I am so lucky with my job, I get to visit the most Amazing places and Macamore buffalo farm was one of those! What a treat to get to visit the farmer that rears the animals and get to see the buffalo themselves. they were beauties although they were very keen to get to the far side of the gate with us, we weren't so keen on this!! Anyway they're a small business in Wexford and Liam is just brilliant. I got to try a few of the different cuts which I created some recipes for you all with. This ones a firm favourite of mine. their burgers have nothing added, they're pure minced meat from the topside and they are only gorgeous.
2 large onions, thinly sliced
50g plain flour
4 macamore buffalo burgers
2 gherkins, finely diced
1 tbsp truffle oil
25g parmesan, finely grated
2 tsp white wine vinegar
100g gruyere, sliced
4 brioche buns, to serve
small handful mixed leaves, to serve
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
IHeat a medium pot with sunflower oil, you'll need enough so it is at least a third full. In a large bowl combine the onions and flour, toss to coat. Once the oil is hot, it should have reached about 160C, you can sacrifice one onion and if it goes crispy in about 30 seconds it is ready to go! Add a small bundle in at a time and using a metal tongs, once they have gone crispy remove onto a plate lined with kitchen paper, repeat until they are all done, sprinkle over sea salt and toss. Keep an eye on these onions when they're cooking as they can turn too brown very quickly!
Next heat a large frying pan with a little oil over a medium heat, add the burgers and cook for 8 minutes on either side or until cooked. While they are cooking combine the mayonnaise, gherkins, truffle oil, parmesan and vinegar and stir to evenly combine. When the burgers are almost cooked top each one with a little cheese and allow to melt.
Now to assemble. place the base of the bun on the plate, lash on that sauce followed by some mixed leaves, a burger and finally a good handful of the crispy onions and dig in!
May is all about fresh flavours, the start of the local grown summer fruits and flowers, lots of them! So what better cake to make my Gran for her birthday than a cake filled with all these lovely things, some of my favourite in fact! It went down a treat for her birthday she couldn't get over the size of it and absolutely loved it. If you're looking for a cake to win over a crowd this is the one for one, there's sponge and pavlova and lots of other lovely stuff so what's not to love! For this cake I like to make some of the elements in advance so it's merely just assembly on the day, if so make the pavlova ahead of time and the lemon curd, the sponge is best made on the day or day before.
For the sponge
150g caster sugar
175g self raising flour
1 tbsp poppy seeds
For the pavlova
6 egg whites
350g caster sugar
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp cornflour
For the lemon curd
3 lemons, zest and juice
125g caster sugar
500ml cream, whipped
small handful mint leaves
Preheat oven to 160 celcius fan. Grease and line two 20cm round springform tins with parchment paper and set aside.
Firstly make the sponge, separate the eggs placing the egg whites in one large bowl, whisk until stiff peaks form. In a separate bowl whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until pale then stir through the flour, milk and poppy seeds. Finally mix through a heaped tablespoon of the whisked egg whites until stiff and then fold through the remaining egg whites until all the ingredients are evenly incorporated and you have a nice light batter. place in the tins in the oven for 15 minutes or until golden and a skewer inserted comes out clean.
While this is cooking start making your pavlovas. Line two large baking trays with parchment paper and mark out two 16cm circles on them. whisk the egg whites until stiff in a stand alone mixer then slowly add the sugar until it has increased in size and glossy. mix through the cornflour and white wine vinegar. Divide the mixture between the two trays. create a circular deep pavlova bringing it out to where it has been marked (this is smaller than the size of the tins but don't worry as it will expand). Use a small offset pallet knife to shape the pavlova with nice edges and swirls. Place in the oven, reduce the temperature to 120 and allow to bake for 45 minutes, the outside will be crisp but inside still soft. Turn off the oven and allow to cool with the door slightly ajar.
Next up is the lemon curd, place the lemon zest and juice into a small saucepan along with the eggs and caster sugar, whisk until smooth then using a spatula stir, over a low heat, not allowing it to stick to the bottom of the pan. cook over a gentle heat for 4-5 minutes until it has slightly thickened. strain through a fine mesh sieve and leave to cool.
When all the elements have cooled and you are ready to assemble whisk the cream until soft peaks form. Place one layer of sponge on a cake stand and smear with quarter of the lemon curd. Place on layer of the pavlova on top of this along with half the cream and another quarter of the lemon curd, sprinkle over half the raspberries, Repeat this process again topping the final layer with the flowers and mint leaves. DIG IN!