Whenever I am reading newspapers, magazines, new cook books or nowadays web recipes I copy and try many of them. Yes, in days gone by I was the one who would annoyingly, rip out the pages of magazines in dentist and doctors waiting rooms. Nowadays of course with smart phones, I just take a photograph of them. No wonder my phone is constantly telling me ” Storage almost Full”!
I even have an I-pad, dedicated to all things food and travel. On this I-pad, I either store recipes in a recipe folder or I store them ( and the travel) as PDF’s in books, and so I can flip through them just like flipping pages of a book.
I nearly always condense the recipes, and in a real book I annotate, but have not found a way to do this using the PDF method ( I must consult my all things computers gurus). Oftentimes, I find the recipes too long-winded, so much so, that anyone new to cooking would be severely “Put Off” at first glance. I first condensed and simplified recipes many years ago, firstly as my young son was having difficulty reading, but loved cooking, so I created an easy to read cook book, just for him. At the time also I had my own, informal cooking school, in Brussels and my pupils were mainly Expat women of many different nationalities. It became necessary to come up with methods that were easy to understand for all.
So to this day, I still annotate and condense.
Today I tried 3 new recipes, one by Tom Kerridge, of Hand Flowers fame one by Theo Randall and one by ME ! They all worked but I have reservations about the first, but inspite of my reservations, HIMSELF seems to like it a lot !
Tom Kerridge has a recipe for Caramelised honey and roasted vanilla crème brûlée which I came across in The Times.
- 2 Vanilla pods ( I used liquid vanilla, which takes out the step of roasting the vanilla pods)
- 60g of heather honey ( I used acacia honey from Waitrose as it also contained the honeycomb)
- 7 eggs
And to serve the Honeycomb cut into 8 pieces and he used Demerara Sugar, I used fine castor sugar.
Now this is the bit of the recipe, that I have a problem with, so listen very carefully ( well I mean read and understand).
It says measure the honey and heat to 140 C using a digital probe or thermometer. I possess three such items, two cooking thermometers and a digital probe ( a Thermopen, which decided not to work) I think most home kitchens do not have a thermometer, let alone a digital probe. As my digital probe was defunct I used the thermometer, but actually 60 g of honey in the bottom of a pan is not very much honey and although it was a smallish pan, I had to tilt it, to be able to measure the temperature, and then my stove top would flash at me ( it is induction), however I got there in the end. If you do not have either a probe of cooking thermometer, I would suggest heating the honey gently until it begins to change colour and caramelise, keeping a careful eye on it so as not to burn.
Remove from the heat, add the cream, whisking well.
Whisk the eggs, until they are pale yellow, pour over the cream, again whisking whilst doing so. Return to the heat and heat up to 86C stirring constantly, the mixture will bubble up almost to the top of the pan but will subside as you whisk.
Pour the mixture into a blender and process for a minute and pour into ramekins.
Refrigerate , until they are cool and ready to use. Sprinkle sugar on top, and either place under a hot grill to caramelise or use a blow torch. Serve with a bit of Honey comb on top of each.
After all that, I forgot to serve with the Honeycomb !!