Rebecca’s Recipe of the Week: Sue’s Courgettes

September 2, 2021 by General Administrator

My lovely sister in law Sue served this when we visited her this weekend, along with couscous and labneh (thickened yoghurt). It’s fresh, light and vibrant with the green chermoula, a flavoursome blend of fresh coriander, cumin, smoked paprika and lemon.

The recipe makes more chermoula than you’ll need for the recipe, but it’s very tasty and can be used on other vegetables; try it on boiled potatoes, or roasted carrots. It would probably also be delicious on a little escalope of grilled pork.

Courgettes, Sweetcorn and Green Chermoula
Serves 2-3 as a main

Ingredients
4 courgettes, topped and tailed
salt
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 ears of sweetcorn, outer leaves and ‘silk’ removed
squeeze of lemon juice
for the chermoula
10g garlic
15g red fresh chiles
1 preserved lemon
200g fresh coriander, roughly chopped
150ml rapeseed oil
10g ground cumin
4g smoked paprika
about 15ml lemon juice
salt to taste

Preparation
Slice the courgettes lengthwise and sprinkle with salt. Leave them 30 minutes in a colander to draw out the moisture. This will make the final dish more crunchy and fresh tasting.

While the courgettes are salting, make the chermoula: combine together the garlic, chile and preserved lemon in a blender or other blending device. Once it’s reduced to a paste add the coriander, oil and spices, and blend until smooth. Season to taste with the lemon juice and salt, and set aside.

When the courgettes have had their thirty minutes, brush off the salt and drizzle 1 tablespoon of the oil over the courgettes and sweetcorn.

Heat a griddle plan on high heat. When it’s hot grill the whole ears of corn, turning them regularly, until they are slightly charred on all sides. Remove and set aside.

Place as many courgettes as will fit without crowding in the pan, and cook for about 5 minutes, or until slightly charred on the bottom. Flip over, and cook for 2 minutes on the other side, or until cooked through but retaining some bite. Remove and set aside, and cook the other courgettes, if necessary.

Shave off the kernels off the now-slightly-cooled sweetcorn: hold each cob upright and use a sharp knife to slice down its length to remove the individual kernels. Place the kernels in a mixing bowl. Chop the courgettes into 2cm chunks and add them to the bowl. Toss with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive and a squeeze of lemon juice.

To serve, place some of the sauce on the bottom of a serving plate and top with the courgettes and grilled corn.

Recipe adapted from the Observer Food Monthly, 25 July 2021.

Rob’s Recipe of the Week: A slow burner

August 12, 2021 by General Administrator

This week I made green fermented hot sauce so I thought I would share the recipe. It’s a bit of a slow burner (excuse the pun) in that it won’t be ready to eat until next summer, but it’s a fun little project so bear with me…

Green fermented hot sauce

Ingredients (scale to suit your harvest):
450g green chillies
4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
3 tablespoons salt
4 cups warm water

Method:
To make chillies:
The first thing you need to do is reserve some seeds from the dried chillies in the share, and then sow them into modules or pots inside, early in 2022, repotting as they grow. I grew 9 plants in the end, which have happily produced all summer outside. I picked chillies green to stimulate more growth and froze them until I had enough for a batch of sauce. Approx 1 month of harvest gave me 225g of chillies which resulted in 1 jam jar of sauce. Beware it’ll be very hot – Frank’s hot sauce has nothing on the Canalside chillies!

To make sauce:
Remove tops of peppers and split in half lengthwise. You might want to wear gloves for this. Tightly pack a jar with peppers and garlic, leaving a little headspace

Mix salt and warm water to form a brine and pour this to completely cover the chillies

Fill a freezer bag (or alternative) with water and use this to weigh down the chillies, keeping them submerged

Cover with a kitchen towel and leave in a cool dark spot (such as a cupboard) for 3 or 4 days or until brine appears slightly cloudy and bubbly. The longer it sits, the funkier it will get. Don’t let it go past 7 days or it will be too funked (even for you). It’s worth opening the jar every day or so to release built up air pressure.

Strain the brine and reserve it. Transfer the chillies to a high-speed blender. Add 1 cup of the reserved brine, 1 cup of fresh coriander (omit if you don’t like the taste) and 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar to the blender, and process until very smooth. Strain the pulp through a fine-mesh sieve, and bottle.

Store in the refrigerator. The flavours will continue to develop and get more complex over time, and the heat will mellow. This will keep for at least 12 months in the fridge.

Adapted from: https://www.anarchyinajar.com/blog/2020/6/green-fermented-hot-sauce

Rebecca’s Recipe of the Week: Spicy Potato-Parsnip Soup with Preserved Lemon

April 9, 2021 by General Administrator

Here is a good soup for a blustery spring day. The warming spices—cumin, coriander, paprika—give this a North African flavour, as does the preserved lemon. You can make this with any ratio of potatoes or parsnips that you prefer, including all potato or all parsnip. We enjoyed this with a glass of very robust Bulgarian merlot but other drinks are available, as they say.

Note that this involves only one pan, and so results in minimal washing-up.

Spicy Potato-Parsnip Soup with Preserved Lemon
Serves 2

Ingredients
For the Soup
2 tablespoons rapeseed or olive oil
1 onion, roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
½ dried Canalside chile, deseeded if you don’t want it too hot and chopped, or 1 medium-hot dried chile, treated similarly
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon sweet smoked paprika (use a Spanish brand)
¼ cup preserved lemon, chopped fairly coarsely
500g peeled potatoes and parsnips, in any ratio (you can use all potatoes or all parsnips, too)
About 750ml stock (I think you could also use water, to be honest)
1 teaspoon salt
To decorate the Soup
4 tablespoons yoghurt
a little more smoked paprika
a little extra preserved lemon, coarsely chopped

Preparation
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and chile, reduce the heat to low, and sauté gently for 10-15 minutes, or until the onion is soft but not brown. Stir in the cumin, coriander and paprika and cook for a minute or two more, until everything smells fragrant.

Meanwhile, cut the peeled vegetables into chunks of about 2cm.

When the spices in the pan are fragrant add the vegetables and the preserved lemon and pour in the stock (or water) and the salt. Bring to a simmer and cook for 30-40 minutes, or until the vegetables are very tender indeed.

Using a potato masher, mash the vegetables to give the soup a coarse texture. Hugh F-W suggests passing the whole thing through a sieve to create a smooth puree, but this seems both a lot of work and a dubious outcome as in my view a more rustic texture suits this soup far better. But it’s up to you. Add a bit of water if it still seems a bit thick to you, and check to see if it would benefit from a bit more salt.

To serve, dish your soup into bowls and garnish each with several spoonfuls of yoghurt, a sprinkling of paprika, and some golden cubes of preserved lemon.

Recipe adapted from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, River Cottage Veg Every Day! (2011).

Rebecca’s Recipe of the Week: Carrots, Lentils, Coconut, Spinach

March 4, 2021 by General Administrator

Very good straight off the stove, and even better the next day. The grated carrot and spinach lighten the dhal, and also add beautiful little green and golden flecks to the duller gold of the lentils. The coconut milk stays in the background, adding sweetness and rich flavour without overwhelming the balance of tastes. This is good served with rice or bread, yoghurt and a pickle.

Quick Carrot Dhal
Serves 4

Ingredients
2 cloves garlic, peeled
thumb-sized piece of ginger, peeled
1 green chile, chopped—remove the seeds if you prefer
1 red onion, peeled
vegetable or coconut oil
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
200g red lentils
400ml coconut milk
600ml water
6 medium carrots, peeled and topped and tailed
2 large handfuls of spinach, coarsely chopped, or about 8 ‘cubes’ of frozen spinach
Juice of 1 lemon
Big handful of coriander, coarsely chopped

Preparation
Finely grate the garlic and ginger. Mince the onion.

Heat a large saucepan over medium heat and then add the oil. When it is hot add the garlic, ginger, chile and onion. Turn the heat to low and cook for 10 minutes until everything is soft but not browned. Stir periodically, so that it does not stick.

Meanwhile, toast the cumin and coriander seeds in a dry skillet for a few minutes, until they release a lovely smell. Set aside to cool for a few minutes, then put them into a mortar and crush them a little—they needn’t be ground.

Add the crushed cumin and coriander to the pan along with the other spices and salt. Turn up the heat to medium and cook for a minute or two. Now add the lentils, coconut milk and water and bring to a simmer. Turn the heat to low, cover and cook for 30 minutes, or until the lentils are tender. Add more water if it seems dry, and stir every one and then so it does not stick to the bottom of the pan.

While the lentils are cooking, grate the carrots coarsely and add to the lentils after they’ve cooked for about 20 minutes.

Once the lentils are tender, add the spinach and cook for a new more minutes until the fresh spinach wilts, or the frozen spinach defrosts and amalgamates into the dhal.

Stir in the lemon juice and the coriander. Taste, add more salt if you feel it necessary, and serve.

Recipe adapted from Anna Jones, The Modern Cook’s Year (2017).

Rebecca’s Recipe of the Week: A Restorative Soup

December 31, 2020 by General Administrator

This is what you need if you have eaten a lot of rich food over the holidays. The lentil soup is soothing, but not at all boring, enlivened as it is with marinated artichoke hearts and a swirl of yoghurt. You will feel better after eating this, I promise. Note, too, that it uses some of those leeks, carrots and celery that have accumulated in your fridge from the double share.

Lentil Soup with Artichoke
Serves 4

Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 leeks, trimmed, halved lengthwise and sliced thin
3 medium carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise and sliced thin
4 celery sticks, sliced thin
1 heaped tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 Canalside chile, left whole
4 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped fine
250g green lentils
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1.5l stock or water
1 teaspoon salt
5 heaped tablespoons coarsely chopped parsley
120g artichoke hearts from a jar, drained and sliced thin, to serve
plain or Greek yoghurt, to serve (if desired)

Preparation
Heat the oil over medium heat in a large saucepan with a lid. When it is warm add the leeks, carrots, celery, ginger and chile. Fry for about 10 minutes, or until the vegetables have softened and are starting to colour.
Add the garlic and stir for a few minutes more.
Stir in the lentils, and add the vinegar and water. Bring to a boil and simmer until the lentils are tender—20-30 minutes, probably. Add some more water if they seem dry.
Purée about a third of the soup in a liquidiser or food processor, and then stir this back into the pan. Add the salt and stir in most of the parsley, keeping back a little for a garnish.
Dish into bowls and place a sliced artichoke heart in the centre of each bowl. Sprinkle the remaining parsley over the top. Serve with a spoonful of yoghurt on top, if desired.

Recipe adapted from Annie Bell, Plant Power: Protein-rich Recipes for Vegetarians and Vegans (2020).

Rob’s Recipe of the Week: Caramelised Cabbage

December 18, 2020 by General Administrator

This recipe isn’t so Christmassy, but I did enjoy it. I found the liquid took a lot longer than stated to reduce, but in the end I would actually have preferred a bit more sauce when serving. Goes well with mash!

Ingredients
¼ cup double-concentrated tomato paste
3 garlic cloves, finely grated
1½ tsp. ground coriander
1½ tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1 medium head of green cabbage
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Salt
3 Tbsp. chopped dill, parsley, or coriander
Full-fat Greek yogurt or sour cream (for serving)

Method:
Preheat oven to 180°. Mix tomato paste, garlic, coriander, cumin, and red pepper flakes in a small bowl.

Cut cabbage in half through the core. Cut each half through the core into 4 wedges.

Heat ¼ cup oil in a large oven safe frying pan (or similar) over medium-high. Working in batches if needed, add cabbage to the pan cut side down and season with salt. Cook, turning occasionally, until lightly charred, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer cabbage to a plate.

Pour remaining ¼ cup oil into pan. Add spiced tomato paste and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until tomato paste begins to split and slightly darken, 2–3 minutes. Pour in enough water to come halfway up sides of pan (about 1½ cups), season with salt, and bring to a simmer. Nestle cabbage wedges back into skillet (they should have shrunk while browning; a bit of overlap is okay).

Transfer cabbage to oven and bake, uncovered and turning wedges halfway through, until very tender, liquid is mostly evaporated, and cabbage is caramelized around the edges, 40–50 minutes.

Scatter dill/other over cabbage. Serve with yogurt alongside.

From BonAppetit.com

Rebecca’s Recipe of the Week: Pumpkin, Barley, Fennel, Cheese

December 10, 2020 by General Administrator

This is a very attractive dish—so attractive, in fact, that you could consider it for a vegetarian Christmas. In any event, it’s extremely tasty. The cheese and roasted fennel blend with the soft, chewy barley to make an indulgent filling for the baked squash. Crunchy toasted oat flakes provide a pleasing contrast on the top.

It is an excellent use of the charming small squashes we’re getting in our shares these days.

To serve, stand these proudly on a platter, topped with their little squash-top berets.

Image from The Guardian online

Whole roast squash
Serves 4

Ingredients
A mixture of whole squashes: about 750g squash per person
4 fennel bulbs—keep the lacy fronds at the top
1 garlic bulb (leave it whole)
Olive oil
Salt and black pepper
250g pearl barley
125g sharp cheddar or other cheese
1 lemon, zested
1 red chilli, deseeded if you like
A knob of butter
50g rolled oats
1 tsp fennel seeds

Preparation
Preheat the oven to 180C. Use a big, heavy knife to cut off the base of each squash, so they sit upright on a tray. Cleanly cut the top off each one in a single piece (you are going to put the tops back on) about 3-4cm from the top. Use a metal spoon to scoop out the seeds and the fibres until you have a neat hollow.

Trim the fennel, removing any tough outer leaves, then cut the bulb into a few big wedges. Keep those fronds!

Put the squash in a large roasting tray or two. Scatter the fennel wedges around and put the bulb of garlic on too. Drizzle the lot with olive oil, making sure you get inside the squash, and season with salt and pepper. Put the tops back on the squash. Roast for 45-60 minutes, or until the squash are tender and the fennel has started to soften and brown. If your squash take a little longer, you can remove the fennel once it’s nicely soft and brown around the edges, as you don’t want it to overcook.

Meanwhile, put the pearl barley in a medium pan and cover with cold water. Add a big pinch of salt, then bring to the boil and simmer until al dente (about 25-30 minutes). Drain and transfer to a large bowl.

Remove the garlic and fennel from the roasting dish. When cool enough to handle, squeeze the roasted garlic out of its papery skins, into the barley. Roughly chop the fennel and add it to the bowl along with the cheese, lemon zest, salt and pepper. Chop the fennel fronds to make about a quarter cup. Chop the chilli and add both. Taste the mixture and adjust the seasoning.

Divide the mixture between the squash and return them to the oven for 10 more minutes. Meanwhile, heat some butter in a small pan. Toss in the oats, fennel seeds, and a little salt and pepper. Stir for about 5 minutes, until the flakes are golden. Drain on a plate lined with kitchen paper.

Once the squash are out of the oven, sprinkle over the toasted oats and serve.

Recipe adapted from Anna Jones, The Guardian, 24 Oct. 2016

Rebecca’s Recipe of the Week: Pumpkin with Noodles

November 26, 2020 by General Administrator

Here is a simple salad with pumpkin and soba noodles. Thomasina Miers recommends this as a weekday lunch, and observes that it is equally good warm or cold. She also points out that the dressing is tasty on grilled chicken or fish, or sprouting broccoli.

Miso-roast Pumpkin with Noodles
Serves 4

Photo from Guardian Food

Ingredients
750g pumpkin
3 tablespoons white miso
2 tablespoons olive oil
125g soba noodles
500g red cabbage, shredded
1 large handful coriander, coarsely chopped
2 spring onions, finely sliced
Chile oil, to serve

For the dressing
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 tablespoons light soya sauce
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons tahini or other sesame paste
1 tablespoons honey
1 clove garlic, peeled and grated
1 inch ginger root, peeled and grated
A splash of water

Preparation
Heat the oven to 220C. Wash the pumpkin (peel if you prefer) and cut into wedges. Whisk the miso and olive oil and toss onto the pumpkin. Tip onto a baking sheet and roast for 30-35 minutes, or until tender and golden at the edges. Leave to cool.
Meanwhile bring a pan of water to the boil and cook the noodles according to the instructions on the packet, until al dente. Drain and rinse in cold water.
Mix the noodles, cabbage, most of the coriander, and spring onions in a bowl.
Make the dressing: whisk all the ingredients together.
Tip the dressing onto the ingredients in the bowl and blend.
Array the dressed vegetables on a serving platter and top with the roasted squash. Decorate with the remaining coriander and serve with chile oil on the side, for those who want this a bit spicy.

Recipe adapted from Thomasina Miers, Guardian, 31 Oct. 2020.

Rebecca’s Recipe of the Week: Pumpkins, Lentils, Ginger

November 12, 2020 by General Administrator

The zingy, fried ginger topping gives this dal an invigorating freshness. Absolutely don’t leave it out!

The ratio between the pumpkin and the carrots does not need to be precise and overall I used a good deal more pumpkin than the 200g called for in the original recipe. Plus I didn’t have a Kashmiri red chilli so I used a dried Canalside chile and that worked just fine. Serve with flatbreads or rice.

Red lentil dal with carrots, pumpkin, and fried ginger
Serves 4

Photo from Guardian Food

Ingredients
210g red lentils
3 tbsp coconut oil
150g onion, cut into half moons
100g carrots, finely diced
200-300g pumpkin, peeled and diced into 2cm pieces
½ tsp ground turmeric
½ teaspoon ground red chilli powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoon fresh lime or lemon juice
2 teaspoon coriander seeds, crushed
2 teaspoon black or brown mustard seeds
5cm piece fresh ginger, peeled and cut into matchsticks
1 Kashmiri red chilli
10g chopped fresh coriander leaves

Preparation
Clean the lentils for any debris, rinse under cold running water, then put in a bowl, cover with 500ml cold water and set aside.

Heat a tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat in a medium saucepan. Add the onions, and saute until they turn translucent – three to four minutes. Add the carrots and pumpkin, and saute until tender – about eight minutes. Stir in the turmeric and red chilli powder, and cook for a further minute.

Add the lentils and their soaking water to the vegetables, stir in a teaspoon of salt and bring to a rolling boil over a medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low, cover and leave to simmer until the vegetables are completely tender and cooked – about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat, stir in the lime juice, taste and season with salt as needed.

Heat the remaining coconut oil in a small saucepan over a medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the coriander and mustard seeds, and cook until the seeds start to pop. Add the ginger to the hot oil, cover the pan with a lid and swirl for 30 seconds, until the mustard seeds stop sputtering.

Break the Kashmiri chilli in half and toss it into the hot oil. Remove from the heat and swirl the contents of the saucepan for another 30 seconds, until the chilli turns crisp. Pour this hot mixture over the lentils. Garnish with the fresh coriander leaves and serve warm with buttered flatbread or plain rice.

Recipe adapted from Nik Sharma, Guardian 31 Oct. 2020.

Rebecca’s Recipe of the Week: Mexican Greens with Potatoes and Flatbreads

September 3, 2020 by General Administrator

In case you are wondering what to do with the mysterious ‘huauzontle’, here is the answer! Huauzontle, also known in Mexico as ‘quelites’, is a flavoursome green a bit like sprouting broccoli. In this recipe it is mixed with juicy tomatoes and cubed potatoes to make a superlative filling for a tortilla or other flatbread. Serve topped with thick yoghurt.

Quelites a la Mexicana
Serves 2

Ingredients
250g potatoes
250g huauzontle
200g onions
150g tomatoes
½ to 1 Canalside chile, deseeded if desired
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Yoghurt and flatbreads, to serve

Preparation
Put the potatoes in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Add a pinch of salt. Bring to the boil and cook until tender. Depending on the size of the potatoes, this can take between 20 and 40 minutes. Drain and let cool
Put the huauzontle in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Add a pinch of salt. Bring to the boil and cook until it’s tender, about 8 minutes.

Peel the onions and chop coarsely. Chop the tomatoes into chunks roughly the same size as the onions. Slice the chile.

By now the potatoes should be cool. Cut them into cubes, about 2cm or thereabouts.

Heat the oil in a frying pan or casserole pan. Add the onions, tomatoes and chile, and sauté for a few minutes. Add the cooked huauzontle, cubed potatoes and cumin, and sauté for a few more minutes to heat through.
Serve topped with yoghurt in flatbreads (tortillas would be traditional).

Recipe freely adapted from this fantastic video by Mexican internet sensation Doña Ángela. Many thanks to Ricardo Aguilar for his advice about cooking quelites and for telling me about Doña Ángela.

highslide for wordpress