the recipe sharer

Archive: Apr 2013

Mushrooms with Cinnamon

This is a very different and gutsy dish. Well worth trying.
You allow the mushrooms to burn slightly, then they absorb lots of lemon juice to create sharp contrasting flavors.
Serve these on a plate of “mezze” roasted vegetables

Serves 2

1lb mixed button and chestnut mushrooms
About 2 oz chopped flat Italian parsley, plus extra for garnish
3 tsp chopped fresh thyme
2 cinnamon sticks
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
About 2 fl oz (5 tbsp) olive oil
About 3 tbsp lemon juice
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 lemon, very thinly sliced
Salt and pepper

Heat up the oil in a large flat pan until smoking
Meanwhile toss together the mushrooms, herbs, cinnamon sticks and garlic.
Pour onto the hot oil and leave on a hot flame for about 7 to 9 minutes. be patient, do not stir or shake.
Now stir the mushrooms, allowing any left juices to evaporate.
Pour in the lemon juice, ground cinnamon and plenty of salt and pepper.
Remove from the heat.

You can serve this warm or at room temperature, just make sure you stir in the extra parsley and lemon slices at the last minute.
Adjust the seasoning again


Delicious and very simple. (Ottolenghi)

Serves 4

2 large onions, finely chopped
2 fl oz olive oil, plus extra to finish
2 tbsp tomato puree
4 medium tomatoes, peeled and chopped
4 fl oz water
about 14 oz medium bulgar wheat
1&1/2 tsp pomegranate molasses
1 tbsp lemon juice
6 tbsp chopped parsley
3 tbsp green onions, finely shredded, plus extra to garnish
2 fresh green chillies, deseeded and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp roasted ground cumin
about 4 oz fresh pomegranate seeds
a good handful of fresh mint leaves, some whole and some roughly chopped
Salt and black pepper

Place the onions and olive oil in a large pan and saute on a medium heat for about 5 minutes or until translucent.
Add the tomato puree and stir with a wooden spoon for 2 minutes.
Add the tomatoes and simmer on a low heat for a further 4 minutes.
Now add the water and bring to the boil. Remove immediately from the heat and stir in the bulgar wheat.
Next, add the molasses, lemon juice, parsley, green onions, chillies, garlic, cumin and some salt and pepper.
Stir well, then leave aside until the dish reaches room temperature or is just lukewarm.
Taste it and adjust the seasonings, it will probably need plenty of salt.

Spoon the Kisir onto serving dishes and flatten it out roughly with a serving spoon, creating a wave-like pattern on the surface.
Scatter the pomegranate seeds all over, drizzle olive oil and finish with chopped mint and green onions



Tomato and Pomegranate salad with garlic dressing

This is gorgeous, light, bright and tangy. Thank you to Yotam Ottolenghi.

Serves 4

1/2 lb red cherry tomatoes, cut into 1/4 inch dice
1/2 lb yellow cherry tomatoes, cut into 1/4 inch dice
1/2 lb plum or tiger tomatoes, cut into 1/4 inch dice
4 medium vine tomatoes, cut into 1/4 inch dice
1 red pepper, cut into 1/4 inch dice
1 small red onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 tsp ground allspice
About 4 oz fresh pomegranate seeds
2 tsp white wine vinegar
2 fl oz olive oil and a little extra to drizzle at the end
1&1/2 tbsp pomegranate molasses
1 tbsp picked fresh small oregano leaves, to garnish
Salt and black pepper

In a large bowl mix together the tomatoes, red pepper and onion and set aside.
In a small bowl whisk the garlic, allspice vinegar, pomegranate molasses, olive oil and 1/3 tsp salt until well combined.
Pour this over the tomatoes and gently mix.
Arrange the tomatoes and the juices on a large flat plate.
Sprinkle over the pomegranate seeds and oregano and finish with a drizzle of olive oil

Easy Crockpot Carnitas

I just love using my slow cooker and am always amazed at the moist, falling off the bone meat it produces.

Cook time  – 8 hours
Serves   10 to 12 people

4 – 5lbs pork shoulder
5 large cloves garlic
1 tbsp Kosher salt
1 tsp roasted ground cumin
1 tsp chile powder
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tbsp chipotle hot sauce (optional)
juice of 2 large limes
1/2 cup orange juice (freshly squeezed, preferably)
12 oz beer
1/2 cup salsa (Not too chunky)

Place the pork shoulder in the slow cooker. Roughly chop the garlic and place in the slow cooker. You can also rub it into the meat to get as much flavor as possible)

Sprinkle the meat with salt, cumin, chile powder, black pepper, oregano, cinnamon and cayenne pepper. Rub the seasonings onto the pork.

Add lime juice, orange juice, beer and salsa. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.

Shred meat with two forks directly in the slow cooker (or take out, shred and replace in the sauce)
It should fall apart easily.

Preheat the broiler. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place the shredded meat on the cooking sheet and pour a few spoonfuls of the sauce over the top.
Broil for 5 to 10 minutes or until you get browned edges on the pork.
Serve on tortillas with fresh cilantro, avocado and lime juice


Moroccan Spice Rub

Makes over 6 tbsp

This is terrific on lamb instead of the usual Dijon mustard, rosemary and garlic.
Also try it on chicken or chicken pieces, pork tenderloin and just about anything else. Fire up that grill and use it liberally.
Store it in an airtight container and use within 2 -3 weeks as the flavors will eventually deteriorate over time.

2 tbsp ground cumin (I roast my cumin and grind it so it is more pungent)
4 tsp ground turmeric
2 tsp paprika, not smoked
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
1&1/2 tsp salt
fresh ground pepper, a few good grinds
1 tsp Chile flakes, more or less depending on your heat tolerance

Combine and store in an airtight container for up to a few weeks if not using right away.

Depending on how much meat you have really depends on how much rub you use.


Roasted black grapes!


These are gorgeous spooned over a  double cream Brie or a St Andre triple cream on a cracker!!

Preheat the oven to 425 F

1 heaping cup of sweet black seedless grapes, rinsed and dried
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp white Balsamic vinegar
juice of half a small lemon
salt and freshly cracked black pepper
fresh thyme leaves

Toss the whole grapes with salt and pepper, a little olive oil, white balsamic, a splash of lemon juice and fresh thyme.
Toss everything together and spread it out on a baking sheet.
Roast the whole lot in a hot oven for about 15 minutes, giving the pan a shake a couple of times during the cooking.
It will end up slightly squishy and shrivelled with an intense grape flavor and a beautifully sweet sauce.

Transfer to a pretty serving dish, making sure you get all the good sauce and serve with cheese and plain crackers or crusty bread.