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Baked custard with summer berries

My version of custard is thick and sweet. The texture of chilled dessert resembles creme brulee. Baked with a a handful of summer berries, it's a perfect treat for the end of summer. I went for a mixture of raspberries, blueberries and blackberries to break the sweetness of the cream.

Recipe: Baked custard with summer berries

Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 250 ml heavy cream
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 4 tbsp sugar
  • a handful summer berries (raspberries, blueberries, blackberries)
Method
  • Heat cream and sugar in a small saucepan until almost boiling. Set aside and let cool slightly.
  • With an electric mixer, beat the eggs with sugar until thick and pale, but not fluffy.
  • Gradually whisk cream into egg mixture. Again, try not to incorporate too much air into the mixture. It should be smooth and glossy
  • Divide the batter between two shallow baking dishes.
  • Bake at 100C for 20 minutes.
  • Top with berries and bake for another 30 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven, let cool and refrigerate for at least and hour before serving. You can also enjoy the dessert hot or warm.

Duck and waffle

Hot, cripsy waffles, duck leg marinated in maple syrup and fried egg with a perfectly runny yolk - can you imagine a better way to celebrate the upcoming weekend? Being a fanatic lover of all things brunch, I acknowledge many dishes that combine breakfast and lunch, but this particular one is by far my favourite.

The combination of sweet waffles and meat comes with, as you can easily guess, a "made in the USA" label. Chicken and waffles have been paired up by American diners for a while now. I mean American "while", which is closer to 100 and not 1000 years ago. Sadly, the exact origins of this delicious dish remain unknown. It could have been created anytime between the end of the 18th century, when Thomas Jefferson purchased the first waffle iron from France and the 1930s, when chicken and waffles became available in several places around New York's Harlem. There are two traditional versions of the dish - one with fried chicken, served with butter and syrop, the other one with stewed pulled chicken topped with gravy.

My recipe wasn't inspired by the heritage of the Founding Fathers, but by London's Duck and Waffle, with a finger-licking menu by Daniel Doherty. The flagship dish, duck and waffle, is not even the only reason to visit this place. The restaurant is situated on 40th floor, which reportedly guarantees unforgettable views of the London skyline. Reportedly, because upon my visit, all there was to see was a really thick fog. But fog doesn't really matter when you can sample spicy ox cheek doughnuts and crispy duck leg confit with perfectly fried duck egg and a comforting waffle. The place is open 24/7, so next time you have the midnigh munchies, you don't have to rely on what the nearest gas station has to offer.

If London is not on your way at the moment, make this deliciousess at home. There's no better way to start the weekend.

Recipe: Duck and Waffle

Serves: 2

Recipe: Duck legs

Ingredients
  • 2 duck legs
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp. coarse mustard
  • 3 tbsp. freshly squeezed orange juice
  • a pinch of coarse salt
Method
  • Combine all the ingredients of the marinade.
  • Carefully coat duck legs with marinade and refrigerate for at least 3-4 hours (preferably even 24 hours, so if you have more time, let them marinate longer).
  • Remove the meat from the fridge at least half an hour before roasting. Preheat the oven to 170C. Place duck legs in an ovenproof dish and top with remaining marinade.
  • Roast for 2-2,5 hours, until the meat falls from the bone.

Recipe: WAFFLES

Ingredients
  • one cup flour
  • one tsp. baking powder
  • 2 tbsp. vanilla sugar
  • a pinch of salt
  • 2 eggs (yolks and whites separate)
  • 85 ml vegetable oil
  • 225 ml milk
Method
  • Sieve flour into a bowl, add baking powder, sugar and salt. Combine.
  • Add whisked yolks, oil and milk. Combine until smooth using a mixer or a whisker.
  • Beat the egg whites and delicately combine with the batter.
  • Preheat a waffle maker and cook each waffle for 3-4 minutes (or accordingly to the waffle maker manual).
  • Serve waffles with duck legs, fried egg and some maple syrup mixed with coarse mustard.

Duck egg and chorizo in tomato sauce

Duck eggs have been my favourite breakfast item for a while now. Personally, I don't think there's much difference in taste between chicken and duck eggs, although the latter are supposed to be more intense. I like them for two reasons. Firstly, they're larger, whiter and simply prettier. Secondly, a larger egg means a larger yolk. And I really love yolk!

Recipe: Duck egg and chorizo in tomato sauce

Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 2 duck eggs
  • one tbsp. of butter
  • one small onion, sliced
  • 2 tomatoes, peeled and chopped
  • one red bell pepper, sliced
  • 50g of Spanish chorizo, sliced
  • one tsp of sugar
  • a handful of fresh cilantro
Method
  • Melt butter in a skillet, add onions and saute them.
  • Add chorizo and red bell pepper, cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes.
  • Add tomatoes and sugar, simmer until the sauce begins to thicken.
  • In the meantime, fry the eggs in a separate pan.
  • Place eggs on top of the tomato sauce and sprinkle with cilantro leaves.

Broad bean salad

Light summer brunch. Or even lunch, if the day is really hot.

Recipe: Broad bean salad

Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 500 g of broad beans, shelled
  • 300 g of green peas, shelled (you can keep a few pods for decoration)
Method
  • Cook broad beans and green peas.
  • Young broad beans need about 10 minutes (it should be tender, but not overcooked), young peas only about 2 minutes.
  • Remove skins from broad beans.
  • In a large bowl, combine beans and peas with the dressing.
  • Transfer salad to two bowls.
  • Place eggs on the salad. Top with freshly ground pepper.

Recipe: Lemon dressing

Ingredients
  • 2 tbsp. of olive oil
  • 4 tbsp. of freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • one tbsp. of finely chopped parsley
  • salt and pepper, to taste
Method
  • Whisk all the ingredients together.

Recipe: Poached eggs

Ingredients
  • 2 organic eggs
  • a pinch o salt
  • one tsp. of white wine vinegar
Method
    • Bring water to boil, add vinegar. Crack each egg to a shallow bowl. Stir boiling water to create a whirl.
    • Carefully drop the egg into th center of the whirpool. Cover the pot, remove from heat and let it poach for 3 minutes.

    white asparagus and poached egg

    The easiest solutions are often the best.

    Sometimes all you have to do is to poach an egg .

    Watching the runny yolk coat white asparagus puts me in a good mood for the rest of the day.

    Recipe: White asparagus with poached egg

    Serves: 2
    Ingredients
    • one bunch of white asparagus
    • one tsp. of sugar
    • a pinch of salt
    Method
    • Peel the asparagus. Break off the tough ends.
    • Bring water to boil, add salt and sugar, cook the asparagus for 12-15 minutes.

    Recipe: Poached eggs

    Ingredients
    • 2 organic eggs
    • a pinch o salt
    • one tsp. of white wine vinegar
    Method
    • Bring water to boil, add vinegar. Crack each egg to a shallow bowl. Stir boiling water to create a whirl.
    • Carefully drop the egg into th center of the whirpool. Cover the pot, remove from heat and let it poach for 3 minutes.
    • Place asparagus on a plate, top with poached eggs.
    • Season with freshly ground black pepper.
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