Apples, mutton, scallops

09 November 2006
Apples, mutton, scallops

Fresh produce

English apples are still in good supply and quality - Bramleys, Coxes, Worcesters and Russet varieties included - but apart from winter cauliflowers from Cornwall, the market is mostly moving away from England to sunnier climates.

Leafy clementines and courgettes are coming in from Spain, and pomegranates from Eygpt. Spinach will see a slight price rise as the market moves from north to south France, and French salads will also be on the dearer side after the recent frosts. Globe artichokes and strawberries are both worth avoiding as well after a dearth of good quality arrivals.

Source: Fresh Direct 01869 365600


Good quality mutton is available everywhere, and venison supplies are also very strong. Game is generally in good supply, partridge, pheasant and duck included, with superior woodcock game soon to enter the market as well.

There's plenty of good quality pork available at very reasonable prices, and beef prices have also stabilised as a result of the selection of game currently on offer to chefs. Saltmarsh lamb and whole veal calves are both still available.

Source: Chef Direct 01275 474707


The week has seen no improvement from Scotland, where gales still mean good landings are few and far between. There have been no arrivals of Orkney scallops, and langoustine numbers have also been very small.

Elsewhere, there have been good landings of line-caught bass and squid prices are continuing to drop. Cheaper fish such as hake and pollack are in plentiful supply, as are all mussels, cockles, plaice, cod and English codling.

Source: Chef Direct 01275 474707

Seasonal recipe

Caramelised apple brochette with cinnamon churros


(Serves four)

250ml milk
90g sugar
Pinch of salt
Seeds scraped from the inside of a vanilla pod
100g soft butter
200g plain flour
3 eggs
Oil for deep-frying
Cinnamon mixed with caster sugar
4 British Cox Apples and 4 bamboo skewers
Knob of fresh butter
30ml Calvados


Put the milk, 10g sugar, salt, vanilla seeds and 100g butter in a pan. Heat until the butter melts and the milk comes to simmering point. Beat in the flour, and when no lumps remain, stir the mixture over a low heat with a wooden spoon for one minute.

Remove from the heat and beat in the eggs one at a time. Spoon the mixture into a piping bag fitted with a rose nozzle and pipe long curls on non-stick paper.

Heat oil for deep-frying to 180°C and fry the churros until golden brown. Drain on kitchen paper and toss in caster sugar flavoured with a little ground cinnamon.

Peel and cube the apples and thread them on brochettes. Melt butter and the rest of the sugar in a pan, then add the apple brochette and cook it slowly at first, then turning up the heat until the apple is soft and caramelised. Flame with Calvados.

Serve churros with the apple brochette brushed with the caramelised syrup from the apple and Calvados. Accompany with apple sorbet, apple jelly and apple compote.

Pascal Proyart, executive chef, One-O-One, Sheraton Park Tower, London

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