Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Smoked Salmon, Avocado and Beetroot on Spelt Loaf

This is so simple it doesn't really warrant a 'recipe' - it was just such a delicious lunch that I felt it would be a shame not to share it on here. It also raked in a fair few likes on our Instagram page so I thought it was only fair to share the dish in full! It only takes a few minutes to throw together and - ta dah - you have yourself a colourful, fresh, healthy and tasty plateful. This would make an ideal lunch, brunch or light supper that also provides a welcome contrast to the grey January days!

For one generous portion you will need…

2 slices smoked salmon
2 slices spelt loaf or another good crusty loaf e.g. rye or sourdough 
Soft cheese (I used Philadelphia)
1/2 an avocado
1 small pre-cooked beetroot (I use the vacuum packed ones sold in most supermarkets)
Fresh dill
Black pepper
1 wedge of fresh lemon

You will need to…

- Pop your slices of crusty bread into the toaster.
- Once toasted, spread each slice with a generous layer of soft cheese.
- Top with your smoked salmon and then scatter over sliced avocado and cubed beetroot.
- Sprinkle some fresh dill and ground black pepper on top.
- Squeeze over the fresh lemon wedge and serve.

Enjoy! C x

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Mince Pie Twists

With the festive season drawing to a close, my adaptation of Gizzi Erskine's Mince Pie Straws are a novel and delicious way to use up any leftover mincemeat. These flakey puff pastry twists would make great sweet canapés or a lovely festive pud when served alongside a little crème fraîche or vanilla ice cream. With the inevitable 'New Year Detox' looming, this is your final excuse to indulge in some Christmassy baking - enjoy!

On another note - a massive thanks to those of you who voted for us as we have (miraculously) been shortlisted in the Food & Drink category for a UK Blog Award for the second year running! We're not quite sure how it happened as we totally forgot to promote it, so thank you to anyone reading for your ongoing support! 

For 24 twists you will need…

2 tbsp caster sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Flour - to dust
1 packet of all-butter puff pastry
200g sweet mincemeat
1 egg yolk - beaten
Icing sugar to serve

You will need to...

- Preheat your oven to 200C.

- Mix together the sugar, lemon zest and cinnamon in a small bowl.

- Roll out the puff pastry on a floured surface until it is the thickness of a £1 coin. Cut the pastry in half widthways. Spread the mincemeat over one half and place the other ontop, pressing/rolling together firmly.

- Trim the edges to create a neat rectangle, then brush the top with the egg yolk. Sprinkle over the lemony, cinammony sugar. Cut the pastry into 12 strips lengthways, then cut all across the middle to create 24 straws in total. 

- Twist each strip a couple of times and place on a lined baking tray - leaving plenty of room for expansion.

 - Bake at 200C until golden brown, puffed up and crisp - this could take anywhere between 15-30 minutes.

- Serve with a generous dusting of icing sugar. 

Enjoy! C x

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Peas, Watercress & Brown Shrimp on Toast

This is an adaptation of a Lindsey Bareham recipe that I tore out of a magazine a couple of years ago, and quickly became a favourite simple-yet-polished lunch in our household. As well as being relatively healthy and simple, with only a handful of ingredients needed, the blitzed watercress and pea mixture is really bright and fresh, and looks great on the plate. Despite being a good lunch dish, this would also work well in smaller quantities as a starter, or add more of everything to make into a light supper. If you can't find brown shrimps (Waitrose usually have a good supply) feel free to substitute them with prawns or crayfish. Although this is really quick to throw together it's worth noting that a good food processor or hand blender is essential to blitz your greens!

For two generous lunches you will need…

100g peas (fresh or frozen)
1 large handful of watercress
1 tsp Dijon mustard
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp cider vinegar
Salt & pepper

Knob of butter for the toast
2 slices of good sourdough bread
50-100g brown shrimps
Lemon to serve

You will need to…

- Cook the peas in boiling water, then drain and add to your food processor along with the watercress, mustard, olive oil and cider vinegar.
- Blitz until it becomes a thick herby sauce and season to taste. You might want to adjust the vinegar/oil balance too - I like it quite tangy.
- Toast your sourdough slices and butter generously.
- Spread with a thick layer of green paste and top with the shrimp. Serve with a wedge of lemon.

Enjoy! C x