Posted in Food, Vegetarian, tagged Beetroot, Cooking, Denis Cotter, Food, Haloumi, Lentils, Recipe, Salad, Vegetarian on 7 November 2011 |
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We’ve admired Denis Cotter from afar and when we got his new cookbook devoured it as usual. What we found was that each recipe had loads of component which built up a brilliant spectrum of flavours, and yet appeared so complex that unless you have time and patience (and sometimes the ingredients too) you’d rarely make the dishes. This one is an exception as it really comes together quite easily and the flavours are superb. We are definitely encouraged and will try more!
Spiced haloumi on a warm Puy lentil, spinach & beetroot salad – to serve 4
- 2 medium beetroot, washed, cooked and peeled (we boiled ours for about 25 minutes)
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- olive oil
- 200ml vegetable stock
- 100ml red wine
- 100g Puy lentils (we used Beluga)
- 2 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 4 garlic cloves, sliced
- 4 scallions, thinly sliced
- 2 dried bird’s eye chillies, ground (or less if you prefer)
- 2 1/2 tsp cumin seeds, ground
- finely grated zest of 1 lime and juice of 2
- 200g haloumi cheese, cut into 8 slices
- 100g baby spinach leaves
Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas mark 4.
Slice the beetroot into thin wedges, toss with the balsamic vinegar and a little olive oil and roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes, until starting to caramelise.
Meanwhile, bring the vegetable stock and red wine to the boil in a large pan. Add the lentils, thyme and garlic, and simmer for 15-20 minutes, uncovered, until the lentils are just tender but still firm. If there is any liquid left, turn the heat up and boil until it is almost gone. Stir in the roast beetroot and scallions, and remove from the heat. Season with salt and pepper.
Mix the chillies, cumin and lime zest together. Halve the haloumi slices diagonally.
Heat a little olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat and fry the haloumi until browned on both sides. Sprinkle the spice mix and juice of 1 of the limes over the cheese and toss to coat.
Place some spinach on each plate and scatter some of the lentil mix over. Arrange the haloumi slices on top and finish with the remaining lime juice.
(Original recipe from Denis Cotter’s For the love of Food, Collins, 2011.)
Wine Suggestion: You need something that’s earthy for the beetroot and lentils but also fruity and juicy to balance the heat of the spices. Try a Chilean red made from the Carmenere grape which is an emerging match for spicy food (including Indian curry!).
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This is a masterful demonstration of how to balance sweet, nutty, peppery and sharp flavours and the soft, creamy, crunchy and slippery textures. If you want to really show off you can use a mixture of golden and red beetroot, but this dish is just as nice using the regular red beetroot. We wish we could claim it as our own but it’s another gem from Yotam Ottolenghi.
Roasted beetroot – to serve 4
- 500g golden beetroot
- 500g red beetroot
- 80g sunflower seeds
- 90ml maple syrup
- 4 tbsp sherry vinegar
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 20g chervil leaves
- 60g baby chard, baby spinach or rocket
- coarse sea salt and black pepper
Preheat the oven to 200ºC/Gas Mark 6. Wash the beetroot and wrap them individually in foil. Bake for anything between 40 and 90 minute. Ours came in a bag of all different sizes so we gradually took them out of the oven as they felt tender when pierced with a sharp knife.
Spread the sunflower seeds out on in an ovenproof dish and toast along with the beetroot for 8 minutes or until lightly coloured.
Let the beetroot cool a little before peeling with a sharp knife (gloves are highly recommended!). Cut them into halves, quarters or dice. Mix with the rest of the ingredients in a large bowl. Toss well and then taste: Yotam advises that you should get a clear sweetness balanced by enough salt. Adjust the seasoning as required and serve.
(Original recipe from Ottolenghi: the cookbook by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi, Ebury Press, 2008.)
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Here’s a really lovely side dish. Good with roasts or grilled meat.
Hot buttered beetroot – to serve 6
- 3 medium beetroot, trimmed but not peeled
- 25g butter
- 1 tbsp chopped thyme leaves.
Cook the beetroot in a large pan of boiling salted water for 20-25 minutes or until tender. Allow to cool slightly, then peel off the skins – gloves are advisable! Chop the beetroot.
Melt the butter in a frying pan. Add the thyme and cook for a minute before adding the beetroot and tossing to coat in the butter.
(Original recipe by Tom Kerridge in BBC Good Food Magazine, October 2011)
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We barbecue all year round like eejits and when our butcher Tom (O’Toole’s in Glasthule) produced these fabulous pork chops we were powerless to resist – complete with crackling and everything!
Jono mixed together some coarse chopped rosemary from our balcony, a big fat garlic clove and plenty of salt and pepper. He pounded and ground this for a few minutes and then added enough olive oil to make a paste to smear on the chops – you want the mixture to stick on the chops so go easy on the oil.
While Jono barbecued the chops outside I made this tasty remoulade. Celeriac remoulade is in lots of my Mum’s old cookbooks from the seventies and it looks a bit like creamy coleslaw – this is Nigel Slater’s much lighter and fresher take on the whole thing (Tender Vol 1). Makes heaps for a side dish which means you can take some to work for lunch too.
- juice of half a lemon
- about 500g of celeriac
- a raw beetroot – medium size
- 4 heaped tbsp creme fraiche
- 2 tsp grainy mustard
- olive or walnut oil
- a small handful of parsley leaves
- enough walnut halves to sprinkle over the top
- Put the lemon juice in a big mixing bowl.
- Peel the celeriac and grate it coarsely – we used the Magimix which grated it quite fine and it worked well.
- Toss the grated celeriac with the lemon juice in the bowl to stop it from turning brown.
- Grate the beetroot (also best done in the processor to avoid purple hands) and to the celeriac but don’t mix it in yet.
- Mix the creme fraiche, mustard and some seasoning in a bowl. Gently mix in enough oil to make a coating consistency (2-3 tbsps).
- Roughly chop the parsley and add to the sauce before folding it gently into the vegetables, don’t mix too hard or it will all turn very pink.
- Toast the walnuts lightly in a non-stick pan and scatter them over the salad.
Tip: Don’t make this on a first date as you’ll have mucky hands and faces by the time you’ve finished sucking the bones – delicious!
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This is the first of three side dishes which we served with a delicious baked ham (scroll down to see the other dishes and final result).
If you are having guests between now and Christmas we highly recommend this tasty menu (much of which can be prepared in advance). We served this up on a Friday night after work, as part of the Irish Foodies Christmas Cookalong, and it was entirely hassle free.
We boiled the ham and roasted the beetroot the night before.
Menu to serve 8:
- Ginger beer & tangerine glazed ham
- Roasted beetroot with watercress & horseradish apple sauce
- Chilli & tangerine braised lentils
- Roasted cauliflower with garlic, bay & lemon
Roasted beetroot with watercress & horseradish apple sauce (to feed 8 as a side dish)
1kg raw unpeeled beetroot
2 apples, peeled and chopped
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp cider or red wine vinegar
6 tbsp freshly grated horseradish
4 tbsp soured cream
- Heat oven to 180C (gas 6). Leave the beetroot whole – wash and pat dry.
- Wrap individually in foil and roast until tender (1-2 hours depending on how big they are). Cool in the foil before peeling.
- Heat a small frying pan and toss in the apples with the sugar and a tbsp of water. Cover and cook until mushy. Remove from the heat, add the vinegar and whizz in a food processor (or use a hand blender).
- Stir the horseradish and sour cream into the sauce and season with salt.
- To serve, cut the beetroot into wedges, put in a bowl and mix with the sauce. Serve on a bed of watercress.
Click here for original recipe from BBC Good Food.
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