Back with another recipe this week, a butternut squash and butter bean soup. Great for these colder and windy days we are having. Deliciously healthy, earthy and even creamy with the flavour of the butter beans.
1/2 a medium sized butternut squash
3 garlic cloves
1 can (400g) butter beans, drained
700ml vegetable stock
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp onion granules
1 rosemary sprig
1 tbsp olive oil
Start by preheating your oven to 200 (fan) and bake the butternut squash for 45 minutes to an hour.
Once you’ve removed the squash from the oven, scoop out its contents, disposing of the skin and place in a bowl. Using the back of a fork, thoroughly mush the squash until it’s mashed but not fully puréed, then leave to one side.
Get yourself a saucepan and on medium heat, start by frying the garlic in the oil for a minute.
Then add the squash, add all the seasonings and cook for 3 minutes.
Add the butter beans and fry for another 2 minutes.
Pour in the stock, mix and leave to cook for 10 minutes.
Add a generous sprig of rosemary, cover and leave for an additional 5 minutes and then serve.
We are nearly half way through the month and let’s be honest, we are all preparing for the Christmas holidays. Preparation is well underway in our household and it’s kicking off with a banger. Starting with this glass of deliciousness; a blood orange sour. Blood oranges are just so so tasty, a beautiful dark red flesh with a sweet but ‘soury’ citrus flavour that is just too good! I’ve doubled the alcohol quantity on this one and believe me, you won’t be disappointed and nor will your guests be over the celebratory period.
100ml Blood Orange Gin ( I used Beefeater Gin)
1 tbsp maple syrup (golden syrup will also work well)
350 ml smooth blood orange juice
Ice … lots of it
Using a jug mix the gin, syrup and blood orange juice together thoroughly.
Take 2 tumbler glasses and a couple of rosemary leaves and rub around the rim of both glasses
Place 3-4 rosemary leaves at the bottom of each glass and fill generously with ice cubes.
Evenly distribute the gin mixture into both glasses. Garnish with a sprig of rosemary and serve.
The perfect combination of meaty, spicy and nutty all in one. A classic if you’re feeling a mix up of flavours in this hearty dish; perfect for Autumn.
350g diced beef
400g can chopped tomatoes
450ml beef stock
1 tbsp smooth peanut butter
1 medium sized sweet potato, peeled and chopped into bite size chunks
3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 large shallot, roughly chopped
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 chilli, finely chopped
2 inch piece of fresh ginger, finely chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
On medium heat, start by browning the meat for a couple of minutes, then remove and keep to one side.
Pour in the oil and add the shallot, garlic, fresh chilli and ginger and fry together for 3-4 minutes.
Add the sweet potato, cayenne pepper and season with salt and cook for a couple of minutes.
Add the chopped tomatoes, mix and bring to the boil.
Pour in the stock and add the peanut butter and mix thoroughly. Drop the heat to medium low, cover and leave to cook and thicken for two hours or until the beef has become soft and tender, stir every 15-20 minutes or so ensuring that nothing has stuck to the bottom of the pan.
That’s right guys, we are back with a cheeky little autumnal recipe. Keeping it nice and simple with this first week back, plus, let’s be honest it’s not so cold out there for this time of the year so I think we can get away with a salad, albeit a ‘warmish’ salad. As a kid I had known persimmon as ‘Kaki’ fruit as that’s the word my parents had taught it to me as. In Italian it’s referred to as Kaki and it wasn’t until much later in life that I discovered that here in the UK it is called a persimmon and I’ve also heard it referred to as Sharon fruit? I don’t know where the Sharon comes from but hey?! Now I’m just going off on fruit names, let’s get back to the good stuff. Go on have a lil’ read of this recipe, you know you want to give this a go…
2 Persimmon/ Kaki fruit, cut into rings
1 Burrata, drained
1 tsp wholegrain mustard
1 tbsp golden syrup
1 tbsp olive oil
Ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 180 fan. Evenly distribute the persimmon rings on the baking tray and place in the oven. Bake for 15-20 minutes, flip them over half way through.
In the meantime, take a small bowl and add the mustard, golden syrup, olive oil, season with salt and pepper to taste and mix well.
Dress your dish of choice by starting with the persimmon, then using your hands tear the burrata and delicately place on and around the fruit. Drizzle over the dressing and serve.
It’s been a few weeks and I’m sure you’re wondering where the recipes have gone. I’ve been taking some time out to have a little reflection and spend some quality time with loved ones.
Growing up, the importance of family time was so valuable as it brought all the members together; both immediate and extended family united and connected with each other. For me, the vast majority of the time this was (and is) centred at the table sharing delicious food; food from all avenues of my cultural background. Lucky for me there are a fair few cuisines in there so, basically, I’m spoilt for choice!
During this time of reflection, not only does the food bring you together but it allows you to connect with people. Highlighting those family and friends who want to be around and those who have always been a constant; believe me, I am truly grateful and appreciative.
Getting creative in the kitchen and writing recipes are my absolute passion and justthe thing I really adore doing; it keeps me positive, calm and motivated. I am this way mainly because of my upbringing and valuing the importance of good food. If you are having good food at home then you’re lucky to have those foundations and the understanding of the additional values that comes with that. Additionally, family recipes. l’ve always found that these, especially the ones passed from generation to generation, are made with nothing but genuine love, and in turn, feel that that’s why home food and cooking is always a winner and the best food that you can have. Treasure those recipes that have been given to you, or even ask for a few, especially your favourites, and cook and share them with others. Below, I have found some photographs of some homemade family food to share with you, this is a combination of Armenian, Iraqi, Sardinian and Italian food.
The recipes will be back soon, it may be next week or even the week after but just hold on a little longer and the food goodies will be arriving in your emails soon.