Lockdown Larder – Day 53

Chicken Schnitzel, blueberry & lemon cake – and pancakes!

 

Sunday afternoon I felt like baking. I found some blueberries in the freezer, and had plenty of lemons, and so they called to be made into a cake. Bill Granger had a recipe I’d never tried: Blueberry Tea Cake. https://foodthatserves.com/tag/cream-cheese-icing/

I made one change to the recipe, to swap out sour cream for yoghurt. I’ve found these to be almost interchangeable in baking. Prior to using the blueberries, I ran them under cold water to shed any ice crystals.

This recipe used the grated zest of two lemons, which left me with 2 lemons needing to be used. It was time for an afternoon snack.

Son asked a week or so ago, if I’d show him how to make pancakes. The English style of pancakes, thin and crisp-edged like a crepe, but smaller, and served hot from the pan with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and a spoonful of sugar.

I *LOVE* pancakes, but find them a pain to cook, so I said yes, and we had a delicious afternoon snack. I used the classic Delia Smith recipe: https://www.deliaonline.com/recipes/main-ingredient/eggs-recipes/basic-pancakes

I’ve used this recipe for years and it’s bombproof.

The only problem was the size of the frying pan we used, in that it was bigger than the recipe suggested. Instead of making 12 – 14 pancakes, there was only enough batter for 6 and a half. The first one was a mess, but this is normal as the first one is used for conditioning the pan, and judging the temperature etc.

The rest were delicious, and if I can persuade him to make them again, I’ll be happy.

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Anyway, dinner was chicken schnitzel sandwiches. I make my own schnitzel now, having discovered how much better it is than the pieces you buy ready-made. It’s time consuming, though. I cut two fat chicken breasts into four pieces each, but they were still too thick, so I bashed them with a wooden rolling pin, between thick layers of clingfilm. This has the dual result of making them thin and quick to cook, and tenderising the meat. God, does it go tender.

Dunk the pieces in beaten egg, then in seasoned panko breadcrumbs (I flavoured with salt and lemon-pepper), and place on a tray lined with baking paper. I spray lightly with oil, and then bake at 200 degrees for around ten minutes, turning them over after five minutes, and spraying with a little more oil. When they’re done, I carefully lay slices of either swiss cheese or Brie on the chicken, and give them another minute in the oven, to get the cheese melting.

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I’d normally serve them in burger buns, but I didn’t have any, and so I used sliced bread instead. The flavours are really important and need to be layered. I spoon cranberry sauce on the bottom slice, and a combo of chilli jam and mayo on the top slice. Then I pile on shredded lettuce and wafer thin slices of tomato, then the chicken, and finally a rasher of crisp, streaky bacon.

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Each bite is bursting with flavour, and the chicken is soooo moist and tender. Really good.

The cake was good too. I made a simple lemon drizzle icing, rather than using cream cheese, and it will keep the cake moist for a couple of days, if we don’t eat it by then. The blueberries are bursting with flavour. Yumm!

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New Zealand is still under Lockdown restrictions. This blog intends to avoid the bad news about rising numbers of victims. It focuses instead on food, and the challenges of cooking fresh meals every day – with the ingredients from my larder. A much nicer message 😊

 

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