Hetty McKinnon’s mushroom cashew cream soup recipe

I’m sure most people have consumed a bowl of “cream of mushroom soup” at some point. In many cases, you may have experienced it straight out of a can – the insipidly pale, gelatinous blob never failing to underwhelm both visually and flavour-wise.

But canned soup aside, I believe that mushrooms have unlimited potential in soups. They have a powerful umami character and a complex flavour profile, which adds richness and dimension to soups.

In this recipe, it was my aim to create a full-bodied soup, with the deepest mushroom flavour possible. A few tricks helped me amplify the mushroomy taste: I cooked the mushrooms first to draw out their flavour before adding the stock; I used a large proportion of mushrooms to liquid; and I added a few cashews into the soup to provide body and creaminess.

The cashew cream is a versatile recipe to add to your repertoire – it adds a lovely sweetness to soup and can also be used as a pasta sauce or dressing for roasted vegetables. The topping is optional, but I love to finish my soups with a special something – in this case, sautéed lemony mushrooms and cashews – to add texture and crunch.

A note about mushrooms: I’ve used Swiss browns, but you could also use shiitake, button or a mix.

Mushroom cashew cream soup

serves 4
gluten free/vegan

Cashew cream
1 cup (150g) cashews soaked in 1 cup boiling water
3/4 cup (185ml) vegetable stock
1 small clove garlic, chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
sea salt

Soup
extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
800g Swiss brown mushrooms, sliced
½ cup (75g) cashews
6 cups vegetable stock
2 scallions, finely sliced
sea salt and black pepper

Topping
extra-virgin olive oil
300g mushrooms, sliced
1 small clove garlic, finely chopped
2 tbsp cashews
½ tsp Aleppo pepper or red chilli flakes
juice of ½ lemon
sea salt

For the cashew cream, soak the cashews for at least 30 minutes. When ready, drain the cashews and add them with the vegetable stock, garlic and oil, then blend until smooth and creamy (if it is too thick, you can add a few splashes of water). Season well with sea salt.

Place a pot or large pan on high heat. When hot, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and the onion. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 2 minutes, until the onions are soft and translucent. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds until it is fragrant, and then toss in the mushrooms, along with 1 tablespoon of oil. Season with sea salt and black pepper.

Cook for 3-4 minutes until the mushrooms release their liquid, and then add the cashews along with the vegetable stock. Cover and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes. Blend until smooth.

Meanwhile, prepare the soup topping by adding a drizzle of oil to a medium frypan. Add the mushrooms and garlic and cook for 2-3 minutes, until the mushrooms are caramelised. Add the cashews, Aleppo, and toss for a minute or so until the nuts are browned. Squeeze over the lemon juice and season with sea salt.

To serve, ladle the mushroom soup into bowls, drizzle over some of the cashew cream, add a spoonful of the mushroom topping and finish with a scatter of scallions.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2019/may/25/hetty-mckinnons-mushroom-cashew-cream-soup-recipe

Photograph: Hetty McKinnon/The Guardian

Yotam Ottolenghi’s black lime tofu.

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Dried limes are intensely sour and effective at giving dishes a uniquely earthy acidity. They are especially popular in Iran, Iraq, Oman and the Persian Gulf, and they come whole or ground, black or white (they also go by different names such as Omani limes, Iranian limes or noomi basra). Use the black variety here, if you can. I like to serve this dish with steamed white rice or warm flatbreads to scoop everything up.

Prep 10 min
Cook 20 min
Serves 4

1 tbsp cider vinegar
2 tsp caster sugar
1 small red onion, peeled and cut into thin rounds (use a mandoline, if you have one)
Salt and black pepper
600ml sunflower oil, for frying
2 blocks extra-firm tofu (560g), patted dry and cut into 2cm cubes
2 tbsp cornflour
2 onions, peeled and roughly chopped
6 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped
60ml olive oil
2 tsp cumin seeds, roughly crushed in a mortar
10g dried black limes (about 2-3), blitzed in a spice grinder to get 2 tbsp
2 tbsp tomato paste
20g parsley leaves, roughly chopped
250g baby spinach

In a small bowl, mix the vinegar, a teaspoon of sugar, the red onion and an eighth of a teaspoon of salt, then leave to pickle while you get on with making the rest of the dish.

Heat the sunflower oil in a medium saute pan on a medium-high flame. In a bowl, toss the tofu in the cornflour until well coated. Fry the tofu in two batches, until crisp and lightly browned – about six minutes a batch – then transfer to a plate lined with kitchen paper, to drain.

While the tofu is frying, make the sauce. Pulse the onion and garlic in a food processor until very finely minced (but not pureed). Put the olive oil in a large saute pan on a medium-high heat, then fry the onion mixture, stirring occasionally, until softened and lightly browned – about seven minutes. Add the cumin, lime powder and tomato paste, cook for a minute, then add 400ml water, the last teaspoon of sugar, a teaspoon and a quarter of salt and a good grind of pepper. Bring to a simmer, then cook, stirring occasionally, for six minutes, until thick and rich. Add the tofu, parsley and another grind of pepper, stir to coat, then add the spinach in increments, stirring, until it has just wilted – about three minutes.

Transfer to a shallow platter, top with the pickled onion and serve.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2019/apr/27/yotam-ottolenghi-30-minute-recipes-beans-leeks-eggs-fried-tofu-salmon-potato-bake

Meera Sodha’s vegan recipe for aubergine fesenjan

This recipe is from Meera Sodha’s book Fresh India. You’ll need a food processor to grind the walnuts.

Prep 10 min
Cook 30-35 min
Serves 4 as a main

120g walnuts
4 medium aubergines (1.2 kg)
Rapeseed oil
Salt and ground black pepper
2 large red onions, peeled and thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
tbsp brown rice syrup
¾ tsp chilli powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp pomegranate molasses
250ml hot vegetable stock
Seeds from 1 pomegranate
1 handful fresh coriander, roughly chopped

Heat the oven to 200C (180C fan)/390F/gas 6 and line a large baking tray with lightly oiled foil. In a food processor, blitz the walnuts to a fine crumb.

Cut the aubergines into 5cm x 2cm batons, toss in a bowl with a little oil to coat, season lightly, then transfer to the prepared tray and roast for 25 minutes, until meltingly soft.

While the aubergines are roasting, make the fesenjan sauce. Put three tablespoons of oil into a large frying pan over a medium heat and, once hot, add the onions and fry for 12 minutes, stirring regularly to ensure they don’t catch.

Add the garlic, fry for three minutes, then stir in the brown rice syrup, chilli powder, cinnamon, half a teaspoon of salt, a teaspoon of ground black pepper, the blitzed walnuts and the pomegranate molasses. Pour in the stock and cook for about eight minutes, until the sauce comes together.

When the aubergines are tender, pour the sauce into a serving dish. Arrange the aubergines on top, scatter over the pomegranate seeds and coriander, and serve with steamed basmati rice.

Photograph: Louise Hagger/The Guardian. Food styling: Katy Gilhooly. Prop styling: Jennifer Kay.

Meera Sodha’s recipe for vegan salted miso brownies

If I were in charge of brownies and their taxonomy, there would be a proper list of categories. The only thing that unifies them really is the chocolate, beyond which they could be cakey, crumbly, chewy, chocolatey or, er, cocoa-ey. This one is my perfect brownie: dense and fudgy, thanks to the chia seeds; and rich, but not sickeningly so, with a salted caramel-like flavour that comes from using white miso and salt together. It makes this brownie incredibly special. And there is no category for that.

Make sure you use flavourless coconut oil, unless you actually want to add a coconut flavour, and check that the chocolate is suitable for vegans.

Prep 10 min
Cook 45 min
Makes 16

4 ½ tbsp milled chia seeds
150g flavourless coconut oil
250g dark chocolate (85%), broken into small pieces
420g light brown muscovado sugar
120g plain flour
3 ½ tbsp white miso (shiro miso)
1 tsp flaky sea salt

Heat the oven to 190c (180C fan)/390F/gas 6, and line a 20cm x 22cm square tin with greaseproof paper. In a small bowl, mix the milled chia seeds with 270ml water and set aside.

Put the coconut oil and broken chocolate into a medium-sized saucepan, and set over a low heat. Stir occasionally until melted, then mix in the sugar, flour and miso, and crumble in the salt flakes. Finally, stir in the soaked and bloomed chia seeds, then pour into the lined tin and gently shake to distribute evenly.

Bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 45 minutes, then remove. The brownies might still be a bit wobbly in the middle, but they will soon settle down as they cool and be deliciously fudgy. Leave to cool completely, then cut into 16 squares.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2019/jan/26/meera-sodha-recipe-vegan-salted-miso-brownies

Photograph: Louise Hagger/The Guardian. Food styling: Katy Gilhooly. Prop styling: Jennifer Kay

Yumi Stynes’ roasted broccoli with miracle puree

This is freaking yummy and a proper, grown-up feed for people who like their veggies exuberant and full of flavour. The puree is a vegan miracle, and I was tempted to keep it secret because, well, it’s nice to have secrets, especially nutty ones. The marriage of the puree and the broccoli is just joy and you’ll find when you serve this that people start tentatively, then keep coming back for more.

serves 6 as a side

    • 550g broccoli, cut into medium florets
    • zest of 1 lemon
    • 2 tbsp olive oil
    • salt

Miracle puree

    • 60g walnuts
    • 400g tinned cannellini (lima) beans, drained and rinsed
    • 1 garlic clove, finely grated
    • juice of half a lemon
    • small pinch of salt
    • 11/2 tbsp best-quality extra-virgin olive oil
    • 60ml water, plus extra if necessary

Preheat the oven to 175C.

Add the broccoli florets and lemon zest to a large bowl, drizzle over the oil and toss together to coat. Spread the florets out on two baking trays and sprinkle lightly with salt, then pop them in the oven and roast for 20–25 minutes until looking lovely and golden with a tiny char on each little tree.

While the broccoli is cooking, make a start on the miracle puree. Refresh the walnuts by popping them on a separate tray and toasting them in the oven for 4 minutes. (A timer is crucial here or you’ll forget them.)

Tip the cannellini beans into the food processor together with the walnuts and all the other puree ingredients. Whizz together to the consistency of Greek-style yoghurt – if it’s too thick, add an extra 2–3 tablespoons warm water and blend again.

When ready to serve, spread the puree out over a brightly coloured platter and top with the roasted broccoli. Enjoy.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2018/dec/22/christmas-menu

Photograph: Chris Chen/Hardie Grant Books

This is an edited extract from Zero F*cks Cooking: Endless Summer by Yumi Stynes

Hetty McKinnon’s smoky beans with charred tomato puttanesca

Beans walk a fine line between being perfectly crisp-tender and overcooked, so watch your beans like a hawk and taste constantly as you cook. The moment they are just tender enough, with a slight sweetness, take them off the heat (if you are steaming them, a bowl filled with ice water is useful to stop the cooking).

This recipe is a wonderful weeknight dish eaten on its own, but it can also be served with pasta, grains or couscous to add extra heartiness. Top with (vegan) cheese or pine nuts. These beans also may be made ahead of time and eaten at room temperature.

    • 500g green beans (or a mix of varieties), trimmed
    • Extra virgin olive oil
    • 400g mixed tomatoes
    • ½ cup (100g) black olives, pitted and roughly chopped
    • 1 tbsp capers, roughly chopped
    • ½ – 1 tsp red pepper flakes (to taste)
    • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar, plus more to serve
    • 1 can chickpeas, drained
    • Handful parsley or basil leaves, roughly chopped
    • Sea salt and black pepper

Heat the barbecue, grill pan or wok on high heat.

Slice larger beans diagonally, and leave the smaller ones whole. Place the beans in a large bowl, drizzle over some olive oil and season with sea salt. Transfer the beans to the hot barbecue (or pan/wok) and cook for 4-5 minutes, turning once, until the beans have a nice char and are crisp-tender. Remove immediately and lay out on a large plate or board to cool down (don’t pile them on top of each other as the heat makes them discolour).

Leave the barbecue or grill pan on high heat. Prepare your tomatoes by cutting larger ones (like plum or beefsteak) in half or into quarters; leave smaller tomatoes, like cherry or grape, whole. Place your tomatoes in a bowl and drizzle over some olive oil and season with sea salt. Toss to combine and add to the hot plate of your barbecue (or into your hot pan/wok). Blister for 5-7 minutes, until soft, charred and just about to burst. Carefully remove immediately and place in a bowl.

To make the puttanesca sauce, add the olives, capers, red pepper flakes and balsamic vinegar to the bowl with the charred tomatoes, and stir. Drizzle with a 2-3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Season with pinch of sea salt and black pepper.

To serve, combine the beans with the chickpeas. Spoon over the puttanesca sauce and scatter with parsley.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2018/dec/15/hetty-mckinnons-smoky-beans-with-charred-tomato-puttanesca-recipe

Photograph: Hetty McKinnon

Yotam Ottolenghi’s gingery cucumber salad.

A simple, crunchy and sharp pickled salad to balance the richness of all the protein and carbs. Chinkiang vinegar is a rice-based black vinegar that you’ll find in any good Asian supermarket. It has a very particular taste that’s both acidic and umami all at once. If you can’t find it, use rice-wine vinegar with a touch of soy mixed in instead, though that would mean the dish is no longer gluten-free.

Prep 10 min
Marinate 2 hr 20 min
Cook 5 min
Serves 6

2 large cucumbers, cut in half lengthways, watery centres scraped out and discarded
Flaked sea salt
2 small garlic cloves
, peeled and crushed
2 tbsp lime juice
2 tsp Chinkiang black rice vinegar
, or normal rice-wine vinegar with a touch of soy sauce
3cm piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
3 spring onions, finely chopped
1 tbsp coriander leaves

Cut the cucumber into roughly 1.5cm chunks. Add to a bowl with two teaspoons of flaked salt, stir and set aside for 20 minutes. Strain, discarding any liquid, then return the cucumber to the bowl with the garlic, lime, vinegar and two-thirds each of the ginger and spring onions. Leave to marinate for two hours. To serve, toss through the coriander and the remaining ginger and spring onions, and sprinkle over a quarter-teaspoon more salt.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2018/dec/08/yotam-ottolenghis-alternative-christmas-recipes

Photograph: Louise Hagger for the Guardian

Yotam Ottolenghi’s potato gratin with coconut, chilli and lime.

Potato gratin with coconut, chilli and lime

If you’re making the whole of today’s Christmas spread in one oven, bake the gratin ahead of time and reheat in a very hot oven just before serving. Top with the aromatics and zest just as you serve, and not before.

Prep 25 min
Cook 110 min
Serves 6

5 banana shallots, peeled and cut into 5mm-thick slices
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
2 tbsp olive oil
Flaked sea salt and black pepper

1.4kg slightly waxy potatoes (I used yukon gold), skin on, cut into 5mm-thick slices (use a mandoline, ideally)
100g coconut cream, gently melted until liquid
3 limes – zest finely grated, to get 1½ tsp, then juiced, to get 60ml
200ml vegetable stock

For the aromatics
150ml olive oil
2 red chillies, finely sliced into rings
3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely sliced (on a mandoline, ideally)
2cm piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely cut into julienne strips
5 spring onions, green ends finely sliced at an angle

Heat the oven to 200C (180C fan)/390F/gas 6. Put the shallots, garlic, oil and a quarter-teaspoon of salt in a 28cm ovenproof saute pan on a medium heat. Fry for eight to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft and deeply golden, then tip into a large bowl. Keep the pan to be used again (no need to clean it).

Put the potatoes, coconut cream, lime juice, two teaspoons of salt and plenty of pepper in with the shallots and mix very gently, taking care not to break up the potato slices. Lay a quarter of this mixture in the saute pan – use any smaller or broken slices of potato at this stage, and save the larger, whole slices for the top – and spread out in an even layer. Lay the remaining potato mixture in a spiral on top of this base layer, with each slice at an angle and overlapping the next. Pour on the stock, cover tightly with foil and bake for 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the aromatics. Heat the oil in a medium pan on a medium flame, then gently fry the chilli, garlic and ginger for five minutes, stirring once in a while, until the garlic is just starting to turn golden. Add the spring onions, fry for two minutes more, until the garlic is a light golden brown and the chilli aromatic, then transfer to a plate with a slotted spoon, to stop them cooking further; reserve the aromatic oil.

Remove the gratin from the oven and discard the foil. Drizzle 60ml aromatic oil evenly over the top, then return to the oven uncovered and bake for 50 minutes more. Turn up the heat to 220C (200C fan)/425F/gas 7 for the last five minutes, until the top is golden brown and crisp.

Set aside to cool for 10 minutes, top with the fried aromatics, lime zest and a generous pinch of flaked salt, and take to the table.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2018/dec/08/yotam-ottolenghis-alternative-christmas-recipes

Photograph: Louise Hagger for the Guardian

Matt Preston’s freekeh salad recipe

Freekeh is notorious for taking longer to cook than it says on the packet, so if time is of the essence choose cracked freekeh, which cooks more quickly and actually absorbs more flavours.

Personally, I prefer the wholegrain, but it takes more than twice as long to cook and requires a lot more water or stock. But then, it gives you time to properly hang the yoghurt to drain and become labne, rather than using the cheat’s method in the tips below. Always a bright side.

Freekeh salad

serves 4

200g natural pot-set yoghurt
2 eggplants, chopped into 2cm pieces
60ml (1⁄4 cup) extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp ground cumin
200g cracked freekeh
1 fresh or dried bay leaf
1⁄2 cinnamon stick
1 tsp sea salt
4 spring onions, white and dark green parts finely chopped
seeds of 1 pomegranate
1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, half the leaves finely chopped, the rest left whole
1⁄2 bunch mint, larger leaves finely chopped, smaller leaves left whole
2 tbsp raw pistachio kernels, chopped
freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp tahini
juice of 1⁄2 lemon, plus extra wedges

To serve
40g (1⁄4 cup) sunflower seeds
1 tsp sumac (or use lemon zest if you can’t find this ground lemony berry)

Dressing

4cm knob of ginger, peeled and very finely chopped
1 tbsp pomegranate molasses
juice of 1 lemon
juice and finely grated zest of 1⁄2 orange
1-1⁄2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Start making the labne the day before you want to eat the salad. Line a fine sieve with a double layer of muslin or a Chux and place over a bowl. Spoon the yoghurt into the muslin or Chux and tie the corners to enclose. Place in the fridge to drain overnight.

Preheat the oven to 210C/190C fan-forced. Line a large baking tray with baking paper.

Spread the eggplant over the prepared tray, drizzle with the oil and sprinkle with the cumin. Toss to combine. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden.

Meanwhile, place the freekeh in a sieve and rinse well under cold running water. Transfer to a medium saucepan and add the bay leaf, cinnamon stick, salt and 580ml (2-1⁄3 cups) water.

Bring to the boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium and simmer, covered, for 12–15 minutes or until all the water has been absorbed and the freekeh is tender. Spread out over a large baking tray and let it cool slightly. Amazingly, this will give you just enough time to make the dressing!

To make the dressing, whisk the ingredients in a small bowl, seasoning with the salt and pepper.

Place the warm freekeh in a large bowl, pour over the dressing and toss to combine. Set aside to cool completely.

Add the eggplant, spring onion, pomegranate seeds, chopped parsley and mint and pistachios to the cooled freekeh and toss lightly to combine. Season.

Whisk the tahini, lemon juice and 1 tablespoon warm water in a bowl. Stir in the labne.

Place the freekeh salad on a serving platter and sprinkle over the sunflower seeds. Top with dollops of the labne mixture, then sprinkle sumac over the labne. Garnish with the remaining mint and parsley leaves and serve with lemon wedges.

Tips:

To make speedy cheat’s labne, you simply need to squeeze out the whey from the yoghurt. The easiest way to do this quickly is to place the yoghurt in a clean piece of doubled-up muslin or a Chux, twist up the edges and squeeze against paper towel to wring out the whey. When it comes to mixing in the tahini, be sparing when adding the water as this version leaves a wetter labne.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2018/nov/18/matt-prestons-freekeh-salad-recipe

Yotam Ottolenghi’s Tofu and cauliflower ‘korma’

Serve this splendid vegan curry with rice or naan depending on personal preference, and a dollop of dairy-free yoghurt.

Prep 20 min
Cook 75 min
Serves 4

½ red onion, thinly sliced
2 tbsp lemon juice
Salt and black pepper
40g cashew nuts
20g blanched almonds
120ml olive oil
1 onion, peeled and roughly chopped
4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
2cm piece ginger, peeled and grated
1 green chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
1 cinnamon stick
6 cardamom pods, shells discarded, seeds roughly crushed in a mortar
2 tsp cumin seeds, roughly crushed in a mortar
2 tsp coriander seeds, roughly crushed in a mortar
¾ tsp ground turmeric
2 tomatoes, grated and skins discarded (180g net weight)
1 large cauliflower, cut into large florets (750g net weight)
15g coriander leaves, roughly chopped
250g extra-firm tofu, crumbled into medium chunks

Heat the oven to 240C (220C fan)/425F/gas 9. In a small bowl, mix the red onion, a tablespoon of lemon juice and an eighth of a teaspoon of salt.

Put the cashews and almonds in a small saucepan on a medium-high heat, cover with water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to medium, simmer for 20 minutes, then drain.

Meanwhile, heat one and a half tablespoons of oil in a large saute pan on a medium-high flame, then fry the onion, stirring often, for 10 minutes, until soft and well browned. Transfer to a blender, add the nuts and 200ml water, and blend for two minutes, until very smooth.

Heat another tablespoon and a half of oil in the same pan on a medium-high heat, then fry the garlic, ginger and chilli for a minute. Add the cinnamon, cardamom, a teaspoon each of cumin and coriander seeds, and half a teaspoon of turmeric, and cook, stirring, for a minute. Add the tomatoes, cook for four minutes, until thickened, then add the onion and nut mixture, 500ml water, a teaspoon and a half of salt and a good grind of black pepper. Bring to a simmer, lower the heat to medium and leave to cook for 20 minutes, until reduced by a third.

In a bowl, mix the cauliflower with the remaining quarter-teaspoon of turmeric, three tablespoons of oil, three-quarters of a teaspoon of salt and a good grind of pepper. Spread out on an oven tray lined with baking paper, and roast for 18 minutes, until cooked through and coloured. Stir into the sauce, add two-thirds of the coriander and the remaining tablespoon of lemon juice, and leave to simmer for five minutes.

Meanwhile, heat the remaining two tablespoons of oil in a medium saute pan on a high flame. Add the tofu, half a teaspoon of salt and a good grind of black pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden and crisp – about eight minutes. Lower the heat to medium, add the remaining teaspoon each of cumin and coriander seeds, and cook for about 30 seconds, until fragrant. Stir half of this mixture into the cauliflower, and reserve the rest.

Transfer the korma to a shallow serving bowl, top with the pickled red onion, followed by the remaining tofu and coriander, and serve.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2018/nov/10/yotam-ottolenghis-curry-recipes

Photograph: Louise Hagger/The Guardian. Food styling: Emily Kydd. Prop styling: Jennifer Kay.

Yotam Ottolenghi’s Eritrean and Ethiopian recipes

An East African feast, including berbere lentils and vegetables, cucumber, coconut and lime salsa – and teff flatbreads to scoop it all up with. All the recipes can be found here:

https://www.theguardian.com/food/2018/oct/06/yotam-ottolenghi-eritrean-ethiopian-recipes-berbere-vegetables-teff-flatbread

Hetty McKinnon’s roasted baby carrots with carrot top chimichurri recipe

Striving for simplicity in weeknight cooking doesn’t have to mean simple flavours. For me, every meal must count and every dish must deliver on taste and heart. This recipe shows how one humble ingredient, carrots, can spearhead an easy-to-prepare, flavour-bursting dish.

Using carrots from top to tail reduces waste and also challenges our taste buds. Carrot tops are herbaceous and earthy, with just a hint of carrot flavour, and add a surprising herbal accent to salads and sauces like pesto and hummus. For dinner prep, a bunch of carrots can go a long way.

The lush green flavour of carrot tops makes them the perfect addition to chimichurri. On a recent trip to Argentina, upon busy tables replete with carne asada (grilled beef), Malbec wine and oversized Coke bottles (an Argentinian tradition, I’m told), I salivated over the jars of chimichurri, herbier and heavier than usual. Dramatically tinged with paprika, and embellished with chunky chopped herbs and tiny specks of tomato, this Argentinian version of the sauce brought an exciting brightness to my plate of vegetables. In my twist-on-chimichurri recipe below, carrot tops are a lively replacement for the more traditional parsley.

This dish of roasted baby carrots with carrot top chimichurri, served on a bed of smashed white beans, comes together in about 30 minutes, and effortlessly shows off the flavour possibilities of simple ingredients. The recipe comfortably serves two, but if you are cooking for more, just up your carrot and bean count. No need to increase the amount of ingredients for chimichurri, as this recipe makes about one cup, more than enough for extra mouths. Keep extra chimichurri in an airtight jar in the fridge for up to 14 days. The chimichurri can also be made ahead to allow the flavours to meld.

Roasted baby carrots with carrot top chimichurri and smashed white beans

Serves 2, or more if eaten as a snack

1 bunch baby (Dutch) carrots, trimmed and tops reserved
extra virgin olive oil
1 small clove garlic
1 can cannellini beans, drained (drained weight 280g)
1 tsp lemon juice or red wine vinegar
handful of slivered almonds
sea salt and black pepper

Carrot top chimichurri (makes about 1 cup)

1 cup finely chopped carrot greens
1 tbsp finely chopped oregano (or 1 tsp dried oregano)
1 small tomato, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp paprika
¼ tsp smoked paprika
½ tsp chilli flakes
¾ cup good extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
sea salt and black pepper

Preheat your oven to 200C.

Scrub the carrots well and pat dry. Lay them out on a baking tray and drizzle with olive oil. Season with sea salt and black pepper, and roast for 20-25 minutes, until tender and golden (this time may vary depending on the size of your carrots).

To make your chimichurri, place the chopped carrot tops in a small bowl. Add the oregano, tomato, garlic, cumin, both paprikas, chilli flakes, olive oil and vinegar. Stir to combine. Season well with 1-2 teaspoons of sea salt and a good turn of black pepper. Taste and adjust seasoning to your liking.

For the smashed beans, place a small clove of garlic in a mortar, sprinkle with some sea salt and pound it into a paste. Add the beans and pound until half of them are broken up but the consistency is still chunky. Stir through 2 tablespoons of olive oil (or more), and season with sea salt and black pepper.

To serve, place the smashed beans on to a plate and top with the roasted carrots. Spoon over some of the chimichurri and scatter with slivered almonds.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2018/sep/22/hetty-mckinnons-roasted-baby-carrots-with-carrot-top-chimichurri-recipe

Meera Sodha’s Gorditas with drunken beans, pickles and avocado cream

Traditional Mexican fried bread topped with beery beans and avocado cream

The world over, people make delicious things you can eat with your hands, and one of my favourites is the Mexican gordita – ‘chubby’ in Spanish . It is traditionally made with masa dough, but I have used more readily available cornmeal and topped it with beer-infused beans, beetroot pickles and a sprightly avocado cream.

There are four elements to this dish, but don’t let that put you off. The pickles and avocado cream are fairly quick to make and both those and the beans can be made in advance.

Prep 20 min
Cook 1 hr
Serves 4

For the drunken beans
2 tsp olive oil
1 medium white onion, peeled and chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
1 medium jalapeño, deseeded and finely chopped
1 ½ tsp salt
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 tbsp hot smoky paprika
2 x 400g tins pinto beans, drained
330ml pale ale or dark beer suitable for vegans

For the pickles
250g or 2 medium beetroots, peeled and grated
¼ or 150g red cabbage, finely sliced
100ml apple cider vinegar
1 tsp salt

For the avocado cream
2 small ripe avocados
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
½ tsp salt

For the gorditas
150g fine cornmeal
150g plain flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
160ml-180ml water

Heat the olive oil for the beans in a medium-sized pan over a low heat and, when hot, add the chopped onion and garlic. Cook for eight minutes, until translucent and starting to caramelise, then add the jalapeño, salt, oregano and paprika. Stir to coat the onions, then cook for four minutes to soften the jalapeño. Add the beans to the pan, stir to combine, then increase the heat to high and add the beer. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, prepare the pickles and the avocado cream. For the pickles, combine the beetroot and sliced cabbage in a small mixing bowl and add the vinegar and salt. Mix well so that everything is coated, and leave to pickle for 30 minutes.

For the avocado cream, combine the avocado flesh, vinegar, oil and salt in a blender, and blitz for one or two minutes until completely smooth. Depending on the ripeness of your avocado, you might need to add a teaspoon or two of water to get a silky mayonnaise like texture.

Finally, the gorditas. Mix the cornmeal, flour, salt and baking powder in a large bowl and make a well in the centre. Add the water a little at a time, using a spoon to bring the dough together each time. Once all the water is added, bring the dough together with your hands, knead into a smooth ball and rest for two minutes. Divide the dough into 12 even balls, each weighing around 50g, and roll each out on a lightly floured surface until you have a pleasingly chubby disc of dough roughly 5mm thick.

Fry the gorditas in batches in a heavy-based frying pan over a medium heat – two or three to the pan at a time, depending on the size of your pan. Fry the gorditas for two minutes a side, until crisp on the outside with no dark doughy spots. To serve, top each gordita with a spoonful of beans, some avocado cream and a pinch or two of pickles.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2018/sep/08/vegan-recipe-drunken-bean-and-avocado-gorditas-meera-sodha

Recipe: Yotam Ottolenghi’s Bulgur with tomato, aubergine and preserved lemon yoghurt

Bulgur with tomato, aubergine and preserved lemon yoghurt

 

Just look at all the pantry staples made with tomatoes – tinned, paste, passata, sun-dried and more – each a variation on the bright-red theme. It’s that desire to capture summer in a jar, tin or tube that provides cooks with some of their snappiest tools for layering tomatoey flavours. Yes, there’s nothing quite as glorious as a perfectly ripe, raw tomato, but in cooking, adding all its derivatives into the mix opens up a world of creatively fine-tuning sweetness, acidity and freshness.

This is made of three components – roasted aubergine, bulgur with tomato, and yoghurt sauce – all of which adorable on their own. Together, however, they make a truly memorable main.

Prep 15 min
Cook 45 min
Serves 4 as a main (It also works as a side dish, in which case these quantities will serve six to eight.)

2 large aubergines (500g net weight), cut into 3cm chunks
100ml olive oil
Salt and black pepper
2 onions, peeled and finely sliced
3 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
1 tsp ground allspice
400g cherry tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato paste
250g bulgur wheat
200g yoghurt
1 small preserved lemon, pips discarded, skin and flesh finely chopped
10g mint leaves (about 1 tbsp) finely shredded

Heat the oven to 220C/425F/gas 7. Put the aubergine in a large bowl with four tablespoons of oil, half a teaspoon of salt and a good grind of pepper. Mix, then spread out on a large oven tray lined with greaseproof paper and roast for 30-35 minutes, stirring once halfway, until the aubergines are caramelised and soft. Take out of the oven and leave to cool.

Meanwhile, put three tablespoons of oil in a large saute pan for which you have a lid and heat on a medium-high flame. Once hot, fry the onion for eight minutes, stirring a few times, until caramelised and soft. Add the garlic and allspice, fry for a minute, stirring continuously, until the garlic is aromatic and starting to brown, then add the cherry tomatoes, mashing them with a potato masher to break them up. Stir in the tomato paste, 400ml water and a teaspoon of salt, bring to a boil, turn down the heat to medium-low, cover and cook for 12 minutes. Add the bulgur, stirring it in so it’s completely coated, then turn off the heat and set aside for 20 minutes, so the bulgur can absorb all the liquid.

In a medium bowl, mix the yoghurt with the preserved lemon, half the mint and an eighth of a teaspoon of salt.

Divide the bulgur between four plates and serve with the yoghurt and aubergine alongside and a sprinkling of the remaining mint.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2018/aug/18/yotam-ottolenghi-tomato-recipes

 

Recipe: Hetty McKinnon’s Green bean tahini casserole with lentils and crispy turmeric shallots

Green bean tahini casserole with lentils and crispy turmeric shallots

100g (1⁄2 cup) puy lentils, rinsed (changed from black lentils in original)
Extra-virgin olive oil
1kg green beans, trimmed and halved
250g fresh shiitake mushrooms, coarsely chopped or sliced
2 thyme sprigs, leaves picked
90g (1⁄3 cup) tahini
Juice of 1⁄2 lemon
1 garlic clove, very finely chopped
Handful of chopped chives
Sea salt and black pepper

Crispy turmeric shallots

2 French shallots, finely sliced into rounds
2 tbsp rice flour
1⁄2 tsp ground turmeric
125ml (1⁄2 cup) sunflower or other high-temperature oil, plus extra if needed
Sea salt and black pepper

Substitute
Shiitake mushrooms: button or Swiss brown mushrooms
French shallots: small red onions
Rice flour: plain flour

Preheat the oven to 190C. Oil a large baking or gratin dish.

Bring a pot of salted water to the boil. Add the lentils, cover and cook for 15-20 minutes, until the lentils are just tender. Drain.

Meanwhile, make the crispy turmeric shallots. Toss the shallot rounds together with the rice flour, turmeric and a pinch of salt and pepper, using your hands to break up the rings so that they are evenly coated.

Heat the oil in a small saucepan until very hot (test with a wooden chopstick or wooden spoon; if it sizzles, the oil is ready). Add the shallot rings to the oil a handful at a time and fry until golden brown. When ready, place them on a paper towel to absorb excess oil and immediately sprinkle with some sea salt. Repeat until all the shallot rings are cooked. Allow to cool.

Heat a splash of olive oil in a large frying pan and add the beans. Season with sea salt and black pepper and cook for 5–7 minutes, until the beans are tender and turning golden. Remove from the pan and set aside. In the same pan, add another drizzle of oil along with the mushrooms and thyme and cook until the mushrooms have turned golden. Remove from the heat.

Place the tahini in a small bowl, add the lemon juice, garlic and chives
and slowly whisk in cold water, one tablespoon at a time, until the mixture is the consistency of thickened cream. Season with sea salt and lots of black pepper.

Combine the beans with the mushrooms, lentils and tahini sauce. Transfer to the baking dish and bake for 10-12 minutes. Take the dish out of the oven, top with the crispy turmeric shallots and return to the oven for another five minutes. Serve immediately.

Tips

The crispy turmeric shallots can be made up to a day ahead. If you are short on time, buy ready-made crispy fried shallots from your Asian grocery store or supermarket.

The green bean casserole can be made the day ahead and topped and baked with the onions just before eating.

Other high-temperature oils include peanut or rice bran.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/food/2018/aug/19/hetty-mckinnons-green-bean-tahini-casserole-recipe

Recipe: Carrot marmalade

Great on crumpets or toast with (vegan) cheese but it also works just as well next to a dal or curry.

Prep 10 min
Macerate 2 hr
Cook 20 min
Makes 700g

1 tbsp coriander seeds
500g carrots, peeled and grated
1 small thumb fresh ginger, grated
200g caster sugar
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
Juice and zest of 1 orange
2 tbsp runny honey
100ml white wine vinegar
Salt

Bash the coriander seeds in a mortar and tip into a bowl; add the grated carrots, ginger, sugar and zests, and put into the fridge to macerate for at least two hours to draw out the liquid.

When the carrots are done, mix the honey, citrus juices and vinegar with half a teaspoon of salt in a large heavy-based pan, and stir until the salt has dissolved.

Tip in the carrot mixture and slowly bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes, until the carrots and ginger are tender. Turn the heat up and boil until almost all the liquid has evaporated. You will need to stir it towards the end to make sure it doesn’t stick.

Spoon into warm sterilised jars. It will keep for 18 months but, once opened, store it in the fridge and eat within a month.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/aug/10/anna-jones-recipes-carrot-marmalade-vegetarian-roast

Recipe: Yotam Ottolenghi’s sushi rice cakes with chilli and spring onion dipping sauce

Wet your hands to shape the cakes, otherwise things will get very sticky. You can shape them ahead of time and fry at the last minute, if you prefer. And simply omit the chilli from the dipping sauce to make this child-friendly.

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Prep 5 min
Cook 1 hr 20 min
Makes 16

300g sushi rice
60ml rice vinegar
2½ tbsp caster sugar
Salt
2 tsp cornflour
2 tbsp groundnut oil
2 tsp sesame oil

For the dipping sauce
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp mirin
1 spring onion, finely sliced
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
2 tsp groundnut oil
½ small garlic clove, peeled and finely chopped

Put the rice in a large bowl of cold water and stir with your hands for 10 seconds, to help release the starch. Drain into a large sieve, refresh under cold running water, then return the rice to the bowl. Cover again with cold water and repeat the stirring and draining procedure four or five times, until the water in the bowl is almost clear. Return the drained rice to the bowl, cover with fresh water, leave to soak for 30 minutes, then drain one final time.

Put the drained rice in a medium saucepan, pour on 360ml cold water, cover the pan and bring to a boil. Once boiling, turn down the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes, without lifting the lid or stirring. Turn off the heat and leave the rice, still covered, to rest for 10 minutes.

Put the vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan with three-quarters of a teaspoon of salt. Heat gently, just until the sugar dissolves, then pour all over the rice.

Sprinkle the cornflour over the rice and then, using a spatula, very carefully stir the rice, so it’s all coated. Cover the pan again and leave to sit for 15 minutes more.

Meanwhile, make the dipping sauce by mixing all the ingredients.

When you’re ready to shape the cakes, wet your hands and have ready a damp plate to put the cakes on. Take about 100g of the rice mix and form into a roughly 4cm-wide x 2cm-thick cake. Put on the damp plate and repeat with the remaining rice, wetting your hands again between forming each cake. You should end up with 16 cakes.

Put half the groundnut oil and half the sesame oil in a large, nonstick frying pan and turn the heat to medium-high. Once the oil is hot, carefully lay in half the rice cakes and fry for two to three minutes, until the base is golden brown – don’t be tempted to turn them over before they reach this stage, or they may fall apart. Carefully turn each cake, fry for two to three minutes more, then transfer to the damp plate with a slotted spoon and keep warm. Repeat with the remaining oil and rice cakes, then serve warm with the dipping sauce.

Source: Source: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jul/28/yotam-ottolenghi-party-recipes

Recipe: Yotam Ottolenghi’s sweet potato and quinoa fritters

You can play around with the veg in these, swapping carrots, pumpkin or butternut squash for the potatoes, if you like. Whatever you use, though, don’t leave the fritter mix sitting around for too long once it’s made, otherwise it will go soggy. These are best eaten straight after baking, but they are also good warmed up in a low oven a few hours later, or even the next day.

Prep 10 min
Cook 25 min
Makes 16

30g black quinoa
1-2 sweet potatoes, peeled and coarsely grated to get 250g
2 small baking potatoes, peeled and coarsely grated to get 250g
1 red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
25g picked coriander leaves, roughly chopped
75g plain flour
2 tbsp cornflour
1 tbsp ground coriander
1 tbsp ground cumin
Salt and black pepper
400ml sunflower oil
2 limes, cut into wedges, to serve

Cook the quinoa in plenty of boiling water for 10 minutes, until it is cooked but still has bite. Leave to drain in a sieve, then pat dry to remove as much liquid as possible.

Put both potatoes, the onion, coriander and quinoa in a large bowl and mix well to combine.

In a small bowl, whisk together both flours, the spices, a teaspoon and three-quarters of salt and a good grind of pepper. Slowly whisk in 100ml cold water, until you have a smooth batter.

Heat the oil in a medium saute pan on a medium-high flame.

Tip the batter into the vegetable bowl and mix together well. Using your hands, form the fritter mix into golf ball-sized portions weighing about 50g each, squeezing them very tightly to compact them and extract most of the liquid. Cook the fritters in batches, so as not to overcrowd the pan: carefully drop three or four balls into the hot oil and fry for about four minutes in total, turning them once halfway, until golden-brown and cooked through, then transfer to a plate lined with kitchen paper (if the fritters start browning too quickly, adjust the temperature of the oil as you go). Serve hot with the lime wedges alongside.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jul/28/yotam-ottolenghi-party-recipes

Recipe: Meera Sodha’s Caramelised fennel and carrot salad with mung beans and herbs

The dressing for this first course or light lunch is a salsa verde, a piquant herb and citrus sauce that works well with the sweet caramelised vegetables.

Prep 10 min
Cook 30 min
Serves 4

2 large carrots (400g), peeled and cut into thin batons
2 fennel bulbs (500g), thinly sliced and fronds reserved
3 garlic cloves, unpeeled
Olive oil
Salt
1 tsp chilli flakes
125g mung beans
125g giant couscous

For the dressing
10g dill leaves
30g parsley leaves
10g fresh mint leaves
1½ tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp capers, drained and chopped
1 tsp dijon mustard

Heat the oven to 200C/390F/gas 6 and line two baking trays with foil.

Lay the carrots, fennel and garlic cloves in a single layer across the two trays. Mix four tablespoons of oil, half a teaspoon of salt and the chilli flakes in a small bowl, spoon over the vegetables, then toss with your hands to make sure everything is well coated. Roast for 30 minutes, tossing the vegetables halfway through to ensure they cook evenly.

In the meantime, put the mung beans in a pan, cover with plenty of cold water, bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes. Add the couscous to the pot, turn up the heat and boil for six to eight minutes, until tender, then drain.

To make the dressing, finely chop the herbs and fennel tops, put in a bowl and add the chopped flesh of the roast garlic, the lemon juice, capers, mustard and a quarter-teaspoon of salt. Add enough olive oil to make a dressing (roughly three to five tablespoons), mix very well, then taste and adjust as you see fit.

To assemble the salad, spoon the mung beans and couscous on to a serving plate, lay the vegetables on top, then mix in the green herb dressing to taste and serve.

 

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jul/07/meera-sodha-recipe-caramelised-fennel-carrot-mung-bean-salad

 

Recipe: Yotam Ottolenghi’s Courgette, thyme and walnut salad

This needs to be dished up the moment its made, before the courgettes start ‘weeping’ and losing their freshness, so don’t let it sit around for too long. It goes well with hot food fresh from the grill or alongside a bunch of meze.

Prep 10 min
Cook 15 min
Serves 4

3 tbsp olive oil
10g thyme sprigs
1 lemon – peel finely shaved into 6 strips (avoid the bitter white pith), then juiced, to get 2 tbsp
1 garlic clove, smashed with the flat side of a knife
600g courgettes (a mix of green and yellow looks great, if you can find both), trimmed and shaved into long, thin ribbons with a potato peeler or mandoline
60g walnut halves, roughly chopped
Salt and black pepper
15g basil, roughly shredded

Put the oil, thyme, lemon peel and garlic in a small saucepan on a low heat and leave to infuse for eight minutes, until the oil becomes aromatic and the garlic, lemon and thyme start to colour. Take off the heat, leave to cool, then strain the oil into a large bowl. Pick the leaves off the sprigs and add to the oil; discard the sprigs, lemon and garlic.

Put the courgettes, walnuts, lemon juice, a third of a teaspoon of salt and plenty of pepper into the oil, then massage the courgettes for a minute or so – they will break up a little – then stir in the basil and serve at once.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jun/23/yotam-ottolenghi-courgette-recipes

Recipe: Anna Jones’ Four colours of portable picnic dips

Each of these easy dips use tinned pulses as a base. They all follow the same formula: once you get the hang of the ratios, you can experiment and try different flavour combinations. They each follow the same basic method.

Prep 20 min
Serves 4

Easy hummus
Pulse: 1 x 400g tin chickpeas
Garlic: 1 small clove
Tahini: 1 tbsp
Citrus: Juice and zest of 1 lemon
Liquid: 4 tbsp olive oil, 100ml ice water
Top with: olive oil, toasted and bashed coriander seeds, lemon zest, pul biber (Turkish chilli flakes)

Black bean and cumin hummus
Pulse: 1 x 400g tin black beans
Garlic: 1 small clove
Tahini: 1 tbsp black tahini
Citrus: Juice of 2 limes
Liquid: 4 tbsp olive oil, 200ml ice water
Top with: black sesame seeds, toasted cumin seeds

Summer herbs butterbean dip
Pulse: 1 x 400g tin butter beans
Garlic: ½ small clove
Liquid: 4 tbsp olive oil, 150ml ice water
Citrus: Juice of 1 lemon
Top with: more herbs, olive oil

Pink cannellini and beetroot dip
Pulse: 1 x 400g tin cannellini beans
Garlic: 1 small clove
Liquid: 200g cooked beetroot, drained and pureed
Tahini: 1 tbsp
Citrus: Juice of ½ lemon and ½ orange
Liquid: 200g cooked beetroot, drained and pureed
Top with: orange and lemon zest, sliced radishes

Put the drained tin of pulses, garlic, tahini (if using) and citrus juice and zest (if using) into a food processor and blitz smooth, adding the oil/water/beetroot bit by bit until you have a creamy dip. Add your toppings, then serve with raw vegetables, crackers and flatbread for dipping.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jun/18/anna-jones-recipes-puy-lentil-picnic-salad-dips#img-1

Recipe: Anna Jones’ Spiced and herbed puy lentil salad


A salad that travels well and is more than a sum of its parts. Rice, quinoa or normal couscous can be used in place of the giant couscous if you like.

Prep 20 min
Cook 40 min
Serves 4

100g raisins or currants
4 tbsp red-wine vinegar
1 x 400g tin cooked puy lentils, drained, or 250g home-cooked
150g wholemeal giant couscous
Olive oil
4 sticks celery, finely chopped, any leaves reserved
1 large bunch each parsley and coriander, leaves picked

For the dressing
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
Seeds from 4 cardamom pods or ¼ tsp ground cardamom
4 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp cider vinegar
Zest and juice of 2 unwaxed limes
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp dijon mustard

Soak the raisins in the vinegar and leave to one side.

If you are cooking your lentils yourself, then cook in boiling water for 20-30 minutes until soft but still holding their shape. Cook the giant couscous in boiling salted water according to packet instructions, then drain well.

Make the dressing. Toast the cumin and coriander seeds in a dry pan for a couple of minutes, until they smell fragrant. Add the ground spices, stir quickly, then take the pan off the heat and tip the lot into a mortar. Bash with the pestle until they are broken down a bit. Tip into a jam jar, add all the rest of the dressing ingredients and shake to mix well.

Drain the lentils and put in a large bowl with the couscous, chopped celery and dressing. Roughly chop most of the herbs on a board, drain the raisins and add to the pile of herbs, chop the lot together, then add to the lentils. Season with salt and pepper, mix well and taste, adding more salt, pepper, lime and oil as needed. Remember, it will mellow a little as it sits. When you are ready to eat, scatter over the rest of the herbs and any celery leaves, and pile into bowls.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jun/18/anna-jones-recipes-puy-lentil-picnic-salad-dips#img-1

Recipe: Yotam Ottolenghi’s Grilled and marinated sandwich vegetables

Great on a sandwich and also work in a salad or as antipasti. If you have any of the aromatic oil left over, it’s great on pasta and salad.

Prep 15 min
Cook 1 hr
Serves 4

1 medium fennel bulb
200ml olive oil
Salt and black pepper
240g baby aubergines, trimmed and quartered (or 1 regular aubergine, cut into 10cm x 2cm wedges)
5 multicoloured Romano peppers
2 large mild red chillies
1 garlic bulb, top fifth trimmed to expose the bulbs
1 lemon – skin finely shaved of in 6 strips, then juiced, to get 2 tbsp
10g oregano
2-3 spring onions, finely sliced
5g dill, roughly chopped
½ tbsp coriander seeds, toasted and crushed
½ tbsp pink peppercorns, toasted and crushed

Heat the grill to its highest setting and put a rack at the top of the oven. Cut the fennel in half lengthways and then into 1.5cm-thick batons, keeping some base attached, so the pieces hold together. Gently toss the fennel in a teaspoon of oil and a good pinch of salt, then lay out on a large oven tray.

Toss the aubergines in a teaspoon of oil and a good pinch of salt, and lay cut side up on the same tray. Grill for 12 minutes, until well charred, then transfer the aubergines to a large bowl. Turn over the fennel pieces, grill for another six minutes, then add to the aubergine bowl.

Turn off the grill and set the oven to 220C/425F/gas 7. Put the peppers and chillies on an oven tray lined with baking paper. Drizzle a little oil over the garlic bulb, sprinkle with salt and pepper, then wrap tightly in foil and add to the pepper tray. Roast for 25 minutes, turning halfway, until the peppers are blackening on both sides. Remove the peppers and chillies, and roast the garlic for 10 minutes more.

Put the peppers and chillies in a bowl, cover tightly with clingfilm, leave for 30 minutes, then peel off the skin, discarding the seeds, stalks and any liquid. Tear the peppers into 8cm strips, roughly chop the chillies and put both in the fennel bowl.

When cool enough to handle, unwrap the garlic and squeeze out the flesh into the fennel bowl. Add the remaining oil, the last six ingredients, half a teaspoon of salt and a good grind of pepper, and mix gently to coat. Ideally, leave .

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jun/16/yotam-ottolenghi-picnic-recipes

Recipe: Yotam Ottolenghi’s Giant couscous with golden raisins, lemon and almonds

This is just as good eaten at room temperature as it is warm. It’s an ideal portable meal, because it can be made well in advance, it’s easy to transport and it will keep for hours.

Prep 10 min
Cook 25 min
Serves 4

250g giant couscous
500ml vegetable stock
Salt and black pepper
1 lemon
½ tbsp olive oil
50g golden (or normal) raisins (or replace with chopped dates)
1 tsp cumin seeds, toasted and ground in a mortar
60g flaked almonds, toasted
10g dill leaves, roughly chopped
10g basil leaves, roughly torn

For the parsley oil
30g parsley leaves
120ml olive oil
1 small garlic clove, peeled

Put the couscous in a medium saucepan for which you have a lid, and dry toast, stirring occasionally, over a medium-high heat until some of the pearls begin to colour – about four minutes. Add the stock and a half-teaspoon of salt, bring to a boil, then cover and turn the heat to low. Cook for 10 minutes, until all the liquid is absorbed, then turn off the heat and leave the couscous to sit, covered, for 10 minutes more.

Meanwhile, finely grate the lemon peel into a small bowl – you should have two teaspoons of zest. Using a small, sharp knife, trim the top and tail off the zested lemon, then cut away the skin and pith. Release the lemon segments by cutting between the membranes, then cut each segment into rough chunks and add to the zest bowl with any remaining juice squeezed from what’s left of the lemon – you need about a teaspoon. After the couscous has rested, stir in the lemon mix and the oil.

Put the raisins in a bowl, cover with about 100ml boiling water, leave to soak for five minutes, then drain. Mix the raisins, cumin, almonds, herbs, a quarter-teaspoon of salt and a good grind of black pepper into the couscous.

Put all the ingredients for the parsley oil in a blender with an eighth of a teaspoon of salt and blitz until smooth.

Pack the couscous into a portable container and spoon the oil on top (though, if you’re serving this at the table, spoon on the oil just before you eat).

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jun/16/yotam-ottolenghi-picnic-recipes

 

Meera Sodha’s Wild rice, chickpea and aubergine salad with a tamarind and yoghurt dressing

Prep 20 min
Cook 50 min
Rest 10 min
Serves 4

For the rice
1 red onion, peeled
½ large cauliflower (about 600g)
350g baby aubergines (ie, about 4 slim ones)
300g vine tomatoes, halved
Rapeseed oil
1 tsp salt
3 garlic cloves, unpeeled
250g basmati and wild rice
400g tin chickpeas
15g fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped

For the tamarind dressing
1 tbsp tamarind paste
1 ½ tbsp date syrup
1 tbsp rapeseed oil
¼ tsp ground red chilli
½ tsp ground cumin
Salt

For the ‘yoghurt’ dressing
100ml non-dairy yoghurt
Salt

Heat the oven to 180C/350F/gas 4 and line two large oven trays with foil. Chop the onion from above into wedges, separate into “petals”, then arrange on one half of one tray. Break down the cauliflower into bite-sized pieces and put these on the other half of the tray.

Cut the aubergines lengthways into quarters, and put them on one half of the second tray; lay the tomatoes on the other half.

Whisk four tablespoons of oil with a teaspoon of salt, pour this over all the vegetables, then toss with your hands to coat all the surfaces and get into the nooks and crannies. Bash the garlic cloves with the back of a knife and put on the aubergine tray, then roast the onion and cauliflower for 20-25 minutes and the aubergine, tomatoes and garlic for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, wash the rice in a sieve under the cold tap until the water runs clear, then tip into a large saucepan. Drain the chickpeas, add to the rice, then cover with plenty of cold water and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat and leave to simmer for 18 minutes, or until tender. Drain into a sieve, then cover with a clean tea towel and leave for 10 minutes.

Now make the dressings. In a small bowl, mix the tamarind paste, date syrup and oil with a tablespoon of water. Add the chilli, cumin and a quarter-teaspoon of salt, and mix again.

Put the yoghurt in a second small bowl. Squeeze the flesh from the roast garlic on to a board and finely chop, then stir into the yoghurt with a quarter-teaspoon of salt.

To bring the salad together, in a bowl mix the rice and chickpeas with the baked vegetables, toss with the tamarind dressing and transfer to a portable container. Serve drizzled with the yoghurt dressing and scattered with coriander.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jun/16/meera-sodha-recipe-wild-rice-chickpea-aubergine-salad-tamarind-dressing