Tuesday, 22 October 2013

The Basics - Bechamel Sauce and derivatives

Béchamel Sauce: 

60g Roux – 30g Flour and 30g Butter
Onion Cloute (Half an onion with 3 cloves and a bayleaf)
500ml Milk


Melt the butter adding the flour until it turns pale almost blond in colour, let it cool slightly and add the boiling milk, simmer for 20 mins.

Parsley sauce: 

Add 50g of butter and 100ml of double cream to 900ml of hot béchamel sauce and finish with 3 tablespoons of blanched and pressed chopped parsley. 
Adjust the seasoning and add a little cayenne. 
This dish is good with corned beef or just boiled ham

Mornay Sauce: 

900ml Béchamel Sauce
40g Gruyere Cheese
40g Parmesan Cheese
50g Butter
100ml Double Cream
3 Egg Yolks
Cayenne Pepper


  1. Add the cheeses to the hot béchamel and mix in well. 
  2. Mix the butter in thoroughly away from the heat and add the cream. 
  3. Prepare a sabayon with the egg yolks and add to the sauce. 
  4. Adjust the seasoning and finish with a little cayenne.

Monday, 14 October 2013

What's For Dinner? - Herb-Crusted Rack of Lamb

Coming into the winter months now and there is a chill in the air, why not try something different? Lamb is lovely and a rack of lamb is exquisite! Yes it can be quite expensive, but if you are lucky enough to find a butchers that will sell racks of lamb at a good price and of good quality than this is a recipe for you. Generally it is four pieces to a person. A rack generally has 9 bones on it which is suitable for 2 people as the ninth bone doesn't have that much meat on it. This dish is great with some fondant potato and braised cabbage.

If you don't have a rack you could do raised lam chops and serve the stuffing alongside it so you still get all of the flavours but at a fraction of the cost, or for the classic Sunday roast you could cook a leg of lam and serve with the potato the stuffed tomato and the braised cabbage. 

1 Large Rack Of Lamb
Olive Oil


Sprig Parsley
Splash Of Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons English Mustard
Sprig Rosemary
Sprig Coriander
Sprig Thyme
7 Tbs. Grated Parmesan
4 Slices Of Stale Bread

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 204 degrees/ gas mark 6.
  2. Place lamb on cutting board fat side up.
  3. Lightly score the fat layer with a sharp knife.
  4. Next, generously sprinkle the lamb with salt and pepper.
  5. Mop up the excess seasoning with the rack of lamb, ensuring it’s thoroughly coated.
  6. Heat some olive oil in an oven safe pan.
  7. Seal the lamb by holding each side in the oil long enough to develop color.
  8. Transfer the pan with the lamb into the oven and bake for 7-8 minutes.
  9. Prepare the crust while the lamb is cooking.
  10. Place all of the ingredients for the crust except the mustard into a blender and pulse several times until it looks nice and green.
  11. Make sure you don’t overdo it with the olive oil, just a splash.
  12. Pour the mixture into a deep dish (bowl or plate) and set aside.
  13. Remove the lamb from the oven and brush generously with mustard.
  14. Dip the lamb into the crust mixture coating it completely.
  15. Dip several times to ensure an even coating.
  16. Allow meat to rest for a bit.
  17. Place it back into the oven for 3-4 minutes when you’re ready to serve.
* In the picture the lamb is served with stuffed tomatoes: tomato that has been blanched and refreshed and then peel, stuffed with lightly sauteed onion, mushrooms and peppers season with salt and pepper and mix with some chopped herbs.