Polynesian fish soup

polynesian fish soup

THIS unusual, distinctive, rich and creamy soup is inspired by the exotic surroundings of the South Pacific. The ingredients and method are pretty straightforward, however, making this dish accessible to everyone – wherever they live!

INGREDIENTS

1kg fish heads and carcasses

2 tsb salt

1 large onion, chopped

1 tsp crushed black pepper

1 red chilli, chopped

1 tbsp lemon juice

500mls coconut milk

1lb (500g) white fish (e.g. cod, haddock, coley) cut into cubes

 

METHOD

Place the heads and carcasses in a large pan with about 1.5 litres of water, the salt, onion, black pepper and chilli and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 20 minutes, skimming if necessary.

Strain this mixture into another large saucepan and adjust the seasoning if required. Stir in the coconut milk, lemon juice, and the fish cubes and reheat over a low heat for about 5 minutes, until the fish is tender and cooked through. Do not overboil.

Ladle the soup into bowls and serve with chilli shavings.

Da Kana, as they say in Fiji! Enjoy your meal!

 

 

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Chicken shish taouk

Shish taouk skewers on grillCHICKEN shish taouk is one of the tastiest chicken kebab-type recipes you’ll find. The name has Turkish origins but it is a common dish in virtually every Middle Eastern country, particularly Lebanon.

It is usually ordered as a sandwich – rolled in a pita bread with Lebanese garlic sauce (their version of aioli) and some gherkins, fries and salad.

Chicken shish taouk can also be served in a more refined manner on a plate with a side of rice and grilled vegetables.

INGREDIENTS

4 skinless boneless chicken breast, cut into strips
Half cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice
6 cloves garlic, crushed
6 tablespoons plain yogurt
6 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine or cider vinegar
1 teaspoon ground white pepper
Half teaspoon ground ginger
Quarter teaspoon ground oregano
Quarter teaspoon ground cumin
Quarter teaspoon ground coriander
Half teaspoon paprika
Half teaspoon of salt (or to taste)
Half teaspoon tomato puree

Pita breads or bread wraps

METHOD

Mix all the ingredients together. Place in a container, cover and allow to marinate in the fridge for at least four hours, or overnight if possible.
Skewer the chicken just before grilling and put the skewers on a medium-hot griddle pan for 12 minutes maximum (until browned – not burned black – in places), turning occasionally.
Remove them from the heat and, using a fork, strip the chicken from the skewers and immediately deposit them directly into a large, warm pot (Pyrex dish or other). Put on the lid tightly and allow to rest for 8-10 minutes – this helps the chicken become more moist (this step is optional).

SERVE

Take the grilled chicken shish tawook and spread equally across bread wraps or inside heated pitas. You can add gherkins (pickles), grilled tomatoes or grilled peppers. Roll up, as in a burrito, and enjoy. Eat as is (like a sandwich), or serve with rice and Greek-style salad (tomatoes, feta cheese, lettuce leaves, cucumber, olive oil and chopped fresh mint).

You can also toast the sandwich in a panini grill for 2-3 minutes.

“Bil-hanā’ wa ash-shifā’” – Enjoy your meal!

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Chicken Milanese

chicken milanese with lemonTHIS chicken Milanese is ridiculously easy to make – plus it’s packed full of flavour and goodness.

All the way from northern Italy, this recipe turns a bland batch of chicken into a zinging, filling, moreish accompaniment to a salad, pasta or a medley of vegetables.

I like to call these chicken nuggets for adults, through children will love them too. This recipe is enough for four people.

INGREDIENTS

2 chicken breasts, skinned
2 cups of plain flour
Salt and black pepper
2 cups of white breadcrumbs
1 teaspoon of dried or fresh tarragon
Half a cup of grated parmesan cheese
Grated rind of half a lemon
2 eggs (beaten)
2 tablespoons of olive oil

PREPARATION

Lay each piece chicken on a chopping board and slice the chicken through the middle (as though slicing open a bread roll) to create two thinner chicken breast shapes. Hit with a meat tenderiser to create an even thickness to the meat.

Place the flour, salt and pepper in a wide, shallow oven dish or large plate. Beat the eggs in a second dish or plate. And in a third dish or plate, combine the breadcrumbs, tarragon, lemon rind and parmesan.

Taking the chicken pieces one at a time, coat with flour, then dip into the beaten egg before dredging in the breadcrumb mixture. Place each piece of breaded chicken on a leaf of tinfoil about the size of a dinner plate. Take another piece of foil, place on top and add your next bath of chicken, so each level is one layer of meat thick. Press down with your hands and place the foil packet in the fridge for an hour or two.

TO COOK

Place the oil in a hot frying pan (not too hot, because you don’t want the breadcrumbs to burn). Remove the meat from the fridge and gently fry two or three at a time, turning once or twice to ensure even browning on both sides. Cook for approximately 4 minutes. Place the now-golden chicken portions in a baking tray and place in an oven at 180C (350F) to keep warm.

Now prepare your pasta, salad, vegetables or whatever you have decided is going to accompany your chicken Milanese.

Serve the chicken Milanese with lemon wedges on the side. Buon appetito!

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Chorizo soup

SoupCHORIZO soup – you don’t have to be a brainbox to know that this recipe has its origins in Spain, so if you need a little bit of culinary sunshine on your dinner table this is the is the perfect recipe.

There is enough of this hearty, spicy, vibrant soup to feed six. Serve with hunks of chunky bread.

INGREDIENTS

100-200g of chorizo, depending on your preference, sliced finely. Tip: don’t forget to skin the chorizo first

500mls chicken or vegetable stock

2 tablespoons of olive oil

1 tin (400mls) of lentils

1 onion, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

150g pearl barley

1 carrot, finely chopped

1 can of chopped tomatoes

1 teaspoon of fresh paprika

Half a teaspoon of cumin seeds, ground to a powder

Salt and pepper

1 handful of parsley to garnish

METHOD

In a pot, heat the oil and lightly fry the carrot, onion and garlic. Add the cumin and parka. Then add the barley, tomatoes and stock. Season with salt and pepper before adding the chorizo. Allow to simmer for 45 minutes – until the barley is soft but retains a bite. If it’s still too firm, simmer for another 5 minutes.

Now drain the lentils and pour them in. Simmer for another 5 minutes. Serve in deep plates or bowls with a sprinkling of parsley on top.

¡Buen apetito!, as they say in Spain!

 

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Roasted asparagus on garlic bread with feta

asparagus spearsSUMMER is synonymous with asparagus, as it has such a short growing season around about the month of June in the UK.

But supermarkets have asparagus available all year round, so this roasted asparagus on garlic bread with feta is perfect for a light summer lunch – whatever the month!

The ingredients below should be enough for three or four people.

INGREDIENTS

24 asparagus spears, trimmed (break or snip off the woody portion at the bottom of the stem) and washed

Handful of chopped fresh mint

Large pinch of sea salt crystals

A good grind of black pepper

2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

200-300g of feta cheese, crumbled by hand

Juice of 1 lemon

1 clove of garlic

METHOD

Toast three or four thick slices of fresh Italian or other artesian loaf

Allow to cool, then scrape the toast with the clove of garlic

Preheat your oven to its highest setting (260C or so, gas mark 9)

In a mixing bowl, toss the asparagus with the salt and 1 tablespoon of the oil, then spread on a baking tray in a single layer

Place in the oven and cook for 15 minutes

Remove and set aside on a large plate

In another bowl, mix the black pepper with the mint and the remaining oil

Pour this mixture over the asparagus

Squeeze the lemon juice on top, together with a few more mint leaves and add the crumbled feta

Pile on top of the bread and serve. Enoy!

 

 

 

 

 

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Kerela King Prawn Curry

Kerela king prawn curry on a white plateTHIS king prawn curry comes from Kerela state in southern India and boasts all the flavours expected of a dish whose origins are in an exotic, tropical location.

Serve with naan breads and rice and wash down down with a cold beer. This Kerela king prawn curry dish serves four to six people.

INGREDIENTS

1 kilo of raw king prawns, or tiger prawns, shell on or shell off.

3 tablespoons of vegetable oil

4 garlic cloves

60g chunk of fresh root ginger

1 onion, peeled and chopped

2 big red chillies, sliced

18 curry leaves

1 teaspoon of ground fenugreek

2 teaspoons of black mustard seeds

2 tablespoons of cold water

400 mlx of coconut milk

1 teaspoon of ground trumeric

Juice of 1 lime

salt and black pepper

6 tablespoons of fresh coriander leaves

1-2 limes cut into wedges for serving

METHOD

De-shell the prawns if necessary (also, defrost if frozen first) and devein them – slice down the back to remove the black digestive tract, which is not nice to eat

Put the onion, chilli, garlic and ginger in a food processor and blitz to a paste

Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat and add the fenugreek, mustard seeds and curry leaves.

Fry for 203 minutes before adding the onion paste mixture

Fry for 2 minutes, then add the turmeric and water, followed by the prawns

Cook for 2 minutes, then add the coconut milk, together with the salt and pepper

Bring to a simmer and cook for a further 2 minutes

Pour in the lime juice

Sprinkle over the coriander and garnish with the lime wedges.

Serve, as I said, with rice and naans and dream of tropical shores and balmy breezes rustling the leaves of nearby jacaranda trees!

Ruchiyode bhakshanam aaswadikkan kazhiyatte, as they say in Malayalam, which is the language of Kerela!

 

 

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Kickin’ butternut and red pepper soup

butternutnut squash, sweet potato and red pepper soup in a white bowl, with bread on the sideDO you like soup? Do you like your food to come with a kick? Well, this kicking’ butternut squash, sweet potato and red pepper soup will hit the spot.

Sweet, tangy and spicy, it’s as enjoyable on a winter’s evening – when you need heated up – as it is on a summer afternoon – when Scotch broth would probably be as appropriate as a duffle coat!

This recipe – which is about as simple as you can get – will feed six. Serve with crusty bread.

INGREDIENTS

1 tablespoon of olive oil;
1 garlic clove, crushed
Small red chilli, finely chopped (seeds removed or left in, depending on your preference)
1 medium-sized butternut squash, peeled and chopped into bite-size pieces
1 large (baking potato size) sweet potato, peeled and chopped
1 red pepper, finely chopped, seeds removed
1 litre of vegetable stock ( 4 stock cubes water with hot) water
Half a teaspoon of smoked paprika

METHOD

Put the oil a large pan over a medium heat and add the garlic, chilli and paprika. Cook for two minutes. Add the butternut squash, sweet potato, red pepper and stock and bring to the boil. Simmer for 20 minutes. Using a hand blender or food processor, blend until smooth and serve sprinkled with smoked paprika and crusty bread

 

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Squid curry

Beach in Goa, IndiaMOST people love a curry – and this recipe for squid curry is a little bit different, in that it is a fish dish. If you’ve never tried a fish curry before, now’s the time to try it out – you’ll not regret it.

Squid can be a bit of a pain to prepare, so take the hard work out of this dish and either ask your fishmonger to do it for you or buy pre-prepared squid from your supermarket.

This recipe – all the way from the shores of tropical Goa in India – serves four and will have you dreaming of sun-kissed beaches overhung by lush palms, gently swaying in salty breezes. Bliss!

INGREDIENTS

500g squid

12 curry leaves

2 tablespoons of vegetable oil

1-2 green chillies, finely chopped (deseeded, if you wish, to make it milder)

1 onion, finely chopped

10-15g of root ginger, grated

5 cloves of garlic, crushed

2 small tomatoes, blended to a smooth liquid

1 teaspoon of garam masala

Half a teaspoon of ground cumin

1 teaspoon of ground fennel seeds

Half a teaspoon of turmeric

salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon of lemon juice

 

METHOD

Slice the squid into quarters, length ways and score in a diamond pattern

If there are any legs, leave them whole

Place the squid in a bowl, together with a quarter teaspoon of the turmeric and a quarter teaspoon of salt

Set it aside

Heat a frying pan and add the oil

Add half the curry leaves and let sizzle for 10 seconds

Add the onion and chillies and sauté until soft

Add garlic and ginger, then the tomatoes and all of the remaining ground spices

Add a tablespoon of water and allow to simmer for 10 minutes

Add 75mls of water and the lemon juice and turn down the heat

In another frying pan heat the remaining oil until it starts to smoke

Add the remaining curry leaves, then the squid

Saute for 40-50 seconds, and add the garam masala

Empty the contents into the first frying pan

 

Serve hot with boiled rice, rice and chutneys.

Ruckar jevaṇ, as they say in Goa!

 

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Pumpkin and thyme soup with garlic

Pumpkin soup with thyme and garlic, in a white bowlSOUP is a wondrous thing. Properly made, it is a veritable meal in of itself – chock full of wholesome ingredients, flavours and goodness to lighten the heaviest heart.

The geographical origin of this pumpkin and thyme soup with garlic is unclear (unlike the dish itself!), as it seems to represent the flavours of Europe and the United States.

Whatever its roots, this dish will have your dining guests or your family raving for weeks after they try it. What’s more, it’s easy to make, keeping true to the spirit of Phil & Dave’s Dishes of Food, as featured on the Talk To Phil & Dave Show on Pulse 98.4 community radio.

This soup will serve eight or more.

 

INGREDIENTS

2 whole bulbs of garlic

4 tablespoons of olive oil

2 tablespoons of fresh thyme (1 tablespoon if using dried thyme)

1 kilo (2.2lbs) of pumpkin

1 tablespoon of plain flour

1 large onion, chopped

1 ounce (25g) of unsalted butter

2 pints (1.3 ltres) of vegetable stock

120g (3 ounces) of creme fraiche

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

 

METHOD

Get two pieces of tinfoil large enough to wrap the garlic bulbs. Before wrapping them up, pour half a tablespoon of olive over each, together with a good pinch of salt and pepper. Place the tinfoil parcels on a large baking tray.

Now peel and deseed the pumpkin and cut into chunks, before placing them on the same baking tray. Again, sprinkle with salt and pepper and half of the thyme.

Place the baking tray in an oven, preheated to 190C  (375F, Gas Mark 5) and roast the pumpkin and garlic parcels for about an hour.

In a large saucepan, melt the butter and add the onions. Cook them for 5 minutes before adding the flour. Then add the stock a little at a time (to ensure the temperature in the pan doesn’t plummet) until it is all in.

Remove the pumpkin and garlic from the oven. Take the garlic bulbs from the tinfoil and set them aside on a chopping board to cool. Add the pumpkin to the saucepan and stir the mixture over a low heat for 10 minutes. Turn the heat off.

When the garlic is cool, break up the bulbs into cloves and, using your hands or the back of a knife, squeeze the cloves to get the soft garlic out. Then put the garlic into the soup mixture along with the remaining thyme and stir well.

Now transfer the soup – in batches, if necessary – to a blender and blitz it until smooth. If your blender is big enough to take all the mixture, then return the soup to its original saucepan. If blending in batches, you’ll have to transfer the smooth liquid to a new saucepan.

Reheat before serving in plates or bowls, topped with a dollop of creme fraiche and accompanied by crusty bread.

Enjoy, as they say in the United States of America!

 

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Chorizo and egg bake

640px-Chorizo_Extra_BellotaLIKE sausage and eggs? Fancy an exotic variation on that time-honoured classic quick meal? Then this recipe for chorizo and egg bake is for you.

This Spanish dish has all the zinging colours of an Andalucian sunset – and a flavour to match. Wash it down with either a white or red Rioja or carmenere while dreaming of your next trip the the sunny Costas!

Chorizo – a pork sausage – is a staple in Spain and it can be found in British supermarkets.

Serves four.

Ingredients

150g of chorizo, diced (make sure to peel the skin off first)
1 red onion, chopped
1 red plus 1 yellow or orange pepper, sliced and deseeded
350g tomatoes, chopped roughly
Half teaspoon of smoked paprika
30g unsalted butter
4 eggs (free-range if possible)
1 clove of garlic, crushed

Method

Preheat your oven to 180C (fan) gas mark 6
Cook the chorizo in a hot frying pan until the golden juice starts t run
Remove to a warmed plate
Add the peppersand fry for about 5 minutes
Add the garlic
Add the tomatoes and paprika and fry and stir for 6-8 minutes
Return the chorizo to the pan
Divide the frying pan contents among four large ramekins or four small, flattish ovenproof dishes
Make a depression in the mixture for the eggs
Break an egg into each hollow
Place a knob of butter on top of each egg and place the dishes in the oven for 10 minutes

Serve

You can just eat it as it is or you can serve with a green salad and/or crusty bread.

¡Buen provecho!, as they say in Spain.

 

©WordMediaCo Ltd. If you wish to reproduce or translate this article, you may do so, provided you add the following credit: This article was written by David Boyes. He is a media consultant and trainer who empowers businesses to use social media more strategically. For more information visit: http://www.wordmedia.co