Boxing Day Foodies

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Blood Orange Sour

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.

Ingredients:

  • 100ml Blood Orange Gin ( I used Beefeater Gin)
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup (golden syrup will also work well)
  • 350 ml smooth blood orange juice
  • Rosemary
  • Ice … lots of it

Method:

  1. Using a jug mix the gin, syrup and blood orange juice together thoroughly.
  2. Take 2 tumbler glasses and a couple of rosemary leaves and rub around the rim of both glasses
  3. Place 3-4 rosemary leaves at the bottom of each glass and fill generously with ice cubes.
  4. Evenly distribute the gin mixture into both glasses. Garnish with a sprig of rosemary and serve.

Enjoy 😊

Beef & Peanut Stew

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.

Ingredients:

  • 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
  • Salt

Method:

  1. On medium heat, start by browning the meat for a couple of minutes, then remove and keep to one side.
  2. Pour in the oil and add the shallot, garlic, fresh chilli and ginger and fry together for 3-4 minutes.
  3. Add the sweet potato, cayenne pepper and season with salt and cook for a couple of minutes.
  4. Add the chopped tomatoes, mix and bring to the boil.
  5. 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.

Enjoy ☺️

Cauliflower & Fig Smoothie

Yes, that’s right guys cauliflower, you read that correctly. A unique combination of ingredients to get you started for the day. A slightly thicker consistency than most smoothies so it can also be used as the base for a breakfast bowl, just add a few more figs or some chopped banana or whatever you fancy really; mix it up as you like. A combination of both sweet, savoury and earthy flavours making this recipe like no other.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup chopped cauliflower
  • 200ml coconut milk
  • 4 soft figs
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 dsp peanut butter
  • 1 dsp golden syrup
  • 8-10 ice cubes

Method:

1. Using a blender or food processor blitz all ingredients until smooth. Serve in a glass or alternatively in a bowl if you prefer using the mixture as a breakfast bowl base.

Courgette Gazpacho

A twist on the Spanish classic; only no tomatoes and a considerably greener looking chilled soup. A real refresher, filled with natural and healthy ingredients. In this recipe I decided to remove any bits in the blending process, however you can leave it the way it is and enjoy the earthier flavours and added texture. Additionally, if you keep the sieved bits in a separate bowl you could either boil up some potatoes or some pasta and use that as your base, mixed with some extra virgin olive oil; this way nothing goes to waste and you get all the nutrients from the ingredients.

Ingredients:

  • 1 courgette
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 5-6 basil leaves
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 400ml water
  • 1 spring onion
  • A handful of curly kale
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Extra Virgin olive oil

Method:

  1. Put all ingredients into a food processor and blitz until smooth.
  2. Strain the mixture through a sieve and into a deep bowl or jug.
  3. Leave in the fridge for at least an hour before serving.
    Optional: upon serving drizzle over some extra olive oil and serve.

Enjoy ☺️

Baked Peach Salad

Who said that fruit can only be eaten in a sweet setting? The baked peaches in this salad go amazingly well with the salty feta and peppery rocket. An easy lunch or something to bring along to a picnic if you’re in the mood for something different.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 4 peaches, stone removed and quartered
  • 120g feta, crumbled
  • 1 handful rocket
  • 70g fennel, sliced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp golden syrup
  • Salt

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 160 °C (fan), gas mark 4.
  2. Place the peach pieces on a baking tray and place in the oven; bake for 10 to 12 minutes.
  3. Using a small bowl, mix the olive oil, golden syrup and season with a pinch of salt and leave to one side.
  4. Then build the salad starting with the rocket, spread the leaves making a green base.
  5. Distribute the fennel evenly along with the feta. Add the peach quarters and drizzle over the syrup dressing and serve.

Enjoy 🙂

Black Olive Dip

It’s another warm weekend here in London. Keeping food light, healthy and not too heavy is the way to go.

Ingredients:

  • 12 pitted black olives
  • 2 tbsp natural Greek yogurt
  • 215g butter beans, drained
  • 1 tsp water
  • 3 basil leaves
  • 1 dsp olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Method:

1. Using a food processor, blitz all ingredients together until smooth. Serve with some dried oregano a drizzle of olive oil and a few olives.

Enjoy ☺️

Baked Aubergine with Halloumi & Tomato

There’s nothing better than veggies that are in season! The colour, the taste and texture wakes up your senses and wonders how something can look and taste so good. This recipe celebrates two incredible ingredients that are in season at the mo – aubergine and tomato. Roasting the aubergine whole brings the flavours out best – the insides slowly steaming in its own juices. If you aren’t lucky enough to have your own tomato vines at home, I would: 1) 100% recommend you try next year and 2) go out of your way to buy the freshest and best ones you can get your hands on. Paired with the salty Halloumi this dish is quintessential summer; you will not be disappointed!

Ingredients:

  • 1 aubergine
  • 170g halloumi, patted dry with a kitchen towel and sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 100ml water
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 6 sweet on the vine tomatoes
  • 1 dsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 dried oregano
  • 1 tsp tomato puree
  • Chilli flakes (optional)

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 190 or Gas Mark 6.
  2. Using a knife, pierce several holes in the aubergine. Place on a baking tray in the centre of the oven and leave to cook for 40-45 minutes or until tender. Once cooked remove from the oven, scoop out the tender aubergine and discard the skin and leave to one side.
  3. In a frying pan, start by cooking the garlic in the olive oil for a couple minutes on medium heat.
  4. Add the tomatoes and cook for 2-3 minutes or until the juices start to release.
  5. Add all the seasonings and the tomato puree and cook for a minute, stirring occasionally.
  6. Add in the shredded aubergine and mix well.
  7. Pour in the water, mix and leave to simmer for 10-12 minutes or until the liquid has reduced and thickened.
  8. Using a separate pan, fry the halloumi on both sides until lightly browned- golden.
  9. Upon serving, add the lemon to the aubergine mix and stir. Then assemble your dish with the halloumi on top and a sprinkling of chilli flakes (optional).

Enjoy 🙂

Borlotti Bean Curry

That’s right guys, you read correctly bortlotti bean curry, tasty, full of flavour and a little summin different to indulge in during the week or at the weekend.

Ingredients:

  • 1 can (400g) borlotti beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 inch piece ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 large vine tomato, finely chopped
  • 1/4 tsp onion granules
  • 1 tsp tomato puree
  • 1/4 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp hot chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/4 ground cumin
  • 120ml water
  • Salt
  • Natural yogurt (optional)

Method:

  1. On medium heat start by heating the beans and the bay leaves for a couple of minutes.
  2. Then add the oil, garlic and ginger and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add the tomato, all the seasonings including the salt and cook for a further 2 minutes.
  4. Put in the puree and fry for a minute, stirring occasionally.
  5. Pour in the water and leave to simmer for 8-10 minutes and then serve.
    Optional: upon serving add a spoonful of natural yogurt for added creaminess and to balance the spiciness.

Best served hot with some rice and poppadoms 🙂