Episode 9 Rachel Allen: Home Cooking


Episode 9

Rachel shows how to make gorgeously sweet and sticky nougat. She also meets Michelin-starred chef Anthony Demetre to find out what's on his French-influenced home menu.


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Transcript


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You can't beat home-cooked food.

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In this series, I'm going to make every meal you cook at home a real treat.

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Today, on Home Cooking, I'll show you how to make

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gorgeously sweet and sticky nougat, a perfect homemade gift.

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I meet Michelin-star chef, Anthony Demetre, to find out what's on

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his French-influenced home menu.

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And I teach my cookery school family how to make dishes

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that are very popular in my house...

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salmon fish fingers and crispy chicken goujons.

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Nougat is a really gorgeous gift to make for someone and I'm going to

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make nougat, today, with pistachio nuts.

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It's a very simple recipe to make but you do have to be quite precise and it definitely helps, in fact,

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it's practically essential to have a sugar thermometer.

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You need a few simple ingredients.

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Sugar, powdered glucose, water, egg whites and nuts.

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First of all, I'm going to put the sugar into a saucepan...

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with...

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powdered glucose.

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It's usually half the amount of powdered glucose to sugar.

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And water.

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Put it on the heat. And just stir it,

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just until it comes up to the boil.

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Once it comes up to the boil, you stop stirring.

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Just when you're waiting for it to come up to the boil, crack two egg whites into a food mixer.

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And two.

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The syrup has just come up to the boil now so stop stirring.

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Take out the spatula or the spoon and allow it to boil for another

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few seconds until it reaches 110 degrees Celsius.

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Once the syrup has bubbled and boiled and is up to 110 degrees

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turn on the food mixer to whisk up the two egg whites.

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Continue whisking it until the syrup reaches 121 degrees.

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At that point, I'm going to pour a quarter of the syrup onto the stiffly beaten egg whites.

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Then, pop the syrup back on the high heat and it's going to boil up

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for about another five minutes until it reaches 149 degrees Celsius.

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Looks meringue-like.

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It looks really white, fluffy, marshmallowey.

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You need to be very precise about the temperature of the syrup

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when you're making nougat or you don't get the correct setting point.

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It'll be either too soft or too chewy or too hard.

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Now, the syrup is at 149 degrees Celsius, so turn off the heat and pour the remaining syrup

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onto the egg whites and the first little bits of syrup.

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Whisking it at full speed, just pouring in at a steady stream.

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I need to whisk this now for another 30 minutes, by which point,

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the mixture will be stiff, like a stiff meringue and will have decreased in volume.

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Right. I'll leave that to continue whisking and I can chop and toast the pistachio nuts.

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You can also use hazelnuts, you can use almonds, you can use a mixture.

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Nougat keeps incredibly well once you've made it.

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It'll keep for a few weeks if kept in a cool, dry place.

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Now that they're roughly chopped...

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pop them all into a dry frying pan.

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And toast them. I'm just going to cook them until they're a couple of shades darker.

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Just lightly toasted. Just a couple of minutes.

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Just toss them every so often.

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Just turn off the mixer.

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Just do this a couple of times while it's whisking. And scrape

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down the sides with a palette knife, or a spoon, or a spatula, that you dipped into boiling water...

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so it doesn't all get whisked up the sides of the bowl and cool down.

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Turn this on again. Check the nuts.

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The pistachio nuts are toasted, so you take them out of the pan...

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and just set them aside until the mixture is ready.

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30 minutes later, it's ready and has gone right down in volume.

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Stir the pistachios in, using quite a heavy...

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I find a kind of metal spoon best for this cos it's quite a thick mixture.

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So then get your tray that you're going to set the nougat in.

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You need edible rice paper.

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You need to cover the base of the tray with small sheets of this

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or if you can get larger sheets of rice paper...fantastic.

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That will actually cover the base.

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It's quite a good idea to take tiny blobs of the mixture on the paper

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and then turn the paper around so the paper will stick to the tray.

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Not too much, just enough to help it stick.

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Now, tip the mixture out.

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It's quite stiff.

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Yum. This looks amazing.

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And then, flatten it out in the tray.

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So dip your spoon into the jug of hot water and press it out...

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like this. OK.

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And then take the top sheet of rice paper...

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pressing it at this stage with your fingers so that it sticks to the nougat, all over. That's it.

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It's made. Now it needs to cool down before putting it into the fridge for about four to six hours...

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by which point, it will be completely set and you can cut it

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into little squares or little rectangles.

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Look at that gorgeous square of nougat.

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Yum!

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So there is my pistachio nougat. The perfect gift.

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Today's cookery school students are the Kohler family, from Cambridge.

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They love to cook as a family, so I'm showing them recipes

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that even the kids' fussiest friends will approve of.

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We're going to make delicious, kind of posh fish fingers.

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Little salmon fish fingers.

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Also, we're going to make little chicken goujons.

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So they're both lovely and kind of crispy on the outside.

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Breadcrumb coating on the fish fingers and the chicken goujons

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we'll cook in the deep fryer. They'll be lovely and crisp and yum!

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We're also going to make some homemade mayonnaise to go with both of these. It's easy.

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I find the most difficult thing, cooking for the family is trying to please everybody...

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which means if you're wanting to eat healthily and wanting to eat imaginatively,

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you need to have lots of ideas of things to cook and I think that's where we struggle,

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because we often end up eating the same thing over and over again.

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First of all, we're going to make the mayonnaise.

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And we have all got two eggs here.

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-You see there, Molly.

-That's good.

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-We've just got some chickens at home so we're getting lots of eggs.

-Brilliant.

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-So this'll be really good.

-How many chickens do you have?

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Six, altogether.

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So you'll be making quite a bit of mayonnaise.

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So what we can all do is break the egg white into the bowl, here.

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And the yolk in here.

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And for every two egg yolks, we need a generous half teaspoon of Dijon mustard.

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And we also need a dessertspoon of white wine vinegar, or lemon juice.

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And, George, do you want to pop a nice generous pinch of salt into the egg yolks.

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Now, we all have seven fluid ounces of sunflower oil and one fluid ounce, a little bit of olive oil.

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So it'll give a subtle olive oily flavour.

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Turn on your mixer, first of all.

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We're going to whisk all the time, while adding the oil very gradually in a very thin stream.

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It's going to look creamy and that means it's emulsifying.

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If you add the oil too quickly, it's not going to emulsify and it'll split. Slowly.

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Lovely over there, Alison.

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We'd like to learn some new recipes which we can create in the evening,

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quite quickly, which all the children can be involved in.

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See what you think. See if it needs a bit more mustard, a bit more salt.

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-It's quite nice, isn't it?

-That's delicious.

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And this mayonnaise will keep for a week, ten days, easily, when it's covered in the fridge.

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-I think it'll be gone in a day.

-Perfect.

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There's a fridge down here at the end of the counter,

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if you could pop your bowls in.

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Next thing we need to do is cut the salmon up into pieces

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and then we're going to toss it in flour seasoned with salt and pepper.

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And then in beaten egg and then in breadcrumbs.

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So I have here, just as added extra flavours, some finely-grated parmesan cheese...

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a little bit of cayenne pepper or even paprika,

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some crushed cumin and coriander seeds.

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Finely grated lemon zest and parsley.

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-Which one do you want, Molly? That one.

-The cheese.

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Throw yours into the breadcrumbs.

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-Is there any basil?

-There is some basil.

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You see the plant over there, the plant on the left...

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if you want to pick off, say about...

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-eight, or so, leaves.

-OK.

-Great. OK.

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You could tear it and put it into the breadcrumbs or put the basil leaves

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on top of each other and slice them like that.

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-Do you want to carry on?

-Yeah.

-Excellent.

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Like an expert.

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Brilliant. Toss the basil into the breadcrumbs...there.

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So what we'll do first of all with the salmon is cut it in slices,

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lengthways, first of all.

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And then...like that.

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-Yeah.

-Yeah. These are going to be our little fish fingers.

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Would you take the chicken, pop it on the board and slice it?

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If you want them quite crisp, then make them a little bit smaller, thinner.

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Now, we're going to coat the fish fingers

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in the flour, the egg and then our flavoured breadcrumbs.

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And cook the chicken goujons once the fish has gone into the oven.

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So, best thing to do first of all is just to toss them...like this...

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in the flour and then you shake off excess flour.

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And what I'm going to do is, actually, cos you get quite messy hands doing this,

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do the egg stage in one go.

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Then shake off the excess and allow the excess egg to drip off.

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-Yours are looking good, George.

-They are.

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-Ours are going to look better, though.

-You reckon?

-Yeah.

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-It's making me really hungry.

-Is it?

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We've got a hot oven, 220 degrees.

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So we're going to pop them in to the oven and these will take about, you know, eight to ten minutes to cook.

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Later on, we'll see how the Kohlers' fish fingers turn out and cook

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the chicken goujons to golden perfection.

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Coming up, chef, Anthony Demetre, invites me to share his

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favourite family dish - rabbit.

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And the Kohler family will be putting the finishing touches

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to their fun family lunch.

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Anthony Demetre began his career as a humble apprentice for the legendary chef, Raymond Blanc.

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Now, Arbutus in Soho, is one of two Michelin-starred restaurants, owned and run by Anthony.

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-Oui, chef.

-He is passionate about using lesser cuts of meat

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in innovative ways to create unpretentious and affordable dishes.

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-Service, please.

-It's an ethos he takes home.

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I popped round to see how he feeds his family and makes the most of his ingredients. Hello.

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-This is Max. This is Otis.

-Hi, Otis.

-And Frederike.

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-Hi, Frederike.

-Hello, there.

-How are you?

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-Shall we go in and cook?

-Thank you.

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So, Anthony, what are we going to be cooking today?

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We're doing a rabbit stew.

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-Rabbit in mustard sauce.

-Yum. Quite an unusual family favourite, though.

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It is but it's not dissimilar to chicken.

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It's one of those dishes where it's all hands dive in and it's really simple.

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-Great. A meal in the pot.

-Yeah.

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-Convivial and what family lunches should be about.

-Yeah.

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So here we are. As you can see, it's beautiful.

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We use everything.

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-So, Max likes rabbit?

-Yeah. And he's not phased by it.

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During our holidays to France, the Auvergne, it's littered with rabbits for the pot...

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you know, and he knows that.

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-He knows, inevitably, they'll be eaten.

-Yes.

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So, we take the legs... take the shoulders.

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And it's really plump, full of meat.

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And then chop that into another segment. And the legs.

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The reason I've gone through is because I want to catch that marrow.

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-Lovely. More flavour.

-Exactly. It goes into a casserole pan that'll hold the heat.

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And the offal will go in afterwards.

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So, Anthony, what kind of food did you eat growing up?

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My mother's got a bit of Irish blood, so we had lots of Irish stews and colcannon.

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-Oh, really?

-My most vivid memories were with my grandparents who were Greek Cypriots,

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but I was riveted to the table at a very early age and intrigued by my grandmother's cooking and I think

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-that's where my love affair with cooking was born, really. I'm going to go to check on the meat.

-OK.

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I think it's almost there, actually.

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-Do you get to cook much at home?

-I cook at weekends.

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If I do something like a rabbit, obviously we'll cook a whole rabbit

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but we won't eat it all in one go, so there'll be some left for Monday.

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-Yeah.

-And I'll sort of roll things for the week.

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I want to take the rabbit out.

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It smells delicious, doesn't it?

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-Oh, it's wonderful.

-Yeah.

-The next stage is to make the sauce.

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That excess oil we've got there, we don't really want all of that.

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So you can see all the sediment which is on the bottom there, that's all the flavour.

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We want to keep that.

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Just a splash of vinegar.

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It's lifting all the sediment off the base of the pan and it's got a beautiful colour.

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Because it's a mustard sauce, we want a good couple of spoons in there.

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-Rachel.

-Yes.

-Could you peel me two cloves of garlic?

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OK. The water's going in.

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About a pint of water, 500ml, there.

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And I'll pop the rabbit back in.

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And finally, the cream, I'm going for about 200ml, there.

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-Here's the garlic.

-Yeah. Pop that in.

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-OK.

-Lovely.

-That looks amazing.

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Lovely. Lovely. Lovely. We'll pop into the garden and get our herbs.

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-This is lovely, actually.

-This is a small little London garden

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but it's somewhere where I grow all my own herbs.

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So we're going to take a bit of thyme.

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Now, this is a herb I really love.

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-I love savory, too.

-Yes.

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And it's so, so underused.

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And it's almost like...

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really citrusy, like a lemon thyme...

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-It is.

-Without the sweetness.

-Gorgeous.

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We're just going to take one bay leaf.

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That's it. One bay leaf.

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Are you going to take that for daddy?

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I'm just going to pop those in.

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OK. Lid on. And the next stage.

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While the potatoes are warm, they will absorb all that really fruity olive oil.

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I love French olive oil for this because it hasn't got that fieriness of Greek olive oil.

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It's kind of mild and a great introduction for children, as well. Lovely. Lovely.

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We're fighting here over who's crushing the potato.

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-Shall I season?

-Yeah. Go for it.

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OK. The next stage is for me to cook the peas and the broad beans. And that's it. That'll be done.

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So sweat the onions, garlic and add in the blanched peas and the blanched broad beans.

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Lots of yummy food. Oh, it smells good, doesn't it?

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Wow. Delicious. Absolutely delicious.

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That's delicious.

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That's really tender.

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Really tender and lovely.

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Frederike, did you grow up eating a lot of rabbit?

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We do tend to eat rabbit quite a lot in France, especially in

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-the Auvergne area, where my grandparents are from.

-OK.

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-And yes, I think it was about once a week.

-Really?

-Yes.

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Do you find yourself cooking for the children the kind of food you ate growing up?

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Yes. My mother is not a great cook but her mum is a fantastic cook,

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so yes, I did watch and learn from her quite a bit.

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Anthony, Frederike's grandmother...

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has she had a bit of an influence on your cooking?

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A major inspiration. By the produce, the way they live off the land.

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For me, it's paradise.

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-Really?

-Yeah, because it's not ostentatious.

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It's real people with real food and just everyday life. It's just fabulous.

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Thank you so much, Frederike and Anthony.

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This is absolutely delicious.

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-It's a pleasure.

-Thank you.

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It's good to cook for you.

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Now, it's back to cookery school and time for the Kohler family

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to decide which flavours to add to their chicken goujon coating.

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While the salmon is cooking, we can cook chicken goujons.

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Basically, the chicken coating is just milk and flour.

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We dip each separate goujon in milk and then in flour.

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Why don't you use the egg here, then?

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It's a different coating. We'll get a different...

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-You could use flour, egg and cream.

-Right.

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-To give you breaded chicken goujons.

-Right.

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But we're going for a different coating for a change.

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We like the children to try different foods.

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We went to France a few years ago

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and Isabelle was apprehensive about eating mussels, but she tried one and loved it.

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Now we can't stop her. Mussels with everything.

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Now, we've got a few other things here.

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We've got some curry powder.

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We have some toasted sesame seeds.

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And we've got some paprika.

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Alison, Issy, would you like to use one of these?

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Which one would you like to use, Issy?

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-Sesame seeds.

-Sesame seeds. Yeah. Good choice cos they'll make it crunchy.

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-George, would you like to use either of these?

-The curry powder.

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Curry powder. OK. Great. And that'll just give it

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a subtle flavour.

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With these flavours, could you use honey as one?

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Yeah. You could use honey. What could you do?

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Would you drizzle some honey over the chicken first?

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Yeah, or you could put it in the milk.

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Yeah. You could do that on your cooking programme.

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I could. Yeah.

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Once we dip these, the chicken goujons in milk and then flour,

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they need to go straight in the deep fryer and are best eaten straightaway.

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Once they go into the oil, then I can drop a few more in.

0:19:120:19:15

-How hot does the oil have to be?

-It's about 170, 180.

0:19:150:19:20

Basically, the bigger they are, the lower the oil.

0:19:200:19:24

So if they're tiny, thin, little goujons, put the oil up to 180 or 190 degrees.

0:19:240:19:29

They don't take long, do they?

0:19:290:19:31

No. They'll take about four minutes, maybe.

0:19:310:19:34

Once ours are cooked, we'll pop them on kitchen paper,

0:19:340:19:37

allow them to drain and put yours straight in.

0:19:370:19:40

I like to eat a lot of things, mostly everything.

0:19:400:19:42

Pastas and pizzas and Italian food, as well.

0:19:420:19:46

But I like to make sure I'm eating healthy food, as well,

0:19:460:19:49

cos I'm conscious of how I look and things like that.

0:19:490:19:52

-Our chicken is cooked, George.

-Nice.

0:19:520:19:54

It's great, isn't it?

0:19:540:19:56

Lovely. Nice and golden brown.

0:19:560:19:59

It's really important you don't flour them too far in advance because otherwise the chicken goes

0:19:590:20:05

-kind of stodgy so just flour them like this and pop them in.

-Yeah.

0:20:050:20:09

The cost of food is really important.

0:20:090:20:11

I'm training to be a teacher, so it's really important for us

0:20:110:20:15

to eat healthily but to cook on a budget.

0:20:150:20:18

The chicken is now cooked and you can take one of the bigger pieces out, cut it in half,

0:20:180:20:23

just to make sure it's cooked all the way through.

0:20:230:20:26

-George, would you bring this round.

-Yeah.

0:20:260:20:28

And we can serve up the chicken. And Neil, if you take

0:20:280:20:31

your fish fingers out. They're cooked. Nice and golden brown.

0:20:310:20:34

Alison and Issy, would you mind taking the sauces out of the fridge.

0:20:340:20:38

And we're ready to start serving everything up.

0:20:380:20:42

We'll put ours on this side.

0:20:420:20:45

They look really nice and crispy.

0:20:450:20:47

-Ours are crispy too, though, aren't they?

-They are.

0:20:470:20:50

Are we getting hungry?

0:20:500:20:52

-Very.

-Very hungry.

-Fantastic.

0:20:520:20:55

OK. Shall we bring them outside?

0:20:550:20:56

-Oh, yes.

-And have a little taste.

0:20:560:20:59

Issy can't wait.

0:21:050:21:07

-This is the best food, ever.

-Good, Issy.

0:21:140:21:19

You like that, don't you?

0:21:190:21:21

George, do you think these are something that you would make if you were having friends over?

0:21:210:21:26

-Yeah. These would be quite good cos they're quick and easy.

-Yeah.

0:21:260:21:30

And apart from being fried, they're quite healthy.

0:21:300:21:33

-They are reasonably healthy. Yeah.

-You've got your salad, as well.

0:21:330:21:38

-Actually, there's loads. It really does go a long way.

-Yeah. It does.

0:21:380:21:41

It's good because you can make this on quite a good budget.

0:21:410:21:45

I was surprised at how easy it was to make mayonnaise.

0:21:450:21:48

I always thought it was very complicated and it would curdle and separate immediately,

0:21:480:21:52

but actually, we did it very simply and it tasted delicious.

0:21:520:21:56

I think Rachel's inspired us with that recipe today.

0:21:560:21:59

It's such an easy thing to do.

0:21:590:22:00

It's so simple, it makes you wonder why we haven't thought of it.

0:22:000:22:04

Rachel prompting us is probably all we needed, so it's great.

0:22:040:22:08

That was great. You were brilliant. I hope you enjoyed it.

0:22:080:22:11

-It was excellent. Thank you very much.

-My pleasure.

0:22:110:22:14

Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

0:22:140:22:17

Rachel shows how to make gorgeously sweet and sticky nougat - a perfect home-made gift. She also meets Michelin-starred chef Anthony Demetre to find out what's on his French-influenced home menu, and teaches her cookery school family how to make dishes that are very popular in her house - salmon fish fingers and crispy chicken goujons.


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