A hasty post for SHF as I'm in the middle of studying for a fellowship interview on Thursday (yaikes!) in Paris (yeah!). So our flat is sparkling clean, my bills have been organized, I've been for a run, met a friend for coffee and cooked lots of yummy food this weekend. But still, the slides for the presentation are not finished and I've read much less than I should have! Part of it is that I always overestimate what I can do but, as you can tell, a big part of it is that I get incredibly distracted when I have very important deadlines and will do anything but that!
So SHF was another great distraction and as Andrew from SpittoonExtra picked such a fabulous theme it would have been rude not to partake. I wanted to use my newest weird ingredient, these long peppers I bought on my holiday in Paris three weeks ago. I had read about them in an article on pepper varieties in Saveurs (food magazine) a while ago and had been on the look out for them ever since. So when I saw the bottle, I knew it was mine...when I opened it, I was greeted by a sweet spicy vanilla smell so my first association was to use it in dessert although I've later read they are used more in savory recipes.
As I was a bit short on time, I decided to alter a recipe I used before. Instead of the honey syrup I made a syrup of sugar, water, brandy and long pepper and I substituted the oranges for apples (about 6). I grated 2/3 into the batter and cut 1/3 into slices to layer in the bottom of the tin with sugar, butter and some grated long pepper. Unfortunately, we only had Boskoop at home and they cooked to mush so I didn't get the nice French apple tart top I was going for but the taste was still great. The semolina made it nice and crunchy whilst the batter was moist from the fruit and syrup. The pepper gave it a hot cinnamon-like taste (so you can substitute with some ground cinnamon and chili powder)and the brandy made you feel nice and warm inside. A perfect autumn dessert!