Roast sea bream with fennel, sourdough and preserved lemons

Roast sea bream with fennel, sourdough and preserved lemons

SERVES  2                    HANDS-ON TIME 10 MIN, OVEN TIME 35 MIN


Enjoy the classic fresh flavours of this quick and easy sea bream recipe for two with a crisp glass of white wine – it’s a great dish for Friday night as there’s minimal washing up involved.

Alternatively, this Friday fish supper for two will bring the restaurant experience to your dinner table and is indulgent and sophisticated enough for date night.



             CALORIES    788KCALS
                         FAT    40.5G (4.1G SATURATED)
                PROTEIN    74.5G
                      FIBRE   6.7G
                       SALT    3.8G



1 large fennel bulb, sliced (fronds reserved)
4 tbsp olive oil
2 x 450g sustainable sea bream or other round fish such as sea bass, gutted and scaled (see tip)
6 bay leaves
1 large slice sourdough bread, cut into chunks
2 preserved lemons (see Know-how), pith discarded, peel finely sliced, plus 1 tbsp brine
100ml Noilly Prat or other white vermouth
Handful chopped fresh parsley
½ bunch fresh dill, chopped
100g pitted large green olives, roughly sliced (such as halkidiki)
Juice ½ lemon



1. Heat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas 6. Arrange the fennel slices in a shallow roasting tin or dish big enough to hold the fish. Drizzle with 1 tbsp of the oil, season with salt and pepper, then roast for 15 minutes until starting to soften.

2. Slash one side of each fish 3 times with a sharp knife, then tuck a bay leaf into each slash. Remove the fennel from the oven and scatter the sourdough over it. Sit the fish on top, slashed-side up, then sprinkle with the sliced preserved lemons. Drizzle the fish with the brine, 2 tbsp of the olive oil and the vermouth, then season with black pepper only (the brine and lemons are salty).Return the dish/tin to the oven and roast for 20 minutes or until the flesh is opaque and comes away easily from the bones when you test the fish with the point of a knife.

3. Meanwhile, mix the reserved fennel fronds, parsley and dill with the sliced olives, remaining olive oil and the lemon juice. Spoon the herb/olive mix over the fish and serve with buttered potatoes or more sourdough.


delicious. tips

Use the best fish available from your fishmonger on the day. Currently the Marine Conservation Society suggests good quality farmed sea bream are the most sustainable choice.

Preserved lemons have been pickled in brine and add a citrussy boost to dishes. You’ll find them in delis and large supermarkets.



Roast sea bream with fennel, sourdough and preserved lemons
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Halloween Strawberry Shortcake Skull Cake

Halloween Strawberry Shortcake Skull Cake

We topped elegant strawberry shortcake with a ghoulish white chocolate skull in this spectacular Halloween dessert. Pour over the hot strawberry sauce to reveal the surprise inside!

Level: Intermediate

Total: 2 hr 45 min (includes chilling and cooling times)

Active: 1 hr 10 min

Yield: 4 to 6 servings


Chocolate Skull:

4 ounces white chocolate melting wafers

1 tablespoon unrefined coconut oil

4 ounces strawberries, sliced

Cake and Filling:

Nonstick cooking spray, for the pan

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (see Cook’s Note)

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 large egg, at room temperature

1/2 cup sour cream

8 ounces strawberries, sliced

2 teaspoons granulated sugar

2 cups sweetened whipped cream

Strawberry White Chocolate Sauce:

8 ounces strawberries, finely chopped

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup heavy cream

3 ounces red candy melting wafers



1. For the chocolate skull: Add the white chocolate melting wafers and coconut oil to a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 30-second intervals, stirring in between each, until melted and smooth, about 2 minutes.

2. Pour the chocolate mixture into the front and back cavities of a 2-part medium plastic skull mold (3-by-4-by-4-inch) and tilt to swirl the chocolate around until coated entirely (you can also use your finger to swirl the chocolate around). Tap out any excess and freeze until the chocolate is set, about 5 minutes.  

3. Reheat the melted chocolate, if needed, and brush the sides of the mold cavities with a second layer. Freeze until set, about 5 minutes. 

4. Carefully unmold the skull halves and fill one with the sliced strawberries. Microwave the melted chocolate again until smooth, about 30 seconds. Use the melted chocolate as glue to carefully attach the skull halves. Refrigerate until ready to serve. 

5. For the cake and filling: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 6-inch round cake pan with 3-inch sides with nonstick spray. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment and spray the paper. 

6. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl.  

7. Beat the butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until pale yellow, about 2 minutes. Add the confectioners’ sugar and beat on low just to incorporate, then beat on high until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the vanilla and egg, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl, and continue to beat until creamy, about 2 minutes (the mixture will look curdled, but will come back together after everything is combined). With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with the sour cream in 2 additions, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. 

8. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. 

9. Bake until golden on top and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Transfer to a rack and let cool 10 minutes, then run a knife around the edge of the pan, turn the cake out onto the rack, remove the parchment and cool completely.  

10. Meanwhile toss the sliced strawberries and granulated sugar in a medium bowl. Set aside for at least 30 minutes to allow the strawberries to release their juices. 

11. Cut the cake into 3 layers with a long serrated knife. Place a cake layer on a cake stand and top with half of the strawberries. Spread 3/4 cup of the whipped cream on top. Repeat with another cake layer, the remaining strawberries and 3/4 cup whipped cream. Top with the final cake layer and remaining 1/2 cup whipped cream. Position the skull in the center of the whipped cream.

12. For the strawberry white chocolate sauce: Add the strawberries and granulated sugar to a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the strawberries have broken down and thickened slightly, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice and vanilla. Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve and return the liquid to the saucepan (discard the solids). Add the cream and red candy melting wafers to the sauce and heat over medium heat, whisking constantly, until melted and hot, 10 to 15 minutes. 

13. When ready to serve, pour the hot sauce over the center of the chocolate skull.



Cook’s Note

When measuring flour, we spoon it into a dry measuring cup and level off excess. (Scooping directly from the bag compacts the flour, resulting in dry baked goods.)

Halloween Strawberry Shortcake Skull Cake
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Halloween Strawberry Shortcake Skull Cake
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Chocolate Skull:
Cake and Filling:
Strawberry White Chocolate Sauce:
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Banana Cupcakes with Chantilly Icing

Banana Cupcakes with Chantilly Icing

I recently found myself with several over ripe bananas and leftover Buttermilk.  I know over ripe bananas usually mean a batch or two of Banana Bread, but I still had a few loaves in the freezer.  Besides I wasn’t in the mood for Banana Bread.

I was however in the mood for cake!  So why not bake some banana cupcakes?  Then I remember that a local bakery sold this yummy banana cake with Chantilly Icing.  I think Chantilly icing must a a local Hawaii favorite because the recipe isn’t too easy to come by.

You might be wondering what Chantilly Icing is.  Well it’s sort of hard to describe, it’s sweet, creamy, and buttery; kind of but not quite like the frosting on a German Chocolate cake.

In Hawaii Chantilly icing is used on Chantilly Cake which is very similar to a German Chocolate Cake but with macadamia nuts instead of coconut flakes.  It’s also used to top Liliha Bakery’s Coco Puffs, those delectable chocolate cream filled puffs. It’s also used on Banana Cake!

So to make these really yummy Banana Cupcakes with Chantilly Icing I used 2 different recipes.  The Banana Cake recipe and a recipe for that delicious Chantilly Frosting.  The frosting I made was more than enough to ice the cupcakes.  I refrigerated the leftover frosting and used them on a chocolate cake a few days later.

Banana Cupcakes


3/4 Cup Butter, softened to room temperature

2 Cups Sugar

3 Eggs

1 Tsp. Vanilla

1/2 Tsp. Ground Cinnamon

2 Very Ripe Bananas, mashed

2 Tsp. Lemon Juice

3 Cups Flour

1 1/2 Tsp. Baking Soda

1/4 Tsp. Salt

1 1/2 Cup Buttermilk


Preheat Oven to 325 degrees

Line Cupcake tins with cupcake wrappers

Cream together butter and sugar.  Beat in eggs one at a time.

Beat in vanilla and cinnamon.

Add lemon juice to mashed bananas and stir until smooth.

Add to butter mixture.

Sift flour, baking soda, and salt together.

Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk to the butter mixture.

Mix well.

Pour batter into cupcake wraps about 3/4 full.

Smooth tops.

Bake for about 50-60 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Remove from oven and cool.

Frost when completely cooled.

Chantilly Icing


1 2/3 Cup Butter

1 1/2 Cup Evaporated Milk

1 1/2 Cup Baker’s or Caster Sugar

2 Tsp. Vannilla

2 Eggs

2 Egg Yolks

2 Tbs. Corn Starch


Melt Butter in saucepan over medium low heat.

Remove from heat and cool slightly.

Whisk in milk, sugar, and vanilla.

Then whisk in eggs and yolks one at a time.

Cook on medium hear until it comes to s low boil.  Whisking is it intermittently.

Once it boils cook for another 2 minutes continuing to whisk intermittently.

Remove from heat then quickly sift in cornstarch while whisking.  Whisk cornstarch quickly and hard to prevent it from lumping.

Pour into a shallow bowl and cool to room temp.

Cover and refrigerate about 3 hours or until it’s in a spreadable consistency.

Frost cooled  cupcakes.

Banana Cupcakes with Chantilly Icing
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Chantilly Icing
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Frico Cups

Frico Cups

Serve your raw green salad in frico cups!

Frico cups are small cups made entirely out of cheese. They are naturally low carb, gluten-free, and completely irresistible.


Image result for Frico CupsYou know that little bit of cheese that oozes onto the skillet when making a grilled cheese sandwich? The stuff that turns dark and crispy and perfect for popping in your mouth? Frico cups are essentially an entire serving bowl made of that rich crispy cheese.

You can make them in various sizes. Yet I’ve discovered if you bake them about the size of a paper muffin liner and fill them with a smaller serving of salad, they’re more likely to disappear!

Frico is what Italians call the wafer like crisp that forms when you bake or fry shredded cheese.

This delicate, baked Parmesan cheese cups are deceptively easy to make. You can fill them with whatever you want, but grape tomato, olive and feta make for a light and refreshing snack.



For the Frico Cups

Parmesan cheese (3 tbsp. per cup)

For the Grape Tomato, Olive and Feta Salad

4 c. grape tomatoes, halved

1/4 c. green olives, sliced and pitted

1/3 c. crumbled feta cheese

1 tbsp. olive oil

Kosher salt

black pepper

Basil, for garnish

For the Sesame Cucumber and Radish Salad

1 English cucumber, finely chopped

3 large radishes, thinly sliced

1 tbsp. lime juice

2 tsp. toasted sesame oil

2 tbsp. black and white sesame seeds

Kosher salt

black pepper

For the Farro, Corn and Green Onion Salad

4 ears corn, husked

2 c. cooked farro

2 green onions, thinly sliced

3 tbsp. lemon juice

1 1/2 tbsp. olive oil

Kosher salt

black pepper

  1. For the Frico Cups: Grate Parmesan and make piles, 2 inches apart, on a lined baking sheet. Bake at 375 degrees F until melted but not quite brown (6 minutes); use a thin metal spatula to quickly transfer to muffin pan, pressing lightly in centers. Cool before filling.
  2. For the Grape Tomato, Olive and Feta Salad: In medium bowl, combine grape tomatoes, green olives, feta cheese, sherry vinegar, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper; garnish with basil.
  3. For the Sesame, Cucumber and Radish Salad: Toss cucumbers and radishes with lime juice, sesame oil, and sesame seeds. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. For the Farro, Corn and Green Onion Salad: Preheat grill on medium-high. Grill corn 10 minutes, turning occasionally. Remove from grill, let cool. Cut kernels off into large bowl; toss with farro, green onions, lemon juice, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

Simple, summery and a great little appetizer with a salty parmesan bowl of its own.!



Puff Pastry Chicken Potpie

Puff Pastry Chicken Potpie

What’s better than a chicken pot pie? A chicken pot pie topped with a flaky puff pastry!


Don’t you love it when you decide on what to make for dinner and you just so happen to have everything you need right in your very own kitchen?  It’s rare, but it happened to me when I had a craving for chicken pot pie.

I started rummaging through my fridge, pantry, and freezer, and was amazed to find that I could pull this together without even running to the store.  I found puff pastry leftover from my Peach Tarts, heavy cream from my Salted Caramel Oat Bars, and fresh thyme from my Slow Cooker Pot Roast.



  • 1 package (17.3 ounces) frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1 teaspoon pepper, divided
  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme


  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh sage or 1/4 teaspoon rubbed sage
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon half-and-half cream, divided
  • 2 cups frozen mixed vegetables (about 10 ounces)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 large egg yolk



  1. Preheat oven to 400°. On a lightly floured surface, roll each pastry sheet into a 12×10-in. rectangle. Cut one sheet crosswise into six 2-in. strips; cut remaining sheet lengthwise into five 2-in. strips. On a baking sheet, closely weave strips to make a 12×10-in. lattice. Freeze while making filling.
  2. Toss chicken with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon butter over medium-high heat; saute chicken until browned, 5-7 minutes. Remove from pan.
  3. In same skillet, heat remaining butter over medium-high heat; saute onion until tender, 5-7 minutes. Stir in garlic and herbs; cook 1 minute. Stir in flour until blended; cook and stir 1 minute. Gradually stir in broth and 1 cup cream. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly; cook and stir until thickened, about 2 minutes.
  4. Stir in vegetables, lemon juice, chicken and the remaining salt and pepper; return to a boil. Transfer to a greased 2-1/2 qt. oblong baking dish. Top with lattice, trimming to fit.
  5. Whisk together egg yolk and remaining cream; brush over pastry. Bake, uncovered, until bubbly and golden brown, 45-55 minutes. Cover loosely with foil if it starts getting too dark. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.

Test Kitchen Tips

  • For a crisper crust, bake on a rimmed baking sheet. Trim lattice to fit baking dish, then place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake at 400&deg. for 20-25 minutes. Then place on top of your hot filling before serving.
  • Unless otherwise specified, Taste of Home recipes are tested with lightly salted butter. Unsalted, or sweet, butter is sometimes used to achieve a buttery flavor, such as in shortbread cookies or buttercream frosting. In these recipes, added salt would detract from the buttery taste desired.
  • To make a fresh garlic clove easy to peel, gently crush it with the flat side of a large knife blade to loosen the peel. If you don’t have a large knife, you can crush the garlic with a small can. The peel will come right off.
  • Check out 11 of our most genius crumb crust ideas.


Nutrition Facts

1 serving: 523 calories, 25g fat (10g saturated fat), 118mg cholesterol, 768mg sodium, 42g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 6g fiber), 30g protein.


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Puff Pastry Chicken Potpie
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