Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Random Recipe Challenge / Orange And Peach Filo Parcels

Hello! Hello! It's been quite busy here at home for me. I'm glad to be able to participate with this month's challenge. Dom from Belleau Kitchen have got us going again with Random Recipe Challenge that he hosts every month. We are to choose a random cookbook and open a random page and create the recipe. I gave my sweet boy the honour of choosing the book since he's not able to read as of yet. The cookbook he pulled out from our mini library is The Secret Ingredient by Sally Bee.

Sally Bee is a mother of 3 children, a wife, a writer and a TV presenter. At 36 years of age she suffered 3 massive heart attacks all within a weeks time. She lives a healthy lifestyle and has no history of heart disease and neither does the rest of her family. So, it was a surprise to her, her family, and doctors when it happened. Her story has touched me in a very personal way. I felt how she was feeling when she was telling  her story and while she was slipping away at the hospital, except it wasn't my heart It was my lungs. She is a living miracle as there is no cure for what she has. She tries to live a full life and be as healthy as she possibly can be. This was the cookbook I mentioned in my previous post that I found on the clearance table. I would've gladly paid retail for it. It's full of healthy recipes that she prepares for herself and family. My sweet boy opened the book to a random page. The kiddies eyes grew with delight when the page opened and they saw a photo of an Orange and Peach Filo Parcels. They were quite excited that we took our book with us to the supermarket and got all of our ingredients.

This recipe is quite easy but I've never worked with filo pastry before. I started out calm and collected then when it came to the part I had to separate the filo's to brush some oil on them, it kept breaking to pieces. The first filo I didn't mind breaking since I was learning how to handle them. Then the second one broke as well, I was still alright thinking to myself I'll get the third one right. They crumbled again!! It was 6 filo pastry I've broken! My face started to change and my forehead began to develop lines which looked like I'm in need of botox! I was having a kitchen nightmare with such a simple recipe. Don't get me wrong its not her recipe its me and my war with the filo pastry! "Oh its on baby!" The hubs wondered what the heck was going on in the kitchen! I had to ask my sweet boy/sous chef that mummy had to do this one alone for the sake of all the filo's I'm about to wrestle with. Didn't want him to see me sweating over thin little papers... lol. Finally!! The seventh filo didn't break I was very careful with them until I had to put them in the ramekins! They started cracking again! I could not get it nice and pretty as her photo and how she suggested to place them in the ramekins and twist the top of the filo so that it wraps the filling inside. I started pushing them in the ramekins and wrapping it like a burrito as they kept breaking and drying.

This was a definite Recipe Challenge for me....I tried to keep the filo's from drying by rolling the plastic back on the and covering it with a cloth but I'm guessing its the hot temperature and zero humidity we have here. I don't know it's my first filo experience. At the end of it all we had a delicious treat to eat and everyone was happy : )

This is what it looked like taken out of the ramekin. It's meant to look like a parcel with the top looking like a Victorian ladies draw string purse. Not even close...I shall keep trying and master how to work with a filo dough.

She's inspired me to live a full and healthier life for myself and my family and I shall try to cook a much healthier meals for us.


3 oranges
3 peaches and nectarines
2 tbsp maple syrup
50ml/2fl oz/1/4 cup water
1 tbsp light olive oil
12 sheets filo pastry, each cut 18cm/7in squares
icing (confectioners) sugar to dust
6 x 9cm 3 1/2 in diameter ramekin dishes (I've used the only kind I got, not sure what size it is)

Makes 6 Parcels


1. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas mark 6.

2. Using a small knife, remove the peel and pith from the orange and cut in between each segment.

3. Wash and slice the peaches into small pieces as the orange segments.

4. Put the fruit, maple syrup and water into a large pan and simmer over a medium heat for 3 minutes.      Remove from heat and strain over a jug, saving the juices for later. Lightly oil the ramekins.

5. Brush one of the filo squares with a little oil then lay another square on top and brush again. Turn over so that the greased side is facing down then gently push the double filo squares into the ramekins,

6. Repeat with the remaining pastry to line the remaining ramekins.

7. Divide the fruit among the ramekins. Gather up the filo edges and twist together lightly seal. Transfer ramekins to a non-stick baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until crisp and golden.

8. While your parcels are cooking pour the juices into a small saucepan and simmer until reduced by half.

9. When the parcels are cooked, remove from the ramekins and put onto plates. Dust with icing sugar and serve with the reduced juice poured over.



  1. You are so inspirational!... this is such a great post and I so pleased you went through with it to the end, the filo parcels look stunning! Thanks so much for entering this month and that you for introducing me to such a wonderful new book! x

    1. Awww, thank you Dom. That's what the whole thing is about is to challenge ourselves isn't it? I'm happy that you have challenges like this for us. It inspires me to get out of my comfort zone. : )

  2. This sounds like an inspirational book full of goodies. Is it just desserts or a mixture of all sorts? It's hard to think what Sally's been through. One of my ex boyfriends had a heart attack at 29 which came out of nowhere too. It shook him up so much he had to go on anti-depressants after as he was terrified of going through it again.

    I've never tried filo pastry but it sounds like a whole lot of hard work. I can imagine it's hard to work with anything with no humidity. I think they look great though anyway. You're too hard on yourself. If it were me, I would of had a giant temper tantrum and threw them across the room! LOL.

    Sweet 2 Eat Baking

    1. Hi Lisa! It is inspirational and its not just desserts. There's all sorts of yummy dishes. That's such a scary experience your friend had gone through. I hope he's doing much better. As for the filo pastry trust me I wanted to do that but had to keep my decorum since the kiddies were in the kitchen watching me Lol. I did whisper sorts of things though LOL!!

  3. They look like great little parcels. I've used filo many times now but I do remember that it seemed so difficult on the first few attempts. It does get easier, I promise. To be honest, it's a lot easier on a rainy, cool day.

    1. Hi Phil! : ) Thank You! I shall attempt to work with them more to get the hang of it. Oh how I would love a rainy cool day. We've had crazy dust storms and maybe a couple of rain but just for like a few minutes.

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  5. YUm YUM YUM!! and I have the book!!! its just fantastaic - your dessert looks delectable :)
    Mary x

    1. Hi Mary! Thank you! :) Have you cooked any of her recipes yet?

  6. What an amazing story. Filo is a pain to work with - keeping it under a damp teatowel helps - but it's totally worth it!

  7. Hi! Thank you for popping by and yes her story is amazing. I'm going to have to go by your tip with the tea towel that should certainly keep it from drying :)

  8. The damp tea towel works well for me too!

    I love your presentation, wouldn't worry at all about the lack of draw string purse look!!!

    This book sounds really interesting.

    1. Aw thank you : ) I'm going to do that next time. The book really is interesting.

  9. this dessert looks just so delicious. I need to try this. Great tips on how to make them.

  10. I didn't enter this challenge, but your parcels look pretty good to me. Might have to look out for this book, and give this a try.


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