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Soda bread

Winter Pumpkin soup, spiced lentil cake and soda bread

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Spiced duck leg salad, orange and pomegranate

Spiced duck leg salad, orange and pomegranate

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Bubble and squeak, asparagus and poached egg

Bubble and squeak, asparagus and poached egg

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Soda bread

Winter Pumpkin soup, spiced lentil cake and soda bread

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INGREDIENTS

For the soup:

500g pumpkin – peeled, seeded and diced in to 1 inch cubes

1 large shallot - peeled and sliced

200g unsalted butter - diced

5g table salt

10g parmesan - grated

600ml chicken or vegetable stock

Crème fraiche – to serve

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For the soda bread

250g bread flour

5g salt

7g bicarbonate of soda

50g sunflower seeds

55g feta cheese – cut into cubes

250ml buttermilk

5g fresh mint - chopped

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For the spiced lentils

100g cooked puy lentils

50g red onion finely chopped

60ml soy sauce

60ml balsamic vinegar

40ml tomato sauce (ketchup)

20ml sweet chilli sauce

15g chopped pickled ginger

Pinch ground cumin

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For the cake

340g spiced lentils (the above recipe makes this)

100g diced onion

160g flat mushrooms diced small

2g coriander seeds (about 15 seeds)

350g pumpkin seeds

20g sesame seeds

40g pine nuts

30g chopped tarragon

80g panko breadcrumbs

METHOD

We love the smooth velvety texture of this soup, and for an everyday recipe the soup alone is delicious.  However, if serving for an occasion making the soda bread and spiced lentil cake too is well worth the effort.

For the soup:

1.  Over a medium heat in a large heavy bottomed pan soften the shallot and the diced pumpkin with the butter 

2.  Once softened add the salt and stock, bring to a simmer

3.  Place a lid on the pan and gently simmer for 10 to 15 minutes or until the pumpkin is cooked through

4.  Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly

5.  Add the grated parmesan and mix well

6.  Blend the soup until smooth in a liquidiser

7.  Check for seasoning and add a little more salt if you like

8.  If serving alone, serve with crème fraiche and a twist of black pepper (or omit the crème fraiche if serving with spiced lentil cake)

Try roasting your pumpkin seeds, they make a great crunchy addition to soups, salads, casseroles and curries. Alternatively put them raw on your bird table.

For the soda bread:

1.  Place the flour, salt and bicarbonate of soda into the bowl and rub together

2.  Add the seeds and cheese and stir in, then add the buttermilk and mint and fold together gently until all the dry flour is incorporated

3.  Once it is all together, take out of the bowl and roll it around in some flour to make it easier to handle

4.  Place on to a grease proof tray and put 2 cuts on top 2cm deep to make a cross and place into the oven as soon as it is finished – (this will not require any proving)

 Bake at 240℃ for about 17 minutes

 For the spiced lentils:

1. Cook the onions without colour and when translucent add the cumin and cook out for 5 minutes without burning

2. Add the soy sauce and balsamic and reduce by half

3. Remove from the heat and stir in the cooked lentils and the rest of the ingredients, check the seasoning and allow to cool

For the cakes:

1.  Roast the nuts and seeds in oil until golden brown

2.  Add the onion and mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes

3.  Add the spice lentil mix, panko breadcrumbs and tarragon, mix well

4.  Season and allow to rest for 1 hr to allow the panko breadcrumbs to take on the flavour and tighten the mix

5.  When ready give a good mix again and then weigh into 50g balls and shape

6.  Coat with a little flour, egg and breadcrumbs and then store until required

To finish the cakes for the soup, either deep fry on 180 for 3 minutes until golden or pan fry until golden on both side in a little oil on a moderate heat and place in the oven for 2 minutes at 180℃ to ensure the core temperature is hot.

Spiced duck leg salad, orange and pomegranate

Spiced duck leg salad, orange and pomegranate

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INGREDIENTS

For the duck marinade:

6 duck legs

100g sugar

100g sea salt

6g Chinese 5 - spice powder

½ thinly sliced orange

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To cook the duck legs:

6 cured duck legs, washed for 10 minutes

500g duck fat, or oil - enough to totally submerge the duck legs

2 bay leaves

1 tsp black peppercorns

Parsley to finish

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For the orange dressing:

250g fresh orange juice

5 orange zests

15g caster sugar

50ml white wine vinegar

200ml vegetable or sunflower oil

50ml fresh orange juice to let down if needed

.

To finish:

Salad leaves – your choice, we used rocket

4 figs – quartered

1 orange

1 pomegranate

METHOD

Serves 6:

For the duck marinade:

 1.  Mix all together except the duck legs.

2.  Rub mix all over the duck legs and place into a tray, cover with cling film and keep in the fridge for 8 hours covered.


To cook the duck legs:

1.  Heat oven to 150°C.

2.  Wipe the duck with kitchen paper and pat dry.

3.  Put the duck in a 15cm pan and cover with the oil or duck fat.  Add the bay leaves and peppercorns and place in the oven and cook for about 4 hours with the pan lid on. 

4.  You are looking for the meat to be falling away from the bone if gently pressed with a spoon.

5.  Take out the oil, place on plate and cover with cling film, allow to chill for 30 minutes.

6.  Remove the cling film from the plate and gently pull the thigh bone out, now shred the meat making sure to remove the skin, put onto a plate into the fridge to cool down and firm up.  Meanwhile make the orange dressing (see chef’s tip).


For the orange dressing:

Chef’s tip: This dressing needs to be made enough in advance that it has time to cool before serving and can be made up to 2 weeks in advance and stored in the fridge.

1.   Gently simmer 250g of orange juice, zest and sugar to reduce to approximately 100ml. 

2.   Slowly add the white wine vinegar and oil to the reduced orange juice mix whilst blending with a hand blender until it emulsifies and becomes thicker

3.   If it has become too thick you can add what you need of the additional 50ml of orange juice to loosen the consistency.


To finish:

1.  Place the duck in a pan on a medium heat with some of the dressing and warm. Dress the salad leaves (reserve a little to dress the figs) and place on a board, place the cooked duck meat around, finish with the figs dressed in the dressing, scatter with the chopped orange and pomegranate seeds.  Season to taste.

 


Bubble and squeak, asparagus and poached egg

Bubble and squeak, asparagus and poached egg

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INGREDIENTS

For the Bubble and squeak:

200g plain cooked potato

½ lemon - zest and juice

½ shallot - chopped

5g dill - chopped

80g raw salmon - chopped

80g cooked crab meat

Salt and pepper to taste

To coat:

Plain flour – approximately 100g

2 or 3 Eggs – whisked

Panko breadcrumbs – approximately 100g

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For the Asparagus:

2 bunches of asparagus - depending on bunch sizes

10g Salt

500ml water

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For the poached eggs:

6 fresh free range eggs

600ml water

200ml white wine vinegar

Pinch of salt

METHOD

Serves 6:


Brunch, lunch or supper, you can decide!  We like to add a nice dollop of béarnaise sauce too.

 

For the Bubble and squeak:


1.   Peel and chop the potatoes and cook in salted boiling water, bring to a boil and then turn down to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes

2.   Once the potato is cooked pass into a colander and allow to dry out for 5 minutes in the colander over a bowl

3.   Mash with a masher or ricer and then place into a bowl

4.   Add the rest of the ingredients, lightly mix and form in to desired shapes

5.   Coat with flour, then egg and finally panko breadcrumbs - shape and they are ready to pan or deep fry on 180c for 4 to 6 minutes depending on size


For the Asparagus:


1.   Place the water and salt into a pan and bring to the boil

2.   While you are waiting for the water to the boil, peel the asparagus 

3.   When the water is boiling place the asparagus into the pan and cook for 2 minutes and serve.  Test the asparagus are ready by pinching the tip to ensure it is soft or putting a knife in the root, it should go in easily


For the poached eggs


1.  Bring all the ingredients except the eggs to a boil in a deep small pan

2.  Once boiling put a timer on for 2 minutes 30 seconds and have a bowl of ice water ready (if using)

3.  Now crack the eggs gently one by one into the pan and when the last one goes in, start the timer

4.  The water will stop boiling due to adding the cold eggs, when it comes back to the boil turn it to a steady simmer otherwise the eggs will break up and the pan will boil over

5.  When the timer goes off, remove from heat and get the eggs out, drain on kitchen paper and serve.  Alternatively, you can place in the bowl of ice water, then remove them and store them on a cloth on a tray for up to a day in the fridge 

6.  To reheat, add to a pan of boiling water for 1 minute.