haddock risotto with leeks & peas

I love a good risotto and will pay good money for a well cooked, tasty one although sometimes this seems like a tough request or expectation.
A good risotto is a process and needs a little love for a delicious end result. Take the time, nurture the arborio rice and you will be left with a wonderfully tasty meal, perfect for lunch or dinner.
Arborio rice is a starchy, short-grained rice variety that produces a luxuriously creamy finish and can absorb quite a bit of liquid without becoming mushy.
A little effort for this one but well worth your time and patience.
I used skinless, de-boned haddock that was lightly smoked. It has a flaky texture and a beautifully delicate flavor, perfect for the rich, creamy risotto it is served with
This dish is quite rich so is best served it with a simple rocket & avocado or tomato salad or simple steamed vegetables.

ingredients | serves 4 -6 | a little effort
270g haddock fillet, lightly smoked & de-boned
350ml milk
1 bay leaf
1/2 white onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
300g uncooked risotto
600ml fish stock
1C dry white wine
1/3C cream
3T creme fraiche
4 leeks, washed and sliced diagonally
1C frozen peas
3/4C finely grated Parmesan
1t dried dill
1.5t fine salt
1.5t black pepper
zest of half a lemon
bunch of fresh parsley, finely chopped
fresh dill, garnish (optional)
2T olive oil
80g salted butter

how to do it
In a pot, bring the milk and bay leaf to a gentle boil. Gently submerge the haddock fillet into the milk, bring it down to a simmer and poach for two to three minutes per side.
Remove the haddock using a slotted spoon. Set aside and reserve the milk for later use. Mix the fish stock and white wine together in a large jug. Set aside.
In a large pot, melt 20g butter with the olive oil. Saute the chopped onion until glossy taking care not to burn it. Add the leaks and cook until soft. About three minutes.
Add the uncooked risotto to the pot and stir to coat. Add the garlic and dried dill and cook for one minute while stirring.
Gently pour about one cup of stock & wine mixture into the risotto and stir. Leave to cook on a gentle heat, stirring twice, until almost fully absorbed. Repeat this until you have used all of the liquid. Add the remaining 60g butter and stir through.
Now pour the poaching milk and cream into the risotto and leave to simmer, while stirring for about three minutes.
Add the peas, stir and cook for three minutes. Stir the creme fraiche through the risotto mixture. Add the salt, pepper, zest, parsley and parmesan and stir well.
Flake the poached haddock into the risotto and give it a gentle mix. Taste and adjust seasoning. Garnish with fresh dill if using.

From my kitchen to yours, with love x





salmon gravlax & citrus salad

Gravlax, traditionally Nordic, is a dish consisting of salmon that is cured by using sugar, salt & dill. It is served with bread or boiled potatoes and a dill & mustard sauce.
There are, however, many different gravlax recipes, personalised through taste and preference. Pernod is another great ingredient to use when curing salmon. It adds a beautiful, mild aniseed flavour to the fish very similar to that of fennel.
The recipe is easy and the process and time well worth it.
The quality of the salmon is really important here so get your hands on the best you can find from a trusted fishmonger. This is a starter portion. For a main meal simply double up the recipe.

ingredients | serves 4 | easy (starter portion for four)
600g salmon fillet, skin on
1C coarse salt
1C granulated sugar
1/2C fresh dill
1 large cucumber
3T coarse salt
1/2C cream cheese, room temperature
2T lemon juice
1/2t black pepper
3-4 oranges, sliced and skin removed
fresh chives, garnish
fresh dill, garnish
1t white sesame seeds (optional)
1t black sesame seeds (optional)

how to do it
Lay the salmon fillet skin side down in a large dish. Mix the sugar, salt & dill together and spoon this out onto the salmon. Cover the fillet well with the salt & sugar mixture.
Wrap the dish tightly with clingfilm and place into the refrigerator overnight.
Peel the cucumber with a julienne peeler, discarding the centre. Place the cucumber strips into a sieve over a bowl and strew with the two tablespoons of coarse salt. Leave to stand for about one hour. (This will remove excess moisture from the cucumber.)
Rinse the cucumber well under running water and dry on paper towel.
Mix the cream cheese, black pepper & lemon juice in a bowl. Add the cucumber ribbons and mix gently until well combined.
Slice the oranges into rounds and remove the skin with a sharp knife.
Remove the salmon from the fridge and rinse well under cold running water. Pat the fillet dry with towel paper and lay it flat on a work surface.
Slice the fillet into thin strips, against the grain.
Arrange the citrus onto a large plate. Place the gravlax on top and serve with the cucumber & cream cheese mixture.
Garnish the dish with the fresh herbs and sesame seeds.

From my kitchen to yours, with love x




brunch galette

nothing beats a late, lazy morning with amazing food! some days three meals are just too much for my stomach so i love a good brunch. and really, brunch is a mixture of breakfast & lunch, so anything goes.
this is my take of an eggs Benedict at lunch time and it is absolutely delicious! if you are not the smoked trout / salmon type then replace the fish with prosciutto, bacon or parma ham.
it seems like there is a lot going on here but this dish is actually so simple and really doesn’t take up a great majority of your time.
serve the galette with my creamy hollandaise. it will just not be the same without it.
* the galette in the photo is for two. i have adjusted the recipe to feed six.

ingredients | serves 6 | easy
1 roll puff pastry, thawed
300g mini asparagus (or size of choice)
100g smooth cream cheese, at room temperature
300g/400g smoked trout ribbons / smoked salmon
1 egg, beaten
2 spring onion, sliced at an angle
black pepper
salt
6 eggs
parmesan shavings, for garnish
fresh chives, for garnish
1 recipe hollandaise sauce (in my post dated 17 February 2021)

how to do it
preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.
place the ready rolled sheet of puff pastry on a greased oven tray. using a sharp knife, make cuts in the pastry, about 1cm from the side, to form a border. take care to not cut all the way through the pastry.
dock the pastry with a fork in the centre as well as in the border.
coat the centre of the pastry with the cream cheese. now lay the asparagus (which has been cut to fit the pastry) down on the cream cheese. season lightly with salt & black pepper and brush the border of the pastry with the beaten egg.
bake for about 20 – 25 minutes, until the pastry is golden and beautifully flaky. meanwhile, bring a small pot of water to the boil. gently lower the eggs into the water and cook for five minutes for soft boiled. pour the water off the eggs and top with cold water to stop the cooking process.
make the hollandaise sauce.
carefully remove the pan from the oven.
top the asparagus with the trout or salmon ribbons. gently place the eggs between the fish ribbons and cut it open using a sharp knife.
garnish the galette with the sliced spring onion, chopped chives and parmesan shavings.
place the galette in the middle of the table and serve with the hollandaise sauce.

from my kitchen to yours, with love x








tuna cakes

the fish cake. now this is a dish that will make a lengthy debate as everyone has their own recipe or version of ‘the fish cake.’ wether it is their own recipe, a passed down family recipe or a recipe that was cooked by the butler, it seems to be one of the most talked about, shared recipes out there.
this version is as simple as it is delicious and what i love about it is that the main ingredient comes from a can.
i served the tuna cakes for lunch with a sweet soya dressing (shop bought) and an asian like slaw.
this is another great, budget friendly meal that is ready in no time.

ingredients | serves 2 – 4 | easy
2x tinned tuna, liquid drained
1/2 small onion, very finely chopped
2cm fresh ginger, grated
1/2tsp finely chopped or grated fresh garlic
handful fresh cilantro, chopped
handful fresh parsley, chopped
1tbs fish sauce
2tsp fresh lemon juice
zest of 1 lemon
1/4c finely grated parmesan
1/2c fine breadcrumbs + more to dust cakes
2 eggs

how to do it
drain the tuna without pressing down too much. (that will dry it out completely.) place all of the ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
using your hands, mix the ingredients together until well combined. do not over mix.
portion the mixture into even sized patties. roll lightly in the fine breadcrumbs.
coat the bottom of a large skillet with oil and heat to medium. carefully place the patties into the oil, frying the patties in batches, until golden on each side.
remove and place on kitchen towel paper to remove excess oil.

serve with sweet soya sauce, a mixture of mayo & wasabi or a fish sauce vinaigrette.


prawn mac & cheese

i think there is big debate in the food industry about changing or personalising old favourites and traditional recipes. i, however, find this completely acceptable. i mean, how else do we find inspiration and new ideas?
macaroni & cheese is something i grew up with. wether my mother made a simple version of really only macaroni and a cheese sauce straight from the pan into our plates or a baked version with strips of fatty bacon nestled between the macaroni and very cheesy cheese sauce, it was a common dish in our home. it comes as no surprise that i, too, have my own versions of this very traditional, tasty dish.
this version is a rich, saucy, meaty, cheesy heaven. you can bake it in the oven to grill the cheese it was topped with or dish it straight from the pan simply topped with some parmesan shavings. either way, it is delicious!!

300g rigatoni pasta, cooked according to packet instructions
70g butter
30g flour
2 fat garlic cloves, peeled and chopped or grated
1/2 small onion, finely chopped or grated
2tsp paprika (not smoked)
2 pinches saffron threads
100g cheddar, grated
100g ricotta
50g parmesan, grated
350ml milk
100ml cream
1/2c fish stock
zest of 1/2 lemon
1/2tsp dijon mustard
1tbs worcestershire sauce
1tbs tomato puree
bunch fresh chives, chopped
bunch fresh dill, chopped
basil, leaves only
1tbs brown sugar
1/2tsp salt
1/2tsp black pepper
pinch chilli flakes
500g prawns (cleaned, uncooked & shelled)

how to do it
cook the pasta in salted, boiling water until al dente. drain and lightly oil. set aside.
bring the milk, cream & saffron to a light simmer. add the prawns and poach for about 5 minutes. remove prawns and set aside to cool. reserve the milk for the sauce.
melt the butter in a deep, oven proof skillet. add the onion and garlic and sauté until translucent taking care not to burn the garlic. stir in the paprika, tomato paste & brown sugar and cook for two minutes while stirring.
stir in the fish stock and mix until thick and smooth.
slowly pour in the milk & cream mixture while stirring or lightly whisking. simmer, while stirring, until thick and creamy. stir through the worcesterchire sauce, mustard, lemon zest, cheeses & a pinch of chilli flakes.
taste now and season.
roughly chop the cooled prawns and add it to the sauce together with the pasta.
stir through the dill and chives.
top with desired amount of grated cheese. (i used about 80g)
bake in the preheated oven for approximately 20 minutes until bubbly.
garnish with shaved parmesan and fresh basil leaves.

serve with a green salad.

from my kitchen to yours, with love x