Bougatsabastian Noel

Baking, Dessert, Snack, Survivor, Survivor: Ghost Island, Sweets, TV Recap

Previously on Survivor, twenty castaways were marooned in Fiji – again – with a fresh little twist added into the game called Ghost Island. Some say it is an excuse for more advantages and idols to be thrown into the game, others say it is home to all the cursed artefacts from Survivor seasons past which are waiting to come and reverse the curse. Anyway, Stephanie Gonzalez was first out the door thanks to Jacob being sent to Ghost Island first … which sadly only delayed his boot to second. Morgan was then swap-fucked followed by the continuing decimation of Malolo and my erection with zaddy Brendan, Stephanie – exempt from the erection part due to my aggressive homosexuality – James, Bradley and his teeny mouth, Chris and his ego, Libby, Des and Jenna before true tragedy struck as Michael was booted. While my heart wasn’t in it after that, the game continued and Chelsea and Kellyn followed him out the door, which leads us to here.

The final six features Sebastian is super sweet and looks super stoned, though has the opportunity to reverse the curse of the extra vote. King Donathan is adorable, got island hot, played a wild, oft chaotic game and I hope returns with Aunt Patty. Laurel is still here thanks to ruining everyone’s plans to take out Wendell and Dom, Angela is just here against all odds … I don’t even know what to say. Anyway, it all comes down to either Wendell or Dom, with Wendell amassing idols and friends along the way and Dom collecting idols, fakes and advantages though hasn’t made many friends.

Back at camp after booting Kellyn, everyone was still reacting to Donathan’s attempt to use chaos as a ladder. While Wendell joked about being disappointed not to help him get out Domenick, Laurel – or Yanny – told Donathan he was lucky not to get himself voted out. Because heaven forbid someone plays for better than third. Thankfully Sebastian has opted for the final six to be his moment to start playing the game, so hopefully he puts his extra vote to good use.

The next day Domenick and Wendell reconvened away from the rest of the tribe to see how best to overcome losing Donathan’s vote. While he turned against them, they still felt it was better to take out Sebastian since he is more of a threat – really? – and decided the only way to both make final four, is for one of them to win immunity. Yanny was present for the entire conversation but like this season, didn’t really contribute … though it would be a gag if she actually screwed up the plans which seems to be her thing.

Talk of the challenge manifested Probst for the final six immunity challenge where they would run a skull-maze to collect puzzle pieces before solving said puzzle. Everyone but poor Donathan and Domenick seemed to be neck and neck grabbing the puzzle pieces with Sebastian ahead when it came to solving the puzzle, followed by Laurel, Wendell, Angela and Domenick while Donathan wandered around the maze. In any event, Wendell continued his puzzle dominance, screamed for Probst to check his puzzle and didn’t have immunity snatched from him again. In addition, he got to enjoy a steak dinner which he shared with Sebastian and Angela with both he and Domenick ‘she deserves it man’ Abbate playing for those jury votes, much to the chagrin of Laurel who really wanted that steak, damnit.

The final six returned to camp with Wendell celebrating finally snatching an immunity win and guaranteeing his place in the final four thanks to his hidden immunity idol. He then joined Sebastian and Angela to smash a coupla steaks and get them all thinking that Donathan would be getting booted tonight, despite planning to take out Sebastian. Thankfully Sebastian realised he needed to build a resume, so thought it would be a good time to use his extra vote and take out someone big. Back at the camp Laurel continued to rage about Wendell fueling Angela ahead of the next immunity challenge, since she is the one that will need it to survive. Her rage at least made Dom nervous about his getting the boot. Sebastian joined Angela and Donathan to talk about just how many idols Dom has – they agreed one – and to get rid of him next with the help of his extra vote. Angela, bless, was just thrilled to be part of the plans for once. Sadly she channelled Laurel and blew said plans up by taking the information straight to Dom. Don and Laurel caught up with him sharing the fact Sebastian has an extra vote, with her deciding that maybe it is finally within her best interests to get rid of Domenick. Dom then caught Wendell up and briefly debated whether he should play it or keep it until tomorrow.

At tribal council Laurel spoke about the battle between playing big or smart – por que no los dos? – Donathan shared that he still felt nervous following the chaos he caused the night before … which Sebastian agreed with. Dom called shade, sorry, bullshit and said that he thinks Donathan accepting defeat is all an act to get him out in cahoots with Sebastian and his extra vote. Sebastian was shocked he found out, while Donathan said despite plotting against them, he knows they’re packing idols and as such knows he is going. Dom then continued his epic show for the jury trying to make Donathan look bad, though his nonchalance is totally making him look glorious and them look terrible. He then threw some bros around to mock them and it was iconic.

Dom continued to attempt to perform for the jury with Dom handing over his fake idol to Probst ahead of the vote, Sebastian and Donathan played cagey and Laurel seemed confused. With that, the tribe voted and before Probst read the votes, Dom opted to point out the idol he played was fake and pointed out how brave he was. Sadly it appears he was brave and also lucky, as the votes rolled in for Sebastian and sent him from the game.

Given Sebastian is one of the nicest damn people to walk the planet, he wasn’t too bothered to have been aggressively booted from the game. I even mentioned Angela straight-up ruined the plan to get him to bite and it didn’t. When I brought out the Bougatsabastian Noel however, I couldn’t get him to bloody stop biting.

 

 

As you could probably tell, I’m craving a bit of Greek at the moment so it was kind of convenient that Seb’s boot meant I could roll on from my ball party with some sweetly, spiced custardy goodness. Add in the flaky filo case and I was in absolute heaven. Heaven, I tells ya!

Enjoy!

 

 

Bougatsabastian Noel
Serves: 12.

Ingredients
3 cups milk
125g raw caster sugar
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
1 cup semolina
pinch of salt
½ cup unsalted butter, plus 1 tbsp
375g filo pastry
icing sugar, to dust

Method
Place the sugar and milk in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil to dissolve the sugar. Reduce heat to low and stir through the vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg before slowly adding the semolina while stirring. Cook for a couple of minutes, or until it starts to thicken. Remove from the heat and stir through the tablespoon of butter, transfer to a bowl, cover and leave to cool completely.

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Melt the remaining butter and  brush around the base and edges of a springform pan. Press a couple of sheets of filo into the tin and repeat the process of brushing the inside of the tin and added a few sheets of filo at a time, moving them around the tin, leaving about five-ten sheets of filo aside. Spoon in the custard and smooth the top. Trim the remaining pastry and place over the top of the pie, one at a time, brushing with butter in between. Fold the overhanging pastry in, brush with more butter and transfer to the oven to bake for half an hour, or until golden and crisp.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about fifteen minutes before dusting with icing sugar and devouring.

 

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Pastéis de Natalie Wood

Baking, Dessert, Golden Globe Gold, Golden Globe Gold: Goldhood, Snack, Sweets

It has been a busy start to the year catching up with some of my nearest and dearest Golden Globe winners slash friends, that I started to get all sentimental. While my dates with Rach, Az and Nay all carried a certain emotional gravitas, reconnecting with the man that saved my life in the form of Ids really started to make me feel misty. And made me think of one friend I always wish I had been able to save – the divine Natalie Wood.

As you know, Annelie and I were dear friends with the Wagner-Woods and their extended friend group. What you don’t know, is that I was meant to be on the boat with her, Bobby Wags and my ex-lover Christopher Walken that night until Chris and I had a fight when I tried to open up our relationship, and I refused to get on the boat.

“Please Ben! We’ll have such a wonderful time, my love,” Nat asked in her gentle way.

“If Chris doesn’t want me to see any more semen, I won’t be seeing anymore Sea Men,” I shrieked.

That was the last thing I ever said to Natalie Wood.

I whipped out the time machine and charted a course for the summer of ‘80 to spend time with my dearly departed friend, far enough away from her death to not try and interfere.

Since I obviously couldn’t let slip any future details, lest I set off a butterfly effect, I ran the remaining film odds while in the delorean. Obviously I am rooting for Allison Janney and Margot Robbie to take out a one-two punch for I, Tonya, though I firmly think they will split Best Supporting Actress and Best Actress in a Comedy with the Lady Bird crew of Laurie Metcalf and Saoirse Ronan. Which way that splits I’m not sure, but I have a good feeling about my fellow Gold Coaster’s chances. For Drama Frances McDormand or Sally Hawkins will win, though I’d far prefer a tie while Best Comedy or Musical will go to Get Out, unless Greta Gerwig doesn’t win Best Screenplay, in which case it will be Lady Bird.

With no distractions remaining – outside of her impending death – we were free to have a positively delightful date, toasting her then recent Globes win. It was also such a treat to have a less explicit final interaction while devouring my Pastéis de Natalie Wood.

 

 

Creamy, rich and wholly delicious, these little babies are the perfect treat for catching-up with friends, gambling and gives you enough energy for the rigors of time travel.

Enjoy!

 

 

Pastéis de Natalie Wood
Makes: 24.

Ingredients
500ml milk
1 cinnamon quill
1 tbsp vanilla extract
70g plain flour
485g raw caster sugar
6 egg yolks
3 sheets puff pastry, for no other reason than being lazy and time travel already taking up enough time as it is

Method
Combine the milk and cinnamon in a saucepan and bring to a simmer before removing from the heat and allowing the quill to steep for a few minutes. Discard the quill and whisk in the vanilla extract.

Place the flour in a small bowl and whisk in about a quarter of the liquid to form a thin roux. Return to the pan with the remaining milk and bring to a simmer once again and whisk the roux back in for a couple of minutes, or until thickening. Turn off the burner, but leave the pan over the heat.

Meanwhile combine the sugar in a pan with 200ml of water and bring to the boil for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Slowly whisk the syrup into the milk mixture until you’ve got a thick white liquid. Giggity.

Place the yolks in a large bowl and then slowly add the thick white liquid while constantly stirring until it is well combined. Cover with cling touching the surface and set aside while you work on the pastry.

Heat the oven to 230°C.

Cut each sheet of pastry into 9 squares and press into the holes of 2, 12-hole muffin pans, trimming the edges to form neat little cases. Pour the custard into each shell, stopping about 1cm from the top and bake for about 15 minutes, or until golden and scorched in places.

Cool in the pan for five minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. If you can stop yourself from devouring them instantly, that is.

 

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Brandy Custard

Condiment, Dip, Party Food, Sauce, Side, Snack, Sweets

Guys *spoiler alert* this is the last regular, non-Survivor, non-festive-spectacular recipe of the year. Can you believe it?

Now before you start applauding and rioting on the Facebook – which if you ask my mother-in-law’s man-friend is the internet – begging for us to be banned from the internet in 2017, just enjoy these last few moments for the year and I’ll let you have a few weeks off before I terrorise your eyes for another year.

Please – I’m just a poor, old, flailing millennial and I need this outlet. Where is Probst to comment on my generation, when I need him?

Anyway – I’ve gotten sufficiently off track … but I feel such a beautiful and talented soul like my dear friend Brandy Norwood is deserving of some long winded preamble, as terrible as said preamble is.

I first met Brandy in the early ‘90s when I hired her as a backing vocalist for my defunct girl group Gurlfriend. It is defunct because the hit Australian girl group Girlfriend sued me for being a blatant rip off.

Which it wasn’t.

I had promised Brands fame and fortune if she took up the role, so to make it up to her I secured her the lead role in Moesha.

Despite a brief falling out after she won a Grammy in ‘99 for That Boy is Mine, which i wrote but was sadly stricken from the credits, we reconnected on the set of Brie Larson’s defunct sitcom Raising Dad in 2002.

Fun fact: to punish her for making me miss out on a Grammy, I went back in time and forced her to star in I Still Know so that I could watch her be survived by JLH. How do you deal, Brands?

While yes, sending her back to star in that trainwreck was cruel, Brandy took it all in her stride and we’ve remained close ever since. She is, no lie, a damn saint.

So I had completely forgotten that you can’t have an Eve Plumb Pudding without a generous helping of Brandy Custard. Thankfully Brandy had a clear schedule – I mean empty, bupkis, zippo – and was able to jump straight on the plane to whip some up with me to help devour the leftovers.

 

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Full disclosure and likely not shocking anyone, I used to be the proud owner of an irrational fear of brandy custard. As far as I’m concerned though, anyone that has suffered through the cartoned crap should.

Brands finally wore me down and convinced me to whip her up a batch and now I have a passionate love for the boozy, velvety delight – enjoy!

 

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Brandy Custard
Serves: 8.

Ingredients
6 egg yolks
⅓ cup raw caster sugar
2 tbsp cornflour
⅔ cup milk
3 cups double cream
¼ cup brandy
1 tsp vanilla bean paste

Method
Combine the yolks and sugar in  one bowl and the cornflour and milk in another.

Heat the cream in a saucepan over low heat and slowly whisk in the egg and cornflour mixtures, followed by the brandy and vanilla bean. Continue whisking for a couple of minutes, or until thick and glorious. Serve warm with Eve Plumb Pudding.

 

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Eve Plumb Pudding

Baking, Cake, Dessert, Snack, Sweets

Oh my goodness – I didn’t realise losing Florence Henderson would be this hard.

As one of my first loves, I always knew my heart would break but given we were never able to launch a spin-off of her Retirement Living cooking show – which would have looked suspiciously like Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party – I’m distraught that I couldn’t help add a final jewel in the crown of her TV legacy.

But alas, this isn’t all about our dearly departed Florence …  and that is in no small part, thanks to the beautiful, caring support of my dear friend Eve Plumb, who helped me work through my grief.

As you know, Annelie and I connected with The Bradys via Mo and were cast as the worse versions of cousin Oliver. While we were wiped from the show’s history, we remained close with the kids – particularly Evie.

Like her character on the Bunch – oh, have I never mentioned we all called it the Bunch on set? ‘Cause we did – Eves was always the most down to earth (albeit a little jealous) member of the cast, and she took me under her wing and tried to help me through my multiple addictions and countless scandals throughout the years.

Fun fact: I am the one who got her into painting … which I took up when in rehab with my gal pal, Caz Fish.

I hadn’t seen Evie since her appearance in the Emmy Award winning production Grease: Live and was looking forward to toasting to her success and was on the phone to her when we heard about dear Flo’s passing.

It completely knocked me, I broke down and Evie knew that she was the only one that would be able to help me snap out of it – we actually inspired that scene in Moonstruck – and process my grief.

Of course, Eves was right about helping me, though making and devouring my Eve Plumb Pudding – as you probably guessed on Monday – should also take some of the credit, given its proven therapeutic benefits when it comes to helping process grief. In addition to being delicious.

(Talking about our sodden appearance on Sally Jessy also lifted our spirits, obviously … but that isn’t necessary to this story).

 

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I used to make this pud on set – which is pieced together from my grandmother’s handwritten par-recipe – every year to celebrate filming the last episode before our break and it was everything you want from Christmas and more – fruity, rich and ready to stuff you up … it sounds like everything I want in a man.

Enjoy!

 

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Eve Plumb Pudding
Serves: 2 mourners.

Ingredients
400g raisins
300g currants
150g sultanas
100g prunes, roughly chopped
100g dates, roughly chopped
250ml spiced rum
250g butter, at room temperature, plus extra to grease
1 cup muscovado sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
4 eggs
2 ½ cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp nutmeg
¼ tsp ground cloves
Brandy custard, to serve

Method
This takes some planning ahead, ok? So I apologise, but place the fruit in a large bowl with the rum and leave to steep overnight to a day – the longer the better, you want that fruit completely written off.

Grease a two litre capacity pudding basin with extra, soft butter and line the base with a circle of non-stick paper. Leave aside.

In a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until pale, fluffy and creamy. Add vanilla and each egg, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Combine all the dry ingredients in a bowl and fold through the pulsating-ly fluffy egg, butter and sugar mix. Fold through the boozed up fruits and pour the batter into the prepared pudding basin.

Now for the fun – lol – place an upturned saucer – or something low and heatproof that fits – in the base of a large saucepan. Half fill the pot with kettle-boiled water and simmer over low heat.

While that is getting bubbly, cut a large square of non-stick paper and an equally sized square of foil. Fold them together, pleating at the middle to secure and place over the lid of the basin, foil side up. Press it down tightly and secure with kitchen twine like a poorly wrapped christmas present.

Lower the basin until the non-chalantly bubbling water – adding more if the tide is not high. Cover the pot as securely as possible and steam for 4 hours, or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Check on the pot throughout cooking and top with more boiling water as required – use your judgement.

Remove from the basin, allow to rest for about half an hour and turn out.

Top with warmed brandy custard … which reminds me, I need to make a call.

Obviously you can devour while I’m on the phone – maybe check back over the weekend?

 

As you can probably tell, we are very social but the fun isn’t only limited to celebrities! You can follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and Google+.

Dawn French Toast

Breakfast, Main

To be blunt, a TV comedy vicar is quite possibly the best person to go to for spiritual guidance and emotional sustenance.

The Meggstravaganza really takes a lot out of me, not even taking into account the post ritual peyote withdrawals I suffer. I really needed something to provide me with support and love, and thankfully Dawny is always up to act as my human bra. Both literally and figuratively.

She likes soft pecs, that’s for sure.

But I’ve digressed – it was such a thrill to see Dawn and recharge the batteries with such a close friend.

We gossiped over the upcoming Ab Fab movie  in which we both have cameos and my ongoing feud with Ruby Wax (she knows what she did and a saint like Dawn won’t change my mind – this girl is going to stay on top), before she begged me to pass on a script she had worked on to star in alongside Judi Dench.

While I told her I would, I am clearly going to doctor the script, re-write her role to be for me and pass it off as my own work before Judi’s deteriorating eyes never get a chance to see it.

I’ll write in a cameo for her though, as I am such a bloody delight.

We all know that Dawny has a very well publicised obsession/love for pasties and as much as I enjoy being antagonistic with my friends, I just couldn’t bring myself to make one based solely on carrots. Plus, they act like whoopee in my guts and that would just be a disgusting disaster … thus I went with her second favourite meal, my Dawn French Toast.

 

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This may come as a shock but sweet breakfasts aren’t really my thing, as who can go past bacon. Now I know that bacon goes well with sweet things, like French Toast, but I generally opt for haloumi and/or mushroom and/or (who am I kidding … they are all ands) hash browns.

Once again, I’ve digressed. Given that Dawn is one of my sweetest friends and she starred in an hilarious and underrated comedy named after a Marie Antoinette misquote that should have referenced brioche, I felt it was appropriate to dip my toe in the sweet breakfast pool and slather the fluffy, custardy bread in a good, hearty dollop of Cinnamonica Seles Apples.

Oh, and carrots … but I don’t think she actually noticed them. Enjoy!

 

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Dawn French Toast
Serves: 2.

Ingredients
2 eggs
⅓ cup cream
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 tbsp brown sugar
4-6 thick slices Briocher Bünsberg (but in loaf form, ok?)
30g butter

Method
Whisk the eggs, cream, vanilla and sugar together in a large, flat bowl.

Melt the butter in a large non-stick pan over medium heat until it is foamy and beautiful.

Dip the brioche into egg mixture, flip over and allow excess to dip off before placing into the hot pan. Cook for a minute or so, flip and cook for a further minute, or until golden and crisp.

Serve and slather with the condiments of your choosing, bacon and some maple is good … but the Cinnamonica Seles Apples are better.

 

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Ciera Beesting

Cake, Dessert, Survivor: Cambodia - Second Chance, Sweets

It was truly sad to see Ciera idoled out of Survivor: Second Chances. Despite living very different lives (us being super famous and high profile, Ciera never making the final three and therefore being irrelevant), we have always wanted her in our inner circle because, despite her failures, she is a total badass.

You see, we have all disappointed Ciera’s mother/Survivor alumnus Laura Morett through our various types of bad-assery. Ciera made one of the ballsiest moves in Survivor history voting Laura out. Naturally, Laura was pissed but had plenty of admiration for her daughter’s ambitious gameplay.

Rather than voting Laura out, I have never let her in to our highly sought-after inner circle. Recently, Laura attempted to persuade canine political expert and Hilary Clinton advisor Nigella Martha Rodham Hailes (also known as our resident Cavalier King Charles Spaniel) into managing her campaign for Oregon House District 20. Sadly Nigella was busy preparing for Battletoads 2, so it wasn’t to be. Obviously, my constant smack talk about Laura after last year’s amaretti scandal may have influenced this. What kind of monster restricts people to two cookies at a time?

 

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I digress. It is Ciera we are here to comfort on her arrival to Ponderosa. What will provide her some much-needed comfort to ponderova (get it?) where it all went so wrong?

 

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Ciera Beesting
Serves 12

Ingredients
Brioche
¼ cup whole milk
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 ¾ cup plain flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature

Almond topping
½ cup honey
¼ cup brown sugar
½ cup salted butter
¾ cup sliced almonds

Pastry cream filling
1¼ cups milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
3 large egg yolks
¼ cup caster sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cornflour

Method
In a small saucepan, combine milk and honey and gently heat until just warm. Pour into the bowl of the stand mixer with dough hook attached, add yeast and allow to bloom.

Once yeast has bloomed, add flour, eggs, salt, sugar and butter. Knead with dough attachment until elastic. Cover and allow to rise for 1 hour.

Once proved, butter and line a medium size springform pan. Gently deflate the dough and then add to springform, stretching dough to fill the base of the pan. Allow to rise again for 20 minutes. Preheat oven to 180C.

While dough is proving for the second time, make the almond topping. In a small saucepan, combine honey, butter and brown sugar and stir until combined. Add almonds and pour over risen brioche dough.

Bake in oven for 22-25 minutes or until top springs back and almonds are golden. Leave to cool while you make the pastry cream.

For pastry cream, combine sugar and egg yolks in a medium bowl. Sift in the plain flour and corn flour and gently whisk until mixture is a smooth paste.

In a saucepan, combine milk and vanilla until simmering. Remove from the heat and gently add into the egg/sugar mixture, whisking constantly to temper eggs.

Once all combined, pour back into saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until thick.

Once pastry cream is complete, gently split cake with a serrated knife. Place base  back in springform tin, top with pastry cream and then with top of cake. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.

 

As you can probably tell, we are very social but the fun isn’t only limited to celebrities! You can follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and Google+.