The earlier year has been no stroll in the park, but as the climate will get warmer, picnics are just what we need to have they encourage nostalgia and hark again to more simple, much more harmless situations. Dust off your wicker basket, locate some bucolic surroundings to stare at, declare a patch of sunlit lawn, and indulge in some seasonal, blanket-helpful fare.
Rhubarb and pink peppercorn almond bars
The tickle of pink peppercorns brings a pop of shock to these in any other case conventional rhubarb and frangipane bars.
Prep 1 hr
Relaxation/chill 1 hr
Prepare dinner 1 hr 15 min
Makes 12 bars
175g plain flour, plus further for dusting
50g icing sugar
100g chilly unsalted butter, slice into tiny pieces, plus additional for greasing
Finely grated zest of ½ substantial orange
1 egg yolk
1½ tsp orange juice
For the rhubarb
400g rhubarb, minimize into modest, chunk-sized chunks
100g caster sugar
Zest and juice of ½ orange
For the topping
125g unsalted butter
125g golden caster sugar
1 heaped tsp pink peppercorns, evenly crushed in a mortar
2 eggs, beaten
175g ground almonds
125g raspberry or rhubarb jam
40g flaked almonds
Put the rhubarb in a roasting tin and scatter with the caster sugar, orange zest and juice and toss nicely, producing sure it’s nicely coated. Unfold out the rhubarb in a one layer and depart to steep for 50 percent an hour.
Heat the oven to 180 C (160C enthusiast)/350F gas 4, then roast the rhubarb for 12 minutes, or right until it is just tender, but continue to keeping its form. Established aside to amazing whilst you make the pastry.
Sift the flour, a pinch of salt and the icing sugar into a meals processor, then incorporate the butter and orange zest, and blitz right up until the blend appears to be like like high-quality breadcrumbs. Suggestion into a bowl, insert the orange juice and egg yolk, and blend frivolously until eventually it comes alongside one another into a tough dough. Switch out onto a floured area and knead flippantly until finally easy.
Grease and line a 21cm x 30cm shallow baking tin with baking paper and roll out the pastry to the exact same size. Lay the pastry in excess of the foundation of the tin, prick all more than with a fork and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes. Bake for 15 minutes, then set apart.
For the topping, product the butter, sugar and peppercorns with an electric hand mixer until eventually pale and fluffy. Gradually defeat in the eggs, then fold in the ground almonds.
Unfold the jam evenly above the pastry base, then cautiously spread the almond mixture on best. Drain any extra juice from the rhubarb (preserve it for a beverages mixer) and scatter in excess of the best, gently pressing the chunks into the mixture.
Bake for 10 minutes, then take away and scatter about the flaked almonds. Return to the oven for a further more 35 minutes, until golden and askewer inserted arrives absent thoroughly clean. Leave to cool, then get rid of from the tin and slice into bars.
Heritage tomato, goat’s cheese and sesame polenta cake
As a lot as I really like a Victoria sandwich, there is more to cakes than just jam and cream. This savoury sponge would make for a delightful wedge and is adaptable to other vegetables, way too, from courgettes and fennel with olives to sturdier roots in the winter.
Prep 40 min
Cook dinner 45 min
75g unsalted butter, softened, moreover further for greasing
450g heritage tomatoes (if achievable, use a assortment of versions, from big to cherry)
Sea salt and black pepper
125g plain flour
75g high-quality polenta
2 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp dried oregano
Zest of 1 lemon
2 heaped tbsp tahini
100g difficult goat’s cheese, very finely grated
100ml additional-virgin olive oil, furthermore excess for drizzling
4 large eggs
2 heaped tsp sesame seeds
Toddler basil sprigs, to garnish
200g goat’s curd, to provide (optional)
Warmth the oven to 180C (160C enthusiast)/350F/gasoline 4 and grease and line a 20cm cake tin.
Cut all the tomatoes in fifty percent horizontally, sprinkle with sea salt and go away in a colander to drain absent any extra moisture.
In a bowl, mix all the dry substances and set aside. In a mixer, cream the butter, tahini, goat’s cheese and oil right up until pale and fluffy. Incorporate the eggs 1 at a time and beat until clean. Fold in the dry elements with a metallic spoon right up until well merged.
Spoon 50 % the batter into the tin and lay fifty percent the tomatoes on leading, building guaranteed to get rid of any excess humidity. Now spoon around the remaining batter and crown with the rest of the tomatoes, pressing them down so they are set into the batter. Drizzle over some additional olive oil and sprinkle over the sesame seeds.
Bake for 40-45 minutes, until the tomatoes are caramelised and a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Go away the cake to great right before getting rid of from the tin and decorating with a number of sprigs of basil. Slice and get pleasure from with a spoon of goat’s curd.