Glamorgan Sausages

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glamorgan 21/06/2017

These vegetarian leek and cheese sausages are delicious and full of flavour. Perfect comfort food.

Ingredients:

  • 25g/1oz butter
  • 115g/4oz leeks, trimmed, finely sliced (prepared weight)
  • 175g/6oz fresh white breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme
  • 150g/5oz Caerphilly cheese or Welsh Cheddar, finely grated
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 1 tsp English mustard
  • ½ tsp flaked sea salt
  • 5 tbsp sunflower oil
  • freshly ground black pepper

Method:

  1. For the sausages, melt the butter in a large non-stick frying pan and fry the leek gently for 8-10 minutes, or until very soft but not coloured.
  2. Put 100g/3½oz of the breadcrumbs, the parsley, thyme and cheese in a large mixing bowl and mix until well combined. Beat the egg yolks with the mustard, salt and plenty of freshly ground black pepper in a separate bowl.
  3. Remove the frying pan from the heat and tip the leeks into the bowl with the breadcrumbs. Add the egg yolks and mix together well with a large wooden spoon until well combined. Divide the leek mixture into eight portions and roll into sausage shapes. Place the sausages onto a tray lined with cling film.
  4. Whisk the egg whites lightly in a bowl with a large metal whisk until just frothy. Sprinkle 40g/1½oz breadcrumbs over a large plate. Dip the sausages one at a time into the beaten egg and roll in the breadcrumbs until evenly coated, then place on the baking tray. Chill the sausages in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  5. Heat the oil into a large non-stick frying pan and fry the sausages over a medium heat for 10-12 minutes, turning regularly until golden-brown and crisp. Serve the sausages with what you fancy. I chose baked beans!

glamorgann

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Cheesy Lentil Bake

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lentil 13/06/2017

You could try using different veggies and cheeses for this. I just used what I had in at the time but this could be great with leeks, spring onions, parsnips, green beans, peppers… anything. Just remember that since you want this cheesy lentil slice to set nice and firm, you’ll need to thoroughly cook any particularly wet vegetables beforehand, and cut them nice and small.

This cheesy lentil slice is super high in protein and fibre and it’s still absolutely delish. The slice can be… well, sliced. This means that as well as making a great dinner alongside some homemade chips, garlic bread, salad or whatever else tickles your fancy, it can also be packed into lunch boxes to be served cold. Gotta love a versatile recipe!

Ingredients:

  • 190g red lentils
  • 1 litre chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • ½ onion, finely chopped
  • 1 small carrot, diced fairly small
  • 60g frozen peas
  • 75g rolled oats
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp each oregano and thyme
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 70 g cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 large tomato, sliced

Instructions:

  1. Add the red lentils, chicken stock and tomato puree to a saucepan, and bring to a simmer. Cook over a medium heat until the red lentils are tender and any excess liquid has cooked off – around 15 minutes. You’ll need to stir regularly, especially in the last few minutes, to ensure the lentils don’t stick to the pan.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a frying pan, and add the chopped onion and carrot. Cook for a few minutes over a medium heat, until softened then add the peas for a couple more minutes. Set aside to cool.
  3. When the lentils are cooked, transfer them to a large mixing bowl, and add the cooked vegetables, rolled oats, smoked paprika, herbs and a generous pinch of black pepper. Allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes then add about half of the grated cheese (hold some back for topping). Mix thoroughly.
  4. Spread the lentil mixture out into a greased baking tin (mine was 9 inches squared), and smooth out the top. Add the remaining grated cheese and a few slices of tomato. Bake at 180°C for around 45 minutes, or until the lentil slice is firm and the cheese on top is golden (cover with foil if you feel the cheese is browning too quickly). Either serve immediately, or allow to cool and cut into slices.

 

Mushroom Stroganoff

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16832212_10154933293991000_6247086306092457628_n 21/02/2017

Sometimes, I don’t have time and my stomach doesn’t have the patience for me to stand and cook a long, complicated meal. As much as I love getting creative in the kitchen, it doesn’t have to take forever to whip up a tasty offering and this mushroom stroganoff is a case in point. It takes 10 minutes to make. The sauce is made while the pasta is boiling then the pasta is tossed through the sauce to soak up all the earthy, creamy flavours. The paprika lends the smallest hint of spice and the parsley provides a freshness against the luxurious sour cream

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 25g butter
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 200g chestnut mushroom, sliced
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • 150ml beef stock
  • 142ml carton soured cream
  • a handful of chopped parsley
  • tagliatelle, to serve

Method:

  1. Fry the onion in the butter in a large frying pan until soft. Stir in the garlic and mushrooms and fry over high heat until browned. Add the paprika, fry for 30 seconds. Pour in the beef stock and bubble fiercely to reduce by two-thirds.
  2. Take off the heat and stir in the soured cream, parsley and salt and pepper. Serve with tagliatelle.

Falafels

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falafel 20/12/2016

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 400g chickpeas
  • ½ red onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • Small bunch of parsley
  • Small bunch of coriander
  • Zest of ½ a lemon
  • 2 tsp coriander seeds, toasted and ground
  • 1 tsp each of cumin seeds, fennel seeds, caraway seeds, toasted and ground
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp flour
  • Pinch of chilli powder

Method:

  1. Add all the ingredients to a food processor and blend until well combined and a paste is formed. You can pulse the mix to keep it a bit chunky if you prefer.
  2. Shape the mix into balls about the shape of a large walnut.
  3. It is traditional to fry falafel but I like mine dry fried in a pan. This is also a very healthy way of cooking them. Place the pan over a medium heat and pop the falafel balls in. cook them for about 4-5 minutes or until turning a nice deep brown colour. Flip them and cook the other side in the same way then remove. Can be eaten hot or cold.

These can be made into burgers, stuffed into pitta breads, served with salad, olives, cheeses, dunked into humous or tzatziki, topped with tomato sauce, anything.

Saag Paneer

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screenshot_2016-09-16-18-35-12-11 17/09/2016

Saag paneer is a classic Indian dish of cooked spinach studded with cubes of fried paneer cheese. Thickened with cream, yoghurt or coconut milk, it’s a hearty and filling vegetarian meal.

Serves 2 as a main -4 as a side

Ingredients:

  • 8oz fresh spinach leaves, washed
  • 1 inch piece ginger, grated
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated
  • 1 fresh red chilli, finely chopped
  • 7fl oz water
  • 1 Tbsp oil
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 tomatoes, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 2 tsp methi (fenugreek) seeds, ground
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 3 Tbsp natural yoghurt
  • 200g paneer, cut into cubes

Method:

  1. Cook the wet spinach leaves in a tightly covered pan for 5 minutes. Squeeze out the excess water and roughly chop the spinach. Add the chopped spinach, ginger, garlic and chilli with a little of the measured water into a bowl and mix. Set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a large, heavy pan, add the bay leaves and pepper and fry for 2 minutes. Stir in the onion and fry for 6-8 minutes or until the onion has browned.
  3. Add the tomatoes and simmer for about 5 minutes.
  4. Stir in the curry powder, methi seeds, salt and chilli powder. Cook for 2 minutes over a medium heat, stirring a couple of times. Add the Spinach mix and the remaining water. Simmer for 5 minutes. Add the yoghurt a tablespoon at a time and simmer for 5 minutes more.
  5. Add the paneer to a frying pan over medium heat and cook until beginning to brown then turn the cheese cubes and repeat on all or most sides. Add the browned paneer to the sauce and stir to coat. Serve with chapatti or paratha to dunk into the lovely sauce.

To skin the tomatoes, score a cross in the tops, place in a bowl and pour boiling water over them. Leave this for about 5 minutes, drain and the skins will be easy to peel away. You can leave them on but the sauce will have hard chewy strands in it and this step is definitely worthwhile for a velvet smooth sauce.

Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni

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Screenshot_2016-06-25-13-51-45-1[1] 25/06/2016

Here is a beautiful recipe for a homely, comforting dinner. It is a little hands on and requires a bit of effort and time in the kitchen but that is half of the fun and the resulting meal is satisfying and flavourful. If you are pushed for time or don’t have the patience then you can cut corners such as using ready made lasagne sheets or cannelloni tubes and buying ready made pasta sauce but you WILL be able to tell the difference.

The pasta in my recipe is so easy to make and the touch of wholemeal flour in the recipe not only adds texture and flavour but fibre too.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 200g ricotta
  • 300g fresh spinach
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated
  • Nutmeg
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 500ml passata
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • Fresh basil, a handful, roughly chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • A pinch of sugar

For the wholemeal cannelloni:

  • 50g wholemeal flour
  • 50g plain flour
  • 1 large egg
  • Pinch of salt
  • A dash of water, optional

For the béchamel sauce:

  • A knob of butter
  • 2 tsp plain flour
  • Semi skimmed milk
  • Salt and ground white pepper
  • Nutmeg, finely grated
  • Parmesan, finely grated, for topping

Method:

For the spinach and ricotta filling:

  1. Bring a saucepan with 1cm of water to the boil. Add the fresh spinach and wilt it for 30 seconds. Drain all the water and, using a pair of rubber gloves, squeeze the excess water from the spinach.
  2. Roughly chop the spinach and add it to a mixing bowl along with the ricotta, garlic, seasoning and nutmeg. Set aside in the fridge.

For the tomato sauce:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Gently sweat the onions for 8-10 minutes until soft and lightly golden. Add the garlic and stir for another minute.
  2. Add the passata, sugar and seasoning and leave to simmer gently for 20-30 minutes. Stir occasionally then add the basil before removing from the heat.
  3. Place half of the sauce in the base of a loaf tin or ovenproof dish and set the other half aside.

For the wholemeal cannelloni:

  1. Place the flours and salt into a mixing bowl. Add in the egg and combine with a fork until a dough is formed. You may need a little added water to help combine the dough.
  2. Tip the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for a few minutes. Wrap in cling-film and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
  3. When ready, roll the dough into one long sheet. You can do this with a pasta machine if you have one but a rolling pin and good old fashioned elbow grease is just as good if you don’t. Roll the dough as thinly as you can.

For the béchamel:

  1. Heat the butter in a milk pan. Add the flour and whisk to combine. Cook the flour out over a low-medium heat for a couple of minutes then, away from the heat, add a splash of milk and whisk constantly until thickening. This will happen very quickly. Keep adding small amounts of milk and whisking to incorporate. Keep adding milk until you have a saucy consistency and place back over the gentle heat.
  2. Add the nutmeg and seasoning and keep stirring on the heat until the correct thickness is achieved.

To assemble:

  1. Cut the long sheet of pasta into 8-10 rectangles and fill each with a good dollop of the spinach, ricotta filling. Roll up the rectangles to encase the filling in a cylinder and place each cylinder on top of the tomato sauce in your loaf tin.
  2. Top with the remaining tomato sauce then drizzle the béchamel sauce over the top.
  3. Top with plenty of grated parmesan and bake in an oven preheated to 180C for 30 minutes or until golden and bubbling.

Screenshot_2016-06-25-13-55-24-1[1] Screenshot_2016-06-25-13-53-21-1[1]

Aubergine Rolls & Garlic Dough Balls

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IMG_20140907_202106[1] 08/09/2014

This recipe came about when trying to find a vegetarian dinner with an Italian theme that I could cook with my best mate. It is not a traditional Italian recipe as we added loads of chunky vegetables to the sauce to suit our taste. The aubergine is sliced very thinly and par-baked first so it becomes roll-able and then acts as cannelloni would to hold a tasty spinach and cheese filling.

A word of advice: Make sure you have a a nice big baking dish that will definitely hold all the ingredients as you will need to cover it with foil during the first part of baking and you don’t want it to press on the top of your dish. Don’t do as we did which is to pile it all into a smaller dish, run out of foil and have to balance another tray over the top which fell off and spilled half our cheese topping all over the inside of the oven (woops).

CULPRIT >>>>>>P1030778[1]   

Ahem! Moving on, the dish was very tasty despite our little mishap…

Aubergine Rolls (serves 3-4)

Ingredients:

  • 2 large aubergines
  • 125g (1/2 a pack) ricotta
  • 150g grated mozzarella, divided in 50g and 100g
  • 100g grated parmesan
  • 300g fresh spinach, wilted and squeezed to remove as much liquid as possible
  • 1 egg
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • salt and pepper and sugar to taste
  • 1 carton tomato passata
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 200g chestnut mushrooms, quartered (optional)
  • 1 red and 1 green bell pepper, chopped (optional)
  • 1 tsp mixed herbs

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 200C.
  2. To make the tomato sauce, heat a teaspoon of oil in a pan and fry the chopped onion, garlic and peppers until softened. Add the mushrooms and herbs and continue to fry until softened. Add the passata, reduce the heat to low and let the sauce simmer for 5 minutes. Set aside.
  3. Remove the aubergine ends and slice them thinly. Spray a baking sheet with olive oil and place 12 aubergine slices on it. (You may need to use two baking sheet or bake the aubergine in two batches depending on the size of your oven). Bake for 10 minutes, remove from the oven and let cool.
  4. While the aubergine is cooking, prepare ricotta and spinach mixture. In a bowl, combine ricotta, mozzarella (50g), parmesan, spinach, egg and garlic. Mix well and season to taste.
  5. Spread 1/2 the chunky tomato sauce on the bottom of a large baking dish.
  6. Generously spread ricotta/spinach mixture on an aubergine slice (about one heaped tablespoon), roll it and arrange on top of the sauce in the dish, seam side down. Continue with remaining aubergine slices. IMG_20140907_201806[1]
  7. Top with remaining tomato sauce and sprinkle with remaining mozzarella (100g). Cover with foil, reduce oven to 180C and bake for 45 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 15 minutes or until cheese is golden brown. Remove from the oven and serve.

Garlic Dough Balls

IMG_20140907_202019[1]

Ingredients:

For the Pizza Dough:

  • 200g Plain Flour
  • ½ teaspoon Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Sugar
  • 1 x 7g sachet Instant Active Dry Yeast
  • 125ml Warm Water
  • 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

For the Garlic Dough Balls:

  • Pizza Dough
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, grated or minced finely
  • 1 tablespoon Butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon mixed Herbs (optional)
  • A pinch of salt

Instructions:

For the Dough

  1. In warm water, mix sugar and instant yeast and let it rest for 5 minutes. The yeast will bubble up. This process is called ‘activating’ the yeast.
  2. Mix plain & salt
  3. Add oil & the water mixture to the flour
  4. Knead for 10 minutes by hand (or 6-7 minutes with electric mixer) to form a smooth and elastic dough
  5. Place the ball of dough in a well oiled bowl, cover with cling film or a damp kitchen towel and let it rise for 90 minutes or until it doubles in volume.
  6. Then punch down the dough and use as required

For the Garlic Dough Balls

  1. Cut the pizza dough into equal pieces (16-24 depending on how big you like your dough balls).
  2. Roll each piece between your palms to form small balls of dough. Place the balls on a baking pan at least ¼ inch apart from each other.
  3. Cover the baking pan & let it rest for 20-25 minutes. The balls will have puffed up
  4. Meanwhile, mix the garlic with melted butter, salt and herbs. Preheat your oven to 200C.
  5. Brush all the balls with the garlic butter (if any garlic pieces are left behind, place them on any of the balls). If you like, sprinkle your favourite herb on top of the balls.
  6. Bake them for 20 minutes or until the balls are golden brown and fully cooked through.

These are great dunked in the chunky, cheesy tomato sauce, just don’t plan on going to near anybody after eating them (unless they’re a vampire that you need to get rid of).