vegetarian

Another slice of V Pud!

I love using V Pud which is made by the Real Lancashire Black Pudding Company. I was pleased to be asked to work on some more recipes for their vegetarian and vegan black pudding – the V Pud. http://www.reallancashireblackpuddings.co.uk/vpud/

V Pud has an interesting taste and a lovely crumbly texture with a delicate blend of herbs and spices. I already use V Pud for my favourite Cannelini Bean dish and it goes really well with my spelt risotto. For recipes see http://www.reallancashireblackpuddings.co.uk/recipes/vegetarian-black-pudding-with-cannelini-beans/#.VznXvmB0xAg

I took my inspiration for this dish from ingredients eaten whilst growing up. I grew up in a part of Wolverhampton called Wednesfield which is part of the industrial Black Country. My family had a lock making business, my Dad and Uncle made specialist keys by hand. These traditional methods can be learnt about now through visiting the Lock museum which is part of the Black Country Museum. The museum is a great place to visit and on a recent trip I was reminded of the old Black Country dish, Groaty Pudding.

It’s lovely to share this recipe as part of National Vegetarian Week 2016 which is an opportunity to share food, stories and traditions. http://www.nationalvegetarianweek.org/

V Pud Groaty Pudding

groaty pudding 3

Groaty Pudding is a traditional Black Country dish. It’s similar to a risotto. The flavour of V Pud works well with this. If you can’t get oat groats, try making it with pearl barley. I got my oat groats from our local health food shop, The Bran Tub in Malvern.

Serves 2

Ready in 30 minutes

100g V Pud, sliced
1 leek, sliced
150g oat groats
1 tbsp vegetable bouillon powder
1 litre of water
salt and black pepper to taste
extra virgin rapeseed oil
chopped chives to garnish

Place the oats groats in a saucepan with the stock, then bring to the boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for about 45 minutes until the groats are cooked.

Season with salt and pepper.

Heat a pan, then add the leeks and cook in their washing water for a couple of minutes. Add some extra virgin rapeseed oil to finish cooking. Add to the groats mixture.

Heat some extra virgin rapeseed oil in a clean pan. Test to see if the oil is hot, and add the slices of V Pud. Fry until crispy on both sides.

Place on top of the cooked leeks and groats. Garnish with chopped chives.

V Pud also goes really well with tomatoes; the following two recipes are great for warm summer days.

Bulgur Wheat and Sun Dried Tomato Salad with V Pud

A quick tasty dish – perfect for packed lunch.

 bulgur wheat salad

Serves one

Ready in 15 minutes

2 spring onions finely chopped
1 clove crushed garlic (optional)
25g sun dried tomatoes, sliced
small handful of olives
50g chopped fresh herbs
75g bulgur wheat
130ml boiling water (approx)
black pepper and salt to taste
extra virgin olive oil
75g V Pud, chopped
olive oil for frying

Rehydrate the bulgur wheat by placing in a bowl and covering with boiling water. Cover with a plate and leave to stand for about ten minutes.  Fluff up with a fork.

Add the spring onions, garlic, sun dried tomatoes, and olives to the bulgur wheat. Mix in some chopped fresh herbs. Add a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and season well.

Heat some olive oil in a small frying pan. When the oil is hot, add some chopped V Pud and cook on both sides.

V Pud Summer Vegetables with Pancakes

A speedy summer supper. The pancakes can be made in advance.

summer veg and pancakes

Serves 2

Ready in 30 minutes

 For the pancakes

100g buckwheat flour
300ml soya milk (unsweetened)
pinch salt
sunflower oil for frying

Place ingredients in a blender jug and blend. Place in fridge. Leave to stand for at least 20 minutes.

Heat oil in crepe/frying pan, add a ladleful of pancake mixture, and cook on both sides. Keep warm.  Add more oil as needed, to cook remainder of pancakes. This amount of batter should make 6 small pancakes.

 For the filling

3 ripe tomatoes
1 courgette
2 cloves garlic, sliced
100g V Pud, sliced
olive oil
handful fresh rocket
handful fresh basil
salt and pepper to taste

Fry or grill some sliced tomatoes, courgettes and garlic. Place in oven to keep warm. Add a little more oil to the pan. When hot add the slices and V Pud and fry on both sides.

Fill the pancakes with the V Pud and vegetable mixture. Season to taste. Serve garnished with rocket and basil.

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New Year new recipe!

As we settle into 2016 resolutions can seem hard to keep. I like to keep it simple and just make small changes. I am making the effort to go up into the hills more often – the views are amazing and it’s great to get a blast of fresh air.

 

It’s good to try something different with food by using store cupboard ingredients. Chick Peas are a great favourite of mine.

 

They have a great nutty flavour. They are a good source of protein. I love using them. Chick peas are used in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine where they are used to make hummus and falafel. They are used in Indian Cookery where they are ground to make gram flour which is used to make bhajis and pakora.

Chickpeas01

Chick Pea and Spinach Curry

A quick healthy supper for a cold evening

Serves 4

Ready in 20 minutes

2 large onions, chopped

2 cloves garlic crushed

1 red chilli crushed

½ tsp ground turmeric

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp ground coriander

2 tsp garam masala

large pinch of salt

1 tin of chopped tomatoes

1 tin chick peas

large handful of fresh or frozen spinach

extra virgin rapeseed oil

 

Heat oil in a pan, sauté the onion and garlic in oil, add the chilli and spices and salt and cook for two minutes, stirring constantly.

Add the cooked chick peas, tomatoes, spinach and a little water if needed.

Bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer for at least 10 minutes.

 

Serve with rice or chapatti bread.

 

Cooking Tip

 

When cooking dried chick peas it’s worth cooking a large amount. Soak in a large saucepan full overnight and cook for two hours. When cool place in freezer bags or tubs and store in the freezer until needed.

If using tinned chick peas remember to rinse then in plenty of fresh water before using.

An Abundance of Cherries

I have a morello cherry tree in my garden which has produced a bumper crop of cherries this year. I have filled bowl after bowl of deep red cherries.

Morello Cherries

Morello cherries are sour and work best when cooked. The hard work is in the pitting, I have a cherry pitter but this still takes a while.

 Lots of this year’s crop has gone into the freezer. I have made soft conserve using the cherries. This works well with rich chocolate cake such as Black Forest Gateau.

jam

Morello cherries are delicious when preserved in brandy or kirsch. Spoon the cherries into clear preserving jars and top with sugar and the brandy. As a general guide use one third sugar to two thirds alcohol to fruit. Label and place in a dark cupboard for three to four months. This makes a lovely treat accompanied with chocolate brownies and ice cream. I’ve put a couple of smaller jars away to give as Christmas presents.

cherries and sugar           cherries in jars

I have also experimented and put a jar of cherry brandy away – the main attraction for this being the cherries didn’t need to be pitted! Let’s hope it works out.

I’m also looking forward to sampling some local eating cherries this year.

Spring Greens!

I love Spring – so many shades of green! The morning light has been amazing, highlighting the many shades of green as the blossom fades!  It’s been good getting out for walks. I always enjoy collecting wild garlic and it’s been good sharing it at cookery demonstrations this Spring.

wild garlic

It works well blended with white beans to make a delicious pate.

Wild Garlic Pate                                                                                

  • 1 tin white beans e.g. butter, cannelini
  • handful of wild garlic (approx25g)
  • 1 tbsp olive/rapeseed oil
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • salt and pepper (to taste)

Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend.

Season, more lemon juice could be added to taste. A small amount of water may be added to achieve a dip-like consistency.

I’m also enjoying asparagus season, it’s lovely to make use of this local ingredient while it’s here. Here’s a recipe which has gone down well at local food festivals.

Our Lizzy beans

Fried Butterbeans with asparagus

 2 cloves garlic, crushed

1 tin butter beans

zest of 1 lemon

1 red chilli finely chopped

handful of sliced asparagus

salt and pepper

handful chopped parsley

2 tbsp extra virgin rapeseed oil

Put pan on the heat, add the asparagus with a small amount of water.

When the water has absorbed add some oil. Add the butter beans and fry for a few moments.

Add the garlic, chilli and lemon zest and cook for two minutes more.

Remove from heat, season to taste and sprinkle with chopped parsley to serve.

 Serve with flatbread or cous cous. Broccoli spears work well when asparagus goes out of season.

It’s been great being part of Asparafest in Evesham this year, celebrating asparagus and all things green!

Gus 2

 

Amazing Autumn Squashes

I love the colours of autumn; these are shown in the amazing variety of squash which is harvested at this time of year.

I was fortunate to meet Hayley and Jim from Hotchpotch Organics which is based at Elmney Castle near Pershore. http://www.hotchpotchorganics.co.uk/ they grow a fabulous selection of squash, it was a great opportunity to try out varieties that I had never used before.

Celebration, sweet Dumpling, Onion, Delicata, Buttercup

Celebration, sweet Dumpling, Onion, Delicata, Buttercup

My favourites were:
Delicata oblong-shaped squash has a golden flesh with a nutty flavour and creamy smooth texture. Buttercup is large and dark green in colour. It has a dry, flaky, almost potato-like flesh that bakes and roasts really well.

During the last weekend of September it was the Malvern Autumn Show at the Three Counties Showground. I demonstrated on the Wot’s Cooking stage.

Malvern Autumn Show Our Lizzy on the Wot's Cooking Stage

Malvern Autumn Show Our Lizzy on the Wot’s Cooking Stage

One of the dishes I made was a risotto using spelt and onion squash the recipe for this in on my website. http://www.ourlizzy.com/butternut-squash-risotto.htm

I run a course dedicated to autumn squashes. We make a selection of soups, casseroles and stuffing’s.

Hope you enjoy this recipe; it works well with Sweet Dumpling or Delicata.

Stuffed Squash

Wash and cut the squash lengthways. Scoop out the seeds and membrane using a spoon, trim with a small knife if needed.

  • ½ onion finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves crushed
  • 1 roasted red pepper chopped
  • 1 tin flageolet beans
  • ½ tin chopped tomatoes/passata
  • 1 tsp tomato puree
  • ½ tsp Italian dried herbs
  • salt and pepper
  • olive oil

Rinse and drain the flageolet beans.

Heat oil and sauté the onion until soft then add the garlic, peppers and beans. Sauté until the beans are turning golden. Add the tomatoes and stir well – you may want to add some tomato puree if needed.

Add the mixed herbs and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Spoon the filling into the squash. Cover with foil and bake at 200°/Gas 6 for 30 minutes. Remove the foil drizzle with oil and bake for 15 minutes more.
end result

Watch me make Vegetable Tempura

Here’s really local dish I’ve used summer vegetables and Holywell Malvern Spring Water. Use the water straight from the fridge to ensure it is ice cold.

Holywell Malvern Spring Water is bottled water which dates back to1622. It is the original source of Malvern Water It is famous for containing nothing at all! http://holywellmalvernspringwater.co.uk/

Watch me make this recipe here! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJxVUL_zkfc

Our Lizzy’s Vegetable Tempura

  • 100g plain flour
  • 50g corn flour
  • large pinch of salt
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 200ml ice cold sparkling Holywell Malvern Spring Water
  • selection of vegetables
  • rapeseed oil for shallow frying

Wash and chop a selection of vegetables into large bite sized pieces.

Sift the plain flour, corn flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Pour in the sparkling water and whisk well to produce a light batter.

Place a handful of vegetables in the batter.

Heat some oil in a shallow pan or wok. When the oil is hot carefully add the first vegetable piece taking care that the oil does not spit. Add four more pieces and cook until golden on one side.

Carefully turn with a slotted spoon. Remove when golden and drain on kitchen paper.

Continue cooking the vegetables in batches. Serve with a chilli dipping sauce.

Cooking with local food

I love living in Malvern there are some great places to shop for food, and I love having the opportunity to take part in food festivals.
food_festival_logo_bg
The Great Malvern Food Festival was on Bank Holiday Monday. It was held in the grounds of Great Malvern Priory. Boffy Markets featured some of the in best local food and drink.

I ran a hands on cookery workshop, ‘Spice up Your Veg Box,’ which gave people a taster of my vegetarian cookery classes. Participants learnt how to make the most of seasonal vegetables from Skylark Organic boxes. http://www.skylarkorganics.co.uk We made my quick and easy Spicy Chick Pea and a simple bulgur wheat salad.

I also gave a cookery demonstration the Wot’s Cooking Stage.

I demonstrated how to cook polenta. When cubed, it works really well in salads instead of bread. I buy my polenta at The Bran Tub in Malvern, which specialises in allergy foods. I flavoured the polenta with sundried tomatoes from The Great Malvern Deli. They always have a really good selection of locally produced products.

I made a smoky bean and mushroom topping for the polenta. This was cooked in my favourite golden extra virgin rapeseed oil from Croome Classics http://www.croomeclassics.co.uk For flavour I used double smoked paprika from Wright’s Culinary delights http://www.wrightsdirect.com
who are based in Colwall. They do a really good selection of salts and spices. Other favourites are the wild garlic salt and the Mexican Fiesta Dip.

I served this with a selection of salad leaves from my garden. I have a selection of plants from Cottage Herbery http://www.thecottageherbery.co.uk It’s good to be able to go out into the garden and snip a few leaves of chicory and sorrel, rocket and wild garlic. I finished this with lightly steamed asparagus and a raspberry vinegar dressing.
cookery theatreveg boxworkshopIMG_20140526_140822297