Roast Garlic and Cauliflower Soup

Method:
  • Place roast garlic, cauliflower and onion on baking tray, drizzle with oil and season with salt pepper, parsley and thyme. Roast for 30 mins.
  • When vegetables are done, place in saucepan with stock, water, bay leaf and celery. Simmer for 30 mins.
  • Blend then season to taste.
  • Serving suggestion: crispy bacon and croutons.

Spinach & feta filo pie

Method:

  • Heat the oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6.
  • Cook the onions in a large knob of butter until soft and turning golden.
  • Add the garlic and cook for a couple of minutes.
  • Add the spinach in batches and cook until wilted.
  • Cool, then tip into a bowl (leaving behind any excess liquid from the spinach) and mix in the nutmeg, feta, eggs and season.
  • Melt 30g more butter, and butter a non-stick springform cake tin, about 20-22cm.
  • Put the first sheet of filo in the tin and brush with butter, letting the excess hang over the sides. Keep going with the rest of the sheets, turning a little before adding each additional pastry sheet and brushing all over with butter.
  • When all the pastry is used up, tip in the filling and fold over the excess pastry to cover.
  • Butter the top then bake in the oven for about 20-30 minutes until the filo is crisp and golden.
  • Leave for 5 minutes before turning out and cutting into wedges to serve.

Spicy Caponata

To make this spicy aubergine and red pepper dip:

  • Prick aubergine all over with a fork, slice red pepper rub olive oil over both and put on baking tray in oven with 2 cloves of garlic for 20 - 30mins.
  • Chop onion and heat in olive oil in small pan until soft.
  • Add 3 spoons olive oil & 1 spoon cider vinegar to a large bowl.
  • Add cooked onions and all other ingredients.
  • Remove skin from aubergine, pepper and garlic.
  • Add to bowl. Use hand blender to squish it down.
  • Taste, season again if necessary.
  • Toast pitta, chop into triangles.
  • Serve. Eat. Smile x

Chinese Broccoli With Oyster Sauce

Method:

  • Crush the garlic and clean the Chinese Broccoli. Be careful to make sure the vegetable is very clean — bugs also think it’s a yummy vegetable!
  • Add the oil to the pan. When the pan is hot, throw in the garlic. When the garlic starts to turn light brown, add the Chinese Broccoli.
  • Stir for a few seconds until it starts to cook. It should cook fast, maybe 1-2 minutes tops.
  • Chinese Broccoli is done when the leaves are dark green and wilted, and the stem is medium green.
  • Then add the oyster sauce and remove from heat.

Fried Spring Rolls Street style

Method:

  • Submerge the dry mushrooms in water and soak for 2 hours. Squeeze out the water and slice the mushrooms thin. Keep the water for cooking later.
  • If using frozen wrappers, you’ll want to de-thaw them now too. Soak the bean thread noodles for 10 minutes in room temperature water until soft. Remove from water and cut the mess in 1/2.
  • Fry the mushrooms with 1 tablespoon of oil, 1 tablespoon of the oyster sauce and 2 teaspoons of the white soy sauce on medium high heat for about 5 minutes. Keep adding the mushroom water (which you soaked the mushrooms in) as it gets dry. Set aside.
  • Fry the garlic in a bit more oil until fragrant on medium-high heat. Add the noodles, mushrooms and the rest of the sauces. Stir well to mix. Add the scallions and pepper. Remove and set aside. Let cool until room temperature.
  • Wrap the wrappers as shown. Put about 1-2 tablespoons of filling inside. Seal with egg, water or wheat flour paste.
  • Wheat flour paste can be made by combining a small spoon of wheat flour with water. Deep fry on medium high heat. The oil should be dancing (you’ll see it move) but not smoking.
  • Remove and let dry on a wire or mesh rack to keep it crispy. Make the sauce by smashing the chili in a stone mortar & pestle, and mixing with the vinegar and sugar. Simmer over low heat until thicker, about 5 minutes.
  • Note: Thai spring roll wrappers are similar to Chinese egg roll wrappers in that they are made of wheat and not rice. They are not the same as rice-paper Vietnamese spring roll wrappers. Do not substitute with rice paper wrappers if you want authentic Thai spring rolls. You can usually buy Thai spring roll wrappers frozen in SE Asian Markets.
  • Black mushrooms (shittake) are easily bought dry. You can soak them to make them soft again, but keep the water to cook with.
  • The amount of oyster sauce depends on your brand. Thai brands are not as salty as Chinese brands. If you're using Chinese, lessen the amount called for in this recipe.
  • Make sure your wrappers and rolls don't dry out when you're rolling. Keep a damp cloth over the wrappers and finished rolls while rolling.
  • You can freeze un-fried rolls in an air-tight container and fry another day. When I make spring rolls, I tend to make a large batch and freeze them for later.
  • When frying frozen spring rolls, fry one at a time. They're ice-cold and you don't want to cool down your oil too much. If the oil is not hot enough, you get greasy soggy spring rolls. Yuck.
  • Feel free to dress it up a bit by adding any of the following before frying the noodles: shredded cabbage, bean sprouts, ground pork or ground tofu.
  • You may need to add more oyster sauce & soy sauce if you add more filling.

Vegetable Slice

Method:

  • Finely chop the onion & garlic.
  • Cook in a little oil with dried herbs and spices until golden brown.
  • Cube the tofu and add to pan.
  • Mix well and cook for a few minutes.
  • Transfer to a blender or food processor and whizz until smooth.
  • Aim for a creamy consistency, adding a little water or soya milk if necessary.
  • Transfer to a large bowl.
  • Make the pastry by rubbing the margarine into the flour, until it looks like fine breadcrumbs.
  • Add enough water to make a dough that's not too sticky.
  • On a floured surface, roll the dough to the size of your baking tray.
  • In a food processor, whizz all the vegetables (except the tomatoes) until very fine.
  • Add to the tofu mixture and mix well.
  • Transfer the mixture to the pastry case.
  • Slice the tomatoes thinly and decorate top with them.
  • Sprinkle a little olive oil and dried herbs over the tomatoes.
  • Bake for about 45 minutes at 200C or gas mark 6.

Phillymeloo

Method:

  • Cover chopped tomatoes & onions in salt and let sit overnight.
  • Drain off excess liquid then add all other ingredients and simmer until it reaches a consistancy you like.
  • Cool a little then jar!
  • Enjoy x

Asparagus with Orange and Ginger

Method:

Salsa... This is not really a sauce, more like a warm, crunchy, syrupy, spicy marmalade.

  • Melt butter in pan and fry onions gently to caramelize (I added suger to speed up the process).
  • After a couple of mins, add the chopped ginger.
  • Gently fry for further 5 mins then add orange peel, lemon juice and sugar.
  • Continue to cook for further 6/7 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, dry fry the walnuts for a couple of minutes then break into pieces.
  • 1 minute before serving, add the walnuts.
  • Chop tough ends off of the asparagus.
  • Wash & dry the 'gus.
  • Place on a row of long skewers on a roasting dish (keeps them from burning on one side), brush with olive oil and place in an oven @ 180° for 6/7 mins.
  • Serve salsa on top of a slice/2 of orange (peel cut off) on end of 'gus.
  • First time I tried this so wide open for modification. G'luck :-)

Betroot And Basamic Vinegar Salad

Method:

Betroot Mayo:

  • Put the betroot in with the mayo.
  • Mix until pink.
  • Keep chilled until needed.

Dressing:

  • Put water and balsamic vinagar in a bowl.
  • Add the mayo and mix until slightly pink.
  • Wash the salad put on a plate and drizzle the dressing over the salad and add tomatos.

Cheesy Parsnips

Method:

  • Peel and chop the parsnips into chunks and put them in a saucepan with cold water, the thyme and salt.
  • Bring up to the boil, and cook until the parsnips are tender.
  • Drain and then process in a food processor with the rest of the ingredients (they won’t go all starchy like potatoes), or you can just mash and mix with all the other ingredients until smooth.
  • They also reheat well, although you may need to add a splash of water to get them going.

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