Friday 29 December 2006

Leek and Sweet Potato Soup

I love Leek and Potato soup and make it fairly regularly, but I had this soup at a meal a couple of weeks ago and loved it, so tried to make it myself. Just as easy to make as the other variety, but more filling if anything, and just as good tasting. Just butter, leeks, sweet potato, vegetable stock with salt and pepper really, then blended with the new blender.

  • 3 Leeks, chopped
  • 1 Large Sweet Potato, cut into cubes
  • 1 Pint of Marigold Swiss Vegetable Bouillon
  • 0.5 Pint Water
  • Salt and Pepper
  • A Couple of Bay Leaves
  • Tablespoon of Butter or Olive Oil

Heat the butter or oil in a sauce pan, then add the leeks and cook until softened. Then add the rest of the ingredients. Simmer for about 45 minutes. Depending on how you like your soup, blend either all or half the mixture with a hand blender.

You could also add some cream or milk at the end of cooking.

Thursday 28 December 2006

Homemade Hummus

I couldn't find any tahini in the shop, so decided to just get a load of sesame seeds and make my own. Also, I put small red pepper in there to sweeten it up. I got given a new blender for Christmas, and wanted to try it out, so this went down will with some cheese and onion bread. Really easy to make with a good blender.

Recipe for the Tahini
  • 2 tablespoons Sesame Seeds
  • Half teaspoon Sesame Oil
  • Few tablespoons Tepid Water

Blitz the sesame seeds in the blender, then add the other ingredients, adding the water until you have a thin paste.

Recipe for the Hummus
  • 400g can of Chickpeas
  • Juice of a Lemon
  • 2-3 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 4 cloves of Garlic, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon Paprika
  • 1 small Red pepper, de-seeded, de-veined and chopped
  • Salt and Pepper

Add the Chickpeas to the tahini in the blender and blend until a paste. Then add the other ingredients and continue to blend until the hummus starts turning a bit redder in colour. You can use right away, or store in the fridge before using.

Sunday 17 December 2006

Beef Meatball Curry

Reading this blog, you would be forgiven to think that I only make things like stew and curry. OK, in the last month or so, I have made these two recipes twice, but they're popular with guests as well as with myself. Besides, this time, I used beef mince instead of lamb. Actually, I think I prefer it with lamb mince, although I did cook it for an hour or so longer this time to get the gravy to a thicker consistency (and also to allow me to go get the wine which I knew Marisha wouldn't bring).

No photos unfortunately, as I can't find the charger for my camera battery. Also, with the awful tripod-less efforts I've made in these bad lighting conditions recently, I'm not sure any photo I would have taken would have done the finished product justice.

Specifications for the new site still continue. I think I'm going to have to at least get a personal version of the site going as I've had a few requests to see the recipes I'm using on-line.

Saturday 9 December 2006

Poker Night with Stew and Garlic Bread

I was hosting our infrequent poker night this evening, and rather than get pizza delivered like last time, we thought that we'd get a larger overall winners pot if I cooked and we got a load of beers from the supermarket. As one of the guys didn't turn up, this was actually not a bad idea as the pot was still a nice one to win, plus there was no shortage of food, beer and wine.

Ejaz requested that I do the Beef and Guinness Stew again, so I cooked that, plus got a couple of baguettes so that I could make some garlic bread.

The stew was very successful, although I think I might have put more cayenne pepper in the meat seasoning this time, as it was a quite a bit more spicy. Maybe too much. The garlic bread was also good, although the fact that Ejaz donated a couple of new knives (including a much needed bread knife) to my kitchen equipment cause, was a deciding factor as it meant I could actually cut the bread myself, rather than buying the pre-done stuff.

Tuesday 5 December 2006

Macaroni Cheese with Bacon and Leek

This didn't come out as well as I'd hoped. I don't have a cheese grater, and didn't have any pre-grated cheese, so the top didn't really come out as neat and golden brown as I'd have liked. Plus I didn't get the bacon as well done as I'd have liked, and overdid the leek. Still, my sister apparently hated it when my mum put bacon in Macaroni cheese when we were kids, and when she had the left-overs of this a couple of days later, said it was actually much nicer than she remembered.

Very easy to make though. Just pre-cook the bacon and the pasta. The leek doesn't really need cooking beforehand, just mix it with the bacon and pasta once they're done. Then make a couple of pints of cheese sauce and poor over the lot in the casserole. Then sprinkle with more grated cheddar, parmesan and black pepper and cook for about 40 minutes, grilling for the last bit if not crisping a little on the top.
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