Salad of sweet potato, mango, scallions with coriander and lime vinaigrette
2 medium sized sweet potatoes,
1/2 medium sized mango, firm but ripe,
1 small scallion, 2 small chili peppers,
1 large lime, 20g fresh ginger root,
1 tablespoon syrup (your choice), 5g fresh
coriander, 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil.
Wash the sweet potato, dry and place on a large sheet of tin foil. Drizzle with a little olive oil, wrap up and bake in a hot oven for about 1 hour. Remove, leave to cool in the foil for at least 30 minutes then remove skin (if desired) and dice the flesh.
Remove the stalk and seeds from the chili pepper, trim top and bottom, cut into thin strips (retain seeds if you like extra heat). Remove the outer layer of the scallion and finely slice diagonally. Remove the skin from the mango, dice the flesh. To make the vinaigrette. Peel and finely grate the ginger, place in a large bowl along with any juice. Zest the lime and then juice, add to the ginger. Add the syrup and olive oil. Set aside the best coriander sprigs to garnish the salad, finely chop the rest and add to the ginger.
Bring together all the ingredients immediately before serving, dress, garnish with fresh coriander.
Char grilled vegetable salad with thyme dressing
Any vegetables can be used for this salad including harder roots and softer fruit, these are just a suggestion and give good results easily.
4 small green peppers,
1 yellow pepper,
1 red pepper,
6 runner beans,
8 small button mushrooms,
12 cherry tomatoes.
Trim the leeks and beans, cut diagonally into 4cm lengths. De-seed the peppers and shape each into 8 pieces. Slice the courgettes diagonally (0.5cm thick). Trim the mushrooms. Blanch the leeks for 3 minutes, plunge immediately into cold water, drain and set aside. Do the same for the beans, cooking for 30 seconds only. Pre heat the char grill for 7 minutes. Char grill the vegetables in batches, turning after a minute or when they have blackened marks. Char grilling the peppers will just soften them. If you prefer them better cooked, put them to sweat in a sealed container or a plastic bag directly after grilling.
For the dressing, mix 1 teaspoon coarse grain mustard with 20ml white wine vinegar, 50ml extra virgin olive oil, juice of 1 lemon, a handful of thyme leaves, pinch of salt, sugar (if you like) and pepper.
Arrange all the vegetables in a dish, drizzle with the dressing, serve warm or cold.
Salad nectarines, red peppers, basil and scallion tops
1 bunch fresh medium sized spinach leaves,
1 small red pepper,
2-3 ripe nectarines,
4 cm length cucumber,
2 green scallion tops,
20 large fresh basil leaves,
1 teaspoon white sesame seeds,
extra virgin olive oil,
2 teaspoons whole grain mustard,
1 lemon (zest and juice),
1 dessertspoon syrup sweetener of your choice,
generous pinch of salt and pepper
Peel the nectarines and macerate the peel in with the sugar, leave for 15 minutes. Finely slice the flesh in halves from around the stone and set aside. Remove the stalk and seeds from the pepper, finely slice the flesh into strips about 4 cm long, drizzle generously with olive oil and leave to marinate for 15 minutes. Peel the cucumber, finely dice the flesh, season with pepper and set aside.
To make the vinaigrette, take the macerated nectarine skin/sugar mix and push through a conical sieve, collect the liquid pulp and put into a small container. Add the mustard, lemon juice and zest, 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper, mix thoroughly.
Trim and wash the spinach leaves, dab dry and arrange in a dish with stems centrally placed. Place the basil leaves in with the spinach. Scatter the nectarine slices on top of the leaves. Scatter the diced cucumber and marinated pepper strips over the leaves. Dress the salad with the vinaigrette (do not toss).
Finely slice the scallion tops in long strips and scatter over the leaves, sprinkle with the sesame seeds. Serve immediately. A fragrant, sweet and slightly fruity vitamin packed salad.
Seared swordfish with green peppers, red currants and chives
We buy our swordfish in large chunks which are a quarter section of whole big fish - it is fantastically fresh. In Spain this is served thinly sliced on the bone with lemon and oil. It is a perfect way of serving such fresh fish. In our version here, we cut the fish thicker and sear it in extra virgin olive oil. The resulting succulent fish is complemented by the tartness of the redcurrants, the subtlety of the chives and the flavourful peppers.
250g swordfish (no skin, no bones),
2 green peppers,
30 red currants,
1 bunch chives,
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil,
coarse sea salt,
freshly ground black pepper.
Cut the swordfish into thin slices and season with pepper. Remove the redcurrants from their stalks. Juice the lemon. Cut the chives into 5cm lengths. De-seed the peppers and cut into oval shapes. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a shallow pan, sauté the peppers on high for about 2 minutes. Remove from the pan, put in a sealed container or plastic bag to sweat. Add the swordfish to the pan with a little more olive oil and sear for 1 minute on each side until golden, add the lemon juice. Turn out into a serving dish with all the juices, add the green peppers, red currants and chives. Drizzle with olive oil and season with sea salt. Serve immediately,
Avocado, paw paw, chives and black sesame
The avocado and paw paw, a few chives, olive oil and black sesame, a simple vibrant combination that needs nothing else.
Sweet potato, vine tomato, red onion and lime
In the veg market (and sometimes from the bakers) you can buy prebaked sweet potatoes. These are wonderful to eat with a few flakes of salt but if you have a little more time cut them into thick slices and chargrill them for that extra flavour layer. Combine with slices of ripe plum tomatoes, thinly sliced red onion, lime zest, fresh coriander and olive oil.
Figs in raspberry jelly
When our figs are at their peak during the summer, this makes a light and delicate dessert. The textures and flavours work well together with the light jelly just holding the figs in place. For this recipe you will need 4 glasses each with a capacity of 150ml at approximately two thirds full.
2 large oranges,
1 lemon (juiced),
100ml apple juice,
100g caster sugar,
6 fresh figs,
4 gelatin sheets or 4g powdered sachets
Trim the fig tops and slice in half. Place 3 fig halves in each glass (with the insides outwardly facing) and set aside.
Finely zest and juice the oranges. Put in a pan with the apple juice, lemon, sugar and raspberries. Simmer for 2 minutes, mash the raspberries into the liquid and continue to simmer for 1 minute. Strain - measure 400ml and put back into the pan on low heat. Add the gelatin (if using sheets, presoak before adding) - use a small whisk to make sure all has dissolved. Remove from the heat and pour evenly into the glasses over the figs. Put in the fridge to set.
Spinach, feta cheese, peppers and sunflower seeds
Another meal in itself, the feta adds just the right amount of saltiness against the sweet raisins. Toss together, diced red and green pepper, cucumber, small red onion, a couple of diced vine tomatoes, a hand full of baby spinach leaves, 100g diced feta cheese, and a handful of Malaga raisins. Dress with a vinaigrette of extra virgin olive oil, white wine vinegar, lemon juice. Season with black pepper, scatter with sunflower seeds.
Sweet rice cakes
These are oriental in origin and look artificial but aren't. The sticky rice is made like one would for sushi and is sweetened with a syrup (your choice), simply flavoured infusing spices such as cardamom or anise and coloured for example with beetroot, saffron or orange... children love them!
Mango, pomegranate, strawberry.
Into the liquidizer put the flesh of 8 large ripe strawberries, the juice from one lime and 0.5l fresh 100% natural pomegranate juice. Liquidize thoroughly until smooth, pour into glasses, half full. Clean the liquidizer, dice the flesh of one ripe mango, liquidize until smooth, layer over the red pulp. Consume immediately.