Sunday, April 6, 2014

A Feast of Thrones

So...I really like Game of Thrones.

More than maybe is altogether healthy or advisable.  Or socially acceptable.

Tonight, as many of you may be aware is the premiere of season 4.  So I have prepared a Feast of Thrones (sort of).  Beef and Bacon Pie, and Iced Lemon Cakes.  I think they kind of fit the medieval vibe Thrones has going.

Both are from the official Game of Thrones cook book (yes I'm crazy).

These lemon cakes are Sansa's favorite in the books, and they're nearly my favorite in real life.  Basically bars of lemon pound cake with a deliciously tangy iced lemon drizzle on top.  So so sweet and tangy and delicious.

Iced Lemon Cakes
(makes 45-60 cakes, from A Feast of Ice and Fire)

For the cakes:

2.5 cups all purpose flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1.5 cups granulated sugar
2 tsp vanilla
3 large eggs
Juice from 1/2 lemon
4 Tbsp grated lemon zest
1 cup whole milk

For the icing:

3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 tsp unsalted butter

For the cakes:   Preheat the oven to 350.  Butter the bottom of an 11x17'' pan, line with parchment, butter again, dust with flour.  

In a medium bowl whisk together butter, baking soda, baking powder, salt.

In a separate bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar until fluffy.  Add the vanilla, then the eggs one by one.  Scrape down the sides.  Add the lemon juice and zest, mixing just until combined.  

With the mixer on low, add the flour mixture and milk alternatingly (is that a word?), starting and ending with flour mixture.  Don't overbeat.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan.  Bake for about 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 15 minutes.  Then, turn it out and allow it to cool another 15 minutes.  Then, place it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.  Remove the cake and cut it into 45-60 cubes.

For the icing:  In a double boiler, mix lemon juice and powdered sugar until smooth.  Add butter, stirring until melted and a smooth drizzling consistency has been achieved.

Drizzle the icing over each cube of cake, allowing it to run down the sides.

Here is the obligatory photo of Cricket looking oh-so-longingly at beef pie.  With bacon lattice.  Because that's how we do.

I haven't even tasted this thing yet but I'm pretty excited.  I'll return to this post and let everyone know how it is after it's been consumed.  It looks pretty neat though, huh?  Bacon lattice.

Beef and Bacon Pie
(from A Feast of Ice and Fire, serves 8)

14 strips of bacon
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 onion, diced
1 carrot, sliced into small pieces
1 medium potato, cubed
1.5lb stew meat, cut small
4 Tbsp all-purpose flour
3/4 cup beef broth
Salt and pepper to taste
Savory, a large pinch
1 pie crust, unbaked

Preheat the oven to 400.  

Weave the bacon into a lattice as wide as you can without leaving holes.  Place this onto a baking sheet lined with parchment.  Bake 20 minutes or so, until cripy.  Set aside to cool, but leave the oven on to bake the pie.

Melt the butter in a medium/large saucepan.  Add the onion, carrot potato and allow to cook on medium, stirring until the onion is tender, about 10 minutes.  

Coat the beef chunks in 2 Tbsp flour and toss well, until each piece is coated.  Add the beef on top of the vegetables, stirring and cooking until browned.  

Mix remaining 2 Tbsp flour into the beef broth, and add to the mix.  Add salt, peppery, savory.  Allow to simmer on low about 15 minutes or until a gravy has formed.  Allow to cool a bit.

Place the pie crust in a pie pan.  Add the beef mixture to the pie shell.  Top with the bacon lattice, and pinch the edges of the pie dough around the lattice.  

Bake 40 minutes.  Allow to cool about 20 before serving.

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