21/05/2010

Liver pate - Lifrarkæfa

I love liver pate, but I have never tried to make it, probably because you can get perfectly good liver pate in most supermarkets in Iceland. This sounds like a good recipe:

700 g liver
300 ml milk
2 cooked potatoes
1 tbs chopped, browned onion
3 eggs
100 g butter or 300 g fatty bacon
7 tbs flour
salt and pepper
dash of cardamom
1 fillet of spice-pickled herring (or about 10 anchovy fillets)

Soak the liver in cold water for about 30 minutes. Remove the membranes and blood vessels. Chop coarsely and put through a grinder 4 times, with the herring/anchovies, onion, and bacon (if using). Add the potatoes for the last round of grinding.

If you're using a food processor, dump everything above in at once and process into a smooth paste, using the chopping blades.

Mix together the flour and spices and mix into the liver paste along with the cooled melted butter (if using). Add the eggs and mix well. Finally stir in the milk, little by little.

Grease a pate mould and press the raw pate into it. Cover with a cheesecloth and cook in a water-bath(*) for about 1 hour.

May be served hot or cold. A classic delicious Danish smørrebrødrecipe calls for dark rye bread with warm liver pate, bacon and mushrooms.

I like liver pate best smeared on Danish rye bread and topped with pickled red beets. The first time I brought such a sandwich with me to school for my mid-morning snack, the other kids thought the sandwich filling was raw meat!
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(*) Water-bath: Heat an oven to medium temperature (about 180°C). Bring to the boil enough water to cover the bottom of an oven-proof pan (e.g. a jelly roll pan). Put the pate mould into the pan, pour the boiling water into the pan and put immediately in the oven to cook.

14/05/2010

Stuffed leg of lamb

This is a rather good Sunday dish. If you don't know how to de-bone a leg of lamb, either buy it de-boned or get your butcher to de-bone it for you.

1 leg of lamb (about 2 kg. before boning)
50 g prunes, stoneless
30 g dried apples
2 tsp. salt
3/4 tsp. pepper

Soak the apple slices to soften. Rub half of the salt and pepper on the inside of the leg of lamb and stuff with the prunes and apple slices. Sew closed. Rub the remaining salt and pepper on the outside of the meat.

Put meat into a greased oven pan and roast at 250°C for about 90 minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the steak shows 160°C. Start by roasting for 10-20 minutes, then add water to cover the bottom of the pan, to a depth of about 1 cm. Baste the meat with the cooking liquid every 15 minutes or so. Top up the water when it starts to boil down.

About 10-15 minutes before the steak is done, remove it from the oven, pour the cooking liquid into a saucepan, through a strainer. Put the steak back into the oven until a nice crust has formed. While it is in the oven, make the sauce:

Skim the fat off the surface of the cooking liquid. Heat in the saucepan. Make a thin, smooth paste from a couple of tbs. of flour and a bit of cold water. When the cooking liquid boils, stir the flour paste into the boiling liquid, stirring with a beater. Pour slowly and when you feel the liquid starting to thicken, stop pouring. Gently simmer the sauce for a couple of minutes, to remove the raw flour taste. Adjust the flavour with salt and pepper, and if you use it, add a little sauce colouring to get a nice, brown colour.

Serve either whole or sliced, with potatoes (poached, caramelised or mashed), sauce and whatever other side dishes you like (I like redcurrant jelly, salad and peas).

01/05/2010

Twice-baked buns - Tvíbökur

Twice-baked bread keeps well and is good in all kinds of sweetened soups, like Sweet Soup, Crowberry Soup, and Cocoa Soup.

250 g flour OR

100 g bread or all-purpose flour and 100 g whole-wheat flour

t tsp baking powder
1 tbs sugar
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
75 g butter or margarine
100-150 ml milk

Sift together the flour, baking powder and cardamom and add the sugar. Add the softened butter or margarine and rub into the dry mix until the mixture is crumbly. Add the milk, no more than needed to make the dough stick together. Knead until smooth and roll up into sausage shapes. Cut into even-sized pieces and roll into balls. Arrange on a greased cookie sheet and bake at 180°C until light brown.

Remove the buns from the oven and cool until they can be handled, then cut in half, put back on the cookie sheet and dry in the oven at a low temperature.

Serve with the above-mentioned sweet soups or with coffee.