SAVOURING THE SEASONS WITH KAREN PHILLIPS

Bird song starts earlier in spring, but can be drowned out by the shenanigans within the flock of geese at the farm. The benefit of these, often raucous, exchanges is a steady supply of chicken, duck and geese eggs with their bright yellow yolks in time for Easter.
SAVOURING THE SEASONS WITH KAREN PHILLIPS

SPINACH PIZZETTA TOPPED WITH SOFT EGG >>

I often make a double batch of sourdough starter to use in breads and any leftover dough sits happily covered in the fridge for a week or so, making these mini pizzas from the fabulous Italian cookbook, ‘Polpo’, quick and easy to prepare. The perfect lunch when served with a glass of Tyneside Blonde!

SAVOURING THE SEASONS WITH KAREN PHILLIPS

INGREDIENTS:
4 golf ball-sized pieces of sourdough/or any pizza dough
200g of baby spinach
1tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
3 tbsp crème fraiche
Grated parmesan, sea salt and black pepper to taste.
Semolina to dust the work surface so the dough pizzetta do not stick

METHOD:

Preheat your oven to its highest setting (240-250 °C) and place two heavy baking trays/baking stones in to heat up. Prepare the spinach topping by heating the oil in a small saucepan and adding the garlic for 30 seconds, then add the spinach and stir until wilted and no liquid remains. Remove from the heat and stir in the crème fraiche and add parmesan seasoning to taste.

Stretch each dough ball into a 15cm round, shaping the sides a little higher than the middle so the egg can’t escape. Spread 1/4
of the spinach paste over the dough – repeat with the other three dough balls. When you are ready to cook them transfer the individual pizzetta on to the hot baking sheets (dough scrapers work well or use a large flat spatula) and quickly crack an egg in the centre of each pizzetta.

Bake for eight minutes, or until the egg is just set, and serve alongside a cold beer.

HAZELNUT PAVLOVA WITH PASSIONFRUIT CURD >>

Homemade passionfruit curd is a labour of love, but passionfruit occupy a warm spot in my heart. In my youth, (many moons ago), I travelled around South America with my sister, and one abiding memory was arriving in Cartagena, Colombia and hearing street stallholders shout ‘Maracuya con leche, maracuya con leche!’ – I had no idea until years later what those golfball-sized, wrinkly purple fruits that they used were named in English. I simply remembered the most heavenly cold milkshakes, made with tins of Milo milk (the equivalent of evaporated milk here) so, a combination super, super sweet and acidic. If you can’t get hold of passionfruit curd then fear not, lemon curd will taste just as good.

SAVOURING THE SEASONS WITH KAREN PHILLIPS

INGREDIENTS: (makes six individual pavlovas)
40g chopped, roasted hazelnuts
3 large egg whites
Pinch of salt
175g caster sugar
1tsp cornflour
1/2 tsp white wine vinegar
150g double cream, lightly whipped
3 passionfruit – pulp scooped out
1/2 jar of passionfruit/lemon curd

METHOD:

Preheat the oven to 140 deg C. Cover a large baking sheet with parchment.

Whisk the eggs whites, with a pinch of salt, into stiff peaks. Gradually whisk in the sugar, one tablespoon at a time, until a shiny meringue appears. Finally, whisk in the cornflour and vinegar and then fold in the hazelnuts.

Place six large spoonfuls of the mixture on the baking sheet and shape them into 10cm rounds, making a slight dip in the centre and a higher rim around the edges.

Bake for 40-45 minutes until a pale coffee colour. Turn off the oven and leave the meringues to cool inside.

To serve, spoon whipped cream on to each meringue, top with the passion fruit curd/lemon curd and then drizzle with passionfruit pulp. Serve immediately.

 

UPCOMING COURSES AT LINNELS FARM

Natural Perfumery with Michele
FRIDAY 15 MARCH
Under the careful guidance of an International Perfumer, you will learn about the magic of working with natural extracts and how to create
your own signature fragrance using natural perfumery ingredients.

Glorious Gluten-free!
THURSDAY 21 MARCH
Trying to avoid gluten and looking for some inspiration? On this hands-on course, we’ll master the gluten-free loaf, discover cakes and biscuits inspired by countries that don’t have
a history of wheat growing and revel in a day of naturally gluten-free food. You’ll join chef Andy Snell and Karen in the morning to prepare a gluten-free feast for a convivial lunch, then it’s back to your workstation in the afternoon for some gluten-free bakes to take away at the end of the day.

Egg-cellent!
WEDNESDAY 27 MARCH
The humble egg is the true chameleon of the kitchen – transforming desserts, fluffing up soufflés or simply providing the speediest suppers in minutes. Join us on this workshop and you’ll meet the feathered flock at Linnels Farm, have the chance to cook with a whole variety of eggs, and depart with recipes for egg-cellent meals!

Bread Part 3 – Middle Eastern Breads
THURSDAY 28 MARCH
Tantalise your taste buds with a celebration of Middle Eastern Breads, such as fatayar, Afghan Boulangee, lavash and naan. Fear not, you don’t have to have completed Bread Part 1 or 2 to join us for this bread-making day.

Versatile Vegan
TUESDAY 9 APRIL
Whether you are cooking vegan for environmental, ethical or health reasons, or simply catering for vegan friends and family, this non-preachy evening class is for you. You’ll learn to create delicious vegan dishes and you’ll prepare a little something to take home and show off your new skills. Time: 6.30pm – 9.30pm.

Late Spring Tulip Festival
SATURDAY 27 & SUNDAY 28 APRIL
Relish the riot of spring colour at Linnels Farm. Bring wellies/walking boots and wander down across the meadows to ‘Devil’s Water’ and back, spotting wildlife and wildflowers along the way. Time: 1-4pm. Talk on spring bulbs @2 and 3pm. Tickets :£5 per person; all profits will go to St Oswald’s Hospice. Coffee and cakes for sale.


For further details visit: linnelsfarm.com

Seaham Hall

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