June 2010 Archives

Preserving workshops, 25th & 26th June 2010

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smbottledcherries0001.JPGTogether with Riverford Organic Vegetables, I am running a series of hands-on seasonal workshops on preserving fruit and vegetables.  The classes are ideal for beginners and cover all the basics of preserving.

Our June sessions will include:

Strawberry & rhubarb jam
Spicy courgette chutney
'Bread & butter' pickles
Bottled brandied cherries
Rhubarb cordial



There will be samples to taste and jars and recipes to take home.

Dates:  Friday 25th, repeated Saturday 26th June 2010

Time:  10am - 3pm

Location:  London N5

Price:  £60 (includes light lunch)

To book:  email Paul Jardine at Riverford Camden & Islington

Secret Kitchen menu, 19th June 2010

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EatSlowBritaincover.jpg
Eat Slow Britain dinner

Grilled Dorset oysters with wild garlic butter and pinchitos morunos with
Black Isle Brewery beers and Dunkertons ciders

Ricotta, broad bean & pea salad with home-cured lomo

Stocks Farm lamb with salsa verde, new potatoes, braised greens, honeyed beetroots and carrots, and grilled courgette & asparagus salad

Flourless Cocoa Loco chocolate cake with cherries, strawberries and cream

Hafod and Stichelton

Coffee and home-made liqueurs

Green bean zeytinyağlı

turkey
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I learnt this dish while staying with Zeliha İrez, an amazing cook who runs a guesthouse in Turkey.  Zeliha uses a pressure cooker to speed things up.  If you don’t have one, try to leave the beans gently cooking for five or more hours. 

Zeytinyağlı foods are a family of vegetable dishes which are cooked in olive oil.  They are common in western Turkey, where olive trees grow.  The beauty of the dish is that everything goes in the pot together and then requires little attention.

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Turkish style stuffed greens

turkey
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In Turkey all kinds of things get stuffed with delicious rice - aubergines, tomatoes, peppers, cabbage leaves, vine leaves and more.  ‘Dolma’ are stuffed things and ‘sarma’ are rolled or wrapped things, so strictly these parcels are sarma.  They work really well with spring or summer greens, which arrive in my weekly veg box.

smspringgreensarma0003.JPGVersions of sarma are also found in Greece, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Poland and elsewhere - sometimes with meaty fillings.  This combination of rice, pine nuts, currants and warm spices is typical of western Turkey - around Istanbul and down the Aegean coast, where the Romans established pine tree plantations millennia ago to feed their pine nut addiction. 

The trick is to partially cook the rice before filling the leaves - cooked enough so they won’t burst their wrappers in the cooking pot, but uncooked enough to expand a little to form tight parcels.  Sarma might be fiddly to make, but when you taste the results of your labour, you’ll realise why they spread so far.  


Wild garlic cacık

greece, turkey
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Cacık (pronounced ‘jajuk’) is the Turkish equivalent of Greek tzatziki - a garlicky yoghurt and cucumber dip/soup/salad, depending on what it’s served with.  It’s a fantastic accompaniment to kebabs, meatballs and cooked vegetable dishes, and there is some evidence that eating yoghurt with meat is good for us.  It’s usually made with pounded garlic cloves, but bright green wild garlic makes a very pretty alternative.

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