Red Mullet with Mint and Saffron

red_mullet_mint
Ingredients:
12 small or 8 larger red mullet
8tbs olive oil
6tbs vermouth
good pinch of saffron strands
handfull of fresh mint

Method:
Gut and descale the mullet leaving the heads on, pack tightly into a dish. Mix together the olive oil, vermouth, roughly chopped mint and saffron strands and then pour over the mullet. Leave to marinate for an hour or so. Put into a hot oven at 220C for 10 – 15 minutes. Serve with boiled, waxy, potatoes which can be crushed on the plate to absorb the wonderful juices!

Moussaka

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Moussaka

Ingredients:
1 aubergine
2 medium size potatoes
400g minced lamb
1 onion
1 clove of garlic
1 tin tomatoes
some fresh sage leaves
bay leaf
50g butter
50g flour
600ml milk
50g finely grated parmesan
olive oil, salt & pepper

Slice the aubergine into 5mm thick slices, brush with olive oil and griddle in a ridged pan until browned, set aside. Peel and slice the potatoes thinly, cook in more oil than you would normally use in a frying pan at a very, very low heat. The potaoto must stew in the oil rather than fry. When done set aside. Chop the onion and garlic, fry in a little olive oil until softened then increase the heat and add the minced lamb. Cook until the lamb is well browned and then strain the fat from the pan. Add the tin of tomatoes the chopped sage, bayleaf, seasoning and cook until reduced. Make the sauce by melting the butter, adding the flour to make a roux and then slowly adding the milk while stirring all the time. Keep stirring while heating until thick and bubbling. Here are the ready made components.
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Moussaka Components

To assemble spread one third of the aubergines and potato over the bottom of the dish, on top of this layer spread half of the lamb mixture, then another third of vegetables, the other half of the lamb and finally the last third of vegetables. Pour the white sauce over everything and sprinkle with the grated cheese. If you’ve got a spare tomato to hand you could slice it and put it in top as I did with this one. Bake at 180C for 30-40 mins until the top is browned.

Aubergine Parmigiana

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Aubergine Parmigiana

Ingredients:
1 large aubergine, cut into 1cm thick slices
1/2 onion finely chopped
1 clove garlic chopped
50g parmesan finely grated
1 400g tin tomatoes
breadcrumbs
sprig of thyme
fresh basil
olive oil, salt and pepper

Method:
Brush the aubergine slices with olive oil and cook on a fairly hot griddle pan in several batches until nicely browned. Put a good slug of olive oil into a pan, add the onion and garlic, cook for around 5 minutes to soften the onion but don’t let it brown. Add the tinned tomatoes, the thyme, a pinch of sugar and salt and simmer until slightly thickened which will probably take 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in some torn basil leaves.

Spread a layer of the tomato sauce in an ovenproof dish and generously sprinkle with some of the parmesan, add a layer of aubergine slices. Repeat the layers finishing with tomato sauce and parmesan. Mix the breadcrumbs with some olive oil and then sprinkle these over the top. Bake at 180C for 30 minutes or until bubbling and crispy on top.

Cheese and Sweetcorn Cornbread

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Cheese and Sweetcorn Cornbread

Ingredients:
25g melted butter
140g plain flour
130g polenta
1/2tsp bicarbonate of soda
2tsp baking powder
1tsp salt
1tbs sugar
large or small pinch of chilli flakes, you choose!
80g grated cheddar
2 eggs beaten
300ml milk or better still buttermilk
150g sweetcorn kernals

Method:
Melt the butter, mix the milk/buttermilk with the beaten eggs and add the melted butter. Mix all the other ingredients, except the sweetcorn kernals, together in a bowl and make a well in the centre. Slowly pour and stir in the liquid, finally mix in the sweetcorn. This quantity will nicely fit a 2lb loaf tin which should already be buttered. Bake at 200C for 30-40 minutes. The pictured cornbread was made with half quantities of everything, gathered into a ‘lump’ and baked in a smaller ceramic dish.