This is a lovely lemony dish, good as a side-serving with sausages and mash. It could be served at room temperature with bread for a light lunch.
- 500g leeks, sliced
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 carrot, cut in half lengthways then thinly sliced
- 1 tbsp basmati rice
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 240 ml hot water
- 1 tsp sugar, or date syrup
- juice of 1 lemon
- salt and pepper
- In a wide heavy frying-pan, heat the oil over a medium heat and fry the onions and carrots for 3 minutes or so. Then add the leeks and rice, and stir to combine.
- Add the hot water, lemon juice, sugar, salt and pepper, and stir again.
- Cover the pan and simmer over a low heat for around 20 minutes. Set aside to cool with the lid on.
This is good garnished with chopped parsley.
I was a bit late in thinning my carrots this year, so I have a lot of finger-sized carrots. I used a Moroccan-style dressing for a delicious side-dish.
- 200g finger-sized carrots
- 1/2 tsp toasted ground cumin
- 1 small clove of garlic
- juice of around 1/2 small lemon
- 2 tsp olive oil
- a tiny bit of honey, to taste
- coriander leaves
- Clean the carrots and boil them for around 5 minutes, until tender. Set aside to cool a bit
- In a pestle and mortar, crush the clove of garlic with a pinch of salt and the cumin, then add the lemon juice, honey and olive oil.
- Pour the dressing over the warm carrots and coriander leaves, mixing well.
Another Saturday evening cocktail with gin. Still working through the gin gifts from last Christmas. This time I used the Ramsbury gin from my brother.
- 8 to 10 fresh mint leaves plus a separate wee sprig for a garnish
- 1/4 floz (1 tsp+) fresh lime juice
- 1/4 floz (1 tsp+) fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp caster sugar
- 2 floz (50ml) gin
- Put the mint, lemon, lime and sugar in the bottom of a tumbler and crush them together
- Add ice, and then the gin.
- Add a garnish of mint
This is an important sauce at this time of year, when asparagus is in the shops, the sun is shining, and a light supper is called for. Hollandaise sauce is the perfect method to help butter and lemon juice to stick to food, just thickened with egg yolk.
- 150 g unsalted butter
- 2 large egg yolks
- 2 teaspoons of white wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons of lemon juice
- Salt and pepper
- Put the butter in a small pan over low heat, and as soon as it has melted, take it off the heat.
- In another pan, half fill with boiling water, and put a small trivet in the bottom. Put over a low flame so the water stays hot.
- In a heat-proof bowl, beat the egg yolks with the vinegar, and sit them over the boiling water.
- Straight away, start pouring in the molten butter in a slow stream, beating the eggs all the time. A small balloon whisk is ideal.
- The sauce will be quite thick; add the lemon juice and keep beating, and season with salt and pepper.
You can vary the lemon juice, salt and pepper to your taste.
I was looking through my old recipe book, which I have had since around 1990, for keeping notes. This is my recipe for lemon curd. It is a very basic recipe. You can add the juice of other citrous fruit but actually, lemon is still the best.
- Juice of 2 lemons
- 50g butter
- 2 eggs
- 250g caster sugar
- Beat the eggs
- Put all the ingredients in a double pan (one pan sits on top of the other, boiling water in the bottom pan)
- Heat very gently, stirring all the time, until the mixture is fully blended and becoming thick.
- Pour into clean jam-jars.
After Christmas, I have been taking stock of all our left-overs. We must have been expecting a frenzy of people wanting tangerines, gin & tonic, and fresh ginger.
I made this mixed fruit marmalade with all the citrus fruit. Still to work out what to do with a huge bag of fresh ginger.
- Tangerines, Limes, Lemons, Oranges, Grapefruit, combined = 1.4 kg
- 1.4 kg jam sugar
- 2.8 litres of water
- Peel the tangerines, and slice the peel into thin shreds. Put this in a wee muslin bag
- Chop all the fruit up coarsely, with the peel on – slicing it works well.
- Put the wee bag of peel and the fruit into a large pan with the water, and bring to the simmer, cook for 2 hours. Remove the wee muslin bag about half way through.
- Strain the mixture through a jelly bag, and measure the juice – if it is more than 1.4 litres, put it into the jam pan and bring to the boil and reduce.
- Add the sugar, dissolve it, and bring to the boil. I use a thermometer to get to jam temperature, then I hold the stirring spoon horizontally to see if the drips start to set and combine together (flake test)
- Skim off any foam, add the shredded peel, and let the mixture start to cool. Pour into clean warmed jars. (I warm the clean jars in the oven).