Autumn Classes

Two new courses coming up this Autumn

Saturday 14th October – Middle Eastern Feast
Join me to talk about, cook and eat dishes such as a Broad Bean stew with pomegranate, steamed rice cooked with crispy potatoes, a mildly spiced, fragrant muhammara dip. To finish we’ll be making a middle eastern inspired raspberry samosa served with rosewater infused cream.

Saturday 11th November – Flavours Of India
Together we’ll be making and eating Indian dishes such as a spinach and paneer curry, potatoes fried with garlic and sesame, a simple tarka dal and deep fried vegetable pakoras. For dessert we’ll make mango fool, served with some home made cardamom shortbread.

Classes run from my kitchen in Chalfont St Peter, just 20 minutes from London, starting at 10am and finishing up with lunch. We aim to finish around 1pm.

£45 per person. Price includes all ingredients, recipe cards and aprons. You also get to take home any leftovers.
For more details or to reserve your place contact me at foodfrom4@gmail.com or at facebook.com/foodfrom4

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Baked Buffalo Cauliflower Wings

If you follow FoodFrom4 on Instagram you’ll know that I am doing Veganuary once again. I’ve always struggled with the ethics of dairy and egg production but I’m doing Veganuary more as a way of a) trying to shed a little middle aged spread, and to expand my repertoire and try new dishes. I once met someone who knew how to cook six dishes. Monday night was chilli. Tuesday was Spaghetti Bolognese, etc. One night a week was take away night. I like to try new recipes, ideas, flavours and textures and going vegan for a month is a great way to get you thinking of creative ways to prepare plant based ingredients.

To me, cauliflower is an incredibly versatile vegetable. It works brilliantly in curries, in middle eastern inspired dishes, as a base for pizza and quiche, makes wonderful soups, can be used as a low carb alternative to mashed potato or in place of rice.

This recipe uses it as a replacement for chicken,the “traditional” way of preparing buffalo wings. These are baked too, rather than deep fried so perhaps not quite as crispy but I am sure just as tasty though having never eaten chicken wings I can’t be certain.

This makes enough to serve 4 people as a snack, starter or side dish.

1 head of cauliflower – cut into bite sized florets
125ml milk – dairy of alternative. I used almond milk
125ml water
125g plain flour – probably works with gram flour too if you are avoiding gluten
1 clove garlic – very finely chopped or crushed
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika powder
pinch salt
black pepper
250ml hot chili sauce. Frank’s is the authentic way of doing it but I used Mitchell’s hot chili sauce. Anything with spice and sweetness will do
1 tablespoon butter of alternative – I used Flora Freedom

Put the oven onto 200C and line a baking sheet with parchment.

Mix the flour with the milk, water, garlic, cumin, paprika, salt and pepper into a thickish batter. Dip each cauliflower floret into the batter, shake off the excess and lay on the lined baking tray in a single layer. Pop this into the oven for 25 minutes still browned.

Meanwhile put the chili sauce and butter into a pan, melt slowly, mix well and set to one side.

Take the cauliflower out of the oven and into a large bowl. Pour the chili sauce over then mix well, but gently to get every floret covered in the red chili sauce. Place back on the lined baking sheet in a single layer again and return to the oven for another 25 minutes.

Serve with soured cream (or the Oatly alternative)

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Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Herbs

100g puy or green lentils
1 bay leaf
200g of your favourite grain (bulgur, millet, farro, quinoa, pearl barley)
1 smallish cauliflower of half a large one
half a teaspoon each of ground cumin, paprika, turmeric, cinnamon, salt
a handful of cherry tomatoes – halved
half a cucumber – diced
4-5 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
juice of half a lemon
1 clove of garlic – minced
2-3 large handfuls of herbs (parsley, mint)
pomegranate seeds

Start by cooking the lentils in a pan of water with the bay leaf. Bring to the boil then simmer gently for around 20 minutes until tender but holding their shape. Drain, rinse under cold water, discard the bay leaf and leave to one side.

Cook your grains as per the instructions. If in a hurry use bulgur as they don’t need cooking, just soaking in boiling water for 20-25 minutes. Once cooked, drain and allow to cool.

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large frying pan. Cur the cauliflower into smallish florets then fry in the oil over a medium to high heat, stirring occasionally. Fry for 10 minutes until starting to brown. Add the ground spices and a splash of water, stir well until the cauliflower is coated with the spice mixture, cover with a lid and allow to steam for a further 4 minutes until tender then allow to cool.

Take a large bowl and add the remaining olive oil, pomegranate molasses, lemon juice, garlic and salt and pepper. Mix well then add the cooked grains, cauliflower, tomatoes and cucumber. Roughly chop the herbs and add them too. Mix well then transfer to a nice serving dish. Finally, scatter the pomegranate seeds over and serve with flat breads and natural soya or dairy yogurt.

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Roasted, Spiced Vegetables with Paneer

Roasted vegetables have always been a a standby in our house. Sunny, Mediterranean vegetables drenched in good olive oil and roasted, sometimes with chick peas, sometimes with cubes of squeaky halloumi and occasionally when feeling decadent, with both.

Sometimes however we need a change. I fancied something spicy, something curryish. Not hard to make, but takes a little care and attention. So why not roast a curry. Just chop everything, add the spices and pop in the oven while I can get on with other things.

The result was amazing. From now on I am going to roast all my curries. Well they do say people get lazier as they get older….

This makes enough for 4-6 people depending on how much bread you have. Also works really well the next day for lunch when all the flavours have deepened overnight. The paneer is optional. Leave it out for a vegan version.

1 onion – diced
2 cloves garlic – sliced
2-3 small potatoes – peeled and diced
1 red or green pepper – diced
1 courgette – diced
1x400g tin chick peas
3 ripe tomatoes – diced
250g paneer – diced
1 large whole chili – cut a slit in the side
1 teaspoon each of whole cumin seeds, black mustard seeds, fennel seeds, black onion seeds
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon ground cumin seeds
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon amchoor (if you can’t get amchoor use a splash of lemon juice)
sunflower oil
mustard oil
fresh coriander leaves – roughly chopped

Put the oven on to 200C

Take a large baking tray and put the vegetables, chick peas and spices in. Add a splash of each of the oils then gently mix with your hands to get everything coated in the oil and spices.

Pop in the oven for 25 minutes, turn occasionally. Add the paneer if using and return to the oven for another 15 minutes.

Take out of the oven, throw a handful of chopped coriander leaves over and serve with chutney, pickle, raita and breads. Leave the chili in the tray but you don’t have to eat it. It’s just there to add a little warmth to the dish.

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