Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Ballymaloe Day 14, January 26th - I made an Amazing Meringue

Well, I am telling it like I think it is with this title. Back in the demo kitchen I was making the smoked salmon rillette and the kumquat meringue. They are mad on kumquats here! I was also ploughing on with stage 3 of the Candied Peel Odyssey. I blanched and skinned some almonds, chopped em up finely and folded them into the meringue I made in the Kenwood. I used my palette knife to paddle them out into 2 circles I'd drawn on parchment paper, then they went into the oven. They looked the best meringues I'd ever made! I sandwiched them together with whipped cream and some sliced kumquats cooked in syrup. Then I decorated the top with piped whipped cream (the piping bag made it's debut in the kitchen), tiny mint leaves and more kumquats. Apparently the kumquats were a bit over cooked and almost crystallised, but I didn't care! I can't believe I made something that looks this good, here it is!:

OMG (Oh, Meringue Genius, hmmm maybe not)
 Next was the starter, a very rich smoked salmon rillette, served with cucumber pickle and sourdough soldiers. I love the cucumber pickle here, more sour than sweet which I prefer and it is very easy to make. The rillette was delicious, but I was too generous with the portion size I served, no surprise there. I garnished it with fennel, like little trees, very pretty!

Chose this French-looking plate for the Salmon Rillette
Lastly my candied peel reached its weary end. To be honest I had let it cook for far too long, there was not enough syrup either to cover it in the jars. It looked okay but once it cooled it just ended up a load of crystallised peel in crystally sugar. Tasty enough but not really the right consistency. Better luck next time!

In the afternoon Rachel went through cooking and serving Langoustines (or Dublin Bay Prawns as they call them here) and Shrimps. She also made mayonnaise to serve with them, a treat, and there was another demonstration on making a sourdough loaf – another recipe with a time span in days rather than hours! I need to get on with mine! Rachel also cooked Bacon Chops from the loin and cooked Pork Belly with a sweet glaze. The food here is delicious but so rich sometimes. For dessert was Apple Pie with a pastry made in the Kenwood. I am making that and the Langoustines and mayonnaise, looking forward to it.

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