Posts Tagged:

food

Spicy Lamb Feta Bite Burgers

This recipe is wonderful served as party food in small portions as a sharer or multiple pieces served together however you like. You could serve them in a wrap, sandwich, bun of your choice or i pefer a couple in a pitta with a basic lettuce tomato and cucumber salad.

Feel free to adjust menu as desired for less or more heat use as a template as this is a very basic but effective recipe as always.

To serve 4-6 as a main or 8-10 as a starter.

Ingredients:

1kg lamb mince

4 tsp ground coriander

4 tsp cumin seeds

1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped

Large handful parsley, chopped

4 rosemary sprigs, leaves stripped and chopped

Good splash Worcestershire sauce

2 eggs, lightly beaten with a fork

200g feta cheese, cut into cubes

2 tbsp sunflower oil

For the cooling dip:

300ml natural yogurt

Large handful fresh mint chopped finely

1 fresh lemon

Method:

1) Make up your cooling dip by chopping mint finely and mixing with yogurt then season with salt and pepper a squeeze of lemon and put aside.

 

2) Cut cube shaped small feta chunks and set aside. Mix all herbs and spices together in a large mixing bowl with lamb mince, add egg and Worcestershire sauce and fold together until completely mixed together seasoning lightly with salt and pepper.

 

3) Shape mixture into portions of burger shaped lamb patties and press cubes of feta into the middle of them.

 

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4) Heat sunflower oil in a pan and cook the patties on either side for 1-2 minutes. Transfer to baking tray and cook for a further 8-12 minutes on a preheated gas mark 6. Or, in this instance we cooked them on a smoking hot griddle on around 4 minutes either side until piping hot throughout.

 

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Serve immediately alongside the cooling dip.

Bon Apetit!

(We even had some left over to pop in the freezer to defrost on a lazy day)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One Pan Duck Dinner

Here is a recipe to easily replace you’re Sunday dinner temporarily, made especially to take a load off taking no more than 40 minutes start to finish.

Ingredients:

2 duck breasts

1 tsp black peppercorns, crushed

300g cooked new potatoes, medium sliced

bunch flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

4 rashers smoked streaky bacon, chopped

Large handful of fresh asparagus

Method:

1) Score skin on duck breast season very well and lay on a cold pan skin down put the heat on low and cook for 12 minutes until crispy and then flip and cook on flesh side for 4 minutes.

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2) Remove duck breasts and place on a chopping board with tin foil covering over the top to rest the meat and keep warm.

3) Now add (boiled) cooked potatoes to the pan which will have plenty of duck fat in. Turn up the heat season well with salt and cook until brown and crispy depending on the thickness of the chopped potatoes will affect the time taken to crisp nicely.

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4) When potatoes are crisp add parsley and garlic and toss around in pan for a couple minutes. Now set aside onto hot plates.

5) Add bacon and asparagus to pan and slice duck thinly with a sharp knife. Cook for a few minutes until slightly softer and bacon is crunchy. Serve onto plates.

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6) Serve with cranberry sauce and enjoy.

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There it is, your a simple Sunday alternative!

Bon Apetit!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spaghetti Bolognese “Like Mama Made”

Spaghetti Bolognese an italian classic we all know so well, but with so many different takes and variations throughout different regions which is the best and tastiest. I can’t confirm that I have the very best recipe but I can confirm i have a seriously good authentic take on this italian staple, inspired by ‘The Hairy Bikers’ but altered slightly for instance the use of pancetta giving an extra salty pork element to the dish.

To serve 4-6 people

Ingredients:

- 500g/1lb 2 oz lean mince beef

- 1 medium onion, finely chopped

- 2 celery sticks, trimmed and finely sliced

- 2 medium carrots finely diced

- 2 cloves garlic finely chopped

- 150g pancetta or streaky bacon cubed

- 1 tbsp plain flour

- 150ml/5 fl oz red wine (preferably chianti)

- 1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes

- 2 tbsp tomato puree

- 1 beef stock cube

- 1 tsp caster sugar

- 1 tsp dried oregano or 1 tsp dried mixed herbs

- 2 bay leaves

- 450g dried spaghetti (Preferably De Cecco brand)

- salt and freshly ground black pepper

- Parmesan cheese to serve

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Method:

1. Place the mince in a large non-stick saucepan with the onion, celery, carrots and garlic.

2. Dry-fry over a medium heat, stirring from time to time with a wooden spoon for 8–10 minutes, or until the beef is no longer pink and the vegetables are beginning to brown.

3. Add the pancetta and fry with the mince and vegetables for another 2–3 minutes.

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4. Sprinkle over the flour and stir well, then add the wine, tomatoes and tomato purée, along with 300ml/12fl oz cold water.

5. Crumble the stock cube over the top then add the caster sugar and herbs.

6. Season with a few twists of freshly ground black pepper, stir well and bring to a simmer.

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7. When the liquid is bubbling, reduce the heat and simmer very gently for 30–40 minutes, uncovered, stirring occasionally.

8. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. As soon as the water is boiling, add the spaghetti and push it down with a wooden spoon to encourage the strands to separate. It’s important to use lots of water so the spaghetti can move freely without sticking together.

9. Cook for 10–12 minutes, or according to the packet instructions.

10. While the spaghetti is cooking, increase the heat under the sauce and simmer for another 10 minutes or until the liquid is reduced and the sauce is rich and thick. Stir regularly and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

11. Drain the spaghetti in a colander and divide between warmed bowls.

12. Spoon the Bolognese sauce on top, sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan cheese and serve immediately.

The end result is a thick full flavoured robust meaty sauce with a lasting after taste, one of My personal favourites.

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I hope you enjoy making this for yourself it’s by no means the most simple but it isn’t hard and the end result is magnificent.

This will certainly impress anyone you choose to share it with.

Bon Apetit!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Swift Chicken Stroganoff

Heres a great way to use up chicken breast in a fast easy tasty little recipe.

Serves 4 people.

400g of chicken

500ml of Creme fraiche (full fat) but for a healthier option choose low fat and notice minimal taste loss.

A generous handful of mushrooms, preferably wild and mixed for added depth of flavour.

1 chopped onion

2 heaped tablespoons of dijon mustard

Paprika, salt and pepper.

Method:

Chop the onion, and the mushrooms, and slice the chicken into pieces. Rub the chicken with paprika, salt and pepper.

Start by adding olive oil and butter to a pan, throw in the chopped onion until it softens. Then add in the mushrooms until they are brown. Once brown, set aside in a bowl.

Add more butter to the pan and when the butter starts to froth add in the chicken strips. Cook chicken until brown.

Add back in the mushrooms and the onions, Dijon mustard and creme fraiche, season to taste, and simmer gently for around five minutes. Serve with some light rice or noodles, and enjoy this hearty warming convenient meal. Give it a go.. You can’t go wrong!

Stroganoff Simmer

There is no such thing as “no time to cook”, by taking yourself to the shops and purchasing a ready made meal means more time and less nutrients. Keep a well stocked strategically assembled store cupboard and be inventive last minute with rices, pastas,sauces,onions and garlic. Be experimental and don’t be scared, have fun with cooking and develop your back pocket recipes, these will soon be your last minute ’5 minute meals’. Food is fuel and for optimal performance we must eat a well balanced diet, you wouldn’t feed your petrol car diesel.

“No time to cook”

Wild Mushroom Reginette Pasta

This recipe was based with a particular ingredient in mind, the English winter truffle.I have very recently due to the English truffling season only just beginning, received my preordered truffle and have been for a while now, scheming how exactly I should cook it.

A shout out to the English Truffle Company at www.englishtruffles.co.uk for providing excellent quality produce and a speedy delivery.

Something everyone MUST try.

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The dish that accompanied the truffle shavings must not be overpowering to the truffle so that the subtle musky, earthy flavour is not lost. I chose to do the simple wild mushroom tagliatelle but couldn’t source any fresh tagliatelle so just as good using the flat ribboned Reginette i chose a Wild Mushroom Reginette. Classic Italian Cuisine, as always.

This dish is so simple!!!! Done with preparation in less than ten minutes. Always prep well for an excellent finish, no searching for things in the last critical seconds.

TOTAL TIME TEN MINUTES!

Ingredients:

Quarter of a fresh lemon.

Hand full of flat leaf parsley

2 Cloves of garlic

Large knob of butter unsalted

180g Fresh Egg Reginette Pasta

2 tbsp olive oil

Salt and pepper

40g Parmesan/Parmigiana

Large handful of wild mushrooms (can be purchased from supermarkets finest sections)

NOW! Prep! Coarsely chop parsley and finely slice garlic ready to throw in pan together.

Instructions;

Step1) Bring salted water to boil ready for pasta and heat olive oil in fair sized non stick frying pan.

Step2) Drop mushrooms in medium hot pan toss around and add a third of butter, meanwhile drop pasta in to salted boiling water it will take no more than three minutes to over cook, so be aware of time.

3) The parsley should be thrown into pan with garlic remaining butter and a squeeze of lemon, tossing it all around in the pan add a squeeze of lemon.

4) By now two to three minutes should have passed and you can remove your pasta and drop it directly into the mushroom pan. Drop it a palm full of Parmesan. Move the ingredients around the pan and add a few tablespoons of starchy pasta water. The pasta should not stick together and should have a light saucy consistency.

Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Garnish with a small flourish of Parmesan.

Here I have pictures to help you visualise the process before attempting the recipe.

Mushrooms cooking in olive oil:

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All of the ingredients cooking quick in olive oil and remainder of butter is melting creating an emulsion.

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Then the pasta and pasta water is added seasoned with Parmesan, salt and pepper and shaken and tossed.. The finish product should look something quite spectacular, like this:

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Now if you choose to splash out and add that extra depth flavour and elegance to the dish by shaving truffle slices on top your dish should look something more like this:

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Bon apetit!

 

Mastering Meat

Essential tips

I was lucky to be gifted a wonderfully aged TBone Steak. To anyone who doesn’t know this particular cut consists of the short loin and tender loin aka fillet and sirloin. A highly sought after cut of beef with bone in for added flavour.

Notice the darkening of the meat and fat caused by ageing for a stronger flavour. This is a very good thing, bright red flesh proves less flavourful.

Firstly i rubbed both sides with generous amounts of salt and ground black pepper and rubbed in olive oil.

imageI heated up this griddle until it was smoking and very hot. Lay down the steak flat so that all of the surface area is in contact with the griddle pan. After two minutes i flipped the steak and pressed it down the exactly the same.

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After two minutes on both sides i have achieved my preferred finish, rare and tender. Next step is removing the steak from the pan and rest on a chopping board with a tin foil tent shape covering the steak. This method is called resting and is mandatory for a juicy steak, in the time it rests juices are lost then reabsorbed if the steak is placed directly on a plate the juices will escape and the plate will be soaked with blood, inevitably leaving the steak dry.

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I chose to serve the steak with asparagus, thick chips part boiled and fried in duck fat and seasoned with sea salt the duck fat method is most common in France and provides an excellent finish possibly my favourite.

Good luck meat lovers, get cooking.

Superior Steak & Chips

The Steak Lovers Secret

 

THE ULTIMATE STEAK & CHIPS.

You thought Miller & Carter do it well, prepare yourself for a lesson in the simple steak and chips. Juicy tender and cooked to perfection.

Firstly the chips, Heston Blumenthal inspired triple cooked chips.

To serve 4-6
You will need:

Ingredients:

1kg Maris Piper potatoes, peeled and cut into chips (approx. 2 × 2 × 6cm)
Groundnut or grapeseed oil
Sea salt

Method:

1. Place the cut chips into a bowl under running water for five minutes to wash the starch off.

2. Place 2kg cold tap water in a large saucepan and add the potatoes. Place the pan over a medium heat and simmer until the chips are almost falling apart (approximately
20–30 minutes, depending on the potato).

3. Carefully remove the cooked chips and place them on a cooling rack to dry out. Then place in the freezer for at least one hour to remove more moisture.

4. Heat a deep-fat fryer or a deep pan no more than half filled with oil (to a depth of around 10 centimetres) to 130ºC.

5. Fry the chips in small batches until a light crust forms (approximately five minutes), remove from the oil and drain on kitchen paper.

6. Put the potatoes on a cooling rack and place in the freezer for at least one hour. (At this stage, if you don’t want to cook and serve immediately, the chips can be kept in the

fridge for three days.)

7. Heat the oil in the deep-fat fryer or deep pan to 180ºC and fry the chips until golden (approximately seven minutes).Drain and sprinkle with sea salt for most effective taste.

I recommend using duck fat for the chips it’s by far the most unhealthy and luxurious, so treat yourself.

Now for the steak:

I would personally choose a good quality well sourced local beef. An aged fillet, look out for darkening of the meat it means more flavour.

Basing this on a 8-10oz piece of meat:

1) Preheat griddle or pan til very hot almost smoking. Press either side of the steak with generous amounts of salt and pepper and brush with olive oil.

2) Lay down the steak flat so the whole surface meets the pan causing the meat to instantly seal and lock in the juices. For a rare steak turn over after 2 minutes for medium 3min 30 and the same amount of time on the other side.

3) When the time has passed remove steak from the pan place on a board or plate and cover with tin foil as if putting a blanket over the steak. This method is called resting and it’s where most people go wrong, resting is mandatory for the steak to re absorb the juices lost when the molecules retract during the cooking process and the end product will end up much more flavourful and juicy.

4) After 4-5 minutes remove foil and serve steak alongside the chips. Add garlic butter to steak if desired but keep it simple the steak alone if a good quality will taste incredible.

Bon Apetit!

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Coming soon.. Sauces!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Speedy Sausage Tagliatelle Bolognese

Today I experimented with a quick and easy variation of the all time family favourite, bolognese. This is the perfect fast fix for people always on the go, as it took me less than 20 minutes to cook. Not only speedy to make its cost effective, as I used very few ingredients and ended up making use of things I had left over at the end of the week.

The dish is light, delicate and a warm pleasure to the tastebuds. I prepared this meal for two people, but you could easily double up ingredients and feed four.

Ingredients:

3tbsp of Olive Oil

1 garlic clove peeled and chopped

1 small onion peeled and finely diced

220grams of cherry tomatoes – halved

4 large good quality pork sausages (if Italian sausages are not available)

180g of fresh egg pasta tagliatelli

Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Sea salt and ground black pepper

A small pinch of chilli flakes

Method:

1.) Add olive oil to large frying pan, add in the onions and garlic and sweat down for five minutes until soft. Remove sausage meat from the skins, add to the pan and brown for five minutes. Remember to break up the sausage meat as you fry it, so that it resembles mince.

Sausage meat, Onion & Garlic

2.) Cook tagliatelli in boiling salted water until al dente or to liking.

3.) At this stage the sausage meat should be slightly coloured, add in the halved tomatoes, some seasoning and the chill flakes to the pan. Continue to cook over a medium heat for five minutes until the tomatoes break down. Add a few tablespoons of pasta water to the pan as it cooks to create a sauce.

Sauce

4.) Use tongues to remove cooked pasta and place it directly into the pan with the sauce. Toss well and adjust the seasoning to taste mixing in a small handful of grated parmesan.

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5) Serve up into pasta bowls and garnish with desired amounts of Parmesan cheese and enjoy.

Finish product.

Bon apetit!

Megan’s Parcel From Heaven

Here is a quick winter warming recipe from a friend that I had to post, seeing as it is winter and we need good fast fuss free winter warming food. One of our nation favourites to share lately is dipping bread in a soft gooey cheese and accompanied by an onion sweet and savoury relish, a comforting treat for those  frosty winter evenings.

Here is an ever so slight twist and a simple recipe to make your own oozing parcel.

Ingredients:

2 sheets ready made filo pastry

250g Camembert

2 slices of cooked chopped bacon

1 egg

2tbsp onion relish

Pinch of basil leaves roughly chopped

Method: 1) Lay out two sheets of filo pastry and lay Camembert on pastry. 2) Place the Basil, Bacon and Onion chutney on top of Camembert. 3) Gently wrap pastry around the cambert gently tucking in as you wrap. 4) Brush the pastry all over with mixed up egg wash for a nice golden shine. 5) Bake in the oven on gas mark 5 for 20 minutes and serve with a crusty baguette to dip.

The pastry will remain crispy but soften slightly inside as the cheese melts making an irresistible Moreish snack.

Camembert Parcel

Bon Apetit!