chocolate tarte

the (mis)adventures of an aussie girl in a kitchen somewhere in europe

01 November 2006

halloween



For the past few months we have been confronted at every turn with the strangest looking little pumpkins. They are sadly inedible, but by all accounts a must-have for the autumn apartment decorations. I took this snap at the Düsseldorf Market about 6 weeks ago and since then we have had one of these pathetic pygmy pumpkins gracing our coffee table.

So I was keen to finally cook something inspired by our little pumpkin friend and came across a recipe for Pumpkin-Potato Rösti, a fitting companion to the Zürich Chicken. Struck fervently by the holiday spirit, I over-adapted the side dish to my purpose, leaving out the potato and discovered that they refused to bind. A mistake I won't be making next Halloween.

These apricot muffins were baked in the event that some delightful little children might ring our doorbell politely requesting sweets. But since we live on a road affectionately referred to as the Beer Mile, I may have been tricking myself there. In any case, the apricots I used came courtesy of my shopping spree in Strasbourg, and had been marinating in amaretto, a real treat for us. Happy Halloween.




Zürich Chicken
serves 2
1 onion, diced
125g brown mushrooms, quartered
1 small cooking apple
2 chicken breasts (approx 175 g each), sliced
75ml white wine
100g chestnuts (vacuum packed)
200ml cream
salt and pepper
marjoram

Season the sliced chicken breasts with salt and pepper and brown in a hot pan for about 2 minutes, then remove. Fry the mushrooms for about a minute, de-seed the apple and cut into eighths and add to the mushrooms along with the diced onion. Cook for a further minute, then pour in the wine and then let bubble for 5 minutes. Add the chestnuts and cream, bring to the boil and then reduce the heat and simmer til the sauce becomes creamy. Put the chicken back in the pan, season with salt and pepper and garnish with fresh marjoram.

Pumpkin-Potato Rösti
serves 2
2 potatoes (400g)
200g pumpkin
oil
salt

Grate the potatoes and pumpkin and season with salt. Heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan, add the grated vegetables and after 5 minutes form into rösti shapes. Over a medium heat fry for 4-5 minutes on each side or until golden brown and absorb the excess oil on paper towels.

Apricot and Marzipan Muffins
makes 12
100g marzipan
150g soft butter (or margarine)
100g sugar
1 packet vanilla sugar (7g)
1 teaspoon amaretto
3 eggs (medium)
100g plain flour
50g almond meal
25g corn starch
1 and a half teaspoons baking powder
12 canned apricot halves
2 tablespoons apricot jam
75g dark chocolate
pinch salt

Heat the oven to 175 degrees. Finely chop the marzipan. Cream the butter, sugar, vanilla sugar, amaretto and salt. Add the eggs separately. Stir in the flour, almond meal, starch and baking powder, then add the chopped marzipan to the mixture. Spoon the dough into a muffin tray and bake for 10 minutes. Remove tray, place an apricot half over each muffin (so that the round curve faces up) and bake for a further 10 -15 minutes.
When the muffins are at room temperature, heat the apricot jam, strain through a sieve and brush over the muffin. Chop the chocolate finely and melt over a bain-marie. Pour into a plastic bag, cut off a tiny corner and decorate each muffin.

1 Comments:

  • At 5:29 vorm., Anonymous Anonym said…

    Trick or Treat? These muffins are much too good for any children who come knocking! I speak from experience when I say all they want is lollies!!
    The Zurich chicken and the potato-pumpkin rosti look like a perfect and delicious pairing. Frozen chestnuts?

     

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