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Posts Tagged ‘Spicy’

Middle Eastern Shepherd's Pie with Spiced Parsnip Crust

Diana Henry’s book, Food from Plenty, is great for recipes that use leftovers. For this one we used a large amount of leftover lamb shoulder that had been roasted for hours on the bone in a spicy marinade. The leftover lamb was tasty as it was but was totally transformed in this recipe – super spicy and delicious! Don’t be tempted to skip the spicy onion topping.

Wine Suggestion: a medium bodied, juicy and youthful red with not too many tannins. Luigi Pira’s Barbera d’Alba was perfect, as was a quirky, earthy Poulsard from Stephane Tissot from the Arbois in eastern France … we had a few people over, so could try a few different wines which was fun.

Middle Eastern shepherd’s pie with spiced parsnip crust – serves 6

FOR THE MEAT:

  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • 800g leftover cooked lamb, cut into small chunks
  • 2 onions, roughly chopped
  • 2 celery sticks, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 6 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tbsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground mixed spice
  • 3 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 300ml chicken stock or lamb stock
  • grated zest and juice of 1 orange
  • 75g raisins, soaked in boiling water for 15 minutes and drained
  • 6 tbsp tomato purée
  • 75g pine nuts, toasted

FOR THE PARSNIP CRUST:

  • 450g floury potatoes, cut into chunks
  • 950g parsnips, chopped
  • 50g butter
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp cayenne pepper (this will make a very spicy mash so use less if you like)
  • 50ml whipping cream

FOR THE SPICED ONION TOPPING:

  • 2 onions, very finely sliced
  • 15g butter
  • 1½ tsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely sliced
  • 3 tsp soft dark brown sugar
  • good squeeze of lemon juice
  • a small bunch of coriander or mint, roughly chopped

Heat the oil in a large casserole and brown the lamb, then scoop the lamb out and set aside.

Add the onions, celery and carrots to the same pan and cook until golden. Add the garlic and spices and continue to cook for another minute. Return the lamb to the pan and add the flour. Stir for a minute, then add the stock, zest, juice, raisins and tomato purée. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 45 minutes. You will need to keep stirring now and then to prevent the mixture from sticking. It should be thick but if it looks dry add a little more stock. Add the pine nuts.

Boil the potatoes and parsnips separately until soft. Drain the potatoes, then cover with a tea towel and  lid and allow to dry out over a low heat. Drain the parsnips and add to the potatoes. Heat the butter for the crust in a large saucepan with the spices. Add the potatoes and parsnips and mash, then add the cream and season to taste.

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4.

Spoon the lamb into a large pie dish, spread the mash on top and bake in the oven for 25 minutes or until golden and bubbling.

Meanwhile, fry the onions for the topping in the butter and oil until golden. Turn up the heat and keep cooking until starting to crisp. Add the cinnamon, chilli, salt, some salt & pepper, and sugar. Cook until slightly caramelised, then squeeze over the lemon juice and mix in the herbs. Pile the onions on top of the pie to serve.

(Original recipe from Food from Plenty by Diana Henry, Mitchell Beazley, 2011.)

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Bobotie

We made this on the first dark night after the clocks changed. A delicious spicy baked dish from South Africa that we had heard of many times but never tasted. Definitely give this one a go as the flavours are fantastic.

Wine Suggestion: An old favourite provided the match tonight: the Secateurs Red by Adi Badenhorst. A Shiraz, Cinsault & Grenache blend, this shows how Swartland holds it’s own against similar Southern Rhone wines; a juicy and spicy red with class.

Bobotie – serves 6

  • butter, for greasing
  • 4 tbsp of olive oil
  • 3 onions, peeled and chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1½ tsp mustard seeds
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • ½ tsp chilli flakes
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 ½ tsp garam masala
  • 1kg beef or lamb mince (we used lamb)
  • 100ml red-wine or cider vinegar
  • 100g flaked almonds
  • 120g raisins
  • 50g fresh breadcrumbs
  • 75g fruit chutney (we used Crossogue Preserves’ Irish Harvest Fruit Chutney)

For the topping:

  • 3 eggs
  • 500ml full-fat milk
  • 3 bay leaves

Heat the oven to 180C/160fan/gas 4.

Grease a large baking dish and set aside.

Warm a large, wide casserole over a medium heat and add three tablespoons of oil.

Add the onion, season with salt and pepper, and sweat for 10 minutes, until soft. Stir in the garlic, bay leaves and spices and cook for another few minutes. Tip the mixture into a bowl and set aside.

Put the pan back over the heat and add a tablespoon of oil. Season the meat with salt and pepper and brown in the hot pan in batches, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon and cooking until dark. When the meat is all browned put it all back in to the pan and add the vinegar, almonds and raisins.

Turn the heat down low and simmer for five minutes. Remove from the the heat, stir in the breadcrumbs and chutney and check the seasoning. Tip the mixture into the greased baking dish, level the top with the back of a spoon and leave to cool for 5-10 minutes.

Beat together the eggs and milk and pour over the meat. Scatter over the bay leaves, then bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the top is golden and the custard just set. We served with brown rice and Tenderstem broccoli.

(Original recipe by Thomasina Myers in the Guardian, 21 Oct 2019)

Bobotie

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Pepper crusted Salmon with garlic chickpeasWe really liked this simple fish dish and the garlic chickpeas are delicious! Nice and easy for a Friday night.

Wine Suggestion: We opened a Muscadet, as it was in the fridge and they typically work with fish and seafood. That said we weren’t sure it would hold up to the stronger salmon, pepper and spices but were refreshingly surprised at how it more than held it’s own.

Pepper-crusted salmon with garlic & chickpeas – serves 4

  • 4 skinless salmon fillets, about 150g
  • 2 tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • grated zest and juice of 2 limes
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

FOR THE CHICKPEAS:

  • 2 x 400g tins chickpeas
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 150ml vegetable stock
  • 130g bag baby spinach

Heat oven to 190C/Fan 170C/Gas 5.

Put the salmon into a shallow ovenproof dish in a single layer. Roughly crush the peppercorns with a pestle and mortar, then mix with the paprika, lime zest and some sea salt.

Brush the salmon lightly with oil, then sprinkle over the pepper mix. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until the salmon is just cooked.

Meanwhile, drain the chickpeas and rinse well under cold water, then drain. Heat the oil in a pan, then add the garlic and cook gently for 5 minutes without browning. Add the chickpeas and stock and warm gently. Crush the chickpeas lightly with a potato masher, then add the spinach and stir well until the leaves are wilted. Add the lime juice and some salt and pepper, then heat through before serving with the salmon. Serve a lime wedge on the side if you like.

(Original recipe by Dhruv Baker in BBC Good Food Magazine, December 2008.)

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Spiced Meatballs in tomato sauce

We weren’t so sure about the cinnamon in this meatball recipe but it added a delicious warmth so don’t be tempted to leave it out or reduce the quantity. Much satisfied slurping!

Wine Suggestion: Tuscany beckons for this dish and the juicy red fruits of Morellino won this time to good effect. The MorisFarms (Spanish heritage but longtime settled in the Maremma in Tuscany) Morellino for our mind hits the spot and has an honesty and vitality of winemakers clearly part of their landscape. Bright red fruits and a delightful juiciness that only coastal Tuscany can deliver.

Spiced meatballs in tomato sauce – serves 6

FOR THE SAUCE:

  • 2 x 400g tins cherry tomatoes
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 4 oregano sprigs, strip off the leaves and discard the stalks
  • ½ tbsp tomato purée
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp soft light brown sugar

FOR THE MEATBALLS:

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and chopped
  • 900g beef mince
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 tsp ground mixed spice
  • 3 tbsp finely chopped parsley
  • Cooked pasta to serve (allow 100g per person) .

Make the sauce first. Put all the ingredients into a saucepan together and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes. Stir occasionally and add a bit of water if necessary. Taste and season.

For the meatballs, heat 1 tbsp of oil in a pan and cook the onion until soft and pale gold. Add the garlic and chilli, and cook for another 90 seconds or so. Put the cooked onion mixture into a bowl with the beef, spices and parsley and season really well. Use wet hands to form the mince into pingpong ball sized meatballs.

Heat the rest of the oil in a frying pan and brown the meatballs in batches. They don’t need to be cooked the whole way through at this stage just nicely browned on the outside. Return all the meatballs to the pan, add the tomato sauce and cook for 10-15 minutes.

Stir the cooked pasta and meatballs together in a warm shallow bowl and serve.

(Original recipe from Food From Plenty by Diana Henry, Mitchell Beazley, 2010.)

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Haloumi with spiced chickpeas & spinach

This is a super simple and fresh weeknight meal for two. Halloumi cheese always feels like a bit of a treat.

Spiced Chickpeas with Halloumi – serves 2

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 chilli, deseeded and finely chopped or ½tsp chilli powder
  • 2 tsp finely chopped fresh root ginger
  • 400g tin chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 200g bag baby spinach
  • 3 roasted red peppers from a jar
  • half a 250g pack of halloumi cheese, drained
  • juice of 1 lemon

Heat the oil in a pan and gently fry the chilli and ginger for 1 minute. Stir in the chickpeas, spinach and peppers, then season. Cover and cook gently for a few minutes, stirring not and then, until the spinach has wilted and the chickpeas are warmed through.

Meanwhile, heat a non-stick frying pan until very hot. Cut the halloumi into 6 slices and fry quickly for a minute or 2 on each side. Stir the lemon juice into the chickpeas and divide between 2 plates. Top with the halloumi and serve.

(Original recipe from BBC Good Food)

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Spiced Potatoes with Spinach

This is a great Friday or week-night dish which you can easily eat on it’s own, preferably in front of the TV!

Potatoes with Spices & Spinach – serves 3

  • 800g large floury potatoes, cut into large pieces
  • 5 banana shallots, peeled and halved lengthways
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 1 tsp of crushed garlic
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 2 tsps sea salt flakes
  • 4 tbsp groundnut oil
  • a couple of large handfuls spinach
  • plain yoghurt
  • fresh coriander

Preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6.

Cook the potatoes in plenty of salted boiling water for about 15 minutes or until almost tender.

Drain the potatoes and put them in a bowl. Add the shallots and toss with the cayenne, chilli flakes, garlic, cumin and turmeric. Add the salt and oil, then tip into a roasting tin and bake for about 30 minutes or until crisp.

Wash the spinach leaves and put into a pan over a moderate heat, cover with a lid and leave for a couple of minutes to wilt.

Toss the spinach with the potatoes and garnish with a little yoghurt and coriander.

(Original recipe from Eat by Nigel Slater, Fourth Estate, 2013.)

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