Tag Archives: home-grown

Summer greens – make me feel fine

19 Jul

Seven kinds of greens, all picked from my veg patch, boiled for a minute and added to pasta with three cloves of garlic gently sizzled in oil, a spoonful of sour cream and lots of black pepper. Greens: purple mange tout, sugar snaps, ruby and golden chard, spinach, redshank and Fat Hen (the last two are wild veg, aka weeds, crammed with far more vitamins and minerals than any cultivated veg. Simple, cheap (some free), very easy, utterly delicious.

Wild, organic greens

Seven kinds of wild and home-grown organic veg, with pasta, garlic, sour cream and black pepper.

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DIY fruit fondue

24 May
Fruit Platter

Fruit Platter (Photo credit: Kenski1970)

My friends love a bit of DIY nosh at the party table. This is an easy pudding to put together, and your guests take the components and assemble the finished product to their own specifications. This has a touch of the mud pie about it, with the subsequent licking of fingers and scraping of plates. If there’s anything left on the serving plate – er, I’ll eat it.

Ingredients

Fruit in season, preferably home-grown, from the WI or your local greengrocer/market stall. Bananas, apples, pears, strawberries, melon, grapes, cherries, plums – whatever’s available and delicious.

Mixed nuts (not salted or roasted) chopped fine

Chocolate bars (half per person): good dark chocolate and/or milk chocolate, whatever you like best.

Milk (two tablespoons per person – ish)

First, toast the nuts. In a hot oven, put a baking sheet with the mixed chopped nuts spread out in a single layer. No oil, no salt, no sugar, just the nuts. Let them toast for 10 mins, then check to see how they’re doing. They can suddenly burn, so don’t leave them too long. Lightly toasted is fine – a bit of colour is enough to get that lovely flavour. When they’re done, let them cool, then tip them into a bowl and put them aside.

Next, chop the fruit to bite-size (about 2cm cubes) pieces; turn the fruit in the juice of an orange to keep it from going brown.

Last, break up the chocolate and put it in a non-stick pan with the milk. Heat it gently, stirring every few seconds; the milk will stop the chocolate from burning and going all grainy, and it will all suddenly thicken, at which point take it off the heat and pour into individual dishes (ramekins are ideal).

To serve, put a little dish of chocolate on each plate, and put the bowl of nuts in the middle of the fruit on a platter or two, depending on numbers. Each guest has a fork or a skewer: they spear a bit of fruit, dip it into the chocolate, then into the nuts, then into their mouths. Repeat till the fruit’s gone, then run finger round chocolate dish and lick finger. Mmmm.