Thursday, April 15, 2010

Cupcakes a-go-go

I had a little book buying binge on Amazon. 5 new cookery books....exciting times. This incuded a couple of cupcake books as I had a job coming up that required the mastering of the cupcake.

The client wanted some fun pastel ones to appeal to all of the guests aged 6 months to lots of months. I used the Primrose Bakery book, their amounts were absolutely spot on, I'd highly recommend it.

I did some more classic ones for .....ahem....testing too :o)
These are now a Relish service, just starting the next commission......

Spice crusted potatoes

These little beauties are proving very popular at the moment. Either as a big buffet bowl, or with a tamarind dip as a little finger food-y canape wotsit.

Dead simple to do. If you 're making ahead then boil the new potatoes until they're cooked through, then leave aside to cool. Then follow Step1. but you 'll only need to put them in the oven for 10mins to crisp up.

If eating straightaway then:

1. Prepare spice mix....for 1kg of spuds use...
1 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp veg/groundnut oil
Bash the seedy ones up in your pestle and mortar, then combine with the rest of the ingredients.

2. Put your potatoes in the roasting tin then distribute your spice/oil mix evenly. Then into a hot oven they go for about 35-45 mins until golden brown.
Ooooh let's have a closer look at those tantalising tubers
We had them for dinner with carrot and coriander salad. Some lucky clients got them with 'Harissa coated legs of Loaghtan lamb'

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Ellerslie Rapeseed Oil - 2 recipes

Aaah spring is here and with it rain, snow and sleet. Lovely!

For my column I went off-campus at Ellerslie farm in Crosby and was joined by Pentti Christian who has been selling his rapeseed oil since September 2009 after 3 years of research and development.

Pentti is a sheep farmer by trade but had seen the value in diversification. The original plan was to grow rapeseed to produce biodiesel, however they soon realised that they could produce a high quality food-grade product from their crop.
The 3 years of development included growing test batches of rapeseed and building his own bottling machine.

The rapeseed is a fantastic multi-purpose crop. The seed is pressed and the oil used for the Ellerslie Oil. The waste is used as sheep feed as it has a great high protein content to keep them happy. And the ‘hay’ is used as bedding for horses, better than the usual barley hay as the horses won’t eat it.

Pentti tells me that the health benefits of this oil are fantastic ‘It has half the saturated fat content of olive oil, and much higher levels of omega 3, 6 + 9’ These are the fats that are great for brain function, immunity...oh and they make your hair and nails look great too, Pentti is a walking advert for it!

But I mainly use it for it’s great taste. It has a strong nutty flavour which works really well with Asian dishes. Has anyone else noticed how ‘nutty’ is the trendy flavour to reference??? I think Heston started it all and where he leads I am happy to copy.

Honey and Mustard Dressing – Pentti’s classic dressing

1 tsp honey
1 tsp wholegrain mustard
1 tsp French mustard
100ml Ellerslie Oil

In a jam jar, put 1 tsp honey, 1 tsp wholegrain mustard, 1 tsp French mustard and top up with Ellerslie Rapeseed Oil (about double the volume of the other ingredients). Shake vigorously (you have put the lid on, haven’t you). Tada! It’s done.

Garlic stir-fry oil – super simple multi purpose oil

100ml Ellerslie Oil
3 cloves garlic

Into a cold frying pan pour about 100ml of Pentti’s oil. Add 3 cloves of finely sliced garlic. Put it on a very gentle heat, watch it carefully and as the garlic just begins to change colour take it off the heat. It will keep cooking in the oil.
Use this oil to get a stir-fry started or as a garlicky salad dressing

Check out our video on for the full tutorial - it should be online by 16th April

Ellerslie Oil can be found at the following stockists:

Anagh Coar Butchers
Bry Rad Sexy Veg (Ramsey)
Butlers Choice
Deli @ 35
The Good Health Store (Port Erin)
Greens Restaurant
Isle of Man Farmers
Mostly Manx
Paddys Market
Peel City Butchers
Radcliffe Butchers (Castletown)
T & P Kermeen (Onchan, Port Erin and Andreas)
Tynwald Mills
W.E. Teare Butchers (Ramsey)
Willaston Butchers