Goan Fish Curry

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Goan Fish Curry

If you have read my blog before you will be well aware that my hubby and I love fish and seafood. However, my other half always maintains that fish has no place being in a curry. When he saw me making this dish the other day he, exclaimed ‘oh thats risky’, indicating that there was a chance that he wasn’t going to enjoy the dish!

I took the recipe from  Lean in 15 by Joe Wicks ; a book full of healthy recipes and fitness ideas, which you can complete in just 15 minutes. I’ve tried out several recipes already but this is definitely one of my favourites. The gentle warmth from the chilli and spices combined with the meaty fish and dash of lime really works and it is an excellent alternative to an Indian Takeaway. Despite his earlier misgivings, my hubby declared that if this dish was available at his local Curry House he would be ordering it every time…high praise indeed!

Goan Fish Curry

Prep 15 mins

Serves 2

Ingredients

3 cloves garlic, chopped
3cm ginger, chopped
1 green chilli, chopped – with seeds if you like it hot, although I removed them in my version and the curry was just right for me and my hubby who likes spicy food.
2 chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp coconut oil or 6-8 squirts or coconut oil spray
1 red onion, diced
1 tbsp garam masala
1 tbsp ground cumin
1 x 400ml tin of full-fat coconut milk
500g haddock fillet, skinned and cut into large chunks (or use 300g and add 8-10 king prawns, as I did in this recipe)
Juice of 1 lime
½ bunch of coriander leaves chopped

Method

  1. In a food processor (I used my mini processor) add the the garlic, ginger, chilli and tomatoes and blitz until smooth, then leave to one side.
  2. Spray coconut oil in the pan and fry the onion under a medium heat for 2 minutes, stir throughout.
  3. Add in the garam masala and cumin and then continue to stir as for 30 seconds.
  4. Add the ingredients you blended earlier and bring to the boil before pouring in the coconut milk. Once added, make sure that the sauce is brought to the boil again. At this stage, I turned off the heat and left the sauce on the hob as I wasn’t ready to cook the fish just yet, but if you are ready, you can simply proceed with the next stage of the recipe.
  5. Add the haddock pieces and the prawns to the curry, and simmer gently. Cook the fish for about 3 minutes, or until it is cooked through.
  6. Season and stir in the lime juice and then taste to ensure you are happy with the flavours and add more lime or seasoning as required.
  7. Serve with a sprinkling of coriander and a wedge of lime.
  8. This recipe freezes well, although I would probably freeze the sauce in batches and add the fish or even chicken when needed.
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Ricotta fritters with tomato sauce & courgette salad

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Ricotta fritters with tomato sauce & courgette salad

This tasty dish went down a treat when my son’s vegetarian girlfriend came to stay and it was also enjoyed by the rest of my carnivorous family. The recipe is taken from Jamie Oliver’s 15 Minute Meals and I would definitely cook it again.  The ricotta fritters were light and delicate and worked well when combined with the spicy tomato sauce and courgette salad. It is relatively easy to make as long as you do not disturb the fritters too much whilst they are cooking. A lovely little supper dish for a summers evening, although I dare say it would be well received whatever the time of year it is.

Ricotta fritters with tomato sauce and courgette salad

Prep 15 mins – although took me nearly 25mins to prep and cook

Serves 4

Ingredients

For the sauce

  • 25 g dried porcini mushrooms
  • 4 anchovy fillets
  • 1 dried red chilli
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 700g passata
  • 8 black olives (stone in)
  • ½ a bunch of fresh basil

For the fritters

  • 1 large free-range egg
  • 400 g ricotta cheese
  • 1 whole nutmeg for grating
  • 1 lemon
  • 40 g Parmesan cheese
  • 1 heaped tablespoon plain flour
  • olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar

For the salad

  • 400 g firm green or yellow baby courgettes
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 fresh red chilli
  • ½ a bunch of fresh mint
  • 1 lemon

Method

1. Cover the porcini with boiling water and leave to soak.
2. In a bow,  mix the ricotta with egg, finely grated 1/4 of nutmeg, lemon zest, parmesan and flour and then beat together.
3.Add a tablespoon of olive oil to a frying pan and then dollop 8 tablespoons of the mixture in to the pan. Turn carefully with a spatula when the bottom is golden and as I mentioned previously try not to move the fritters around too much.
4. Add chilli,  anchovies and garlic to a frying pan with a splash of olive oil. Then add passata and finely chopped porcini with half the soaking water. Season and bring to the boil.
5. Add stoned squashed olives (squashing helps remove the stone) and then add the chopped basil leaves, but don’t forget to keep some to use as garnish later.
6. Using a food processor grate the courgette. Add to a bowl with seasoning, lemon juice and olive oil. Then add finely chopped chilli and some mint from the top half of the bunch. Mix the salad together gently with your hands.

7. Place the fritters in the sauce in a serving dish or if you wish to be more rustic in the pan the sauce was cooked in. Garnish with the rest of the basil leaves, some balsamic and a few lemon wedges on the side.

Watercress Soup

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Watercress Soup

 

This delicious soup has always been a winner in our household, whether it is served as an Amuse-bouche, a simple starter or as a hearty bowl for lunch or supper. The method of making this soup is easy as can be and is based on a recipe for lettuce soup, which I found in a Sainsbury’s Easy Meals For One & Two by Anne Page-Wood many moons ago. In fact I still use up old ends of lettuces and greens to make a soup using this recipe when I’m clearing out the fridge. Just substitute the watercress with any greens you have in store.

Watercress Soup

Prep time 50mins – 1 hr (including cooking)

Serves 4 hearty bowls plus a little extra

Ingredients

1 large onion

5 medium potatoes

2oz Butter

2 bags Watercress (85 grams or approx 3oz per bag)

1 litre of Chicken Stock

Ground  Nutmeg

Lemon or lime juice

Seasoning

Method

  1. Peel and chop onion and then peel and cube potatoes into small squares.
  2. Melt the butter in a large casserole pot on top of the hob and then add the onion and potatoes. Move the potatoes and onions around for a moment until they are coated in the butter.
  3. Add the watercress to the pot with a little seasoning and then put the lid on top. Keep on a low light for 5-10 mins until the watercress is wilted.
  4. When the watercress is wilted give the ingredients a stir and then add the Chicken Stock. Put the lid back on and leave to simmer slowly until the potatoes are soft, which will take up to  25-30 mins.
  5. When the potatoes are cooked through, either leave the soup to cool slightly and then pour in a blender, or use a hand blender directly in the pan to ensure any lumps of vegetables are completely pureed.
  6. Once the soup is blended add a teaspoon of ground nutmeg and squeeze in the Juice of half a lemon. Stir and then taste for seasoning. Add salt and pepper (I prefer white pepper for this recipe) as required and taste again. If you wish to add more nutmeg and lemon juice  then do this a little at a time until you feel as though the flavour of the watercress has been enhanced to the required taste.

This soup will last up to a couple of days in the fridge and also freezes well.

 

 

Crispy Polenta Chicken Caesar Salad

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Crispy Polenta Chicken Caesar Salad

This hearty salad from Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals Cookbook is suitable as a main meal at lunchtime or supper and is probably one of the best caesar salads I have ever tasted. Jamie includes jarred red peppers in his recipe and ciabatta, but as I didn’t have those to hand at the time, I had to make do with what I had in the cupboard. This photograph post on my instagram account @tostadacooking has received a good number of ‘likes’ and I agree with my fellow food bloggers opinion, in that, if something looks this good then it probably tastes good. Trust me and try it for yourself!

Crispy Polenta Chicken Caesar Salad

Prep 20 mins

Serves 4

Chicken

8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs (Jamie uses 2 x chicken breasts)

1/2 tsp sweet smoked paprika

2 heaped tbsp polenta

olive oil

Salad

1 small petit pan

1 clove of garlic

2 red chicory

100g of bacon lardons (Jamie uses – 3 x Smoked pancetta slices)

3 Gem lettuces (Jamie uses – 2 x romaine lettuces)

10 cherry tomatoes

balsamic vinegar

1 punnet of cress

Dressing

1 clove of garlic

2 lemons

40g Parmesan cheese (plus extra to serve)

4 anchovy fillets

4v heaped tbsp of natural yoghurt

1 splash of Worcester sauce

1 tbsp red wine vinegar

1 tsp English mustard

1/2 bunch of fresh basil

Method

  1. Prepare the salad dressing by blitzing all the ingredients in a processor until smooth and then season to taste. It may be worth noting that it is best to crumble in the parmesan before you blitz.
  2. On a large sheet of greaseproof paper scatter seasoning, the paprika and polenta then place the chicken on the paper and ensure both side sides of the chicken are coated with the mixture.
  3. Fold over the greaseproof paper on top and bash with a rolling pin until approximately 1.5cm thick.
  4. In a frying pan heat a splash of olive oil and then place the chicken in the pan, turning every 3 or 4 minutes until golden brown and cooked through.
  5. Whilst the chicken is cooking, slice the petit pan lengthways, so that you have about 3-4 slices of bread. Brush both sides of the bread with olive oil and rub half a clove of garlic gently over one side of each slice. Place the bread slices on a heated griddle until charred with stripes (both sides).
  6. Once the bread is charred you can use the same pan to cook the lardons.
  7. Whilst the bacon and the chicken finish cooking prepare the salad by roughly slicing the lettuce and placing this on a large serving platter. Halve the cherry toms and also add to the platter.
  8. Remove the cooked chicken and slice into strips and arrange around the salad. Drain any fat from the chicken pan and then quickly toss the chicory in a splash of balsamic in the same pan. Add the chicory to the platter and then slice the petit pain slices into soldiers and add to the salad.  Drizzle the dressing on the salad, sprinkle the bacon bits over and then snip the cress onto the top.
  9. Finally use a potato peeler to shave over a little extra parmesan.
  10. Tuck in!

 

La Tasca, Jesús Pobre, Spain

La TascaI have visited this restaurant every summer for the last four years and it never fails to disappoint.  The food is always fresh and seasonal and everything, including the pasta is homemade. I have already mentioned La Tasca in a previous post, in which I attempted to recreate my favourite Ricotta and Spinach Tortellini with a butter and sage sauce, but its never quite the same as when you are sitting in this unique courtyard setting under the spanish sky.

This year we were lucky enough to book a table on a Tuesday evening, which is music night and we were entertained by a traditional gypsy family performing flamenco dancing and singing. The atmosphere was extremely magical and special and is something I will remember for many years to come.

To start, my husband and I shared a Burrata, which for those who don’t know is a delicious buffalo mozzarella, from Napoli in Southern Italy. This was served with toasted bread, topped with fresh spanish tomatoes and drizzled in basil oil. My mouth is watering as I write, as it is such a delight to eat.

The pasta at La Tasca is made daily and their speciality is the ravioli, with a different choice of fillings each day. On this particular evening I could have had ravioli with pear and gorgonzola, salmon and lemon cream, meat, or luckily for me, on this particular evening, the spinach and ricotta. However, the problem of which pasta to choose does not end there, you then have to choose a sauce to accompany the dish. The waiting staff are always on hand to recommend which sauces suit each pasta dish, but it really is up to individual preference. I was torn between Burro e Salvia ( melted butter and crispy sage leaves), Nata y Nueces (cream, walnut pieces and a touch of pepper) or their delicious Nata y Parmigiano (cream and melted parmesan cheese). After a good deal of deliberation I opted for the rather indulgent parmesan cream sauce to accompany my spinach and ricotta ravioli and it did not disappoint. Hurrah for pasta!

To finish, my husband enjoyed a Panna Cotta with berry jam and I opted for a second calorific, but to die for option, of a Crepe Suzette, which was heavenly.  Another fantastic evening at this atmospheric,  warm and friendly venue. La Tasca, I miss you already, but I know I will return…adios amigo!

For more information check out TripAdivsor

Mackerel Salad with Beetroot and Horseradish Cream

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Mackerel Salad with Beetroot and Horseradish Cream

 Midweek I am always in a rush to find something quick and easy to make for supper and a simple salad or snack is usually the answer. We all know that fish and particularly oily fish is good for us, so last week I plumped for peppered mackerel. The recipe for this chosen dish is simply based on a salad I tasted in a local cafe last year. I recall at the time I was impressed with the combinations of flavours and pleased with myself that I had made such a good choice for lunch.

Mackerel has quite an intense flavour with creamy meat, so I knew I needed something sharp and possibly sweet to cut through the oil and compliment the robustness of the fish. With this in mind I selected beetroot as an accompaniment and just to add an extra kick, I combined horseradish and Creme Fraiche to create a cream dressing for the salad. The crunchy and creamy textures combined with the sweetness of the beetroot and the heat from the Horseradish work extremely well together. This results in a salad which is not only scrumptious, but packed with healthy produce and perfect for a mid-week supper. Try it and I bet it will put a spring in your step!


Mackerel with Beetroot and Horseradish Cream

Prep Time 15 mins

Serves 2

Ingredients

10-12 Small New Potatoes

2 Peppered Mackerel Fillets

4 Beetroot

Mixed leaves

1 Red Pepper

10-12 Cherry Tomatoes

2 Dessert Spoons of Creme Fraiche

2 Tsps of Horseradish (add more if you like it hot)

Method

1. Boil the kettle first as this saves time. Thanks must go to Jamie Oliver for this helpful tip.

2. Slice the new potatoes in half (lengthways) and put in a pan with the boiling water and cook for about 15 minutes until soft. Check after 10mins.

3. Place the mixed leaves in the bowls and slice the tomatoes in half and add to the leaves. Finally add sliced pepper to the salad.

4. Remove the mackerel from its skin and remove any rogue bones you can see or feel. Then roughly tear the mackerel into bite sized pieces and scatter over the salad.

5. Whilst you are waiting for the potatoes to soften mix the creme fraiche with the horseradish and leave to one side. Taste to check you have got the balance right and adjust accordingly.

6. Once the potatoes are ready, drain and if time allows cool a little and then scatter amongst the mackerel.

7. Finally dollop small spoonfuls of Horseradish cream over the salad and serve.

Pork Pies with Chilli

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Pork Pies with Chilli

During a recent trip to the North of England, my husband and I were fortunate enough to spend a very pleasant day with my in-laws, meandering through the streets of York. It has been many years since my last visit, but we were not disappointed. The famous Shambles provided a fantastic place to stroll and we came across so many interesting shops and eateries. Henshelwoods Delecatessen was a particular treat and I couldn’t resist having a mooch around the shop. Customers were queuing out of the door to order lunch from the deli counter and there must have been over 80 different varieties of cheese on display. I came away with Pop Notch Fancy Salty Caramel Popcorn, Truede Mixed Flavour Turkish Delight and a jar of Rosebud Preserves Wild Rowan Jelly which I plan to use with a pigeon breast recipe. Feeling pleased with my purchases I was greeted by a very excited husband as I exited the shop, because lo and behold he had found a delightful looking hostelry named Pivni. The selection of ales available was huge, but I couldn’t resist opting for a beer from my old childhood stomping ground, so I plumped for a glass of Pennine Pale Ale brewed by the Allendale Brewery in Northumberland. The ale may have been from the wrong end of the Pennines from where I grew up, but boy was it good. It was probably one of the smoothest pale ales I have tasted for many years and the fruity citrus overtones were delicious. By now we were having an attack of the munchies,  so we decided to sample The Pivni Chilli Pork Pie. The pie certainly delivered and it packed a punch with the hint of chilli in the middle, and the crumbly hot water pastry was fantastic. A chilli Pork Pie is a first for me, and so on my return home I was determined to master the art of making hot water pastry and secondly, to make a Pork Pie with a chilli filling.

I didn’t have a recipe but my mother-in-law kindly gave me her well worn Home Recipes Book for Be-Ro flour which contained a family favourite recipe for Pork Pies. I also had a quick look on the internet and found various recipes and methods to make Pork Pies, but I took the lead from the following two recipes.  The Chilli Fennel Seed Pork Pie on Joseph Piper website appealed to me as it did not require the addition of jelly to be poured into the pie after cooking. Mr Vikkis Chilli Jam Pork Pies also caught my eye as I really wanted to ensure the pies had a chilli centre. My final recipe for the pies is therefore based on the pastry recipe from Joseph Piper and the filling from ideas gleaned from Mr Vikki’s recipe. The result was extremely pleasing and received my husbands royal approval. However, as we all know Pork Pies are highly calorific, but a little bit of ‘naughty but nice‘ doesn’t hurt once in a while. Just be sure you have some friends round to eat them with you, with a cold beer or cider on hand, because they are at their best when they are still a little warm, crumbly and extremely moreish.


Pork Pies with Chilli

Prep 30 mins

Cooking 45 mins (Gas mark 6 for 10 mins and then gas mark 4 for 35mins)

(makes 9 – 3″ x 1″depth pies)

Equipment – Muffin Tin, greaseproof paper and food processor

Ingredients

For the Pastry

75g (2.6oz) Unsalted Butter

75g Lard

300g (10.5oz) Plain Flour

135ml of water

1/4 tsp of salt

pinch of cayenne

For the Filling

400g (14.1 oz)  Minced Pork (lean)

150g (5.2oz) smoked lardons or baon

1/2 tsp of cayenne pepper

salt to taste

Chilli jam (1 x tsp per pie) in my recipe I used Veeraswamy Lime Chilli Chutney from Waitrose as I couldn’t find any Chilli jam at the time.

Method

Tip – use a food processor to make the pastry and mix the filling

1. Grease a Muffin tin and just to be sure the pies don not stick line each ring with greaseproof paper.

2. Put the water on to boil and add to it the lard.

3. Mix the flour, cayenne and butter in the food processor. Turn on until the mixture is a consistency of fine bread crumbs.

4. Once the lard has melted turn the heat off under the water and then slowly pour the liquid into the processor and mix with the flour. Do this a little at a time and check that the pastry does not get too sloppy. (I had a little water left over when I made my pies).

5. Once the pastry has come together, remove from the processor and knead gently on a floured surface for just a few seconds and then place in a bowl to once side to rest and to allow th pastry to come to room temperature.

6. Mix the pork mince the lardons, cayenne pepper and seasoning in the food processor and set to one side.

7. Take 2/3 of the pastry and roll out thinly and then cut out approximately 5″ circles from the pastry. Place each circle in a muffin slot in the tin, ensuring that not air is trapped and the pastry over hangs the top edge. If you have to re-roll the pastry to ensure you have enough circles only re-roll the pastry once as it will become too dry and crack.

8. Once the pastry is in position in the muffin tin, spoon a dessert spoon of pork filling into each pie (this should fill the pie up to no more than half way)

9. Add a small teaspoon of Chilli Jam on top of the pork in each pie case, then fill to the top with the rest of the pork filling.

10. Roll the final 1/3 of the pastry and cut out a lid for each pie (make sure the lid is a little wider than the actual width of the pie) and don’t forget to make a couple of slits or a hole in the pastry lid to let the steam out whilst cooking.

11. Brush a little drop of water round the top of the pastry cases and then place on the lid. Squeeze the lid round the edge and decorate by crimping. I simply used a back of a fork.

12. Brush the pies with egg wash before placing them in the oven, 10 mins at gas mark 6 and then turn down to gas mark 4 for 35 minutes.

Spring Tasting at Trencherman’s of Dorset April 2015

imageI’ve been visiting Trencherman’s of Dorset for many years and have always come away with something delicious to eat or cook. Their wine selection is also an important part of their business and they are one of the larger independent wine merchants in the area. They buy the majority of the wines direct from small producers, so their wines are very competitive.

So when the opportunity arose to attend one of their famous Tasting Events my husband and I couldn’t resist popping along with a couple of friends. These events are always a sociable occasion and Steve Goodden, Ethne Waltham and the team are always on hand to welcome you and offer advice on anything, from stocking wine cellars to planning parties.

The evening didn’t disappoint, as we were delighted to discover a delicious array of food and wine to tickle our taste buds. We worked our way through the food tasting area, and tasted sumptuous Spanish Gordal Green Olives flavoured with extra virgin olive oil, fleur de sel and freshly ground pepper. All I needed was a glass of Rosé, and I could really begin to imagine myself sitting under the Mediterranean sunshine….bliss! We then moved on to try delicious Normandy Ham, Salted Bacalao mixed with potato, garlic, oil and cream served as a canapé on toast and a surprisingly light and fluffy Spanish Pork Scratching. We also discovered a new Toast for Cheese biscuit produced by the The Fine Cheese Company in Bath. This toast biscuit was flavoured with apricots, pistachios and sunflower seeds and was absolute heaven when accompanied with delicious melting Brie.

Equally the wine selection did not disappoint. Vin Mousseux Pierre de Chanvigné Rosé Brut Excellence, was not only wonderfully fragrant, dry and crisp but it is a fine mousse at a great price. We shall definitely be ordering a case for the summer evenings.

The wine selection was plentiful but my favourite white for price and taste was Château la Bastide Corbieres blanc. Favourite reds included the lovely smooth and rounded Passitivo di Puglia, the tremendous Beaujolais from Laurent Guillet which was packed with cherries and finally the Miguel Merino Rioja Reserve 2005. This wine is rich, complex and has a long finish; a wine to be savoured rather than quaffed!

A quick meander around the shop resulted in a small haul of goodies including Pigeon Breasts, Spanish Pork Scratchings, a packet of ‘Toast for Cheese’ and a large slab of Brie. My pal bought delicious duck breasts and some scrummy chocolate bites to have with coffee when she got home. My husband and I opted for a more indulgent repaste and opened a bottle of red on our arrival back at base to accompany the Brie and Toast I had purchased which was a fitting end to an extremely enjoyable evening.

Well done to all at Trencherman’s of Dorset

Next Event – Summer Wine Tasting, Saturday 4th & Sunday 5th July. Check their website for details. http://www.trenchermans.com

Confit of Duck with Oranges and Pomegranate Dressing

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Confit of Duck with Oranges and Pomegranate Dressing

This recipe was inspired by a starter dish I tasted at The Green Restaurant in Sherborne, Dorset. I didn’t really have a recipe I just based my idea on their design and flavour of the dish. However I did base the confit of duck on a recipe I found on the Gressingham Duck website

Confit of duck with oranges and pomegranate dressing (serves 6)

        Prep – 20 mins 

        Cooking 3h 30mins

        Gas mark 1/2, 125C, 105C (Fan)

        Ingredients

        4 Duck legs

        800g – 1kg Duck or Goose fat (or 4 x 200g jars)

        6 tbsp Coarse Rock Salt

        Few sprigs Rosemary & Thyme (or dried)

        1 garlic bulb, cloves separated, skins on and  flattened with a knife

        1 tsp of whole black peppercorns

        Zest of orange

       2 Bay Leaves

       Sauces

       1 pomegranate

       1 – 2 tsp of Redcurrant or Cranberry jelly

       Orange Sauce 

       1 Orange (squeezed)

       Drop of olive oil to taste

       1 tbsp runny honey

       salt and pepper to taste

       Decoration

       2 Medium sized oranges

       2 Ruby oranges

       Pea shoots or lambs lettuce leaves


       Method        

1. I suggest you start the confit the day before or at least 12 hours in advance of cooking.

2. In a baking tray/dish scatter a 1/4 of the salt in the base which is deep enough to hold 4 legs. the duck legs should be placed skin side down and then the rest of the salt, herbs and peppercorns can be added. Finally grate some orange zest over the duck legs.

3. Cover and place in the fridge until you are ready to cook.

4. (On the day)  Pre-heat your oven to the required temperature (Gas mark 1/2 etc)

5. In a large casserole dish or saucepan melt your duck or goose fat on a very low heat. Once the fat is melted place your duck legs into the fat ensuring the fat covers the duck legs and bring to a gentle simmer.

6. Place the lid on the casserole dish and put in the oven. Cook for 2 1/2 hours until tender. At the end of the cooking time the meat should be very tender, but test this with a skewer. If the skewer goes through the meat easily it is cooked if it doesn’t leave it in the oven for up to another 30 mins.

7. Whilst the duck is cooking prepare the oranges. Peel the Ruby and regular oranges using a sharp knife. Once the oranges are without their peel, slice the ruby oranges to create discs (see photo) and remove the orange segments from their skins. If you are unsure of this technique check out this YouTube clip How to segment an orange, by FineCooking.com. Once the oranges are prepared cover in a container and place in the fridge until required.

8. You can now prepare the pomegranate and orange dressings. For the pomegranate dressing remove all the seeds from one pomegranate and place in a sieve. Collect the just into a small pan and add a very small teaspoon of redcurrant jelly or cranberry sauce. Heat over a low light until bubbling and simmer until the sauce thickens slightly. This will produce no more than 1-2 tablespoons on dressing which I then pour into a plastic sauce bottle until later. You could leave in a cup at room temperature if you do not have a sauce bottle.

9. For the orange dressing squeeze the juice of one orange into  a pan and add a drop of olive oil and a squeeze of honey. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper and heat gently. Once the sauce thickens slightly pour into your second plastic sauce bottle or another cup and set aside until required.

10. When the meat is ready leave to cool for 10mins and then take the duck legs out of the fat.

11. Shred the duck legs into a container and store until you are ready to assemble your starter.

12. When you are ready to assemble your starter place a mould ring on the centre of your plate and fill the round with the shredded duck. Then place three orange segments and the ruby orange on the plate. Finally add the drops of both the pomegranate sauce and the orange sauce around the duck stack and top with pea shoots or some equivalent decoration.

Enjoy!

Sea Bass with Spring Greens and Champagne Cream Sauce

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Sea Bass with spring greens and Champagne cream sauce

This dish is based on Fred Forster’s recipe for Sea Bass and Champagne Sauce. Fred is Head Chef at the Boundary Restaurant in Shoreditch, London. The main tweak that I made was that I added brown shrimps. The preparation took time, but the cooking and plating of the food at the end was quite frenetic. However, the taste and approval from my guests made it extremely worthwhile.

Sea Bass with spring greens and Champagne cream sauce (serves 6)

Prep – 20 mins

Cooking – 30 mins

Ingredients

6 fillets of Sea Bass (although I used two small fillets per person as I couldn’t find very thick pieces)

Vegetable oil

Olive Oil

Salt and pepper

Vegetables

400g Asparagus tips (2 packets)

12 baby leeks

2.5kg New Potatoes

230g bag of Spinach

Sauce

1 shallot

250ml White Wine (dry)

300ml of double cream

1 pint of vegetable or fish stock

175ml  Champagne

90g pot of brown shrimps

50g jar of lumpfish caviar


Method

1. Clean and pat dry the Sea Bass and store in the fridge until ready to cook.

2. Clean and slice the new potatoes in half (lengthways) and place in slated water. Bring to the boil and cook for 15 mins or until soft. set aside until required.

3. Clean and prepare the asparagus tips and baby leeks and blanch for 3-4 minutes. Cool down immediately in iced water, remove and set aside until required.

4. Finely chop 1 x shallot and simmer in 250ml of white wine. Bubble and reduce the liquid to half and then add the double cream and reduce to half again, then strain the liquid through a sieve and cook for a further 10 minutes until thickened. Pour in the champagne and then set aside until you are ready to serve.

5. Put your vegetable or fish stock (I used a combination of both in my recipe – I bought the fish stock but made my own vegetable stock) on to simmer as this will be used to reheat your new potatoes and sling greens. Set a large wok or casserole dish on the hob ready to hold and reheat your vegetables.

6.. Place 1-2 frying pans on your hob and add a drop of vegetable and olive oil. When the oil is smoking, hold your fish skin side down in the oil to ensure it is crispy and browned (2-3mins). Flip the fish over for no more than a minute and then place the fish skin side down in the oven for 1 minute and then remove to rest. Ensure your pans are non stick or the skin will come off.

7. Place the required amount of new potatoes and spring greens in the wok and ladle over 1 -2 ladle spoons of stock and reheat. Add a knob of butter towards the end and taste for seasoning.

8. Reheat the sauce gently and add the brown shrimps. Taste and season as required.

9..At the same time heat a knob of butter in a pan, season and cook until wilted.

10. Ensure your serving plates/dishes are warm. Place the sea bass (skin side up)on a portion of spinach and then place the vegetables and potatoes around the fish. Drizzle the cream sauce over the vegetables and finally add a small spoonful of caviar on top of the fish.