By Don Mendoza
March 25, 2021
Feted British brands Nyetimber and Clarence Court have collaborated to dish out easy recipes for making that homecooked Easter meal extra special
It would be almost impossible to ignore the temptation to spice up your Easter celebrations with a bubbly-filled weekend brunch, while your tots and teens get their fill of painted chocolate eggs. To be sure, it’s without a doubt the perfect occasion for anyone to indulge in all manner of egg-inspired treats.
It does help that few ingredients are as versatile as the chicken’s egg. It is one of gastronomy’s most treasured supporting cast but can whole its own as the star of the dish. It’s also the inspiration for a unique partnership between two celebrated examples of English produce—Nyetimber’s award-winning English sparkling wines and Clarence Court’s prized eggs, which includes their deep brown, hard shell Burford Brown eggs and the organic Leghorn whites.
To be sure, the delicate richness of eggs pairs naturally with sparkling wine—and the options—be it a rosé or blanc de blancs that you may be craving—grows in relation to the wide assortment of ingredients featured in egg-based dishes. This is exactly why these two brands have collaborated to share a series of recipes for popular egg-based dishes, complete with wine pairing suggestions.
Here are some recipes to get you in the kitchen, as if you need egging on.
Crab and watercress tart
500g plain flour plus extra for dusting
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Finely grated zest of two lemons
250g unsalted butter, cold and cubed
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
6 spring onions, trimmed and finely sliced
50 ml whole milk
200ml double cream
70g watercress, chopped (a few sprigs saved for garnish) 250g picked, white crab meat
1 fresh red chilli, de-seeded and finely chopped
A handful pea shoots to garnish
1. Place the plain flour in a large bowl with a good pinch of salt and pepper and the zest of 1 lemon. Mix well then add the cold, cubed butter. Rub the butter into the flour using your fingertips until flakes have formed. Separate two eggs. Make a well in the centre and add the egg yolks and two tablespoons of ice cold water. Use a dinner knife to incorporate the flour into the liquid and form a rough ball of dough. Use your hands to pat it into a disc. Cover in clingfilm and place in the fridge for 30 minutes.
2. Once the pastry has chilled, lightly dust a clean work surface with flour. Roll out the pastry to 3mm thickness. Take 8cm x 8cm loose bottomed tart tins and line with the pastry, allowing a little overhang. Prick the bases a few times with a fork and allow the pastry to chill in the fridge again for 30 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, place a small frying pan on a low heat. Add the remaining tablespoon of butter and melt. Add the sliced spring onion and sauté for five minutes or until just softened. Tip into a bowl and place to one side. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C.
4. Remove the pastry cases from the fridge and place on a baking sheet. Line each with parchment paper and fill with baking beans or rice and blind bake for 10 minutes. Meanwhile whisk the remaining egg white a little. Remove the baking beans and parchment, brush the inside of the cases with egg white then return the pastry case to the oven for a further 5 minutes until lightly golden. Once baked trim the excess pastry off with a Y-shaped peeler.
5. Whisk the remaining eggs in a large mixing bowl with a good pinch of salt, pepper and a few gratings of lemon zest. Pour in the milk, cream, cooked spring onion and the chopped watercress then whisk again. Evenly distribute half the crab meat between the cases. Pour or ladle the mixture into the tart cases. Place the tarts in the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until set and golden. Serve warm or cold topped with the remaining crab, watercress sprigs, remaining lemon zest, pea shoots and chopped chilli.
Nyetimber’s Classic Cuvee Multi-Vintage goes beautifully with delicate and light crab combined with fresh and peppery watercress, like in this ideal lunchtime bake.
Unsalted butter, softened for greasing ramekins
2 egg yolks
4 egg whites
6 tablespoons caster sugar plus extra for coating ramekins
3 teaspoons cornflour
1 tablespoon plain flour
100ml double cream
100ml full fat milk
Pulp of 5 passionfruits, sieved to remove seeds
Icing sugar for dusting
Mango and passionfruit coulis and vanilla ice cream to serve
1. Coat the inside of four (150ml–200ml) ramekins with melted butter. Add a sprinkle of sugar to each coating, both the sides and bottom. Shake out any excess. Place these in the fridge to chill.
2. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Put a tray in the middle of the oven.
3. Put the two yolks into a separate small bowl and add six tablespoons of sugar. Mix the cream, flour and cornflour into a bowl until smooth.
4. Warm the milk in a saucepan until just boiling. Add this to the cream, flour and cornflour mixture a little at a time, whisking in between until the mixture is a thick, creamy consistency. Press any lumps against the side of the bowl to break them up.
5. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and set on a gentle heat. Beat vigorously and continuously with a hand whisk until it thickens. Ensure the mixture doesn’t stick to the base of the pan. Remove from heat when you feel it has thickened and whisk in the passion fruit pulp a little at a time. The heat of the pan will continue to cook the mixture.
6. Next, beat the egg yolk and caster sugar together to form a thick paste. Add this to the mixture in the saucepan and mix until smooth. Return the pan to the heat and when the mixture begins to bubble, take it off the heat again. At this point the mixture should look like custard. Put to one side to cool.
7. Meanwhile, whisk the egg whites in a clean, grease-free large bowl. Whisk until soft peaks form and the egg whites look like clouds.
8. When the mixture in the saucepan has cooled to room temperature or cooler, add the egg whites one large spoonful at a time using a spatula to fold it in. The aim is to fold in air bubbles without breaking them up. Continue until the mixture is a pale yellow with no streaks of egg.
9. Fill each ramekin to the brim. Ensure they are level and flat. Run a cocktail stick around the inside of the rim of the ramekin to ensure the soufflés rise without catching.
10. Place the ramekins evenly spaced on the baking tray for about 14 minutes in the middle of the oven. Don’t open the door while they cook but time carefully and at 14 minutes check if they are risen and golden. If using smaller ramekins, reduce the time by a few minutes.
11. Carefully remove from the oven, dust with icing sugar, serve with coulis and vanilla ice cream.
A tropical twist on a scrumptious soufflé. Serve with Nyetimber’s Cuvee Chérie Multi-Vintage; a refreshing demi-sec with honey and citrus flavours that works perfectly with a fruity dessert.