Saturday, 17 April 2010

Smoked Haddock Risotto

Rice and smoked fish, a wonderful combination. Through in lots of parsley and some slowly softened leeks and you have a bowl of comfort food. Serves 2 generously or three less so.

2 medium leeks, finely sliced
1 clove of garlic finely chopped
175g of risotto rice
knob of butter
big handful of parsley finely chopped
1 ltr of stock (vegetable or fish, you may need more or less than this amount)
large fillet of smoked haddock (get the undyed if you can)
500ml or so of milk (just enough to cover the fish)
few peppercorns

Gently poach the haddock in the milk with a bay leaf, some peppercorns and chopped up parsley stalks. Meanwhile fry the garlic and leaks in a wide pan with the butter. When softened add the rice and fry briefly. Add the stock gradually until the rice has softened. Skin and flake the haddock and add to the rice with parsley. Stir gently to amalgamate and season to taste. Add an extra small knob of butter.

Divide between two warmed plates and grate a small amount of parmasan cheese over the top if you like.

Saturday, 10 April 2010

Pan Fried Pigeon Breasts with Potato Rosti and Gin and Blackberry Sauce

A few weeks ago I bought a pack of pigeon breasts from the Ealing farmers market. A hard day of wondering around Amersham's charity shops brought on a fierce appetite and this seemed like the perfect thing to satisfy it. Serves two hungry shoppers.

4 Pigeon Breasts (check them over for any shot that might be lurking within the flesh)

For the rosti
2 medium potatoes, peeled and grated
1 clove garlic, crushed
large knob of butter, melted
large pinch dried thyme
Salt and pepper

For the sauce:
1 small onion finely chopped
1 shot glass of gin
5 juniper berries crushed
1 small handful of blackberries (I usually have some in the freezer)

Grate the potato and mix in the thyme, garlic, melted butter and a good grind of salt and pepper. Heat a small frying pan and add the potato mixture. Fry until richly golden on one side then turn and continue frying.
Meanwhile fry the pigeon breasts in a little olive oil for 3-5 minutes on each side then put in a warm oven to keep warm.
Fry the finely chopped onion in the pan juices (add a little oil if you need to - pigeon is very lean and will give off little extra fat). Add the crushed juniper berries and deglaze the pan with the gin. Add the blackberries and cook until they have softened to a mush.
Serve with a bitter green salad.