Archive for September, 2010

Posted on 15th September 2010

Grow | Coriander

By MEREDITH KIRTON

Coriander is the new parsley.  Many dishes cooked today use either the leaf, root or seed to add flavour, especially those with an Asian feel to them.  Also known as Chinese Parsley, it’s unfortunately not as easy to grow as parsley, and will need some shade in summer to prevent it from “bolting” or running to seed early.  The variety best suited for foliage is one called ‘Cilantro’.

The best time to plant coriander is now, in early spring, when you’ll get maximum foliage.  Sow seeds unto a light, well drained soil away from any fennel, as the two are not particularly compatible. Its flowers have the added benefit of attracting beneficial insects like hoverflies and lacewings, so planting it will be a boon in more ways than one.  Allow your plants to flower and seed towards the end of the season.  You can harvest seeds for curries, but do allow some to drop back down onto your soil as they will germinate again themselves when conditions suit again, and you’ll have another crop on the way.

Photography by SUE STUBBS | Blog designed by RED PEPPER GRAPHICS

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Posted under grow
Posted on 15th September 2010

Harvest | Coriander

By MANDY SINCLAIR

Storage:
Like most herbs, coriander does not store well and should be used within 3-4 days of picking. Wash lightly, shaking off excess water and store in a cliplock bag in refrigerator.

What to do with glut

  • Freeze:

Leafy herbs are not suitable for freezing as the extreme cold temperature causes the leaves to ‘burn’.

  • Preserve:

Coriander curry paste

3cm piece of ginger, peeled, chopped
1 red onion, chopped
5 garlic cloves, chopped
3 green chillies, chopped
1 bunch coriander, washed, roots, stems, leaves, chopped
grated rind and juice of 2 limes
1 tbsp ground coriander
1 tbsp ground cumin
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Place all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Season well.
Fill sterilized jars and cover with a little vegetable oil. Seal and refrigerate, alternatively spoon paste into an ice cube tray. Freeze overnight, until firm.

Makes 1 ½ Cups

Photography by SUE STUBBS | Blog designed by RED PEPPER GRAPHICS

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Posted under harvest
Posted on 15th September 2010

Cook | Coriander

By MANDY SINCLAIR

Steamed snapper with coriander salad

2 x 1kg whole snapper, scaled, cleaned
sauce
½ cup light soy sauce
2 garlic cloves, shredded
2 tbsp shredded ginger
¼ cup kecap manis
¼ cup brown rice vinegar
½ cup water
½ tsp sesame oil
salad
1 bunch coriander, leaves picked
4 green onions (shallots), sliced
1 long red chilli, thinly sliced
steamed rice, to serve

1. Pat fish dry with kitchen paper. Using a sharp knife cut 3-4 diagonal slits into each side of fish. Line a large steamer basket with baking paper and top with fish. Steam, covered, over a wok of simmering water for 5-7 mins, until flesh is white.
2. Meanwhile, heat all the sauce ingredients in a small saucepan. Simmer on low heat for 5 mins, until fragrant and reduced slightly.
3. Transfer fish to a serving platter and pour over hot sauce. Combine coriander, onion and chilli and scatter over fish. Serve with steamed rice.

Serves 4


tip ….
You need about 500g snapper per person, you can purchase 1 large or 4 small fish if you prefer.


try this ….
Fish & coconut curry
Heat 1/3 cup coriander curry paste in a small saucepan on medium heat. Stir for 2-3 mins, until fragrant. Add 175ml can coconut milk, ½ cup of water and 2 cups chopped white fish and simmer for 5 mins, until cooked through. Stir through ½ cup chopped coriander and season to taste. Serve with steamed rice.

Photography by SUE STUBBS | Blog designed by RED PEPPER GRAPHICS

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Posted under cook
Posted on 1st September 2010

Grow | Rhubarb

By MEREDITH KIRTON

Spring almost tastes like rhubarb…that deliciously fresh flavour that’s sweet but overly, fresh but not too fruity. It’s springtime when this perennial vegetable really comes into its own. That’s right, although mostly eaten as a dessert the edible part of this plant is the stems, mean that it’s a vegetable you’re eating! And a word of warning, the leaves are poisonous, so no matter how delicious they look fresh from the garden, you have to throw them away. Green stems on the other hand are quite safe to eat, though not as spectacular. The colour can vary depending on the variety, but if you really want red stems, you can always cheat by adding some food colouring to a jug of water and sit cut stems in there till they soak up the extra colour!

To grow successfully, plant rhubarb crowns in late winter or early spring from either crowns, which you can buy from bulb suppliers, or seedlings. They will need to grow for a few years in their own bed with lots of extra manure dug through. Start picking your rhubarb from plants when they are about 3 years old, choosing outside stems first to allow the new growth to still sprout from the centre. Applying pressure downwards should be enough to snap them off cleanly without damage to your main plant. Remove flowering stems with a knife or secateurs, as these will take away energy from the others and are not edible in their own right.

Rhubarb can grow in the sun or semi shade, but they do like summer water and loads of food, so compost, manure or apply granular fertiliser regularly if you want to eat them often! They are beautiful garden specimens too, with handsome leaves and stunning stems. Their season can also be forced early by covering their crowns over winter with an upturned pot to force through early growth…or you can by beautiful terracotta forcing jars to do the same job more elegantly!

Photography by SUE STUBBS | Blog designed by RED PEPPER GRAPHICS

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Posted under grow
Posted on 1st September 2010

Harvest | Rhubarb

By MANDY SINCLAIR

Storage:
Technically rhubarb is a vegetable. Only the stalks are edible. Field grown rhubarb as opposed to green house grown, tends to be juicier, more tart and less tender. When cooking rhubarb it is imperative to taste as it cooks to adjust sugar and cooking time accordingly.
Once picked, the stalks dry out and become limp quite quickly. Remove leaves, wash stalks and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for up to 1 week.

What to do with glut

  • Freeze:

Once stewed, rhubarb can be frozen in plastic containers for up to 1 month.

  • Preserve:

Rhubarb & ginger jam

Trim and chop 250g rhubarb. Place in a saucepan with 1 cup caster sugar, 1 tbsp lemon juice and 4cm piece of peeled ginger. Stir on low heat, until sugar dissolves. Increase heat and boil rapidly for 8-10 mins, until thickened. Remove ginger and discard. Spoon into sterilized jars and seal. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

Oven poached rhubarb

Trim and cut 250g rhubarb into 10cm lengths. Place in a small baking dish with finely grated rind and juice of 1 orange, 1 cinnamon stick, 1 split vanilla bean and ¼ cup of caster sugar. Cover with foil and bake at 180C or 160C fan for 30 mins, until tender. Transfer rhubarb and juice to a sterilized container. Store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks or freeze for up to 1 month. Use in a crumble, scones, cakes or on porridge.

Photography by SUE STUBBS | Blog designed by RED PEPPER GRAPHICS

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Posted under harvest
Posted on 1st September 2010

Cook | Rhubarb

By MANDY SINCLAIR

rhubarb tirimasu recipe

Rhubarb tiramisu

1 bunch rhubarb, trimmed, washed,chopped
¼ cup brown sugar
250g mascarpone
2 tbsp icing sugar
1 tbsp Marsala
finely grated rind and juice of 1 orange
¾ cup cream ,whipped
12 savoiardi biscuits
grated chocolate, to serve

1. Cook rhubarb and brown sugar in a saucepan on low heat, covered, for 15 mins, until very soft. Transfer to a container and refrigerate until cold.
2. Mix together mascarpone, icing sugar, marsala and ornage rind until smooth. Fold through whipped cream.
3. Dip savoiardi biscuits in orange juice, two at a time. Break biscuits in half anf place 2 halves in the base of a serving glass. Top with 2 tbsp of mascarpone mixture, 2 tbsp rhubarb, 2 biscuit halves and 1 tbsp of mascarpone mixture. Repeat with remaining ingredients to make 6. Top each with grated chocolate before serving.

Serves 6


tip ….
Assemble tiramisu ahead of time and refrigerate until ready to serve. Bring to room temperature before serving.


try this ….
The tartness of rhubarb goes beautifully with duck, venison and even offal. Pan fry duck breast or venison. While resting meat, cook finely chopped rhubarb in butter until just beginning to soften. Serve as an accompaniment.

Photography by SUE STUBBS | Blog designed by RED PEPPER GRAPHICS

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Posted under cook