Cold start to Famers Market

Early start and bloody cold, i was silly enough to think winter had passed us by. At the Farmers Market today i celebrated "International Egg Day". And to be honest why shouldn't these amazingly versatile little parcels be rejoiced! I rejoiced in the NY Baked Cheesecake, as did everyone else who par-took in the demonstrations. If you have the time and want a dessert that is quite satisfyingly delicious i highly recommend this one. If you are in Dunedin, contact Evansdale Cheese as he makes the curds weekly and they make all the difference to the Cheesecake.
anyway thank you for braving the cold today and for always being so enthusiastic towards my demonstrations.

INTERNATIONAL EGG DAY - I suppose if any product deserves such an honour it sure is the humble egg! I for one could not survive, what would I cook? How would I make a sponge, or whip up a quick meal in minutes if I didn’t have the “ Egg”. We are going to celebrate the Egg and the Producers who loving raise these happy hens!

Manuka Smoked Egg and Herb Omelette
Serves 1

3 Free Range Eggs
Salt and pepper
15g butter
Handful of delicate herbs, chervil, parsley, chives,

Heat up a small/medium size omelette pan.
In a bowl, lightly whisk together the eggs, and salt and pepper.
Roughly chop the herbs.
Add the butter to the heated pan and swirl around. Add the egg mixture and using a fork move the mix gently round the pan. Now allow the mixture to set and sprinkle over the herbs. Tilt the pan gradually and allow the omelette to slide down. With a spatula, gently lift one half of the omelette onto the other. Now carefully place onto a plate and enjoy. A good omelette should be slightly runny!

FREE RANGE PARSI EGGS these spicy scrambled eggs are typical of the Parsi cuisine of India and Pakistan and make for the perfect lazy weekend

Serves 2

2 Tablespoon butter
1 onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon curry powder
1 red chilli, finely chopped
2 tomatoes, seeds removed, finely chopped (when in season)
6 free range eggs
50ml cream
1 Tablespoon coriander
4 slices buttered sourdough toast, to serve

Melt the butter in a frying pan and fry the onion and garlic for 4-5 minutes, or until soft.
Add the spices and chilli and cook for a further 4-5 minutes, or until fragrant and well combined. Add the tomatoes if using and cook for a further 3-4 minutes, or until softened.
Beat the eggs and cream together in a bowl, then add the mixture to the pan and cook, stirring constantly, until the eggs are just set. Stir in the coriander
Spoon the eggs onto the toast to serve.

CURDS - are so versatile and cool actually. I remember eating them whilst travelling in the states melted over fries of all things. But I also remember having a potato, bacon and cheese dish in the French Alps which I have never forgotten. It really is the perfect comfort food for these cold winter nights.
TARTIFLETTE - potatoes, bacon, onion and cheese
serves 6
1kg good quality potatoes - Desiree
1 medium onion
200g smoked bacon
1 clove garlic
2 tablespoons fat: butter or duck fat
Salt and pepper
1/3 cup crème fraiche or heavy whipping cream if you don't have crème fraiche
1/2 cup dry white wine
250g curd cheese
Fresh parsley
- Peel the potatoes and cut them into slices.
- Roughly chop the onion.
- Heat the duck fat in a heavy skillet and add the onions, bacon and sauté gently for 3-5 minutes.
- Add the potatoes and continue to sauté for 5 more minutes.
- Add the wine, give the potatoes a stir, cover, season with salt and pepper as desired, and let simmer and steam in the wine for 10 minutes more.
- Grease the gratin pan with duck fat, crush the garlic clove, and rub the garlic clove all over the inner surface of the pan.
- Reserve the remaining garlic for another use (the vinaigrette for the accompanying salad, for example).
- Add the crème fraiche to the potato onion bacon mixture, and transfer it to the gratin pan
- sprinkle the cheese on top and place in a very hot oven and bake for 10 minutes at 250C
- Turn the heat down to 200C and bake 10 more minutes
- Turn off the oven, and leave the dish in the oven without opening it for another 10 minutes.
- Serve hot with a salad, crusty bread, and the wine you cooked with.

Serves 10- 14
350g digestive biscuits
120g unsalted butter, melted
Plus extra for greasing
300g light or low fat cream cheese
600g fresh curds
150g caster sugar
5 large eggs, preferably free range or organic
Juice of 6 limes (approx 125 ml)
Finely grated zest of 1 lime

For the meringue topping
3 large egg whites, preferably free range or organic (use the yolks in mayo, or scrambled eggs)
110g caster sugar
40g desiccated coconut

Preheat the oven to 160`C and grease a 24cm loose-bottomed cake tin. Put your biscuits into a food processor and whiz until you’ve got really fine crumbs, then mix in your melted butter. Spread the biscuits around the base of your greased tin, making sure you get right to the edges, then press it with your hands to pack it down. Place the tin on a baking sheet and pop it into the fridge while you make the filling.
Whiz the cream cheese and curd in a food processor until smooth, then gradually add the sugar. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each one. Pour in the lime juice and whiz again until just combined. Don’t worry if the mixture looks to thin it is suppose to be like that! Tip it over your chilled base, spread it out evenly, and bake it the oven for around 45 to 55 minutes - you want the cheesecake to still have a slight loose wobble. Remove from the oven and set aside for 15 minutes to cool slightly. Turn the oven up 220`C.
To make the meringue topping, put your egg whites into a clean bowl and beat until they form soft peaks - an electric whisk it quite handy here. Gradually add the caster sugar and beat until thick and glossy. Finally, fold in the coconut. Spoon this meringue mixture on the middle of the cooled cheesecake and spread it to the edges, using the back of a spoon, so it just covers the filling. It should be about 2cm thick. I like to make a few ripples and peaks in the top so it looks impressive. Bake in the oven for 5 minutes, or until the meringue is starting to turn golden in colour and is crisp to touch.
Let it cool down, then place in the fridge, for a good few hours (very important) to chill before serving. Carefully remove it from the tin, transfer it to a nice platter and sprinkle over lime or lemon zest. Yummy!

Alison and the Otago Farmers Market would like to thank the following producers for supporting the Mobile Kitchen and supplying us all with magnificent produce!

Manuka Smoked Eggs
Evansdale Cheese
Levito Bakery
Speckled Hen

You can visit me (Alison) on my ever changing Blog.