridge

Ready for a nap 

Out of the moulds

Out of the moulds

 

 

 

 

 

Meanwhile prepare the presentation plate for both dessert. The bûche can be very fragile and it is not advisable to more it around event two minutes. If you are decorating it, it is best to do so as cleanly as possible while the cake is on a presentation plate.

Prepare the covering for both cakes.

For one, simply melt 50g of chocolate with 20ml vegetable oil or Hazelnut oil if any available. Adding oil to the melted chocolate will prevent it from being too hard to cut with a knife and also give the chocolate a shine.

For the second covering, soften 100g butter at room temperature and when it becomes gel like, whisk it to soften it even further with a pinch of salt then sieve in 100g icing sugar as well as 1 teaspoon of coffee granules. Mix well until obtaining a milky coffee colour. Spoon this mix in a piping bags ready to be piped on the cake.

Once the desserts have been in the fridge for an hour, take them out and carefully unmould them and remove the cling film.

HJ's Buche 1

HJ’s Buche 1

HJ's Buche 1

HJ’s Buche 1

HJ's Buche 1

HJ’s Buche 1

 

 

 

 

 

For the first version of the dessert, simply pour the melts chocolate over it, leave to rest for 5 minutes then, pour another layer of the liquid chocolate over it. Leave to rest for 10 minutes then move into a serving plate before topping with broken roasted hazelnut. Return the bûche in the fridge for at least 1 hour before serving.

HJ's Buche 2

HJ’s Buche 2

HJ's Buche 2

HJ’s Buche 2

HJ's Buche 2

HJ’s Buche 2

 

 

 

 

 

For the other bûche, simply pipe the coffee icing in a pattern of your choice and have fun. As for me, I simply created straight lines to imitate a log. Afterwards, I sprinkled chocolate shaving and topped with whole roasted hazelnuts.

Et voila! It is all done. J

HJ's twin Hazelnut & coffee buches

HJ’s twin Hazelnut & coffee buches

HJ's buche - inside

HJ’s buche – inside

HJ's buche - inside

HJ’s buche – inside

I hope you have enjoyed this menu. To see my whole Christmas menu for 2, type #NoelByHJ in the search box.

I have also create 9 recipes for the Christmas leftovers if you had turkey with the usual trimmings. Just search #XmasScraps or #ChristmasScraps.

Thank you for following.

Happy Christmas to you and yours. See you in 2016… don’t forget to visit Croydon Radio to listen to the show dated 5th December on the podcast with Tom C.

Ciao!

The Barsotto (barley risotto)

 

Barsotto with Crispy mince soya and griddled spring onion

Barsotto with Crispy mince soya and griddled spring onion

For 6 people

Ingredients:

Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 500g barley (55p)
  • 200ml Alpro single cream (£1.00)
  • 6 spring onions (45p)
  • 125g butter (soya butter)
  • 5 small green chillies (10p)
  • White ground pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 100gr white onion
  • Fresh thyme
  • 2 stock cubes

For the topping:

Trimmed spring onions

Trimmed spring onions

  • 50g soya mince (25p)
  • Black pepper & salt
  • Vegetable oil

Cost: 1 bag of mince soy meat costs £1.49/300g and lasts a long time as it is dry. Cost for this dish £2.35 or 40p per person.

Method:

Start by rehydrating the mince and make 1L of stock in the process.

Place the mince in a bowl with the two stock cubes. Pour on it one litre of boiling water and leave to hydrate for 10-15 minutes.

What this will do is allow the mincemeat to absorb a bit of flavour while hydrating and also, the stock will have as after taste of mince.

After rehydrating, sieve to separate the mince from the stock. Make sure to squeeze water out of the soya as it is a bit like a sponge and does absorb a lot of liquid. Set the stock aside and set the mince aside for later use.

Now in a pan with 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil fry the now rehydrated mince with black pepper from the grinder and salt. Fry until the mince become completely dry and brown. It will go through stages. The mince will first absorb the oil in the pan, don’t worry keep stirring. Then it will completely dry out then, start rendering back the oil it absorbed earlier. By the time oil starts to be visible again in the pan, the mince should be browning. The whole process will take about 10 minutes. Do not leave the pan unattended. You must continually stir. Once he mince is brown, remove from the pan and set aside for serving later. Do not cover completely as it may lose its crispiness.

Now onto the Barsotto.

Starting on the Barsotto

Starting on the Barsotto

In a pan, heat about 110g soya butter with chopped onion, garlic, chilli and the thyme at the same time. Vegan butter has more water content than the regular butter so, place the butter onion and thyme together in the pan for 3 minutes until the water from the butter has evaporated and the onion starts browning.

Now add the barley without rinsing it as we need all the starch to make the Barsotto creamier. So, add the barley, white pepper, stir and add the stock. Stir and place the lid on the pot. Leave to cook for 20 minutes. Check the pan every 5 minutes and stir to avoid the barley sticking to the bottom. If you have ran out of stock add water. And each time you add water, stir the content of the pan well to distribute the moisture.

After you have cooked it for 20 minutes, add 200ml cream stir will and cover for 5 minutes. Meanwhile wash the spring onions, cut the green ends and chop roughly. Add the chopped herbs in to the Barsotto, stir, cover and remove the pan from the heat. This is ready.

Now, griddle the spring onions stalks.

As they are already washed and trimmed, rub them generously with butter. Dust with black pepper from the grinder and salt on all sides.

Heat the griddle pan, make it really hot and line the spring onions on it. If it is hot enough, it should be smoking. The smokiness will add to the taste. Allow to cook 2 minutes and half on each side.

Heat the griddle pan. It should be very hot. Once it is very hot, carefully line all the spring onions on it.

If necessary, press them down to make use of the heat.

Griddled and ready

Griddled and ready

Only griddle the spring onions if you are about to serve as they do not taste good reheated.

Serve the dish as suggested topped with the crispy soya mince and enjoy!

Don’t forget to warn you guests about the whole green chillies. 🙂

Until next time!

 

Barsotto with Crispy mince soya & griddled spring onion

Barsotto with Crispy mince soya & griddled spring onion

See the starter and dessert for this vegan menu by clicking on the links.

Toasted Madeira and whipped cream soaked in Jack Daniels syrup

  

Syrup fully absorbed! Consume with moderation

Syrup fully absorbed! Consume with moderation

Dessert for 4

full name: Toasted Madeira & whipped Cream sandwich soaked in a Jack Daniels & fruits syrup

Ingredients:

  • 200g readymade Madeira cake (98p)
  • 12 fresh cherries (about 50p)
  • 1 orange (30p)
  • 1 lime (20p)
  • 150g tinned pineapple (85p)
  • 200ml Double cream (60p)
  • 200g sugar (in the house)
  • 50ml 40% Whisky (or even rum are optional and readily available in the house)

Total spend:

The cost for this dessert is £3.43 or £0.85p per person

Method:

Start by making and cooling the syrup.

Chopped cherries

Chopped cherries

De-stone and chop 6 cherries, Set aside. Cut the orange in 4 then in very thin slices. Cut the lime whole and set aside. Open the pineapple tin and drain. Set aside.

In a small deep pan, combine the citrus fruits, pineapple and chopped cherries. Add the sugar, 500ml water and 50ml Jack Daniels whisky. Cover the pan and simmer for 20 minutes… what we are looking for is for the skins of the citruses to be very soft and edible. Once they are soft enough, the liquid in the pan should have diminished.

After 20 minutes open the pan and leave to simmer uncovered for another 10 minutes. The consistency of the liquid should be almost the same as oil, but light enough to be absorbed by a pastry or even bread.

Slightly bitter alcoholic, but sweet... the syrup

Slightly bitter alcoholic, but sweet… the syrup

Once the right consistency is obtained, transfer the contents of the pan in a bowl to cool down for at least 1 hour, then place in the fridge to make it cold really cold.

Meanwhile, pour the cream in a bowl and whisk continually for about 2 minutes until it forms firm picks, then, spoon into a piping bag the place in the fridge in the piping bag with a star nozzle.

Now, cut the Madeira cake into 8 slices of 9cm long and a width of 4.5cm. Each person will have 2 slices.

Ready for the fridge

Ready for the fridge

Once all the slices are cut place them in the toaster for a minute and a half to harden them. The reason for this is so that the Madeira will have a much more resistant consistency and will not crumble away once the syrup hits it. The toasting also add another taste to the dessert.

Once all the slices have been toasted, place them on a baking rack not only to cool them, but also to stiffen at room temperature.

Now that all the elements of the desserts are ready, set them aside and only mount them just before serving the first course of the dinner.

So, to mount the dessert, lie 4 slices of Madeira flat on a flat surface, pipe on 3 large squirts of the cream on each of the four slice. Now carefully place the second slice of Madeira on each of the slices and pipe another 3 squirts of the cream on the top layer. On the middle cream squirt, carefully place the best of the leftover cherries. And place them on the serving plate and back in the fridge.

Bring the plated dessert out about 5 minutes before dessert time. Carefully and artfully display slices of fruits from the syrup around the dessert then, pour at least 2 tablespoons full of the Jack Daniel Syrup over the cake and leave the cake to absorb the syrup before tucking in and degustating every single mouthful.

full cream, alcohol, homemade.... simples

full cream, alcohol, homemade…. simples

Bon appétit!