Get savvy this Women’s Day

The Star Early Edition - - VERVE - Black­bot­tom cheese­cake squares

This is a guilty plea­sure of mine: a sim­ple, yet strik­ing no-bake cheese­cake that does not re­quire too much work, but is still in­dul­gent. It’s im­por­tant to use good qual­ity cream cheese for this recipe.

Makes 12 Preparation time: 20 min­utes, plus chilling

Cook­ing time: 5 min­utes 350g Oreo bis­cuits 125g un­salted but­ter, melted 2 tsp pow­dered gela­tine 4 tbsp hot wa­ter 175g white choco­late, roughly

chopped 350g cream cheese 300ml (½ pint) dou­ble cream 1 tsp vanilla bean paste 100g golden caster sugar

Line the base of a 23cm square spring­form cake tin with bak­ing pa­per. Us­ing a knife, open up 250g of the Oreo bis­cuits.

Scrape the creamy fill­ing into a large bowl and set aside. Put the bis­cuits into a food pro­ces­sor and whizz un­til they re­sem­ble fine bread­crumbs. Add the melted but­ter and mix un­til well com­bined. Us­ing a ta­ble­spoon, press the bis­cuit base evenly into the pre­pared tin and leave to firm up in the re­frig­er­a­tor.

Mean­while, put the gela­tine into a small heat­proof bowl, pour over the four ta­ble­spoons of wa­ter and set aside. Melt the choco­late in a heat­proof bowl set over a saucepan of barely sim­mer­ing wa­ter, mak­ing sure the sur­face THIS open sand­wich is vis­ually stun­ning due to the con­trast of colours, but more im­por­tantly it tastes amaz­ing. Makes 16 Preparation time: 30 min­utes, plus ris­ing and cooling Cook­ing time: 20 min­utes

400g skin­less Scot­tish salmon fil­let,finely diced 3-4 tbsp créme fraîche 70g ca­pers, rinsed 2tbsp finely chopped flat-leaf pars­ley 2tbsp finely chopped dill, plus ex­tra to

gar­nish 100g keta (salmon roe) freshly ground black pep­per For the fo­cac­cia 500g strong white bread flour 2tsp salt 2 x 7g sa­chets fast-action dried yeast ½ tsp freshly grated nut­meg 2tbsp olive oil, plus ex­tra for oil­ing and

driz­zling 300ml cold wa­ter 200g spinach purée sea salt flakes First, make the fo­cac­cia. Put the flour, salt, yeast, nut­meg, oil and 250ml of the wa­ter into a large bowl. Us­ing your hands or a wooden spoon, gen­tly com­bine to form a dough, then knead in the bowl for 5 min­utes, grad­u­ally adding the re­main­ing wa­ter and spinach purée.

Turn the dough out on to an oiled work sur­face and con­tinue knead­ing for a fur­ther 5 min­utes. Re­turn the dough to the bowl, cover with cling­film and leave to rise in a warm place for about 30 min­utes, or un­til dou­bled in size.

Line two bak­ing sheets, 20 x 26cm with bak­ing pa­per.

Turn the dough out on to the work sur­face and di­vide into two equal pieces. Us­ing your hands, press the dough into the pre­pared bak­ing sheets, mak­ing sure it reaches into the cor­ners.

Cover with cling­film and leave to rise for an hour. Pre­heat the oven to 220°C Us­ing your fin­ger­tips, cre­ate lit­tle dim­ples all over the fo­cac­cia, then driz­zle with olive oil and add a good sprin­kling of sea salt flakes.

Bake in the oven for 20 min­utes un­til golden.

Driz­zle with more oil while still hot, then trans­fer to cooling racks and leave to cool.

Mean­while, put the salmon, créme fraiche, ca­pers and herbs into a bowl and sea­son with pep­per. Mix well, then gen­tly fold in the keta. Cover with cling­film and chill in the re­frig­er­a­tor un­til re­quired.

Cut the fo­cac­cia into 16 rec­tan­gles, each about 10 x 5cm.

Us­ing two spoons, scoop a quenelle of salmon tartare on to each piece of bread.

Gar­nish with dill and chill un­til ready to serve.

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