Making the most of the last of this summer’s asparagus, here’s a simple risotto flavoured with summer greens, off-set beautifully with toasted hazelnuts and parmesan.
Ingredients: 2 shallots, 1 clove of garlic, 3 asparagus spears, 1 small courgette, 120g yellow wax beans, 8g lemon thyme.
From the larder: 20g butter, 170g Arborio rice, 700-800ml stock, 50g hazelnuts, salt and pepper, (optional: salmon fillets, 30g grated parmesan).
- Peel and chop the shallots and a garlic clove. Sauté gently with a knob of butter for about 5-7 minutes until shallots are soft.
- Add the Arborio rice and cook for 2 minutes, until the rice looks slightly translucent.
- Prepare 700ml stock (use some white wine if you like). Add it to the rice ladle-by-ladle until it is all fully absorbed. Stir and allow stock to absorb between each ladle. Add more water if you run out of stock before the rice is cooked. This process can take up to 20 mins, so be patient. If using salmon, grill while the risotto cooks.
- While keeping an eye on the risotto, heat a frying pan and dry fry the hazelnuts until they start to smell and brown. Set aside.
- Using the same frying pan, heat a glug of oil and cut the asparagus spears into quarters, slice the courgette and top, tail and halve the wax beans. Sauté the veggies until soft.
- Once the stock is absorbed and the risotto al denté. Remove from the heat, stir in the veggies, hazelnuts, lemon thyme leaves and parmesan and serve immediately, with extra parmesan grated on top.
Beautiful borlotti beans are here in all their pink mottled glory! We love them in this delicious summer tagine.
Ingredients: 10g ginger, 2 cloves of garlic, 2 shallots, 1 small courgette, 3-4 chantenay carrots, 130g borlotti beans, 3-4 dried apricots, small bunch of coriander.
Larder: 1tsp cinnamon, 1tsp cumin powder, 1tsp honey, 1 tin of chopped tomatoes, 150ml water, 120g couscous, oil, salt and pepper (optional extra: yoghurt).
- Peel and dice the shallots, garlic and ginger.
- Sauté the shallots, garlic and ginger in heavy bottomed saucepan for a few minutes until shallots are soft.
- Stir in the cinnamon and cumin powder and cook for a minute.
- Add the tin of tomatoes, water, pinch of salt and honey.
- Chop the courgette and carrots into chunks and shell the borlotti beans, and then add to the saucepan.
- Chop the dried apricots into quarters or eighths and add to the saucepan.
- Season and simmer covered until the beans are soft (about 25 minutes). Stir occasionally and add more water if needed.
- While tagine is cooking, make the couscous. Place couscous in a bowl and pour over an equal volume of water. Cover with a plate or cling film and allow to stand for 5 minutes.
- Serve the tagine with couscous and torn coriander on top and a dollop of yoghurt if desired.
Ingredients: 2 shallots, 2 garlic cloves, 150g broad beans, 100g peas, 1 courgette, a few stems of mint, 2 stems of basil, 50g bunch of rocket.
From the larder: 2 knobs of butter, 170g Arborio rice, 600-700ml stock, 30g Parmesan, (Optional: grilled fish or chicken, exchange 100ml stock for white wine).
- Peel and chop the shallots and peel and dice the garlic.
- Gently sauté in a knob of butter for 2 minutes or until soft. Add the Arborio rice, cook for a minute or so while you prepare the stock.
- Add the stock ladle-by-ladle to the rice. Stir and cook for a few minutes between each ladle allowing stock to absorb between each one.
Pull the spoon through the risotto and count to 10. If it holds for 10 seconds, it’s time for more stock.
- While risotto is cooking, shell the peas and broad beans, and thinly slice the courgette. If using, grill meat/fish.
- Bring a small pot of water to the boil and boil the broad beans for a 1-2 minutes. Drain and run them under cold water and then pierce the skin of the beans with your finger nail and pop the beans out their skin casing. You can skip this step and put them straight into the risotto if you want to, but the skin casing can be a little bitter.
- When you’ve used just over ¾ of the stock, stir in the broad beans, courgette and peas.
- When risotto is creamy and al denté (soft but still with a little bite), take off the heat, add a knob of butter and cover until butter has melted.
- Mix in grated Parmesan and chopped mint and basil leaves. Serve immediately with rocket on the side.
The sweet and savoury combinations of cinnamon roast veg, fresh mint and dates is irresistible in this dish. Chop it all up and pop it in the oven: it couldn’t be simpler!
Ingredients: 2 shallots, 2 cloves of garlic, 1 romero or bell pepper, 1/2 a sweet potato, 1 courgette, 2 dates, small bunch or sprig of mint.
From the larder: 140g couscous, 1 tbsp honey, cinnamon, 2 dollops of plain yoghurt (optional: 2 salmon fillets).
- Preheat oven to 200 degrees C.
- Roughly chop the shallots, garlic & pepper and chop the sweet potato & courgette into small chunks.
- Place the veg in a roasting tin, drizzle with olive oil and honey, and mix in a pinch of cinnamon.
- Season with salt and pepper and roast for 20 minutes or until soft.
- If using salmon, place the salmon on top of the veg for the last 7-10 minutes of roasting.
- When veg is almost cooked, prepare the couscous. Place in a bowl and pour over double the volume of freshly boiled water. Cover and leave to stand for 5 minutes. For added flavour stir in half or quarter of a stock cube.
- Chop the dates and mint and add to the couscous when it’s ready.
- When veg (and salmon if using) is ready, remove from the oven, and serve on top of the couscous along with a dollop of yoghurt.
Tamarind is found in the seed pods of the tamarind tree. We eat the fleshy pulp surrounding the seeds that tastes somewhat like a date with a delicate citrus note. Although tamarind is often used in Southeast Asian cooking, the Tamarind trees is in fact originally native to Africa. It is used in all sorts of sauces, curries, soups and marinades. In this dish, we use it to make a pad thai sauce accompanying stir-fried veggies, peanuts and spring onions.
Ingredients: 2 tamarind pods, 2shallots, 1 clove of garlic, 1 small head of pak choy, 70g chantenay carrots, 1 small courgette, small bunch of coriander, 1 spring onion.
From the larder: 175g rice noodles, 3tbsp soy sauce, 1tbsp brown sugar, oil, juice of half a lime (optional: 1 egg, handful of peanuts).
- Before you do anything, crack the tamarind pod open and pull out the fleshy inside. Place in a small bowl with 1/8 C warm water and let sit for 10 minutes while you prepare the veg.
- Bring a saucepan of water to the boil for the rice noodles and prepare all your veg.
- Mince garlic, chop shallots and slice the stalk and leaves of the pak choi. Slice the carrots and courgette into batons, slice the spring onion and chop the coriander.
- After 10 minutes, with your fingers, rub the flesh of the tamarind off the seeds pour into a bowl straining the seeds. Push as much flesh through a sieve so that you have tamarind-muddied water. Add soy sauce and sugar to the water and stir to combine. Taste and adjust portions so that it is a strong sweet and salty sauce.
- Add noodles to the boiling water and cook for 4-6 minutes. Drain and then run cold water through them.
- Meanwhile, heat a wok on a med-high heat and add a glug of oil. Add the carrots and courgette, followed by shallots, garlic and pak choi. Stir-fry for 3-5 minutes and then push veg aside, crack an egg into the wok and scramble. Mix in to the stir-fry and then stir in the sauce and the noodles.
- Serve with peanuts, spring onion and chopped coriander on top.
This is a celebration of Spring in a bowl. When Spring springs, the birds sing and blossom arrives, we find it hard to think about anything other than delightful greens and salads galore. This scrumptious salad is packed with spring greens, pretty pink radishes and more…
Ingredients: 60g radishes, 200g new potatoes, 100g green beans, 1 courgette, 1 shallot, 1 clove of garlic clove, 10g basil and 10g tarragon.
From the larder: 150g rice (red, wild or brown), 5tbsp olive oil, 3tbsp white wine vinegar and 1tbsp Dijon mustard (optional: poached eggs, or grilled meat).
- Start cooking the rice. Cover with water in a saucepan. Cover, bring to the boil and then simmer for 15 or so minutes until soft.
- Top, tail and halve the green beans and roughly chop the potatoes.
- Boil the potatoes in a saucepan of water for 10 minutes until soft when poked with a knife.
- Cook the green beans by adding them to the potatoes for the last 5 minutes of their cooking.
- Meanwhile, finely chop the shallot and garlic clove, and chop the tarragon leaves. Combine in a small bowl along with the mustard and white wine vinegar and set aside.
- Grate or finely slice the courgette, thinly slice the radishes and chop the basil and place in a salad bowl. If you have a mandolin, use it to slice the courgette and radishes.
- When the rice, potatoes and green beans are cooked, add to the salad bowl and then mix in the salad dressing. Serve the salad with optional poached egg or a grilled meat addition of your choice.