Impressive dishes to wow your friends and family in no time at all. James makes a zingy lemon posset and beer braised beef cheeks that melt in your mouth. He is joined by special guest Carol Kirkwood.
Tandoori chicken lollipop drumsticks with raita dip
These spiced chicken bites make delicious meaty canapés – pass them around at a party and watch them disappear.
Layered sole with langoustines and cauliflower
This super-impressive fish dish pairs delicate lemon sole with earthy cauliflower and sweet langoustines
Lemon posset with gran’s shortbread
Creamy lemon posset is always a winner, and this version pairs the zingy lemon with fresh fruit and rich shortbread.
For the posset, bring the cream and sugar to the boil in a saucepan. Remove the pan from the heat, then whisk in the lemon zest and juice, whisking as much air into the mixture as possible. Pour the posset mixture into ramekins and chill in the fridge for 1 hour, or until set. Once set, decorate the tops with strawberries, figs and mint sprigs.
For the shortbread, preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. Mix the plain flour, icing sugar, ground almonds and cornflour together into a bowl. Rub the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs, then gently bring the mixture together as a dough.
Divide the dough into 24 small, equal-sized balls and press one into each well of a 24-hole silicone fairy cake mould (or two 12-hole ones). Alternatively roll out the dough to about 1cm/½in thick and use a small biscuit cutter to cut out shapes. Bake the shortbreads in the oven for 10-12 minutes, or until pale golden-brown.
While the shortbreads bake, bring the jam to the boil in a saucepan with 50ml/2fl oz water. Reduce the heat and simmer for 2-3 minutes, or until the mixture resembles a thick syrup. Remove the shortbread from the oven and, when cool enough to handle but still malleable, make a small dent in the centre of each with your finger. Spoon the warm strawberry syrup into the dent in each shortbread, then remove them from the moulds and set aside to cool on a wire rack. Serve the shortbread alongside the lemon possets.
Pearl barley risotto with beer-braised beef cheeks and onions
Try this hearty dish in the slow-cooker – start it off in the morning and it will be fall-apart tender by dinner time.