Sweet Potato and Chilli Soup
This easy to make, delicious and healthy soup is the perfect winter warmer.
1 onion , roughly chopped
1 red chilli , finely chopped or a pinch of chilli flakes
1 tablespoon of fresh chopped coriander
2 garlic cloves , crushed
750g sweet potatoes , peeled and cut into chunks
vegetable stock fresh, cube or concentrate made up to 500ml
a pinch of paprika
a small carton of natural yoghurt (optional)
75g Gruyère cheese, grated
1. Melt a knob of butter in a large pan, add the onion, chilli, and garlic and cook for about 8 minutes until softened. Add the sweet potato and cook for a few more minutes. Add the stock, bring to the boil then simmer for about 10 minutes until the veg is soft.
2. Mash, or blend if you want a smooth soup. Add the natural yoghurt and fresh coriander. Season and serve with a sprinkling of the cheese and a pinch of paprika.
This popular tapas recipe makes a simple starter or side dish.
5 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion , chopped
2 garlic cloves , chopped
227g can chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato purée
2 tsp paprika
good pinch chilli powder
chopped fresh parsley , to garnish
1. Slowly heat the oil in a pan, add the onion and fry for about 5 minutes until softened. Add the garlic, tomatoes, tomato purée, paprika, chilli powder, sugar and salt and bring to the boil, stirring. Simmer for 10 minutes until pulpy.
2.Preheat the oven to 200C/gas 6/fan oven 180C. Cut the potatoes into small cubes and pat dry with kitchen paper. Spread over a roasting tin and toss in the oil, then season. Roast for 40-50 minutes, until the potatoes are crisp and golden.
3.Tip the potatoes into dishes and spoon over the reheated sauce. Sprinkle with the parsley.
My favourite French dessert, I first tasted this in Paris a long, long time ago. This is equally delicious with cherries or pears.
70g plain flour
90g caster sugar
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
3 eggs plus 1 egg yolk
240ml whole milk
For the apples:
1/4 vanilla pod, split lengthwise or a tsp of vanilla essence.
30g unsalted butter
1 large Granny Smith apple peeled and sliced
30g caster sugar
Icing sugar for dusting
85g creme fraiche
1 tsp grappa, Calvados, or other fruit brandy (optional)
1..Preheat the oven to 200C/Gas Mark 6.
2.. Make the batter: sift the flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt into a bowl. In a separate bowl, Whisk the eggs, egg yolk, and milk until well blended. Add about 1/3 of the egg mixture to the flour mixture and Whisk until smooth, then gradually incorporate the remaining egg mixture. Whisk until well blended. Cover with clingfilm and refrigerate while you prepare the apples.
3 Cook the apples: with the tip of a knife, scrape the vanilla pod seeds from the pod into an ovenproof 25cm oven proof dish. Add the pod and the butter and cook over moderately high heat until the butter turns nut brown. Add a pinch of salt. Add the apples and cook, stirring often, until slightly softened, about 2 mins. Remove the vanilla pod and discard. Sprinkle the apples with the sugar, add the grappa, reduce the heat to moderately low, and cook until the apples are almost cooked through and the sugar has melted and is coating the apples in a light syrup. Spread the fruit evenly in the dish.
4. Working quickly, pour batter evenly over the fruit. Bake until the edges of the clafouti are puffed and browned and the center is set, about 15 mins.
5.Put some icing sugar in a sieve and generously dust the surface of the clafouti. Serve warm directly from the dish with a dollop of creme fraiche.
BEETROOT AND APPLE SOUP
• 700g uncooked beetroot
• 2 medium onions
• 2 garlic cloves
• 2 eating apples
• 50g unsalted butter plus a knob extra
• 200ml dry cider
• 1.2 litres chicken stock
• sea salt and black pepper
• trimmed sliced spring onions to taste
• about 3 tbsp crème fraîche
1. Trim, peel and slice the beetroot. Peel and chop the onions. Peel and finely chop the garlic. Peel, core and slice the apples.
2. Melt the 50g butter in a large pan over a lowish heat and fry the onions and garlic for 5-8 minutes until soft and glossy, stirring occasionally. Add the beetroot and apples and continue to fry for another 5 minutes, again stirring occasionally. Add the cider and reduce until syrupy, and then add the chicken stock and some seasoning. Bring to the boil over a high heat, and then cover and simmer over a low heat for 30 minutes.
3. Purée the soup in batches in a food processor (or blender if you like a very smooth soup), and then return it to the saucepan and taste to check the seasoning.
4. About 10 minutes before the soup is ready, heat the knob of butter in a frying pan and fry the spring onions over a low heat until soft, about 8 minutes, seasoning them and stirring frequently.
5. Reheat the soup if necessary before ladling it into warm bowls. Finish with a spoonful of spring onions in the centre and a dollop of crème fraîche on top. Eat straight away.
SWEET POTATO, APPLE AND GINGER SOUP
• 1 large onion, chopped
• 2-3 tbsp olive oil or butter
• 2 tsp chopped fresh ginger, plus 1 extra tsp finely chopped, to garnish (optional)
• 450g sweet potato, peeled and cut into chunks
• 1 large Bramley apple, peeled, cored and chopped
• 900ml vegetable stock, plus a little extra as necessary
• Small bunch of fresh coriander, plus a few sprigs, chopped, to garnish
• Lemon juice, to taste
• 2 pinches caster sugar
• 1 large dessert apple, cored and chopped, to garnish (optional)
• 4 tbsp yogurt or sour cream
1. Fry the onion very gently, covered, in 2 tablespoons of the oil or butter for 5 minutes. Add the ginger and the sweet potato and fry gently, covered for another 6-8 minutes. (The vegetables should gently sweat rather than fry.) Add the apple, stir and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the stock, coriander and salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook, half covered, for 15-20 minutes or until the sweet potato and apple are tender.
2. Put in a blender to form a smooth soup, thin out if you like with a little more stock. Add some lemon juice and maybe a pinch of sugar to taste – depending on how sweet or tart your apples are. Reheat gently, but do not boil.
3. If you like an apple garnish, fry the apple and ginger gently in the remaining oil or butter until browned and just tender, add a good pinch of sugar and cook for 1-2 minutes more. Ladle the soup into hot bowls. Drizzle a spoonful of yogurt or sour cream over each bowl, then a spoonful of the apple (if using) and some chopped coriander. Grind over some black pepper, and serve.
Tip: A lovely soup to make with orange-fleshed sweet potatoes. The acidity in the apples balances out the sweetness of the potato, while the fresh ginger adds a warm, spicy background flavour.
• 6 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and diced
• 250g caster sugar
• 200g plain flour
• 120g butter
• 1 clove or cinnamon stick
Put the apple chunks into a pan, add three quarters of the sugar, the cinnamon stick or clove and cover. Allow to stew gently for half an hour, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon. Keep checking as they can easily burn at the beginning.
Check that the fruit is cooked by mashing it a bit with a wooden spoon. The apples should be soft but not puréed.
Put the apples into the serving dish and allow to cool. Set the temperature of the oven to 150 C / gas 2.
Mix the flour, remaining sugar and the butter with your fingers in a bowl until it becomes like a breadcrumb consistency. Cover the stewed apples with the crumble topping, without pressing down.
Bake for approximately 30 minutes or until the crumble is golden brown and crunchy. Spoon a helping of crumble into a dish and serve with cream or ice cream.
Beetroot and Horseradish Soup
Prep: 5 minutes
Cooking time 45 minutes
1 tbs vegetable oil
3 cloves of garlic
750g fresh beetroot
500ml vegetable stock
3tbs cream of horseradish sauce
1tbs cranberry sauce (optional)
Parsley to dress
1 Finely dice the onion and chop the garlic and sauté in the oil until soft.
2 Boil the beetroot till cooked (around 45 minutes). Rinse in cold water and then peel and dice.
3. Simmer with the onion and garlic and vegetable stock until cooked enough to blend.
4 Add the cream of horseradish. You can sweeten this further with a dollop of cranberry jelly if you wish. Serve hot with a scattering of parsley.
Quinoa Superfood Salad
300g Red and White Quinoa.
75g pine nuts.
75g pumpkin seeds.
1 Mango diced.
1 small handful mint , chopped.
1 Small handful coriander, chopped
300g green puy lentils (tinned or dried).
For the dressing
2 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger
1 garlic clove, pressed
3 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon of soy sauce,
Combine the salad ingredients and add the dressing!
175g plain chocolate, grated
5 tbsp milk
To make the sauce, put the grated chocolate, butter and milk into a heatproof bowl. Bring a pan of water to boiling point, turn off heat and stand the bowl over it to warm and melt the chocolate. Stir in orange zest.