CARAMELISED ONION TARTE TATIN
Prep time: 20 minutes. Cooking: 45 minutes. Makes 12.
2 tbsp olive oil
2 large red onions, halved then finely sliced
1 heaped tsp brown sugar
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1x 375g roll Carême ready-made spelt puff pastry
50g chèvre (soft goats’ cheese)
12 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves picked
1 Heat oil in a large sauté pan over low heat. Add onions and a good pinch of salt; cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes or until very soft. Add sugar and vinegar, season, then cook a further 15 minutes or until onions are caramelised. Set aside.
2 Bring pastry to room temperature (about 15 minutes) and preheat oven to 200°C (180°C fan).
3 lightly spray 12 holes of a mini muffin tray with cooking oil. Spoon onion evenly into muffin holes. Use a cookie cutter to cut rounds of pastry the same size as the muffin holes, then use to cover onions, pressing down lightly.
4 Bake for 15 minutes or until pastry is golden. Remove from oven and stand for 1 minute. Cover with a wooden board, then quickly flip to turn tarts out (if onion falls off pastry, simply spoon back on). Crumble chèvre over, scatter thyme leaves on top and serve.
FRUIT-GLAZED CHRISTMAS HAM
Prep time: 30 minutes. Cooking: 1.5 hours (glaze) + 1.5 hours (ham). Serves up to 40.
9kg whole leg ham
5x 450g cans pineapple slices in juice
2x 700g cans apricot halves in juice
1x 680g can/jar pitted morello cherries
500g white sugar
2 cups (500ml) dry sherry
1 To make glazing syrup, place juice from pineapple, apricots and cherries in a large saucepan. Stir in sugar and sherry and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 1.5 hours or until thick enough to cover the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and refrigerate until needed, up to 2 days.
2 To make ham, preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan). Soak some toothpicks in water for 10 minutes.
3 Use a paring knife to cut the skin at the hock (where the ham meets the bone). Insert your finger between skin and fat to separate, then carefully peel skin from ham. Use a paring knife to score fat in a large diamond pattern. Wrap a 20cm-long sheet of baking paper around the bone and secure with kitchen twine. Place ham in a roasting tray large enough to accommodate whole leg.
4 Arrange pineapple slices over ham (slices should touch), securing pineapple with two toothpicks per slice. Stuff one cherry inside one apricot half; secure with a toothpick. Place one stuffed apricot in centre of each pineapple slice, securing with a toothpick.
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