richardglover.co.uk

Geek, part-time cyclist, ecoist, bad photographer, vegetarian. I fiddle with WordPress and Edu Tech.

Category: Food (page 2 of 4)

Celeriac and carrot soup recipe

Picked a bag of veg up from the farmers’ market for £1.50 and it made enough soup for a week. It’s easy to make and will keep in the freezer.

Ingredients

40g of unsalted butter (Recipe could easily be made vegan by substituting the butter for olive oil or vegan spread)

2 celeriac, peeled and chopped

4 large carrots, peeled and chopped

4 medium sized potatoes, peeled and chopped

2 medium onions, peeled and chopped

1 litre of hot vegetable stock (I used 2 Knorr stock pots)

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

In a large pan, melt the butter then add the onion, carrots and celeriac.

Stir to cover the veg in some butter, put a lid on the pan and cook over a gentle heat for 10 minutes stirring occasionally.

Add the potatoes and stock, make sure the stock covers all the veg.

Season with freshly ground pepper and a little salt, remember there’s probably already salt in the stock so don’t overdo it!

Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes or until the veg is cooked.

With a stick blender, purée the soup leaving some lumpy veg.

Serve in hot bowls with a chunky wedge of bread!

Penne pasta with bechamel, broccoli and peas recipe

Left over béchamel sauce and some broccoli in the bottom of the fridge, throw it in a pan with some other stuff, quick food!

Ingredients – Serves 4

300g whole wheat penne pasta

680ml of béchamel sauce

1 head of broccoli, washed and cut into bite size chunks

A hand full of frozen peas

Freshly ground black pepper

As much vegetarian Parmesan cheese as you have to hand, grated

Method

Steam the broccoli for about 20 minutes.

Whilst that’s going on, pour some boiling water in to a large pan and add the pasta, cook for around 12 minutes or until it’s done!

Drain the pasta and add it back to the empty pan.

Add the béchamel sauce and heat through.

Throw in a hand full of frozen peas and cook for a few minutes.

Twist in some black pepper.

Add the Parmesan and broccoli and stir in gently.

Serve up!

Roasted butternut squash with spicy lentils

This recipe makes a lot of the lentils, you could add more squash or keep the leftovers and do something else with them, I had mine for lunch the next day! It could also be very easily made vegan by not using the butter!

Roasted butternut squash with spicy lentils

Ingredients

Olive oil

A little butter

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

2 cloves of garlic, crushed through a press

1 large onion, diced

1 ½ tablespoons of curry powder (mild, hot, whatever you like) or garam masala

1 litre of vegetable stock

1 ½ cups of dried red split lentils, rinsed and drained

1 can of chopped tomatoes

1 large butternut squash

Method

Heat the oven to 180C (I’ve got a fan oven).

Peel and quarter the butternut squash.

Place in a baking dish and drizzle over a little olive oil.

Dot a little butter on the squash pieces and season with salt and pepper.

Roast in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour or until the squash is tender and has turned brown in places.

Whilst the squash is in the oven add a little olive oil to a pan and add the onion.

Sauté the onion for a few minutes over a medium heat and add the garlic.

Cook for a few minutes more and add the curry powder, stir to combine and add half of the vegetable stock.

Add the lentils, stir and cover.

Keep checking to make sure the lentils haven’t taken on all of the stock, top up with some of the left over stock if needed.

When the lentils are almost cooked add the chopped tomatoes and stir to combine it all.

Your squash should be done by now! You did keep checking on it didn’t you?

Transfer the squash to some bowls and spoon over the lovely hot spicy lentil mix.

Enjoy!

Cannellini bean, artichoke and goat’s cheese salad recipe

I suppose it should be cannellini bean, artichoke, goat’s cheese, red onion and tomato salad really but that was a bit too long!

Cannellini bean, artichoke and goat’s cheese salad

Ingredients – Serves 3

Olive oil

½ teaspoon of English mustard

A pinch of sugar

1 red onion, thinly sliced

200g cherry tomatoes, halved

150g chargrilled artichoke hearts cut into pieces

400g tin of cannellini beans. drained

Juice of half a lemon

Your favourite salad leaves (I used spinach, rocket and watercress)

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

150g of goat’s cheese

Method

In large bowl whisk together 3 tablespoons of olive oil, the lemon juice, the English mustard, a pinch of sugar and some salt and pepper.

Add the red onion to the dressing along with the cannellini beans, artichoke hearts, cherry tomatoes and give it all a stir.

Serve on top of a large handful of salad leaves with a generous helping of crumbled goat’s cheese.

 

Espresso, chocolate and hazelnut shortbread recipe

I don’t think you can really go wrong when you’re cooking with coffee, but when you add copious amounts of butter, chocolate and sugar it just gets even better!

Ingredients – Makes about 20

30ml of freshly made espresso (or a teaspoon of good instant coffee dissolved in 2 tablespoons of boiling water)

250g of unsalted butter at room temperature cut up into chunks

125g of icing sugar

A small amount of caster sugar to sprinkle on top of the cooked shortbread

½ teaspoon of vanilla extract (Use real extract not “vanilla flavouring”)

300g of plain flour

200g bar of cold whole hazelnut chocolate chopped into small pieces (or just get some chocolate and add some chopped hazelnuts)

Method

Get your espresso ready, whilst you’re at it why not just make yourself a nice coffee to drink anyway?

Place the butter and icing sugar in a mixing bowl and beat for 3 or 4 minutes on a medium speed until smooth.

Add the vanilla extract and espresso, turn the mixer speed down to low and add the flour.

As soon as the flour has been incorporated into the mixture turn off the mixer.

Add the chopped chocolate with hazelnuts and fold in with a spatula.

Resist the temptation to eat the mixture right now, although it is pretty tasty at this stage!

Line a half inch deep baking tray with cling film, you might want to use a little butter to stick the cling film to the tray.

Spoon the mixture onto the tray and either flatten with a spatula or a rolling pin.

Cover the tray of shortbread with more cling film and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Heat your oven to 160C (I’ve got a fan oven).

Remove the shortbread from the fridge, turn out onto a board and discard the cling film.

Cut up into 2 inch squares and place onto a baking tray lined with baking paper.

Bake in the centre of the oven for 18-20 minutes, you don’t want to brown the shortbread so keep an eye on it.

Remove from the oven and place on a rack, dust with a little caster sugar and allow to cool (really, they’re hot, give them at least a minute!).

Nom!

Butternut squash gratin recipe

I made this up so that I had something quick to reheat and eat the next day, the recipe might not be exactly how I made it! The breadcrumbs were a prize for coming joint first in a pumpkin carving competition at a Halloween party I went to 😀 I suppose you could even use pumpkin but the ones in the shops right now aren’t too tasty!

Ingredients

1KG butternut squash, peeled and diced into chunks

1 large onion, peeled and chopped

2 cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced

Olive oil

1 free range egg

¼ tablespoon of salt

Freshly ground black pepper

5 tablespoons of mayonnaise

100g of vegetarian extra mature cheddar cheese

100g of vegetarian Parmesan style cheese

100g of breadcrumbs

Method

Preheat your oven to 180C (I’ve got a fan oven).

Place the butternut squash in a pan and cover with boiling water, place a lid on the pan and boil for around 10 minutes. You want the squash to still be a little firm.

Whilst the squash is cooking add a little olive oil to a pan and throw in the onion and garlic, sauté until soft.

Check the squash, if it’s done, drain it and set to one side.

Once your onion is done, take it off the heat and let it cool a little.

In a bowl, beat the egg and add the salt, a twist of black pepper and mayonnaise, half the cheddar, half the Parmesan, onions and most of the breadcrumbs (save a small amount to go on top at the end). Stir the mixture together and gently fold in the butternut squash without breaking it up.

Pour the mixture into an ovenproof dish, mix together the remaining cheeses and breadcrumbs and sprinkle on top.

Bake in the oven for around 1 hour, until the cheese on top has melted and is golden brown.

I made this in advance, only baked it for half an hour, removed it from the oven, allowed it to cool, covered it and put it in the fridge overnight. The next day I reheated it for 30 minutes at 180C.

Please Mars, just tell me!

“You can’t eat them.”

“What?”

“You can’t eat them.”

“Why the fuck not, they’re only M&M’s.”

“They’re not suitable for vegetarians.”

“Oh yeah, peanut M&M’s, chocolate, peanuts, horse lips, says it right there on the ingredients list.”

The conversation didn’t quite go like that but as it turns out peanut M&M’s aren’t suitable for vegetarians, possibly to do with animal rennet used in the production of the whey…

So I thought, what else can’t I eat, sometimes it’s confusing and annoying having to read through all of the ingredients and make a choice. What if there’s nothing obvious in the ingredients that would point to it not being suitable for vegetarians? So I’ve found myself more and more just avoiding anything that doesn’t say it’s suitable.

I had a look on the Mars Nutrition website, it helpfully lists nutritional information and the ingredients of products, but nothing about suitability for vegetarians.

Contact Us“, yes please! So I did.

Hi, do you have an up to date list of your confectionery products that are NOT suitable for vegetarians?

It would be very helpful if you also labelled your products that weren’t suitable for vegetarians.

Cheers

Rich

A week or so went by and then today I got a reply from the very helpful Paula Ricketts who works on the Consumer Care Team at Mars…

Dear Richard

Thank you for contacting us about a list of products that are not suitable for vegetarians.

Unfortunately, we’re not currently able to confirm the suitability of individual products or provide you with a list.

Once again, thank you for contacting Mars.

Yours sincerely

Paula Ricketts
Consumer Care Team
0845 045 0042

So, I’m sat open mouthed, do they not know, is it a closely guarded secret? Tap, tap, tap I composed my reply…

Thank you Paula, for your in depth and expedient reply.

I am however a little confused with your reply, do you not know which products are suitable for vegetarians or do you just not want to tell me?

I look forward to your reply!

Kind regards,
Rich

So, only time will tell if Mars will admit to not knowing, not wanting to tell me or just not being bothered!

Incidentally, Cadbury have a very helpful website which lists everything you need to know about their products, if they’re vegetarian, vegan, kosher, etc. Have a look!

http://nutrition.cadbury.co.uk

UPDATE – 2/11/11

I got another reply from Mars…

At Mars, we’re always trying to provide our consumers with the biggest choice possible of chocolate products. We’re making great progress in making sure our products are suitable for vegetarians where possible.

Unfortunately, we’re not currently able to confirm the suitability of individual products or provide you with a list, but most of products are suitable and have ‘Suitable for vegetarians’ on the back of the pack. This labelling ensures that these products are in line with the FSA’s guidance on vegetarian labelling.

As always, our advice would be to make sure you check the packaging so you can guarantee the suitability for your diet. If the product does NOT say ‘Suitable for vegetarians’, we would suggest that you avoid it.

I can only guess that sometimes they have to make changes to the way they manufacture their products. Sometimes they can do it without using ingredients dirrived from animals, sometimes they can’t and they have to change the label based on this.

It’s a shame that the FSA doesn’t issue very useful guidelines on this, wouldn’t it be easier for everything to just state the suitability either way instead of the consumer having to guess or go without because there just isn’t a simple label. I noticed that on the label for some Divine chocolate I was looking at it didn’t say it was suitable for vegeterians but later when I checked on their website it said it was, but they missed the sale.

Pasta with chili, garlic, ginger and tomatoes recipe

You’ll make sex noises throughout the whole time you’re eating this, I guarantee it! It’s quick to make and it’s got the got the right combination of heat from the chili & garlic and sweetness from the tomatoes.

Ingredients

150g of your favourite pasta

1 tin of chopped tomatoes

1 red chili, finely chopped

4 cloves of garlic, minced

A piece of ginger bigger than a big thumb, peeled and grated

125g of baby plum tomatoes, quartered

Olive oil

Freshly ground black pepper

Method

Bring a pan of water to the boil and get your pasta in there cooking away

In another pan, over a medium heat add a little olive oil and add the plum tomatoes, give them a stir and mush them up a bit. Cook for a few minutes.

Add the garlic, chili, ginger and chopped tomatoes. Add a twist of black pepper and give it all a good stir.

Let it bubble away whilst the pasta finishes cooking but don’t let it get too dry.

Drain the pasta and add it to the tomato sauce.

Enjoy!

Vegetarian Haggis recipe

Can you call vegetarian haggis, haggis? Either way, I had some in Edinburgh when I was there last week and it was so tasty I decided to make it myself. Sorry for listing some of the measurements in cups, that’s how I got the recipe and I didn’t think to weigh out the ingredients once I’d measured them.

Ingredients

Olive oil

1 carrot, peeled and finely diced

1/4 of a peeled swede, finely diced

1 onion, peeled and finely diced

6 mushrooms, finely diced

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 cup of whole mixed nuts, hazelnuts, almonds and walnuts

1/3 of a cup of red lentils

600ml of vegetable stock

1/2 cup of cooked kidney beans

1 teaspoon of dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon of dried rosemary

1/4 teaspoon of ground cayenne pepper

1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground cinammon

Freshly ground black papper

1 tablespoon of soy sauce

1 and 1/2 cups of pinhead oatmeal

The juice of half a lemon

Method

Heat the oven to 170C.

Spread the mixed nuts out on a baking tray and roast in the oven for 10 minutes, don’t over-roast.

Let the nuts cool and finely chop them, I put them in the chopper I got with a stick blender.

Add a little olive oil to a large pan and add the onion, sauté for 5 minutes.

Season with some black pepper, don’t add too much right now, we’re going to add more later.

Add the carrot, swede, mushrooms and garlic and sauté for another 5 minutes.

Add the lentils, 450ml of the stock and stir.

Add the kidney beans to the remaining 150ml of stock and give them a little mash, don’t break them up too much.

Add the nuts, soy sauce, herbs and spices to the stock, stir it all together and add it to the vegetables. Cook for 5 minutes.

Add some more black pepper, keep tasting so you don’t over do it but you want to be fairly heavy handed with the amount of pepper you put in for a more authentic taste.

Add the pinhead oatmeal and cook for another 5 minutes. Add a little water of it gets too dry, the mixture should end up moist but not runny.

Add the lemon juice and stir it in.

Spoon the mixture into two lightly greased loaf tins.

Bake for 30 minutes at 190C.

Serve with mashed neeps and tatties!

Leek and cheese pie recipe

Fairly quick and cheap to make, there’s enough for 6!

Ingredients

1kg leeks, washed and chopped into inch long pieces

2 free range eggs

100g of extra mature cheddar cheese, grated

150ml single cream

Freshly ground black pepper

Pastry, puff, shortcrust, whatever you like. Make your own or buy the ready rolled stuff.

Method

Bring a large pan of water to the boil and add the leeks to it, simmer for around 10 minutes until the leeks are just cooked.

In a large bowl add the eggs, cream, cheese and as much black pepper as you like, give it all a stir to mix in the eggs.

Pre-heat your oven to 180C.

Once the leeks are cooked, drain them in a colander and press them lightly to remove any excess water.

Add them to the eggy, cheesy, creamy mixture and give it all a stir.

Pour the mixture into a pie dish and cover with pastry, place in the oven for around 20 minutes.

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