Chilli, tamarind and parmesan courgetti

Posted in: LF, S, SF, Uncategorized, V, WF

Over the decades I’ve toyed with various iterations of my Go To comfort food. I find this  50/50 spaghetti – courgette split not only fills me up, it adds a clean crunchiness to the sometimes heavy pasta only version. For the record, a 70-80g pasta portion (as Italians take it, I’m told) appears to have none of the usual bloat infamy I’m prone to. If still unconvinced, though, there’s zero taste compromise with 100% courgetti; I do both. Left-overs as a salad the next day are also delicious.

Chilli, tamarind and feta courgetti

Feeds 2

INGREDIENTS

1 courgette, grated or spiralled
140g spaghetti
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp sun dried tomatoes, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 dsp tamarind paste – I like the big tubs from Indian supermarkets
1 tsp dried crushed chillies
Feta, cheddar cheese or parmesan to taste.

Optional:

1 dsp sun dried tomato paste (or bought) – I do without if I don’t have in the fridge.
1/2 tsp turmeric – I add where I can due to its incredible health benefits.

METHOD

Prep the ingredients. Grate the courgette and cheese; chop the garlic and sun dried tomatoes.

Set the frying pan over a medium to low heat and add the oil. Put the spaghetti to boil – not the courgette!

Add the remaining ingredients (apart from the cheese) to the frying pan in the order listed above, cooking gently until they warm through and the garlic turns translucent. Be very careful not to burn the garlic or pesto (if using) here.

Remove from the heat and fold in the pasta, courgetti and half of the cheese. Transfer to heated bowls or plates and top with the rest of the cheese.

For me, this is comfort food absolute, hot or cold.

Pitt Cue Co chipotle ketchup

Posted in: DF, LF, S, SF, Uncategorized, V, WF

I’m not a really a ketchup eater, so the fact I went to the lengths of making this recipe, and am now blogging it, I think testifies to the flavour. With smokey chilli and tangy apple and tamarind, this straddles between a sophisticated Tommy K and HP. There are various incarnations on the web, chipotle peppers generally causing some sourcing issues; this is mine.

Pitt Cue Co chipotle ketchup

INGREDIENTS

1kg ripe tomatoes, chopped
1 cooking apple, cored and chopped
2 red peppers, chopped
2 small red onions or 1 large, sliced
3 tsp smoked paprika
4 tsp chipotle – if you can’t get this, treble the paprika.
1 tsp turmeric (because I add it to everything for gut health)
1 tsp sea salt
3 tsp tamarind (I’m following HP’s lead on this)
250ml cider vinegar
1 tbsp agave or 200g muscovado sugar

METHOD

Put all ingredients except the agave into a pan, bring to the boil and then simmer for 2 hours.

Remove from the heat, chill and whizz with a stick blender till smooth.

Return to the heat, add agave and simmer for a further 30 mins or until thickened slightly. If, like me, you’ve swapped sugar for agave, the sauce will remain runnier. There’s no compromise to flavour.

Decant into sterilised jars and store in the fridge for up to two weeks, according to Pitt Cue Co. I confess I’ve kept mine a lot longer and it tastes just as good… Sorry, I’m lazy and refuse to do smaller batches.

I love this with Mum Garcia’s Netherton Farm Wild Boar sausages and sourdough or Courgette fritters, bacon and avocado. But with summer picnics and BBQ’s on their way *frantically touches wood*, I reckon this is a fridge staple worth having to hand.

 

Spring lamb with apricots & chilli

Posted in: DF, S, SF, WF

Happy Easter! Here’s something savoury to wash down all your chocolate eggs. After much tweaking, I think this tagine has a perfect balance of agrodolce: Tangy, clean lime, coriander and tamarind working wonders against the sweet, sticky apricots and meaty lamb. Don’t be put off by the mega ingredients list, it’s largely comprised of Storehouse items, and one pot recipes always get my vote for being faff free. It’s also a dinner party winner that tastes even better on day two.

Spring lamb with apricots & chilli

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS

500g lamb leg or shoulder, diced to 1 inch pieces, removing the fat.
1 tsp cumin, ground or seeds
2 tsp coriander seeds, ground
3 tsp mustard seeds
4 tsp garam masala from the Larder or shop bought

1 tbsp olive oil
3 red onions, peeled and chopped
2 inch piece ginger, peeled and chopped
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 chilli, finely chopped (seeds included)
3 tsp tamarind
1 bunch coriander (leaves and stalks), chopped

1 ltr chicken or veg stock (I like Marigold bouillon)
1 x 400g tin quality plum or chopped tomatoes
1/2 tsp turmeric
150g prunes, pitted
100g dried apricots
1 tbsp tamari, soy sauce or good pinch sea salt
2 limes, juice of

METHOD

Marinate the meat in the spices for 2 hrs, or ideally, overnight.

In a large, heavy based pan, heat olive oil till starts to smoke and add meat to brown. Set aside and fry onions and ginger until soft, aprox 5 mins. Add garlic, chilli, tamarind and coriander stalks (keep leaves aside for later) and fry for a further 5 mins.

Add stock, tomatoes and turmeric and bring to the boil. Follow with lamb and apricots, turn down the heat, cover and cook 30 mins.

Stir to unstick, add remaining ingredients and simmer gently with the lid off for 45 mins. Test for seasoning (you want a balance of sweet, salt and tang) and serve.

Best with yellow split peas, polenta mash or brown rice, a dollop of Labneh (from the Larder) and fresh coriander. Bulgar wheat with a drizzle of Lemon oil is a safe bet if the others float your boat.

Tip: It’s important to add turmeric later in the cooking process so as not to burn off its health benefits, of which there are multitudes!

For reasons this is a recipe your insides will love as much as your tastebuds, check out Seasonal Seducer Lamb.

Garam masala & tamarind chicken

Posted in: DF, S, Uncategorized, WF

Sweet and spicy garam masala and chilli with tangy tamarind do something magical with chicken. It takes a modicum of willpower not to devour the whole dish straight from the pan. Perfect in salads and soups, I almost always have a Tupperware of this in the fridge. Don’t be put off by the anchovies; other than bringing a greater depth of flavor and meatiness, you’d never know they’re there.

Garam masala chicken

Feeds 2. Cooking time: less than 30 mins.

 

Ingredients

2 chicken breasts
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tsp garam masala
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp crushed chillies
2 anchovies, chopped
3 tsp tamarind
3 sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
1 dsp tomato puree
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tin plum tomatoes, optional

Method

Coat the chicken in the ingredients, bar the olive oil and plum tomatoes, and set aside, ideally overnight. You can also cook straight away (I often do), but the flavour’s better if you’re able to leave to marinate.

Heat the olive oil in a pan and fry the chicken breasts until browned. About 4 mins. on the first side and 2 on the reverse.

It’s at this point that you add, or not, the tinned tomatoes. I alternate between the two, depending if I want more sauce to have with some rice, or if I’m cooking chicken to go straight to the fridge for a Toolkit lunch.

Turn down to a relatively low heat, cover and cook for 15 mins, or until the chicken is still tender, yet cooked through. If you’ve gone for the plum tomato option, take the lid off 5 mins before the end so that some of the liquid evaporates and your sauce thickens.

Eat straight away with crusty bread, rice or mash. Or chopped into a salad.

Garam masala chicken & toasted seed salad

With either dish, make sure you keep some chicken aside in the fridge for salads, wraps, stir-fries or soups.

Tip: Drop the tinned tomatoes and cook your Garam masala chicken on the BBQ in the summer. Tandoor chicken. Ish.

PP (150g): Kcal: 360, Pr: 50.5g, Carb: 9.3g, OWS: 1.6g, Fat: 13.6g, Sat Fat: 2.3g, Salt: 0.7g

P/1/2 breast: Kcal: 180, Pr: 25.3g, Carb: 4.6g, OWS: 0.8g, Fat: 6.8g, Sat Fat: 1.1g, Salt: 0.4g