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Lamb, Fig and Almond Filo Spiral Pie

Posted by Sue Heward on

Inspired by so many recipes this is a remarkably easy filo pie recipe and pretty fun to make. One to make with the kids (well the rolling up of the pastry steps) and a total showstopper when you bring it to the table.

1 bunch spring onions, finely chopped
1 small leek finely chopped
500g lamb mince
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp ras el hanout (I used Gewurzhaus brand)
6 semi sun dried figs (you can use either black or white or a mix), chopped
1 bunch parsley, finely chopped
Approx 6 medium sized silverbeet leaves finely chopped (you can use any green leaves here, the silverbeet was what I had in the garden) 
Juice of one lemon
Season with salt and pepper
1 375g packet of filo Pastry ( I used Antoniou but I did have leftovers, which I resealed and put back in the fridge)
¾ cup olive oil

100g feta cheese, crumbled in small pieces
1/2 cup flaked almonds

I'm not great at doing this but remember to take your filo out of the fridge at least 2 hours before you begin, to bring it up to room temperature.

Pre-heat your oven to 180 deg Celsius fan forced. Line a 30-33 cm baking tray with baking paper. I end up using at round frypan as my pan, it worked perfectly.

For the filling
Place the lamb mince in a bowl, break it up and add the chopped onion and leeks. Then add the figs, silver beet, spices, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Mix thoroughly. I initially transferred this to a lightly oiled hot frying pan to brown the mince meat. I wanted greater caramelisation so I transferred it to a roasting dish and put in the oven for about 10-15 mins to cook through and caramelise the meat and greens. While this was cooking I made a quick hummus to serve with the pie for dinner. I used Greg Malouf's recipe but with a can of chickpeas thoroughly rinsed so I didn't have to soak overnight (was delicious and super easy and made wonder why I buy pre-made hummus). Once the mince is brown let it cool off outside the oven before assembling the pie. 

Assembling the spiral pie
Place one sheet of filo on your counter/bench, with the long edge of the pastry in front of you. Brush with olive oil. Place another sheet of pastry on top and brush with oil.

Spread 4 heaped tablespoons of the filling along the length of the pastry, approximately a couple centimetres from the bottom long edge and one centimetre from the pastry sides. I sprinkled on top the of the filling small crumbles of the feta cheese and flaked almonds.

Roll the pastry tightly to form a log. Roll the log into a coil and transfer to the centre of the baking tray.

Continue to make the logs with the remaining pastry until you run out of filling placing each log around the first centre coil to form a larger spiral. Brush with olive oil.

Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the pastry is golden. 

Serves 4-6 people with other accompaniments. We had this for dinner with brown rice, Greek yoghurt, homemade hummus, tomato chutney and carrot/cucumber crudites. A very eclectic dinner that the whole family totally loved.

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Rosé Panna Cotta with Sticky Quince Syrup and Figs

Posted by Sue Heward on

I have followed cookbook author and nutritionist Melanie Lionello for sometime on instagram (@frommylittlekitchen). I love her down to earth passion for food, Italy and her Nonna and most recently her fantastic reviews on Panettone leading into Christmas. I was totally thrilled when Melanie tried some of our sticky quince figs and syrup and even went so far as write a recipe for us. Introducing Melanie's Rosé Panna Cotta with Sticky Quince Syrup and Figs.

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The Ultimate Rhubarb and Fruit Crumble

Posted by Sue Heward on

Belinda Jeffery is one of those cookbook writers that not only explains her recipe for you, but one who tells you about the ambience of the room, the village traditions and shares her baking wisdom very graciously. I started with her Rhubarb and strawberry crumble then made this creation below my own.

I hope you love it, we all thought this dish rocked the Father's Day table on Sunday. I have also put together for you our Christmas Baker's Pack including the Spectacular Diced Fruit, Sticky Quince Syrup and our very new Candied Mixed Citrus Peel...Perfect for making this recipe. Get in quick we only have 50 packs available at a super special price.

The Ultimate Rhubarb Fruit Crumble

Serves 10 generously

350g rhubarb, washed and cut into lengths (I was aiming for 3 cm)
4 apples, peeled, thinly sliced
½ cup (110g) caster sugar
150g spectacular diced dried fruit
50g candied peel
4 tbpns of sticky quince syrup
Icing sugar, for dusting
Vanilla bean ice cream or thick cream, to serve

180g plain flour
125g caster sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
180g cold unsalted butter, cut into small chunks
1/2 cup rolled or quick oats

Method (you can watch me put this together here)

Preheat your oven to 200C.

In a large bowl coat the rhubarb and apple slices with most of the caster sugar. In a second smaller bowl coat the diced fruit and peel with the remaining castor sugar.

I layered the fruit into my oven dish but you could just scoop the fruit mixture in. Starting with apples I did a layer then rhubarb pieces lined up alongside each other, then sprinkled the dived fruit/candied peel mix. I repeated this process again ending with a final layer of apple slices on top. I then finished with drizzling the sticky quince syrup over the apple layer. I used a round ceramic dish with a diameter at the top of 24 cm and 8 cm high (tampering to a smaller round base). You are aiming for a wide diameter and high sides.

For the crumble, I hand mixed the flour, caster sugar, cinnamon, salt, oats and then scattered the cubed butter over the top. You can blend with your fingers; I just used a stick blender (careful to not lift up the blender why its still blitzing otherwise you will have crumble flying everywhere).  You are looking for a crumble not a paste here.

Sprinkle the crumble evenly over the fruit mixture, then into the oven for 35-40 minutes (As Belinda says 'until it looks crisp and golden, and the juices from the fruit bubble up through it here and there').

I did leave the crumble cool slightly before we served for dessert on Father's day this year. Serve with vanilla bean ice cream or cream.

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Sue's Fig and Orange Mincemeat

Posted by Sue Heward on

I stumbled on a great article/recipes from with Felicity Cloake's mincemeat recipe and it really kicked me into gear to try to get more organised for Christmas this year. Which in baking terms means starting now - such a scary prospect but I really loved Felicity's recipe with our new Spectacular Diced Fruit Mix so here is my version. Felicity does suggest making the mincemeat as Christmas gifts but to be completely honest I think I'm much more likely to bake mince pies in the lead up to Christmas and take to family and friends. I'm pretty excited about making this happens this year, our range of mince pies locally aren't always great.

I hope you love this recipe as much as I do.

Fig and orange mincemeat

650g Spectacular Diced Fruit Mix
1 apple grated
100g currants
75g almonds, roughly chopped
150g suet (I used chopped suet from my friends at Border Park Organics)
250g Sticky Quince Syrup
1 tsp Christmas spice (I used Gewurzhaus Christmas Cake and Pudding Spice)
100ml orange muscat or liqueur (I used Brown Brothers)


Mix together the dried fruit mix, apple, currants, almonds in a large bowl. Stir in the chopped suet and then fold through sticky quince syrup and lastly the muscat. Stir well. If your mix looks a bit dry you can add the juice of an orange.

Spoon into sterilised jars, seal and leave for at least two weeks. I'm planning to keep mine for about two and half months then start baking pies with it. A note it will start to get hot here in the Riverland so I will put my jars in the fridge to prevent any chance of mould. 

Makes 3 x 500ml jars (or Fowler's no 20 jars).

if you put your camera on your phone to the QR code below it will take you to a reel I have done showing the steps I used to made my batch of fig and orange mincemeat.

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Sticky fruit pudding with salted caramel & coconut topping

Posted by Sue Heward on

This recipe will knock you socks offer. A total delight from a Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh recipe with my little twists added to include our diced dried fruit and sticky quince syrup (because they are a flavour match made in heaven).

Sticky Fruit Pudding with Salted Caramel and Coconut Topping

400g Singing Magpie diced dried fruit
1 tspn bicarbonate of soda
250 mls water
2 tlbspns Sticky Quince Syrup
200g plain flour
2 tspn baking powder
1/4 tspn salt
125g unsalted butter at room temp
200g caster sugar
1 large egg (again I try to have this a room temp)
1 tspn vanilla extract

Salted caramel coconut topping
75 g unsalted butter
1 tlbspn Sticky Quince Syrup
95g soft brown sugar
60 ml thickened cream
95g shredded coconut
1/4 tspn salt

Place the diced dried fruit, sticky quince syrup, bicarb soda and water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, then simmer over a medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring from time to time. Remove from the heat and set aside until cool.

Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C Fan. I used a muffin tray and muffin liners. You can also use lined bottomless cake rings on a baking tray. 

Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together into a bowl and set aside. Place the butter and sugar in an electric mixer and beat on a medium-high speed for about 2 minutes, until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until combined. Reduce the speed to low and, in alternate batches, fold in the dried fruit mix and the sifted dry ingredients.

Divide the mix between the muffin liners and bake for about 25 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Ideally make the topping while the cake is baking but I did forget, lucky this topping comes together very quickly. Place all the ingredients for the topping in a saucepan and stir over a low heat until the butter is melted and the ingredients are combined.

Once the cakes are cooked, remove from the oven (keep the oven on) and spoon about 1½ tablespoons of the topping mixture over the surface of each pudding. Return to the oven for another 12 minutes, or until the topping is golden brown.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 10 minutes, or until they come to room temperature, before transferring to a wire rack to cool before serving.

These will keep for up to 2 days at room temperature (or in the fridge, if it’s particularly warm) in an airtight container. Serve them as they are, or better still warm them through for 5 minutes in an oven or the microwave and serve with some cream or ice-cream.

Utterly delicious. A total crowd pleaser. Makes 12

UPDATED: If you are looking for more recipes to use our Spectacular diced dried fruit mix here is my list so far:

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