Monday, 27 August 2012

Torshi Seer (7 year garlic)

Pickled garlic. My Friend Grammy told me about this. I have not tried it yet but I am going to as soon as I can get some good garlic. We are growing it on the allotment but that won't be ready yet. Not sure if I can wait 7 years though! The recipe comes from Tumericsaffron as does the photo.

7-8 garlic bulbs, remove the outer dried skins
2-3 cups vinegar/fill to the rim
3 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons honey

Place the bulbs in a completely dry glass jar.
Add salt and honey to the vinegar in a separate glass bowl. Mix well.
Pour the mixture over the cloves. Add more vinegar if needed. All the cloves should be covered by vinegar.
Cover the lid with the plastic wrap and close tight.
Place in a cool and dark place. They'll be ready to serve after a couple of years so that they can age, and the seven year seer torshis are known for their great appetizing taste.

Hummingbird Cake

Serves 16 - 24
This is quite a solid tray bake cake. A bit like a carrot cake.

375g self-raising flour, sifted
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
375g brown sugar
75g desiccated coconut
100g walnuts, finely chopped
660g crushed pineapple, well drained
3 very ripe bananas, mashed
3 eggs
300ml vegetable oil

Cream Cheese Icing
100g cream cheese, at room temperature
50g unsalted butter, softened
225g icing sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla

1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease and line a large slab pan (approximately 30cm x 20cm x 5cm).
2. In a large bowl, combine flour and cinnamon. Add the sugar, coconut, walnuts, pineapple, banana, eggs and oil and give it a really good mix.
3. Spread the mixture into the prepared cake tin and bake for approximately 50 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean. The cake should spring back when lightly pressed in the middle (if the cake ends up browning too quickly during cooking, cover with foil).
4. Allow the cake to stand in the tin for 10 minutes. Invert onto a cooling rack and let it cool completely.
5. For the icing, combine the cream cheese, butter, icing and vanilla using a hand-held mixer or freestanding mixer. Beat until smooth. Spread on top of the cooled cake.

Sticky lemon chicken

Serves 4.

A quick and easy chicken dish to serve with either rice or potatoes and veg. Very moist and very tasty.

4 chicken breast fillets with skin, about 150g/5oz each
1 large lemon
2 tsp fresh thyme leaves or a generous sprinkling of dried
1½ tbsp clear honey

Preheat the grill to high and lightly oil a shallow heatproof dish. Put the chicken in the dish, skin side down, and season with salt and pepper. Grill for 5 minutes. While the chicken is grilling, cut four thin slices from the lemon.
Turn the chicken fillets over and put a slice of lemon on top of each one. Sprinkle over the thyme and a little more seasoning, then drizzle with the honey. Squeeze over the juice from the remaining lemon and spoon round 2 tbsp water. Return to the grill for 10 minutes more, until the chicken is golden and cooked all the way through. Serve the chicken and the sticky juices with rice or potatoes and a green veg - broccoli or leeks are good.

Rich pizza and pasta sauce

A sauce to use up all those ripe tomatoes. Freezes well. Use for pasta dishes and pizza topping.

2lb ripe tomatoes
2tbsp olive oil
4oz onions
2cloves garlic
2tbsp tomato puree
1tbsp dried oregano
2tbsp fresh basil
1 bay leaf
1oz caster sugar
2tbs salt and pepper

Heat the oil and fry the onions and garlic for 8 minutes until soft. Add everything else. I sometimes add a dash of red wine.
Simmer gently for 30 – 40 mins stir occasionally.
Freezes well.

Tourtiere, a Quebec specialty - Meat Pie

Servings:   4

A French Canadian pork pie served hot. (Can also be served cold)

Make dough for double crust pie, chill, wrapped, for 1 hour
1 onion, chopped
1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
1 lb. ground pork
1 stalk celery, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 cup chicken stock (I use homemade)
1/2 teasp. salt
1/2 teasp. thyme
1/4 teasp. ground allspice
1 bay leaf
2 Tablespoons fresh bread crumbs

In a saucepan cook onion & celery in butter over mod. heat, stirring frequently, for 4 mins. Add garlic and cook the mix for 2 mins. Add the pork and cook stirring until pork changes color. Add the chicken stock, the thyme, salt, allspice and bay leaf and simmer the mixture, covered, for 30 mins. Let it cool and stir in breadcrumbs.
Roll ball of dough into 9-inch round,fit it into a 7-inch pie plate & spoon pork mixture into it. Roll smaller ball of dough into 7.5 inch round and lay on top of the filling. Press edges together to seal pie and trim excess dough. Make a 1/2 inch X in the center, brush dough with egg glaze (1 egg, beaten with 2 Tablesp. cream) and bake the tourtiere in the lower third of a preheated oven (425 degrees F) for 10 mins. Reduce heat to moderately hot (375 degrees F), transfer the tourtiere to the middle of the oven and bake it for 25 mins. more, or until crust is golden.

One-pan Spanish fish stew

Serves 4.

A really tasty fish and prawn stew with potatoes all cooked in one pot on top of the cooker. Everyone here had seconds.

NB. I used cod in my recipe and extra garlic. I also did not include the chick peas as I didn't realise we had run out until it was too late. we had freshly baked rolls to mop up all the juices.

handful flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
2 garlic cloves , finely chopped
zest and juice 1 lemon
3 tbsp olive oil , plus extra to serve
1 medium onion , finely sliced
500g floury potatoes , cut into small chunks, no larger than 2cm cubes
1 tsp paprika
pinch cayenne pepper
400g can chopped tomatoes
1 fish stock cube
200g raw peeled king prawns
½ a 410g can chickpeas , rinsed and drained
500g skinless fish fillets, cut into very large chunks

In a small bowl, mix the parsley with ½ the garlic and lemon zest, then set aside. Heat 2 tbsp oil in a large sauté pan. Throw in the onion and potatoes, cover the pan, then sweat everything for about 5 mins until the onion has softened. Add the remaining oil, garlic and spices, then cook for 2 mins more.
Pour over the lemon juice and sizzle for a moment. Add the tomatoes, ½ a can of water and crumble in the stock. Season with a little salt, then cover the pan. Simmer everything for 15-20 mins until the potatoes are just cooked. 
Stir through the prawns and chickpeas, then nestle the fish chunks into the top of the stew. Reduce the heat and recover the pan, then cook for about 8 mins, stirring very gently once or twice. When the fish is just cooked through, remove from the heat, scatter with the parsley mix, then bring the dish to the table with the bottle of olive oil for drizzling over and some crusty bread, if you want. 

Caramel shortbread fingers


Also known as Millionaires shortbread. Cuts in to 32 fingers.

4oz magarine
2oz caster sugar
8oz SR flour
Filling: 1 small tin condensed milk, 4oz margarine, 4oz caster sugar, 2tbsp syrup.
6oz good chocolate

Heat oven to Gas mark 4, grease a 7 x 11 inch shallow tin.
Cream margarine and sugar, sieve flour and fold in. Press the mixture into the tin and bake for 15-20 mins.
Filling: Place all ingredients in a saucepan and boil very gently, stirring continuously for about 10 mins.
Spread the caramel over the cooked base.
When the caramel is set, melt the chocolate and spread over. Cut into 32 pieces.