Easter Inspired Delights

By Simone Conti

I wish all Cranleigh Magazine readers a happy Easter and best wishes from my family.

Stuffed Egg Gratin

Serves 4 – Suggested Wine: Austrian Riesling

– 8 large eggs
– 60g mayonnaise
– 60g grated mature cheddar cheese
– 4 tablespoons of breadcrumbs
– 1 small bunch of parsley
– salt to taste
– 60g sour cream
– 50g butter
– 2 teaspoons of sweet paprika
– 8 filets of anchovies


1.  Let’s begin with the eggs. Boil them for 8 minutes until they are hard boiled. Drain and let them cool off for 10-12 minutes. Once cold, peal, cut in half and with the help of a spoon, remove the yolks.

Tip: Press the eggs gently with the palm of your hand on top of the chopping board and they will crack, this will allow you to peel them quicker.

2.  In a large mixing bowl prepare the stuffing. First, finely chop the parsley and add all the yolks you removed before plus two of the half egg whites. Add the mayonnaise, sour cream, paprika and salt. Mix all the ingredients with a wooden spoon until smooth and textured.

3.  Now fill all the egg whites with the stuffing. Then sprinkle with butter, breadcrumbs and cheese.

4.  Preheat the oven and set at 200 degrees or gas mark 8 and bake the eggs for 12 minutes. The delicious eggs gratin is ready to serve.

Easter Lamb Cutlets

Serves 4 – Suggested Wine: Primitivo (Italy)

– 16 lamb cutlets
– 4 eggs
– grying oil
– salt
– black pepper
– 300g flour
– 250g breadcrumbs


1.  Using a sharp knife make some small cuts in the edge of the cutlets to keep them from curling up. With the help of a meat tenderizer (or if you haven’t got one, the back of a medium kitchen ladle will work just fine), flatten the meat down as much as possible without damaging the cutlets.

2.  You now need 3 mixing bowls: in one place the flour, in another the eggs which have to be slightly beaten and in the third the breadcrumbs. Start by coating the cutlets in the flour, then pass them into the eggs and finally into the breadcrumbs bowl.

NOTE: Make sure the final coating of breadcrumbs is firm, if in doubt pass the lamb through the breadcrumbs again!

Pour the frying oil into a large frying pan. Make sure it is enough to cover the cutlets once they’re in the pan. Place on a moderate heat so the oil will not burn. When the oil starts to boil, fry the lamb cutlets until a nice golden colour.

NOTE: With the oil at the right temperature, it should take around 2 minutes for each side to cook.

3.  Prepare a large serving dish with kitchen paper on top of it. Place the lamb onto the dish and the kitchen paper will absorb the excess oil. Serve the cutlets with freshly mixed salad, making a delicious contrast with the meat!

Banoffee Pie

Serves 10-12 – Suggested Wine: Sauterne (France)

The first time I tasted a Banoffee Pie was when I arrived in London in 1997. From that day on I ate it every time I went to a cafe or restaurant. Until one day in 1999, I went out for lunch in the Portobello Road with a group of friends, where I tasted a pie that was so good – I asked to meet the chef! He kindly gave me the recipe which I will share with you so you can enjoy it too!

– 2 tins sweetened condensed milk
– 400g digestive or malt biscuits
– 200g unsalted butter
– 3-4 bananas, ripe but not going brown


1.  Remove the labels from the condensed milk tins. Place the tins in a large deep saucepan. Cover with hot water and bring to the boil. Place the lid on the pan and return to a gentle boil. Cook for two hours (remember keep topping up the water during cooking). Once cooked leave it to cool off for a few hours.

2.  To make the pie crust, grind the biscuits in a food processor to a fine crumb. Pour  in the melted butter and keep mixing. Put the contents into a mixing bowl and mix it well. Taking a cake tin approximately 2in deep and 10in wide, spread the mixture onto the base and up onto the sides. Place in the fridge to firm up for 2 hours.

3.  Open both cans of the cooled, caramelised milk and tip into a bowl. Mix well to soften it up then spread one fifth of the mixture over the bottom of the pie crust. Peel and slice the bananas 1cm thick.

4.  Spread the slices evenly in the tin and press into the caramel. Spoon the remaining caramel on top of the bananas and smooth it over with the back of a spoon.

5.  Cover the pie with cling film and leave it to chill in the fridge for a minimum of 3 hours before serving. Enjoy your Banoffee Pie!!!

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