Saturday mornings during (what we call) our ‘pre-child’ era often meant long sleep-ins followed by a simple breakfast that was lazily mustered together with one eye closed; at a time that technically would be considered lunch.
Fifteen plus years & 4 kids later, Saturday mornings are now quite different!
They are much busier and of course long sleep ins are completely out of the question.
In fact, it’s almost impossible when you have an ever growing ‘to-do’ list you’re trying to catch up on.Add that to the kids in your bed, ‘too loud for that time of day’, full of energy shenanigans, whining over trivial things & the many cries of hunger as though the kids haven’t been fed in weeks. And we can’t forget soccer, lost shin pads, shoes & jerseys!
In light of all that, we really have grown to love Saturdays. Look, it certainly wasn’t one of those ‘love at first sight’ kinda things. We’ve just, somewhat, become increasingly acquainted through acceptance & a familiarity of sorts. Once we get over that initial morning bump, the weekend is the only oppurtunity we get to have some quality family time. And that’s special. From a big leisurely breakfast, outings, board games or movies or (what we’re really loving of late) cooking up a storm in the kitchen.
My older three are not so little anymore (13, 11 & 9) so cooking together has become a lot more fun. They’re yet to master the ‘cleaning up’ stage but otherwise it’s great to see them come up with their own ideas (mostly sweet!) and enjoy going out and shopping for what’s needed.
Saturday grocery shopping isn’t always a family affair. But when it comes to our our local farmers’ market we do make an outing out of it. We love going to Ramsgate Organic Foodies Market. It really is such a fun way to ‘shop’ and I love that you always come home with something unexpected.
Up until about a year and a half ago I’d never really been to a farmers’ market and I actually never really knew what they had to offer. From the fresh seasonal produce, the spices, breads & cakes, the friendly faces, to just simply being outdoors. Now I can’t get enough!
This last Saturday, Sydney finally gave us some beautiful blue skies. Soccer was done for the day so we headed over to the foodies market to pick up some goodies. On this occasion we came home with passionfruit, a loaf of traditional Irish soda bread, some dukkah (a mix of Egyptian roasted spices & nuts, which I want to use to recreate a dish I ate out recently) and some super delicious Crimson Snow apples that we bought off Yuri (the apple farmer from Orange). Yuri was such a joy to chat to. As he cut into one of those shiny red spheres of crispness, for us to have a taste, he told us about the snow that fell around their town recently, his son going snowboarding and how much he loved our multicultural society. I loved his passion. He danced about as he spoke, gleaming with a pure aura, you could really feel how proud he was of his produce. And so I knew I had to make something special with those apples from Orange!
My recipe idea started off as an apple turnover. I remembered the ones I used to eat so often as a child from the small bakery that was a few minutes walk from home. I imagined the crispy pastry with the sweet apples & whipped cream all bathed in so much icing sugar it would end up all over my face & clothes. Definitely not a good look! But it was such a guilty, messy pleasure that was oh so yummy to eat that, really, I didn’t care how I looked.
Anyway, Saturday being Saturday, the turnover idea turned & became more of a tart with my baklawa spin, just because, well who doesn’t love the taste of baklawa!
So here goes…
What you’ll need:
2 large Crimson Snow apples (or Pink Lady)
1/4 of a lemon
50g unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 sheet puff pastry
1/3 cup pistachio, coarsley chopped
1/3 cup walnuts, coarsley chopped
1/3 cup almonds, coarsley chopped
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 tablespoon butter (extra), melted
Use a 20cm oven-proof frying pan as a template to cut out a circle from the pastry sheet. Core & thinly slice up two large apples. Overlap apples around the same frying pan. Squeeze lemon juice over apples to keep from browning.
On a medium heat add the 50g of melted butter over the top of apples with the brown sugar & a tablespoon of water. Once sugar dissolves & begins to thicken, remove from heat and place pastry sheet over the top of apples.
Place the frying pan into a 200°C pre-heated oven. You will know it’s ready once puff pastry is golden & crisp. This should take approximately 10-12 minutes.
As you wait for the tart to cook, prepare baklawa nuts & spices by toasting nuts in a small saucepan for 2 – 3 minutes. Add the additional 1 tablespoon of butter, white sugar & cinnamon. Take off heat once butter is melted, sugar dissolves and all ingredients are combined.
Turn out tart onto a plate and serve with the baklawa nuts & spices & a scoop of vanilla ice cream.