Pear and Ginger Scones


Makes about 17 depending on the size

  • 16 oz plain flour
  • 2 tbsp superfine sugar, plus extra to decorate
  • 2 heaped tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3½ oz butter, at room temperature, diced
  • 2 small pears, peeled and diced
  • 1 tbsp crystallized ginger, chopped
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • 9½ fl oz milk
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • Flaked almonds, to decorate

Preheat the oven to 220°C/fan 200°C/420°F/ fan390°F /gas 6.
Sift all the dry ingredients into a bowl (or aerate by lifting and dropping the ingredients). Using your fingertips, rub in the butter until the mixture resembled fine breadcrumbs. Then add the pears, chopped and ground ginger.
Make a well in the centre and pour in most of the milk, mix with one hand to form a soft dough, add all the milk if required.
Turn out onto a floured surface and knead lightly, roll out until it about 1 inch high.Using a round scone cutter, cut the dough into circles. Gently reshape the leftover dough and cut out more scones.
Dip the top of the scones in the beaten egg and then sprinkle with flaked almonds. Place onto a lined baking tray.
Bake for about 15 to 18 minutes depending on the size until risen and golden on top.

Catherine & Siucra's Sunday Savoury Family Meal

Greek Style Butterflied Leg of Lamb with Chimichurri


Serves 6 to 8
For the butterflied lamb

  • 2 tsp chopped fresh oregano
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp Siucra rich brown sugar
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 lemons, juice only
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1.5kg leg of lamb, deboned and butterflied

For the Chimichurri

  • 30g parsley sprigs, keep the stalks on
  • 20g coriander sprigs, keep the stalks on
  • 4 medium sprigs oregano
  • 4 small sprigs mint
  • 60ml extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • 1½ tbsp Siucra caster sugar
  • 4 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Roasted garlic bulb halves, to garnish
  • Sprigs of mint, to garnish
  • Roasted red peppers and courgettes, to serve

To prepare the marinade for the lamb, mix the oregano, garlic, Siucra rich brown sugar, olive oil, lemon juice and freshly ground black pepper in a small bowl.
Place the butterflied lamb into a shallow dish and pour over the marinade, rub this into the lamb, cover and allow to marinade in the fridge for at least 3 hours. Remove from the fridge and bring the lamb to room temperature (allow 30 minutes). Pat the lamb dry and brown both sides in a hot frying pan over the hob.

To roast, meantime, preheat the oven to 220°C/fan 200°C. Place the lamb into the roasting pan, season with freshly ground pepper and a little salt, roast for about 15 minutes before turning the heat down to 190°C/fan 170°C and roast for a further 50 minutes or until your meat thermometer reaches 72°C for medium (or until it reaches your preference of “doneness”). If you like it well done, roast for a further 10 to 15 minutes. Keep basting the lamb from time to time.

While the lamb is roasting, prepare the chimichurri: place all the ingredients into a blender and pulse a few time and then using a spatula, push the ingredients down the side of the blender. Do short pulses about 7 to 8 times until you have a textured sauce. Taste, you may need to add a little more oil, salt, freshly ground black pepper or sugar. Allow the lamb to “rest”, covered, for 15 minutes, then place on a platter of roasted red peppers and courgettes. Spoon over the chimicchurri and serve.

Catherine & Siúcra's Carrot & Orange Bunny Tail Cupcakes

Carrot and Orange Bunny Tail Cupcakes


Makes 12 medium cupcakes

 For the cupcakes

  • 120g caster sugar
  • 100g unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch nutmeg
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 70g grated carrots
  • 1 medium orange, zest and juice
  • 170g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 60ml milk

For the butter cream:

  • 180g butter, softened
  • 350g icing sugar, sieved
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Green colour paste

For the bunny tails

  • Siucra roll out icing
  • Pink colour paste
  • Edible glue
  • Disposable piping bag and a multi hole nozzle for piping the grass

Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan160°C/Gas 4. Line a muffin tray with medium size cupcake cases.

To make the cupcakes
Place the caster, butter, cinnamon and nutmeg into a mixer and whisk for to 3 to 4 minutes until pale and fluffy.
Pour in the beaten eggs and whisk until just mixed. Add the grated carrots, orange zest and juice.
Fold in the flour and baking powder. Pour in most of the milk until a soft batter forms.
Using 2 spoons, neatly scoop the mixture into the cases and bake for about 15 to 18 minutes. They should be risen, golden brown and when a skewer is inserted into the middle it should come out clean. Allow to cool completely before decorating. The cupcakes should be level.

To make the buttercream
Cream the butter, icing sugar and vanilla in a mixer. Add enough green colour for the grass.

To pipe
Spoon the buttercream into the piping bag fitted with a grass tip nozzle. Pipe the grass over the top of the cupcakes.

To make the bunny tails
Roll a piece of the Siucra roll out icing the size of a €2 coin into a ball and flatten one side – this is for the body and place it in the grass. Roll out a much smaller piece of Siucra roll out icing for the tail. Secure it on with a little edible glue.

Make two bunny feet
Small oval shapes. Colour a piece of Siucra roll out icing pink for the pads of the feet and make one a little larger than the other 3. Place them in position using edible glue. Now secure the feet into position as well. Repeat for all the other cupcakes.


Catherine & Siúcra's Savoury Easter Breakfast/Brunch

Savoury Easter Breakfast /Brunch 

Asparagus Brie Tart

Serves 4
For the pastry

  • 250g plain flour
  • 3 tbsp fine polenta
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tsp Siucra caster sugar
  • 120g chilled butter, diced
  • ½ lemon, zest only
  • 1 egg
  • Chilled water, to bind

For the topping

  • 120g ricotta
  • 1 tbsp mixed chopped herbs, parsley with some thyme and a little rosemary
  • ½ lemon, zest only
  • 300g fresh asparagus, trimmed
  • 200g brie, sliced
  • 2 tbsp Siucra icing sugar
  • 1 tbsp sesame seed
  • Egg wash, to glaze
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Sprig of dill or fennel, to garnish
  • Lemon zest, to garnish

To make the pastry
Place the plain flour, polenta, salt and Siucra caster sugar into your food processor.
Add the diced butter and lemon zest and pulse until the texture of breadcrumbs.
Add in the egg and enough cold water to form a stiff dough.
Wrap in parchment and rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/gas 6.

To assemble
Roll the pastry out into a 25cm x 15cm rectangle on the parchment. Trim the edges and slide onto a baking tray.  
Mix the ricotta, herbs, lemon zest together and spread over the pastry, leaving a 1cm around the edge.
Trim the asparagus to the size of the pastry and place on top of the ricotta spread. Arrange the brie slices on top and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Using a pastry brush, glaze the edge of the tart with egg wash and sprinkle over some sesame seeds.  
Dust lightly with the Siucra icing sugar and bake for about 22 to 25 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4 after 15 minutes of baking. The tart should be golden on the edges.
Garnish with dill or fennel sprigs and lemon zest to serve.

Catherine & Siúcra's Shamrock Cake

Shamrock St Patrick’s Day Cake

Serves 10 to 12
For the lemon lime curd

  • 2 limes, juice and zest
  • 2 lemons, juice only
  • 180g Siucra caster sugar
  • 120g butter
  • 4 egg yolks

For the cake

  • 180g Siucra caster sugar
  • 180g unsalted butter, softened
  • 7 large eggs
  • 380g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 100ml milk

For the butter cream:

  • 250g butter, softened
  • 550g Siucra icing sugar
  • 2 limes, juice only
  • Green food colouring
  • Black food colouring
  • Siucra roll out icing, to make shamrock cut outs and a leprechaun hat
  • Cut a 15cm heart shaped template from baking paper
  • A large cake board or wooden board
  • A piece of green or white ribbon for around the board (optional)

To make the curd, place all the ingredients into a saucepan over a low heat and stir most of the time until a thick curd forms. Remove and leave to cool completely.

For the cake, preheat the oven to 180°C/Fan160°C/gas 4. Brush 3 x 18cm cake tins with melted butter and dust with flour.
Cream the Siucra caster sugar and butter until light and fluffy.
Whisk in the beaten eggs one at a time.
Fold in the flour and baking powder. Add the milk and mix well.
Spoon the mixture into the 3 cake tins and bake for about 20 to 22 minutes or until golden and when a skewer is inserted into the middle it comes out clean. Allow to cool completely.

To make the butter cream, place the butter, Siucra icing sugar and lime juice together and whisk until smooth, light and fluffy. Retain 5 generous tablespoonfuls of buttercream for sandwiching together. To make a pale green mix, add green colouring to the rest and whisk again until you’ve reached the colour you want. Remove about 4 tablespoonfuls and add another drop of the green food colouring and mix again. Retain this for piping rosettes later.

To assemble, place the heart shape template onto a cake and cut the shape. Slice the cake in half and repeat for the two remaining cakes.
Spread some curd on one cake half and divide the 5 tablespoonfuls over the other halves and sandwich them together.
Place the points of the hearts facing inwards in the shape of a shamrock (you may need to trim them a little so they fit together.) Use a trimmed piece of cake as the shamrock stem. Spread the pale green butter cream over the top and sides of the cake.

Colour a piece of Siucra roll out - one green and a small piece, black. Using the green roll out, cut out small shamrocks and cut out or shape a leprechaun’s hat and trim with black rollout icing, place on the sides and top of the cake.Spoon the darker green buttercream into a piping bag with a nozzle and pipe around the cake.
Secure a piece of ribbon around the board if you are using this.

Fine foodCatherine FilvioGood living


Ballyknocken House & Cookery School
Glenealy, Ashford,
Co Wicklow, A67 X720
Ireland. Tel: +353 (0)404 44627
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