Friday, October 31, 2014

roast stuffed pumpkin

I'll show you the way to the next pumpkin recipe
Oh, don't ask why
Oh, don't ask why

For if we don't find 
The next pumpkin recipe
I tell you we must die 
I tell you we must die

roast stuffed pumpkin for a Halloween night 
around 370g  butternut squash (seeds already scooped out)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
3 tablespoons brown rice
4 cloves of garlic (peeled and sliced)
one cinnamon stick
handful of cubed pancetta         
handful of chopped walnuts
glass of hot water (recently boiled)
salt and pepper (to taste)

Heat oil in the pan and add pancetta. Fry pancetta gently and when it starts to color add garlic, walnuts, cinnamon and rice. Stir for just few minutes and then add water. Leave to cook on a medium heat until rice has absorbed all the liquid (20 to 30 minutes). Rice should be soft but not soggy. Check seasoning and add pepper and salt and remove cinnamon stick.

Preheat the oven to 180°C.
Halve the squash, leaving the skin on, and scoop out the seeds. Rub insides of the pumpkin halves with some salt (not too much). Place the squash halves into a roasting tin. Fill each half with rice stuffing. Wrap stuffed halves well with aluminum foil and place in the oven to roast for about 30-40 minutes (until pumpkin is tender).

Take the pumpkin out of the oven and let sit for 10 minutes before serving. You can slice each half and grate some parmesan on top.

We love you pumpkin!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

pumpkin mezze

carrot & butternut fritters

This fresh and seducing pumpkin appetizer is created by Honey & Co by Itamar Srulovich and Sarit Packer. I had to make some changes as I did not have tarragon, and I did not use ground cardamom pods. I used cardamom seeds, so when you bite you accidentally bite a black seed which makes explosion of flavors in your mouth. Fritters are best to be eaten right away and lime or lemon juice make no problem of possible mouth burning plus this acidity makes perfect combo with sweetness from pumpkin.

1 large carrot, peeled (about 150g)
1 medium potato, peeled (about 150g)
¼ butternut squash, peeled and deseeded (about 150g)
½ onion, peeled (about 60g)
½ tsp + ½ tsp salt
2 eggs
6 sprigs of tarragon, picked and roughly chopped
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp ground cardamom pods,
crashed only seeds used
3 tbsp wholemeal flour
½ tsp baking powder
vegetable oil for frying

Grate all the vegetables on a coarse grater (or use a food processor) and place in a sieve over a bowl. Sprinkle with half a teaspoon of salt and mix lightly. Allow to sit for at least 30 minutes at room temperature to draw out the excess water.
Place the eggs, tarragon, remaining half-teaspoon of salt, pepper, ground cardamom
seeds, flour and baking powder in a bowl. Squeeze out whatever liquid you can from the vegetables, add them to the bowl and mix vigorously to combine.
Heat about 2cm of oil in a frying pan, and line a plate with some absorbent kitchen paper. Scoop little spoonfuls of the batter into the oil and fry for about a minute until they start to crisp up. Flip the fritters carefully and fry on the other side for another minute or so till crisp. Remove to the lined plate to absorb the excess oil. Repeat until you have used up all the batter.

Serve with lime or lemon halves. 

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

no surprises

You wake up one day and you realize that you are half broken. Your spirit somehow has ‘fallen’, like these yellow leaves that we see more and more falling from trees as winter is rapidly approaching. Job is slowly killing you, or whatever is happening in your life is ‘killing you’. You feel endlessly tired and you look unhappy. It is that horrible feeling like taking a bus that is going nowhere.
Luckily after a while you do wake up and everything is like before, hopes and dreams exist again, you have overcome yourself, you have survived. And you need fuel, you need food to repair some of your broken parts.

I usually crave for baked fruits or cooked and mashed vegetables, when I am half broken. Baked quince was on my mind just the other day. But shit happens. Pardonne moi but I was rather surprised not finding the quince on the market in October! How this happened?! The salesman said that they are gone, gone for this year. Gone where?

Since October is the ultimate pumpkin month I will stick to that and there will be no more surprises, no surprises with October recipes.  

Pumpkin as a starter / pumpkin, potato and apple soup

600g pumpkin (peeled and diced)
300g sweet potato (peeled and diced)
200g potato (peeled and diced)
300g apples (one big, big apple, peeled and diced)
2 tbsp sunflower oil 
salt to taste
juice of one lemon
approximately 600ml hot water (recently boiled) 
heavy cream/buttermilk/aceto balsamico for garnishing 

Put diced vegetables and apple into a roasting tin with the oil and salt. Bake in the oven for about 40 minutes, until tender. Place baked goods in a blander, in batches, adding recently boiled water. Blend until smooth and pour in a pan. Heat and season with lemon juice and more salt if needed. 
Garnish with buttermilk, heavy cream or aceto balsamico.

This soup is honest and simple.

For Juan.