Red fruit and yoghurt surprise

P1010892

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes

The ingredients for the coulis:

  • 0,5 bag of mixed red fruit (from the freezer)
  • 3-4 tbsp. of sugar

The ingredients for the surprise:

  • greek yoghurt
  • strawberries
  • raspberriess
  • blackberries
  • mint leafs
  • pepper

P1010891-2

The work:

You should make the red coulis beforehand so that it can cool down before serving. Put the frozen red fruit in a saucepan and add some sugar and little water. Boil the coulis down to the right consistence. It shouldn’t be thick like preserve. It needs to be somewhat runny to have the nice effect on the yoghurt in the glass.

When the red fruit coulis has been boiled down, remove it from the fire and let it cool down. Put the mass through a conical strainer to remove the seeds from the coulis. An alternative would be to mix the coulis with a mixer or a blender. In some recipes they may actually advise you to do both.

Poor the coulis in a squeeze bottle and put it in your fridge for later use.

When it is time to serve desert, use a nice glass per person. Wash the red fruit and dry it with kitchen paper. Cut up some strawberries and add some to each glass, then add some of the other red fruits and some strawberries again. Continue like this to make the fruit mix until the glass is almost full. Remember to leave some space for the yoghurt at the top.

Put some pepper on the red fruit. Now add a couple of spoons of yoghurt on top of the red fruit. Add coulis on top and finish it all off with a mint leaf.

The secret:

Even after a heavy meal, everyone has room for this one. It’s tasty and light, and surprisingly good. Nobody ever refused or skipped our favorite summer desert.

If you are not keen on making red coulis, you can replace the red coulis with elderberry syrup. I would then put the syrup on the red fruit first and then add the yoghurt on top to make the desert more surprising.

The tip:

If you make more coulis than you need – which is often the case – you can put it in the freezer and save it next time.

I’ve made this desert with plenty of other red fruit like currants, blueberries,… I’ve even used the seeds from a pomegranate. Just use what you have in the fridge. Sometimes I’ve even made alternatives with nectarine, blue prunes and dark cherries. The desert wasn’t as red then, but just as surprising.

Advertisements

Vol-au-vent

P1010884

Preperation time: 60 minutes
Cooking time: 1:30 minutes

We recommend to make this dish in a larger quantity. Cooking vol-au-vent is rather messy and greasy. Once you’ve done the vol-au-vent, you can easily freeze it in portions per person.
The ingredients: (for 18 persons)

  • 2 chickens
  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 3 – 4 chicken legs
  • 1 kg minced meat
  • 2 kg mushrooms
  • 400 g cooked or steamed ham
  • 3 lemons
  • 4 leaks
  • 6 stalks of celery
  • 4 carrots
  • 3 onions
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1l cream
  • 3 cubes chicken stock
  • 250 g butter
  • 250 g flour
  • 4 bay leafs
  • 4 cloves
  • fresh or dried thyme
  • salt & pepper

The work:

Put the cleaned and coarsely cut- vegetables (onion, celery, leak, garlic, carrots), the herbs (thyme, cloves, bay leafs, pepper & salt) and the chicken stock in a big cooking pot and add enough water so that not only the vegetables, but later also all the chicken will be covered with the stock you are now starting to make. Boil the stock until the vegetables are soft.

P1010882P1010878While your stock is cooking, you can roll balls of the minced meat (2-3 cm diameter). Cut the mushrooms in 4 and stew them in olive oil with pepper and salt. When they are starting to change color and going brown, sprinkle the juice of one lemon over the mushrooms to keep their light color. Turn of the heat when the mushrooms are ready.

P1010883Put a couple of spoons from the stock (which is in the making in your large cooking pot) in a smaller cooking casserole to boil the meatballs just for a couple of minutes until they are cooked. This fluid we will not use further because it becomes greasy from minced meat. So use not more than needed.

When the vegetable in the stock are tender, add all the chicken you have and cook for one hour. Check the chicken tenderness; it should be coming of the legs easily.
Now take out all the chicken of the stock and cut the chicken into pieces. If you don’t like bones at all, peal the meat from the bones. We tend to leave in the legs and the skin of the chicken in the stew, but that’s a personal preference. We like the chicken pieces rather large than cut to bite size. The breasts we cut up (or tear-up) a bit smaller.

Choose a new large pot. In this pot you will make the vol-au-vent sauce, so it should be bit enough to take the mushrooms, the meat balls, all the chicken and the ham. Start by making the roux for the sauce. Melt 250 g of butter (make sure it doesn’t burn), add flower gently and stir with a whisk. You will see that the mixture becomes dryer as you add more flower. The roux should smell like a pastry dough, like the French ‘bisquit’ dough. Watch out not to burn the roux. Don’t stop too early with the flower. 250 g of flower will be too much, look at the consistence of the roux while stirring to determine when to stop adding flower.

Use a large spoon to transfer stock from you large pot to the pot with the roux and stir constantly. The sauce will start to tie when the substance cooks. When it starts to thicken, add cream until it is nice and white. Make sure you control the heat, dim the fire if necessary and don’t forget to stir. Add more stock to come to the right thickness of the sauce.

When the sauce is made, add the juice of 1 to 2 lemons. Taste is the key here. The lemon should lift the sauce, but should not dominate the taste. Cut the ham and add the ham, the chicken, the mushrooms and the meatballs to the sauce. Done!

The secret:

Don’t be afraid to spice the stock. Pepper & salt, herbs from the garden, are indispensable to flavor and deepen the taste of the stock.

The tip:

Minced meat is well spiced with salt & pepper in Belgium. If you know the minced meat in your country is not spiced, then make sure to mix it up with enough salt & pepper beforehand.

The rest of the stock you can pass through the kitchen sieve and use as a basis for soup.

Vol-au-vent sauce you can make really thick or runny, depends on how you like it.
Vol-au-vent is often served in a puff pastry, but that’s optional, you either like it or you don’t. You can serve vol-au-vent with cooked potatoes, croquettes,… but for a Belgian it is inevitable to serve with Belgian fries and mayonnaise.