July’s kitchen – it has to be strawberries!

We’ve had a great few days at the Great Yorkshire Show this week and on Wednesday Martin and I gave a quick ‘Gardening on the Menu’ talk and demo. Martin gave loads of tips on growing new potatoes, broad beans and strawberries and I did a couple of really quick cook recipes with the produce.

I promised the audience that the strawberry recipe would be on our website this week so here it is!

The ‘Minty broad bean and crispy bacon’ recipe is in our book – Gardening on the Menu’. If you wanted to buy one then they are available here on our website.

Crunchy strawberry and toffee tart

Serves 6 Takes about 15 minutes plus 30 minutes cooling time

175g  (11 ½) Hobnobs (or any crunchy biscuit)

85g unsalted  butter

425g strawberries

150ml carton of double cream

250g tub mascarpone

1 tablespoon icing sugar plus a little more for dusting

80g soft toffees (Werther’s chewy toffees are perfect)

3 tablespoons milk

50g shelled hazlenuts, toasted and chopped (optional)

  • Line a 20-23cm loose bottomed flan case with baking parchment and put to one side.
  • Break the biscuits into pieces and put them into a strong freezer bag. Use a rolling pin to crush them into crumbs. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan then take off the heat and add the biscuit crumbs. Stir really well until they have all absorbed some of the butter.
  • Pile into the flan case then use the back of a spoon or the back of your hand to spread them evenly over the bottom. Press down until firm. Pop in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
  • Spread base
  • Very carefully remove the biscuit base from the flan case and invert on a flat serving plate. Peel off the paper. If you’re not sure you want to risk it then leave the the case on its base and remember it’s there when you serve the pud!
  • Put the milk in a small bowl along with the toffees. Use the microwave to melt the toffee slowly over about 3-4 minutes. Zap on medium for 30 seconds then stir well. Continue to do this until the toffees have melted completely and have blended with the milk. It’s important to stir well each time. Put to one side to cool stirring now and again. You could do this the old fashioned way by putting the toffees in a small bowl then heating it over a pan of hot water – stir all the time till the toffees are melted.
  • Take about a third of the strawberries and chop into small pieces. Slice or quarter the rest of the strawberries.
  • Beat the cream until it just holds its shape. In a separate bowl beat the mascarpone with the icing sugar to loosen it. Fold the cream into the mascarpone then stir in the chopped strawberries.
  • Add to cream
  • Spoon the creamy topping over the biscuit base and spread out to the edges. Cover with the remaining strawberry slices and scatter over the toasted hazlenuts if using.
  • spread on base
  • Drizzle over the toffee sauce allowing it to fall onto the plate as well.
  • Serve a generous portion along with any leftover toffee sauce.
  • This pudding is best eaten straight away as the base will become a little soggy with time – it still tastes just as good though!
  • Finished4