Condiments, Preserving, Vegan

Chilli Jam

I love all things condiment: chutneys, relishes, pickles … spicy… mellow… sharp… sweet… salty… fruity… so many possibilities …

The cuisines of the world offer a myriad of flavours and combinations.

As such things go, this Chilli Jam, which I imagine originates from Mexico, is a simple affair. Like all condiments, you can have Chilli Jam as you like : with veggie-burgers, falafel, in salad sandwiches…or as I’ve done here… with vegan cheese and biscuits. Just too good.

This recipe is bound to be a variable feast, because it all depends on the heat of the chillies you use.  Towards the end of cooking, you can always add a pinch or two of chilli powder if it really isn’t hot enough for your taste…. or just use very hot chillies!

If you prefer a medium heat, then this recipe should work… and while you can always add more heat, you can’t take it away! Although chilli jam should definitely have a bit of a punch! 🙂 

Hope you enjoy!

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CHILLI JAM

Makes 2-3 small jars.

(quantity will vary slightly depending on setting levels)   Continue reading “Chilli Jam”

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Condiments, Mediterranean Dishes, Preserving, Salads, Vegan, Vegan Treats

Preserving Lemons and Limes. Moroccan Style.

There’s just a hint of spring in the air here in the UK, and my thoughts are already turning to fresh salads and light ‘spring-like’ food!

There are wonderful citrus fruit in the shops at the moment, and this recipe brings all the intensity of citrus flavours to the fore, while in the meantime gentling the sharpness that can sometimes be too overpowering.

Preserving lemons takes about a month, and then, stored in the refrigerator, they will last for months… which is great, because you don’t need much to bring a zing to any dish.

Typically preserved lemons are used in Moroccan dishes such as Tagine, and Couscous, but with just a little imagination I think there are many possibilities to introduce this gorgeous flavour : salads, pasta,  curries, marinades for tofu and tempeh, side dishes such as french beans, asparagus or carrots, as well as sauces, dressings and even desserts. As well as Mediterranean  dishes such as hummus or olive tapenade.

lemony lemonyness

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PRESERVED LEMONS

I litre jar : 8-10 lemons (and limes)

Cook’ notes: 

  • 1)The favoured choice of lemon for preserving is Meyer lemon, but other types of lemon work fine.  It’s important they’re unwaxed, as you will be eating the rind …. 
  • 2) I used Himalayan salt … which is the only salt I use in the kitchen these days.
  • The best jar to use is almost certainly a glass kilner jar with a good tight seal.  Don’t use metallic lids as they will react with the lemon juice.  

Ingredients:   Continue reading “Preserving Lemons and Limes. Moroccan Style.”

All About Beans, Breakfast, Condiments, Growing things, Preserving, Vegan

Jam…. Pickle… Passata…. it’s that time of year again ….

Izzy wizzy let’s get bizzy 🐝 ✨

Greetings from a busy kitchen 💐 💕

I’ve been singularly failing to keep my blog going lately…and that’s because I’ve been madly busy harvesting and storing, preserving and pickling some of my homegrown fruit and vegetables. So cooking dinner has been taking a bit of a back seat!  Baked potatoes all round 😏

Here’s a taster of what’s been happening in my household lately… raspberry jam, cucumber pickle, roasted tomato and garlic passata and an almond vegan cheese made in honour of my delicious Italian tomatoes…… and some of the beans are air-drying for the winter …..

So. Where to start?

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ROASTED TOMATO AND GARLIC PASSATA

Ingredients: Continue reading “Jam…. Pickle… Passata…. it’s that time of year again ….”

Condiments, Salads, Vegan

Thousand Island Dressing.

Thousand Island Dressing dates back to the beginning of the 20th century and was undoubtedly invented in the US. It’s now a global standard …with endless variations.

Here’s mine. Plant-based.  Naturally.

It’s a dressing that will work with a fresh green salad and stand up equally well to powerful flavours like a vegan BBQ’d mushroom and sweet pepper kebab or chilli bean burgers.

What’s not to like?

It has a surprising number of ingredients… and feel free to adjust quantities of each ingredient according to personal taste.

Moreover ….for extra pizzazz you can add even more 🙂

… maybe half-a-dozen crisp green (pitted) olives…

a small handful of pickled dill cucumbers….

… or a couple of red hot finger chillies…

… a big bunch of fresh herbs….

… or a couple of chopped spring onions …

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THOUSAND ISLAND DRESSING

makes about 250ml……

Ingredients:
Continue reading “Thousand Island Dressing.”

All About Beans, Burgers and Patties, Condiments, Mediterranean Dishes, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes, Vegan on a Shoestring

Patatas Bravas + Herbed Mushroom Bean Burgers + Vegan Aioli

Spanish flavours…  roasted potatoes in a rich garlicky tomato sauce served with vegan aioli.

Mushroom bean burgers infused with intensely fragrant dried herbs…oregano…rosemary…sage and thyme…and with a chilli hit….

A great combination packed with powerful flavours.

Perfectamente Deliciosa!

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patatas bravas + herbed mushroom bean burgers

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PATATAS BRAVAS + HERBED MUSHROOM BURGERS + VEGAN AIOLI

makes 6  – 70gm. burgers

more than ample for 2

Ingredients: Continue reading “Patatas Bravas + Herbed Mushroom Bean Burgers + Vegan Aioli”

Burgers and Patties, Condiments, Vegan, Vegan Ingredients, Vegan Main Dishes

Savoury Seacakes with Carrot and Parsnip chips, Peas in a Pea Sauce and Caper Mayo.

 

What we are doing to the oceans and its inhabitants is nothing short of criminal.

We are plundering the seas and leaving them empty and dying.  We are chucking our insane piles of rubbish into the ocean as though it was simply our own personal garbage bin.  We are destroying the balance of the extraordinary and complex eco-systems of the oceans, and thereby desecrating the planet as a whole.  We, as a race, are apparently unstoppable….and yet millions of people are working at turning this behaviour around.

I am truly in awe of, and grateful to,  all those on the front line trying to defend our seas: conservationists, cove monitors, sea-farers and fund-raisers….and many many more…

I am also glad to hear that the Taiji drive hunt season is officially over, until next September at least.

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Here is my small oceanic offering, my ‘food for peace’. In the light of all the brutality and destruction.

Savoury Seaweed cakes, with a few classic flavours: lemon, mustard, capers, horseradish and mayonnaise.  And also accompanied by just the faintest scent of sea air…….

Seacakes with peas in a pea sauce and carrot and parsnip chips + caper mayo!

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But first, a brief introduction to seaweed.

Clock-wise starting top left: Arame. Nori sheet. Wakame. Dulse.

Continue reading “Savoury Seacakes with Carrot and Parsnip chips, Peas in a Pea Sauce and Caper Mayo.”

Condiments, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes

Kulebjaka. Russian Cabbage Pie .

I know that in colder climes, the only vegetable that stands proud and unruffled in the midst of snow and frost, is the winter cabbage. Oh…and leeks …but that’s for another time… I know this because I have an allotment.

In the frosts and snow, there are the winter cabbages, looking a lot like triffids, impervious to the cold temperatures.

I can only imagine that in the snowier regions of Russia, cabbage fields abound.  Which is probably why Russian cookbooks provide so many fabulous and interesting cabbage dishes.

Despite the globalisation of food, and our desire to have varied diet, I have a soft spot for eating vegetables that are seasonal.  Flavoured with seasonal herbs. It feels right somehow.

This dish is there to warm you on the coldest and the snowiest of days.  Warming and comforting and inherently good.   I am in love with cabbage pie.

kulebjaka and garlic potatoes with sour cream

Cabbage, salt and lots of pepper, are, in my humble opinion, a match made in heaven.

Sautéed with onion, wrapped in a soft light bread dough, and, on this occasion, served with Russian-style, boiled, sautéed potatoes tossed in plenty of garlic and vegan-butteriness. And a dollop of vegan sour cream.

 A winter’s feast.

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KULEBJAKA

Russian Cabbage Pie, with Sautéed Garlic Potatoes and Vegan Sour Cream

Serves 6

Ingredients:   Continue reading “Kulebjaka. Russian Cabbage Pie .”

All About Beans, Bread, Burgers and Patties, Condiments, Salads, Vegan Main Dishes, Vegan Snacks

Echoes of Ancient Egypt. Broad Bean Patties with pitta bread, minted cucumber salad, pickled cucumbers and spinach. . . . Vegan . . .

broad bean patties + pitta + cucumber salad+ pickled cucumbers + spinach ribbons

Despite controversy, there seems to be reasonable certainty that falafel may well have originated in Egypt, and were made using Fava Beans. Fava Beans are a type of Broad Bean, and are grown in many countries.

In fact, I’ve just sown some at my allotment, as certain varieties over-winter happily, and beat the dreaded blackfly that make an appearance in June. ( But that’s another story).

Another random fact: according to Wikipedia: the word falafel originates from “The word Falāfil (Arabic: فلافل‎), which is the plural of Filfil (فلفل), meaning “pepper”.

Below is my recipe  for Broad Bean Patties, with lots of delicious ingredients and plenty of coarse ground black pepper.  They don’t need veganising, as they always have been, and always will be: vegan.

I love a mezze; so many different flavours and tastes to conjure with so I decided to accompany the patties with my very own homemade pitta bread (which puts all shop-bought pitta in the shade, believe me), a cucumber salad in a minted tahini yogurt dressing, finely chopped spinach, and sharp cucumber pickles.

A feast of greenness.

filled pitta bread

Unlike some versions of Fava Falafel, I have used frozen baby broad beans, primarily for convenience.

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BROAD BEAN PATTIES AND A SIMPLE GREEN MEZZE

Serves 4

Ingredients:   Continue reading “Echoes of Ancient Egypt. Broad Bean Patties with pitta bread, minted cucumber salad, pickled cucumbers and spinach. . . . Vegan . . .”