I’m not a huge fan of purée on main course plates, but celeriac has such great flavour and goes so well with brown meats, particularly roast beef, so I find myself loving this. Plus, it’s really easy to make 😉
Wash, peel and rewash the celeriac. Chop it into 1 cm dice and place in a saucepan and barely cover with a half and half mix of milk and water, add a little salt.
Bring to the boil and simmer gently until tender and drain well, retaining the liquid. Place the celeriac chunks into the blender along with the butter and roughly half the retained liquid. Blend until smooth, if they won’t blend or the purée is a little thick you can add more of the retained liquid to help, but remember it’s a purée not a soup 😉
Taste and adjust the seasoning as required with salt and pepper.
100g Onion, diced
1 x Garlic, Chopped
100g Green Pepper
100g Red Pepper
50ml Olive oil
A good pinch of “Herbs de Provence”
a good pinch of chopped Parsley
Salt and Pepper to taste
First, we peel the tomatoes using the “blanch and refresh” method. Get a large saucepan of water on and bring to the boil. While you are waiting get a large bowl and fill it with cold or ice water. Using a very sharp knife or even a razor blade cut a small X in the bottom of each tomato, you only want to cut the skin, that’s all. Once the water is boiling add the tomatoes for no more than a minute, then remove them and plunge them into the cold/ice water, this should make them very easy to peel, then chop them into about 1 cm dice.
Slice the onion and finely chop the garlic, cut the peppers into slices about 2 – 3 cm long.
Add the olive oil, onions, garlic and peppers to a large thick bottomed cooking pot. Cover to keep in the moisture and cook over a medium heat for 20 minutes, stirring frequently and adding olive oil as necessary to prevent burning.
Now add the herbs de provence and peeled tomatoes, stir well and cook for another 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Chop the Aubergine and courgettes into a large dice (2cm) and add them to the pot. Cook for another 25 minutes, season to taste with salt and pepper and garnish with parsley.
Peel and wash the potatoes, then place them in salted water and bring to the boil and simmer for a minute. Drain the water and allow them to cool.
Next shred the potatoes, using a grater, into a large bowl. Heat the butter in a saucepan until it melts then add a little at a time to the shredded potatoes just enough to allow the mixture to bind together and season lightly with salt and pepper. You could add some herbs (maybe some fresh picked thyme or finely chopped rosemary) at this point, if you wanted to.
Form the mixture into rounds either by hand or using a ring mould.
Fry the shaped rosti in a hot pan on both sides until crisp and golden brown.
Prepare the broccoli by cutting the florets from the stalk and chopping into roughly equal sized pieces. Next peel and dice the stalk into small chunks.
Place some water in a saucepan, not enough to reach the bottom of your steamer basket, and bring this to the boil and reduce to a simmer.
Load the steamer basket with the stalk chunks first and then the broccoli florets on top.
Place the steaming basket into the saucepan and cover with a tight lid. Cook until done (a knife or skewer slides through easily) this should only take 4 – 5 minutes. Then remove from the heat and toss gently in some vinaigrette for a tasty alternative to plain veg.
This is very handy thing to do as we are now in the summer months, a hard-boiled egg is a great way to add flavour and protein to even the simplest of salads, or for making egg salad for sandwiches or egg mayonnaise.
Fill a saucepan with enough water to fully submerge the egg but do not put the egg in the water yet. Place the saucepan on the heat and bring to the boil. While the water is coming to the boil get a kitchen timer or use the countdown timer on your mobile phone to set a timer for 8 minutes.
Once the water comes to the boil reduce it to a simmer, use a slotted spoon or spider to lower the egg into the water. If you drop the egg in, there is a good chance that it will crack on the base of the saucepan and you will have to start again. Once the egg is in the water start your countdown timer.
I’ve said 8 minutes as this usually provides a good result for me. However if you are using large eggs you may need a little longer and smaller eggs will need a little less time, but the only way to be certain is trial and error.
While you are waiting fill a large bowl or basin of cold water, the colder the better and as soon as the timer goes, you want to lift the egg out of the saucepan and plunge it directly into the cold water. The idea here is to cool the egg as quick as possible.
This serves two purposes, first, it stops the egg cooking immediately and second it prevents that black ring forming around the yoke of the egg which spoils the look and flavour of your hard-boiled egg.
Once the egg has cooled simply roll it across a hard surface with enough downward pressure to crack the shell. Then just peel off the shell and your hard-boiled egg is ready to use.