Brunch · Dinner · lunch · Mains

Pear & Dolcelatte Tart

pear-tart.jpg

I am sooo excited about this recipe! Obviously, anything with cheese in always appeals to my inner cheese monster but the combination of the tangy dolcelatte and  sweet and juicy pear is just delicious, and I can’t think of anything better to serve this festive season. I recently made a batch of these and froze half as they can easily be cooked from frozen in around 20 mins perfect for a quick dinner or when unexpected guests arrive!

Ingredients: makes 4 individual tarts

  • pre-rolled puff pastry sheet
  • 125g dolcelatte
  • 2 pears cored and sliced with the skins left on
  • 1 brown onion sliced
  • 4 tbsp. soft cheese
  • 2 big sprigs of thyme
  • 2 tbsp. pinenuts
  • 1 tbsp. honey
  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • 1 egg beaten

And how to do it:

Place the pears on a baking tray with the butter and drizzle the honey on top. Roast the pears on a medium heat for around 20 mins until the pears have softened. Remove from the oven, drain off the butter and honey juice and keep to one side then allow the pears to cool.

On a medium heat fry the diced onion and thyme in the butter and honey juice until the onion has softened and become slightly caramelized then allow to cool.

Dice up the dolcelatte and add to a mixing bowl along with the soft cheese and onion mixture, season with salt and pepper and mix well.

Toast the pinenuts in a dry pan until golden brown.

Cut the puff pastry sheet into 4 equal squares/rectangles and place on a greased baking tray.

Evenly divide the dolcelatte mixture and place in the centre of each puff pastry square. Top the dolcelatte mixture with the sliced pears and pinenuts.

Pull each corner of the puff pastry sheet into the centre of the square.

Beat the egg and glaze each puff pastry tart with the beaten egg.

Bake the tarts on 190 c for around 25 mins or until golden brown

Serve with the salad of your choice…dyl-icious!!

Brunch · Dinner · lunch · Mains

Fig, Goats Cheese & Caramelized Onion Pizza

 

Although I do prefer to go to the farm shop in Skipton for my food shopping it just isn’t always possible, it’s at least a 2-hour round trip which can drastically cut in to my cooking time. So, I’ve been shopping at Aldi quite a lot recently and I’m loving their super six fruit and vegetable special buys which are such good value and encourage me to vary my shop and not be so bloody predictable. This lead to my discovery of the fig! I don’t know where figs have been all my life, but I have been seriously missing out and it is quite possible things might just get a little fig crazy here for the next few weeks as I let my obsession play out.

Usually I like to make my own pizza dough but this week I tried Aldi’s pre-rolled pizza dough and must admit I am really impressed with it, not only does it taste great there is also enough dough to make 2 decent sized pizzas and its great value for money.

So here it is ridiculously tasty fig, goats cheese & caramelized onion pizza.

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 figs sliced into quarters
  • 75g soft goats cheese sliced
  • 75g mozzarella either grated or sliced
  • 1 small red onion sliced
  • 1 tbsp. butter
  • good pinch of castor sugar
  • 4 tbsp. pizza sauce (homemade or store bought)
  • 1 pizza base (homemade or store bought)
  • handful of fresh basil to serve (optional)

And how to do it…

Grease your pizza tray with a drizzle of olive oil and roll your dough out onto it.

Add butter, red onion slices & castor sugar to a frying pan. Fry the onions until soft and caramelized around 4-5 mins.

Top your pizza base with pizza sauce then add the caramelized onions, mozzarella, goats cheese and figs.

Bake the pizza in the oven at 180 degrees for around 25 mins or until the base is firm and the cheese is bubbly and hot.

Top with fresh basil & serve with your favourite salad…dyl-icious!!

 

Dinner · lunch · Mains

Courgette & Mushroom Parcels with Spicy Tomato Sauce

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ingredients: Makes 16 parcels. Serves 3-4

Mushroom Filling:

  • 250g chestnut mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 2 clove of garlic finely chopped or crushed
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1/4 cup light soft cheese
  • 3-4 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 2 tbsp chopped walnuts
  • drizzle of olive oil
  • pinch of both salt and pepper

Spicy Tomato Sauce:

  • 1 small white onion finely diced
  • 1 garlic clove finely chopped or crushed
  • 1 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 fresh red chilli finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli flakes
  • drizzle of olive oil
  • pinch of both salt and pepper

Courgette Parcels:

  • 3 medium sized courgettes peeled into ribbons
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • handful of chopped fresh basil

And how to do it:

First let’s make the mushroom filling…Heat the olive oil in a medium sized frying pan. Add the onions, garlic and thyme. Cook stirring occasionally until the onions are soft and caramelized.

Next add the mushrooms to pan as well as salt and pepper to taste and cook on low until the mushrooms are tender around 4-5 mins. Remove from heat and allow to cool for around 10-15 mins.

After the mushroom mixture has cooled drain off any excess liquid from the pan and place the mushrooms in a blender (or in my case my smoothie maker). Add the chopped toasted walnuts, Parmesan, soft cheese and blend. Personally i only lightly blend the mixture as i kinda it slightly lumpy but each to their own go for whatever consistency you prefer.

Next let’s make the spicy tomato sauce… In a frying pan add a drizzle of olive oil and diced onion then allow to soften for 1-2 mins. Next add the chopped garlic, red chili, chili flakes and salt and pepper continue to cook for a further 1-2 mins before you add the can of chopped tomatoes to the pan. Simmer for a further 3-4 mins. Then place tomato mixture in a large oven proof dish.

Now let’s make our parcels…grab 3 courgette ribbons and place them on top of each other in a star shape. Place 1 heaped tsp of mushroom filling in the center of courgette star and fold ribbon edges over the mixture to create a parcel then place the parcel upside down on top of your spicy tomato sauce. Repeat this process until you have used all your mushroom filling. (should be enough for around 16 parcels)

Top the parcels with grated Parmesan cheese and chopped fresh basil. Bake at 200 degrees for around 20 mins. Then grill for a further 3-4 mins or until the cheese is golden brown.

Serve with a nice rocket salad and enjoy…dyl-icious!!

Brunch · lunch · Starters

Mushroom and Walnut Pate

My husband, being the carnivore that he is, loves a good traditional meat based pate but quite honestly the thought of blended liver really freaks me out. I can’t bring myself to even try the stuff let alone start cooking and blending the livers myself (i’d do almost anything for the husband but this is just not one of them…sorry babe!)

Fear not it’s mushroom and walnut pate to the rescue! Not only is it quick and easy to make its also pretty damn great and can be used for much more than just a pate why not give my courgette & mushroom parcels ago.

 

And here’s how to do it…

Ingredients: Serves 4 people

  • 250g chestnut mushrooms chopped
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 2 clove of garlic finely chopped or crushed
  • 1/3 grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 cup light soft cheese
  • 3-4 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1/4 cup chopped toasted walnuts (retain a pinch for garnishing)
  • ciabatta loaf cut into slices
  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • balsamic glaze optional

 

Heat the olive oil in a medium sized frying pan. Add the onions, garlic and thyme. Cook stirring occasionally until the onions are soft and caramelized.

Next add the mushrooms to pan as well as salt and pepper to taste and cook on low until the mushrooms are tender around 4-5 mins. Remove from heat and allow to cool for around 10-15 mins.

After the mushroom mixture has cooled drain off any excess liquid from the pan and place the mushrooms in a blender (or in my case my smoothie maker). Add the chopped toasted walnuts, Parmesan, soft cheese and blend. Personally i only lightly blend the mixture as i kinda it slightly lumpy but each to their own go for whatever consistency you prefer.

Refrigerate  for around 30 mins before serving.

Finally toast the ciabatta slices, load up with pate, drizzle with balsamic glaze, sprinkle with toasted walnuts and enjoy…dyl-icious!!

This mushroom and walnut pate also tastes incredible with a little crumbled feta on top, obviously you can never have too much cheese!!

 

 

 

Breakfast · lunch · Mains · Starters

Shredded Gammon Lettuce Wraps

 

I am waking up this morning to beautiful sunshine and a pretty prominent hangover.

A quiet dinner with friends ended up with me crawling into bed at 3am which is  completely unheard of for me as my wine induced narcolepsy (as my friends like to it) usually has me curled up well before midnight strikes.

Needless to say all I was craving this morning was a crispy bacon sandwich with oodles of brown sauce. Thank god my husband came to the rescue with a much healthier yet equally delicious alternative…

Ingredients:

  • shredded gammon
  • 1/3 finely sliced red bell pepper
  • 4 little gem leaves (washed but don’t chop)
  • 2 pineapple rings (Dan used canned but fresh works too)
  • 1 green chilli, deseeded and finely sliced into rings
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • Greek yogurt

 

Fry the pineapple rings in a non-stick pack until slightly golden then set them aside to cool before slicing into chunks.

Add half the olive oil to the same pan and fry the shredded gammon until crispy.

In a different pan use the remaining olive oil and add the sliced green chilli around the edge of the pan (like the numbers on a clock) then add the peppers in the middle of the pan. Season everything with salt and pepper.

Turn the chillies after a minuet or once they are golden and a little crispy; repeat on the other side. Mix the peppers to warm them through but don’t forget to keep the crunch!

Then simply grab a lettuce leaf top it with shredded gammon, followed by the red peppers, chillies, diced pineapple and finally top with a dollop of greek yogurt, sprinkle of fresh chives and black pepper to taste…dyl-icious!!!