The Baker's Daughter: win a place at Waitrose Cookery School

The Baker's Daughter

For Louise Johncox, baking runs in the family. Her father was a master baker who ran tea shops, and it was only through baking with him after he retired that she was able to reconnect with her past and discover her incredible pastry chef heritage. 

Louise knows that baking can be about more than just food – it's also about memories. The recipes in her new book, The Baker's Daughter, are laden with the signs, smells and warmth of her family tea room and bakehouse. 

To celebrate the publication of this gorgeous book, we're offering £300 worth of gift certificates for Waitrose Cookery School - enough for two places on a cookery course of your choice.  

Treat yourself to a copy of Louise Johncox's book, The Baker's Daughter: Timeless Recipes from Four Generations of Bakers. Published by PanMacmillan, it's now available on Amazon and from all good bookshops (RRP £20).

 

How to enter

This competition is sponsored by
Pan Macmillan 

For a chance to win Waitrose Cookery School vouchers, just share one of your own treasured family food memories. Post a picture – it could be of the food itself, a battered, old family recipe, or the person it reminds you of - and a couple of sentences telling us about it, on this thread.

 

If you just can't wait to get baking, why not try a couple of Louise's teashop family favourites; Mini Macarons and Treacle Tart. 

MINI MACARONS (makes approximately 20) 

Ingredients 

• 175 icing sugar

• 150g ground almonds

• 3 large egg whites

• 25g caster sugar

• 2 drops food colouring
- the colour of your choice (you can add more drops to intensify the colour)  

For the fillings

• 110g icing sugar

• 110g butter

• An assortment of flavours - such as strawberry, lemon, pistachio - and colours of your choice
 

Mini Macarons

  1. Sift the icing sugar into a bowl, then stir in the ground almonds. Whisk the egg white until it is stiff using a handheld whisk. Add the caster sugar and continue to whisk until you have stiff peaks. Fold in the almond-and-icing sugar mixture. At this stage, the mixture can be divided and coloured using food colourings to match any flavourings you might be using for the fillings. Put the macaron mixture into a piping bag fitted with a 2.5cm plain nozzle.
  2. You can use a macaron mould to shape the mixture or draw circles that are approximately 2.5cm in diameter on a sheet of greaseproof paper, spacing them 2.5cm apart. Pipe the mixture onto the drawn circles or into the moulds on a large baking sheet. Tap the sheet on a table to level out the mixture. Set aside for 1 ½ hours, by which time a slight skin will have formed on the cakes.
  3. Preheat the oven to 160°C/gas mark 3. 
  4. Bake for 12-15 minutes, then switch off the oven and leave the oven door slightly ajar until the macarons are firm. If you piped the mixture onto greaseproof paper, leave the macarons to cool on the paper.
  5. Baker's tip: If you are colouring the mini macaron mixture in different colours, prepare a separate piping bag for each colour, which will make the piping easier. Alternatively, use whipped cream or flavoured buttercream in place of the icing filling, if you prefer.
  6. To make the filling, mix the icing sugar and butter together until light and fluffy.
  7. Divide the mixture into portions, depending on the number of flavours/colours you would like to make, then add the colours and flavourings of your choice, starting with 1-2 drops and adding more if you think it is necessary.
  8. Place the mixture in a piping bag fitted with a 1cm plain nozzle. Pipe the filling onto half of a macaron, then place the other half of the macaron on top and sandwich them together around the filling. 

 

TREACLE TART (serves 8)

IngredientsTreacle Tart

• 1 quantity of sweet shortcrust pastry

• 560ml golden syrup

• 175g sliced white bread or dry (1-day-old) scones, grated (you'll have approximately 90g breadcrumbs)

• 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

 

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4.
  2. Line a 20cm tart tin with the sweet shortcrust pastry. Place the tin in the refrigerator to allow the pastry to rest for 30 minutes.
  3. Baker's tip: Prepare the mixture for the filling the night before you intend to bake the tart, to allow the breadcrumbs to absorb the syrup and lemon juice. Occasionally, Peter added 50g crushed almonds and sultanas to the mixture.
  4. Warm the golden syrup in a bowl and set over a pan of simmering water in order to make it thin enough to pour freely. Gradually stir the syrup into the breadcrumbs to make a thick and consistent mixture. Blend the lemon juice into the filling.
  5. Spoon the filling into the pastry case to a depth of 1cm. Bake for approximately half an hour.  

Video

Watch Louise make Chocolate Florentines, one of her father's timeless teashop recipes.

 

Last updated: 21-Mar-2014 at 2:52 PM