Thursday, 23 November 2017

Spaghetti with cauliflower, kale and hazelnut "pesto"

Make the most of our lovely autumnal vegetables by chucking together this fabulous "pesto" and pasta.  I'm calling it "pesto" because it's a hand cut chunky sauce, not a finely blended herby sauce.  this means that you can really taste the chunks of roasted cauliflower and hazelnuts in their separate loveliness as well as the mixture.

Olive oil
Garlic - quite a lot
cavolo nero
lemon zest
spaghetti (gluten free in our case - but could be standard, or some other long pasta)

1.  Break the cauliflower into smallish florets, and roast in olive oil for about 30 minutes.
2.  Meanwhile mix together finely sliced garlic, shredded cavolo nero, grated parmesan and roughly chopped hazelnuts with a good splosh of olive oil.
3.  Boil the water for the pasta.
4.  Sprinkle the cavo nero, hazelnut and parmesan mixture over the cauliflower and return to the oven to roast for a further 10 minutes.
5.  Cook the pasta, drain, reserve a ladleful of the cooking water.
6.  Mix the vegetable sauce with the pasta and the spoonful of water and toss.  Grate over a little lemon zest and a good grind of black pepper.
7. Serve, scoff, be amazed at how well it all goes together.

Chick peas on toast

Like beans on toast, but a bit crunchier.  Very filling, very delicious, and probably cheaper than chips.

The sourdough bread is from the very lovely Cragg bakers who are here on the outside Todmorden market on a Saturday - their bread is outstanding.

All other ingredients can be found on the market, inside and outside.  Chickpeas, olive oil, garlic, passata, tomato puree and spices from The Mediterranean Pantry.  Butter from The Crumbly Cheese.

Olive oil
Red pepper
Tomato puree
chilli flakes
mixed herbs
Dijon mustard
Chickpeas (tinned, jarred or soaked overnight and boiled for an hour)
Sourdough bread
Butter (Olive oil spread to make it vegan)

1.  Sautee chopped oniion and crushed garlic in olive oil.
2.  Add chopped red pepper, fry a little longer, then add tomato puree, a pinch of chilli flakes, a pinch of mixed herbs and a teaspoon of dijon mustard, stir in.
3.  Add drained chick peas and a tinful of water/ veg stock, simmer briefly.
4.  Add passata and simmer gently until it looks like the right consistency for you.  (if it goes too think just add a little water.
5.  Toast bread, butter ...
6.  Serve, scoff, smile

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Roast plaice, with mustard leeks and mushrooms

Easy, and a nice change.  Lovely plaice from Paul the fish, Todmorden market - veg from the outside market and olive oil, good dijon mustard and garlic from me at The Mediterranean Pantry.

Olive oil
Mixed herbs
Baby spinach

1.  Chop potatoes (washed, but peel on) into chunks, toss in olive oil, sprinkle on sea salt, and roast.
2.  Sautee leeks, crushed garlic and mushroom in olive oil, add a sprinkle of mixed herbs, and a teaspoonful of dijon mustard, add a little water to provide a little steam.  When the leeks are nearly soft stir in a big handful of baby spinach and transfer to an oven dish.
3.  Lay the plaice, skin side down on the bed of vegetables - drizzle with olive oil and grind on a little black pepper.   Roast for about 20 minutes.
4.  Dinner is done - serve, scoff.

Thursday, 9 November 2017

Halloumi, with roast potatoes and autumnal veg

This time of year gives us delicious sweet parsnips and delightfully earthy savoury cavolo nero.  I combined them with some delicious grilled halloumi and roast potatoes for this easy, satisfying vegetarian autumnal feast.

olive oil
cavolo nero

1.  Cut potatoes, skin on, into cubes.  Roast in olive oil for about 50 minutes.
2.  Peel, chop and boil the parsnips and carrots until just soft.  Drain, and "mash" by cutting with a sharp knife in all directions, add a good knob of butter and plenty of black pepper after a couple of minutes of slashing, then carry on slashing until the vegetables are in tiny pieces.  Keep warm in the oven until you are ready.
3.  Sautee chopped onion and crushed garlic, then add shredded cavolo nero.  Add a splsh of water and fry/steam until the water has evaporated.  The cavolo nero should now be done.
4.  Fry halloumi for a minute or so on each side, in a hot pan.  You might want to add a little oil to help it stop sticking.
5.  Serve, sprinkle cavolo nero with za'atar, and scoff.

The za'atar (sesame seeds, sumac and herbs) give the cavolo nero some extra zing and a protein boost.  A real winner.

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Roast cauliflower, with hazelnuts, baby roast potatoes and a mushroom gravy.

I love cauliflower, but I didn't fancy cauliflower cheese (to be honest, I am trying to cut down on lactose containing, as I've been suffering with headaches recently - and cheese is a trigger) ... anyway, to avoid disappointment of it not being cauliflower cheese, I wanted to do something tasty ... so, with some baby roasties and a flavoursome mushroom gravy this hazelnut loaded, herby spicy roast cauliflower was invented - and very tasty it was too.

Baby potatoes
Olive oil
Moussaka seasoning
Tomato puree
Veg stock cube

1.  Cut baby potatoes into pieces, toss in olive oil and roast for about a hour.
2.  Break cauliflower into florets, toss in olive oil, sprinkle with moussaka seasoning and roast for about 45 minutes.
3.  Make gravy by sauteeing onions and garlic in olive oil, add chopped mushrooms, tomato puree and stock cube with water, simmer ... after it has simmered for a few minutes stir in a spoonfulof mustard .. keep an eye on it, if it's getting a bit dry add more water, if it's too watery turn up the heat and reduce it down.
4.  Strew the cauliflower with roughly chopped hazelnuts and put back in the oven for 5 minutes.
5.  Serve, scoff, congratulate yourself.

Shepherdless pie

A bit of an old favourite, really, so this is another version of not-cottage pie, there is another one here.  Basically its a lentil and veg casserole under a lovely mashed potato topping.  Delicious.

Olive oil
Italian seasoning
Veg stock

1.  Peel and chop potatoes for mashing.
2.  Sautee onion and garlic in olive oil until soft, add whatever veg you are using eg. celery and mushrooms today, but often carrots, peppers, courgette, peas etc etc
3.  Add lentils and a lot of water/stock, simmer for a good while.
4.  Add fresh or tinned tomatoes and keep simmering.  Add whatever flavourings you fancy - this time it was an italian seasoning mix and a spoonful of mustard.
5.  Mash the potatoes with butter.
6.  Transfer the lentils to an oven dish, top with potato and bake until it starts going a bit golden.
7 Serve, with veg of your choice - we had steamed broccoli, scoff.

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Pieless leek and mushroom pie, with roasted potato wedges and steamed green beans

I think that sometimes half the reason for putting stuff in a pie is that of itself it doesn't look so gorgeous, even though it might taste great.  So, tonight, I thought ... leak and mushroom - they make a great pie, but we don't like pastry that much, so I just made a crustless pie ... it resembles a spoonful of swamp, but it tasted great.

olive oil
GF flour
soya milk
mixed herbs
edamame beans
green beans

1.  Cup potatoes into wedges, roast in oil for about 45 minutes.
2.  Chop leeks and celery, crush garlic.  Sautee together until the leeks are quite soft, about 10 minutes.
3.  Add mushrooms in chunks.  Sprinkle on some mixed herbs, continue to fry for a few minutes.
4.  Sprinkle on a spoonful of flour, and mix through until it disappears into the mixture, then add soya milk and stir to make the sauce.  Add edamame beans and a spoonful of mustard.  Stir through.  Transfer to oven dish and keep warm until you are ready to serve.
5.  Steam green beans.
6.  Serve, scoff ... it's all vegan and gluten free, but still a comforting dinner.

Edmame and cashew nut chow mein

 Ringing the changes with a bit of oriental influence.  Dead easy, once you've done the chopping, grating and crushing.  A little bit of lots of ingredients and, ta dah ....

Cashew nuts
Peanut oil
Spring onion
Chili flakes
Red pepper
Soy sauce
Rice wine
Rice wine vinegar
Edemame beans
Cooked rice noodles

 1.  Roast the cashew nuts for a few minutes, set aside.
2.  Chop veg into quite small bite sized pieces - they need to cook quickly, and at about the same rate.
3.  In a wok stir fry spring onion, crushed garlic and finely grated ginger.
4.  Add other vegetables and keep stir frying, sprinkle in chili flakes.
5.  After 5 minutes add soy sauce, rice wine and wine vinegar to steam is a little and coat the veg, you might want to add a little water too, it helps the steaming.
6.  Keep tossing veg about for a minuute or so, then add edamame beans, beansprouts and noodles.  Toss about until it's all heated through.
7.  Top with cashew nuts.
8.  Serve, scoff.

(Gluten free and vegan if you use gf/vegan soy sauce)

Friday, 20 October 2017

Deconstructed ratatoui bake, with roast anya potatoes and salad

I don't like aubergines.  I try to like them, but really I don't.  I can manage them if they are grilled first, and then incorporated into something - so, aubergine, courgette, onion and tomato - that sounds like ratatoui - but to make it more interesting I did it in layers in the oven, with loads of cheese on top (I'm not supposed to, but frankly ... sod it - I do like cheese).  Also, found some anya potatoes - and quite big ones so roasted them in thick slices - they're good, they are both crisp and chewy, yum.  Topped off with some mixed salad leaves.

Olive oil
Crushed garlic
Italian seasoning
Finely sliced onion
Cherry tomatoes
Cheese (chedder, gouda, gorgonzola, parmesan - but whatever is handy)
Anya potatoes
Salad leaves

1.  Thickly slice anya potatoes, toss in olive oil and roast for about 40 minutes.
2.  Thickly slice aubergine and courgettes.  Griddle on both sides in olive oil.
3.  Place in layers in an oven dish and top with crushed garlic and italian herbs, salt and pepper.
4.  Layer halved cherry tomatoes on top, and bung in the oven for about 30 minutes.
5.  Grate/cut into slices cheese, and spread over the top of the bake - back in the oven for 10 minutes.
6.  Toss together simple salad.
7.  Serve, scoff .... delicious

Thursday, 19 October 2017

Celeraic, lentil and hazelnuts

Lovely autumnal vegetables all around, mix with with some tasty ingredients, and you can eat all sorts of delicious things - I think I read something along these lines by Ottolengi, but I wouldn't swear to it.  All ingredients available in Todmorden market (The Mediterranean Pantry, and the veg stalls)  Also, totally vegan.

Olive oil
Green lentils
Vegetable stock
Dry white wine
Bay leaves
Baby spinach

1.  Peel the celeraic and carrots, cut into batons, spritz with lemon juice (to prevent discolouration of the celariac), toss in olive oil and roast for 45 minutes.
2.  Spread hazelnuts on a baking tray and roast for about 5-20 minutes.
3.  Put lentils on to boil with a couple of bay leaves and a spring of thyme.
4.  Sautee chopped onion and celery with crushed garlic in olive oil.
5.  When the lentils are nearly done (about 20 minutes), drain them and pick out the dry herbs.
6.  Toss the lentils into the onion mixture, with a splash of dry white wine and a cup of stock, simmer for a few minutes, so finish them off,  stir in a tablespoon of mild mustard.
7.  Turn the heat off under the lentils, stir in a big handful of baby spinach and let it wilt.
8.  Serve, put a bed of lentils on the plate, topple on the veg and sprinkle with roughly chopped roasted hazelnuts.
9.  Serve, scoff

Update - this made a fantastic soup zizzed up with some more veg stock then next day for lunch.