Tag Archives: walnuts

Goat’s Cheese and Roasted Pepper Tart with Walnut Pastry

26 May

I happened across the idea for a goat’s cheese, walnut and roasted pepper sandwich. Tried it, loved it, wanted it in a tart!

NOT a confident pastry chef, I am always apprehensive when attempting to make pastry from scratch, but the recipe I used for this shortcrust is just amazing. It made pastry easy! And delicious of course. I know you can just buy the stuff but it bothers me so much when I can’t get something right it makes me even more stubborn to keep trying. It’s a recipe from a ‘Basics’ book I borrowed from the library, and is interwoven with the recipe for the filling which is mine.

This serves 4 and makes enough pastry to line a 23cm flan tin.

For the Pastry:

  • 225g plain flour
  • 100g butter
  • 1 large egg, beaten, plus extra for brushing

For the Filling:

  • 150ml log soft, rindless goat’s cheese
  • 70g roasted peppers from a jar, drained
  • 50g walnut halves
  • 2 large eggs
  • 150ml milk
  1. Put the flour and a pinch of salt into a large bowl. Add the butter and rub it in until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs. Stir in the egg and about 1-2 tbsp water to form a soft dough. Knead briefly, then wrap in clingfilm and chill for at least 30 minutes.
  2. For the filling, beat the eggs with the milk. Roughly crumble the walnuts and goat’s cheese and add this to the egg mixture. Roughly chop the peppers and add most of these, along with any seasoning you might like.
  3. Heat the oven to 200ºc. Knead the pastry again and roll it out to the required size. This pastry doesn’t shrink so there is no need to chill it! Brush the base and sides with beaten egg.
  4. Put the flan tin on a baking sheet and bake blind for 5 minutes (do not use baking paper or baking beans as this would stick to the egg wash). Add the filling and bake for 15 minutes more. Now turn the heat down to 180°c and continue cooking for 25-30 minutes, or until lightly set.


Serve with salad! 🙂


Mixed Nut Roast

28 Dec

As requested by Tracey 😉

I have always been curious about this recipe, and finally got round to making it on Christmas Eve. Having made more than enough for 2, I took some round to the veggie mother-in-law for Christmas dinner, so she wouldn’t be stuck with just mashed potato and sprouts. She assured me that she loves it, and I certainly did, so I hope you’ll give it a go too!

I like to make 4 mini loaves, but you can make one big loaf instead.


Serves 4

  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 50g pine nuts
  • 50g walnuts
  • 50g cashew nuts
  • 75g hazelnuts
  • 100g breadcrumbs, white or brown
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped (or 1 tbsp dried)
  • 250ml vegetable stock
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°c. Grease your loaf tin(s). You may want to line them with greaseproof paper, but I found that I got a neater result without.
  2. Heat a frying pan and add all of the nuts. Toast for a few minutes, until they release their scent. Keep an eye on them because once they are toasted, it doesn’t take long before they burn. When they are done, set aside to cool.
  3. Now coat the pan with oil or butter, and add the garlic and onion. Cook, stirring, for about 3 minutes. Take the pan off the heat.
  4. When the nuts are cool, they all need to be ground. It is up to you whether you do this in a food processor for super-fine nuts, or if you put them in a freezer bag and bash them with a rolling pin. I prefer the latter approach – it is more therapeutic. It also leaves uneven chunks of nuts which I like. Stir the ground nuts into the saucepan with the breadcrumbs, egg, thyme, stock and seasoning.
  5. Spoon the mixture into the prepared loaf tin(s) and level the surface. Cook in the centre of the oven for 20-30 minutes (depending on mini or full-sized loaves respectively), until it is golden and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.


Not the prettiest unfortunately, but don’t be put off! I served mine with braised red cabbage made with apples and red wine, which I would recommend,  but I do think that cranberry sauce would also be a perfect match.

Coffee and Pecan Cake

29 Oct

This is a recipe from a book called Breads and Baking. The general editor is Gina Steer… no ‘author’ as such.

I never thought I was a coffee cake person, but I don’t think I’ve ever been so greedy for a cake before this one.

The icing. Is just. My favourite.

It cuts into 8, but then it can cut into lots of other amounts of pieces as well 🙂

  • 175g self-raising flour
  • 125g butter, softened
  • 175g caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp instant coffee powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 50g pecans, roughly chopped, plus extra to decorate (can be left whole)

For the Icing:

  • 1 tsp instant coffee powder
  • 1 tsp cocoa powder
  • 75g unsalted butter, softened
  • 175g icing sugar, sieved
  1. Preheat the oven to 190°c. Line the bases of 2 x 18cm sandwich tins and grease around the edges.
  2. Beat the butter and sugar together until light and creamy. Dissolve the coffee in 2 tablespoons of hot water and allow to cool. Lightly mix the eggs with the coffee  liquid. Gradually beat into the creamed butter and sugar, adding a little of the flour with each addition.
  3. Fold in the pecans, then divide the mixture between the prepared tins and bake for 20-25 mins, or until well risen and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for 5 mins before turning out and cooling on a wire rack.
  4. To make the icing, blend the coffee and cocoa powder together with enough boiling water to make a stiff paste. (The first time I made this, I was far too heavy handed with the water and ended up with a VERY loose icing! It still tasted fantastic, but the cake didn’t look it!) Beat into the butter and icing sugar.
  5. Sandwich the 2 cakes together using half of the icing. Spread the remaining icing on top and decorate with the reserved pecans.