Contestants Recipe – Sarma (Cabbage rolls) a stuffed Cabbage Dish
Ingredients (for 6 servings)
1 bigger sour cabbage (about 1 kg) – sour cabbage type of cabbage popular in Croatia
300 g smoked meat (bacon & ribs or any other selection of cuts roughly chopped)
400 g sour cabbage (finely chopped)
2 laurel leaves = 2 Bay Leaves.
1 teaspoon mixed ground black pepper
Ingredients for the Stuffing
2 tablespoons oil
200 g onion (finely chopped)
30 g bacon (finely chopped)
800 g minced meat (pork and beef) = 400g pork + 400g beef (800g in total)
4 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
80 g rice Type – White Rice
100 ml water
1 teaspoon ground sweet pepper
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
Ingredients for the Roux
3 tablespoons oil
1 tablespoon flour
1/2 teaspoon ground sweet pepper
1 tablespoon tomato paste
300 ml water
Sauté finely chopped onion and bacon in heated oil.
Add minced meat, garlic, an egg, rice, water, ground sweet pepper, salt and black pepper. Stir well.
Separate cabbage leaves from the root and cut off hard parts. Rinse under water.
Add meat mixture to one leaf, roll and push the ends towards the middle.
Take the half of chopped cabbage and spread it on the bottom of a pot. Spread smoked meat on top of the cabbage. Arrange the rolls circularly on top of everything, add laurel and black pepper and cover everything with the remaining chopped cabbage.
Pour enough water to cover the cabbage and put on the stove to cook. When it boils, lower the heat and let simmer for 2 hours.
For the roux, sauté flour on oil until it becomes light brown. Stir constantly, and slowly add sweet ground pepper, tomato paste and water.
Add the roux to sarma and stir well. Let simmer for a little longer. Serve sarma with mashed potato.
Catherines Recipe – Hazelnut Meringue with Summer Berries
Makes 2 individual medium sized or 1 large meringues
For the meringue
6 large egg whites
300g caster sugar
1⁄2 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp vanilla extract
60g toasted chopped hazelnuts
For the filling
4 tbsp icing sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
Juice of third of the lemon
For the berry coulis
75g caster sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
Arrowroot to thicken
150g strawberries, sliced
Edible flowers, lemon balm and a few sprigs of rosemary, to finish
For the meringues:
Preheat the oven to 120°C/fan 100°C/gas 1. Line 2 x 23cm loose base springform tins with parchment paper.
Place the egg whites in a clean, dry bowl, whisk until stiff but not dry. Gradually whisk in the caster sugar, a tablespoon at a time. Beat in the vanilla, the cream of tartar and most of the chopped hazelnuts.
Divide the meringue mixture into the two tins ensuring they are level on top, scatter the remaining hazelnuts over and place into the preheated oven.
Bake for 2 hours until set. When they’re done, leave them in the oven with the oven door slightly open so that the meringues can cool.
For the coulis
Place the strawberries and raspberries into a saucepan with sugar. Set over a medium heat. Crush with a wooden spoon or fork until the sugar has dissolved and the berries broken down. As this point, taste and add a little more sugar, depending on the acidity of the berries. Strain through a sieve, then return to the saucepan, adding in the zest of lemon and thickening lightly with the arrowroot (the arrowroot get mixed with a little cold water and then added to the coulis and heated through). Set aside and allow to cool fully
For the cream filling
whisk the cream, mascarpone, lemon zest, juice and icing sugar until firm peaks. Then swirl in about 1/4 of the coulis (keeping some pink streaks in the cream mix).
Place each on a serving platter, spoon the berry cream mix over, top generously with the fresh fruit and decorate with the fresh herbs and edible flowers.
Serve the remaining coulis on the side.
Tip: the tidiest method to drizzle the coulis is to fill a disposable piping bag and snip a tiny piece from the tip, thus giving a light drizzle for decorating.