The Chefs Larder is the chefs canvas, where we develop our love of haute cuisine into a fulfilling dining experience.
Based in the West Coast of Scotland, we have a passion for all culinary aspects, from foraging, preparation, creating dishes and of course tasting the final flavours.
Our blog welcomes you into our kitchen, where we hope to showcase everything from special dishes, recipes, trade secrets, events, reviews and everything haute!


Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Chocolate tart with raspberry & hazelnut.

This recipe is pretty much the same as the pervious one but I've altered it slightly, I've been playing about with it lately and hoping to get a few alternative dishes put of it for the different seasons. This aims to be the summer one which I'll add a little bit of sorbet to it. 

250g egg white
300g sugar
200g egg yolk
60g cocoa powder
60g ground hazelnuts

600ml milk
600ml cream
100g sugar
200g egg yolk 
700g 70% dark chocolate. 

Whisk the egg whites until peaked, add the sugar whilst still whisking then add the yolks. Fold in the hazelnuts and cocoa. Spread on to grease proof paper and bake in a pre heated oven at 180*c for 15 minutes. It will rise like a souffle and sink again, this is totally normal. 

Heat the milk & cream to a simmer, anglaise with the yolks & sugar to 84*c then pass through a sieve. Cool to 50*c then blend with the chocolate using a hand blender. Pour on top of the base and leave to chill in the fridge. Cut with a warm knife when needed as to retain the fresh look as it dries out quickly if pre cut.

To garnish i've just used a little raspberry sauce, some fresh raspberries and a pinch of roasted hazelnuts. 

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Malted chocolate tart, vanilla ice cream & pear.

Malted chocolate tart, vanilla ice cream & pear. 

250g egg white
300g sugar
200g egg yolk
60g cocoa powder
60g ground almonds

600ml milk
600ml cream
200g malt extract
200g egg yolk 
700g 70% dark chocolate

Vanilla ice cream:
800ml milk
150ml cream
200g yolk
225g caster sugar
2 vanilla pods/seeds

4 pears
2 tbl fructose 

Whisk the egg whites until peaked, add the sugar whilst still whisking then add the yolks. Fold in the almonds and cocoa. Spread on to grease proof paper and bake in a pre heated oven at 180*c for 15 minutes. It will rise like a souffle and sink again, this is totally normal. 

Heat the malt, milk & cream to a simmer, anglaise with the yolks to 84*c then pass through a sieve. Cool to 50*c then blend with the chocolate using a hand blender. Pour on top of the base and leave to chill in the fridge. Cut with a warm knife when needed as to retain the fresh look as it dries out quickly if pre cut. 

Heat the milk, cream & vanilla to a simmer, then angliase the yolks & sugar with the milk to 82*c, pass and churn. 
Peel the pear and sprinkle with the fructose, heat slowly in a pan until soft and pale then puree. 

As you can see I've just put a little pear caramel on the plate, added the tart, a little pear puree and a rocher of vanilla ice cream. You can play about with it as much as possible but I've kept it very simple. 

Monday, 23 February 2015

Watercress & garlic velouté with black pudding & poached egg.

Every spring spotless streams are filled with watercress and the watersides are flourishing with wild garlic, it's all free, no point in paying for them when you can get them fresh everyday down at your local stream or burn. Now I know its a little early but you can just start to see that spring is coming. When I was a child, watercress was one of the first things i discovered as a wild food when playing about in a small burn that came fresh out of the hills up the back of Largs in Ayrshire. This wee burn was so clean that you could drink the water straight from the ground, watercress was everywhere and that's a clear sign of outstanding water supply and with the wild garlic flourishing all over the place, it was amazing. We used to get our eggs from the farm across the road from my nans house as well as slurry for growing the veggies in the garden. 
Just writing this makes me want to be a little kid again, life was great.  Anyway, on to the recipe before we end up spending too much time going down memory lane. 

Watercress & garlic velouté:

1 sliced white onion
50g butter
3 cloves garlic
Pinch salt
2 chopped potatos
1 chopped leek
100g watercress
5g wild garlic leaves
500ml vegitable stock/nage

Firstly sweat the onion & garlic in a little oil and the butter. Add the salt, leek and potato and cook down for 5 minutes. Add the stock, bring to the boil and let it simmer for 15 minutes. Add the watercress & wild garlic and blend. Pass the soup with a sieve and place into a tub, place the tub into a sink with ice & water to cool it down and retain the vibrant green colour. Chill and use when required. For the garnish, i've  poached an organic hens egg. Don't waste your time with everyday eggs, go and find yourself a little farm, veg shop or butchers that sell local produce that you know is grown organically as you'll get a flavour that is ten fold compaired to bog standard eggs.  Also to garnish, i've made a little garlic oil, picked some garlic flowers and cooked & crumbled some world class stornaway black pudding. It was the only option in my eyes when using black pudding, i could make my own but lets face facts because i'm don't have the skills to make a black pudding as good as Stornaway. When heating the soup back up, add a little stock and foam with a stick blender to produce that velvet texture thus producing a Velouté and not your average soup. 

It may be a few weeks before the wild garlic is everywhere but hopefully with this little teaser, you'll be ready to go as soon as its here. 


Friday, 13 February 2015

Chocolate & peanut delice with coconut sorbet

It's clear to see that I'm spending a little bit of time having fun on the pastry section at the moment. I absolutely love being left to my devices and playing about with desserts. It wasn't so a few years ago tho, if someone said pastry I'd run for the hills; or any other section. If I was skilled enough, I'd switch to the pastry forever. He's a little chocolate dish I made this week in work. 

Chocolate delice:

260g peanut butter
120g chocolate
120g feuilletine 

Heat peanut butter & chocolate and mix with the feuilletine and press into a mould and set in the fridge. 

700g dark chocolate (70%)
300g egg yolks
450g cream
250g milk

Heat the milk & cream to a simmer, anglaise the yolks & liquid to 84*c then pass and chill to 50*c and add the chocolate and mix by hand. Pour onto  the base and set in the fridge. 

Chocolate glaçage:
500ml 50/50 stock syrup
500g chocolate

Heat the stock syrup and whisk in the chocolate. Cool slightly and pour over the cremeux. Leave to set and cut when required. Its extremely rich and packs a huge chocolate punch so small amount is more than enough. 

Candy peanuts:
400ml water
400g sugar
200g peanuts

Heat the sugar and water to the boil then add the peanuts. Bring to 110*c then strain and place straight into a deep fat fryer at 180*c a d fry until golden brown. The heat caramelises the sugar and once its ready you cool it and the caramel sets to create a crunchy candy peanut. Spinkle a little salt on top if you wish. 

Coconut sorbet:

200g glucose
800g coconut milk
200g natural yoghurt

Heat the glucose and coconut milk then pass and chill. Whisk in the yoghurt and freeze. Churn in a pacojet when required. 

Garnish the dish whatever way you wish, I've added a bit of chocolate sauce and a touch of toffee sauce. 


Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Caramel tart, pear & hazelnut

This dessert literally makes me dribble when I think of it, I had this flavour combination a fair few times but it really is my favourite. Especially the caramel. 

Caramel tart:

Pastry base:
225g butter
275g icing sugar
2 eggs
Pinch of salt
500g plain flour

200g sugar
1000ml cream
250g egg yolk
4 gelatine leaves

Poached pear:
4 pears
220g caster sugar
1000ml water

50g demerara sugar
50g butter
50g golden syrup
30g plain flour
20g ground hazelnut
20ml lemon juice. 

Caramel sauce:
450g sugar
110g butter
360ml double cream

Creme friche sorbet:
400g creme fraiche
350ml stock syrup
50ml lemon juice 

Roasted hazelnuts
Red vein sorrel

Pastry case: Cream the butter & sugar until pale, add the eggs one at a time and  mix until incorporated. Sift in the salt & flour and mix by hand until together. Leave to rest for an hour then roll out onto a sheet and bake at 160*c for 15 minutes. Once ready, place a square pastry case over the top and apply presure to give you a perfectly shaped base. Do not remove the case. 

Filling: Heat the sugar up until you create a dark caramel then add the cream bit by bit until you have a caramel cream. Mix the eggs together and temper with the warm cream. Anglaise the mix until it reaches 84*c then pass. Bloom gelatine and add to the mix. Leave to cool so its still liquid but not setting then pour into the case and set in the fridge for a few hours or until fully set.  

Poached pear: Bring the water & sugar to the boil then turn the heat down until its stull hot but not boiling. Place the pear into the liquid and cover with a cartouche and poach for 25 minutes. Once just about ready, take off the heat and let it cool naturally. Cut to desired shape when cold. 

Tuille: Slowly heat the butter, sugar & syrup until fully disolved then take off the heat. After a few moments, mix in the flour, hazelnut and lemon juice. Once cold, spread onto a baking sheet at bake at 180*c for 10 minutes until crisp and golden. Cut to desired shape, I used a small circle cutter. 

Caramel sauce: Caramelise the sugar until dark & brown, whisk in the butter bit by bit then add the cream. Bring to the boil then pass and cool. Place into a squeezy bottle and store in the fridge. 

Creme fraiche sorbet: Mix all the ingrediants together and freeze in a pacojet container. Churn when needed. 

Assemble the dish the way you feel best and garnish with a few roasted hazelnuts and some red vien sorrel. 

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Viennese whirls

So this week Jenny at @SewConfident asked me to make a nice little biscuit to go with an eco friendly tea bag as a way to be more greener. After a lot of brain storming I decided to go with a classic tea biscuit and make a box Viennese Whirls, here's the recipe. 

190g soft butter
75g icing sugar
1/2 vanilla pod
Pinch of salt
35g egg white
225g plain flour

Preheat the oven to 160*c. Place the butter into a mixer and beat well with a paddle or use your hands and a wooden spoon. Beat until pale and light. Add in the icing sugar, salt, egg white & vanilla and mix until fully incorporated. Slowly fold in the plain flour. Place a star nozzle into a piping bag and pipe onto grease proof paper any shape you desire. Bake for 20 minutes at 160*c and leave to cool on a wire rack. 

Alternatively, you can dip then in chocolate or dust with icing sugar or ever a little cinnamon sugar. 

Credit to Jenny at Sew Confident for her lovely photo. If you've got a second then check her out. 

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Our new allotment...

Over the past year I've been on a waiting list for an allotment, this week I was offered a few plots at my local plotholders and took this little beauty. 

Now it doesn't look like much but in the world of gardening, it's a rather large space; Eapecially if you live in a city. 

This is a bit of a big jump form using good produce to actually attempting to produce good vegitables, salads and herbs. Over the year we'll keep you updated on whats happening on the allotment as well as hopefully producing a few dishes using our own grown ingrediants. It's been a while since I've grown anything, the last was a few tomatoes back into 2007. Last summer I had a few window boxes but growing some tarragon & mustard cress doesn't really count. So bring on spring & summer and hopefully we can make some great food.