Tuesday, 9 August 2022

CHILLI, HONEY & GARLIC GLAZED ROAST SALMON WITH POTATOES AND CREAMY AVO & YOGURT SAUCE


This flavour packed, omega 3 rich recipe is another wonderful supper choice for a hot summer's day. 

Salmon filets are marinated in a punchy honey, chilli, garlic and spice mixture before being roasted to flaky perfection alongside some baby new potatoes in the oven. 

The real star however of the dish is the avocado, herb and yogurt sauce which does not require any cooking whatsoever (god bless the blender) but is so creamy and fragrant and acts as the ideal counterpart to the spicy salmon.

All gets served up with some chunks of feta (why not) and roast broccoli, making it a nutritious, satisfying yet quick to make dinner that is an absolute joy to eat!

SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS

  • 700g baby potatoes, halved if large
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Salt
  • 2 salmon fillets 
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced or grated
  • Juice of 1-2 lemons, to your liking
  • 1 pinch chilli flakes
  • 150g feta cheese, cubed

AVO & YOGURT SAUCE
  • 2 avocados, halved
  • 1/4 cup Greek Yogurt
  • 1 cup coriander
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, plus more for serving
  • 1 green chilli, halved and seeded
  • Juice from 1 lemon, plus more for serving
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • Salt
  • Fresh dill, for serving

METHOD
  • Preheat oven to 220C.
  • On a baking tray, toss potatoes with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Season with salt. Roast for about 20 minutes, or until tender. 
  • Place the salmon on a plate and drizzle with honey. 
  • Add the paprika, cumin, garlic, lemon juice, crushed red pepper flakes, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. 
  • Drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil, rubbing the seasonings and oil evenly into each filet. 
  • Remove potatoes from oven and push them to one side of tray. 
  • Put salmon on the other side. 
  • Return tray to oven and roast for 10 to 20 minutes more, until salmon reaches desired doneness and potatoes are soft. 
  • Meanwhile, make the avo and yogurt sauce. 
  • Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth and creamy, adding water, 1 tablespoon at a time, as needed to thin the sauce. 
  • To serve, spread the  sauce onto plates. 
  • Add the potatoes, salmon, and feta AND ENJOY!

Wednesday, 3 August 2022

COURGETTE PAPPARDELLE WITH LEMON, FETA & PINE NUTS


I absolutely adored this super light, yet flavourful and summery pasta dish!

Feta works a treat when slowly melted into a creamy sauce alongside some chopped up courgette and vegetable stock, while the mix of pappardelle pasta and courgette ribbons adds a wonderful crunch and vibrant colour to the final dish. 

Add some pine nuts, pan fried in some butter, and you get yourself an imaginative, vegetarian friendly pasta supper that takes less than 30 minutes to make!

SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE SAUCE 
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 3 tbsp oregano leaves
  • 3 large green courgettes, cut lengthways into quarters, then finely sliced 
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 150g feta, broken up into rough chunks
  • 100ml vegetable stock

FOR THE PASTA AND COURGETTE RIBBONS
  • 30g unsalted butter
  • 80g pine nuts, roughly crushed
  • 2 courgettes (ideally 1 yellow and 1 green)
  • 300g pappardelle egg pasta
  • Finely shaved zest of 1 lemon, plus 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 25g basil leaves, roughly torn

METHOD
  • Start with the sauce. 
  • Heat the oil in a large saute pan on a medium-high heat, then fry the garlic and oregano for one to two minutes, until the garlic just to starts to brown. 
  • Add the sliced courgettes, three-quarters of a teaspoon of salt and plenty of black pepper, and fry for five minutes, stirring frequently. 
  • Add the feta and stock, bring to a boil, then turn the heat to medium-low and leave to cook for 25 minutes, until the courgettes are soft, the feta has melted and the sauce is creamy. Turn off the heat and cover the pan.
  • Melt the butter in a small saucepan on a medium-high heat. 
  • Once the butter starts to spit, add the pine nuts and fry, stirring, for a minute, until they turn golden-brown, then spoon the nuts into a small bowl, to stop them cooking any more.
  • Peel the yellow and green courgettes into long, thin strips (ideally, using a mandoline or potato peeler).
  • Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil, then cook the pappardelle until al dente, stirring the courgette ribbons into the pasta water only a few seconds before the pasta is done. 
  • Drain, then return the pasta and courgette ribbons to the pan and stir in the sauce, lemon zest and juice, basil and a generous grind of black pepper. 
  • Divide between bowls, spoon over the reserved pine nuts and serve hot.

Wednesday, 27 July 2022

CRAB & CHILLI LINGUINE WITH PARSLEY


You can't really go wrong when it comes to combining fresh crab with pasta and this super simple dish delivers on all fronts! A perfect weekday summer supper that is sure to impress!

SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS

  • 400g linguine
  • 4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 whole cooked crab, picked, or about 100g/4oz brown crabmeat and 200g/7oz fresh white crabmeat
  • Small splash, about 5 tbsp, white wine
  • Small squeeze of lemon (optional)
  • Large handful flat-leaf parsley leaves, very finely chopped
METHOD
  • Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and add the linguine. 
  • Give it a good stir and boil for 1 min less than the pack says. Stir well occasionally so it doesn’t stick.
  • While the pasta cooks, gently heat 3 tbsp of olive oil with the chilli and garlic in a pan large enough to hold all the pasta comfortably. 
  • Cook the chilli and garlic very gently until they start to sizzle, then turn up the heat and add the white wine. 
  • Simmer everything until the wine and olive oil come together. 
  • Then take off the heat and add the brown crabmeat, using a wooden spatula or spoon to mash it into the olive oil to make a thick sauce.
  • When the pasta has had its cooking time, taste a strand – it should have a very slight bite. 
  • When it’s ready, turn off the heat. 
  • Place the sauce on a very low heat and use a pair of kitchen tongs to lift the pasta from the water into the sauce.
  • Off the heat, add the white crabmeat and parsley to the pasta with a sprinkling of sea salt.
  • Stir everything together really well, adding a drop of pasta water if it’s starting to get claggy. 
  • Taste for seasoning and, if it needs a slight lift, add a small squeeze of lemon. 
  • Serve immediately!

Thursday, 21 July 2022

EASY PEASY SESAME TUNA STEAK WITH NOODLE SALAD


We may be over the worst of the heat wave (for now) but temperatures are still pretty soaring and I am definitely still only in the mood for super light, flavourful and satisfying dishes that don't sit too heavy in the stomach. 

This seared, sesame coated tuna steak, served with a super fresh noodle salad ticks all those boxes and is also super quick to rustle up! A perfect weekday supper that still delivers a wow factor.

SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 sliced red chilli
  • 2 sliced garlic cloves
  • 5cm piece of fresh ginger
  • Bunch of sliced spring onions
  • 200g green beans
  • 2 vermicelli noodle nests
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp lime juice
  • 250g sliced cherry tomatoes 
  • 100g sesame seeds 
  • 4 x 150g yellowfin tuna steaks 
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

METHOD
  • Heat the vegetable oil in a frying pan over a medium heat, then gently fry the chilli, garlic cloves and fresh ginger, peeled and sliced into matchsticks, until crisp. 
  • Remove and set aside. 
  • Fry the spring onions in the same pan until golden, then remove and set aside.
  • Bring a pan of water to the boil and cook the green beans for 2 minutes, then add the noodle nests and cook for a further 1-2 minutes until al dente. 
  • Drain both and refresh in cold water.
  • Mix the toasted sesame oil, soy sauce and lime juice in a large bowl. 
  • Toss through the noodles and green beans with the cherry tomatoes and the spring onions. 
  • Put the sesame seeds on a plate and press the tuna steaks  on top to coat all over. 
  • Heat a glug of olive oil in a frying pan over a high heat and cook the steaks for 1 minute on each side. 
  • Slice and serve with the noodle salad and crispy aromatics.

Tuesday, 19 July 2022

SUMMER SALMON NIÇOISE SALAD

 

I LOVED this twist on the classic tuna niçoise salad in which your classic tinned tuna get substituted with the most wonderfully flaky yet juicy and super tasty slow roast salmon.

Add a great dressing, potatoes, green beans, tomatoes, olives and perfectly waxy cooked eggs and you get yourself a healthy, delicious and heat wave proof dinner! What's not to love!!

SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS

  • 8 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 400g skinless salmon fillet
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 200g green beans
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 500g small potatoes
  • 1small shallot
  • 1 head of butter lettuce
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • A pinch of sugar
  • ½ cup black olives

METHOD
  • Arrange a rack in center of oven; preheat to 180c. 
  • Pour 1 Tbsp. oil into center of a rimmed baking sheet, then arrange. salmon over oil. 
  • Season salmon all over with salt and pepper, then drizzle with another 1 Tbsp. oil.
  • Roast salmon until flesh flakes in the thickest part of the fillet with pressed gently, 30–35 minutes. 
  • Meanwhile, fill a medium saucepan with water. 
  • Add several generous pinches of salt and bring to a boil, covered, over medium-high heat.
  • While salmon is cooking and water is coming to a boil, focus on the rest of your salad prep. First, trim stem end off green beans and quarter your potatoes
  • Cut 1 cup tomatoes in half.Peel and finely chop 1 shallot. Transfer to a medium bowl; set aside.
  • Separate leaves from 1 head of lettuce
  • When water is boiling, add your potatoes an cook for about 8 minutes.
  • Then add the green beans and cook until tender but still retain some snap, about 2 minutes.
  • As you wait for the green beans and potatoes to cook, fill another medium bowl halfway with ice water. 
  • Using tongs, remove green beans and potatoes immediately (but leave boiling water right where it is) and transfer to bowl with ice water. 
  • Leave there for 15–20 seconds, or just long enough to chill them completely, then remove from water and pat dry; set aside.
  • Keep the ice water for cooking the eggs.
  • Add eggs to saucepan and cook exactly 8 minutes. 
  • Transfer to ice water bath and let cool 2 minutes. Peel eggs, keeping them submerged in ice bath as you work. 
  • Pat eggs dry and transfer to cutting board.
  • Time to make your dressing: Add 1 Tbsp. mustard, 1 Tbsp. vinegar, and a pinch of sugar to bowl with shallot; season with salt and a generous amount of pepper. 
  • Whisking constantly, slowly stream in remaining 6 Tbsp. oil until you have a thick, emulsified dressing.
  • Arrange lettuce on plates and drizzle with dressing. 
  • Arrange potatoes, green beans, tomatoes, and olives over lettuce. 
  • Cut eggs in quarters and add to plates.
  • Using your hands or a fork, flake off large pieces of salmon and arrange over salad.
  • Drizzle platter with remaining dressing. Season with salt and pepper.
  • ENJOY!

Thursday, 14 July 2022

ROSE HARISSA AUBERGINE & HALLOUMI FLATBREADS WITH HOMEMADE TZATZIKI


This is yet another fabulous and quick dinner for a hot summer's day!

A fluffy flatbread gets topped with homemade tzatziki, rose harissa coated roast aubergine, grilled halloumi, fresh tomatoes, pomegranate seeds and the most scrumptious pickled red onion, to create a sort of open, Middle Eastern inspired wrap.

It's packed full of flavours with minimal cooking involved (no one's got time to make flatbreads from scratch while we have this weather!) and a new quick supper favourite of mine..enjoy!

SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS

ROSE HARISSA AUBERGINE
  • 2 aubergines 
  • 2 tablespoons harissa (belazu rose harissa is best) 
  • 2 tablespoons yogurt 
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil 
  • 1 teaspoon salt 
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

PICKLED RED ONION
  • 1/2 large red onion thinly sliced 
  • 1 teaspoon sugar 
  • 100ml water
  • 100ml red wine vinegar

TZATZIKI
  • 4 tablespoons Greek yogurt
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 100g grated cucumber 
  • 3/4 tablespoon olive oil 
  • Salt to taste 

TO SERVE

METHOD
  • Add your sliced red onion into a bowl and add the rest of the ingredients, leave on the side to pickle while you make the rest. 
  • Pre-heat your oven to 200C fan. 
  • Slice your aubergine lengthways into thin slices about 5cm wide and 1cm thick. 
  • Add them to a mixing bowl with the rest of the ingredients and mix until the aubergine is well coated. 
  • Place aubergine on a baking tray lined with baking paper and space out evenly. 
  • Place in the oven and cook for 20 - 25 minutes flipping over half way through to cook evenly. 
  • Cut your halloumi into thin slices and grill on a non stick pan on medium heat for 1 minute on each side until starting to brown. 
  • Once cooked place on the side, ready to assemble. 
  • Mix together the tzatziki ingredients and place on the side ready to assemble. 
  • Drain the red onions from the mixture and place on the side ready to assemble. 
  • Warm up your flatbreads for a couple of minutes in the oven
  • Assemble your flatbrea -  place 1 tablespoon of tzatziki on the flatbread, then layer on your aubergine, halloumi & pickled onions. 
  • Add pomegranate seeds, mint, cherry tomatoes and salad to serve. 

Tuesday, 12 July 2022

HUEVOS RANCHEROS - THE PERFECT HEATWAVE SUPPER

When it's this hot outside you definitely do not want to spend hours slaving away in an even hotter kitchen, nor is it the weather for heavy, creamy dishes which is why my take on the Mexican classic Huevos Rancheros worked such a treat on a balmy Friday night!

Packed with flavour, more of an assembly than cooking job and pretty much summer on a plate, I can only recommend you make these asap for yourself at home (and if you feel extra suave serve them up with a spicy Marg on the side!).

SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon chilli flakes
  • 1 tin of tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons chipotle paste (I love this one from Waitrose)
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 425 gram tin of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 corn tortillas
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1 green chilli, sliced
  • 50 grams feta, crumbled
  • Coriander leaves and salt and pepper to serve
METHOD
  • Heat oil in a large frypan. 
  • Add the diced onion and fry for 3 minutes over a medium heat. 
  • Add the garlic, smoked paprika, oregano and chilli flakes and fry for a further 2 minutes.
  • Add the tinned tomatoes and chipotle paste, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Pour tomato sauce into a bowl and blitz using a stick blender or regular blender until smooth. 
  • Using the same frypan, fry cumin seeds and garlic for 1 minute. 
  • Add the black beans and 1/4 cup of water. 
  • Cook for 4–5 minutes or until beans are heated through. 
  • Fry eggs until the whites are set. 
  • In a hot pan without any oil, fry tortillas for 1 minute on each side.
  • Top tortillas with black beans, fried egg, tomato sauce, sliced avocado, chillies and feta. 
  • Finish with coriander and salt and pepper.

Thursday, 7 July 2022

LISBOETA - PORTUGESE FLAIR IN FITZROVIA


OMG!

An actual restaurant review on the blog! I have to say post lockdown life has been so busy that I have just about had time to get recipes written up and rather neglected my restaurant reviews and travel guides (I still owe you an updated Stockholm AND Paris foodie guide), but fear not I will use the calmer summer months to make an effort to write more because I have seriously missed it!

My first review after my unplanned hiatus may be a little clunky but bear with me, I will be in the swing of things in NO TIME and luckily Lisboeta was so bloody fantastic that it was a real pleasure to write about my wonderful dinner there!

It took a while to find a dinner spot both me and my favourite dining companion, Henry, could agree on and most importantly one where we could actually get a table (much like the travel sector, restaurants are not ready for the onslaught of post lockdown guests) but I instantly loved the idea of Lisboeta when Henry suggested it.

Indeed the second he mentioned that top chef and legend of the London restaurant scene, Nuno Mendes, was the brains and palette behind Lisboeta I was pretty much sold. 

Mendes has run some of the best restaurant kitchen in London over the years but with Lisboeta he is trying something a little different, bringing a taste of his home country, Portugal, to Fitzrovia and oh BOY does he succeed! 

Lisboeta is vibrant, refreshing, confident and delivers in terms atmosphere, food and service, making my dinner there one of the best restaurant experiences I have had a in a long time!

The space is gorgeous, bright, over three floors and with an impressive open kitchen. It's also bang in the middle of Charlotte street, one of the most quaint and lovely, yet not too touristy streets in central, making it perfect spot if you want dinner in town but want to avoid crowds.

At first glance the menu is a little meat heavy but don't be put off by that. While I wouldn't say it is the most vegetarian friendly spot (even the bread gets served with lard), their fish options are out of this world amazing and made it such a wonderful dining experience.

We started with a couple of small plates which were so packed full of flavour that they could have easily been billed as main courses. The Mushroom Açorda, shared between the two of us, was quite possibly one of the best mushrooms dishes I have ever had - a mix of wild mushrooms is served with the most wonderful egg yolk bread sauce. 

Henry had get some sort of meat fix so had the grilled acorn-fed black pork from the Alentejo with fermented red pepper paste which according to him was a carnivore's dream, while I had the Bacalhau à Brás - confit cod with caramelised onions and thinly sliced crispy potatoes. My god, it was an absolute dream - sophisticated yet satisfying and Henry tried to steal more than just a spoonful once he realised how delicious my choice was.

The main course section is made of platters and pots to share and we simply HAD to have the most hyped dish on the menu, the Arroz de Marisco or red prawn and seafood rice (a sort of rice stew rather than a paella in consistency, and my god did it deliver. 

Served in a clay pot and topped with the most incredible red prawns, it also came with a side of prawn heads which were to be squeezed over for extra flavour. It was utter perfection in its simplicity, full of flavours, beautifully plated up and encapsulating the vibrancy of Portuguese cuisine in one dish. I

It's the sort of dish you will not forget in a hurry and that you will yearn to have again, which also pretty much sums up Lisboeta because it really highlighted what a great restaurant can do and make you feel!

I love cooking and have grown a little tired of eating out but when there is special places like Lisboeta still opening and doing there thing, I realise that the restaurant scene is still out there thriving and worth the effort of hunting down a reservation.


Friday, 24 June 2022

TROUT WITH BUTTERY BROWN SHRIMPS, SAMPHIRE & POTATOES


This little number is the perfect omega 3 packed supper for an early summer's day! The question is when will I get over this new found obsession with samphire because for now I cannot stop cooking with it!

SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS
  • 350g Jersey Royal potato or small Charlotte potatoes - larger ones halved lengthways
  • 2 sea trout fillets, skin on but scales removed
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp sunflower or vegetable oil
  • 200g samphire , well washed
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped shallot
  • 4 tbsp white wine (I used white Burgundy)
  • 100g brown shrimps
  • 1 tarragon sprig, chopped
  • juice 1 lemon
INGREDIENTS
  • Steam the potatoes for 15-20 mins, either using a steamer basket or a simple metal colander over a pan of boiling water, with a lid on top. 
  • Put 3 plates in a low oven to warm.
  • Slash the fish skin a few times, then season generously and sprinkle with the cayenne. 
  • Put a heavy-based frying pan over a medium heat, adding the oil once the pan is hot. 
  • Cook the fish, skin-side down, for 6 mins, until the skin is golden and crisp. Avoid the urge to move it about.
  • Season the fish on the upper side, then carefully turn the fillets using a fish slice or spatula. 
  • Cook for 2 mins more until the fish has changed from dark to pale pink all over, with a little blush remaining in the thickest part. Transfer to a warm plate. 
  • Wipe out the pan with kitchen paper.
  • Scatter the samphire over the cooked potatoes, return the lid and steam for 2-3 mins until just tender.
  • Melt the butter in the frying pan and sizzle the shallot for 1 min. 
  • Splash in the wine, boil to reduce by half, then add the shrimps, 25g of butter, tarragon and lemon juice to taste. 
  • Season to taste.
  • Spoon the veg onto warm plates, drizzle with a little sauce, then top with the fish, the rest of the sauce and the shrimps.

Tuesday, 21 June 2022

A MEXICAN FEAST! SEARED TUNA TACOS WITH PINEAPPLE SALSA & THE BEST CHIPOTLE MUSHROOM TACOS


After the rather fantastic Baja fish tacos I made the other week, I was hungry for more tacos and these two variations blew my mind!

Seared tuna slices (marinated in coriander, chipotle and lime), are layered on top of an avocado crema (avocado blended with chipotle paste and sour cream), the most delicious pineapple salsa, while wonderfully vibrant radishes are added as finishing touch to make one stunning taco, both in taste and look.

And then there were the mushroom tacos!!! My god...they were quite the revelation and "meaty" enough in their flavour and texture to convert even the most committed carnivore.  

Thick slices of portobello mushrooms are marinated in the most wonderful concoction of spices, orange juice and chipotle paste. before they are thrown onto a griddle pan for a proper char which gives them incredible depth of flavour. 

Add some smashed avocado and an irresistible chilli slaw and you get yourself quite the memorable veggie friendly taco!

Both these tacos totally wowed me and were actually also super fun to make! 

Perfect for when you want to impress dinner guests and best served, of course, with a spicy Marg on the side!

SEARED TUNA TACOS

INGREDIENTS

MARINADE
  • 2 tuna steaks
  • 1 chipotle, ground to a rough powder 
  • ½ tsp dried oregano 
  • Zest of 1 lime 
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil 
  • Salt to season 

PICKLED RADISHES
  • 12 radishes, thinly sliced 
  • Juice of ½ lime 
  • SALSA 
  • 1 jalapeno, finely diced 
  • 150g fresh pineapple, diced 
  • Juice and zest of 1 lime 
  • 3 tbsp coriander, finely chopped 

AVOCADO CREMA
  • 2 small ripe avocado 
  • 100ml sour cream 
  • 1 tsp chipotle paste

TO SERVE
  • 150g red cabbage, finely shredded 
  • small tortillas

METHOD
  • Lay the tuna into a shallow tray and sprinkle both sides with chipotle, oregano, lime zest and salt. Drizzle over the olive oil and coat well on both sides.
  • Place the radishes into a small bowl, sprinkle with a little salt and squeeze over the lime juice. Mix well and leave to pickle.
  • Next mix all the ingredients together for the salsa. 
  • Lay the tuna steaks on a hot griddle pan and cook for 1 minute on each side. 
  • Remove from the pan and let them rest up for a couple of minutes on a tray.
  • Meanwhile heat up the tortillas in an oven until they are warm. 
  • Slice the tuna and begin to assemble some tacos.
  • Spoon the avocado crema down first, then cabbage, tuna slices and then the salsa. 
  • Finally sprinkle over some pickled radishes and serve. 

CHIPOTLE MUSHROOM TACOS

INGREDIENTS
  • 6 large portobello mushroomswiped clean
  • 1 ½ tbsp chipotle paste
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp ground coriander
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander leaves and stalks
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil plus more for cooking the mushrooms
  • 4 tbsp orange juice freshly squeezed 
  • 2 tbsp lime juice freshly squeezed 
  • small tortillas
FOR THE CHILLI SLAW
  • ¼ of a medium red cabbage finely shredded
  • ¼ of a medium red onion finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp dried red chilli flakes optional
  • for the smashed avocado
  • 2 ripe avocados peeled and pith removed
  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh coriander/cilantro
  • ½ tsp sea salt
FOR SERVING
  • Lime wedges
  • Feta cheese 
  • Fresh coriander

METHOD
  • Add the 1 and ½ tablespoons of chipotle paste, 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika, ½ a teaspoon of dried oregano, ½ a teaspoon of ground cumin and ½ a teaspoon of ground coriander and ½ teaspoon of sea salt to a bowl and mix well.
  • Add the minced garlic and fresh coriander along with the orange and lime juice to the bowl and whisk well.
  • Add the clean mushrooms to a large freezer bag and pour the marinade into the bag. 
  • Rub the marinade into the mushrooms, be careful not to break the mushrooms.
  • Seal the bag and leave the bag in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  • Mix all the slaw ingredients together in a large bowl and leave in the fridge until you are ready to serve your tacos.
  • Add the peeled avocado to a bowl along with the chopped coriander, lime juice and salt.
  • Using a fork mash the avocado until you have a rough mash.
  • Cover and leave in the fridge until you are ready to make the tacos.
  • Spray a griddle pan with a little oil.
  • Place the mushrooms stalk side down on the pan and cook for about 10 minutes.
  • Turn the mushrooms over and cook for another 10 minutes or until the mushrooms are cooked through. Place a large lid over the pan for this part, it will speed up the cooking of the mushrooms.
  • Depending on the size of your griddle pan you may need to cook the mushrooms in batches. 
  • If so you can keep them warm in a preheated oven.
  • Slice the mushrooms when you are ready to serve.
  • Heat the tortillas up in the oven.
  • Spread a tablespoon of the smashed avocado on one tortilla.
  • Add some of the red cabbage slaw, then top with slices of the cooked mushrooms.
  • Top with a little crumbled feta, a good squeeze of lime and some coriander leaves.
  • ENJOY!

Wednesday, 15 June 2022

CRAB & SAMPHIRE SPAGHETTI WITH CHILLI BREADCRUMBS




I am getting seriously obsessed with samphire, a fleshy green plant that grows along British coastlines and  and is kind of similar to green asparagus, just with a bit more of a salty "sea" taste to it in the best of ways.

Of course being grown close to the sea, samphire works particuarly well when cooked in combination with seafood (like with the seabass I cooked up the other week) and I couldn't help but be intrigued how it would work with crab!

I adore crab spaghetti in any almost any scenario but here it really is taken up a notch when combined with samphire in a white wine (no cream!!) sauce and is even better when topped with a wonderful finishing touch of chilli breadcrumbs.

It's the sort of pasta dish that is zingy, full of flavours yet oh so light, by staying away from any cheese and cream, and is also surprisingly quickly to rustle up considering the very sophisticated dish one ends up with!

Perfect for an early summer supper with a chilled glass of white wine on the side!

SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS
  • 1 + 1/2 tbsp olive oil, plus a glug extra
  • 40g white breadcrumbs
  • 1 + 1⁄2 tsp chilli flakes
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 50g brown crabmeat
  • 80ml white wine
  • Finely grated zest and juice 1⁄2 lemon, plus extra zest and wedges to serve
  • 400g spaghetti
  • 1 pack of samphire (I get mine in Waitrose)
  • 100g white crabmeat
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley

METHOD
  • Heat 1⁄2 tbsp of the oil in a large frying pan and fry the breadcrumbs for 3-4 minutes until just golden and crisp, then season with salt and pepper and stir in the chilli flakes. 
  • Set aside on a plate to cool.
  • Add the remaining oil to the same pan over a medium heat and fry the garlic for 2 minutes, then stir in the brown crabmeat and cook for a minute more. 
  • Add 50ml of the white wine, the lemon zest and juice, cook for another minute, then turn the heat off and keep to hand.
  • Cook the pasta in salted boiling water for 3 minutes, adding the samphire for the final minute, then drain, reserving a cup of pasta water.
  • Add the pasta/samphire to the pan with the brown crabmeat along with a splash of cooking water, then toss until coated. 
  • Stir in the white crabmeat, remaining wine and the parsley, along with an extra glug of olive oil. 
  • Season with black pepper, then serve with the extra lemon zest, a scattering of breadcrumbs and lemon wedges for squeezing.

Tuesday, 31 May 2022

CREAMY SAFFRON & PRAWN PASTA


Saffron and prawns are probably two of my favourite ingredients and this pasta is the perfect carby marriage of the two!

If you can use a mix of shell on and shell off prawns, not only for optics but also for added flavour and make sure to infuse the saffron for a good 15 minutes with the boiling water to to get the most this luxurious and flavourful spice!

An easy peasy, yet delicious and restaurant worthy supper that will not fail to impress.

SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS

METHOD

  • Put a large pan of water onto boil ready for the pasta.
  • Whilst it comes to the boil place the saffron into a small saucepan and pour over the 4 tablespoon of boiling water. 
  • Leave to stand for 10 minutes.
  • Salt the pasta water well, add the linguine and cook the pasta for a minute less than the instructions suggest.
  • Add the cream, parmesan and the lemon zest to the saffron and stir over a medium heat until simmering. Simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the chives, peeled prawns and cook until the prawns are starting to go pink. 
  • Add the shell on prawns so that they can warm through.
  • Check the seasoning.
  • Remove from the heat and stir through the egg yolks (if you don't take the pan from the heat you will end up with a nasty scrambled egg sauce)
  • Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water.
  • Pour the sauce over the pasta and thin with the cooking water as needed.
  • Serve with a garnish of chopped chives.
  • ENJOY!