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Posts Tagged ‘Red onion’

We are working are way through every recipe we can find that uses black limes, having finally found some without having to resort to mail order. It is all such a hassle now that we’re not all Europeans as some of our sources are in the UK. The sauce is truly delicious and you will need flatbreads for mopping it all up. Some rice would be good too but not essential.

Wine Suggestion: Black limes have such an introverted and complex character you can’t just match it with anything, but do look for wines that have either lime flavours or a savoury, umami texture. Combine this with the pickle and we had a conundrum. We solved it with Pajzos’ Hárslevelu dry Tokaji whose lime-leaf, savoury character plus a little residual sugar (despite the dry finish) came to the rescue.

Black lime tofu with spinach and pink pickled onions – serves 4

  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp caster sugar
  • 1 small red onion, very thinly sliced into rounds
  • 600ml sunflower oil, for deep-frying
  • 2 blocks of extra-firm tofu (560g), patted dry and cut into 2cm cubes
  • 2 tbsp cornflour
  • 2 onions, roughly chopped
  • 6 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
  • 60ml olive oil
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds, roughly crushed in a pestle and mortar
  • 2-3 dried black limes, grind to a powder using a spice grinder you need about 2 tbsp (if you don’t have a spice grinder you can whizz in a food processor, then sieve)
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 20g flatleaf parsley, roughly chopped
  • 250g baby spinach

Make the pink pickled onions first by mixing the vinegar, 1 tsp of sugar, the red onion and tsp of salt in a small bowl. Set aside while you make everything else.

Heat the sunflower oil in a sauté pan or wok. Toss the tofu in a bowl with the cornflour until coated. When the oil is hot, fry the tofu in two batches until crispy and lightly browned, about 6 minutes, then transfer to a paper-lined plate.

Meanwhile, make the sauce. Put the onions and garlic in a food processor and pulse until finely minced but not puréed. Heat the oil in a large sauté pan over a medium-high heat. Add the onion mixture and cook for about 10 minutes, until softened and lightly browned. Add the cumin, black limes and tomato purée and cook for another minute. Add 400ml water, 1tsp of sugar, 1 1/4 tsp of salt and lots of black pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook for 6 minutes, until rich and thick. Add the crispy tofu, parsley and more black pepper and stir. Gradually stir in the spinach until just wilted.

Serve in a shallow dish with the pink pickled onions spooned over.

(Original recipe from Ottolenghi Flavour by Yotam Ottolenghi and Ixta Belfrage, Ebury Press, 2020.)

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Chicken with an agrodulce sauce

A quick and healthy Italian-style sweet & sour dish for midweek. We weren’t completely sure about the celery but it smells amazing in the pan with the red onions and tastes perfect in the finished dish. Serve with new potatoes and a green salad or steamed tenderstem broccoli.

Wine Suggestion: We served this with a fuller Italian white, the l’Insolito by Michele Biancardi from Puglia. This is made from Minitolo which used to be thought of as a sub-variety of Fiano. Honeysuckle and white flower aromatics are tempered by a good citrus twist … sort of like the agrodulce.

Chicken with Agrodolce Sauce – serves 2

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 1 tbsp flour, well-seasoned with salt and pepper
  • 1 red onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • 3 celery stalks, thinly sliced
  • 100g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • a small handful of flat-leaf parsley, chopped

Slice the chicken breasts in half horizontally. Cover the 4 pieces of chicken with baking paper and flatten gently with a rolling pin. Dust the chicken pieces with the seasoned flour shaking off any excess.

Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a non-stick frying pan and brown the chicken really well, then remove from the pan. Throw the onion and celery into the pan now and cook for about 3 minutes, then season. Add the tomatoes and cook for another few minutes or until they start to break down, then add the vinegar and sugar.

Return the chicken to the pan and cook for 3-4 minutes or until cooked through, then stir in the parsley.

Serve with green salad or steamed broccoli and some new potatoes if you like.

(Original recipe by Jennifer Joyce IN: BBC Olive Magazine, April 2009.)

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This is one of our hearty dinners from the 5:2 diet we are on and it was very welcome this evening after getting in from the rain and cold. Full of flavour and filling despite the low calories!

Chicken, Red Onion and Mushroom Stew with Sherry and Butterbeans, serves 4

  • 6 Chicken thighs, skinned and boned then quartered
  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 2 red onions, cut into thick wedges
  • 200g chestnut mushrooms, thickly sliced
  • 100ml dry sherry
  • 400ml chicken stock
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 400g tin butterbeans, drained and rinsed
  • small bunch parsley, chopped

Heat a little olive oil to a medium-high heat in a pan and add the chicken, browning until golden on all sides.

Add the paprika, garlic onions and mushrooms and cook until the onions and mushrooms have softened. This should take about 5 minutes.

Add the sherry and scrape the bottom of the pan for a second to deglaze, then add the chicken stock, tomatoes and butterbeans.

Bring to a boil then turn down and simmer for 15 minutes.

Serve with the parsley sprinkled over the top and some crusty bread if you like.

Wine suggestion: If you feel like a glass with this we’d suggest trying a red from Navarra, an under-rated region in Spain. The balance of juiciness and structure would work with the simple, smokey and rustic flavours of the dish.

(Original recipe from BBC Good Food)

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We were up in Belfast for the weekend which always means over-indulgence and I then flew to Birmingham for a conference and ate very boring and fatty food – what a waste!

This was a much needed healthy dinner and yet again I had succumbed to M&S reduced tuna steaks (I just can’t help myself when it comes to food bargains!).

This reads fairly dull but actually it was really tasty. I’m not a big fan of red onions (like I usually poke them out of a salad) but the way these are macerated with the lemon juice really takes the sting and sharpness out of them.

Highly recommended for when you feel like something healthy and tasty (or if you have to use them cheapo tuna fillets you bought).

I found this recipe in another of my old BBC Good Food magazines.

Hot mustard tuna with herby couscous (serves 4 though we halved it very successfully)

  • Put a finely sliced red onion in a little bowl with the zest and juice of a lemon and some seasoning – leave to soak for about 5 minutes to soften the onion a bit.
  • Put 250g of couscous into a large bowl and pour over 400ml of hot vegetable stock, cover with cling film and leave for 10 minutes.
  • Season 4 tuna steaks, brush with 1 tbsp olive oil, then pat 2 tsps of English mustard powder over them.
  • When the couscous is ready, add a bunch of roughly chopped flat parsley and 2 tbsp of capers to the onions – give it a good stir before mixing into the couscous with a fork.
  • Heat a griddle pan and sear the tuna steaks for a minute on each side (more if you don’t like it rareish).
  • Serve with lemon wedges.

Julie

Original recipe can be found here: http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/4839/hot-mustard-tuna-with-herby-couscous

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