Monday, 25 February 2013

Bangers and Mash - With A Twist

It's cold still and we needed something warming inside us - Liz after a hard day at work me just from popping down the shed to feed the garden birds! Serves two or three.

6 nice meaty sausages (I used Waitrose Pork, Apricot and Ginger)
1/2 Red Cabbage - shredded
1 Medium Onion - finely sliced
8 Soft Dried Apricots - halved
100ml Cider
1 tblsp Vegetable Oil

Gently fry the sausages in the oil until they are coloured on all sides. Add the onion and continue frying for a few minutes until the soften. Add the red cabbage and the apricots and stir. Add the cider, season then cover and cook on a low heat for ten minutes or until the vegetables and the sausages are cooked.

Serve with plenty of creamy mashed potatoes with a decent mustard and a glass of cider.

Sunday, 24 February 2013

Birthday Supper with Friends

It was my birthday yesterday and after returning from a visit to the Natural History Museum where we viewed the always wonderful Wildlife Photo exhibition I cooked supper. It was a combination of items bought from the Waitrose deli counter and home cooked so I still had the pleasure of cooking without having to spend so much time in the kitchen that I didn't see my friends.

Alongside marinated anchovies, olives, bread and oil I prepared some Roasted Peppers with Manchego Cheese. This was followed by a Smoked Salmon Fillets with Horseradish and Dill Yoghurt with Beetroot Risotto. Pudding was Melting Chocolate Orange cakes by Gu. It all seemed to go down well!

Roasted Peppers
This can hardly be called a recipe to be honest! Serves 4 as part of a mixed starter or two with some bread and a green salad for a nice lunch.

2 long sweet red Romano peppers cut in half long ways
1 clove of garlic cut into slivers 
1/2 tsp of oak smoked paprika
50g of mancahgo cheese grated or in thin slices
25g Parmesan cheese grated
1tblsp olive oil (I used a smoked oil for extra flavour)

Place the peppers in a baking dish, cut side up and sprinkle the garlic, paprika and oil over them. Bake in a moderate oven (150-180C) for 10-15 minutes until starting to soften. Add the manchego cheese and the Parmesan cheese then place back in the oven for 5-10 minutes to allow the cheeses to melt.

Smoked Salmon with Beetroot Risotto and Horseradish Yoghurt
For four people use the recipe for Beetroot Risotto I've detailed before but leave out the Bacon and the Parmesan Cheese and add the juice of half a lemon at the end. If you cant get lightly smoked fillets then normal salmon or trout fillets will do.

Ingredients (for four)
Beetroot Risotto
4 Lightly Smoked Salmon Fillets (about 100-150g each)
1 tblsp Olive Oil
1 tblsp Greek Yoghurt
1 tsp Creamed Horseradish
2 tsp finely chopped fresh dill

Mix the yoghurt, horseradish and dill together and set aside.
Make the risotto as per the instructions.
While the risotto is resting (after cooking with the lid on in a warm place), pan fry the salmon fillets in the oil.
Place the salmon fillet on  the risotto, place a spoon full of the horseradish yoghurt on the salmon fillet and sprinkle with a little reserved chopped dill if desired.