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Paul Carmichael's great cake

"Great cake, also known in Barbados as black cake or rum cake, is a variation of British Christmas cake that's smashed with rum and falernum syrup," says Momofuku Seiobo chef Paul Carmichael. "This festive cake varies from household to household but they all have two things in common: tons of dried fruit and rum. It's a cake that should be started at least a month out so the fruit can marinate in the booze. Start this recipe up to five weeks ahead to macerate the fruit and baste the cake."

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Pickled vegetables


"These are not pickles in the sense of being made months in advance," says Ross Lusted, "but a quick pickle." You can, however, prepare them early in the day so you have more time with your guests.

You'll need

8 baby cucumbers (about 250gm), unpeeled, cut into 2cm-thick slices 50 ml chardonnay vinegar 3 yellow mustard or thyme flowers (see note) 1 tsp brown mustard seeds 100 ml extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra to serve   Pink onions and capers 150 ml extra-virgin olive oil 80 ml (1/3 cup) sherry vinegar 8 long red shallots (about 400gm; see note), cut into 2cm-thick slices 2 tbsp baby capers in vinegar   Soft leeks 8 young leeks (2cm diameter), trimmed Finely grated rind of 1 lemon, juice of ½ 1 fresh bay leaf 1 tbsp olive oil   Broad beans and parmesan 400 gm podded broad beans (1kg unpodded) 1 tbsp olive oil 1 garlic clove, finely chopped 1 tbsp lemon juice 20 gm finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Method

  • 01
  • Toss cucumber in 2 tsp sea salt and set aside for 20 minutes. Rinse under cold water and drain well. Warm vinegar, flowers and mustard seeds in a saucepan over low heat (20-30 seconds), remove from heat, add oil. Pour over cucumbers and set aside to pickle (30 minutes).
  • 02
  • Meanwhile, for pink onions and capers, heat oil, vinegar and 50ml water in a shallow frying pan. Add shallot, cut-side down, season to taste, add capers and cook over low heat, turning halfway, until starting to soften (10 minutes). Set aside to cool, turning occasionally to pickle evenly.
  • 03
  • For soft leeks, preheat oven to 170C. Place leeks in a small baking dish with lemon rind and juice, bay leaf and 1 tsp sea salt, drizzle with olive oil. Cover with baking paper and roast until leeks are tender (30-35 minutes). Cool, then cut into small pieces and set aside.
  • 04
  • For broad beans and parmesan, blanch broad beans until just tender (1-2 minutes). Refresh, drain, peel and combine with olive oil and garlic in a small saucepan over low heat until warmed through (30 seconds-1 minute). Season with salt and lemon juice, transfer to a serving dish, top with finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano and serve warm with pickled vegetables (at room temperature) and fougasse.

Note Thyme flowers, mustard flowers and long red shallots (also known as banana shallots) are available from select greengrocers.


At A Glance

  • Serves 8 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 8 people

Featured in

Nov 2012

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