Come together for date night
Share a little joy during lockdown and recreate our perfect date night at home with delectable treats from Clay, the Caker, and our very own Directors - Liam & Steve. From afar, or within your bubble, come together.
TO SET THE TONE:
Steve + Liam's Chilli Margarita
90 mls Reposado Tequila
3 chillis, chopped (keep seeds)
Juice of 2 limes
Juice of 1 lemon
Juice of 1 orange
1 tablespoon of sugar syrup
The hard out A-student option is to infuse your tequila in an airtight container for around 5 to 8 hours (or more if you want it H-O-T). But if you're after a quickie, then just chop the chillis and give them a muddle in the bottom of a mixing glass (with seeds for extra punch).
When ready to make the margarita, pour caster sugar in a small bowl. Rub a glass with the lime wedge, then rim with sugar.
In the mixing glass with your chillis, add the tequila, lime, lemon and orange juice, along with the sugar syrup . Fill with ice, shake vigorously.
Fill your rimmed glass with ice. Strain Margarita into the glass and serve - make sure to use a wee sieve so you catch all the little bitties. Chop off the pointy ends of the chilli and pop in your glass as the garnish.
Clay's Grilled Greens with Sweet Tahini and Sprouted Sunflower seeds
For the dish:
A handful of sunflower seeds
2-3 servings of green vegetables (pre-blanched)
For the sweet tahini:
75g tahini paste
1 small garlic clove
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey (or soft brown sugar if you want it vegan)
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
2 tablespoons of mirin
Big pinch of salt
First sprout the seeds. Soak a few handfuls of organic hulled sunflower seeds in water overnight, then discard the water and repeat for another 6-8 hours at room temperature. The seeds should be opening at one end by the end of the second soak. Once they open, drain them and leave them to dry. This process helps the flavour of the seeds once deep fried. If your seeds don't begin to sprout then don't worry. Drain and dry them anyway, they will still be yum once deep fried.
Deep fry the dry seeds at 180c for a minute or so until they develop a golden colour, and begin to smell of popcorn. Take them out before they get too dark they will continue to cook once out of the oil. Remove and strain on kitchen paper. Salt them while they are hot and reserve to garnish the dish.
Note - If you can't be bothered sprouting or frying the seeds then oven toasting some seeds in oil and salt will give you a similar result.
At Clay we've used Choy sum or Kai lan for this dish but it will work well with any green vegetables like sprouting broccoli, beans, or even slices of regular broccoli.
Once your veg is clean and prepared it needs to be pre-blanched to keep the final grill time short. Use your judgement, if it's beans then a quick 20 sec blanch, bigger more fibrous veges will need more time. After blanching, cool rapidly in cold or iced water. Then set aside.
To prepare the sweet tahini sauce, blend all of the ingredients. The sauce will look very thin but the tahini makes it thicken up a bit over time.
Now it's time to finish the dish, splash your pre-blanched veg with some olive oil, season with pepper and salt then cook at a very high temp either in your oven on grill or in a hot grill pan on the hob. You want a bit of colour and char on the outsides. Without wilting the life and freshness away.
Take your grilled vegetables and plate them, spoon over a generous drizzle of the sauce and then top with the sunflower seeds.
Thanks to @thecaker
For the cake:
100g roasted walnuts
200g butter, softened
200g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 free range eggs
100g all-purpose white flour
100g ground almonds
1 tbsp rose water
For the icing:
200g cream cheese
2 tbsp liquid honey
1 tsp vanilla extract with seeds 2 tsp rose water
For the decorations:
Handful of chopped roasted walnuts
Handful of dried or fresh rose petals
3 cubes rose Turkish delight, cut into small pieces
1. Preheat the oven to 170°C on fan bake. Line a 22cm pan with baking paper.
2. In a food processor, blitz the walnuts until a coarse flour is formed. Set aside.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter, sugar and vanilla extract until pale, light and fluffy.
4. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating between each addition.
5. Gradually add in the flour, ground almonds and roughly ground walnuts and mix until just combined. Fold through the rose water.
6. Spoon the batter into the pan and spread out to the sides.
7. Bake for approximately 40 minutes or until golden in colour, springy to the touch and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
8. Allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes before turning out onto a cooling rack.
9. Meanwhile, make the icing. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the cream cheese by itself until completely smooth. Add in the honey, vanilla extract and rose water and mix until combined.
10. Once the cake is completely cool, spread a layer of icing onto it and decorate with the walnuts, rose petals and Turkish delight pieces.