Monday, 26 November 2012
Now HERE is a new one! Making a wheat-free pizza crust from cauliflower, egg and cheese. If you are gluten-intolerant or just have a cauli to use up, this is an intriguing idea. You won't get the same texture as a bread crust but it is worth trying. My sister makes a flour-free souffle using pureed cauliflower, so this is on the same lines. First, you have to blitz a raw cauliflower in a food processor until it looks like rice - you can include some of the stalk, too, which is a bonus. Steam the cauli over a little water for about 6 to 8 minutes, then cool. Now, for each 10" base, you need a cup of cooled cauliflower, half a cup of grated cheddar and an egg. Mix together well and season with lots of pepper - you don't need salt because of the cheese. Line a baking sheet with baking parchment, and set the oven to a high 220C. Spread the cauli mix out to a rough 10" circle and spray with a little olive oil (or brush lightly with oil using a pastry brush). Bake for 20 minutes until brown and set. Now top with your favourite pizza toppings (don't go mad, and be stingy with the cheese, given the amount in the crust) and bake again until the topping is done to your liking. Serve asap. This isn't a low-fat option but is a good way to get loads more veg into kids - don't tell them it is cauliflower! Tasty too, and certainly a novelty. I found you can make the base in advance and it reheats really quickly with the toppings on, but it is a bit more fragile than a wheat base, so not easy to pick up in large wedges - hence my advice to not over-load it with toppings.
Sometimes, when it is cold and rainy and you feel under the weather, it HAS to be a stew - or soup - or something in between the two, as this is. Essentially, this is good pork sausages, browned, then braised in herby stock with cannellini beans, carrots and chunks of squash and potato. Lovely served in a big bowl with crusty bread, and under a fiver if you are careful with your shopping - don't skimp on the bangers, though, they should be the best quality you can afford. For 4, take a pack of 6 or 8 bangers, halving them if you like, and brown a little in a tablespoon of olive oil in a casserole or ovenproof pot. Remove, then add an onion, chopped, 2 cloves of garlic, a bay leaf, a sprig of thyme, a sprig of rosemary, a large potato, cut into chunks (peel if you like), a couple of carrots, also cut into chunks and a wedge of pumpkin or squash of similar quantity to the potato and carrots, peeled and cut into chunks. Stir this all together in the fat in the pan. Whilst this is happening, dissolve a chicken stock cube in a pint of boiling water with a tablespoon of tomato puree and a good splosh of Worcesterrrrrshire Sauce and pour over the veg. Bring to the boil, then tip in a tin of drained cannellini beans (or any other tinned bean of preference, rinsed too) and then place the bangers back on top. Cover, and bake in the oven for about 45 minutes or so until the veg is soft and the liquid has reduced a little - a temperature of about 180C should do nicely. Sprinkle over some chopped fresh parsley and dish up the soupy beany stew with thick hunks of crusty bread to dip into the herby broth. Then go back to bed and feel sorry for yourself, albeit on a full tum. That's what I did.
Saturday, 24 November 2012
Sunday, 18 November 2012
Bojon Gourmet blog. A really interesting flavour, sweet, honeyed but with a hint of tannin from the fruit - if you like pumpkin pie, you'll like this one, an early nod to Thanksgiving.