Tag Archive: paul foster

  1. Paul Foster’s Carbonara

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    A few words from Paul…

    “Carbonara is one of the dishes that epitomises Italy’s cuisine. It’s simple, beautiful, and pure, but so easy to mess up.

    When I was young my understanding of a carbonara was any pasta, sliced ham, mushrooms, double cream, and cheddar cheese. It wasn’t until 2002 when I was 20 years old and picked up a copy of Heston Blumenthal’s Family Food and read his recipe. Whilst it wasn’t 100% authentic it changed the way I thought about this dish, and I wanted to find out more. I fell in love with the technique of creating the rich sauce through the egg, cheese and pasta water. There is skill and discipline in getting it just right. Too much heat and it’s scrambled egg, not enough and it’s thin and raw tasting without the gloss.

    The classic recipe calls for guanciale which is a cured pig cheek bacon that has a high ratio of fat. I get mine from Salt Pig Curing who are my favourite English charcutier company. Guanciale is hard to get hold of in this country so don’t guilt yourself if you have to use pancetta just get the best you can afford, and you will still produce a lovely dish.

    This dish will be quite tricky for novices, but stick at it as practice makes perfect. For professionals, you will notice a little difference in this dish. Whilst I have full respect for the original, this method is slightly tweaked to get a better sauce.

    I had read into this method and was inspired by visit my visit to Lucciano Cucina in Rome. Chef Luciano Monosilio is known as the carbonara king which is a very worthy title in my opinion. He uses the same ingredients apart from switching out some of the pecorino for grana padano, I agree that this gives a better flavour balance.

    The key difference is that instead of making a paste of the cheese and egg yolk he makes almost a hollandaise style sauce using the egg yolks and cheese then whisks in them and guanciale fat. It was without doubt the best carbonara I have ever eaten I was so inspired by this I have done a similar technique below. This gives a more of a custardy kind of feel to the sauce. I will never make it another way now.”

    We don’t know about you, but Paul Foster’s Carbonara is now our ONLY Carbonara!

    Serves: 4 (primi portion)
    Medium skill

    Ingredients for Paul Foster’s Carbonara

    • 280g dried spaghetti
    • 5 eggs
    • 30g Pecorino Romano (to finish)
    • 30g Grana Padano
    • 200g Guanciale
    • Black pepper


    Cooking Method for Paul Foster’s Carbonara

    1. Trim the dry exterior off the guanciale, cut into thick lardons around 2cm in width, and then spread them out evenly in a cool dry Stainless Steel Tri-Ply 24cm Frying Pan and heat slowly.
    2. Colour all over and remove from the heat, strain off the fat and keep warm so it doesn’t solidify.
    3. Cook the pasta in boiling salted water until al dente.
    4. Whilst the pasta is cooking, put the egg yolks into a large bowl with a spoon of the pasta water. Place the bowl over a pan of simmering water and whisk to a light fluffy sabayon.
    5. Finely grate the cheese and whisk it into to the yolks.
    6. Remove from the heat when the egg yolks are light, airy and leave a whisk trail when you lift it.
    7. Season with a twist of black pepper and slowly whisk in the warm guanciale fat.
    8. When the pasta is cooked, drain and add to the sauce, toss well and add the guanciale. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
    9. Twist the pasta in a ladle with large tweezers and spoon into a warm bowl.
    10. Evenly spread out the guanciale and finish the dish with grated pecorino and a twist of black pepper.
  2. Paul Foster’s Valencia Style Paella

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    A few words from Paul…

    “In the UK we tend to think of paella as a seafood rice dish. As tasty as that version is, the original comes from Valencia in Eastern Spain and contains chicken, rabbit, and snails but no seafood.

    I like nothing more than eating a seafood paella full of fresh mussels, langoustines, prawns, and squid with a bottle of white wine by the coast, but as there are so many variations of this dish across Spain, I wanted to develop a recipe that fully respected its origins.

    Eastern Spain is one of the most important rice growing regions in the country. 1200 years ago, rice was introduced to the Spanish moors and the farmers would cook rice in a pan over a wood fire to share for lunch.

    For this dish its best to use the leg, shoulder and wing cuts as they don’t overcook and have a better texture. There are many stories about where the name paella is said to come from but the most likely is that it came from the name of the pan it is cooked and served in.

    Once you have mastered the technique for a paella then you can experiment and adapt the ingredients. The key is the cooking of the rice… don’t be scared of keeping the heat high as that’s what builds the ‘socarrat’ which is the crust that forms on the bottom and sides of the pan, and in my opinion the best part of a good paella.”

    Serves: 2
    Medium skill

    Ingredients for Paul Foster’s Valencia Style Paella

    • 250g rabbit on the bone
    • 250g chicken on the bone
    • 50g extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 ripe tomato
    • 100g of runner beans cut into 2 inch pieces
    • 100g tinned butter beans drained
    • 250g Bomba rice
    • 800g chicken stock
    • 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
    • saffron, small pinch
    • Sweet smoked paprika, small pinch
    • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled
    • Salt


    Cooking Method for Paul Foster’s Valencia Style Paella

    1. Cut the rabbit and chicken into evenly sized pieces, around 60g-70g each.
    2. In a paella pan or large frying pan, add the oil and heat on high. Next, add the meat (skin side down) and fry on high heat until golden brown.
    3. Add the runner beans to the pan and then fry with the meat for 1 minute.
    4. Sprinkle in the smoked paprika and stir well.
    5. Chop the garlic finely and add to the pan, stir and cook for 2 minutes.
    6. Grate the tomato to a pulp and then add it to the pan. Cook for 1 minute until it starts to catch lightly on the bottom of the pan.
    7. Bring the stock to the boil and add to the pan, keeping it on a high heat, so it comes straight back to the boil. Then sprinkle in the saffron and add the butter beans.
    8. Add the bomba rice and stir in well to ensure it is well incorporated.
    9. Keep the rice on full heat for 10 minutes and don’t stir at all.
    10. After 10 minutes, turn down to a low heat and cook for 5/6 minutes.
    11. Remove from the heat, place 2 sprigs of rosemary on top, and cover with a tea towel. Leave it for 2 minutes so the rice takes on the aroma of the rosemary.
    12. Serve immediately in the middle of the table in the cooking pan.
  3. Lamb Rack, Lamb Fat Hasselback Potatoes, and Asparagus

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    In honour of British Asparagus Month, we’re sharing a recipe from Paul Foster’s wonderful new cookbook ‘How to Cook Meat Properly’.

    Paul has an amazing culinary history, working across the world, including at renowned restaurants  Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons and  L’Auberge de l’Ile. This recipe is another of his modern British showstoppers.


    For the Rack of Lamb

    • 1 four-bone rack of lamb
    • 5 sprigs thyme
    • 50g of butter
    • 2 cloves garlic

    For the Lamb Fat Hasselback Potatoes

    • 500g minced lamb fat
    • 2 small Maris Piper potatoes
    • Sea salt

    For the Asparagus

    • 10-12 spears of asparagus

    For the Lamb Sauce

    • 200g lamb trimmings
    • 2 tsp sunflower oil
    • 2 banana shallot, peeled and cut in ¼
    • 3 cloves garlic crushed
    • 10 sprigs thyme
    • 10 coriander seeds
    • 300g dry white wine
    • 300g reduced chicken stock
    • 450g reduced lamb stock

    To finish:

    • Extra Virgin Rapeseed Oil


    Rack of Lamb:

    1. Place the rack of lamb fat-side down in a hot frying pan. Heat until golden in colour.
    2. Add the butter and thyme to the pan. Lightly crush the garlic and add that as well. Keep a moderate heat to the pan so the butter is foaming.
    3. Use a spoon to baste the meat and the bones. Ensure the lamb stays fat-side down at all times.
    4. Place the pan into the oven at 170c and cook for around 10 minutes so the eye of the meat is pink. It should be 50°C in the centre.
    5. Remove and allow to rest for 8-10 minutes.

    Lamb Fat Hasselback Potatoes:

    1. Add 100g of water to the lamb fat and bring to the boil in a heavy-based pan.
    2. Cook until all of the water has evaporated, stirring regularly.
    3. Turn the heat down and render the fat until it is golden brown.
    4. Pass through a sieve.
    5. Pre-heat the oven to 190°C.
    6. Wash the potatoes and cut three-quarters of the way down with a sharp knife. Each slice should be 1-2 mm apart.
    7. Season the potatoes with salt and submerge in the lamb fat.
    8. Heat on the stove until the fat reaches 180°C then place the pan in the oven and cook for 30-40 minutes.
    9. The potato should be golden and crispy and fluffy in the centre.
    10. Drain on kitchen towel and season with sea salt.


    1. Cut the woody end off the asparagus and peel the skin around an inch from the top, all the way down.
    2. Wrap in a damp cloth until needed.
    3. Blanch the asparagus in boiling salted water for 2 minutes when the lamb is resting.
    4. Remove and season with sea salt.

    Lamb Sauce:

    1. Brown the lamb trimmings in the oil.
    2. Add the shallots and continue to brown.
    3. Add the white wine to deglaze and reduce by ¾.
    4. Add the rest of the ingredients.
    5. Bring to the boil and cover.
    6. Simmer gently whilst covered for 30 minutes.
    7. Adjust the consistency by reducing if needed and season to taste.
    8. When finished pass through a fine sieve and a muslin cloth.

    To serve:

    1. Carve the lamb into slices down the bone.
    2. Ensure the potato is hot by flashing through the oven for a couple of minutes.
    3. Arrange the components on the plate.
    4. Heat up the sauce and spoon over.
    5. Finish with a drizzle of extra virgin rapeseed oil.

  4. Roasted Pheasant Crown Warm Chestnut, Sprout & Bacon Salad, Cranberry Ketchup by Paul Foster

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    Here is a Christmas knockout for you! Wonderful chef Paul Foster, head chef at Salt in Stratford-upon-Avon, has created this sumptuous Roasted Pheasant dish for us.

    Paul has an amazing culinary history, working across the world, including at renowned restaurants  Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons and  L’Auberge de l’Ile. This recipe is another of his modern British showstoppers.


    For the Roasted Pheasant Crown

    • 1 pheasant, prepared to the crown
    • 150g salted butter
    • 2 cloves garlic, lightly crushed
    • 6 sprigs thyme
    • 100g smoked streaky bacon, cut into 2cm chunks

    For the Sprout and Bacon Salad

    • 200g sprouts, broken down into individual leaves
    • 200g chestnuts, steamed and peeled
    • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
    • 20g cider vinegar
    • 100g sunflower oil

    For the Cranberry Ketchup

    • 250g fresh cranberries
    • 150g light brown sugar
    • 75g balsamic vinegar


    Sprout and Bacon Salad:

    1. Discard the first few outer leaves of the sprouts and separate the next layer of leaves. Once you get to the inner of the sprout, where it becomes tight, finely shred and keep to add at the last minute.
    2. Bring a large pan of water to the boil and season with salt. Once the water is rapidly boiling, carefully drop in the sprout leaves and allow to cook for 1 minute.
    3. Drain from the water and plunge into ice water to stop the cooking.
    4. Once cooled, drain off and place onto a towel to dry.
    5. Cut the chestnuts into quarters and keep in a separate bowl.
    6. Mix the Dijon mustard together with the vinegar and oil to create a light vinaigrette dressing. Keep to one side

    Roasted Pheasant Crown:

    1. Pre-heat your oven to 160°C.
    2. Heat a thickbased frying pan and drizzle with oil, season the pheasant with salt and colour all over the breast.
    3. Add the butter, thyme and garlic and start to baste when it starts foaming.
    4. Sit the bird up in the pan and cook in the oven for 8-10 minutes or until the thick part of the breast reaches 55°C.
    5. Remove the bird from the pan and rest in a warm area for 10-15 minutes.
    6. Take the garlic and thyme out of the frying pan and return to a medium heat.
    7. Add the bacon and begin to fry to a deep, golden-brown colour.
    8. Once the bacon has fried and is becoming crispy, add the chestnuts and fry for 1 more minute.
    9. Add the sprouts (both the blanched leaves and the shredded inners) and cook for a further 1 minute.
    10. Remove from the heat and dress generously with the vinaigrette and season well.

    Cranberry Ketchup:

    1. Combine all ingredients in the pan and add a small splash of water.
    2. Cover with a lid or clingfilm and bring to the boil.
    3. Remove the lid and allow to cool down and start to slightly caramelise.
    4. Blitz to a smooth purée and season.
    5. Allow to chill before use.


    1. Check the seasoning of the salad and spoon around a large bowl.
    2. Use a sharp knife to cut along each side of the breast bone of the pheasant.
    3. Carefully work your way down to remove the breast as one.
    4. Season with sea salt and place on top of the sprouts.
    5. Finish with a large spoon of the cranberry ketchup


  5. Tips for Flippin’ great Pancakes

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    It was such a treat to visit Michelin-starred chef Paul Foster at his restaurant Salt which lies in the beautiful and historic town of Stratford-Upon-Avon, a stones throw from the hustle and bustle of the town centre. Salt opened its doors in March of 2017 and within a year and a half had received a Michelin star, the first ever for the town.

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    At the beginning of 2020, they opened Salt Cookery School located in the stunning and wonderfully bright space above the restaurant. This is where we met Paul and cookery school leader Brett Connor and it provided the perfect background for photographing the three pancake recipes they have so generously shared with us.

    American Style Pancakes with Smoked Steaky Bacon, Maple Syrup and Banana

    Crêpes and Caramelised Orange Sauce

    Smoked Salmon Blini’s, Dill Creme Fraiche and Caviar

    Our aim of the day, to see our pans in action, capture some photos of Paul using our stainless steel tri-ply range and get some top pancake making tips to share with you. This stunning range of cookware is already being used by up-and-coming chefs in the cookery school kitchen at Salt.

    American Style Pancakes

    About the ingredients:

    Most American style pancake recipes include buttermilk, but why buttermilk specifically? 

    The acid in the buttermilk brings more flavour and greater rise so that when it reacts with the baking soda it yields that extra fluff we expect when making American pancakes. What about substituting the buttermilk for something else? The two commonly used substitutes are plain yogurt with a touch of vinegar or lemon juice but Paul and Brett both think this will change the final flavour of the pancakes and make them more acidic.

    Clarified butter is used for frying the pancakes, but what is it?

    Often used in Indian cooking it’s the clear oil that is generated when butter is slowly melted allowing the milk solids to separate from the transparent golden liquid. Cooking with clarified butter has a few benefits for example you can cook at higher temperatures without it burning. Milk solids, which are separated off when making clarified butter, are what cause butter to smoke and burn whilst cooking. They also cause the butter to spoil or become rancid so clarifying it will make it last longer. In the restaurant they tend to make their own because it’s more cost effective, but they also use salted butter in all their recipes.

    Paul loves his Salt, they use salted butter for everything in their restaurant, hence the name of the restaurant.


    How much milk you use can vary based on the flour you have, or even on the day, given that the moisture content in the flour can fluctuate on a day-to-day basis. You don’t want to overwork the batter, so minimize the amount of mixing you do. It should drop out of the ladle when poured and fall nicely like a cake batter would.

    When & how to flip:

    They used a spatula to turn these pancakes.

    It’s time to turn the pancake over when it’s nearly set on the top and a nice golden brown on the bottom so have a peak by lifting the pancake slightly with a spatula/turner. You don’t want the batter too runny before turning them.

    Top tips:

    Paul used a smaller ProWare Stainless Steel Tri-ply 20cm non-stick frying pan, because this way you can fill it, so one pancake per pan. Make sure not to heat the pan too high. A good, gentle, medium heat will do. If your pan is too hot the pancake will brown too quickly. They preheated the pans gently with a touch of clarified butter before adding the batter.

    Serving the pancakes:

    American pancakes wouldn’t seem the same without copious amounts of bacon and maple syrup.

    They source their bacon from Aubrey Allen Wholesalers, based in Leamington Spa. Paul explained the best bacon comes from Suffolk due to the vast amount of flat land they have. They used a delicious smoky streaky variety.


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    About the ingredients: 

    Dark rumAny dark rum will due that you have to hand such as Captain Morgan’s.


    When putting it into the pan always start with less than you think you’ll need as with crêpes a little batter goes a long way. You can always fill in any holes as you go with a touch more batter if needed.

    When & how to flip:

    Usually you can toss crêpes, however there was one pancake that it was clear it just wasn’t going to work for. The crêpe needs to move around the pan before you can flip it, so pick up the frying pan by the handle and see if it loosens in one piece and moves freely around the pan. If you can do this then just go for it and give it a toss! If not, resort to turning these ones with a spatula or turner.

    Top tips:

    Paul used a large ProWare Stainless Steel Tri-ply Proware Stainless Steel Tri-Ply 28cm Non-Stick Frying Pan gently heated over a medium heat with a touch of clarified butter moving around the pan, then using some kitchen roll make sure there isn’t too much excess butter before adding the batter.

    For the orange sauce, Paul used a large ProWare 28cm stainless steel interior pan for this as non-stick is not needed. We took some great bubbling photos of them reducing this on the hob.

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    Serving the crêpes:

    Paul and Brett suggest putting the crêpes in the pan to soak up the juice before plating them then pour a little extra juice over top.

    In the restaurant they make all their own ice cream, however for this recipe they used Jude’s vanilla ice cream. Brett also mentioned how good the Jude’s vegan ice cream is too. You can’t even tell it’s vegan.


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    About the ingredients: 

    Are you slightly daunted as to what type of caviar to use? Don’t worry, any will do! Lumpfish or Harrods if you can splurge to it. Also a good budget variety is smoked herring row, which isn’t actually eggs, but made from fish milt and often referred to as soft roe rather than hard roe.


    Use straight away after mixing so that the batter stays aerated. The amount of batter for each blini is about the size of a 50 pence piece. It will spread out slightly from this as it cooks.

    When & how to flip: 

    It’s a good idea to pipe the blini’s in the shape of a clock face so that you can tell which one you did first and therefore you know which one to flip first. They used a spatula to flip the blini’s.

    Top tips:

    These are best made in a ProWare medium sized Stainless Steel Tri-ply 24cm non-stick frying pan using the same medium heat as previous pancake recipes to ensure they don’t brown too quickly although this time you add a touch more oil or butter to the pan for frying.

    If you pipe the mixture into the pan it yields neater blini’s, however you can spoon them in as well, they just aren’t as consistent. 

    Serving the blini’s:

    You can prep the blini’s ahead of time and warm them slightly in the oven before serving.


  6. Crêpes and Caramelised Orange Sauce by Paul Foster

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    Traditional French crêpes are given a beautiful twist by chef Paul Foster when he pours over a delightful caramelised orange sauce. This is the perfect crêpe recipe! A fragrant and truly delicious dessert. Keep it quiet though, these are only for grown ups!

    Recipe Courtesy of Paul Foster owner of Salt Restaurant

    Tips on how to make the perfect pancake click HERE

    Serves: 4

    Preparation Time: 10 minutes

    Cooking Time: 30 minutes



    Crêpes Batter:

    • 165g Plain Flour
    • 3 Medium Eggs
    • 400ml Whole Milk
    • 1 tablespoon Soft Light Brown Sugar

    Caramelised Orange Sauce:

    • 1 Large Orange – Zested and Juiced
    • 50g Dark Brown Sugar
    • 50g Caster Sugar
    • 30g Salted Butter
    • 25ml Dark Rum
    • 2 Star Anise

    Cooking Method


    1. In a mixing bowl, mix the flour, sugar and eggs to a smooth paste.
    2. Slowly add the milk and mix to a smooth batter.
    3. Heat a large ProWare non-stick frying pan over a moderate heat.
    4. Add a little oil and wipe out with a cloth.
    5. Add a ladle of batter to create a thin layer across the entire pan.
    6. Allow to cook on each side for 3 minutes or until fully cooked through.

    Caramelised Orange Sauce:

    1. In a small stainless steel interior frying pan, dissolve both sugars in a little water and cook until caramelised (around 160ºC).
    2. Add the Rum, Star Anise and orange juice and bring back to the boil, once all of the sugar has become a liquid reduce down to a slightly thicker consistency.
    3. Take off the heat and whisk in the butter, finish with the orange zest.

    To serve:

    1. Fold the Crêpes into quarters and heat through the sauce. Serve immediately with a generous scoop of Vanilla Ice Cream.

  7. Smoked Salmon Blini, Dill Crème Fraiche and Caviar by Paul Foster

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    These smoked salmon blinis from chef Paul Foster are perfect as a starter. A savoury fluffy pancake topped with fragrant dill crème fraiche topped with a little caviar for an elegant flourish. Small but truly delicious!

    Recipe Courtesy of Paul Foster owner of Salt Restaurant

    Tips on how to make the perfect pancake click HERE

    Serves: 4

    Preparation Time: 10 minutes

    Cooking Time: 15 minutes



    Blini Batter:

    • 150g Plain Flour
    • 2 Teaspoon Baking Powder
    • 3 Medium Eggs
    • 60g Milk
    • ½ Teaspoon Salt
    • 100g Clarified Butter (for cooking)

    To serve:

    • 100g sliced Smoked Salmon
    • 1 tub Crème Fraiche
    • Fresh Dill
    • 1 Lemon
    • 1 Tub Caviar

    Cooking Method

    Blini Batter:

    1. In a mixing bowl, sift the flour, baking powder and salt together.
    2. Add the eggs and mix to a smooth paste.
    3. Slowly add the milk and mix to a smooth batter. Use immediately.
    4. Heat a large ProWare non-stick frying pan over a moderate heat and add a small amount of the clarified butter.
    5. Carefully spoon a small amount of batter into the pan to create a small round pancake, (using a piping bag will make a rounder consistent pancake).
    6. Repeat this process around the outside of the pan in a clockwise direction.
    7. After 1-2 minutes of cooking, flip the blini over to continue cooking on the other side for a further 1-2 minutes.
    8. Repeat this process clockwise, starting with the first blini that was spooned into the pan.

    Dill Crème Fraiche

    1. Finely chop the dill.
    2. Place the Crème Fraiche into a mixing bowl and start to whip.
    3. Add a pinch of salt and a squeeze of lemon juice to taste.
    4. Add the chopped dill and return to the fridge for an hour before use.

    To serve:

    Tear a good slice of smoked salmon and place on top of the Blini, spoon on a generous amount of crème fraiche and a generous amount of Caviar. Garnish with a picked sprig of Dill and serve.

  8. North-American Style Pancakes with Smoked Streaky Bacon, Maple Syrup and Banana by Paul Foster

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    We are thrilled to share this recipe for North-American Style Pancakes. They are fluffy and light and topped with crispy bacon, banana and a generous drizzle of maple syrup, just how they should be!

    Recipe Courtesy of Paul Foster owner of Salt Restaurant

    Tips on how to make the perfect pancake click HERE

    Serves: 4

    Preparation Time: 10 minutes

    Cooking Time: 30 minutes



    • 270g Plain Flour
    • 10g Bicarbonate of soda
    • 30g Salted Butter – Melted
    • 2 Tablespoons Soft Light Brown Sugar
    • 150ml Whole Milk
    • 150ml Buttermilk
    • 2 Medium Eggs
    • 8 Rashers of Smoked Streaky Bacon
    • 100% Maple Syrup
    • 1 Banana
    • 100g Clarified Butter

    Cooking Method

    Pancake Batter:

    1. Gently melt the butter over a low heat in a small sauce pan.
    2. Sift the flour, sugar and Bi Carbonate of soda together into a mixing bowl.
    3. Add the eggs and start to mix to a paste with a whisk, slowly add the milk, mixing to incorporate all of the ingredients.
    4. Once all of the ingredients are mixed and a smooth batter, whisk in the melted butter. Leave the mix to stand for a few minutes before using.
    5. Gently heat your ProWare 20cm non-stick frying pan over a moderate heat.
    6. Add a small amount of the clarified butter and ladle in the mix to cover the entire base of the pan.
    7. Cook for 2-3 minutes on one side and then flip and cook for a further minute.

    Streaky Bacon:

    1. Pre-heat your oven to 200ºC/400ºF/Gas Mark 6.
    2. Line a tray with some tin foil and lie the rashers of back on there.
    3. Bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes until crispy. Alternatively, you can grill the rashers of bacon until crispy.

    To serve:

    1. Peel and slice the banana, stack the warm pancakes and top with the hot crispy bacon, top with a few slices of banana and drizzle generously with Maple Syrup.