Smoked Salmon Tart with Prawns

Easy recipe for Smoked Salmon Tart with Prawns

This Smoked Salmon Tart with Prawns is one of my favourite recipes.  It is so quick and easy it is the perfect after-work supper.  If you don’t want to make your own pastry, ready-made is fine, and this makes the recipe even easier.

The inclusion of  smoked salmon and prawns  also gives this tart seem a bit special and luxurious.  This makes it also good for a dinner party or a fancy picnic.  Smoked salmon and prawns are not the cheapest ingredients but a little goes a long way in this tart.   I use smoked salmon trimmings, which are available in most supermarkets, and are much more affordable than smoked salmon slices whilst still having all the taste.

I make a lot of savoury tarts as they can be made ahead of time so are great in all kinds of situations –  family suppers, dinner parties, cold buffets or picnics – and are good either hot, warm or cold .  If you like this recipe, you may also like some of my other recipes such as Crab and Prawn Tart with Chilli and CorianderCaramelised Onion Tart, Tomato TartButternut Squash Tart or  Herb Tartlets.

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Other quiche and tart recipes

I make a lot of quiches and savoury tarts. In my view, they are one of the most versatile and useful dishes. They are easy to make and easy to divide into portions, they can be made in advance, they can be served hot or cold, there are a lot of vegetarian options which still seem to please meat-eaters and there are lots and lots of possible flavour combinations. In addition to this Smoked Salmon Tart with Prawns, some of my favourites from this are listed below.

Smoked Salmon Tart with Prawns

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Smoked Salmon Tart with Prawns

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  • Author: Tastebotanical
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 25
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 1 tart serving 8 people 1x
  • Category: Tart
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: English

Description

This Smoked Salmon Tart with Prawns is extremely easy to make and tastes luxurious!  If you don’t want to make your own pastry, you can use ready-made which will make it even easier.  Smoked salmon trimmings are used to keep the cost down.


Ingredients

Scale

For the pastry:

  • 275 g (10 oz) plain or all-purpose flour
  • 125 g fat (5 oz) (I use a mix of half butter and half Trex as I think this makes the lightest pastry)
  • Salt and pepper
  • A little water

For the filling:

  • 3 eggs
  • 200 ml (quarter of a pint) double or heavy cream
  • Salt and pepper
  • Half a teaspoon cayenne
  • A little grated nutmeg
  • 100 g (4 oz) smoked salmon trimmings
  • 125 g (5 oz) raw peeled prawns

Instructions

  1. Set your oven to 180 C, 350 F or Gas Mark 4.
  2. Make the pastry. Put the flour in a bowl.  Add the fat and combine –  either by “rubbing in” by hand or processing – until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add a little cold water (2-3 tbsp) and shape the mixture into a dough.
  3. Roll out your pastry and use it to line your quiche or flan dish.   Bake for 5  minutes in the oven to allow the pastry to “set”.  This will stop the filling making it soggy!
  4. Crack the eggs into a mixing bowl, add the cream, and beat until combined.   Season with salt and pepper – you will not need much salt as the smoked salmon is very salty.  Add the cayenne and nutmeg.
  5. Stir the smoked salmon trimmings into the egg mixture.
  6. Place the raw prawns in your pastry case.  Pour the egg mixture over them.
  7. Place your quiche or flan dish in the oven and cook for 25 minutes.
  8. The tart can be eaten hot, room temperature or cold.

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Lemon Biscuits (Lemon Cookies)

Simple Lemon Biscuits (Lemon Cookies)

These Lemon Biscuits (Lemon Cookies) are very quick and easy to make and also very versatile.  They are made of lovely buttery shortbread, flavoured with zesty lemon, and the addition of ground almonds keeps them moist and gives them a lovely crumbly texture.

What you need to know about making Lemon Biscuits (Lemon Cookies)

  • This is a really easy recipe which makes it perfect for those who are not experienced bakers. It is also a great recipe if you want to cook with younger children or for older children to cook by themselves.
  • It is also a very quick recipe – from bowl to table in under half an hour. This makes it great if you need to produce something yummy and home-baked and are short of time.
  • The addition of a small amount of ground almonds makes a real difference to this recipe. It makes the shortbread crumbly but moist and also goes really well with the lemon flavour.
  • I always use butter in this recipe as I prefer the flavour. However, if you are a vegan or wish to avoid dairy products, you can use a non-dairy substitute instead of the butter.

Loved this recipe? Check out the Recipe Index

Other easy shortbread and biscuit (cookie) recipes

Baking shortbread or biscuits (cookies) is a really good place to start for inexperienced bakers. They are generally very easy and do not take very long to bake. A lot of my recipes use floral flavours such as my Almond Shortbread with Rosewater or simple Lavender Shortbread or fruit such as my Shortbread with White Chocolate and Raspberries. Others are flavoured with herbs more generally used in savoury recipes such as my Thyme Biscuits (Cookies) with Pinenuts. If you are looking for an easy recipe to go with a cup of tea on a cold winter’s day, you could do worse than my Ginger Biscuits (Cookies) or my seasonal Cinnamon Biscuits (Cookies) with Tangerine and Dried Cranberries. I also have a great Cheese Biscuit recipe, which you can make with or without chilli, if you want a savoury snack.

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Easy recipe for home-made Lemon Biscuits (Lemon Cookies)

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Lemon Biscuits

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 2 reviews
  • Author: Tastebotanical
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 20
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 30 biscuits 1x
  • Category: Biscuits
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: English

Description

Crisp, buttery and zesty,  these Lemon Biscuits make a fantastic accompaniment to ice-cream or sorbet but are also great with a cup of tea!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 225 g (8 oz) butter
  • 85 g (3 oz) caster sugar
  • 275 g (9.5 oz) plain flour
  • 25 g (1 oz) ground almonds
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 200 g (7 oz) icing sugar (optional)

Instructions

  1. Set your oven to 200 degrees C/gas mark 6.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar together until pale and fluffy.
  3. Add the flour, ground almonds and lemon zest and combine to form a soft dough.
  4. Gently roll out the dough on a floured surface and cut into shapes using a cookie cutter.  I tend to make them either heart-shaped or round or  any shape you like!
  5. Place the dough shapes on a lightly floured baking tray.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes until firm and golden.
  7. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the baking tray for five minutes or so.
  8. If you wish, once the biscuits are completely cooled, mix the juice of half a lemon with the icing sugar to make a simple icing and drizzle it over them. Alternatively, you could just sprinkle each biscuit with a little caster sugar while it is still warm.
  9. Transfer the biscuits to a cooling rack and allow to cool completely.

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Lavender Ice Cream

Easy Lavender Ice Cream recipe

I make Lavender Ice Cream using my standard ice cream recipe. It has a wonderful floral creaminess which is perfect eaten in the garden on a sunny English summer day!

Lavender is a strong taste and needs to be used in moderation to avoid echoes of furniture polish!  Don’t be tempted to increase the amount in this recipe.  What you are looking for is a subtle whisper of lavender rather than a full-on bombardment of your taste-buds.    As it is such a strong flavour,  I would serve this Lavender Ice Cream on its own or possibly together with plain vanilla ice cream or maybe Lemon Shortbread biscuits.

You only need the egg yolks for this recipe which means you will have spare egg whites.  As I hate waste, I pretty much always make some form of meringue, when I make ice cream and, very conveniently, my meringue recipe requires four egg whites.  If you feel in the mood for meringue, you could check out my basic Meringue  or Pavlova recipes, or if you want something slightly different, you could try my Rose Meringue recipe.

Edible flower recipes – lavender, rose and elderflower

As is probably obvious from the title of this blog, I love using floral flavourings in my cooking. Lavender-lovers might like the recipes for Lavender Cake and Lavender Shortbread and Honey Cream Tea with Lavender Scones.

For rose-lovers, there are some great easy baking recipes including Rose and Strawberry Cream Cake and Almond Shortbread with Rosewater. For dessert, you could try Rose and Raspberry Pavlova or Rose Meringues. I also have a fantastic easy recipe for delicious floral Rose Petal Jam and an easy-peasy recipe for Crystallised Rose Petals.

For elderflower-lovers, there are recipes for Elderflower Ice CreamGooseberry and Elderflower Sorbet and Elderflower and Lemon Cupcakes. I also have a recipe for a classic Elderflower Cordial and also really easy recipes for Elderflower Gin and a lovely floral-flavoured Elderflower Vinegar.

Other home-made ice cream recipes

I am a great home-made ice cream enthusiast. I make it in the summer, of course, but am happy to eat it in winter too! There are some brilliant, shop-bought ice creams available but it is so easy to make your own. I like to experiment with flavours and some of my other ice cream recipes are listed below.

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Easy recipe for Lavender Ice Cream

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Lavender Ice Cream

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.6 from 5 reviews
  • Author: Tastebotanical
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 10
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: for 6 people 1x
  • Category: Ice-cream
  • Cuisine: English

Description

Rich and creamy, this Lavender Ice Cream is a great way of using the wonderful, floral taste of lavender.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 85 g caster sugar
  • 425 ml double cream
  • 3 fresh lavender flowers broken down into petals (or 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh lavender leaves)
Lavender Ice-cream, lavender ice cream recipe, lavender ice cream
Cream and lavender

Instructions

  1. Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar in a bowl until the mixture looks paler and resembles a mousse.
  2. Put the cream and lavender flowers or leaves in a saucepan and heat gently. Do not allow to boil – it will be the right temperature when you are just about able to bear to dip a finger in it!
  3. Remove the saucepan containing the cream and lavender from the heat.  At this stage you can strain the cream to remove all the lavender.  I generally don’t strain the lavender out as I like the little blue petals distributed through the ice cream but I know some people prefer a totally smoothe ice cream with just the flavour and no petals!
  4. Pour the infused cream into the bowl containing the egg yolks and sugar, whisking all the time.
  5. Transfer the combined mixture into a bowl set over a pan of simmering water or, ideally a double-boiler, as you need to reheat it very gently.
  6. The mixture will gradually thicken until it looks like a custard (which is what it is).  Stir regularly to make sure it does not stick while it is thickening.
  7. Remove the thick custard from the heat and transfer into a bowl.  Allow to cool to room temperature and then transfer to the fridge to become thoroughly chilled.
  8. When you are ready to make the ice-cream, transfer to your ice-cream maker and use according to your machine’s instructions.  If you do not have an ice-cream maker, you can place the mixture in a freezer-proof container, put in the freezer for several hours until half-frozen.  Whisk the mixture and then return to the container and replace in the freezer until totally frozen.

Notes

Make sure that you only use fresh lavender that you are sure has not been sprayed with chemicals.  The best place to source it is from your garden – it is very easy to grow!

If you do not have access to fresh lavender, you can use 2 teaspoons of dried culinary lavender.  The flavour is strengthened by the drying process, so the amount is less than that for fresh lavender.

Lavender Shortbread

Easy home-made Lavender Shortbread

This quick and easy Lavender Shortbread recipe is the perfect place to start if you have never tried using this delicious floral flavour in your cooking. The shortbread is buttery and delicious with a subtle lavender flavour. It is very simple to make and takes under half an hour from start to finish.

Plain shortbread is  delicious – it should have a fairly soft, crumbly texture –   but it also makes great vehicle to showcase a range of flavours,  including lavender, rose geranium, thyme, rosemary and lemon verbena.   It is a great accompaniment to a cup of tea or coffee and is also a good partner with ice-cream or sorbet.

I love lavender!  I grow several varieties in my garden and look forward to the first hot day of the year when you get a waft of lavender scent on the air and know that summer is truly here.   Lavender Shortbread is an excellent way of capturing the essence of this beautiful, fragrant plant.

Loved this recipe? Check out the Recipe Index

What you need to know about making Lavender Shortbread

  • This is a really easy recipe which makes it perfect for those who are not experienced bakers. It is also a great recipe if you want to cook with younger children or for older children to cook by themselves.
  • It is also a very quick recipe – from bowl to table in under half an hour. This makes it great if you need to produce something yummy and home-baked and are short of time.
  • In this recipe, I flavoured my shortbread with my shortbread with fresh, finely chopped lavender leaves from a plant in my garden. It is the leaves, rather than the flowers, that have the strong lavender flavour. If you are using fresh lavender you must be sure that it has not been treated with any chemical pesticides or herbicides.
  • If you do not have access to fresh lavender, you can buy dried culinary lavender in many supermarkets. However, you must make sure that it is labelled for culinary use.
  • Lavender has a strong flavour! Don’t be tempted to use too much. If you use the amounts specified in this recipe, you will get a subtly flavoured shortbread.
  • The addition of a small amount of ground almonds makes a real difference to this recipe. It makes the shortbread crumbly but moist and also goes really well with the lavender flavour.
  • I always use butter in this recipe as I prefer the flavour. However, if you are a vegan or wish to avoid dairy products, you can use a non-dairy substitute instead of the butter.

Using lavender in cooking

Lavender has many culinary uses and its fragrance works well in a variety of sweet and savoury dishes.   However, you do have to be a bit careful though as lavender is a very strongly scented plant and, if you use too much, it can overwhelm other flavours.  For this reason, I think it is best used on its own rather than in combination with other aromatics.

The history of culinary lavender

The English word lavender is thought to be derived either from Old French lavandre which is taken from the Latin lavare “to wash” which refers to the practice of using it in infusions or from the Latin livere “blueish” in reference to its colour.   Lavender (“nard” in Hebrew) is mentioned in the Song of Solomon. 

It was introduced into England in the 1600s.  At that time, it was used to make herb tea which was appreciated for its taste and for its medicinal properties.   It was also used to make a conserve which was prized by members of the aristocracy including, allegedly, Queen Elizabeth 1.    Although lavender is often now associated with southern French cuisine, it was not widely used until the turn of the 20th century and its use was popularised only later  by its inclusion in the 1970s in herbes de Provence, a blend of herbs invented by spice wholesalers.

Other lavender recipes

If you like this Lavender Shortbread you might like to try my rich and creamy Lavender Ice Cream, which is very easy to make, or my simple Lavender Loaf Cake.

Other easy shortbread and biscuit recipes

Baking shortbread or biscuits (cookies) is a really good place to start for inexperienced bakers. They are generally very easy and do not take very long to bake. If you like this recipe, you might also like my Almond Shortbread with Rosewater or simple Lemon Biscuits (Cookies). I also have a great Cheese Biscuit recipe, which you can make with or without chilli, if you want a savoury snack.

Loved this recipe? Check out the Recipe Index

Lavender Shortbread recipe

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Lavender Shortbread

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 3 reviews
  • Author: Tastebotanical
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 15 biscuits 1x
  • Category: Biscuits
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: English

Description

These crumbly shortbread biscuits, delicately flavoured with lavender, are fantastic as an accompaniment to ice-cream or sorbet – or just with a cup of tea!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 125 g (4 oz) butter 
  • 55 g (2 oz) caster sugar
  • 100 g (3.5 oz) plain flour
  • 20 g (1 oz) cornflour
  • 60 g (2 oz) ground almonds
  • 4 teaspoons fresh, finely chopped lavender leaves (or 2 teaspoons dried culinary lavender)

Instructions

  1. Set your oven to 200 C/400 F/Gas Mark 6.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar together.
  3. Add the flour, cornflour and ground almonds and combine.
  4. Detach the small lavender flowers from their stalks and add them to the mixture.
  5. Roll out the shortbread dough to a thickness of approximately 0.5 cm (or a quarter of an inch).
  6. Use a cookie cutter to cut out shapes from the dough.
  7. Put the dough shapes onto a greased baking tray.
  8. Bake the shortbread dough shapes for 15 minutes.  They will be done when they are firm to the touch and light golden in colour.
  9. Remove from the oven and transfer to a cooling rack.

Notes

If you are using fresh lavender leaves, make sure that they have not been treated with any chemicals.  Do not use shop-bought lavender unless it is specifically designated as “culinary lavender”.

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Thyme Ice-cream with Honey and Mascarpone

Thyme Ice-cream with Honey and Mascarpone

My Thyme Ice-cream, flavoured with honey and mascarpone, is rich and sweet.  Although many of the ingredients that I use are local to where I now live in south-west England – fresh thyme from my garden, honey from the man down the road who keeps bees – the flavours take me back to many happy summers in Italy.

I think my Thyme Ice-cream makes an excellent dessert after a summer meal – cooling and  creamy  but with a herby twist!  The taste of thyme is quite subtle in this recipe and is balanced by the other flavours, so this a good introduction to herb ice-cream for those who may be a little unsure about it.   If I am serving this at a dinner party,  I will usually serve it paired with another ice-cream with a less unusual flavour and let people choose which one they want!

I love herb-flavoured ice-creams.  I think the cream or custard base provides the perfect vehicle for many herbs and allows their flavours to sing out.  Herbs are the stars of the show and not just a supporting act!    Many herbs, which may be considered mainly of use in savoury dishes, make excellent ice-cream.   In addition to thyme, I think basil, bay, sorrel all make excellent ice-creams.  There are also, of course, other herbs such as lavender and lemon verbena, which are used in many sweet dishes and make fantastic flavourings for ice-cream.

Easy Thyme Ice Cream with Honey and Mascarpone

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Thyme Ice Cream with Honey and Mascarpone

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 1 review
  • Author: Tastebotanical
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: for 6 people 1x
  • Category: Ice-cream
  • Cuisine: English

Description

Try a sweet twist on thyme with this creamy Thyme Ice Cream with Honey and Mascarpone.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 200 ml (7 fl oz) double cream
  • A large bunch of fresh thyme
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 100 ml (3.5 fl oz) honey
  • 250 g (9 oz) mascarpone

Instructions

  1. Wash your thyme and crush it gently using the back of a spoon to release its flavour.  There is no need to remove the leaves from the woody stalks.
  2. Put the thyme into a saucepan with the cream.  At this stage, if you have time (as well as thyme..) you can leave the mixture overnight to allow the flavour to infuse.
  3. Next, heat the cream and thyme mixture gently. Do not allow to boil – it will be the right temperature when you are just about able to bear to dip a finger in it!
  4. Strain the cream through a sieve to remove the thyme.
  5. Whisk the egg yolks in a bowl until the mixture looks paler and resembles a mousse.
  6. Pour the thyme-flavoured cream into the bowl containing the egg yolks.
  7. Transfer the combined mixture into a bowl set over a pan of simmering water or, ideally a double-boiler, as you need to reheat it very gently.
  8. The mixture will gradually thicken until it looks like a custard (which is what it is).  Stir regularly to make sure it does not stick while it is thickening.
  9. Add the honey to the custard.
  10. Remove the thick custard from the heat and transfer into a bowl.  Allow to cool to room temperature and then transfer to the fridge to become thoroughly chilled.
  11. Add the mascarpone to the chilled custard.
  12. When you are ready to make the ice-cream, transfer to your ice-cream maker and use according to your machine’s instructions.  If you do not have an ice-cream maker, you can place the mixture in a freezer-proof container, put in the freezer for several hours until half-frozen.  Whisk the mixture and then return to the container and replace in the freezer until totally frozen.

Notes

There are many varieties of thyme and any are fine in this ice-cream.  I used lemon thyme as I particularly love its flavour.

Other thyme recipes

Thyme is one of my favourite herbs. I like to make Thyme Biscuits with Pinenuts which are fantastic with my Thyme Ice Cream but are also great on their own. I also make a simple Thyme Loaf Cake which allows the flavour of this lovely herb to take centre stage. Thyme is also a really good flavouring in savoury recipes such as Shallot Tart with Thyme.

Other home-made ice cream recipes

I am a great home-made ice cream enthusiast. I make it in the summer, of course, but am happy to eat it in winter too! There are some brilliant, shop-bought ice creams available but it is so easy to make your own. I like to experiment with flavours and some of my other ice cream recipes are listed below.