Monday, January 21, 2008

Hold On For The Ride...It's Jamie Oliver

Gosh, he's fantastic, but, boy, would it be easier if all of his recipes were online.

Jamie At Home with Jamie Oliver

Old-Fashioned Sweet Shortcrust Pastry
Blackberry and Apple Pie

Steak and Guinness Pie
Italian Ham, Nettle & Spinach Tart

One good thing about making sure I was in front of the television at 9:30 am promptly was watching the last 4 minutes of Tyler. He sure has a lot of manliness riding on those broad shoulders. Oh, sorry, I mean his lasagna looked amazing (it really did) and that semi-freddo! Just the thing to have before curling up with the chef...I digress.

Jamie...Ok, seeing the show from the beginning this time didn't really inform me about what the heck he's doing in that shed...but, really, I don’t care. I love him. Jamie is a real, true cook using real, true ingredients, many of which we’re given to believe he has grown or raised in his own backyard. I don’t doubt it for a second.

Homespun opening. Hand-written, food stained notebook or journal pages...He's showing us two pastry crusts one sweet and one savoury (I will be adopting British Spelling and the Queen’s weights and measurements for the rest of this post). He’s making one by hand, the other in a Magimix. (Ok, I won’t go that esoteric. Magimix is the company that invented the food processor, way back in the last quarter of the 20th century and, although it’s French, many Brits still refer to a food processor as a Magimix.)

Working a pretty breakneck speed, Jamie tells us that the rule of pastry is using half fat to flour. That’s not that useful for us Yankees, because he talking about weight - 500 grams of flour to 250 grams of fat. In the recipe on the website (ONLY the sweet pastry and apple pie are there…that is sooooooooo irritating) he says 3½ cups flour to 1 cup of butter. (Oops, I said only Imperial measurements.)

He makes both pastries at once and it IS a bit hard to follow. He’s sifting flour for sweet pastry and pours into a food processor. He sifts flour again for the savory crust, which goes into a bowl (a rustic earthenware one). Butter goes into the sweet one, lard and cheese into the savoury one. Icing sugar (that’s unusual) into the sweet one.

Then he says to use any flavourings you wish. Lemon zest can be added to the sweet pastry, herbs to a savoury one. He adds 2 beaten eggs and a bit of milk to each and stirs it until “claggy and (it) gets thicker”.

Jamie mixes the savoury one by patting and pushing it until it comes together into a nice cake. He whirls the sweet one in the food processor until it is just mixed and pushes it into a flat ball (is that a oxymoron?). He refrigerates it (in an ICE BOX, I wonder?) for 30 minutes.

For the apple filling, Jamie slices 500 g apples, adds a handful of unrefined sugar, 3 pieces of ginger in syrup, chopped, plus a little of the syrup and a handful of blackberries. He stirs it gently together, noting how the blackberries “stain” the rest of the mixture. He washes his hands. Oh, there must be a sink somewhere.

He rolls out the pastry, 3mm thick, between 2 sheets of greaseproof paper (remember, all English-isms today). He “sags it in” a pretty fluted pie dish. He puts the filling in and rolls the top with a rolling pin to remove excess pastry on the edges. Jamie dots 3 oz. of butter on top. Then he brushes the edge with egg (I don’t call it an egg wash, since he didn’t add water to it. I would…a tablespoon.)

Ah, apparently he’s divided the pastry into 2 pieces, because he’s rolling out the other piece (I would say 1/3 of the dough) into a round. He lays the pastry on top of the apple mixture, brushes it with more egg, sprinkles cinnamon, then sugar, on top and cuts a few slits in the top. Not in a pretty circle in the middle, just random slashes all over the top. He bakes it in the bottom of the oven at 180°C. for 40 to 50 minutes. (Alright, you Amurricans, he actually says 180°C or 350°F.)

Commercial for RR’s vacation show. OMG, imagine going to Lisboa and running into RR.

Back to Jamie. Really smoky kitchen. The juice ran out and burned on the bottom of the oven. Perhaps it would be better to bake the pie on the next-to-bottom shelf and put a baking sheet lined with foil underneath on the bottom shelf. Just a thought.

He puts custard from the supermarket (it wasn’t Bird's Custard Powder that he cooked himself, it was already made) in the bottom of a big bowl and places a nice big steaming slice of pie right on top. Yum.

Next is a Steak and Guinness pie (you won’t see the recipe on the website. ANNOYING!) Jamie cooks 3 red onions until they are soft, soft, soft, but he says he only cooked them for 10 minutes. I think it would take more like 20 minutes. He adds rosemary, 3 cloves of garlic, a “nice knob of butter”, 2 sticks of sliced celery, 2 sliced carrots and sliced mushrooms (NOT button, but “field” or Portobello mushrooms). He pours in a can of Guinness, pronouncing the combination “genius”. He sprinkles in flour and a bit of water or stock to just barely cover the meat. He cooks it in the oven at 180°C for 2 hours.

The filling can be used as a stew or a filling for a pie. As a filling, the mixture should be reasonably dry, Jamie tells us. He’s using store-bought puff pastry, because making it can be “a ripe palaver”. His puff pastry isn’t in sheets like ours. It’s in a thick rectangle that has to be rolled out. He cuts off one third and rolls it, instructing us to always roll forward and to keep the dough lightly dusted with flour. He lines a pudding basin shaped dish with the pastry.

He puts 100g of cheddar cheese into the bottom and spoons in the steak mixture. Then another 100g of cheese goes on top which will makes “a little cap on top”. He beats an egg and brushes it around the edge. (I still like adding a little water.)

He rolls out the remaining pastry for the lid. Then he scores it in long lines, which means that he runs his knife down the length of the lid in parallel lines, just barely marking the pastry. He puts it over the top and brushes over more egg, ruching the edges. He bakes it at 180°C for 40 minutes until bubbling on top. Jamie serves up a big piece with frozen peas on top. (I used to do that when the kids' food was too hot.)

Oh that’s nice…a shot of his farmhouse. It does look like a farm.

Jamie takes the savoury pastry and rolls it out to a centimeter thick into a rectangle (a little bigger than an 11 by 15 inch baking sheet, it seems. Remember there is no recipe anywhere…AAARGGHHH!). He lines it into the baking sheet, making about an inch high crust around the edges. (It has to be able to hold in the filling.) He stabs it all over with a fork, so it doesn’t rise. Jamie bakes it blind for 6 to 7 minutes at 180°C.

He sweats 2 chopped red onions in olive oil for 10 minutes (or longer). He adds spinach from the garden, which definitely didn’t look like baby spinach and leaves of “stinging nettles”, which look like weeds with poisonous berries attached. He adds just the leaves and berries…no stems.

That all cooks down for a bit with a knob of butter and salt and pepper. Oh, and he adds ONE THIRD of a nutmeg. Now, I love nutmeg, but wouldn’t that be a wee bit too much? Jamie chops up some fresh marjoram and adds that stems and all.

He beats 3 eggs with 500g crème fraîche, a handful of Parmesan, salt and pepper. That’s his basic recipe to which you may add all kinds of flavorings: sun-dried tomatoes, tomatoes, basil, whatever.

Jamie puts the spinach mixture into the baked shell and adds some chopped smoked boiled ham on top. He pours the crème fraîche filling into the middle. If you’ve made the edges high enough, the filling will stay in; if you haven’t, grab some towels. He sprinkles some extra Parmesan on top. Add a little more marjoram and some little “lugs of olive oil”. He bakes it at 180°C for 12 minutes. He takes out the quiche. “Oh, I’m so pleased with that. He’s a good looker, isn’t he?”

Jamie adds a bit of watercress to the top that he dresses with olive oil, lemon juice and salt. “Have you ever seen a tart look so deeply appealing?”, he wonders. No, Jamie, nor a chef. Bravo, what wondrous things he comes up with.

OMG, lookie here. Sandy is on right after. That’s just not right. Could there be a greater difference between a chef cooking with the earth's natural bounty and a promoter of all that is unnatural and processed?


Sold curtains
Made up to within an inch of her life
Artifice and anything artificial rule


Trained CHEF
Rolled out of bed minutes before shooting
Natural ingredients and presentation

1 centimeter = 0.393700787402 inch

500 grams flour = 4 ½ cups flour (The recipe on the FN website says 3½ cups flour. I guess I’d go with that, even though Jamie said 500 grams…but presumably they tested it.)

Greaseproof paper – wax paper without the wax. Use parchment. (I use plastic wrap to roll out my pastry.)

180°C = 350°F

3 mm = 1/8 inch

100 g = 3 ½ oz. cheese, which is a little less than a cup of cheese.


Tracy said...

I haven't caught any of Jamie Oliver's shows yet, but at your recommendation I'll have to set the Tivo!

Shay said...

Maybe Jamie's shed is like Ina's barn??? They apparently don't want us in their homes!! Maybe it's a matter of privacy...can't blame them.

Emiline said...

What if Tyler Florence reads your blog? Wouldn't that be amazing! I think one day he's going to leave his wife for me.

I really feel like making pie after reading this.
I also want to buy that custard powder, because I always see it, but haven't used it.

Boot Sandra Lee off, completely, and fill the space with more Jamie.

Sue said...

Hi Tracy,
Consider yourself lucky that your Tivo works. Santa brought one to us and the crooked cable company claims they have no cable cards (2 cards are apparently necessary if you want to watch something and record something else separately) and they have no idea when they will have them. Interestingly, if I had gotten THEIR DVR system, I wouldn't have a problem. Something is fishy in cableland, I think. But, YES, do watch Jamie, he's amazing.

I think you may be on to something, except Jamie DID have his original show, I think, supposedly in his house (or a set that looked like a place that COULD have been his house).

I do love Tyler, but part of his appeal is his family, so unless you want to become wife number 2, HANDS OFF!

DO NOT buy Bird's custard powder. The texture is wonderful. Thick and rich, but the taste is so artificial. I didn't realize the guy invented it because his wife was allergic to eggs. But it can't compete with a real custard.

And YEAH! More Jamie, more hot guys!

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

Actually, if Tyler left current wife for Em, she'd be wife #3. I wouldn't want that kind of track record.

There are no single guys on FN that I'd want to jump unfortunately. My husband can't make more than reservations unfortunately.

I always had a thing for Graham Kerr. He's old enough to be my father, but his schtick always got my attention.

Now if I can only watch Jamie's show before Sandy comes on.

Fondue said...

Hi Sue,
I've been reading your blog for a while, it's a nice mix of humour and critique, plus you've steered me to some very good Food Network shows!
I'm glad you're watching Jamie Oliver now; here in Canada, we've been with him pretty much all along, from Naked Chef, through Jamie's School Dinners and his italian adventure. I think he's great (and not bad on the eyes, either!).
Just one thing, you quoted him as saying something was "a ripe palaver", but really he said "a right palaver". It just means a lot of fuss and work.
Thanks for a great blog!

Sue said...

Hey Rach,
Really? Em, you stay away from him!

Interesting about Graham Kerr. He did used to be alot of fun and then he found religion and his joy quotient seemed to have diminished a bit.

Welcome, Fondue. I did think that was a bit weird, which is why I quoted it. Thank you for putting ME right.

Anonymous said...

Who is the manufacturer of the fluted ceramic pie dish Jamie used in the show for his blackberry pie?

thfiv said...

I want to buy a dish like the one Jamie used to make his blacberry pie. Where can I find one and who makes it?

Sue said...

Anon and Thfiv,
Here are some ideas of pie dishes: