Posted on March 12th, 2017 No comments
Frank made this loaf for Sunday lunch last weekend. The recipe’s from Anna Jones in The Guardian. You might expect the loaf to be bright pink. It was before it went into the oven but oddly, once baked, it turned to a more palatable shade of yellow! Whatever the colour it tasted great.
Makes 1 x 750g loaf
300g cooked beetroot, chopped
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp caraway seeds
100ml buttermilk (or plain yoghurt let down with a splash of milk)
200g white spelt flour
200g wholemeal spelt flour
50g pumpkin seeds, plus more for sprinkling
1 tsp salt
2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
Preheat the oven to 220°C/gas mark 7. Put the beetroot (see the note below if you’re roasting your own), spices and buttermilk in a food processor and puree until smooth.
Put the flours, pumpkin seeds, salt, bicarbonate of soda and pepper into a large bowl and mix well. Pour the beetroot mixture into the flours and mix with a fork until well combined, then use your hands to gently bring the lot into a rough ball. Don’t knead it though, or it will make the finished loaf tough.
Scatter some flour over a baking sheet and put your ball of dough on top. Dust with a little more flour and a few more pumpkin seeds. Cut a deep cross in the bread, then bake for 30 – 40 minutes until golden and risen.
Remove from the oven and tap the bottom of the loaf. If you get a hollow sound, it’s perfect, so pop it on a wire rack to cool. This is delicious warm with salted or almond butter.
If you are roasting the beetroot yourself
Wash the beetroot well and trim off the stalks. Place the whole beetroot in a foil parcel, wrapped really tightly so the steam doesn’t escape. Cook for around an hour (depending on the size of your beetroot) until tender. Once cooked, allow to cool in the foil parcel, this will make it really easy to remove the skins. When cool enough to handle slip the skins off and discard. Extra roasted beetroot can be used in salads or alongside dips such as hummus.
Posted on September 6th, 2016 No comments
This delicious recipe, featured in The Guardian recently, is by Rachel Roddy. I served it with feta cheese crumbled over the top.
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 15-20 minutes
250g dried chickpeas, soaked and cooked, or 400g tinned chickpeas, drained
12 cherry tomatoes
6 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
2 garlic cloves
salt and black pepper
A handful of parsley, chopped
juice of 1/2 lemon
Ricotta, feta, goat’s cheese, lamb chops, or a poached egg, to serve
Wash the chard and cut the stems from the leaves, trimming tough ends and pulling away any stringy bits. Cut the stems into short lengths, then roll the leaves into cigars and chop roughly.
Bring a large pan of water to the boil, add salt. Add the stems for 1-2 minutes, then add the leaves for a few minutes more or until tender. Drain.
Warm the olive oil over a medium-low heat. Peel and crush the garlic for a milder flavour, or slice for a stronger hit. Add to the pan with the cherry tomatoes. Fry, squashing the tomatoes gently with the back of a spoon, until they are soft and the oil is tinted red. Add the chard and stir until it glistens with oil, add the chickpeas and cook for a few minutes more.
Remove from the heat, add the parsley, lemon juice, salt and pepper, then let it sit for a while. Before serving, check seasoning, and pour over a little more oil.
Posted on February 14th, 2016 No comments
We have spring onions and home-grown bean sprouts in this week’s veg boxes. My husband Frank adapted Felicity Cloake’s perfect pad thai recipe as we were lacking several other ingredients! If you haven’t got palm sugar he recommends using soft brown sugar. If you want a vegetarian pad thai just leave out the prawns.
120g 2-3mm wide flat rice noodles
60ml fish sauce
60ml tamarind water (you can use tamarind concentrate, thinned with a little water)
60g palm sugar
Pinch of chilli powder, to taste
80ml groundnut or vegetable oil
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
100g firm tofu, chopped into small cubes
8 large prawns
2 large eggs, beaten with 1 tsp sesame oil
1 bunch spring onions, chopped
50g roasted peanuts, roughly chopped, lime wedges, chilli flakes, fish sauce and sugar, to garnish
Cook the rice noodles as directed on the packet until pliable but al dente. Drain and rinse with cold water.
Meanwhile, make the sauce by combining the fish sauce, tamarind and palm sugar in a small pan. Heat gently to dissolve the sugar and taste – add more of any of the ingredients as you wish. Season with chilli to taste and set aside.
Lay out all the ingredients within easy reach of the hob in the order they’ll be used. Put a wok on a high heat and add half the oil. Add the beaten egg and stir fry until cooked, remove from the pan. Add the rest of the oil and the garlic and spring onions, stir fry for a few seconds. Add the prawns, stir fry until they are starting to turn pink, then add the beansprouts and tofu and stir fry for 30 seconds or so.
Add the noodles, the cooked egg and the sauce, then stir until heated through and the noodles are soft enough to eat. Serve with the garnishes for people to add as they wish.
Posted on February 7th, 2016 No comments
This recipe is taken from The Guardian in Nigel Slater’s midweek dinner series. I changed the quantities slightly as I find Nigel often uses too much cream for my tastes, missed out the dill as I didn’t have any and cut down on the amount of sausage. Still tasted good though!
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
6 butchers sausages
1-2 tsp dried chilli flakes
2 heaped tsp chopped fresh dill
1-2 leeks, sliced into 1 cm discs
2 Tbsp olive oil
150 g tagliatelle
100 ml double cream
salt and pepper
a handful of chopped fresh parsley
Remove the sausage meat from the skins, place in a mixing bowl and mix with the chilli flakes and dill. Divide the mixture into small balls (I aim to get 4 balls from each sausage) and flatten slightly. Warm the olive oil in a shallow pan. Brown the balls on both sides then leave over a low heat, covered, until cooked right through – about 4-5 minutes.
Remove the balls from the pan, then add the leeks and let them cook in the pan juices for 7-8 minutes until soft and tender. Meanwhile, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil, cook the tagliatelle until tender, then drain.
Stir the cream into the leeks, season with salt, pepper and parsley then add the drained pasta to the leeks. Return the sausage balls to the pan and let everything bubble for a minute or so, then serve.
Posted on January 30th, 2016 1 comment
800g peeled and seeded pumpkin or squash
2 carrots, about 200g, peeled
4 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
400g tin of plum tomatoes
100g red lentils
small bunch of coriander
Heat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6. Cut the squash and carrots into chunks about 4 cm square and toss with a little oil. Spread out on a baking sheet and cook for about 30 minutes until tender and very slightly charred.
Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large saucepan over a medium-low heat and cook the onion until soft, golden and beginning to caramelise. Stir in half a teaspoon of paprika and cook for another minute or so, then tip in the tomatoes and mash up. Stir in the lentils and about a litre of water and bring to the boil, then turn down the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, until the lentils are soft.
Add the roasted vegetables to the pan and take off the heat. Whisk together the remaining teaspoon of paprika with the remaining tablespoon of oil and a pinch of salt. Puree the soup and season to taste, adding a little more water if you prefer it thinner. Roughly chop the coriander. Divide between bowls and drizzle over the paprika oil. Top with coriander and serve.