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Food & Drink: Queen's master baker shares stunning recipes fit for monarch - including Aperol scones

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For any business, clients don't come much more A-list than the British royalty, something celebrity chef and French pâtissier Eric Lanlard knows all too well.

He's been baking his famous cakes for the royal family and many other celebrities for years.

Here are some of his favourites...

Aperol sultana scones

Makes 16

Preparation time: 15 minutes, plus overnight soaking

Cooking time: 10–12 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 225g self-raising flour, plus extra for dusting
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 25g golden caster sugar
  • 50g unsalted butter, diced
  • 2 tsp orange blossom extract
  • 125–150ml buttermilk
  • 4 tbsp milk
  • 50g golden sultanas, soaked overnight in Aperol
  • beaten egg, to glaze

Method:

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1. Preheat the oven to 200°C /400°F/gas mark 6. Line a baking sheet with baking paper.

2. Sift the flour into a mixing bowl, then stir in the salt and sugar. Add the butter and rub in using your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the orange blossom extract.

4. Mix the buttermilk and milk together in a jug. Pour the buttermilk into the bowl, a little at a time, and gently mix together. Before the dough has completely come together, add the sultanas and combine to form a smooth, but slightly sticky dough. Do not overmix.

5. Turn the dough out onto a very lightly floured surface and knead briefly (3–4 times only) to remove the cracks, then roll out to 3cm thick.

6. Using a 5.5cm diameter plain cookie cutter, stamp out 16 scones. Place on the prepared baking sheet and brush the tops with beaten egg.

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7. Bake in the oven for 10–12 minutes until well risen and golden. Transfer to a cooling rack and leave to cool.

8. Serve with French champagne jelly and cream (optional)

Clementine & pomegranate cake

Serves 12

Preparation time: 25 minutes, plus cooling cooking time: 2-21⁄2 hours

Ingredients:

  • 4 clementines or satsumas, unpeeled
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Oil, for greasing
  • 6 large eggs
  • 225g light muscovado sugar
  • 1 tsp gluten-free baking powder
  • 300g ground almonds

For the syrup:

  • 1 pomegranate, halved
  • 25g light muscovado sugar
  • 1 tsp orange blossom extract
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste

To decorate:

  • 3 tbsp apricot jam (warmed)
  • Icing sugar, for dusting

Method:

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1. Put the clementines or satsumas and cinnamon stick into a saucepan, cover with cold water and bring to the boil.

2. Reduce the heat, cover with a lid and simmer for 1-1.5 hours, then drain the fruit and remove the cinnamon stick.

3. Leave to cool for 30 minutes, then halve the cooked fruit and discard the pips. Put the fruit, including the peel, into a blender or food processor and blend to a purée. Set aside.

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4. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan oven/gas mark 4.

5. Grease a 23cm diameter, 9cm deep cake tin and line with baking paper.

6. Whisk the eggs and sugar in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water for about 5 minutes until pale and mousse-like.

7. Take the bowl off the heat and add the baking powder, almonds and fruit purée. Fold in gently but thoroughly.

8. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.

9. Reduce the oven temperature to 160°C/140°C fan oven/gas mark 3 and bake for a further 30 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

10. Leave to cool in the tin for 15 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.

11. To make the syrup, squeeze the pomegranate halves to extract the juice, reserving the seeds, then pour the juice into a small saucepan. Add the sugar and bring to the boil, then simmer for 2 minutes.

12. Leave to cool slightly (the liquid should still be warm), then stir in the orange blossom extract and vanilla paste.

13. Using a pastry brush, “soak” the cake with the warm pomegranate syrup and leave in the tin until completely cold.

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14. Remove the cold cake from the tin and place on a serving plate. Brush the warmed apricot jam all over the cake, including the sides.

15. Just before serving, scatter the reserved pomegranate seeds over the top of the cake and dust with icing sugar.

Cacao beef on pain perdu

Makes 12

Preparation time: 15 minutes, plus marinating (2 hours, or overnight)

Cooking time: About 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 400g beef fillet
  • 2 pinches of salt
  • 1 tbsp cacao nibs
  • 1 tbsp vanilla bean paste
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 225ml milk
  • 3 eggs
  • Small pinch of ground cinnamon
  • 60g unsalted butter
  • 6 slices of brioche loaf, each cut into 2x5cm squares
  • Baby watercress or pea shoots, to garnish
  • Olive oil, for drizzling

Method:

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1. Put the beef into a sealable freezer bag, then bash with a rolling pin or meat mallet until the meat is about 1cm thick. Don’t be too rough or you will shred the meat – the aim is to tenderise it.

2. Remove the meat from the bag, place it on a chopping board and rub 2 pinches of salt, the cacao nibs, vanilla bean paste and some pepper on both sides. Return to the bag, seal and leave to marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, but preferably overnight.

3. In a shallow dish, mix the milk, eggs and cinnamon together. Heat half the butter in a large frying pan. Soak the brioche slices in the egg mixture for a few seconds, turning once. Carefully lift into the pan and, in batches if necessary, cook for 1-2 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Remove from the pan and keep warm.

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4. Heat the remaining butter in the pan until piping hot, it smells nutty and the milk solids have turned lightly brown. Add the marinated beef and cook for 30-60 seconds on each side until cooked to your liking but preferably still pink inside.

5. Leave to rest for 5 minutes, then slice into thin squares the same size as the brioche.

6. Top the pain perdu with the beef slices and garnish with watercress or pea shoots.

7. Drizzle with a little olive oil, then serve.

Camembert & apple tarts with walnut drizzle

Makes 12

Preparation time: 25 minutes, plus cooling

Cooking time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 25g unsalted butter
  • 2 firm dessert apples such as Granny Smith or Cox, peeled and cut into thin wedges
  • 1 tbsp clear honey
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 375g ready-made all-butter puff pastry
  • Plain flour, for dusting
  • 150g Camembert, sliced

For the walnut drizzle:

  • 50g walnuts
  • 3-4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp chopped tarragon
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method:

1. Pre-heat the oven to 180-200°C fan oven/gas mark 6.

2. Heat the butter in a pan, add the apples and fry until golden all over. Just before you remove the pan from the heat, stir in the honey and balsamic vinegar. Leave to cool.

3. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to 2mm thick.

4. Using a 6cm diameter plain cookie cutter, stamp out 12 discs. Grease six boat-shaped mini tart tins, about 12 x 5cm, and use six of the pastry discs to line the tins trimming off any excess pastry.

5. Place an empty tart tin on top of each lined tin and fill with baking beans or rice to prevent the pastry from puffing up.

6. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes, then remove the extra tart tins and beans. Return to the oven and bake for a further 2-3 minutes until cooked through and golden.

7. Transfer the tart cases to a cooling rack. Leave the tart tins to cool, then repeat with the remaining pastry discs.

8. Meanwhile, make the walnut drizzle.

9. Put the walnuts, oil, tarragon ands alt and pepper into a food processor and blitz until it has the texture of pesto without being completely smooth.

10. Set aside.

11. Fill the tart cases with the apple mixture and top each with a slice of Camembert.

12. Bake in the oven for about 8 minutes until the cheese is all lovely and melted. Drizzle the walnut oil over the tarts to garnish. Serve warm.

Recipes from Eric Lanlard: Afternoon Tea. For more information visit cake-boy.com or follow Eric on Instagram @eric_lanlard.

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Style secrets of the Queen’s wardrobe .
A royal fashion expert reveals some surprising things about the Queen’s fashion.But there’s a lot more to Her Majesty’s fashion choices than just bright frock coats and matching hats, as Bethan Holt discovered while researching her latest book, The Queen: 70 years Of Majestic Style.

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