It´s that time of year here when you need to “put the garden to bed”. Before you tuck it in for the winter, you can hack back the summer growth and give it a little room to breathe.
The interent and phone were down most of Sunday and all day Monday. Frustrating but being “incomunicado” forces you to get up off your nether region and do something! Gardening was the answer.
After a morning of hard work in the garden, we needed something to reward ourselves with – what better than steak and chips? Steak is a rare treat for us, so we tend not to mess around with it too much. A little massage with olive oil and seasoning, and onto the grill pan. Chunky potatoes cooked in olive oil, and a little English mustard mixed with mayonnaise do it for me.
I had some leftovers from making my Chicken, Mushroom and Bacon Pie (recipe to follow another day) , so decided to make an easy dish to go with the steak and chips.
I cut what remained of the puff pastry into two rectangles and lightly cut (but not all the way through) another rectangle about one cm inside the outer edges of the pastry. I brushed the pastry with milk and baked at 200ºC for about 15 minutes until puffed up and golden. When the pastry had cooled down I pushed in the middle section of the rectangle to leave a hollow space.
With very little oil I fried 4 thinly sliced mushrooms with 2 crushed cloves of garlic until soft then added 2 heaped tablespoons of chopped bacon. I then added 1 heaped tablespoon of plan flour and stirred until it was cooked through. I gradually added splashes of milk (about 5 or 6 in total), stirring all the time until I had a thick sauce and then filled the pastry cases with this. I put them back into the oven on a low heat until I was ready to dish up the rest of the meal.
A lovely glass of El Coto Rioja went down well with this and we sat outside for 15 minutes in the last of the afternoon´s sunshine admiring out work and drinking a good strong coffee. It was a good day.