An Easter Cook Off

Miso SalmonMiso Salmon with Crisp Vegetable Salad

Serves 4

Miso Salmon

600g Fresh skinless, boneless salmon fillet

1 tsp Miso paste

2 tbsp Vegetable oil

1 Shallot, finely chopped

2,5 cm Piece of ginger, peeled and finely chopped

75g Fresh bread crumbs

2 Spring onions, finely sliced

1 Free range egg white

1 tbsp Soy sauce

1 tsp Sesame oil

½ tsp Mustard seeds

1 tsp Sesame seeds

Glaze

½ tbsp Miso paste

2 tbsp Sugar syrup

1 tsp Soy sauce

Vegetable Salad

2 Baby carrots, peeled

2 Baby green courgette

1 Head baby fennel, herb removed

4 Red radishes

2 Baby beetroot

4 Green or white asparagus spears

1 Shallot

Salt

Freshly ground pepper

Dressing

10g Chopped jalapeno chilli

5g Chopped garlic

5g Salt

100ml Rice wine vinegar

120ml Grape seed oil

In a small bowl, mix together the ingredients for the glaze and set aside.

Place 350g of the salmon in a food processor with a teaspoon of miso paste and blend to a fine paste. Dice the remaining salmon. Chill separately in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.

Heat 1 tbsp of vegetable oil in a small pan, add the shallot and ginger and sweat without colour until softened. Remove from the pan and allow to cool.

Remove the processed and diced salmon from the refrigerator, place in a bowl; add the shallot and ginger, a pinch of salt and mix together.

Add the remaining ingredients except the sesame seeds and bring the mix together, shape into 4 evenly sized rounds and refrigerate until ready to use.

In a food processor, blend the chilli, salt, garlic and rice wine vinegar until the chilli is finely chopped. Add the grape seed oil slowly and continue to blend until fully incorporated. Pass the dressing through a fine sieve and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Set aside until ready to use.

Wash all of the vegetables under cold running water, keeping the beetroot separate. Slice the vegetables on the thinnest setting lengthways on a Japanese mandolin. Place the vegetables into a bowl of iced water and leave them for an hour to tighten up and become crunchy.

Repeat the same process with the beetroot, but place the slices in a separate bowl to prevent the colour from them running into the other vegetables. Rinse the sliced beetroot under cold running water until the water runs clear.

Drain the vegetables and the beetroot and mix them together and lightly season with salt and freshly ground pepper.

Heat the remaining vegetable oil in a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. Cook the salmon on both sides until golden brown, about 3 -4 minutes on each side, brushing them regularly with the glaze as they cook.

Remove from the pan and place one on each of 4 plates. Sprinkle each one with sesame seeds. Arrange a small pile of vegetable salad on top of each salmon and drizzle the dressing over and around the salad.

 Chicken & Mushroom Pie

Chicken & Mushroom Pie

Serves 8

Poached Chicken

1 Whole, free-range chicken

2 Onions, peeled and quartered

2 Carrots peeled and quartered

2 Sticks celery, halved

½ Bulb garlic, peeled and halved crossways

Bay leaf

Salt

Freshly ground pepper

Sauce

30g Unsalted butter

4 Shallots, finely sliced

8 Button mushrooms, finely sliced

1 Clove of garlic, peeled and finely sliced

2 Sprigs of fresh thyme

80ml White wine

200ml Chicken stock

350ml Cream

Salt

Freshly ground pepper

Splash of Madeira

Salt

Freshly ground pepper

Garnish

50g Unsalted butter

2 Leeks, white part only, sliced into 1cm rounds

100ml Chicken stock

200g Mixed mushrooms, trimmed and cleaned

100ml Olive oil

½ Bunch flat leaf parsley, chopped

½ Bunch tarragon, chopped

8 Puff pastry disc, 3mm thick, to overlap the rim of each pie dish by 1 cm

1 Free-range egg yolk, whisked for egg wash

Wash the chicken thoroughly under cold running water to remove any blood. Remove the wings from the chicken and set aside for the sauce. Put the chicken in a heavy based stockpot and cover with chicken stock. Add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, bay leaf, thyme, white peppercorns and salt. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook gently for 45 minutes. Do not boil the stock as the chicken will toughen. Turn the heat off and leave the chicken to rest in the stock for a further 15 minutes. Test a thigh with a skewer – if the juices run pale pink, the chicken is cooked. Allow the chicken to cool before removing and discarding the skin. Remove the chicken meat from the legs and breasts and break into large pieces. Set aside until ready to use.

Make the sauce. Heat the butter in a heavy based pan over a medium heat until just foaming. Add the shallot, garlic, mushrooms and thyme. Sweat for 5 minutes without colouring. Add the reserved chicken wings and continue to cook for a further 3 minutes. Pour on the white wine and continue to cook until is has completely evaporated. Add the chicken stock and cook until it has reduced by half. Add the cream and simmer for 10 minutes. Pass through a fine chinois. Season to taste with salt, freshly ground pepper. Add the Madeira to taste.

Prepare the garnish. Melt the butter in a medium-sized frying-pan over a low heat. Add the leeks, season with salt and freshly ground pepper and cook for 3-4 minutes until lightly coloured. Add the chicken stock and cook the leeks for a further 5 minutes until three quarters cooked, then set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a heavy based frying-pan over a high heat. Add the mushrooms and sauté until golden brown. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper. Drain and set aside until ready to use.

Place the chicken, leeks, mushrooms and chopped herbs into a large bowl and mix together. Bind the chicken mixture with 2/3 of the sauce, then spoon into the pie dishes. Pour a little more sauce into each pie dish.

Brush the top of the inside of each dish with a little egg yolk, and then lay the pastry over the top, sealing it at the top edge and over the side of the dish. Slice any excess pastry off. Place the pies in the fridge for half an hour before baking. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Brush the pastry lids with egg wash and make two slits with the tip of a knife for the steam to escape. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the pastry is golden. Allow to rest a couple of minutes before serving. Serve with a side dish of petit pois al a Française

Churros & Hot Chocolate

Churros & Hot Chocolate

Serves 6

250g Plain flour

Pinch of salt

50g Unsalted butter

200ml Water

50g Caster sugar for dusting

Vegetable oil for deep-frying

150g Dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)

300ml Double cream

1 Vanilla pod, split

Baileys Irish cream to taste or Jameson whiskey

100ml Cream

To make the churros, put the flour and salt in a mixing bowl. Heat the butter and water together in a heavy based saucepan over a medium heat until the butter has melted, then bring to the boil. Add the flour and stir with a wooden spoon until a smooth paste forms. Remove from the heat and transfer to a bowl. Set aside until ready to use.

Chop the chocolate into small pieces and place in a clean stainless steel bowl. Heat the double cream and split vanilla pod in a heavy based saucepan over a medium heat. Bring to the boil and allow the vanilla to infuse for 10 minutes before passing the cream through a fine sieve over the chopped chocolate. Add the alcohol to taste. Stir until the chocolate has completely melted. Whisk the whipping cream to ribbon stage.

To cook the churros, heat the oil to 180°C over a medium heat. Spoon the churros mixture into a piping bag fitted with a 2cm star nozzle. Pipe 10cm lengths of the mixture directly into the hot oil, deep fry until golden brown in colour. Remove the churros from the oil with a slotted spoon, place on kitchen paper to drain any excess oil. Dust the churros with caster sugar and serve warm with a glass of the hot chocolate with a spoonful of whipped cream on top of each glass.

All these recipes and more are available in Liam’s book: Lessons with Liam. R350. This book is based on the 20 Part Cookery courses held at Chefs Warehouse, and is the perfect go to book for basic recipes and as a gift.