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Have a great Bank Holiday weekend with sweet and savoury treats

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Moroccan Beef Roulade Pinwheels

Moroccan Beef Roulade Pinwheels

Moroccan Beef Roulade Pinwheels

I always have a pack or two of puff pastry in the freezer - it saves on the time-consuming process of making your own.

There are so many easy savoury and sweet desserts that can be created with puff pastry. So handy if you are having a picnic where nibbles such as cheese straws, sausage rolls or vol-au-vents with a filling of your choice are on the menu. It is also a must if you are making my delicous beef roulade pinwheels below.

I can't believe it's already the August Bank Holiday weekend - the summer is flying by. Thankfully, Dunbrody House has been extremely busy. However, I intend on taking a little time to spend a day or two out with family. There is so much to see, be it on the local beaches or the wooded walks in nearby Tintern and the fantastic Colclough Walled Garden.

For a savoury picnic treat, I like to whip up some pinwheels - they are so easy to make. I'm using a Moroccan flavoured mince filling in this recipe, but other options such as ham and cheese, or feta, spinach and pinenuts, tapenades and pestos are also popular fillings.

When baking the pinwheels, ensure you have lined your baking sheet with parchment paper rather than aluminium foil, otherwise they may stick to the foil and break when you try to remove them from the baking tray.

Also, provide adequate space between each pinwheel to allow them to bake properly. Wrap them in parchment paper before popping into the picnic basket - they can be eaten warm or cold.

Next we will pack some little chocolate amaretti cookies, crisp on the outside, chewy on the inside, and most importantly gluten-free so ideal for anyone following a gluten-free diet. They won't feel deprived with these delicious cookies.

These should keep for a few days in an airtight container, though they never last that long in my house as we all love cookies. The perfect accompaniment to a flask of tea or coffee sitting beside the sea. Crush them over ice cream for extra indulgence.

Happy cooking,

Kevin

 

Moroccan Beef Roulade Pinwheels

Ingredients: Serves 4

500g minced beef

4-5 spring onions, chopped

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½ garlic clove, chopped

1 egg

1 tsp harissa paste

1 tbsp ras el hanout

1 tbsp tomato puree

2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

2 tbsp mixed seeds + extra to serve

1 puff pastry sheet, thawed

1 egg wash (egg yolk + 2 tsp milk)

Salt and pepper

Method:

1. In a bowl, mix the minced beef, spring onions, garlic, egg, harissa paste, ras el hanout, tomato puree, Worcestershire sauce, seeds and seasoning.

2. Place the sheet of puff pastry on a work top and brush with egg wash.

3. Spread the mixture in an even layer and roll from the longest side of the puff pastry into a cylinder. Brush the roulade with egg wash all around.

4. Slice the cylinder into 2cm thick pieces and place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.

5. Sprinkle with extra seeds and place in the oven for 20-25 minutes until cooked through and golden brown.

6. Remove from the oven and serve while still warm.

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Chocolate Amaretti Cookies

Ingredients: Makes 16-18

280g ground almonds

30g cocoa powder

280g (140g + 140g) caster sugar

60g chocolate chips

3 egg whites

30ml amaretto liqueur or almond extract (for a kid-friendly version use almond)

2 heaped tbsp icing sugar

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 170C.

2. Line two baking trays with greaseproof paper.

3. In a large bowl, combine the cocoa powder, ground almonds, half of the caster sugar and chocolate chips. Set aside until needed.

4. Next, prepare the meringiue. In a spotlessly clean bowl, whisk the egg whites until they form soft peaks. Then slowly beat in the remaining caster sugar for two minutes or until glossy.

5. Combine the meringue with the chocolate mixture and slowly stir in the amaretto (or almond extract if you're making a version that's suitable for little ones). Add just enough so that the mixture is a little sticky but still workable with your hands.

6. Place some icing sugar in a bowl. Using a spoon, scoop out walnut size pieces of the chocolate mixture and roll into a ball in the icing sugar. Place on a baking tray then using the back of a dessert spoon, flatten slightly.

7. Place the cookies in the oven to cook for 15 minutes.

8. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool for 5 minutes.

9. Enjoy within a few days with a nice cup of tea or even sandwiched with some vanilla ice-cream - scrumptious!

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TOP TIP: Why having puff pastry to hand is a must for summer

I always have a pack or two of puff pastry in the freezer — it saves on the time-consuming process of making your own.

There are so many easy savoury and sweet desserts that can be created with puff pastry. So handy if you are having a picnic where nibbles such as cheese straws, sausage rolls or vol-au-vents with a filling of your choice are on the menu.

It is also a must if you are making my delicous beef roulade pinwheels.

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