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Posts Tagged ‘Lunch’

Fig & Gorgonzolha Tartines

September is when you start to find some juicy figs. These easy tartines show them off perfectly.

Wine Suggestion: A young, fruity Pinot Noir often springs to mind when pairing with figs, but bringing in the Gorgonzola made us swing to a white variant of this grape: Pinot Gris. Our choice was from Forrest Estate in Marlborough, New Zealand and it was fresh and full of joyous fruit to match the mood of this dish.

Fig & Gorgonzola Tartines – serves 6

  • 6 thin slices sourdough
  • 2-3 tbsp of truffle or flower honey
  • 1 tsp thyme leaves
  • 6 slices gorgonzola
  • 5 ripe figs, sliced into 4

Toast the sourdough and spread each slice with a little of the honey and sprinkle with some thyme leaves. Lay a slice of gorgonzola on each and squash down a bit with knife so it reaches the edges of the toast.

Put the tartines under a hot grill for a few minutes until the cheese just starts to melt.

Arrange the fig slices on top, sprinkle with a little salt, some black pepper and more thyme, then grill again for a couple of minutes and drizzle with some more honey before serving.

(Original recipe by Lulu Grimes IN: Olive Magazine, September 2013.)

Figs

 

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Carrot & cumin soup

It seems to be getting more and more difficult to buy a carrot, with supermarkets in particular insisting that you buy a huge bag. Why can’t we be like France and just have troughs of veg for us to pick what we need from? This is a suitable end for almost a whole bag of carrots.

Carrot & Cumin Soup – serves 6

  • 35g butter
  • 600g carrots, chopped
  • 110g onion, chopped
  • 150g potatoes, peeled and cut into 1cm cubes
  • 2 tsp freshly roasted and crushed cumin seeds
  • pinch of sugar
  • 1.2 litres light chicken or vegetable stock
  • a little creamy milk (optional)
  • crème fraîche or yoghurt (to garnish)
  • coriander leaves, chopped

Melt the butter until foaming, then add the chopped vegetables. Season with salt, pepper and sugar and add the crushed cumin. Cover with a butter paper and a tight fitting lid. Leave to sweat over a low heat for about 10 minutes.

Remove the lid, add the stock and boil until the vegetables or soft – about 5 to 8 minutes, then purée the soup until smooth. Taste and adjust the seasoning.

Serve in warm bowls with a swirl of crème fraîche or yoghurt if you like and some freshly chopped coriander.

(Original recipe from Darina Allen’s Ballymaloe Cookery Course, Kyle Cathie Ltd., 2001.)

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New potato & Pecorino frittata

Not much to say about this. Easy, tasty, not too bad for you, cheap…

New Potato & Pecorino Frittata – serves 4

  • 600g new potatoes
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1  onion, finely sliced
  • 8 eggs
  • 2 tbsp snipped chives
  • 100g pecorino/Parmesan, finely grated

Cook the potatoes in boiling salty water for 15-20 minutes or until cooked. Allow to cool a bit, then slice.

Heat the oil in a heavy non-stick frying pan. Add the onions and cook for about 5 minutes, they should be soft and starting to brown.

Meanwhile whisk the eggs and chives together in a bowl. Season generously then add the grated cheese and whisk again.

Get the grill on and let it come up to a moderate heat. Add the potato slices to the onions and pour over the egg mixture. Cook over a low heat until the edges start to firm up and the eggs are set lightly. This could take up to 10 minutes.

Put under the grill (not too close to the heat) and cook for a couple of minutes or until the eggs are set and the top is golden brown.

Works for lunch or weeknight dinner with some salad on the side.

(Original recipe from BBC Good Food)

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Spinach omelette chapati wrap

This dish makes a really tasty lunch and is a great use for leftover chapatis. Kids will like them too!

Spinach Omelette Chapati Wraps – serves 4

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4 scallions, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 50g mature cheddar, roughly grated
  • 2 thin ham slices, cut into strips
  • 100g baby spinach leaves
  • 4 chapatis

Heat a little of the oil in a non-stick 20cm frying pan. Add a quarter of the scallions and cook gently for a few minutes. Add ¼ tsp of the garam masala and cook for about 30 seconds.

Add a quarter of the beaten egg and tip the pan to cover the base – cook for 1 minute until the base is golden. Sprinkle over a quarter of the cheese, ham and spinach, cover with a lid and cook for another minute or until the spinach is just wilted and the cheese melted.

Meanwhile, heat a chapati in the microwave for 30 seconds or in a dry frying pan. Tip the omelette out on top of the warm chapati and roll up. Repeat with the rest of the ingredients to make 3 more wraps.

(Original recipe from BBC Good Food)

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Charentais Melon Salad

We’re just back from a camping trip to the Loire Valley and this is one of the many delicious things we prepared at our tent. We brought Rick Stein’s French Odyssey along for inspiration and have him to thank for this fabulous summer salad. Make it for a starter or light lunch with some French bread to mop the plate.  A glass of white wine is also obligatory.

Wine Suggestion: We’d found a gem of a wine in the Chateau Moncontour Vouvray Sec which hit the spot with this dish. A lively and dry Chenin Blanc which had fresh appley fruit, and a crispness and minerality that worked with the Chèvre and sweetness of the melon. Summer in a glass as well as on the plate.

Charentais Melon Salad – serves 4

  • 1/2 a ripe, orange-fleshed melon (Charentais or Cantaloup)
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 225g vine ripened tomatoes (skinned if you like – we didn’t bother)
  • 100g firm, crumbly goat’s cheese
  • 1 tbsp finely shredded mint

For the dressing:

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • Pinch caster sugar

Whisk the oil, vinegar, sugar and some salt and pepper together to make the dressing (a fork in a mug will do the trick if you’re short on utensils).

Cut the melon into four wedges and scoop out the seeds. Remove the skin and slice each wedge into long thin slices.

Peel the cucumber and slice into 3mm thick wedges. Slice the tomatoes.

Arrange the sliced melon on a large serving platter and cover with the cucumber and tomatoes. Crumble the goat’s cheese over the top and scatter over the mint. Spoon over the dressing and serve.

(Original recipe from Rick Steins’s French Odyssey, BBC Books, 2005).

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Warm asparagus & new potato salad

We made this back in June when local asparagus was available, but have been very lax getting posts up on the blog (must do better!). We really enjoyed the combination here and  the addition of our own, home-grown mint, dill and chives really made the dish sing.

Warm Asparagus & New Potato Salad – serves 4

  • 350g small Jersey potatoes, scrubbed or peeled if you prefer
  • salt
  • 2 large mint sprigs
  • 25g unsalted butter
  • 250g asparagus tips
  • hearts of 2 round lettuces, leaves separated, washed and dried
  • Maldon salt
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, shelled
  • handful of chervil sprigs – we used dill

FOR THE BUTTER SAUCE: 

  • juice of 1 lemon
  • pinch of caster sugar
  • 75g cold unsalted butter, cut into small chunks
  • freshly ground white pepper
  • 1 tbsp snipped chives

Simmer the potatoes in lightly salted water, with the mint, until tender. Drain over a bowl and reserve the cooking water. Return the potatoes to the pan with the butter, stir together and keep warm.

For the sauce, use a large shallow stainless steel or enamel saucepan and squeeze in the lemon juice. Add 6 tbsp of the potato cooking water and the sugar, then simmer until reduced by half. Slowly incorporate the butter, a chunk at a time, whisking over a very low heat until homogenous (you’re aiming for a light butter sauce). Season with white pepper and keep warm.

Peel the asparagus tips from just below the bud and slice in half lengthways. Add to a pan of boiling well-salted water and boil for about 1-2 minutes – you want them just tender but not raw, then drain.

Slice the warm potatoes and add them, along with the asparagus, to the butter sauce. Turn gently with the chives, until everything is nicely coated.

Arrange the lettuce on 4 plates and divide the asparagus and potatoes between them. Sprinkle with Maldon salt and grate over the egg. Generously scatter with the chervil or dill.

(Original recipe from The Vegetarian Option by Simon Hopkinson, Quadrille, 2009.)

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Celery and blue cheese are the type of things we often have lurking in the back of the fridge. Here’s one of our favourite recipes for using it up.

Enough soup for 4 people:

  • Chop a large head of celery, peel and roughly chop an onion and half a head of celeriac.
  • Melt a thick slice of butter in a big pot, add your chopped veg and cook for around 20 minutes, until soft.
  • Pour in 1 litre chicken stock and add a bay leaf. Bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer for half an hour, stirring now and then.
  • Blend until smooth and check the seasoning (you probably won’t need much salt as you’ll be adding salty cheese). We like to pass through a sieve too for a smooth, silky consistency.
  • Serve with blue cheese crumbled over the top.

You could probably add a swirl of cream too if you’ve some of that.

Original recipe from one of our favourite cookbooks: Nigel Slater’s Tender Volume I.

 

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