This is the second recipe we are contributing to the #Stayhomeeatveg crop share by Global Gardens project. You can read Lia’s blog on Global Gardens Website News Section from 10/06/2020 where she talks about what this crop means to her and shares tips and ideas on cooking with fresh broad beans.
Creamed broad beans with yoghurt and roasted hazelnuts on crostini
You will need three crostini slices for this recipe too. For the Crostini all you need is finely sliced bread (up to 2cm) brushed with olive oil and toasted on a really hot non stick pan. Now for the topping.
What (three portions):
- 100g shelled and double podded green broad beans
- 10g butter (nearly a Tbsp)
- Pinch of salt
- 70 to 100g Greek or other yoghurt
- Savory herb leaves (optional)
- Take a handful of whole hazelnuts, place in a baking tray and bake for 10 minutes on a hot oven (200 degrees Celsius). Remove to a plate and cool down.
- You will need around 300g broad beans in pods to yield 100g double podded beans.
- Remove the bean seeds from the pod. Keep the pods aside to make delicious fritters on the same day.
- Blanche the beans in boiling water for at least 3 minutes. Cool and remove the shell. Here is how to do it.
- Melt the butter in a non-stick pan, toss the split beans in with a pinch of salt and stir fry for a couple of minutes.
- Mash with a hand masher in the pan on really low heat.
- Take of the heat and whilst still warm, add the yoghurt (and savory if using) and mash to a creamy consistency.
- Peel the skin off the hazelnuts by rubbing between your hands. Roughly chop or grind.
- Place a thick layer of Fava/creamed broad beans on each crostini. Top with the hazelnuts and some freshly ground pepper if you prefer.
Getting down your greens is a very important step of keeping healthy during winter! Kale is a member of the brassica family and has great nutritional value. From high levels of iron, vitamin K, C and A, to anti inflammatory benefits it’s a food both accessible, locally grown and often organic.
Kale can help you increase your greens intake in easy and tasty ways. Make a pledge now to eat more veg any time of the year. Follow the #vegpower campaign for inspiration.
Here’s an easy recipe to get you started – Kale with spaghetti. When Zöe Rozellar walked into our kitchen with this idea of cooking kale it opened so many possibilities! You can also enjoy the kale as a side, for breakfast with egg (Zöe’s favourite) or with rice/couscous/quinoa. You may also add raw or cooked mushrooms to this dish – the red elf cup mushrooms from Blaencamel market stalls were a treat with this dish.
Ingredients (2-4 portions depending on starter or main size)
- 300g organic kale
- 1Tbsp. Sesame seeds
- 250g spaghetti
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1/2 tsp. Paprika
- 1/2 tsp. Ground nutmeg or more
- Olive oil
- 250g goats cheese or feta cheese
Preparation (up to 30min)
- Wash the kale, pull leaves off the harder stalk (if not tender) and drain.
- In a big baking tray dress in 1/2 tsp salt, the sesame and a couple of generous lugs of olive oil. Massage well so that oil and salt dress all leaves.
- Bring water to the boil for pasta adding salt and oil. And preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
- At the same time you start boiling the pasta, add the kale in the oven after you cover the tray tightly with aluminum foil.
- The kale should bake at least for the duration of your pasta preparation.
- Once the pasta boils and is in the colander, return the pot to heat, cover its base with olive oil and add the two cloves of garlic roughly chopped.
- Lower the heat and stir fry the garlic till softer – a couple of minutes – taking care not to burn.
- Add the paprika, nutmeg and 1/2 tsp of pepper and stir fry for about half a minute or so.
- Add the spaghetti and a pinch of salt. Toss well to dress in spices.
- Remove the kale from oven, add to pot and stir well.
- Remove dish from heat and add the crumbled cheese.
- For a vegan version add Dukkah or roasted and crushed hazelnuts instead of cheese.
Last week our box from Blaencamel Farm looked like a picture of autumn itself. Whilst new crops like squashes are being harvested some of the summer crops like the last of the tomatoes and chillies are still going. The greens, such as Cavolo Nero, are a darker shade. My seasonal compass is navigated towards deeper flavours, with spice combinations that help us transition seasons comforting us during the first frosts.
This dish I cooked and loved a lot last year. It grew from my fascination with how spices and ingredients fuse and connect culinary cultures. And it uses some of my most loved ingredients. Dill as herb much loved in Northern Greece where I am from but also prolific in Iranian and Ukrainian cuisines. Cumin for us Greeks of the eastern side (just a pinch mind). Caraway, a key spice for the soothing borscht and much Ukrainian cooking. Sour grape powder typical in Iranian cooking. Goji berries instead of the Iranian barberry. Turmeric, ginger, beetroot, pomegranates, tomatoes, parsley… You can see where this is going. It’s a tasty cure on a plate. You can replace some of the fresh turmeric and ginger with powder although I think it is much nicer when fresh is used. I serve this dish with brown rice.
Order your seasonal Blaencamel veg box online www.blanecamelbox.com or by email to Tom Frost (Tom@blaencamelbox.com). Find out more about Lia’s Kitchen and subscribe on Lia’s newsletters here www.liaskitchen.com
Ingredients (Feeds 6 people)
- 1 Hokkaido or other squash, 700g
- 250g beetroot (raw grated or small cubes)
- 300g cherry tomatoes halved or whole or 1 tin whole organic tomatoes
- 1 onion, sliced
- 4 cloves garlic roughly chopped
- 200g of autumn greens, roughly chopped (kale, Cavolo nero or Japanese greens will do as) (optional)
- 1/2 Hungarian wax chilli (optional)
- 5cm turmeric chunk grated OR 1tsp. turmeric powder
- 3cm ginger chunk grated OR ½ tsp ginger powder
- 1 tsp sweet paprika powder
- 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
- 1 tsp. caraway seeds
- 1 Tbsp. fresh dill finely chopped OR 1 tsp dried dill (both heaped)
- 30g fresh parsley chopped
- 1 tsp sour grape powder (optional – available at middle eastern shops)
- Pinch of oregano
- 1 small handful of dried goji berries
- Juice of one lemon or half an orange
- 1 can pre-cooked beans (recommend borlotti or cannellini but use what you have)
- Up to 2 cups hot water or vegetable stock(500ml)
- Pomegranate seeds (optional)
- 2tsp sea salt
Preparation (approximately one hour)
- Place the goji berries in citrus juice for the duration of the preparation.
- Peel and grate or cube the beetroot. If using cooked beetroot cook an hour before prep starts.
- Halve the squash and remove seeds with a tablespoon. Peel, slice and cube in 5 cm chunks (not too small).
- Stir fry the onion, 1 tsp salt and spices (cumin, caraway, paprika, turmeric, ginger and sour cherry &chilly if using) for five minutes on low heat to soften and release aromas.
- Add the garlic and oregano stir fry for a couple more minutes.
- Add the squash, beetroot and beans and stir well.
- Add the softened goji berries with the citrus juice, the chopped dill and parsley. Stir well.
- Add the hot water or stock with another tsp of salt.
- Stir well, cover and simmer for thirty minutes. Then add the greens and simmer for another fifteen minutes.
- Enjoy with a dollop of Greek yoghurt, walnuts and honey and pomegranate seed or apple if you fancy a fruity taste.
If you are left with little pieces of chocolate eggs or you want to make the most of Easter chocolate on offer at shops this week this easy and quick dessert recipe is for you. It requires no baking and it is a great one to make with the kids, who I am sure will be quite happy to help you smash those biscuits!
Kormos, which means tree log in Greek, is unlike the baked chocolate log recipes you know. It uses crumbled biscuits, roughly chopped nuts, melted chocolate to make a delicious dessert that does not need baking and can be frozen for a while if you would rather not eat any more chocolate for a while.
Ingredients (feeds 10)
- 300g mixed chocolate
- ¾ -1 packet of rich tea biscuits roughly crushed
- 150g and up to a cup roughly chopped almonds or other nuts of your choice
- 350g double cream
- 100g icing sugar
- 3 Tablespoons amaretto liqueur or cognac
Preparation (20 minutes and 2-3 hour refrigeration time)
- Melt the chocolate with the cream, the liqueur and the icing sugar and melt in a bain marie.
- Remove the melted chocolate mixture from heat and cool down.
- Roughly chop or crush the almonds and the biscuits.
- Mix the biscuits and almonds well in the mixture.
- Line a bread baking tin with baking paper making sure there is enough excess paper on all sides to fold around the mixture.
- Pour the cooled down mixture in the tin and fold the baking paper neatly around it.
- Refrigerate overnight or at least for 2 hours on the coolest shelves of the fridge.
- You can speed up the process by adding the mixture in the freezer for an hour.
- Once the mixture is cooled down and more solid you can remove from the tin, wrap in cling film and then refrigerate or freeze.
- Before serving, dust with some cocoa powder and slice to serve.
- If you have less chocolate you can still make this dessert. For 150g chocolate (half the amount in the recipe) add ¾ cup evaporated milk and 3 tablespoons cocoa powder.
- There are many ways to make this dessert, you can swap the cream with a tin of condensed milk if you are using dark chocolate. Just make sure you remove the icing sugar and add about 100g butter too.
- It is also possible to make the dessert without any chocolate – just replace the cream and chocolate with 250g butter, 6 tablespoon cocoa power and increase the icing sugar to half a cup.
- Basically this is a great leftover recipe and you can adapt it to what you have or can afford.
- You can keep the log frozen – just make sure you take it out of the freezer for 3 hours or overnight before serving.
- My ‘bain-marie’ is a pyrex bowl placed over a pot of boiling water.
This is a recipe for Suzanna and Andre. Thank you for the Easter visit, and the wonderful start to Spring.
This sauce will not let you down. You can use it as a salad dressing. It can add sharpness and a crescendo to dips or rice dishes when sprinkled over them as a finishing touch. And for the carnivores it is the perfect companion to roast lamb.
The freshness of mint reminds of summer. It is a herb so loved and an essential ingredient in Greek , North African , Arabic but also Caribbean cuisines which are amongst my favourite.
Not only does mint pair beautifully with cinnamon, lemon and lime, in drinks , foods and condiments but it’s medicinal properties are renowned. Mint is an antiseptic, it calms stomach upset, it decongests and helps us breath easy, but it also stimulates the mind.
Mint has many varieties, plain mint, peppermint and spearmint are the best known. As the summer sneaks in why not try to add mint to more of your drinks and food, it will lift you up and accentuate all flavours like no other herb , trust me.
1 large handful of fresh mint
1/2 cup olive oil
3 T white wine vinegar
1 garlic clove roughly chopped
1/2 t salt
Add all the ingredients in a blender
Pulse until the mint is finely chopped and turned into a creamy sauce.
Add toasted almonds for an extra special flavour .
Quinoa with sweet potato is becoming a real favourite at Lia’s Kitchen both when we are receiving guests but also when we are touring. This is an easy to make but very nutritious dish. It was on our September supperclub menu and last night this was a side dish at our dinner table when our Braunton family visited.
I am writing down this recipe for Miss Lyra May, or more accurately for her mom Beth, because she promised me that if her mommy cooks this recipe for her she will keep eating quinoa.
Now I know that this nearly four year old lady is a smart negotiator but , my dear Beth, I still think it is worth giving this a go. After all Miss Lyra’s one year old brother never objected at all to eating the quinoa.
1 cup red , mixed or plain quinoa
2 cups vegetable stock
1 large sweet potato coarsely grated
1 large onion finely chopped
1 (fresh) bay leaf
1/2 t mixed spices of cinnamon, cloves, pepper or a small pinch of each (optional)
1 garlic clove mashed (optional)
150 gr mince quorn (optional)
a couple of squeezes lime or lemon (optional)
1 small bunch parsley finely chopped
Boil two cups water and make vegetable stock.
Simmer the quinoa for up to twenty minutes, until cooked but not sticky.
Add enough olive oil to cover the base of a frying pan.
Add the onion and the bay leaf and sauté for a couple of minutes.
Add a pinch of salt.
Add the sweet potato and stir fry until soft -5 to 10 minutes.
Add the quinoa , parsley and if you need to some more olive oil.
Taste and season is necessary.
If you are using citrus juice add last.
Stir well and enjoy.
Shrove Tuesday is now gone but I’d like to think that pancakes can return to Lia’s kitchen before the next one in 2014.
Pancakes don’t always have to be overindulgent naughty treats. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
I hope this post becomes a quick and easy pancake recipe reference and an inspiration for an alternative savoury filling.
This recipe was given to me by Dan Green who, hat’s off to him, makes the best pancakes I have ever had-he flips them and all that! I just followed his instructions to make the batter, made a filling with what we had in the fridge and watched him put the pancakes together skilfully for us.
Aubergine and fenugreek pancake filling ingredients
1 small aubergine, cubed in 2cm pieces
Half an onion finely chopped
Half a tin of chopped tomatoes
Pinch of cinnamon powder
3-4 handful fresh fenugreek leaves roughly chopped
100gr or more grated cheddar
Stir fry the aubergine, onion and a pinch of salt for five minutes.
Add the chopped tomatoes and cinnamon, stir and cook for five to ten minutes on low heat until soft and cooked.
Season with some salt and pepper (2-3 pinches of salt suggested).
When nearly ready add the fresh fenugreek.
Add the cheese when filling the pancake in the pan and whilst the second side is cooking.
You can optionally add some fresh baby spinach leaves when filling the pancake.
This is enough filling for four small pancakes.
Pancake Batter ingredients
125gr Spelt or whole meal flour
300 ml milk
A pinch of salt
Knob of butter from frying
Add all ingredients (not the butter) and whisk to mix well.
Let the batter sit in the fridge for 20 minutes or until you prepare your fillings.
Heat a non stick frying pan on high heat.
Melt enough butter to coat the pan’s surface.
Add about a ladle full of batter in your pan.
Lift and swirl until the batter evenly covers all the surface and almost ‘licks’ its sides upwards. 
Lower the heat and cook for a minute or until ready-that’s when it’s easy to flip.
Flip and whilst the pancake is cooking fill with preferred filling and cheese , or fruit and chocolate.
Fold in four in the pan.
This amount of batter should give you six small pancakes and plenty for two people.
Enjoy whilst hot!
 This should help you flip the pancake easier.
The Smoked Haddock Salad was created by chance to complement a colourful mid-week meal with two beautiful friends, the wonderful Chris, a loved fellow Cardiffian, whose company I have been enjoying so much lately (yey!!), and the beautiful Katerina who is brightening up our week with her express visit from Greece- ex Cardiffian (but always one at heart).
This fish salad tastes even better the day after when its simple flavours have infused the haddock overnight in the fridge.
The recipe was inspired by 300gr of smoked haddock that needed to be cooked on the day, our need for a light salad, and a quick google search for haddock salad recipes, of which eventually I followed none but one of which gave me the mustard vinaigrette idea.
It takes 15-10 minutes to makes and can be enjoyed warm too!
Smoked Haddock Salad: Feeds 4-6 as side salad and 2 for lunch
- 300gr skinless and boneless smoked haddock
- 300gr fine green beans chopped in three
- 2 celery sticks, thickly sliced
- a small bunch of flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
- half a red onion , finely chopped
- 2 Tbsp whole grain mustard
- 1 tsp salt
- Olive oil
- 3 Tbsp cider vinegar
- Add the chopped fine green beans in a flat, large shallow pan with 1/3 of it filled with boiling water.
- Simmer for five minutes, remove and drain. Keep the water boiling in the same pan.
- Add the whole fillets of smoked haddock and steam/simmer for ten minutes. Add a bit more boiling water if necessary.
- Prepare the vinaigrette by mixing in a jar the mustard, salt, cider vinegar and olive oil. Use as much olive oil as you think you need but at least five Tbsp. Shake the jar vigorously until the vinaigrette has a loose but creamy consistency. Adjust seasoning to taste.
- Remove the haddock and drain.
- Add haddock to a shallow salad bowl and flake roughly with a fork.
- Add the chopped parsley, beans and onion.
- Dress with the vinaigrette and mix well.
Enjoy as a light lunch or dinner for two on salad leaves or toasted rye bread , or as a light side dish.
Love your belly and your friends. 🙂 =love yourelf
The two recipes for cabbage rolls (lachanontolmades or sarmades) adjusted from the Greek edition Christmas issue of Olive magazine
For our New Year’s Eve dinner we had a varied spread including a spinach Quiche, the recipe for which I gave you two weeks ago, a butternut squash pie made by Elpida, vegetatian lasagne made by Valentina Brioschi and finally cabbage rolls, lachanontolmades or sarmades.
Cabbage rolls are an ideal party dish but you can also prepare it as a main course. I think it is an fantastic dinner dish for the post-Christmas healthy eating time when all of us are looking for light but tasty treats. It is possible to diet with flavoursome and light dishes, no need to torture yourself.
I got the idea to cook these very different cabbage rolls recipes from the Christmas Greek edition of Olive magazine. The recipes were provided by Simona Kafiri and Georgia Kofina. I adapted the simplified version of the traditional Greek cabbage rolls to my liking, and a tested a new spicier version with a red sauce that uses diced pork instead of minced meat. Both are fantastic. I also discovered that you can use iceberg lettuce to make a lighter but extremely tasty version of the dish. So here is my innovation!
The recipes below can feed 6 people and take nearly 2 hours to prepare and cook.
Thanks to Dan Green for photos.
Two cabbage roll recipes: one traditional and one spicy
Preparation of cabbage, the basic ingredient, 30min
1 large or two medium white cabbages
1 iceberg lettuce
This is the first step of your preparation. But you can also start with the preparation of the spicy filling as it needs to simmer and cool down before the cabbage leaves are stuffed.
It is impossible to fill and roll cabbage without blanching or slightly boiling it. Remove outer cabbage leaves that might be scarred but keep for layering the base of your pots before cooking.
Cut around the base of the cabbage with a sharp knife and remove the stem of the cabbage(s).
Place the cabbage in a large deep pot with boiling water and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove and cool down before peeling the leaves and preparing them for filling and rolling.
As I started to peel the leaves I realised that I did not have enough cabbage for all my filling. I was pushed for time so I decided to experiment with iceberg lettuce as an alternative. Iceberg lettuce leaves are quite firm compared to other lettuce varieties, so I peeled and dipped them in the hot, but no longer boiling water, for 30seconds to a minute to soften. Iceberg lettuce rolls are absolutely amazing and surprisingly worked really well, particularly with the traditional recipe.
For the new spicy filling of Georgia Kofina, 20 min:
300 gr pork fillet or chops, finely diced
¼ cup rice (either Carolina variety or Thai rice) – the rice you have will do
½ large onion, finely diced
1 garlic clove
2 Tbspns finely chopped parsley
1/6 cup olive oil or about 4 Tbspns
1 cup stock (either home-made or bouillon meat stock)
¼ glass white wine
½ tspn paprika and cayenne pepper
Sautee the onion in the olive and then add the garlic.
Once translucent add the white wine and then add the meat, rice, parsley, paprika and cayenne pepper, and finally, add the stock and season.
Cover and simmer at very low heat until the rice absorbs all liquid.
Then remove from the heat and set aside to cool down before the rolling begins.
For the sauce of the spicy version of Georgia Kofina, 5 min:
3 celery sticks thickly diced
1 carrot, peeled and roughly diced
200 gr finely diced ripe tomatoes
¼ cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to season
Prepare all your ingredients for the sauce. You don’t need to do anything else at this stage as all ingredients are added to the cooking pot after you laid your rolls.
For the traditional filling adapted from Simona Kafiri’s recipe:
175 gr minced pork
150 gr minced beef
1 large onion, grated
½ cup of finely chopped parsley
½ green pepper finely diced
¼ cup grated ripe tomatoes (1 or 2 tomatoes)
1 ½ flat tsbns salt
Freshly ground pepper
¼ cup rice (either carolina variety or Thai rice) – the rice you have will do
½ tspn ground cloves
½ tspn ground cinnamon
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl with your hands and set aside for filling.
Filling, rolling and cooking, 1.5 hrs:
2 separate pots, 25cm circumference or at least 20cm
The red sauce ingredients you have prepped for the new and spicy version.
2 Tbspn olive oil or butter (for the traditional recipe)
1 ½ cup stock (either home-made or bouillon meat stock) (for the traditional recipe)
Add a little bit of olive oil at the bottom of each pot. If you have kept the outer leaves of the cabbage layer the pot with these/ Remove the thick end (vein) of each cabbage leaf by making an (upside down) V shaped incision. This way you will be able to roll the leaf more easily.
Add enough filling in the middle and roll the cabbage leaf, by folding its outer sides in and then rolling so that you can have the top of the leaf facing your cooking surface. You should then place the roll in the pot, with the top of the leaf facing the bottom of the pan, this way your rolls will not unfold and open whilst cooking. It is a lot easier to roll with the iceberg lettuce leaves.
Use all cabbage leafs and layer the rolls in the pot close and tight to each other. I made to layers of rolls in each pot. If you are using iceberg lettuce roll too, you can place those on the second layer as they will cook faster.
For the new spicy version, spread the celery and carrots over the rolls, evenly pour the tomato and olive oil and add some salt and pepper. I had to add some more stock to the pot, just a couple of tablespoon. Simmer on low heat for 45 minutes.
For the traditional recipe, add the olive oil and stock in the pot. Cover and simmer for 1 hr. Don’t throw away the liquid.
Once the rolls are cooked, set aside for cooling and serve on long platters garnished with the sauces you have prepare.
For the traditional recipe sauce, Avgolemono, 10 minutes:
1 Tbspn Corn flour
1 Tbspn butter
¼ cup lemon juice
1 egg yolk
Some paprika (optional)
You might prefer to have the traditional cabbage rolls as they are. But this avgolemono, lemon and egg, traditional sauce is the perfect accompaniment to this dish. Simona’s recipe of avgolemono is simple and delicious: I had never made it before but it was very easy to deliver.
Remember the sauce preparation must happen really quickly so have all your ingredients within easy reach. There should be about a cup of juices left in your pot from cooking and you will need all of it for your sauce.
Melt the butter in a small pot and mix in the flour well so that you have no lumps.
Then remove from the heat and mix in your egg yolk swiftly. Aim for a creamy mixture.
Immediately stir in the warm juices from the pot, little by little, constantly stirring on very low heat. Keep mixing until your sauce has thickened to the consistency of double cream.
Pour over your traditional cabbage rolls and enjoy!