A Cornish girl's food adventures

Tag: herbs

Garlic and herb flatbreads

Garlic and herb flatbreads

When other women go to New York they head to 5th Avenue to buy designer shoes and handbags. Not me. I head to The Bowery and trawl through the restaurant supply stores. When we went recently Mr Colonial Cravings treated me to a tortilla press […]

Beetroot & cannellini bean dip

Beetroot & cannellini bean dip

I love hummus as much as the next person but summer barbecues when you don’t eat meat can get a bit hummus heavy so it’s nice to have a bit of a change every now and then. This recipe is ludicrously good for you! It’s […]

Beetroot and halloumi rosti

Beetroot and halloumi rosti

I’ve taken the delicious salad that Rach from our little community shared on here last summer as the flavour inspiration for these. I bloomin’ love beetroot and dill, alone or together, they put me in veggie heaven.
These little vegetable patties are so delicious, crisp and crunchy on the outside but lovely and soft in the middle. The earthy beetroot goes wonderfully with the salty tang of the halloumi cheese and the delicate aniseed flavour of the dill.
The rosti are very versatile too, Mr Colonial Cravings likes them crowned with a soft poached egg, which would be a breakfast to really set you up for the day. I like mine with a dollop of creamy yoghurt and mint dressing and some avocado accompanied by a big handful of fresh green leaves.

Ingredients
makes about 10
850g potato
350g raw beetroot
200g halloumi
3 heaped tbsp chopped dill
salt and pepper to taste
butter and oil for frying

Start by grating the spuds, don’t bother to peel them, just give them a good scrub. Pile the shredded potato into a clean tea towel and try to wring out as much moisture as possible. Pop the potato in a bowl and microwave it for three minutes. This is the best way that I’ve found of starting to get the starches to break down and become sticky without adding any extra moisture.
Grate the halloumi and the beets and mix them with the potato. I find it easiest to let it cool a bit and get stuck in with my hands. Add the dill and the salt and pepper to taste (remember the cheese is quite salty) and mix them through too.


Squeeze together handfuls of the mixture to make patties about the size of a burger and fry them in batches in a heavy frying pan in a mixture of butter and vegetable oil (one stops the other from burning).
Use a spatula to press, coax and cajole the rosti into holding its shape and sticking together. Cook the rosti for 3-5 minutes over a medium heat until they are a deep golden colour before carefully turning them over to cook the other side. Serve hot with your favourite topping.

Dinky crab & chili pasties

Dinky crab & chili pasties

Crab was a particular speciality where we were living in the USA. Hauled out of the Chesapeake and boiled up with Old Bay seasoning or turned into delicious crab cakes. It’s a delicacy back home in Cornwall too, freshly picked and eaten in sandwiches. I’ve […]

Lime, thyme and elderflower meringue pie

Lime, thyme and elderflower meringue pie

I know what you’re thinking, ‘lemon meringue pie is a classic, you don’t need to mess around with it.’ But I say a change is as good as a rest so why not try something a little bit different? This pie still has all the […]

Caerphilly, honey and thyme scones

Caerphilly, honey and thyme scones

The first of March was St David’s Day, the patron saint of Wales. Whilst I will always feel more Cornish than anything else, technically I’m Welsh as that’s the country I was born in. The two places do have quite a lot in common though.
I always like to make something suitably Welsh to enjoy on St Davids Day, whether it’s warm sweet Welsh cakes or hot gooey Welsh rarebit. This year I wanted to make the most of some wonderful Caerphilly cheese. I’m utterly incapable of resisting a warm cheese scone. It wouldn’t matter if I’d just polished off a three course meal, if someone offered me a cheese scone, fresh from the oven, I’d find room for it.
I’ve made these with spelt flour so they’re extra light and fluffy and I’ve added a touch of sweet honey and a sprinkle of savoury thyme to complement the rich cheese. Scrumptious!

Ingredients
makes about 9

250g white spelt flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
35g butter
pinch of ground black pepper
150g Caerphilly cheese, rind removed
1 heaped tbsp fresh thyme leaves
150ml buttermilk
2 tbsp honey

Pre-heat your oven to 200°c and place a non-stick baking tray in the oven to warm up.
Sift together the flour and the raising agents and then lightly rub the butter into this, leaving it looking like breadcrumbs. Mix through the thyme, black pepper and 100g of the cheese, crumbled.
In a separate bowl or jug mix together the buttermilk and honey ( I find this easier if I warm the honey a bit). Use all but about 1 tablespoon of this to bring the dry ingredients together to form a soft but not sticky dough.
Pat the dough out to about 1″ thick and stamp out the scones with a 2″ cutter. Brush the tops of the scones with the reserved buttermilk/honey mix and then scatter on the remaining 50g of crumbled cheese. Carefully place the scones on the pre-heated tray and bake them for 15-20 minutes until they are well risen and golden brown and irresistible.

Galette Saracin

Galette Saracin

I love visiting Brittany, probably because it’s quite similar to Cornwall. And because the food is so delicious. I can’t go to Brittany and not eat a galette at some point. Preferably filled with gooey, melty Emmental. Mr Colonial Cravings is a fan too, although […]

Blood orange, poppyseed and thyme cake

Blood orange, poppyseed and thyme cake

I love a good citrus bake. Pies, tarts, bars, they’re all good. And then there are citrus cakes. I think I might even prefer a tangy citrus flavoured cake to a rich chocolate one. This one is so pretty too. Blood oranges are such a […]

Labneh

Labneh

Labneh is a Middle Eastern cream cheese made from strained yoghurt. It’s a little softer and slightly less sticky than standard cream cheese and has a delicious fresh tart flavour. It’s also incredibly easy to make and only requires a couple of ingredients. I like to use fat-free Greek yoghurt as it tends to be a little thicker to start with. The longer you leave it to strain the thicker the resulting cheese will be but you need to allow a minimum of 24 hours for this. I leave mine for 36 hours (give or take).
This is delicious just served very simply on toasted sourdough, topped with some flavourful sun-dried tomatoes.

Ingredients
400-500g fat-free Greek yoghurt (depending on the capacity of your sieve)
big pinch of sea salt
olive oil
finely chopped mixed ‘soft’ herbs (whatever you like, match the flavours to what you’re serving the labneh with)

You’ll also need a sieve and a piece of cheese cloth

Line your sieve with the cheese cloth and place it over a suitably sized bowl. Stir the salt into the yoghurt and then tip it into the sieve. Loosely tie up the cheese cloth and then put the whole lot in the fridge and leave it to strain for at least 24 hours, a little longer if you want it to be thick enough to roll like mine.
Once the whey has been strained out you should be left with a thick cream cheese. Rub a little olive oil on your hands and then, using a spoonful at a time, roll the cheese into balls before coating them in the chopped herbs. Pop the balls into a serving bowl or a pot if you’re storing them for a few days, and drizzle them with a splash more oil. Delicious!

Partridge in a pear tree cocktail

Partridge in a pear tree cocktail

My friend Rach set me the task of creating a recipe to make use of a bottle of ginger wine that had been languishing in her booze cabinet for some time. Not only does this cocktail make use of that ginger wine but it practically […]