Gordon Ramsay´s "cooking the chef" challenge

Today two recipes from Gordon Ramsay, the chef for this month on the Cooking the chef challenge. We all know him from Hell´s Kitchen, Ramsay´s Kitchen Nightmare, MasterChef and many other TV cooking series. On top being a chef and a TV personality he also owns couple of restaurants and Michelin stars. I have couple of  his cook books home and the recipes I am going to share today are from his "Ramsay´s best menus" cook book, which I got as a present from my husband couple of years ago. The pages are divided in 3 sections: starters, main courses and desserts, so you can mix your own three course menu or stick to the given suggestions. I picked two summer recipes for the dinner last night a spinach tart and white chocolate mousse and have earned many compliments from my boys. Both recipes are pretty easy to make and perfect for the hot summer nights we are having right now in Spain. To the tart I served cooled sparkling white wine, which went perfect with the lightness of the crust and the creaminess of the filling.
I changed the original recipe a bit, by adding some fresh chard which I saw in the shop and needed to take with me. Original recipe yells for spinach only, I did a mix of both and it was very delicious too.

Creamy spinach and chard tart
  • 225 g flour
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 140 g chilled butter, diced
  • 4-5 tablespoons ice-cold water
Sift the flour and salt  into the food processor, add butter and whiz for 10 seconds. Put the mixture into the bowl and add some ice-cold water, bring the dough together (add more water if dough appears to be dry). Cover the dough with clean foil and chill it for 30 minutes in the refrigerator. Preheat the oven to 180C. Roll out the pastry and line 23cm tart tin. Bake the pastry for 15 minutes, then brush the base with some eggwash and bake for another 5 minutes. Let it cool.
  • hand full baby spinach
  • hand fill chard, stalks removed
  • 2 eggs, plus 2 extra egg yolk
  • 100 ml milk
  • 300 g creme fraiche
  • sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
Cook the spinach and chard in some water, until just witted. Drain and set aside to cool. In a bowl whisk together the eggs, egg yolk, milk, creme fraiche, good pinch of salt, cayenne pepper and nutmeg. Stir in the spinach and chard. Pour the mixture into the prebaked pie crust and bake for 25-30 minutes, till golden brown. Let it cool down for 10 minutes and serve with some chilled white wine.

I also slightly changed the original recipe for the dessert, where the cherries needed to be cooked in a 50g sugar, 50ml kirsch and 50 ml water mixture. Instead I served them fresh.

White chocolate mousse with fresh cherries
  • 100 ripe cherries, pitted
  • 200 g white chocolate
  • 350 ml chilled double cream
  • dark chocolate for grating
Put some of the cherries aside for a decoration in the later step, divide the rest of them between 4 individual glasses. Heat third of the double cream in a saucepan till just starting to boil, take it from the heat and add chopped white chocolate to it. Keep stirring until all the chocolate has melted, set aside to cool. Whip the remaining cream till it starts to thicken, fold in the cooled chocolate cream. Keep whisking to stiff peaks, if the combined mixture is not thick enough. Spoon the mousse on top of the cherries and decorate with remaining cherries, grated dark chocolate and some mint leaves.