Tuesday, 12 September 2006

Roasted Mushroom with Stilton Crumble

100g Flour
70g Butter
A sprig of Thyme (Optional)
12 Open Cup Mushrooms (those big ones you get in the shops)
200g Stilton without rind (go for about 250g with rind). Try to slice this but it will fall apart, this doesn't matter.
300g Pasta
4 Courgettes
4 Peppers

Start boiling enough water for the pasta. Set the oven to 220 degrees or gas mark 8 I think.

Slice up the courgettes into strips of about half a centermeter thick. Place courgette into a sieve and sprinkle with salt. Place a plate with a weight on top of the courgettes to apply some pressure. Have a bowl under the sieve to catch the drips.

Slice the peppers into similar shapes to the courgettes and fry them or cook them on a griddle if you have one. You can carry on as long as you check the peppers every minute or so and turn them over so they are cooked evenly all over. Take the stalks out of the middle of the mushrooms. You should just be able to pull them out. Place them in a oven proof dish in the oven.

Once the peppers are all cooked place them in a bowl. Rinse the courgettes and then cook them in a similar manner to the peppers. Once again you can carry on doing other things while they cook, as long as you check them ever few minutes and turn them.

Mix the flour with the butter and thyme (if using it) in a blender until they resemble fine bread crumbs. By now the mushrooms should be starting to brown and release juices. If not then sit back with a drink and wait a while. Before taking the mushrooms out of the oven place your pasta in the boiling water and start timing it for the time it says on the packet.

While the pasta and courgettes cook remove the mushrooms from the oven. If they are layered then take the top ones off until you just have one layer. Layer half of the stilton over the mushrooms.
Add the mushrooms you removed and put the rest of the stilton on top. Cover all of this evenly with the flour and butter mixture. Return the mushroom dish to the oven.

Are all the courgettes cooked and the pasta done yet? Wait if they're not.

Once the pasta is done, drain it, drizzle olive oil and freshly ground pepper on it and give it a good stir. Wait until the flour over the mushrooms has browned off nicely (lots of juices should have come out of the mushrooms) and serve everything.

Serves 3-4
Costs about £2.50 per person

Saturday, 3 June 2006

Tomato, Bean and Coffee Stew with Sharp Cous Cous

This recipe is a bit similar to the last one in parts. However it does come out with a very different result, but I think it's equally nice.
2 Tins of Peeled Tomatoes - Prechopped tomatoes work but don't give as good a result
1 Tin Kidney Beans
1 Tin Flageolet Beans
3 Small onions or 2 Large onions
4 Tbsp Olive Oil
6 Cloves of Garlic
4 Cubes of Vegetable Stock
4 Tsps of White Vinegar
2 Tbsp flour
1 Tbsp of Granulated Sugar
200g of Dry Cous Cous
250ml of Water
2 Tsps Cayenne Pepper
750ml Coffee - A mild to medium roast such as Colombian
Serves 4
  1. Peel and chop the onions into small chunks.
  2. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4
  3. Place onions in a medium sized saucepan and gently fry with 2 tbsp of the olive oil.
  4. While the onions are slowly cooking make the coffee.
  5. In a large oven proof casserole break up the 4 stock cubes.
  6. Check the onions aren't burning.
  7. Finely chop the garlic (after peeling it clearly).
  8. Check the onions aren't burning.
  9. Place garlic in the casserole.
  10. Add the still hot coffee to the casserole and mix around until the stock cubes seem to be well dissolved.
  11. Check the onions aren't burning.
  12. Add the tins of tomatoes to the onions and stir
  13. Add 2 tsps of the vinegar and the tbsp of sugar to the tomato and onion mixture
  14. Stir the mixture.
  15. Place Cous cous in a bowl. Add the remaining olive oil and vinegar. Add black pepper to taste and mix it a little.
  16. Add the flour to the mixture of coffee and stock in the casserole. Whisk with a whisk until the flour has all dissolved.
  17. Stir the tomato mixture.
  18. Add the cayenne pepper to the casserole and stir.
  19. Relax and have a drink for 5 minutes while the tomato mixture bubbles away.
  20. Add the tomato mixture and the two tins of beans to the casserole.
  21. Stir well and place the casserole, uncovered, in the oven (on a tray if it looks like it'll overflow)
  22. Wait 45 minutes.
  23. Stir and cover the casserole in the oven.
  24. Turn the oven down to gas mark 4.
  25. Wait 1 hour.
  26. Boil the 250ml of water.
  27. Add boiling water to the cous cous and oil mixture.
  28. Stir cous cous with a fork.
  29. Wait 5 minutes
  30. Stir cous cous with a fork.
  31. Wait 5 minutes.
  32. Serve it all. I'd suggest some bitter salad leaves or lettice to go with it.
  33. Enjoy.

Friday, 2 June 2006

Coffee and Red Lentil soup

I had much debate about if I should post this recipe here or here, but in the end I decided that here would be best.

250g Red Lentils, dry and uncooked
4 Tsps Vegetable Bouillon Powder
600ml Water
2 Tsps Cayenne Pepper
1000ml Coffee - A mild to medium roast such as Colombian
Serves 2
  1. Mix the red Lentils, water, vegetable bouillon and cayenne pepper in a large saucepan. Don 't worry if all the vegetable bouillon doesn't dissolve
  2. Heat up the mixture until it is bubbling vigorously. Stir every so often until the vegetable bouillon has all dissolved.
  3. Keep a medium heat on the uncovered saucepan for about 5 minutes. A large amount of the water should have evaporated.
  4. Add the coffee.
  5. Turn the heat down to low so it is just on a slow simmer.
  6. Wait 35 minutes. Stir once or twice to check it's not sticking and burning on the bottom.
  7. Serve with crusty white bread.