THERE’S ALWAYS THAT ONE DISH WHICH IS LIKE A PORTAL TO RICH, SENSORY EXPERIENCES; OF PEOPLE, PLACES, FLAVOURS AND EVEN EVOCATIVE AROMAS – SO REAL YOU COULD ALMOST REACH OUT AND TOUCH THEM! THE RECENT ENFORCED GLOBAL HIATUS HAD
THOUGHTS TURNING TO SUCH MEMORIES. TERESA ULYATE TAKES US ON AN FOODIE ADVENTURE.
Memories. Barbra Streisand sang about them “lighting the corners of her mind”. I’ve spent a lot of time recently thinking about the past. Places I’ve travelled, old friends, memorable meals.
When I lived in London many years ago, one of the highlights was being able to take regular short trips to Europe. What an experience! It’s been about 10 years since I travelled overseas and last year, when some travel opportunities presented themselves, I decided 2020 was going to be my year to spoil myself with a bit more international exploring …
Those plans have obviously and disappointingly been put firmly on ice, and while most travel may be somewhat restricted for a while it’s possible to go on a virtual culinary trip. Doing the vicarious travel thing via the internet allows you to scour out the best places and experiences you’d like to have once the skies open up and the opportunity presents itself. I’d head to Portugal which is currently one of the hottest travel destinations going, so here are two Portuguese inspired recipes that I’m sure you’ll love!
I hope that you’ll want to add trinchado to your winter menu. Trinchado is essentially a Portuguese beef stew served with fresh rolls to soak up all that lovely sauce. It’s a rich and hearty one pot meal that will definitely keep the meat lovers satisfied. Talk about classic Portuguese made easy!
Dessert is inspired by the ever popular pasteis de nata, and I’ve added a little twist, of course. Crispy puff pastry cups are filled with a creamy chocolate orange custard, they’re an absolutely luscious treat. Try them.
BEEF TRINCHADO WITH ROLLS (Serves 2)
For the rolls:
- 200ml warm water
- 125ml warm milk
- 7g instant yeast
- 500g cake flour
- Pinch of salt
- 15ml olive oil
- 15ml milk, for brushing
- 15ml flour, for sprinkling
For the Trinchado:
- 15ml butter
- 600g beef cubes
- 10ml olive oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 15ml flour
- 10ml crushed garlic
- 2.5ml chilli flakes
- 5ml paprika
- 5ml dried oregano
- 30ml Worcestershire sauce
- 125ml red wine
- 125ml beef stock
- 45ml yoghurt
- Salt and pepper
- To make the rolls, place the water and milk in a small jug. Add the yeast and stir. Leave to stand for a few minutes.
- Combine the flour and salt in a mixing bowl. Add the olive oil followed by three quarters of the liquid. Mix together, adding more liquid as needed until you have a soft dough. Knead the dough for 10 minutes until soft and stretchy. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and leave in a warm place for an hour to double in size.
- Divide the dough into eight equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ball and pinch two sides to create a roll shape. Arrange the rolls on a lined tray and set aside for 30 minutes to rise.
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Brush the rolls with some milk and sprinkle with flour. Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden and cooked through. (Keep the extra rolls for lunch or pop them in the freezer.)
- To make the trinchado, melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the beef and cook over a medium heat to brown. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Heat the olive oil in the same saucepan. Add the onion and cook gently for 5 minutes to soften. Stir in the flour and cook for a minute. Add the garlic, chilies, paprika and oregano. Stir and cook for another minute.
- Return the beef to the pan. Add the Worcestershire sauce, wine, beef stock and yoghurt. Stir well, then simmer gently for 15 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Season with salt and pepper.
- Dish onto plates and serve with fresh rolls.
CHOCOLATE ORANGE CUSTARD TARTS (Makes 10)
- Flour, for dusting
- 400g puff pastry
- 2 large eggs
- 45ml demerara sugar
- 90ml cream
- 90ml milk
- 5ml vanilla extract
- 10ml finely grated orange zest
- 100g dark chocolate, melted
- Grated chocolate, to decorate
- Preheat the oven to 200ºC and grease a muffin pan.
- Firstly, dust your work surface with a little flour. Roll out the puff pastry and cut out 11cm diameter circles. Gather the scraps, roll them out again and continue until you have used up all the pastry. Press the pastry circles into the greased muffin tray.
- Bake the pastry for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and carefully press the puffed up pastry back into the muffin cups to hollow them out again. Set aside.
- Reduce the oven temperature to 180ºC.
- To make the custard, place the eggs and sugar in a small bowl. Whisk together until creamy and the mixture has thickened slightly. Set aside.
- Place the cream and milk in a small saucepan and heat until it just starts to boil. Slowly pour half of the hot milk mixture into the egg while whisking. Once combined, pour this mixture back into the saucepan. Stir the custard continuously over a low heat for 5-7 minutes until it has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon. (Do not let the custard boil!) Remove the custard from the heat and add the vanilla extract, orange zest and melted chocolate.
- Whisk well until combined.
- Pour the chocolate custard into the pastry cups. Bake the tarts for 10-15 minutes until the filling has set on top but still has a slight wobble. Carefully remove them from the muffin tray and leave to cool completely.
- Decorate by sprinkling with grated chocolate just before serving.