Land cress pesto

July 5th, 2010

In a food processor combine 40g land cress, a pinch of salt, 25g toasted cashews and 1 clove garlic. Process until very finely chopped, then add 50g grated Parmesan and work to a paste. Gradually add 5-6 tablespoons of olive oil and work until you have a thick green sauce.

Rocket and watercress are an easy and excellent substitute for land cress.

Roasted carrot, cauliflower and almond salad

June 30th, 2010

In a large bowl combine the following ingredients and mix well with your hands:

1 cauliflower broken into florets. 10 baby carrots cut lengthways into quarters. 3 tablespoons of olive oil. 1 clove of garlic ground to a paste. Half a teaspoon of sea salt and half a teaspoon of ground coriander.

Place in a single layer on a baking tray and roast until tender and golden brown – about 20-30 minutes at 230c.

Take it from the oven and scatter over a large handful of toasted flaked almonds. Gently mix, pile onto a platter and leave to cool to room temperature before eating.

French yogurt cake with rhubarb

June 18th, 2010

A good few hours – or even the night before, chop 1lb of rhubarb in to 1 inch pieces and combine well with 100g of vanilla sugar or plain caster sugar. Do this in a non-reactive bowl. The sugar will draw the natural juice from the rhubarb and sweeten it slightly. Stir occasionally to make sure all the sugar is dissolved, it will produce a good amount of  syrup – You are drawing the water out of the rhubarb here so that it doesn’t all come out in the cake and make it soggy. Strain off and reserve the syrup for later.

For the yogurt cake – In a large bowl gently combine 2 large eggs, 1 cup of yogurt, 1 cup of caster sugar, 1/3 cup of vegetable oil and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Sift over 2 cups of self-raising flour and gently mix until only just combined, then stir in the strained rhubarb.

Pour into a 9-10 inch cake tin which has been well greased and the base lined with greaseproof paper. Bake at 180c from anywhere between 30-45 minutes or until the top is quite golden and test with a skewer.

While the cake is cooking, gently heat the rhubarb syrup until it has reduced slightly. About 5 minutes before the cake is done, take it from the oven and pour over the hot syrup, return it to the oven and continue cooking until it’s done.

Let the cake stand for 10 minutes, run a knife around the sides to loosen any sticky bits, then turn out to cool.

The basic yogurt cake (minus the rhubarb) is really easy to bake with children. It is good warm, cold  or better still a day later. The original recipe and background information for the cake can be found here at Chocolate & Zucchini. Thank you Clotilde!