Food fit for sharing

Authors of Cook: Food to Share (from left) Jenna White, Dean Brettschneider and Helen Burge....
Authors of Cook: Food to Share (from left) Jenna White, Dean Brettschneider and Helen Burge. PHOTOS: SUPPLIED
In wanting to keep the art of cooking and baking alive Dean Brettschneider has made sure his latest book is all about sharing - perfect for Christmas get-togethers.

Cook: Food to Share, Dean Brettschneider with Jenna White and Helen Burge, Bateman Publishing,...
Cook: Food to Share, Dean Brettschneider with Jenna White and Helen Burge, Bateman Publishing, RRP $39.99.

It has been inspired by growing up in the 1980s in New Zealand, when his family would sit around a table for the evening meal and go to his grandmother’s on Sundays for a roast.

To him these dinners were the epitome of comfort and sharing food so he wanted in today’s busy world to encourage a return to these behaviours.

“I knew if people understood quality ingredients and proper baking and cooking techniques, they would also appreciate what it means to share a home-cooked meal with family and friends. This has proved true.”

Brettschneider, baker and television presenter, has joined forces with his staff from his cooking school and restaurant to produce his latest book COOK: Food to Share.

The book includes dishes taught at the school and served at his restaurant that have become firm favourites. It is broken up into chapters on snacks and light bites, brunches, salads, grains and pulses, seafood, meat and desserts.

 

Sumac and maple-glazed leg of lamb

Sheep are ubiquitous to New Zealand and it has been estimated that there are 10 sheep to every Kiwi! 

It’s no wonder then that Dean and Jenna know lamb roasts like the back of their hands. In this recipe, their use of sumac as a seasoning really brings out the flavour of the lamb.


SERVES 6

2kg leg of lamb, bone-in
sea salt, as needed
ground black pepper, as needed
2 Tbsp sumac
4 tsp olive oil

Maple glaze
500ml beef stock
125ml maple syrup
80g brown sugar
2 Tbsp grain mustard

Garnishing
75g pistachio nuts
1 pomegranate, peeled and seeds separated
a handful of micro mint
a handful of edible flowers

METHOD

Prepare the maple glaze. Place the beef stock, maple syrup, sugar and mustard in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Let it boil for 8-10 minutes, until thick and sticky. Set aside.

Score the skin of the lamb, then season well with salt, pepper and sumac.

Place a large frying pan over high heat and heat until it is smoking. Add the olive oil, followed by the lamb, skin-side down. Let it cook until the skin is caramelised and golden in colour.

Preheat the oven to 240degC.

Remove the lamb and place skin-side up in an oven dish. Brush with the maple glaze and roast for 30 minutes. Brush with the maple glaze every 10 minutes until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the leg reads 54degC for medium rare.

Remove and place on a wire rack. Cover with aluminium foil and let rest for 10 minutes.

Arrange on a serving plate and garnish with pistachio nuts, pomegranate seeds, micro mint and edible flowers.

 

Crispy sage potato stacks

For Helen, Christmas in Australia would not be complete without these crispy sage potato stacks. A regular feature on her family’s dining table, these potato stacks have now become a hit with students attending our Christmas Entertaining classes. We challenge you to eat just one!

MAKES 10

30g  butter, melted
10 fresh whole sage leaves + 1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh sage leaves
750g  Desiree potatoes
125ml  double cream
4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
salt, to taste
ground black pepper, to taste

METHOD

Heat the oven to 200degC.

Line the base of 10 muffin cups with a circle of baking paper and brush with melted butter. Place a whole sage leaf face-down in each muffin cup. Set aside.

Wash and peel the potatoes. Slice thinly using a mandolin. Place in a large bowl and set aside.

Combine the cream, garlic and chopped sage in a bowl. Season generously with salt and pepper and mix well.

Pour the cream mixture over the sliced potatoes and ensure the potatoes are well coated.

Fill the muffin cups with the dressed potatoes.

Bake for 40 minutes, or until crisp and golden on the top and edges, and a skewer can be easily inserted into the middle of each stack.

Remove the potato stacks from the muffin cups and overturn them on a serving plate, so the whole sage leaf sits on top. Peel off the baking paper.

 

Pomegranate and freekeh tabbouleh with spelt and coriander flatbread

Tabbouleh is a fresh-tasting Levantine herb salad often served in Lebanese restaurants. 

This is our recipe, elevated with pomegranate seeds and molasses. 

It goes superbly well with quick-and-easy, no-fail flatbreads and rich, roasted meats like the sumac and maple-glazed leg of lamb.

SERVES 6

125g  whole freekeh
30g Italian parsley, roughly chopped
15g  mint leaves, roughly chopped
4 spring onions, finely sliced
1 medium cucumber, cut into small dice
1/2 pomegranate, peeled and seeds separated
11/2 lemons, juice extracted
3 tsp pomegranate molasses
2 tsp maple syrup
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt, to taste
ground black pepper, to taste

Flatbread

170g Greek yoghurt
140g wholemeal spelt flour + more for dusting
1/2 tsp ground coriander 1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sea salt flakes
5g coriander leaves
Vegetable oil, as needed

METHOD

Cook the freekeh according to the instructions on the packaging. Set aside to cool.

Place the cooled freekeh in a bowl with the parsley, mint, spring onions, cucumber and pomegranate seeds. Mix gently.

Place the lemon juice, pomegranate molasses, maple syrup and olive oil in a small bowl. Mix well, then pour over the freekeh mixture and combine gently. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Prepare the flatbread. Place the yoghurt, flour, ground coriander, baking powder and salt in a mixing bowl and mix to combine.

Add the coriander leaves and gently mix through.

Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured work surface and divide into six portions, each about 55g.

Roll each portion into a 3mm-thick round, lightly dusting with extra flour to stop it from sticking.

Heat a non-stick frying pan or grill pan over medium heat. Brush with oil and cook flatbread individually for 2-3 minutes on each side, until golden brown and cooked through.

Sprinkle with more sea salt flakes and serve warm with the tabbouleh.

 

 

 

Sumac and maple-glazed leg of lamb

Sheep are ubiquitous to New Zealand and it has been estimated that there are 10 sheep to every Kiwi! 

It’s no wonder then that Dean and Jenna know lamb roasts like the back of their hands. In this recipe, their use of sumac as a seasoning really brings out the flavour of the lamb.


SERVES 6

2kg leg of lamb, bone-in
sea salt, as needed
ground black pepper, as needed
2 Tbsp sumac
4 tsp olive oil

Maple glaze
500ml beef stock
125ml maple syrup
80g brown sugar
2 Tbsp grain mustard

Garnishing
75g pistachio nuts
1 pomegranate, peeled and seeds separated
a handful of micro mint
a handful of edible flowers

METHOD

Prepare the maple glaze. Place the beef stock, maple syrup, sugar and mustard in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Let it boil for 8-10 minutes, until thick and sticky. Set aside.

Score the skin of the lamb, then season well with salt, pepper and sumac.

Place a large frying pan over high heat and heat until it is smoking. Add the olive oil, followed by the lamb, skin-side down. Let it cook until the skin is caramelised and golden in colour.

Preheat the oven to 240degC.

Remove the lamb and place skin-side up in an oven dish. Brush with the maple glaze and roast for 30 minutes. Brush with the maple glaze every 10 minutes until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the leg reads 54degC for medium rare.

Remove and place on a wire rack. Cover with aluminium foil and let rest for 10 minutes.

Arrange on a serving plate and garnish with pistachio nuts, pomegranate seeds, micro mint and edible flowers.

 

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