You may have caught Cookery School on a weekday afternoon (2.05pm) on Channel Four. In case you haven't Cookery School is a daily cookery competition which aims to transform ordinary cooks into extraordinary ones. Each week the show follows six home cooks from around the country, each fighting it out to achieve culinary success and a place in the finals. They are tutored by Richard Corrigan, the talented Michelin-starred chef while cookery presenter and writer Gizzi Erskine (from Channel 4’s Cook Yourself Thin) joins in the mentoring and judging.
To accompany the programme is the eagerly awaited Cookery School book which includes all the recipes from the series, over 100 recipes and skills in total. Dormouse were lucky enough to receive a copy of this lovely book to try out. It is a learn to cook book for cooks of all levels with step-by-step photographs to teach the main techniques needed to master the dishes, in fact it's a bit like having Richard himself helping you out in your own kitchen. Cookery School is divided into four main easy to follow chapters starters, fish, meat, and puddings so there's something for every occasion.
The book also looks lovely, with every recipe is accompanied with mouthwateringly delicious colour images which makes you eager to have a go yourself. And... so we did, in honour of Shrove Tuesday tomorrow we made some gorgeous pancakes and here's the recipe so you can have a go yourself too ...
Dutch apple pancakes with cinnamon and clove sugar (makes 2)
For the apple pancakes
50g unsalted butter
1 Braeburn, Granny Smith or russet apple, peeled, cored and quartered, then each wedge cut into ½cm slices
2 tbsp Calvados
2 large eggs
120ml whole milk
90g plain flour, sifted
3 tbsp caster sugar
2 tbsp melted butter
2 heaped tbsp crème fraîche
For the cinnamon and clove sugar
100g caster sugar
2 tbsp ground cinnamon
½ level tsp ground cloves
- Put the butter in a medium-sized pancake pan or large shallow frying pan (one that you can flip) and place over a medium heat. Once the butter has melted, add the apple pieces and cook for 3–4 minutes until they begin to soften. Add the Calvados to the pan and carefully set it alight to flame the apples. Let the flames go out of their own accord and then transfer half the apple mixture to a bowl and set aside.
- Meanwhile, to make the batter, break the eggs into a large bowl. Add the milk, flour, sugar and melted butter. Whisk to combine.
- Ladle half the batter over the apple mixture in the pancake pan and cook until the bottom of the pancake has set. Then flip the pancake over, or use two fish slices to turn it, and cook for a further minute on the other side. Slide the cooked pancake out on to a plate and keep warm.
- Return the reserved half of the apple mixture to the pancake pan to warm through. Then pour in the remaining batter and cook the second pancake as before.
- To make the flavoured sugar, mix the caster sugar, cinnamon and cloves in a small bowl.
- Place each pancake on a serving plate, sprinkle with the cinnamon and clove sugar and serve with a dollop of crème fraîche and a little more sugar
We found the instructions really simple and clear and for the first time ever we actually managed to turn a pancake! The end result was greeted with lots of ooohs and ahhs and was greedily gobbled up in no time! Success and no one was any of the wiser that we had, had a bit of help from a friend... until now that is!
Recipe extracted from 'Cookery School', brought to you by Channel 4 with recipes by Richard Corrigan. Published on the 3rd March (Penguin HB, £20)
We were sent this book free of charge to review.