Reaching the final of Masterchef 2007 was a rollercoaster of emotion, with huge highs and lows, but I loved every minute and learnt a huge amount. I owe a great deal to John and Gregg who had faith in my ability when I did not believe in myself. Since competing on the programme my life has changed considerably. I now write cookery columns for two magazines, give cookery demonstrations and am just working on my 13th cook book - unlucky number for some but not for me!!! I love all forms of country cooking, using seasonal and locally sourced produce. This blog is to enable me to share with you a few of my recipes and baking ideas. Enjoy Hannah xxxx

Monday, 9 July 2007

Well I have to confess that for the first time in a very long while I had a weekend off from catering and demos. My friend Tina from Law School came to stay for the weekend and we had a lovely time shopping, eating and relaxing.
On Friday I cooked a mint pavlova - 200grams egg whites (approx 6 or 7 eggs depending on how large they are), 400grams caster sugar and a tbsp of finely chopped mint - whisk the egg whites to stiff peak, continue whisking adding the caster sugar gradually until it is all incorporated - stir in the mint and spoon the meringue onto baking parchment in a circle. Bake in a cool oven for an hour, then turn the oven off and leave the pavlova in until the oven is cold. If you have an aga as I do this is slightly more difficult as you can't turn it off - I cook mine for an hour in the simmering oven and then remove it and place it on top of the simmering plate on a cake rack or the aga toaster and leave it overnight to continue cooking slowly - this gives a lovely "crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside" meringue. This was topped with double cream, sweetened with mint syrup and fresh raspberries and blueberries.

We spent yesterday at my mums having lunch and visiting Woburn (more shopping!). This little hedgehog (named Horace) has moved into my mum's garden. So cute!


Rita said...

Hannah, I am a big fan of pavlova's and of mint. What kind of mint did you use? Thanks so much. Rita

Hannah said...

Rita - I just used ordinary mint that I have growing in the garden - you could use any flavoured mint though - apple mint might be nice. I made a lavender pavolva last night - hoping that it will be nice too!

Erica said...

Ooooooh the hedgehog is sooo cute!!!

Rita said...

Thanks Hannah - I will give it a try! Blessings with all you do!

Anonymous said...

Hello Hannah, Alex Joynes here, I was just wondering if you have received my letter yet?

Thank you!

Marie said...

Mmm...the Pavolva sounds absolutely delish! That hedghog is such a cutie! Great pictures!

Hannah said...

Hi Alex
Yes I received your letter - the photographer from Country Kitchen brought it with him last week when he came for the photo shoot. Thank you so much for it. I had been planning on writing a letter back to you but haven't found the time to do it yet. I am so pleased that you enjoy cooking so much and hope that you will apply to go on Masterchef in a few years time! I will happily pass on lots of hints and tips!