We're growing our own food!
Home icon RSS icon
  • Seasonal local food recipe No.378 – Ottolenghi’s swede, bacon and walnut gratin

    Posted on January 22nd, 2018 charlotte No comments

    The humble “neep” of traditional Burns Night fame takes on a posh new identity in this Yotam Ottolenghi dish. The secret is the sage and the walnuts. Served with a green salad, it’s awesome! I used fromage frais instead of double cream and left out the salt. Yotam says: “It also works without the bacon, if you want to make it vegetarian.”

    Serves 6 as main course, 8 as a side

    swede-camelcsa-011009Preparation time: 10 minutes
    Cooking time: one hour 15 minutes (mostly oven)

    25g unsalted butter
    1 large onion, thinly sliced (200g net weight)
    200g smoked bacon lardons
    10g sage leaves, finely shredded
    300ml double cream
    400ml vegetable stock
    1½ tbsp dijon mustard
    2 large swedes, peeled, cut in half and then into 3-4mm-thick slices (1.4kg)
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    40g mature cheddar, coarsely grated
    40g walnut halves, roughly chopped

    Heat the oven to 200C/390F/gas mark 6. Put the butter in a large, 28cm-diameter pot on a medium-high heat. Once it starts to foam, add the onion and bacon, and fry, stirring frequently, for seven to eight minutes, until the onions are soft and the bacon is cooked. Stir in half the sage, the cream, stock, mustard, swede, half a teaspoon of salt and plenty of pepper, bring to a boil, then turn down the heat to medium and leave to simmer for five minutes, stirring every now and then.

    Spoon the swedes into a high-sided, 20cm x 30cm ovenproof dish, and pour all the pan juices and bacon bits over the top. Press the swedes down into the dish, and if need be move the slices around, so they’re evenly layered, then roast for 40 minutes, basting and pressing down once more halfway through.

    While the gratin is cooking, mix the cheddar with the walnuts and remaining sage. When the 40 minutes are up, sprinkle the cheddar mix all over the gratin and bake for a further 15-20 minutes, until the gratin is dark golden brown and bubbling, and leave to rest for 10 minutes before serving.

  • Seasonal local food recipe No.342 – Braised squash with chickpeas and harissa

    Posted on November 20th, 2016 Janet No comments

    Don’t be put off by the rather long list of ingredients, the result is very tasty.  I was a bit dubious about the dried apricots and was pleased to be proved wrong.  I have given you Frank, my husband’s, version of Yotam Ottolenghi’s original recipe.  We didn’t have preserved lemon skin so Frank substituted grated lemon zest and the juice of half a lemon.

    Serves 4p1070889

    Preparation time: 15 minutes
    Cooking time: 45 minutes

    2 Tbsp olive oil
    2-3 banana shallots, peeled and chopped
    1 garlic clove, peeled and thinly sliced
    1 tsp ground cumin
    4 whole cardamom pods, crushed to release the seeds, pods discarded
    salt and black pepper
    2 1/2 Tbsp harissa paste
    1/2 tsp rose water
    500 ml vegetable stock
    1 large butternut squash, peeled and cut into 4 cm dice
    400 g tinned, cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed
    7 dried apricots, thinly sliced
    20 g preserved lemon skin, roughly chopped
    10 g coriander leaves, roughly chopped
    150 g Greek yoghurt

    In a large saute pan for which you have a lid, heat the oil on a medium-high flame.  Add the shallots and fry for 7-8 minutes, stirring every so often, until soft and caramelised, then stir in the garlic, spices, half a teaspoon of salt and plenty of pepper, and fry for 2 minutes longer.

    Add the harissa, rose water and stock, bring to a boil, then add the chickpeas, apricots and lemon and leave to simmer for 20 minutes. Add the squash and simmer until the squash is tender, adding a little more water if necessary.  Sprinkle with the coriander and serve with some yoghurt alongside.

  • Seasonal local food recipe No.327 – Yotam’s roast cauliflower with chorizo and green olives

    Posted on June 19th, 2016 charlotte No comments

    This is a really tasty side dish from food guru Yotam Ottolenghi in his Easy Ottolenghi series in The Guardian. For a change he’s cut back on his usual long list of ingredients!

    He says: “I’ve been using chorizo a lot recently, as a quick way to add intensity to all sorts of vegetable dishes, but this also works very well without it; if you do leave it out, increase the paprika to about a tablespoon.”

    cauliflower-chorizo-greenolives-prepped-camelcsa-160616Serves: four to six as a side dish

    Preparation time: 10 minutes
    Cooking time: 25-30 minutes

    1 large cauliflower (1kg), trimmed and separated into 3-4cm florets
    150g cooking chorizo, skinned and cut into 2cm pieces
    2 red onions, peeled and cut into 2cm wedges
    30g pitted green olives, torn in half
    2 tsp sweet smoked paprika
    roasted-cauliflower-chorizo-greenolives-camelcsa-16061630g pumpkin seeds
    2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
    3 tbsp olive oil
    Flaked sea salt and black pepper
    20g parsley leaves, roughly chopped

    Heat the oven to 220C/425F/gas mark 7. Put everything bar the parsley in a bowl with a teaspoon and a half of salt and a good grind of pepper. Mix well to combine, then spread out on a 30cm x 40cm baking tray lined with greaseproof paper.

    Roast for 25-30 minutes, stirring gently halfway through, until the chorizo is cooked and the cauliflower is soft and browned. Leave to cool down for about 10 minutes, stir in the parsley and serve.

  • Seasonal local food recipe No.265 – Yotam’s mustardy cauliflower cheese

    Posted on March 1st, 2015 Janet No comments

    A neat take on a classic. This recipe from Yotam Ottolenghi in The Guardian is recommended by CSA members Charlotte Barry and Alex and Jeremy Simmons.  The lentils are described as a really positive addition and cooking them from scratch will mean they are less mushy.  I’m looking forward to trying it tomorrow.

    Serves 4cauliflower-camel csa 21-08-09

    Preparation time: 30 minutes
    Cooking time: 12-14 minutes

    50g puy lentils
    1 large cauliflower, separated into 4cm florets
    2 tbsp ghee
    2 banana shallots, peeled and diced fine
    1½ tsp cumin seeds
    1 tsp curry powder
    1 tsp mustard powder
    2 green chillis, deseeded and finely diced
    1 tsp black mustard seeds
    200ml double cream
    90g mature cheddar, grated
    15g parmesan, grated
    15g panko breadcrumbs
    5g parsley, finely chopped

    Heat the oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4. Tip the lentils into a small pan filled with boiling water and simmer for 18 minutes, until al dente. Drain, refresh and leave to drip-dry. Steam the cauliflower over boiling water for five minutes, until just softening, remove and set aside.

    Melt the ghee in a round, 24cm ovenproof casserole pan on a medium heat, and sauté the shallots for eight minutes, until soft and golden. Add the cumin, curry and mustard powders, and chilli, and cook for five minutes, stirring occasionally.

    Add the mustard seeds, cook for a minute, then stir in the cream, 80g of the cheddar, all the parmesan and half a teaspoon of salt. Simmer for a minute or two, so the sauce thickens slightly, then add the lentils and cauliflower. Stir gently, simmer for a minute more, then take off the heat.

    In a small bowl, mix the panko, remaining cheddar and parsley. Sprinkle over the cauliflower, then bake for eight minutes, until bubbling and hot. Brown under a high grill for two to four minutes, until the top is golden and crisp (watch that it doesn’t burn). Remove, leave to cool down slightly and serve.

  • Seasonal local food recipe No.261 – Yotam’s roasted chicken with Jerusalem artichoke and lemon

    Posted on January 31st, 2015 Janet No comments

    If you don’t know what to do with Jerusalem artichokes try this dish.  You need to prepare it ahead of time as it requires at least 2 hours marinating in the fridge though overnight is better.  It is taken from Yotam Ottolenghi’s book Jerusalem and he suggests serving it with mejadra, a rice and lentil dish, though this weekend we are going to try it with new potatoes and a green salad.

    Serves 4P1050590

    Preparation time: 30-40 minutes
    Cooking time: 45 minutes

    450g Jerusalem artichokes, peeled and cut into 1.5 cm wedges lengthways
    3 Tbs lemon juice
    8 chicken thighs
    12 banana shallots, peeled and cut in half lengthways
    12 large garlic cloves, sliced
    1 lemon, cut in half lengthways and then thinly sliced
    1 tsp saffron threads
    50ml olive oil
    150ml cold water
    1 1/2 Tbs pink peppercorns, slightly crushed
    10g fresh thyme leaves
    40g tarragon leaves, chopped
    2 tsp salt
    1/2 tsp black pepper

    Put the Jerusalem artichokes in a pan, cover with plenty of water and half the lemon juice,  Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 10-20 minutes, until tender but not soft.  Drain and leave to cool.

    Place the Jerusalem artichokes and all the remaining ingredients, excluding the remaining lemon juice and half the tarragon in a large mixing bowl and use your hands to mix everything together well.  Cover and leave to marinate in the fridge overnight, or for at least 2 hours.

    Preheat the oven to 240°C/ Gas Mark 9.  Arrange the chicken pieces, skin-side up in the centre of a roasting tin and spread the remaining ingredients around the chicken.  Roast for 30 minutes.  Cover the tin with foil and cook for a further 15 minutes.  At this point the chicken should be completely cooked.  Remove from the oven and add the reserved tarragon and lemon juice.  Stir well, season to taste and serve.

  • Seasonal local food recipe No.256 – Yotam’s cauliflower cake

    Posted on December 22nd, 2014 Janet No comments

    I cooked this cauliflower cake at the weekend.  It was rather time consuming to prepare but it looked impressive and tasted good!  I served it with a green salad. It’s from Yotam Ottolenghi’s newest book Plenty More.

    Serves: 4-6yotam-ottolenghi-cauliflower-cake-camelcsa

    Preparation time: 1 hour
    Cooking time: 45 minutes

    1 small cauliflower, broken into 3 cm florets
    salt and black pepper
    1 medium red onion, peeled
    75 ml olive oil
    1/2 tsp finely chopped rosemary
    7 eggs
    cauliflower-camelcsa-16031215g basil, chopped
    120g plain flour
    1 1/2 tsp baking powder
    1/3 tsp ground turmeric
    150g coarsely grated parmesan
    melted butter, to grease the tin
    1 tbs white sesame seeds
    1 tsp nigella seeds

    Put the cauliflower florets in a pan and add a teaspoon of salt.  Cover with water, bring to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes, until they florets are quite soft.  Strain and leave in a colander to dry.

    Cut 3 or 4 round 0.5 cm slices off one end of the onion and set aside.  Coarsely chop the rest of the onion, and put in a small pan with the oil and rosemary.  Cook for 10 minutes on a medium heat, stirring from time to time, until soft, then set aside to cool.  Transfer the cooked onion to a large bowl, add the eggs and basil, whisk, then add the flour, baking powder, turmeric, cheese, a teaspoon of salt and plenty of pepper.  Whisk until smooth, then add the cauliflower and stir gently, trying not to break up all the florets.

    Line the base and sides of a 24 cm springform cake tin with baking parchment, and brush the sides with melted butter.  Mix together the sesame and nigella seeds and toss them around the inside of the tin, so they stick to the sides.  Tip in the cauliflower mix and arrange the reserved onion rings on top.  Bake in the centre of a preheated oven 200°C/Gas mark 6 for 45 minutes, until golden brown and set: a knife inserted into the middle should come out clean.

    Remove from the oven and leave for at least 20 minutes before serving; it needs to be served just warm, or at room temperature, rather than hot.

  • Seasonal local food recipe No.227 – Yotam’s baked asparagus with parmesan and poppy seeds

    Posted on May 18th, 2014 charlotte No comments

    This makes a lovely dish for a special occasion. It’s from chef Yotam Ottolenghi’s weekly series in the Guardian. You’ll need thick asparagus stems – like the Cornish asparagus we all had in last week’s vegetable boxes.
    Serves: 4

    Preparation time: 15 minutes
    Cooking time: 18 minutes

    2 large (24cm x 48cm) sheets filo pastry
    2-3 tbsp olive oil
    16 thick stemmed asparagus spears, woody stems trimmed
    1 egg, whisked
    30g parmesan, finely grated
    1½ tsp poppy seeds
    1 tsp coarse sea salt

    Heat the oven to 200C/390F/gas mark 6. Put both sheets of filo on top of each other and cut widthways across the middle. Arrange the filo into one pile, then cut the pile into four squares so you end up with 16 filo pastry squares in total.

    You will now need to work fast, otherwise the filo will dry out. Lay one filo square on a work surface and brush with plenty of olive oil. Place one asparagus spear at the bottom edge of each square, with the florets exposed, then roll in the pastry to wrap up securely – you’re aiming for a cigar shape with the asparagus head sticking out. Brush each asparagus parcel with egg and sprinkle over some parmesan, poppy seeds and salt. Place the parcel on a baking tray lined with parchment paper, and repeat with the remaining filo and asparagus.

    Bake for 18 minutes, until the pastry is crisp and the asparagus cooked through. Serve warm or at room temperature.

  • Seasonal local food recipe No 174: Chargrilled broccoli with chilli and garlic

    Posted on January 11th, 2013 Trish No comments

    Much loved by customers at Yotam Ottolenghi’s restaurant, this can be made with calabrese or purple sprouting broccoli. For extra oomph, add four chopped anchovy fillets to the chilli and garlic when cooking them in the oil.

    Serves 2-4

    Preparation and cooking 15-20 minutes

    2 heads broccoli or about 500g sprouting broccoli
    115ml olive oil
    4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
    2 mild red chillies, thinly sliced
    coarse sea salt and black pepper
    toasted flaked almonds or very thin slices of lemon (with skin) to garnish (optional)

    Prepare the broccoli by separating it into florets or cut the sprouting broccoli into small pieces if necessary. Bring a large pan of water to the boil. Throw in the broccoli and blanch for 2 minutes only. With a large slotted spoon, transfer the broccoli to a bowl full of ice-cold water. Drain in a colander and allow to dry completely. It must not be wet at all. In a mixing bowl, toss the broccoli with 45ml of the oil and a generous amount of salt and pepper.

    Place a ridged riddle pan over a high heat and leave it there for at least 5 minutes, until it is extremely hot. Depending on the size of your pan, grill the broccoli in several batches. The florets mustn’t be cramped. Turn them around as they grill so they get char marks all over. Transfer to a heatproof bowl and continue with another batch.

    While grilling the broccoli, place the rest of the oil in a small saucepan with the garlic and chillies. Cook over a medium heat until the garlic just begins to turn golden brown. Be careful not to let them burn – they will keep on cooking even when off the heat. Pour the oil, garlic and chilli over the hot broccoli and toss together well. Taste and adjust the seasoning.

    Serve warm or at room temperature. You can garnish the broccoli with almonds or lemon just before serving if you like.

    Photo and recipe from Ottolenghi: The Cookbook

  • Seasonal local food recipe No. 132: Char-grilled sprouting broccoli with sweet tahini

    Posted on February 12th, 2012 charlotte No comments

    Apologies for the lack of a recipe last week. This unusual winter salad can be made very quickly. It comes from chef Yotam Ottolenghi‘s weekly column in the Guardian. He says: “This salad is loved even by those who claim not to like tahini.”

    Serves four

    Preparation time: 10 minutes
    Cooking time: 10 minutes (at most)

    550g purple-sprouting broccoli
    1 tbsp olive oil
    Salt and black pepper
    40g tahini paste
    1½ tsp honey
    2 tsp lemon juice
    1 small garlic clove, peeled and crushed
    1 tsp each black and white sesame seeds, toasted (or just 2 tsp white)

    Trim any big leaves off the broccoli and cut off the woody base of the stems. Blanch for three minutes in boiling, salted water until al dente, refresh, drain and leave to dry.

    Toss the broccoli in the oil, a teaspoon of salt and a large pinch of pepper, then cook on a very hot ridged griddle pan for two minutes on each side, until slightly charred and smoky. Set aside to cool.

    Whisk the tahini, honey, lemon juice, garlic and a pinch of salt, and slowly start to add water half a tablespoon at a time. At first, the sauce will look as if it has split, but it will soon come back together. Add just enough water to make the sauce the consistency of honey – around three tablespoons in total.

    Arrange the broccoli on a platter, drizzle with sauce and scatter with sesame seeds. Serve at room temperature.

    More sprouting broccoli recipes from Camel CSA
    Pasta with sprouting broccoli
    Stir-fried purple sprouting broccoli

  • Stuck for a recipe idea for Jerusalem artichokes?

    Posted on March 6th, 2011 charlotte No comments

    Jerusalem artichokes are a staple item in Camel Community Supported Agriculture’s weekly veg boxes at this time of year.

    Unlike late winter brassicas, which are in short supply all over the UK, these knobbly roots seem to thrive in hard, frosty conditions. Our growing team are about to plant a new permanent bed of them to sustain us in future seasons.

    Jerusalem artichokes are hardy perennials, related to sunflowers. They have attractive purple flowers and tall summer growth, so we’ll be using them as a windbreak (!) for our soft fruit area.

    Camel CSA’s valiant volunteer picking and packing team dig up quantities of them and scrub them clean each week for the boxes – to accompanying groans from some of our members.

    So what can you do with these often-neglected vegetables?

    My perennial favourite is Jane Grigson’s Palestine Soup, though this is a bit of a misnomer. Veggies should  leave the bacon out.

    My family also like Nigel Slater’s casserole of artichokes and pork for deepest winter, which uses sausages. It sounds a bit odd but is a surprisingly good heartwarmer on a cold frosty evening.

    The vegetarians among you could try Yotam Ottolenghi’s artichoke and goat’s cheese souffle or Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s Roast Jerusalem artichoke, hazelnut and goat’s cheese salad.

    So give Jerusalem artichokes a try. They’re flavoursome, versatile, easy to grow, should be local (if you’re living in the UK) and inexpensive.  But be warned – a little goes a long way.