Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Liver and bacon with onion gravy - Hairy Bikers

450g lambs’ or calves’ liver, sliced (thawed, if frozen)
4 tsp plain flour
20g butter
1 tsp sunflower oil
1 medium onion, fairly thinly sliced
2 rindless lean back bacon rashers (about 55g), each cut into 2cm wide strips
500ml beef stock, made with 1 stock cube
2 tsp tomato ketchup
flaked sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

Serves 4

Rinse the liver in a colander under cold water and drain it well on kitchen paper. Put 2 teaspoons of the flour in a large bowl and season with plenty of salt and pepper. Add the liver to the bowl and turn it in the flour until lightly coated.

Melt half the butter with the oil in a large non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. Tap the excess flour off each slice of liver and add them to the pan using tongs. Cook for 1½–2 minutes on each side until lightly browned but not completely cooked through, then pop them on to a plate.

Turn down the heat and melt the remaining butter in the same pan. Add the sliced onion and cook for a minute or so, stirring to separate the layers. Next, add the bacon and cook together for another 5 minutes or until the onion is softened and pale golden brown, stirring often.

Sprinkle the remaining flour over the onion and bacon and cook for a few seconds, stirring. Pour the hot stock slowly into the pan, stirring constantly. Bring to a simmer, stir in the ketchup and cook over a medium heat until the gravy is thickened and glossy.

Put the liver back in the pan and heat it through in the onion gravy for 2–3 minutes until hot, stirring. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve the liver and bacon with a small portion of mashed potatoes and lots of freshly cooked greens.


Thursday, August 17, 2017

Cheesy broccoli pasta bake

Serves 4
280g penne
280g broccoli, cut into florets
25g butter
25g plain flour
300ml milk
1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
140g mature cheddar, grated

Cook the pasta, steam the broccoli on top for 4-5 mins until tender. Drain well, then heat the grill.

Heat the butter in a saucepan and stir in the flour. Cook for 1 min, then gradually add the milk, stirring well between each addition. Bring to the boil, stirring, then simmer for 2 mins, before stirring in the mustard, half the cheese and seasoning.

Mix the pasta and broccoli into the sauce and spoon into an ovenproof dish. Scatter over the remaining cheese and place under a hot grill for 3-4 mins until golden and bubbling.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Simple Roast Guinea Fowl

1 onion, cut into wedges, through the root
2 carrots, quartered lengthways
1 large potato, cut into bite-size chunks
1 tbsp olive oil
1 guinea fowl
1 tbsp butter at room temperature, plus 2 tsp for the gravy
6 garlic cloves, unpeeled
few thyme sprigs
300ml chicken stock
100ml white or red wine
2 tsp plain flour
1 tbsp redcurrant jelly or creme fresh

Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Toss the vegetables with the oil and some seasoning in a large flameproof roasting tin. Place the bird on top of the veg, lift the breast skin and insert some butter Season generously, then roast for 40 mins.

Remove from the oven and give the veg a stir while adding the garlic and thyme. Pour 200ml stock and the wine over the veg and return to oven to roast for another 20 mins or so until the bird is cooked through and the juices run clear.

Remove the bird, place on a serving plate, cover with foil to keep warm and leave to rest. Turn the oven up to 200C/180C fan/gas 6 and roast the veg for a further 15 mins until tender.

Remove the veg with a slotted spoon and transfer to the serving plate with the bird. Mix 2 tsp butter and flour in a small bowl to form a smooth paste. Place the roasting tin with all the cooking juices, plus any resting juices, on the hob. Whisk the paste and redcurrant jelly into the juices until dissolved, then add the remaining stock and extra seasoning, if you like. Bubble for a few mins until the sauce thickens. Slice and serve the guinea fowl, crisp bacon and the veg with the sauce on the side.
As a variation, I reduced the cooking liquid and added some cream and sauted Chestnut Mushrooms to make the sauce.

Monday, August 07, 2017

Spicy Garlic Broccoli

Cooking time:  about 10 mins

Serves: 4

2 tablespoons sesame oil
5 spring onions - roughly chopped
5 cloves garlic - finely chopped
1 x 2" piece of ginger - finely chopped
1 - 2 teaspoon red chilli flakes
400g broccoli - roughly chopped into small pieces
3 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons soy sauce

1] Heat the oil in a wok over high heat.
2] Add in the spring onions, garlic and ginger and stir fry for about a minute.
3] Stir in the chilli flakes and then add the broccoli.
4] Fry for a couple of minutes and then add the water to help the broccoli cook through.
5] When the broccoli is al dente, stir in the soy sauce and salt and pepper.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Cauliflower Cheese - Felicity Cloake

1 litre milk
½ an onion
1 clove
1 bay leaf
75g butter
50g plain flour
Salt and pepper
1 medium cauliflower
4 slices white bread, in breadcrumbs
100g tasty Lancashire cheese, grated
75ml double cream
Nutmeg, grated
25g cheddar cheese, grated

1. Put the milk in a small pan and poke the clove into the onion. Add this, a pinch of salt and the bay leaf to the milk and heat gently to a simmer. Take off the heat and leave to infuse for 15 minutes, then remove the onion and bay leaf.

2. Melt 50g butter in a medium pan over a medium-low heat, and stir in the flour. Cook for a couple of minutes until it smells biscuity, then add the milk, one ladle at a time, stirring it in until you have a smooth sauce. Turn the heat right down and leave to simmer for 15–20 minutes until thick.

3. Meanwhile, bring a large pan of well-salted water to the boil. Cut the cauliflower into florets and boil them for 4 minutes, until just tender. Drain thoroughly and keep warm.

4. Melt most of the remaining butter in a frying pan over a medium-high heat and fry the cauliflower until slightly browned and caramelised. Season and spoon into a baking dish, then put the rest of the butter into the pan, add the breadcrumbs and fry until crunchy and golden. Season. Preheat the grill to medium-high.

5. Stir the Lancashire into the sauce until it melts, and then add the cream, a grating of nutmeg and season to taste. Pour over the cauliflower. Top with the grated cheddar, followed by the breadcrumbs, and grill until golden and bubbling.

From the Guardian

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Joe Wicks Chicken & mozzarella salad with warm tomato dressing

Prep 15 Mins
Cook 20 Mins
Serves 4

1.25 litres chicken stock
4 skinless chicken breasts
5 tbsp olive oil
3 spring onions, finely sliced
2 large sprigs of rosemary, needles only
1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely sliced
16 cherry tomatoes, roughly halved
salt and pepper
6 tbsp breadcrumbs
2 avocados, stoned and cut into wedges
2 x 110g balls of mozzarella, torn into large chunks

To Serve
2 large handfuls of rocket
1-2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

• Pour the chicken stock into a large lidded saucepan and bring it to the boil. Slide in the chicken breasts – if the liquid doesn’t cover them, add a little more stock or water. Bring back up to the boil, clamp on the lid and then reduce to a low heat. Cook the chicken breasts on a very low simmer for 10 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat and leave the chicken in the warm stock for a further 10 minutes with the lid still on.

• Meanwhile, make the dressing. Pour 4½ tablespoons of the oil into a saucepan and add the spring onions, rosemary, garlic, red chilli and tomatoes along with a good grinding of salt and pepper. Place the saucepan over a medium to low heat and cook for 10 minutes, being sure not to let the oil get too hot. Turn off the heat and leave the mixture to sit while you prepare the rest of the salad.

• Heat the remaining ½ tablespoon of oil in a large frying pan over a medium-to-high heat. When it is hot, tip in the breadcrumbs and fry for about 3 minutes, or until they are crisp and golden. Transfer the breadcrumbs to a clean piece of kitchen roll to drain off the excess oil.

• Carefully remove the cooked chicken from the stock and tear it up with your hands or a couple of forks. Place the chicken on a large serving plate along with the avocado and mozzarella chunks. Spoon over the warm tomato dressing, then top with the rocket and the fried breadcrumbs. I like to serve this salad with a little balsamic vinegar on the side.

NOTE: I use left over roast chicken to put this dish together rather than taking time to do the poaching first step...

Sunday, July 09, 2017

Nigel Slaters really juicy, spicy Pork meatballs

a handful of smoked bacon or pancetta
500g minced pork
groundnut oil

For the seasoning
2 shallots or 4 small spring onions
3 or 4 small, hot, red chillies
a small bunch of coriander
4 lime leaves or 2 thick stalks of lemon grass
3 or 4 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed

Chop the shallots or spring onions finely, then chop the chillies even finer, first removing the seeds if you don't like things too hot. Scrub the roots of the coriander and chop them and the leaves finely, discarding the stems. Roll the lime leaves up and shred them finely, then chop them; if you are using lemon grass, discard the coarse outer leaves, then chop the tender inside leaves very thinly. All this can be done in a food processor

Chop the bacon or pancetta and add it, with the seasoning above, to the minced pork. Mix in a good pinch of salt, then cover with clingfilm (otherwise it will taint everything in your fridge) and leave to rest and chill for half an hour or more

Shape the seasoned pork into small balls. The size is up to you. If you flatten them slightly you will get more of that delectable savoury crust when you fry them. I tend to start with a ball of mince the size of a walnut in its shell, then flatten it slightly. To cook them, you will need to warm a little oil in a heavy frying pan, then lay the meatballs in - without crowding them - and let them colour enticingly on both sides before turning the heat down a bit and letting them cook all the way through. You should find them done after four or five minutes. Test one by breaking it open: the centre should be juicy but not especially pink.