Furikake Devilled Eggs

Around the holidays, sometimes I like to make a few things to nibble on rather than a normal ‘meat’ and 3 veg meal. I clearly was taken with Asian food this year considering the Korean pinwheels and these Japanese flavoured devilled eggs. In case, like me, you were wondering why they’re called devilled eggs, to save you a google search, devilled was a word to describe anything highly seasoned back in the medieval times and the normal recipe does usually contain cayenne pepper or paprika. This version’s a bit more of an interesting take on the classic devilled eggs containing furikake and Kewpie mayonnaise which is a Japanese mayo and is well worth taking the trouble to find over normal mayonnaise. Furikake is a Japanese seasoning with a mixture of different things such as seaweed, dried fish and sesame seeds. I honestly can’t really tell the difference between this and togarashi so if you have that, use that instead. If you don’t have it, it’s also well worth finding as it makes anything you sprinkle it on delectable. I saw the recipe on BBC Good Food, I didn’t have wasabi so I subbed it with miso paste.

Makes 12 egg halves

Ingredients

  • 6 eggs
  • 2 tbsp kewpie mayonnaise
  • 2 spring onions
  • 1 tsp miso
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp pickled ginger (I unfortunately had to omit this due to lack of stock at my local supermarket)
  • 3 tbsp furikake

Method

1.) Boil some water and pour into a deep pan. Put the eggs into the pan and simmer for 10 minutes until hard boiled.

2.) Leave to cool or put in some ice water if you want to speed up the process.

3.) Peel the shells off the eggs and chop the eggs in half.

4.) Scoop the egg yolks out with a spoon into a bowl. Slice finely the spring onions and add to the bowl. Measure in the mayonnaise, miso, sesame oil and ginger.

5.) Mash everything with a fork until you get a paste.

6.) Spread the furikake seasoning onto a plate and press each egg half lightly onto the seasoning so that it sticks. Sprinkle the egg yolk holes with the remaining seasoning.

7.) Spoon the egg mixture into the recess where the yolk was (or pipe if you want to be fancy and you don’t have 8 Harry Potter films to get through over your holiday break).

Kimchi & Cheese Pinwheels

So if Yorkshire Puddings are one of my favourite things then Kimchi is definitely another. Kimchi is a popular side dish in South-Korea (probably North too but I haven’t visited there!) and comes free with every meal. It’s just cabbage fermented in Korean spices and is absolutely delicious and apparently really good for you too. Unfortunately, I can’t claim this recipe as a health food as cheese and puff pastry are also in the mix but I can claim that it’s delicious. On the BBC Good Food recipe I used, there is 70g kimchi. This didn’t really seem like so much as I really wanted the kimchi flavour to come through so I used a large jar, picking up the pieces of cabbage with a fork to avoid the juices soaking the pastry.

Makes about 12 – 14

Ingredients

  • 1 roll puff pastry (mine was about 340g)#
  • 2 spring onions
  • 150g mature cheddar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 large jar kimchi

Method

1.) Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C

2.) Grate 150g cheese. Finely slice the spring onions. Break an egg into a bowl and whisk it up with a fork.

3.) Prepare a baking tray with some parchment paper.

4.) Roll out the pastry onto the baking tray.

5.) Sprinkle the cheese and onions over the pastry. Dot around pieces of the kimchi.

6.) Tightly roll up the puff pastry.

7.) Slice up the roll of pastry, place the wheels flat on the baking tray.

8.) Brush the wheels with the egg.

9.) Bake for 30 – 35 minutes.

10.) Leave to cool for 5 – 10 minutes before attempting to move the pinwheels.

Port & Stilton Sauce

When I first met my now husband, we used to cook together on the weekends and he introduced me to port and stilton sauce which was an instant hit with me even though I wasn’t at that point fully sold on port (oh how things change). I decided to serve it with our Christmas dinner this year as I don’t often have a reason to make it as it’s a usual accompaniment to steak. It did go very well with our fake turkey joint though. I used the recipe from Waitrose but I thought it needed a touch more stilton. Maybe it depends on your blue cheese. We had a lovely port and stilton hamper from my sister in law for Christmas – it’s almost as if she knew our dinner plans.

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 25g butter
  • 25g plain flour
  • 100g stilton
  • 200ml milk
  • 50ml port
  • pepper

Method

1.) Weigh out the butter, flour, stilton. Add the milk and port to a measuring jug.

2.) Melt the butter in a pan and add the flour. Stir to make a paste then cook off for a couple of minutes.

3.) Crumble in the stilton and melt in the pan.

4.) Add the milk and port mixture gradually until everything is combined, whisking out all the lumps and adding more liquid once the sauce thickens up.

5.) Season with pepper.

Faux Gras

I only tried foie gras once before before becoming pescatarian and though I did enjoy the flavour being that it’s basically a richer form of chicken liver pâte there was always the guilt of the method of production. We tried the foie gras in a French restaurant in Washington DC after explaining to the server that we had reservations over the cruelty and the French owner thinking that we were joking and serving it to us anyway. In the UK, foie gras has actually been banned now so there was at least one good thing to come out of 2021. This is what led the Michelin starred chef Alex Gauthier who is actually vegan himself to create a vegan version of foie gras. Obviously it’s not the same as the real thing but it’s still delicious coupled with Sauternes wine and it really still feels luxurious despite being very simple to make. The original recipe has beetroot purée in it which gives it the similar pink tone of the real stuff. You may want to omit this if you want it to be less reminiscent of meat.

Serves a lot in fact maybe half this recipe if possible

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp butter (vegan or normal if like me, you’re not vegan)
  • 1 shallot
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 18 button mushrooms (I used 9 normal mushrooms)
  • few sprigs rosemary
  • few sprigs thyme
  • few sage leaves
  • 2 tbsp cognac
  • 200g lentils (makes about 400g cooked)
  • 150g walnuts
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp beetroot purée (I used 3 mini cooked beetroots)

Method

1.) Put the lentils in a pan, cover with water and bring to the boil. Simmer until cooked. Drain and place in the food processor.

2.) Peel and finely chop the shallot. Wash and slice the mushrooms. Strip the leaves from the herbs and finely dice.

3.) Melt the butter in a pan and cook the mushrooms and shallots until cooked.

4.) In the meantime, peel and finely chop the garlic.

5.) Add the garlic to the pan with the herbs and cook for one minute. Add the cognac and turn off the heat.

6.) Add the contents of the frying pan to the food processor.

7.) Toast the walnuts on a low heat until they’re starting to smell toasted.

8.) Add the walnuts to the food processor, along with the soy sauce and the beetroot. Blitz everything until a smooth paste is formed.

9.) Place into ramekins.

10.) Best served at room temperature with some crackers or bread and ideally some dessert wine.

Mascarpone & Leek Stuffed Crepes

I’ve recently discovered the wonderful world of Meetups. Having social events where you just turn up and don’t have to harass people for availability has considerably lowered my anxiety levels. I’m enjoying a French exchange group and also a book club/games night. Tomorrow, we’ll be discussing ‘Woman on the Edge of Time’. Feminist dystopia is so my genre with the added benefit of being a warm pub as opposed to being in the arctic tundra of my house (the boiler has broken down). This delicious recipe was in Gino Di Campo’s cookbook ‘Gino’s Veg Italia’ which is highly recommended. I used tinned artichokes but proper ones or the nice jarred ones would be even better. I was proud of myself for finally being able to make a half decent crepe. The trick being a hot pan and plenty of butter.

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 115g plain flour
  • 3 large eggs
  • 300ml milk
  • salt & pepper
  • butter
  • 2 tins artichokes
  • 1 leek
  • 50g self raising flour
  • 150g mascarpone
  • 50g parmesan
  • 25g parsley
  • pinch nutmeg

Method

1.) Make the crepes by whisking together the plain flour, milk and 1 off the eggs. Add a pinch of salt.

2.) Melt enough butter to cover a frying pan and pour in 1/8th of the crepe batter.

3.) Fry until browning on the bottom then turn over (or flip if you’re feeling brave).

4.) When browned on both sides, remove to a plate.

5.) Repeat until all the mixture is used. Wash out the pan.

6.) Now, preheat the oven to 180 degrees C

7.) Wash and slice the leek finely.

8.) Melt 1 tbsp butter into the pan and add the slices of leek. Open and drain the tins of artichokes and then wash the artichokes under the tap to remove the grit.

9.) Chop up the artichoke and add to the pan.

10.) While the leek is softening, separate the remaining two eggs into yolks and whites. Finely chop the parsley and grate the parmesan.

11.) Add the mascarpone, a pinch of nutmeg, the parmesan, some salt and pepper, the flour and the egg yolks to a mixing bowl and whisk.

12.) Once the leek is soft, remove everything from the pan and add to the mixing bowl. Give it a stir.

13.) Whisk up the egg whites until there is a light foam and then stir this through into the mixing bowl.

14.) Find an oven proof dish and start loading up with the crepes and filling. Do this by folding a crepe into half then half again to make a pocket. Stuff with the mascarpone mixture.

15.) Bake for 18 minutes to crisp up the pancakes.

Kippers with spicy potatoes

Probably shouldn’t be posting this recipe now during working hours but my manager’s out of office and I’m saving my motivation for my new job. Half of tomorrow will be spent planning my mini-trip to Paris and Reims which may result in some rose biscuits on this blog, just in time for the new series of the Great British Bake off which starts in under a week now! I found this recipe in ‘Palestine on a Plate’ and was fairly surprised that there was no Ras al Hanout or Harissa used and I might give that a go next time I make it or maybe even some pesto or some other spicesg mixed with the oil used. The oil in the recipe was 175ml which was a bit too much in my opinion, probably you’re better off with about 110ml but I very much liked this recipe, it was so quick to put together and obviously as a Brit I love potatoes. As you may expect, the original recipe did not contain kippers and rather halibut but when I did the online food shopping, searching for halibut just gave me options for the coconut rum – Malibu! I thought that kippers would be more appropriate but feel free to use any kind of fish.

Ingredients

  • 2 large potatoes
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 red chilli
  • 110ml olive oil
  • 2 plum tomatoes (or 10 mini plum tomatoes)
  • 10g parsley
  • 100g green beans
  • 1 lemon
  • salt
  • 4 fish fillets

Method

1.) Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C

2.) Slice up the potatoes thinly (no need to peel). Layer them on a baking tray so they’re slightly overlapping.

3.) Chop up the tomatoes, add them to a mixing bowl, peel and chop up the garlic and finely dice the chilli and add that too.

4.) Pour in the olive oil, chop up the parsley and add that, slice the lemon in half and squeeze in the juice. Add some salt and mix.

5.) Pour 3/4 of this mixture over the potatoes and bake for 20 minutes.

6.) Trim the green beans.

7.) Put the kippers in the middle of the tray, arrange the beans around the outside. Pour over the remainder of the oil mixture.

8.) Bake for another 10 – 12 minutes and serve.