October: What's Cooking?

We love to hear what you're cooking with Sous Chef ingredients, so we've asked you to get in touch! Each month someone will be chosen at random to receive a £50 Sous Chef Gift Voucher until end February 2014.

October's winner is Joanna B. There was such a diverse range of cooking - world recipes, low calorie meals, cakes from professional bakers, and cooking from Michelin star chef cookbooks. Thank you so much to all of you who shared your dishes with us. This month we've also sent a bonus £25 voucher to Jane L for the glorious picture of her cake with white chocolate shards.

To enter, and to see your creations here just email a photo and description of the dish to hello@souschef.co.uk, and confirm you're happy for it to be shared on the site. November's draw is on 1st December, so send us your photos before them.

October's entries anticlockwise from top centre.


Lemon & almond sponge cake with white chocolate chards from Jane L., using 1.5kg of white chocolate couverture to make the stunning two-tier cake. Underneath the chocolate is a very lemony sponge made with ground almonds, soaked with a lemon syrup and filled with lemon buttercream. Just look at it!

Homemade squid ink pasta from Joanna B, using squid ink, served with a prawn and a bisque-inspired sauce - the black contrasting with the glorious deep red and green from the basil.

Chocolate & Meringue Ghost Cupcakes from Milli M of baking company Mills & Spoon, piped using disposable piping bags.

Sat Bains' Popcorn / Passion Fruit / Miso from Billy "The dish is one of the finishing dishes from Sat Bains' tasting menu, but I like to cook it as a straight forward dessert. It isn’t too heavy as it is a collaboration of miso caramel (using miso paste), passionfruit, popcorn in 2 guises and a sweetcorn flavoured parfait."

Chocolate Marshmallow Teacakes from David W, making them using a disposable piping bag, a half-sphere silicone mould and round cutters.

Quick & Easy Low Calorie Shirataki Noodle Dish from Marie M, stirring shirataki noodles with smoked bacon & tomato sauce, and mixed frozen veg - all for 189 calories.

Mango Pate De Fruit from Chris L, using yellow pectin - apparently they went down a storm at work!

The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie from Kirstie McLatchie, who also included her (vegan) recipe, and a sweet intro (see base of page).

Dark Chocolate Slab with Popping Candy and Raspberries and White Chocolate Slab with Raspberries, Pistachios and Dried Coconut from Lizzy "These are a super easy and elegant end to a dinner or canape party - just melt one white chocolate bar and one dark chocolate bar over a bain-marie and then poured the liquid chocolate (separately) into two baking trays lined with greaseproof paper. Sprinkle popping candy and freeze dried raspberries over the dark chocolate, and freeze dried raspberries, chopped pistachios and dried coconut curls into the the white chocolate, and press them in very gently. Leave to set for at least 4 hours in a cool, dark place, then serve whole or break into chunks."

Vietnamese Spring Rolls from Olivia M using rice paper wrappers to roll together poached prawns, lettuce sprigs of coriander, crisp fried onions, and rice vermicelli noodles. With a dipping sauce made from chopped chilli, crushed garlic, fish sauce, lemon juice, sugar, water, soy and coriander.

Kirstie McLatchie's perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe

As the nights draw in and the temperature drops, all I can think about is getting the log fire on and curling up on the sofa with a batch of cookies and non-stop tea drinking.  I don't just want any old cookie.  I'm talking the perfect choc chip cookie.

The perfect cookie I’m hankering after for is crispy on the outside, chewy in the middle, a subtle hint of vanilla and warm smokiness to bring out the flavour of the melting dark chocolate chips, finishing with a sprinkling of salt to lift the heights of decadence.

Now, if you’re on the sous chef website, I’m assuming you don’t mind a few intriguing ingredients and a few extra steps in a recipe.  I’m talking Tahitian Vanilla pods, Dark Chocolate Couverture chips that will stay melty, Himalayan Pink Salt, a few drops of Pecan Liquid Smoke  and some resting time for the dough. It’s well worth it I promise.

Now, I'll let you in on a secret.  I'm vegan.  Being vegan doesn’t mean I lower the expectation for the perfect choc chip cookie, and my recipe can be made with normal butter and eggs or vegan alternatives, recipe contains both options.

So here it is, the non vegan and vegan perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe, perfect for a cool Autumnal afternoon.

Ingredients

Method

  1. Sift flours, baking soda and baking powder together and put to one side.
  2. Cream together butter and sugars for about 5 minutes until very light.
  3. Add eggs to butter and sugar and mix well.
  4. Add vanilla and liquid smoke to mixture.
  5. Add flour to mixture until just combined, about 5-10 seconds in a mixer.
  6. Add chocolate chips and combine gently.
  7. Add clingfilm over the dough – press it onto the dough in the bowl.
  8. Leave the dough in the fridge for 24 hours (36 if you’re strong willed enough!).
  9. Preheat the oven to 175 C.
  10. Scoop 6 100g of the dough and roll into a ball and place on greaseproof paper on baking tray.
  11. Sprinkly grate salt over them and bake for 18 minutes or until golden brown.
  12. Let them cool a bit then transfer to wire rack to cool a bit further.
  13. Eat. Drink tea. Snuggle up. Eat a few more.

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