Tag Archives: pancetta

Baked Pappardelle with Pancetta and Porcini

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After receiving a pot of Porcini Mushrooms for Xmas (Santa has good taste), I knew they would come into good use at some point soon. So while sat watching morning TV, full of a cold and feeling thoroughly miserable, ‘The Good Cook’ with Simon Hopkinson came on and after a few minutes he started cooking this dish. It was just the recipe I was after and something that would make me feel a whole lot better after eating it 🙂

Now, after family praise for the Seafood Curry, the reaction to this dish was even better! I got a “now you really must cook this again soon – really yummy” comment. I have to agree and it is definitely my kind of comfort food and so simple to make. What was really nice was the contrast in flavours between the earthy nutty taste of the porcini and the cured sweeter taste of the pancetta along with the pasta, sauce and salty parmesan – perfect combination.

Ingredients:
500ml/18fl oz milk
20g/¾oz dried porcini mushrooms
40g/1½oz butter
25g/1oz plain flour
salt and freshly ground black pepper
100g/4oz pappardelle
50g/2oz pancetta, cut into 2cm/1in pieces
4-5 tbsp freshly grated parmesan

1. Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/Gas 5.

2. Warm the milk in a saucepan, add the porcini mushrooms, remove from the heat and soak for 10 minutes. Strain through a sieve suspended over a bowl, pressing lightly on the mushrooms with the back of ladle to extract all the milk.

3. Heat the butter in a clean saucepan, add the flour and stir over a low heat for 2-3 minutes without colouring the roux.

4. Pour in the porcini-flavoured milk all in one go and whisk together vigorously until smooth. Cook the sauce for a further 10 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened. Season lightly with salt and freshly ground black pepper and set aside.

5. Bring a large pan of salted water to a rolling boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain in a colander, tip into a roomy bowl and carefully stir in the sauce, porcini and pancetta until well combined.

6. Place the pasta into a lightly buttered oven-proof dish. Smooth the surface and cover with two tablespoons of the parmesan. Bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes, or until bubbling around the edges and golden-brown.

7. Serve the dish piping hot at the dinner table and have extra cheese at the ready.

Enjoy!

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Sliced Duck Breast with Winter Stir-fry

I thought it was about time that I chose a new recipe to do from one of my books and having a couple of duck breasts in the fridge, I found the following winter recipe from James Martin’s book “My Kitchen”, which looked perfect to use with them. The only thing I didnt have at home were the sprouts, as I normally dont eat them but I thought as they were to be thinly sliced that I would give them a go!

It is a very easy recipe to follow and the timings are spot on, so well done to James for coming up with such a tasty and fun recipe to cook. This is what he has to say about it…

This dish is full of strong, wintry flavours. For the best results, buy Brussels sprouts still on the stalk and crisp up the duck before baking to enhance the taste and texture.

(Printable Recipe)

Serves 2-4

Ingredients:
3 tbsp Runny Honey
2-4 Duck Breasts
Salt and Black Pepper

For the stir-fry:
2 tbsp Olive oil
5oz/150g Pancetta, diced
4 Shallots, peeled and halved (root left intact)
3oz/75g Butter
11oz/300g Brussels Sprouts, outer leaves removed and thinly sliced
8 Brown Cap Mushrooms, sliced
11fl oz/300ml Chicken Stock
2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley

Preheat oven to 180C/350F Gas 4 or 170C Fan Oven.

1 On the hob, heat a frying pan large enough to fry the duck breasts side by side, add the honey and allow to bubble gently.

2 Season both sides of each duck breast with salt and pepper, place into the frying pan, skin side down and cook gently over a medium heat until the duck is crisp and the the honey has turned brown.

3 Transfer the duck breasts into a baking dish, skin side up. Bake in the oven for 8-10 mins (longer for well done), then remove from the oven and set aside to rest for a few minutes before slicing.

4 Meanwhile, add half the olive oil to a non-stick frying pan set over a high heat and fry the pancetta until golden brown. Remove from the pan, dry on kitchen paper and set aside.

5 Drain off the fat from the pan, then set the pan back over the heat, add the rest of the oil and add the shallots to brown them.

6 After they have been cooking for 2-3 minutes, melt half the butter in the pan and tip in the Brusssls sprouts and mushrooms. Sauté for 4-5 minutes to brown a little, adding more butter if necessary, then add the cooked pancetta.

7 Pour in the stock and simmer to reduce for 2 minutes and stir in the rest of the butter. Add the parsley and season with salt and pepper. Place on plates and arrange the sliced duck on top.

Enjoy!