Monthly Archives: February 2011

Spiced cauliflower with Bill’s ginger pachadi

Part of the flowering greens family, which also includes  “regular”, tenderstem and purple sprouting broccoli and romanesco, cauliflower is available pretty much all year round but at its best in winter.

Although delicious and popular, there are more ways to prepare cauliflower than covered with a cheesy bechamel sauce.

Try adding lightly cooked cauliflower florets to macaroni cheese next time, or bake sprinkled with a mixture of wholemeal breadcrumbs and Parmesan.

When buying, look for caulis with white, tight heads; avoid if discoloured or if they smell strongly.

Cook all varieties as lightly as possible to avoid the unpleasant sulphurous smell and to retain nutrients.

Brown basmati rice is rich in vitamin B and has a low GL (glycemic load) score which means that the energy is released slowly into the bloodstream to help keep your blood sugar levels even.

Broccoli contains substances called sulphurophanes, which have been shown to help remove liver toxins and support the immune system. The combination of ginger, in the recipe below, and the cauliflower is packed with antioxidants.

Sesame seeds are a good source of omega-6 fats and, toasted, have a delicious nutty flavour.

In the delicious and easy recipe below I have used ginger pachadi from Bill’s Produce Store www.billsproducestore.co.uk to add an exotic touch to cauliflower.

 

Pachadis are spice mixtures, popular in South India: use them like I have done here, to flavour vegetables, mix into natural yoghurt and use as a dip or marinade for meat or fish.

This meal, which is really quick to prepare and can be on the table in minutes, serves 2 as a wholesome, vegetarian main course.

This is what you need:

2 generous handfuls of cauliflower florets, cut into bite-size pieces

1 heaped tbsp of Bill’s ginger pachadi

2 tsp turmeric dissolved in 100ml of hot water

1/2 tsp chilli flakes

juice of 1/2 a lime

1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds (toast in a dry, hot frying pan until seeds begin to pop + colour – watch closely as they can burn quickly!)

1 tbsp sunflower oil

2 large free-range hen (or try duck for a wonderfully rich, creamier taste) eggs

half a small bunch of coriander

wholegrain basmati rice, cooked according to the instructions on the packet

This is what you do:

  1. heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium heat
  2. add the cauliflower florets and stir-fry for 2 minutes
  3. add the chilli flakes and ginger pachadi and stir in to mix
  4. add the hot water with turmeric  and lime juice
  5. simmer for 2 minutes; the liquid will almost disappear
  6. in the meantime, break the eggs in a bowl and beat lightly
  7. pour the eggs into the cauliflower mixture, stirring around for 30 seconds or so until the eggs scramble
  8. sprinkle with a ltlle bit of sea salt, chopped coriander + sesame seeds
  9. eat immediately – with the wholegrain basmati rice

Bon appetit!

Monique x

 

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Dinner menu w/c 28th of February

Monday

Baked pancakes with spinach, chestnut mushrooms and Gruyère, served with balsamic roast tomatoes

Tuesday

Moroccan spiced chicken with carrots & chickpeas served with bulghur wheat

Wednesday

Rose harissa griddled lamb leg steaks, Persian spiced pilaff, green beans and minted yoghurt

Thursday

Salmon fillets baked on rosemary roast potatoes, beetroot salad & horseradish-walnut creme fraiche

Friday

Italian baked pollock fillets with tomatoes, potatoes & Kalamata olives, served with purple sprouting broccoli

Saturday

Mixed root & kidney bean borscht & chive cream served with smoked salmon pumpernickel bread

Sunday

Butternut squash, sage and barley risotto with crumbled Roquefort, rocket & toasted pumpkin seed salad

Supper menu w/c 21st of February

Monday

Spiced cauliflower with scrambled eggs, wholegrain basmati rice & toasted almonds

Tuesday

Griddled chicken thighs with roast fennel, new potatoes & preserved lemon

Wednesday

 Pan-fried trout fillets  with Puy lentils, roast tomatoes & salsa verde

Thursday

Greek style chicken fillets with a zesty Feta topping, tenderstem broccoli and rice

Friday

Veal & spinach cannelloni with a chunky tomato sauce, rocket  & Parmesan salad

Saturday

Winter minestrone with parsley & walnut pesto, toasted sourdough

Sunday

Rice pilau with oyster, chestnut mushrooms & toasted hazelnuts, served with a green salad

Fragrant, seductive & elegant Valentine’s Day menu

Sweets for my sweet ...

Love it ….. or don’t love it, it’s Valentine’s Day on Monday!

If nothing else, it’s an opportunity to make a certain person feel special, be kind to ourselves and practice a bit of self-love,  spend time with loving people or …  simply eat delicious food!

Rose & orange blossom dark chocolate Smyrna figs stuffed with almonds

This is what’ll be cooking chez nous:

Griddled haloumi with chicory and pomegranate

***

Braised cod cheeks with walnut dukkah and sumac onions

Zesty, herby bulghur wheat

***

Mini ginger & rhubarb Pavlovas

 And these moreish stuffed figs to nibble on with an espresso or verveine (depending on how full we are!).

Made with love xxx

And remember, love is contagious!

Happy Valentine’s Day & bon appetit,

Monique x

Dinner menu w/c 14th of February

Monday

Big curry noodle pot with udon noodles, roasted peanuts and coriander

Tuesday

Baked plaice fillets with a tapenade, tomato and wilted spinach filling, served with rice

Wednesday

Moroccan spiced chicken with roast winter vegetable bulghur wheat and  minted yoghurt

Thursday

Trout fillets with an oat & mustard crust, roast beetroot salad, boiled Charlotte potatoes and chive cream

Friday

Tofu baked with curried leeks and cherry tomatoes, served with wholegrain basmati rice and toasted almonds

Saturday

Rustic sweet pepper soup, served with chopped avocado, tortilla chips, chillies and lime

Sunday

Chinese style noodles with Lapsang Souchong tea-marinated lamb, tenderstem broccoli and toasted sesame seeds

Dinner menu w/c 7th of February

Monday

Butternut squash, sage & blue cheese barley risotto, watercress & toasted pumpkin salad

Tuesday

Smoked haddock gratin, wilted spinach & Charlotte potatoes

Wednesday

Spiced baked chicken thighs with preserved lemon yoghurt, basmati rice & chard

Thursday

Penne with Chianti baked Aberdeen Angus beef meatballs, chunky tomato sauce, rocket & Parmesan salad

Friday

Honey & chilli salmon fillets on courgette & coriander soba noodles with toasted sesame seeds

Saturday

Curried cauliflower & quinoa pilaff with  fried duck eggs

Sunday

Aromatic lamb with sticky apricots, served with couscous & green beans