Category Archives: Recipes

May Recipe – Spanish Sausage Stew

Ingredients:

15mi/1tbsp olive oil
1 onion
2 garlic cloves
1 carrot
4 fresh spicy sausages
150ml/1/4 pint/2/3 cup tomato juice
15ml brandy (optional)
1.5ml / 1/4 tsp Tabasco sauce
5ml/1tsp sugar
Salt and freshly ground pepper
30ml/2tbsp chopped fresh corriander

Instructions:

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan
  2. Cook the onion, garlic, carrot and sausages for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until the sausage have evenly browned.
  3. Stir in the tomato juice, brandy, tobacco and sugar with salt and pepper to taste
  4. Cover and simmer for 25 minutes until the sausage is cooked and the sauce has thickened.
  5. Serve at once garnished with chopped coriander.

April Recipe – Pan Fried Mackerel with Chorizo and New Potatoes

Ingredients

  • 150g piece chorizo, roughly chopped
  • 2 small onions, chopped
  • 200g new potatoes, washed and cut into small cubes
  • 250g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 mackerel fillets, halved lengthways with pin bones removed
  • Large handful of fresh parsley leaves, chopped

Method

  1. To prepare the potatoes, bring a medium pan of water to the boil. Add the potatoes, return to the boil and cook for about 5 minutes until par boiled. Drain in a colander.
  2. Heat a large, non-stick frying pan over a high heat. Add the chorizo and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes, until most of the oil has been released. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  3. Add the mackerel fillets to the pan skin side down and fry for 3-4 minutes. Turn and cook on the other side for the same time. Remove from the pan.
  4. Reduce the heat to low and add the onions and potatoes to the pan. Coat in the oil from the chorizo and cook for 12-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the potatoes are cooked through and the onions golden.
  5. Flake the mackerel fillets with a fork and add them to the pan. Stir the tomatoes and chorizo into the pan. Gently mix and cook for 2 minutes, until piping hot.
  6. Stir in the parsley. Divide between 4 plates and serve with a mixed leaf salad.

 

March Recipe – Mini Quiches

Ingredients

  • 190g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 100g cold butter, cut into cubes, plus extra for greasing
  • 10g Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 medium free-range egg
  • 1 tsp ice-cold water

Filling

  • 2 medium free-range eggs
  • 2-3 slices ham, finely diced
  • 200ml crème fraîche
  • 80g mature cheddar cheese, grated
  • Freshly ground black pepper

 

Method 

  1. First make the pastry. For the best results, keep your hands and kitchen as cool as you can while doing this. Sift the flour into a mixing bowl and rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the Parmesan, then mix in the egg and the water until the dough forms a ball. You may need a tiny bit more water depending on the size of the egg. Wrap the pastry in clingfilm and chill it in the fridge for half an hour.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C Fan/Gas 4
  3. Grease the tin with a little butter and a sprinkling of flour. Press the pastry discs gently into the tin.
  4. Sprinkle some flour on your work surface and roll out the pastry. Using a pastry cutter cut out discs of pastry of a size to fit your mince pie tin. Think jam tarts – the sides must be high enough to contain the filling.
  5. To make the filling, mix all the ingredients, except 25g of the cheese, together and stir gently to avoid getting too much air into the mixture. Spoon the filling into the pastry cases and sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top. Cook in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes or until the egg mixture has lost its wobble!
  6. Serve hot or cold with new potatoes and a green salad.

 

February Recipe – Lamb Tagine with Apricots and Couscous

This recipe was created for Fairtrade Fortnight 2021, utilising Fairtrade ingredients.

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp Fairtrade sunflower oil
  • 1 onion,  peeled and chopped
  • 500g lamb mince
  • 1 tbsp Fairtrade ground cumin,
  • 1 tsp Fairtrade ground turmeric,
  • 1 tsp Fairtrade ground coriander
  • 300ml lamb stock or vegetable stock
  • 75g Fairtrade dried apricots, chopped
  • 240g tin Fairtrade chickpeas, drained

Lemon and Mint Couscous

  • 250g Fairtrade couscous
  • 2 Fairtrade lemons , juice and zest of
  • 450 ml vegetable stock
  • 4 tbsp fresh mint (Chopped)

Method

  1. Add the oil to a large pan with a lid and fry the onion and mince over a medium heat until browned.
  2. Add the cumin, turmeric and coriander and fry for 2 – 3 minutes.
  3. Add the lamb stock, bring it to a boil then reduce the heat and cook for 30 – 40 minutes.
  4. Put the couscous in a heat proof bowl, add the lemon zest and juice together with the stock. Cover the bowl with a tight fitting lid or upturned plate and leave it for 5 minutes.
  5. Uncover the bowl and fluff the couscous up with a fork and stir through the mint.
  6. Add the drained chickpeas and apricots to the tagine and simmer for 5 minutes. then serve with the couscous

 

 

January Recipe – Celeriac and Leek Gratin w/ Fried Cavolo Nero

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 medium leeks, sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 tbsp chopped thyme, plus extra to garnish
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 300ml (1/2pt) vegetable stock
  • 50ml double cream
  • Butter, for greasing
  • 1 celeriac, finely sliced
  • 450g (14 1/2oz) floury potatoes, finely sliced
  • 300g cavolo nero
  • 50ml olive oil

To make a Vegan poaching liquor:

  • 500ml plant milk, oat milk or unsweetened soy milk
  • 300ml oat or soy cream
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 2 bay leaves

Method 

  1. Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C. If using make the vegan poaching liquor by adding all of the poaching liquor ingredients to a pan and stir thoroughly. Heat on medium and bring to a gentle simmer.
  2. Heat the oil in a large lidded frying pan. Add the leeks and garlic then cover and sweat, over a medium heat, for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the leeks catching. Stir in the thyme, then remove from the heat and leave to cool slightly.
  3. In a small jug, stir the flour into 4 tbsp stock Add the cream, followed by the remaining stock; stir to combine. Set aside.
  4. Grease a 2ltr ovenproof dish with butter. Layer up the celeriac potatoes and the leek mixture, alternating between each until all are used up. Pour over the cream mixture, Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour.
  5. Remove the foil and return to the oven for a further 15 minutes, or until tender and golden. Leave to stand for 10 minutes, before scattering with the extra thyme and serving.
  6. If the cavolo nero leaves are large remove the stalks and slice the leaves into strips about 1cm wide. To blanch them, cook in a saucepan of boiling water for 2-3 minutes or until just beginning to wilt, then drain well.
  7. Add the oil to the saucepan, turn the heat to high, then add the cavolo nero. Season, then cook for a couple of minutes, tossing frequently, until tender. Serve immediately.

 

December Recipe – Easy Fruit Christmas Cake

Ingredients

  • 3 large eggs
  • 300g  plain flour
  • 250g  butter, softened
  • 250g  light muscovado sugar
  • 1 tsp ground mixed spice
  • 410g jar of mincemeat
  • 3- 4 tbsp brandy (Can be substituted with orange, grape or apple juice)
  • 500g dried mixed fruit, soaked overnight with a tbsp of brandy
  • 1 tbsp black treacle
  • 20cm round or 18cm square cake tin, lined with baking parchment

Method

  1. To ensure the cake is positioned centrally in the oven, put one of the shelves just below the centre of it. Set the oven to 140°C/280°F/Gas Mark 1.
  2. Lightly grease the base and sides of your chosen tin and line with baking parchment. To prevent the outside edges of the cake drying out, tie a double band of brown paper, 3cm deeper than the depth of the tin, around the outside of the tin.
  3. Break the eggs into a bowl and add the rest of the ingredients, except for the remaining brandy. Beat the mixture until smooth, then spoon it into the lined cake tin. With a wet spoon, press the mixture into the tin and smooth on top, so that it’s level then in the centre make a slight hollow as this will help the cake to have a level top when cooked .
  4. Bake the cake in the centre of the oven for 3 – 3.5 hours, or until the cake feels firm to the touch and a skewer comes out clean after being inserted into the cake. If the top is getting too brown, cover with foil or greaseproof paper.
  5. Remove the cake from the oven and place the tin on a wire rack. Leave the cake to cool for about 15 minutes, then spoon over the brandy. Leave it to cool completely in the tin.
  6. Remove the cake from the tin and wrap it in more baking parchment and then foil, and store in a cool place for up to 3 months, until ready to cover with icing and decorate. If desired once a week ‘feed’ the cake with a drizzle of brandy.

Cook’s Tip

Soak your dried fruit overnight in a glass bowl if you’re choosing to make a non-alcoholic Christmas cake to avoid the cake being too dry.  Keep the cake in an airtight tin and don’t feed the cake with brandy.

November Recipe – Apple & Pecan Flapjack

Ingredients

  • 2 eating apples (unpeeled), cored, cut into quarters and roughly chopped
  • 150g (5oz) butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 150g (5oz) light soft brown sugar
  • 50g (2oz) porridge oats
  • 2 eggs
  • 200g (7oz) self-raising flour
  • 50g (2oz) pecans, plus 12 to decorate

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Gas mark 4, then grease the sides of the Swiss roll tin with butter and line the base with baking parchment.
  2. Place the prepared apples in a food processor and pulse a few times until they’re in small pieces.
  3. Add the butter and sugar and cream together for 20 seconds or so, then add all the remaining ingredients and pulse just until mixed.
  4. Tip the mixture into the prepared tin and place the pecans on top, spaced apart to form an even grid (4 x 3). Bake for 25-30 minutes or until risen and golden, then remove from the oven and leave in the tin to cool down completely.
  5. When cool, cut into 12 bars, each with one pecan on top, and remove from the tin.

Non-food processor method

  1. Chop the apple into small chunks. Set aside.
  2. In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar together, add the oats and self raising flour and apples and thoroughly mix everything together.
  3. Tip the mixture into the prepared tin and place the pecans on top, spaced apart to form an even grid (4 x 3). Bake for 25-30 minutes or until risen and golden, then remove from the oven and leave in the tin to cool down completely.
  4. When cool, cut into 12 bars, each with one pecan on top, and remove from the tin.

 

October Recipe – Chicken Yakitori Skewers

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp miso paste
  • 3 tbsp  soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp mirin
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 3 chicken breast fillets, cut into 2cm pieces
  • Ground white pepper, to season
  • 2-3 large spring onions, trimmed and cut into 2cm (¾in) pieces
  • 2-3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 spring onion, extra thinly sliced on the diagonal

Method 

  1. Bring the miso paste, soy sauce, mirin and sugar to a simmer in a saucepan over a medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally for 2-3 mins, or until the sauce thickens slightly. Set aside to cool.
  2. Combine the chicken and half the sauce in a bowl. Season with ground white pepper. Chill in the fridge for 30 mins to marinate.
  3. Thread the chicken, and spring onions alternately onto metal or (pre-soaked) bamboo skewers.
  4. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add the skewers to the pan and cook, turning once, for 6 -8 mins, or until cooked through.
  5. Transfer to a platter and sprinkle with the remaining spring onion. Serve immediately with the extra sauce for dipping.

 

 

 

September Recipe – Vegetable Biryani

Ingredients

  • 1 small carrot, peeled, cut into small cubes
  • 1 medium potato, peeled, cut into small cube
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 25g/1oz French beans, finely chopped
  • 50g/2oz frozen peas
  • 1 tsp tomato purée
  • ½ tsp finely chopped green chillies
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • ¼ tsp ground turmeric
  • 225g/8oz cooked basmati rice
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 4 roasted cashew nuts, chopped
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds, toasted
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • yoghurt, to serve (optional)

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 170C/235F/Gas 3.
  2. Cook the carrot, potato, peppers, French beans and peas in a pan of boiling water for 3-4 minutes, or until tender. Drain and return to the pan.
  3. Add the tomato purée, green chillies, garam masala and turmeric to the vegetables and mix until well combined.
  4. Place half of the rice at the bottom of an ovenproof dish, spread the vegetable mixture on top, and then place the rest of the rice on top, spreading it evenly.
  5. Sprinkle the top layer of rice with the chopped onions, cashew nuts, cumin seeds and red chilli powder. Cover with aluminium foil and bake for 15 minutes. Serve with yoghurt.

 

August Recipe – Black Pudding Scotch Eggs

Ingredients:

400g Sausage meat
220g Black pudding
20g finely chopped parsley
7 large eggs (2 whisked in a bowl)
80g breadcrumbs
80g plain flour
Salt and pepper

Method:

  1. Mix the sausage meat, black pudding and parsley with a pinch of salt and pepper until you have a smooth texture.
  2. Split into 5 even portions and roll them flat between sheets of baking paper. Aim for 3-4 mm thick
  3. Boil 5 eggs for 6 minutes then add straight to ice water for 10 minutes.
  4. Peel the eggs and wrap tightly with the meat mix, trimming any excess.
  5. Dip the wrapped eggs in the flour then dip in the whisked egg and breadcrumbs until the eggs are coated all over.
  6. Deep fry at 170°c for 5 minutes, turning regularly.