Beetroot Pesto

Beetroot Pesto I always keep cooked beetroots in my fridge. They always end up being useful in one way or another. Continue reading

Last Friday I wanted to avoid staying too long outside in the cold, so I stayed home and cooked with whatever I had left at home. When I opened the fridge I saw the beetroots and I still had a little goat cheese left; that’s when I decided to give this pesto a try. I made the pesto in the morning and had it with some pasta in the evening. Besides the colour, which I find absolutely beautiful, I really enjoyed this recipe; it was a change from the traditional pesto recipe.

Beetroot Pesto Beetroot Pesto

 

Beetroot Pesto

 

Prep time: 5 min

 

Ingredients

90 g cooked beetroots

35 g dry roasted walnuts

1 tbsp. chopped onions

1 tbsp. chopped parsley

Rock salt and pepper

50 g finely grated hard goat cheese

1.2 dl olive oil

 

Recipe

Cut the beetroot(s) into chunks.

In a food processor place the beetroots, walnuts, chopped onions parsley, salt and pepper. Process the ingredients and rectify taste with salt and pepper if needed.

Add the cheese and the olive oil and mix all together.

Serve with pasta, on crostini and why not with some beef?

 

 

Baked Polenta with Chicken in a Tomato Sauce


Baked Polenta with Chicken in a Tomato Sauce Polenta is something sentimental to me.

Continue reading

When I was a child in the eighties, when we were expecting guests at home I still see myself jumping between the kitchen where my mother was preparing either a stew or some other meat, and the fireplace where my father would prepare the polenta the way it was made in more remote times. He would stay there for at least an hour, constantly stirring and adding milk and stirring again. In the mean time I would prepare them little love notes, which I would slip on the kitchen counter for my mother or under the milk carton for my father. While I made this recipe I remembered such times and it brought me back to those times. Polenta is a poor man’s food and yet it’s something which can easily be served for a dinner party as it’s so simple and it can be dressed up for so many occasions.

 

Baked Polenta with Chicken in a Tomato Sauce

 

Baked Polenta with Chicken in a Tomato Sauce

Recipe for 4

Prep time: 10 min

Cook time: 35-40 min

 

Ingredients:

250 g instant polenta

1.2 l stock

480 g chicken tenderloins (alternatively use chicken breast cut into 16 chunks)

1-2 tbsp. olive oil

1-2 tbsp. butter

2 heaped tbsp. chopped sage leaves

1 can chopped tomatoes

1 red onion

2 pressed garlic cloves

160 g grated cheese

0.8 dl cream

salt and pepper

 

Recipe:

Heat oven at 220°C.

Place the stock in a pan and bring to a boil. Once it’s simmering sprinkle in the polenta and cook for 8-10 min while constantly stirring. Towards the end add the cream, stir until combined and remove from heat. Add 120 g of the grated cheese, stir to combine in the polenta and add pepper to taste. Pour the prepared polenta in a greased baking dish.

Pat dry the chicken and season it with salt and pepper. Heat 1-2 tbsp. olive oil on high heat in a pan and sear the chicken on both sides. Remove the chicken from the pan, reduce fire and add 1-2 tbsp. butter with the onions, garlic and sage and fry for 4-5 min. Add the chopped tomatoes and cook for 8-10 until slightly reduced. Add back the chicken to the pan, toss and place on top of the polenta.

Sprinkle the rest of the grated cheese and bake in the oven for 15 min.

Potato and Beetroot Rosti

Potato and Beetroot Rosti I find rosti is a little like pasta or pizza: there’s infinity of combinations you can make. Continue reading

This time I have paired the usual potatoes with fresh beetroot. I like the earthy taste of the beetroot and this works so well with potatoes… I guess I’ve already said it, but I think that rosti is the Swiss comfort food and this time, the plus, is that it’s a dish high in colours. I just feel at home when I eat it. I served this rosti I made a blue cheese sauce by mixing 40g Roquefort, 100 g half-fat sour cream and pepper.

By the way, I’m sorry for the slight delay. We’ve been harvesting the whole day and I ran a little late since it’s almost a tradition to have a drink after work.

Potato and Beetroot Rosti Potato and Beetroot Rosti

Potato and Beetroot Rosti

Recipe for 3-4 as a side dish or for 1-2 as a main meal

Prep time:15 min

Cook time: 35-40 min

 

Ingredients:

 

200 g raw beetroot

600 g boiled potatoes, peeled

1 onion

2 tbsp. rapeseed oil

2 tbsp. butter

Salt and pepper

Recipe:

In a bowl grate the beetroot with a large holed grater. Either using a tea towel or using

a sieve, remove excess moisture.

In a second bowl grate the potatoes.

Chop the onion and add it to a pan with the rapeseed oil. Cook onion on a low-medium fire until translucent, about 5-7 min. Add the beetroot and the potatoes to the pan and cook them on a medium fire for 8-10 min, occasionally stirring. Season the preparation with salt and pepper to taste.

Shape the rosti into a patty and leave it to colour for 10-15 min. A couple of minutes before turning the rosti add half of the butter around the edges.

Turn the rosti with the help of a lid or a dish and leave to colour for another 10-15 min. Repeat the process by adding the butter the in last few minutes of the cooking process.

Serve warm, eventually with the blue cheese sauce.

Cheese and Onion Potato Croquettes with Roasted Tomato Sauce – Croquettes Fromage Oignons et Sauce Tomates Rôties

Cheese and Onion Potato Croquettes with Roasted Tomato Sauce

I don’t know about you but before I fall asleep at night I like to read until the book feels too heavy for my arms. Continue reading

What I read? Some of it is novels or short stories, some is history and this past year, much of it is cooking and recipes. In Ottolenghi’s cookbook Plenty (which I love) I came across a croquette recipe and immediately felt a craving for it. Since it was obviously already too late I decided to make cheese croquettes the following day.  Part of the attention to this recipe was also due to his introduction where he talked about the time he lived in Amsterdam. I also lived there for one year and since I found it’s such a great place I felt a little nostalgic. For my recipe I didn’t do much like Ottolenghi also because his croquettes are fried and I don’t usually do that because I don’t really care for the smell and where I live it’s annoying to get rid of the oil in the right place, especially when you don’t have a driver’s license… I made this recipe with ingredients I like together and in the end I enjoyed it. I hope you do too.

 

Cheese and Onion Potato Croquettes with Roasted Tomato Sauce

 

Cheese and Onion Potato Croquettes with Roasted Tomato Sauce

 

For 12-14 pieces

Prep time: 35 min

Cook time: 40 min

 

Ingredients

 

For the croquettes:

500 g floury potatoes

2 onions

60 g grated gruyere

1 knob butter

1 egg

Cream

5 tbsp breadcrumbs

 

For the tomato sauce:

400 g cherry tomatoes

1 tbsp olive oil + more as finishing touch

½ tsp dried oregano

2-3 garlic cloves

1 tsp fresh thyme leaves

1 tsp rosemary leaves

Salt and pepper

Chilli powder

1 pinch sugar

 

Recipe

Heat oven at 230° C.

Peel the potatoes and cut them into chunks. Place them in salted boiling water and cook until soft. Once ready drain and mash the potatoes with the knob of butter. Set aside to cool.

In a bowl place the cherry tomatoes with 1 tbsp olive oil, the oregano, salt and pepper. Crush the garlic with a knife and add it to the tomatoes. Toss and place the ingredients in a baking tray. Peel and slice the onions into 0.5 cm thick pieces. Coat with a little olive oil and place them either in the same baking tray as I did or in a separate one. Cook in the oven for about 15-20 min.

Remove the tray for the oven and remove the garlic cloves without throwing them away. Place the tomatoes with the rest of the ingredients in a blender. Take the garlic cloves and squeeze out the inside which should be soft and add it to the tomato mix. Blend all together, rectify taste with salt  and pepper and drizzle a little olive oil. Set aside.

Take the roasted onions, chop them and add them to the potatoes with the egg, grated cheese pepper and little salt. Mix well. Form little sausages with the potatoes the size of a large finger. In a bowl place the cream and in another dish place the breadcrumbs. Roll each potato piece first in the cream and them in the breadcrumbs. Place them on a parchment lined baking tray and cook in the oven for 20 minutes turning them after 10 minutes. Once they are coloured serve them warm with the tomato sauce (warm or cold).

 

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Version Française

 Cheese and Onion Potato Croquettes with Roasted Tomato Sauce Je ne sais pas vous mais le soir, avant de m’endormir,  j’aime lire jusqu’à quand le livre me semble trop lourd pour mes bras. Ce que je lis? Une partie de mes lecture est composée de romans une autre d’histoire mais depuis un an environ, mon nez se retrouve de plus en plus dans les livres de recettes et cuisine. Dans le livre Plenty de Ottolenghi (livre que j’adore) j’ai vu une recette de croquettes et avant que je m’en aperçoive, l’envie m’avais déjà prise.  Vu qu’évidemment il était déjà vraiment trop tard pour cuisiner, je me suis dite que je les ferais le jour suivant. Cette recette a attiré mon attention aussi par son introduction. Comme Ottolenghi, moi aussi j’ai vecu un an à Amsterdam : j’ai adoré l’expérience et je me suis sentie un peu nostalgique. Pour ma recette je n’ai pas suivi sa version aussi parce que ses croquettes sont frites et je ne fait pas de plats frits chez moi. L’odeur est une partie du pourquoi je ne fait rien frire à la maison. En plus, ici à la campagne,  se débarrasser des huiles de ménage peut être plutôt ennuyeux , surtout quand on a pas de permis de conduire… J’ai fait cette recette avec des ingrédients que j’aime ensemble et ça m’a bien plu. J’espère que vous l’aimerez aussi.

Cheese and Onion Potato Croquettes with Roasted Tomato Sauce

Croquettes Fromage Oignons et Sauce Tomates Rôties

 

Pour 12-14 pièces

Temps de préparation: 35 min

Temps de caisson: 40 min

 

Ingrédients

 

Pour les croquettes :

500 pommes de terre à chair farineuse

2 oignons

60 g gruyère râpé

1 noix de beurre

1 œuf

Crème liquide

5 cs chapelure

 

Pour la sauce tomate :

 

400 g tomates cerise

½ cc origan

2-3 gousses d’ail

1 cc feuilles de thym

1 cc romarin

Sel et poivre

Piments en poudre

1 pincée de sucre

 

Recette

Allumer le four à 230° C.

Pelez les pommes de terre et les couper en morceaux. Faites-les cuire dans de l’eau bouillante avec du sel. Une fois cuites, enlever l’eau et les réduire en purée en y ajoutant la noix de beurre. Mettre de côté et laisser refroidir.

Dans un bol mettre les tomates cerise avec 1 cs d’huile d’olive, l’origan, sel et poivre. Écrase l’ail à l’aide d’un couteau et l’ajouter au tomates. Mélanger et placer dans un plat allant au four. Peler et couper en tranche de 0.5 cm d’épaisseur l’oignon.  Enrober d’huile les tranches et les placer soit dans le même plat à four que les tomates ou séparément. Cuire les deux dans le four pendant 15-20 min.

Sortir le(s) plat(s) du four et mettre les tomates, sans les gousses d’ail, dans un mixer avec le reste des ingrédients pour la sauce. Prendre les gousses d’ail et les écraser enter les doigts pour en faire sortir la chair et l’ajouter au reste.  Mixer le tout et rectifier avec sel et poivre selon le gout. Comme touche finale ajouter un peu d’ huile d’olive et mettre la sauce de coté.

Prendre les oignons rôtis, les hacher et les ajouter au pommes de terre avec l’œuf, le fromage râpé, poivre et un peu de sel ; bien mélanger le tout. Former des petites saucisses avec la préparation de la grandeur d’un gros doigt. Dans un bol verser la crème et dans un autre y mettre la chapelure. Passer chaque pièce en premier dans la crème et après la rouler dans la chapelure. Mettre le croquettes sur une plaque couverte de papier sulfurisé et cuire dans le four pendant 20 minutes en les tournant à mi-cuisson. Une fois que le croquettes sont dorées et prêtes les servir chaudes aven la sauce tomate (chaude ou froide).

 

 


Coconut Chicken with a Basil Sauce

Coconut Chicken with a Basil Sauce (800 x 578)This week the summer weather was almost like an annoying guest who would not eve leave you alone in the evening to enjoy some spare time. When the weather is like this , I usually feel like eating something that is either fresh or that tastes fresh. I thought that for a ladies’ night this dish would have been appropriate to start us off, especially served with some chilled white wine. This coconut chicken and the basil dip sauce have a touch of exotic … something that always makes me feel like I’m on holiday. Continue reading

I would just like to say that for the sauce I took the inspiration from Gordon Ramsay’s ‘Beef Lettuce Wraps’ recipe (from his Ultimate Cookery Course book). In my recipe I have replaced coriander leaves with basil and I have directly added some chopped spring onion.


About Coconut:

Coconut is a fruit that has been around for so long that we do not really know where its origin lies. What we know though, is how its name originated. Here is an extract of the information I found. I did not really change anything about the test as I find the whole passage to be interesting: “The word coconut did not appear until after the Portuguese explorers in the 15th century. The explorers found this fruit growing on Indian Ocean islands, they described the coconut shell as a coco, or “grinning face” of a monkey because of its 3 dark holes at its base which look like a pop-eyed merry face. From then on, it was referred to as the “coconut”.
Although its name was recorded in Sanskrit in the early beginnings of history, the coconut was unknown to the western world until the 6th century, when it was imported into Egypt from the Indian Ocean–and still made little impression, though Marco Polo recognized it as “Pharaoh’s nut” when he ran across it in India on his travels.
In the Middle Ages, coconuts were so rare and so cherished that their shells were polished and mounted in gold. By the 19th century, however, new transportation routes made them common in European markets–and throwing objects (“coconut shies”) at local side shows.” (source: http://www.coconutrepublic.org/coconut_story.php )


Coconut Chicken with a Basil Sauce

Recipe for 4-6 as appetizer (or with some rice and green beans it could work as a meal for 2)
Prep. Time : 15-20 min
Cook Time : 25-30 min


Ingredients :

For the chicken :
1 ½ tsp flour
½ dl buttermilk
3 tbsp shredded coconut
½ tsp lime zest
¼ tsp ground chilli powder
Salt and pepper
8 chicken strips (or about 220-250g chicken breast)


For the dressing :
1tsp sesame oil
1tbsp soy sauce
Juice of ½ lime
1 tsp sugar
1 small chilli thinly sliced
1 spring onion thinly sliced (the green part only)
1tsp olive oil
7-8 chopped basil leaves


Chicken Recipe :

Heat the oven at 200°C.

Take three bowls. In the first place the flour, in the second the buttermilk and in the third place the shredded coconut. With the coconut bowl add the salt (about ¼ to ½ tsp), the pepper, ground chilli and the lime zest and rub the preparation together to blend in the flavours.

Take one strip of chicken and coat it with the flour. Move it to the buttermilk and soak it and let gravity drip away the excess. Finally coat the chicken with the coconut preparation. Repeat with all the strips.

Place the prepared chicken in the oven and cook for 25-30 minutes. When the chicken is ready let it rest for 3-minutes before serving.

For the sauce :

While the chicken is cooking it’s time to make thesauce. In a bowl mix the sesame oil, soy sauce, lime juice and sugar together ; then add the red chilli, the basil and the chopped spring onion.