Warm Mushroom, Spinach & Tuscan Cabbage Salad

For those of you who follow this blog, please accept my apologies for not having posted a recipe for so long! It has been a tough year, and I am finally getting at least some of my motivation and energy back, but oh so slowly!  Anyway, enough rambling, todays recipe is one I made, with the ‘left overs’ in the fridge, just before my husband and I went away a recently! It was delicious, and he said, ‘quick, write down what you did’ so you can repeat it, which is also why I can remember what to publish today!

Ingredients:

1 brown onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely crushed with sea salt
1 lemon – juice only
1 tbsp butter (I used Nuttelex)
1 tbsp olive oil
6-8 medium sized mushrooms, roughly chopped
4-6 spinach leaves and stalks, roughly chopped
3-4 stalks and leaves of tuscan cabbage, roughly chopped
2 eggs
1 tbsp cottage cheese
Black pepper
1/4 cup of roughly chopped walnuts, browned in the pan first

Method:

Sautee the onions and garlic, then add the mushrooms in the heated butter and oil; after a few minutes, add the stalks of the spinach and cabbage, then add the leaves and lemon juice. Finally, mix the two eggs with the cottage cheese and cook through quickly, adding black pepper, and if necessary, extra sea salt to taste. Serve topped with the browned walnuts on top.

For vegans, leave out the butter, eggs and cottage cheese; it tastes great without them as well.

This would also a great side dish to meat, or served with other vegetarian dishes on a buffet or as an entree.

Posted in Entrees, Mains, Salads, Sugar free, Uncategorized, Vegetables, Vegetarian/Vegan | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Gluten free cheese and herb muffins

Ingredients:
(makes 12 large muffins)

 

7/8 cup brown rice flour
1  1/4 cup blanched almond meal
1/2 cup tapioca flour or arrowroot
1/3 cup potato starch
2  1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon white pepper
1/8 teaspoon smokey paprika
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 cup chopped fresh finely chopped Italian parsley, or 2 tablespoons dried
1  1/4 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup canola or grape seed oil
2 large eggs

Method:
Preheat the oven to 190° C (375° F)and prepare a muffin tray; you can use paper cup inserts, grease them, or use a non stick muffin stay. In a large bowl, mix together the brown rice flour, almond flour, tapioca flour, potato starch, baking powder, salt, pepper, paprika and baking soda. Add in the cheese and herbs. Put the buttermilk or soured milk, oil and eggs into a small bowl and beat lightly until well combined. Pour the liquid into the flour and stir until there are no lumps. Spoon the batter into the muffin tin, dividing it evenly between the cups, and bake until golden brown for 30 to 35 minutes. Allow the muffins to rest in the muffin tray for a few minutes before removing them, then place onto a wire rack to finish cooling. Serve warm or cold.

Notes: If you wish to use these as part of a selection of canapés, bake them in a muffin tray for mini sized muffins. Also, if you want to make these as breakfast muffins, and eat meat, add diced bacon, pre cooked in a frypan with a dash of balsamic vinegar for added flavour.

Posted in Canapes, Gluten Free, Sugar free, Uncategorized, Vegetarian/Vegan | Tagged

Duck breasts with plum sauce

It has been a long time since I posted anything here… so for anyone following me, my apologies! Of course, that does not mean I have been starving myself, or stopped being interested in food and recipes either! But, and food is a great distraction from grief, and I find it healing. Hence, I am back, at least for today, and as it is almost Christmas, and I prefer duck to turkey, here is one of my favourite recipes.

Ingredients:

4 duck breasts, with skin on
1/2 tsp five-spice powder
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp speculaas

Ingredients for sauce:

1 tbsp virgin olive oil
1 tsp grated ginger
8-10 plums, halved and stoned
2 tbsp honey
1/2 tsp palm sugar
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 cinnamon stick
2 star anise
2 tbsp lime juice
zest of 1 lime

Method:

For the sauce, heat oil and fry ginger for a minute, add plums and remaining ingredients. Cook for 5 minutes or until plums have softened (but not until they are mushy and have lost their shape), stirring occasionally. Remove the skins of plums (if you prefer them that way) and keep warm. Add a splash of balsamic vinegar just before serving.

Score the skins of the duck breasts and season with the spices. Fry, skin side down over high heat for about 1 minute, then cook on low for 8-10 minutes depending on the size of the breasts. Our and cook another 5 minutes, then rest for 5 minutes. Slice, serve with the plum sauce and a rocket and baby spinach salad.

Ps. The sauce is also lovely with pork.

Posted in Asian style, Christmas, Entrees, Mains, Sauces | Tagged , ,

Baked Salmon

Last night, I made a delicious baked salmon meal, no recipe, no idea if it would work, simply using ingredients I had in the fridge, apart from the fish which we bought especially for the meal! I’ll see if I can remember what I did… it was basic, quick and easy to prepare and really delicious!

Ingredients (for 4):

4 -6 skinned, boned salmon steaks
1 onion, finely diced
1 red chilli, seeded and finely diced
3 garlic, finely diced
olive oil
4-6 large tomatoes, diced, or 1 tin of peeled diced tomatoes
6-8 large spinach leaves, chopped
Sea salt and cracked pepper to taste
Sweet potatoes cut into pieces and tossed in extra oil and flavoured with salt and pepper, to roast

Method:

Preheat the oven to high. Prepare the sweet potatoes and place on a tray. Add the seafood steaks to a baking dish, sprinkle with sea salt and pepper, and cover with a lid or foil. Add both to the oven when it is hot enough. Cook the onion, garlic and chilli in a large frypan with the oil, add the tomatoes and cook well. Add the spinach and cook through. Add seasoning to taste. Serve this with the seafood and roast potatoes, with some hot crusty bread or steamed rice.

Posted in Gluten Free, Mains, Seafood, Sugar free | Tagged , ,

Carrot & Banana cake (Sugar and Gluten free)

Ingredients:

2 very ripe bananas, mashed
12 fresh seeded dates, diced
1/2 cup coconut oil
3 large organic eggs
1 cup GF flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 sp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp cardamom or mixed spice
4 carrots, grated
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup roughly chopped roasted hazelnuts or walnuts
1/2 cup raisins

Method:

Pre heat over to 180C and prepare 10-20cm round cake tin. Mix bananas, dates and oil together, rising well, add eggs one at a time mixing well. Add flour, spices and baking powder and fold through without over beating. Add carrots, raising and coconut. Pour into cake tin and bake until knife comes out clean, approximately 40-50 minutes. Cool in tin.

If you want a topping on it, beat cream cheese with a little honey and lime juice and speed over the top then cover with more chopped nuts (use the same ones you used in the cake).

Posted in Cakes, Gluten Free, Healthy, Sugar free, Uncategorized | Tagged , , ,

Apple charlotte

Ingredients:

(this fills an 18 cm charlotte mould, 8 servings)

250 g ladyfinger biscuits (I use bought ones, and they work perfectly well)
1 kg golden delicious or grannysmith apples
70 g butter
150 ml full cream milk
50 ml brandy or cognac
50 g sugar
zest of 1 lemon
150 g apricot jam
1 level tsp ground cinnamon
1 pinch vanilla powder

For brushing:
1 tbsp of apricot jam

Method:

Peel the apples then cut into quarters, remove the core then cut into slices, approx. 2-3 mm thick. Place 50 g of the butter in a large pan, melt gently, then add the apples. Add the brandy (or your favourite liqueur, such as cognac, cointreau, or any liqueur you like), the ground cinnamon, sugar and the vanilla powder (or essence if you don’t have powder). Then add the grated lemon zest. Cook on a low flame until the apples are mushy.

While the apples are cooking, take your charlotte mould, grease with butter, then line the sides and bottom with parchment paper. Now trim the ladyfingers so they fit into the mould about 3-4 cm below the rim. Quickly dip in milk and arrange them against the sides of the mould, with the rounded end down and the sugared side facing out. Reserve the trimmed scraps and cake crumbs for the bottom layer. Be careful not to soak the ladyfingers to the point of being soggy.

When the apples have softened, add the apricot jam, stir well, then pour the mixture into the mould that is completely lined with ladyfingers. Take the remaining ladyfingers and crumble on top. Finally, pour the remaining 20 g of melted butter all over the top… and bake in a preheated oven at 180°C (350°F ) for about 35-40 minutes.

Allow it to cool slightly in the mould then turn it out onto a serving plate; remove the mould, peel off the parchment paper and brush with the strained apricot jam, for a glossy finish. Serve warm with fresh cream, custard or Ice cream, or ALL THREE!! Dust with icing sugar mixed with cinnamon.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , ,

Caramelised Pears

Ingredients

4-6 large pears
3 tbs unsalted butter
80 gm brown sugar
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1 pinch of mixed spice
2-3 tbs Grand Marnier (depends on how thin you want the juice)

Method:

Peel pears and slice into thick wedges. Heat butter in a frying pan and add pears, sugar and spices. Rain cheat stirring until sugar dissolves, then cook for 5-7 minutes (you may need to stir often), until caramelised. Remove from heat and add Grand Marnier. Serve warm with pan juices and thick cream.

Posted in Desserts | Tagged ,