Hello again! I hope you all had a restful and jolly Christmas break, and are still in holiday-mode until after the New Year festivities. Party season is still in full swing, of course, and if you’re entertaining over the next few weeks and looking for a dinner party starter or light lunch that looks impressive, tastes incredible but is actually super-simple to put together, this Celeriac & Hazelnut Soup will be right up your street.
Celeriac is one of those brilliant root vegetables which magically transforms to a velvet-smooth soup when puréed. You can pair it with all sorts of festive flavours – leftover chestnut purée, apple or pear, fresh herbs or watercress, mustard, and many more – but here I decided to experiment with sweet hazelnut milk and crunchy chopped hazelnuts as a garnish, and it worked really well.
Continue reading “Recipe: Celeriac & Hazelnut Soup”
Here’s the final recipe in this four-part series for an easy-peasy prep-ahead Vegetarian & Vegan Christmas Dinner. There are still a few more festive treats to come next week, but this completes the main course ideas!
Carrots just have to be there on the Christmas table, but are rarely given much attention, as just another vegetable to peel, chop and boil. Here I’ve tried something a little different, cooking them quickly in just enough water to part-boil, part-steam them, then finishing with a sweet and fruity orange and maple glaze
Continue reading “Christmas Dinner Recipe: Orange & Maple Carrots”
You can’t have Christmas Dinner without a bowl of sprouts, but let’s face it, when boiled and soggy they really do live up to Nigel Slater’s scathing description: “Why are you even thinking of buying a bag of pungent, watery balls that give you wind?”.
However, here’s a method of cooking which I’ve found transforms them into something completely different. Crunchy, with golden crispy edges and flavoured with ginger and sesame seeds, there’s absolutely nothing stinky about these little beauties!
Continue reading “Christmas Dinner Recipe: Ginger & Sesame Brussels Sprouts”
Here’s the second in the recipe series for the easy, prep-ahead Veggie & Vegan Christmas Dinner. Today, we’re looking at arguably the most important part of any festive feast, the roast potatoes.
There’s nothing fancy or high-tech going on here, just a simple but failsafe method for perfectly crispy roast potatoes, infused with traditional flavours of garlic and rosemary.
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Here’s an idea for some crowd-pleasing party nibbles, which can be either vegetarian or vegan depending on your choice of fillings. They are lovely served with a dip, either a spicy salsa or maybe a creamy avocado mayonnaise, but just as good served as they are straight from the oven.
They have a little surprise inside in the form of all your favourite pizza toppings – I used chilli, olive and caper, but you can use just about anything you like. Just remember that your fillings won’t have much time to cook being buried inside the dough, so avoid raw veg which needs a good time to cook, or anything which will release water as it cooks and could make your dough ball sloppy. Continue reading “Recipe: Mini Calzone Dough Balls”
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There’s now’t more British than a lovely ploughman’s lunch, and piling a ploughman’s between two slices of bread must surely be the ultimate cheese sandwich. What a fitting end to Cheese Sandwich Week and the #BetterWithLeerdammer challenge.
A couple of slices of creamy Leerdammer Original are piled up with picked onions, fruit chutney, lettuce, tomato and a wholegrain mustard mayonnaise. Finishing touches of fresh, juicy pear slices set this off beautifully. Continue reading “Cheese Sandwich Week – Day 5: Cheese & Pear Ploughman’s”
For years I’ve been looking at Vietnamese Spring Roll recipes and two thoughts have crossed my mind: 1) YUM. 2) Who on earth has enough time on their hands to fiddle around making those?
Well, do you know who? Me. And you too. They are actually a doddle, and oddly satisfying to make. The rice paper wrappers are just brilliant – stretchy and sticky but in a really helpful way when you come to roll them up. They end up looking elegant and professional even if you’re all fingers and thumbs like me. (Confession: I accidentally poked a huge hole in one of these wrappers, but you would never know it!).
Continue reading “Recipe: Chilli Peanut Vietnamese Rolls”
So you think you can’t make bread? Think again! If you’re baffled by yeast and bored by kneading, this Cheddar & Chilli Sweet Potato Bread is the recipe for you. Its a moist and dense bread – not a sandwich loaf by any means, but more something to serve in wedges and dunk in your soup, chilli or Borlotti Bean Minestrone Hotpot as I did!
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If, like me, you could happily eat gratin dauphinois every day of the week, but are sensible enough not to as one portion contains roughly a million calories, then this Jerusalem Artichoke Boulangères might just be for you. It is similar in that root vegetables are thinly sliced and layered, but cooked in stock and milk rather than cream. It works brilliantly with almost any root veg – traditionally potato, but also celeriac, parsnip, even carrot. Continue reading “Recipe: Jerusalem Artichoke Boulangères”