Christmas is for sharing, so what better gift to give than the gift of knowledge? Culinary knowledge that is! Luckily for us, renowned chef Robin Gill has personally rustled up a selection of mouthwatering recipes that will have your guests begging for more. Famed for his adventurous meals, Gill has worked in a slew of award-winning restaurants around Europe, including The Oak Room in London and Italy’s two Michelin-starred Don Alfonso 1890. Fortunately Gill returned to the UK and took over The Diamond Club at Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium where he cooked for high-profile guests such as Nicolas Sarkozy and Gordon Brown before settling into his current position as head chef at Restaurant Sauterelle. Located within Bank’s Royal Exchange, Restaurant Sauterelle offers gorgeous views of the river and a dose of effortless French charm. Gill describes his style as “creating innovative flavour combinations as a playful take on French classics.” If this seems somewhat intimidating, here’s the perfect opportunity to surprise your cynical self by cooking up your own storm over the holidays. But be careful what you wish for – with recipes like this you’ll have half of London knocking at your door for leftovers.
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Venison and quail scotch eggs
200g venison mince
1/2 bunch of parsely
1/2 bunch of tarragon
1 spoon whole grain mustard
Zest of 1 lemon
1 pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 shallot (finely diced)
5 drops Worchester sauce
12 quail eggs
For the breading
100g dried bread crumbs
3 eggs (whites only)
1. Bring a medium sized pan of water to boil and gently cook the quail eggs for 2 and 1/2 minutes. Cool in cold water, peel and keep for later.
2. Place the mince in a large mixing bowl and add all ingredients, mix well, then cook a little of the mixture in the frying pan to taste. Once you’re happy with the taste, start to prepare the scotch eggs by moulding the mixture around the quail eggs.
3. When you’re finished, place the eggs in the fridge to set for one hour; meanwhile prepare the egg whites, flour and breadcrumbs in separate bowl.
4. Roll the scotch eggs in the flour, then the egg, and finally the breadcrumbs.
5. Place them in the fridge until they have set.
6. When ready to serve, heat a deep fat fryer to 180c and fry for 2 minutes until golden brown.
Tips – Serve as canapes with celery, salt and a mustard mayonnaise.
Star anise creme brulee with fresh satsuma and walnut crunch
For the creme brulee
300ml full fat milk
750ml double cream
1 vanilla pod
8 star anise (toasted)
6/7 sprigs of tarragon
100g caster sugar
170g egg yolk
10g star anise sherbert
For the walnut crunch
90g nougatine (walnut/caramelised sugar)
90g dried brown bread
45g icing sugar
30g corn flour
45g butter (soft)
For the orange puree
300g orange zest
500g orange juice
150g caster sugar
450g butter (soft)
1. In a large flat-bottomed pan add the star anise and toast on medium heat for 30 seconds. Follow with the milk and cream, the vanilla pod with the beans scraped out and bring to a simmer. Add the tarragon and leave to infuse for 10 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, put the sugar to a large mixing bowl followed by the egg. Mix, rather than whisk.
3. Bring the first mixture to a boil and strain over the egg and sugar. Mix well.
4. Place the mixture into a jug and pour into desired moulds suitable for baking. Place the filled moulds into a deep baking ray and fill 3/4 of the way with hot water. Place the tray in a preheated oven at 100c and cook for approximately 30-40 minutes.
5. Leave to cool in the fridge until needed.
1. Blend the bread and nougatine in a food processor until it resembles breadcrumbs. Then add the sugar, corn flour and butter bit by bit, finally adding the egg.
2. Place the mixture in a fridge for 10 minutes and then place some of the mixture flat on a sheet of grease proof paper. Place another sheet over the mixture and use a rolling pin to roll flat to about 1/2cm. Place in the freezer for 30 minutes.
3. Remove the sheet from the freezer, cut the desired shapes and bake in a preheated oven for approximately 8 minutes at 150c. Leave to cool.
1. Place the lemon zest in a pan with enough water to cover it and place on a medium heat. Bring the pan to boil and simmer for up to an hour, adding water whenever needed.
2. Once the zest in cooked (taste to make sure it has lost its bitterness), remove it and combine with sugar and orange juice and bring to boil in a pan.
3. Place the ingredients in a food processor and blend while still hot, adding the butter slowly to create a smooth puree.
4. Place in an airtight container and store in the fridge until needed.
1. Peel the satsumas and break into segments, slice the segments in half lengthways with a sharp knife.
2. You should have 32 pieces of satsuma. Take half of them and dip them into some icing sugar flesh side down. Caramelise the sugar-coated with a blow-torch.
3. Sprinkle icing sugar over the top of the brulee and place a spoonful of the orange puree on each plate and spread across. Place the creme brulee in the centre of the plate with some french satsuma. Then place a piece of walnut crunch on each plate along with some fresh basil and serve.