Rhubarb, pear and ginger

Another rhubarb jam revelation. I thought that the pear flavour would be drowned out, but no, this is a winner. 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1kg rhubarb stems, chopped
  • 2 pears (around 200g)
  • 50g crystalised stem ginger
  • 1.2kg sugar
  • Juice of 2 lemons, or one lemon, one orange

METHOD:

  • Chop the rhubarb, and chop the ginger, mix and cover with the sugar
  • The next day, add the lemon juice, and the peeled chopped pears. 
  • Bring to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes, until the jam is thick.
  • Pour into warmed jars. 

Rhubarb and ginger jam

The classic jam. For each kilo of rhubarb, I use 50 grams of chopped crystalised ginger. You can also used powdered ginger, and adjust according to taste. If you love ginger, double the amount. 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1kg chopped rhubarb stems
  • 50g chopped crystalised ginger or 1 teaspoon of powdered ginger
  • 1kg sugar
  • juice of two small lemons

METHOD:

  • Chop the rhubarb and the ginger into the jam pan, and cover with the sugar. Leave overnight.
  • The next day, bring to the boil and then add the lemon juice. Simmer for around 20 minutes, until thick. 
  • Pour into warmed jars. 

Red Lentil Dal with ginger

This is another Madhur Jaffrey recipe from Curry Easy, a great side-dish for other curries. It is a good idea to make this early on in the meal preparation, as it can sit cooking slowly, and will stand in a warm spot once it is ready.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tsp finely chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ground turmeric
  • 3 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 140g chopped tomatoes, or 140g tinned chopped tomatoes
  • 200g red lentils
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 tbsp chopped coriander

METHOD:

  • Combine the garlic, ginger, ground coriander, cumin, cayenne and turmeric in a small bowl, ready to add to the pan. 
  • Pour the oil into a medium pan over a medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the chopped onion, and fry until it is beginning to turn golden at the edges. 
  • Add the spice mixture from the bowl, stir for a minute, add the tomatoes and continue to cook until the tomatoes have softened. 
  • Now add the lentils, 800ml water and salt and bring to the boil. Cover and simmer over a low heat for 45 minutes. Check from time to time, stir to prevent it from sticking, and possibly add a litte water if you think it is getting a bit too thick. 
  • For the last five minutes of cooking, uncover and stir, and then add in the fresh coriander. 

Rhubarb and ginger jam

I mentioned the large quantities of jam in our house to Spaid, and he started reminiscing about rhubarb jam, the best jam in the world if you come from the Hebrides. I made some, adds good vibes to work. 

INGREDIENTS: 

  • 1 kg summer rhubarb, chopped into very small segments
  • 25 g crystalised ginger
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 kg jam sugar

METHOD:

  • Chop the rhubarb and put it in the jam pan, with the finely chopped crystalised ginger, and the lemon juice. Pour the sugar over the top. Leave the mixture overnight. 
  • The next day, heat the rhubarb and sugar together until the sugar has dissolved, and then quickly bring to a fast boil, and boil until setting point is reached. 
  • Pour into warmed jars. 

 

Grantham Ginger Biscuits

I was baking for a coffee morning for the Uist Coastal Rowing Club. We are raising funds to build a new skiff, and we raised over £700, which is amazing. I made quite a lot of biscuits as they are easy to serve.

INGREDIENTS;

  • 125g butter
  • 125g caster sugar
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 125g self-raising flour

METHOD:

  • Cream the butter and sugar together
  • Add the ginger and flour and work into a stiff dough.
  • Divide into 24 small balls, and space out onto ungreased baking trays.
  • Bake at 130C for 45 minutes
  • Lift onto a wire cooling rack when they are done.

Pumpkin, ginger, and potato gratin

I’ve had this recipe for years and years. I think it is best with a firm squash or pumpkin, like butternut squash.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 1/2 lb pumpkin or squash, cubed
  • 1 1/2 lb potatoes, boiled for 15 minutes and cubed
  • 1 oz grated ginger
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom seeds
  • 1 oz butter (omit for a vegan version)
  • 3 floz olive oil
  • 1 oz wholemeal breadcrumbs

METHOD:

  • Melt the butter and the olive oil together and add the ginger, cumin and cardamom, and start to fry, for around 30 seconds
  • Add the potato, pumpkin and fry for another 10 minutes, until the pumpkin is softening and the potatoes are starting to brown.
  • Season with salt and pepper, put into an oven-proof gratin dish, and sprinkle with the breadcrumbs.
  • Place under a hot grill for a few minutes, until the top is crisp and the interior is bubbling.

Mashed potatoes and pears with ginger

This is an astonishingly good combination to serve with pork.

INGREDIENTS:

  • Enough potatoes for the number of people being served
  • About half that quantity of hard pears
  • Salt, pepper, butter
  • A tiny amount of finely chopped crystalised ginger

METHOD:

  • Peel and boil the potatoes as you would normally for mashed potatoes. Drain them, saving the boiling water
  • Peel and core the pears, and poach them in the potato water until they are soft
  • Mash the pears and potatoes together with salt, pepper, butter and the chopped ginger

Rhubarb and Ginger Jam

This is a classic. I use a very old version from a book by Marguerite Patten; the book is priced 2/6! The jam is best with rhubarb cut late in the year. I have recently reviewed this alongside the ‘Maw Broon’s cookbook’ and updated it. As usual, most of the ingredients can be ethically sourced.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 800g-1kg Rhubarb, locally grown
  • 200g crystalised ginger
  • 1kg jam sugar
  • Juice of 1 lemon

METHOD:

  • Cut the rhubarb into 1 inch pieces, and cover with the sugar to stand overnight.
  • Chop the ginger finely and sprinkle into the sugar.
  • Cook slowly in a jam pan, until the sugar has dissolved.
  • Add the lemon juice and bring to the boil. Heat quickly until the jam is thick, and boil for about 15 minutes.
  • Pour into clean warmed jars.

Ginger and Lettuce soup

Good for when you have bought the cheap veg in the co-op, and you don’t want a salad after all.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 onions, chopped small
  • 2 carrots, chopped small
  • 25g butter
  • 1 iceberg lettuce (or similar)
  • 1 cm fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  • 6 sprigs of parsley
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 1 litre of stock
  • salt and pepper
  • 50ml cream

METHOD:

  • Gently cook the onions and carrots in the butter until soft.
  • Turn up the heat and add the lettuce, ginger and parsley until they wilt, and then add the flour, stirring well.
  • Pour in the stock, and simmer for five minutes or so, until it starts to thicken.
  • Puree the soup, and then pour it through a fine sieve into a clean pan. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Reheat the soup, and serve with the cream swirled through, and with croutons.

Parsnip soup with ginger

A colleague was eating the most divine soup in the staffroom at work. I asked her what it was, and she replied that it was one of her stand-by recipes, parsnip and ginger. I have a recipe for parsnip soup, so I took that, mixed it with a recipe I already had and made this delicious spicy smooth soup.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 15g butter
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 3cm ginger root, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 500g bag of parsnips, (Misshapen parsnips v cheap in the shops at the moment)
  • 1 litre vegetable stock (you can also use beef stock if you are not vegetarian)
  • 1 small tub low calorie sour cream
  • salt and pepper

METHOD:

  • Melt the butter into the olive oil and slowly cook the chopped onions for ten minutes
  • Add the chopped ginger and garlic, continue cooking
  • Add the spices, and stir to incorporate
  • Dice the parsnips and add to the pan, stir and then add the stock, and simmer for 20 minutes
  • Puree the soup, season to taste, and blend in the sour cream.

There are so many ways to make parsnip soup. You could serve with bacon croutons, or sprinkle with chives, or toasted seeds. You can swap the stock around, substitute some of the parsnip for potato etcetera. I will post the curried parsnip soup another time.