Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Fish cakes with parsley sauce

Fish cakes
250 gr salmon
400 gr cod
400 gr smokes haddock
500 gr potatoes diced
750 ml milk
6 spring onions chopped
Zest of an unwaxed lemon
Bay leaf
25 gr flour
2 eggs beaten
3-4 table spoon rapeseed oil for light frying

For the sauce
25gr butter
25 gr plain flour
2 handfulls of parsley

Steamed kale to serve

Fish cakes;
Boil the potatoes until cooked, drain and mash.
Put the fish in a pan with the milk bay leaf and salt and bring to boil. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
Take off the fish and strain the milk to a jug to use later for the parsley sauce.
Flake the fish removing the skin and making sure there is no bone left in the fish.
Add the flaked fish into mash along with chopped spring onions and the lemon zest.
Season and mash and mix up everything really well.
Divide your fish cake mixture into 8 and pat into circles about 2 cm thick.
Beat the eggs on a plate, flour in an other plate and the bread crumbs on an other plate.
One by one sit the cakes on flour first until they are all covered in flour.
Then sit them in the beaten egg and brush over the sides and top until it is coated completely.
Sit the cakes in the crumbs on the sides and tops do they are lightly covered.
If you'd like to freeze them you can wrap them in cling film at this stage and freeze.

Put a large frying pan on medium heat and add rapeseed oil.
When the oil is hot, flour your fish cakes, then put them in beaten egg and then add your fish cakes and cook about 3-4 minutes on each side or until crisp and golden.
Put the fried fish cakes on a baking tray lined with baking parchment and bake them in medium oven, gas mark 7 for 10 minutes.

Parsley sauce;
In a medium sized saucepan melt the butter over medium heat. Once butter is melted add flour and stir through until a thick paste forms.
Cook gently for couple of minutes.
Gradually stir in the milk. Add a little and mix and wait until a thick paste forms again, then a little bit and stir until a paste forms and add a little more milk and do so on until all the milk is used.
Bring to boil and simmer for 3-4 minutes.
Add chopped parsley.

Serve the fish cakes with steamed kale and parsley sauce.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Strawberry and poppyseed cake

I tried the BBC Good Food magazine's June 2013 cover recipe for my friends birthday. It was delicious very light and not so sweet.
I will post a link to the recipe when it is available on BBC website.
Mr round sandwich tin was old and bruised so I had to use my small square cake tin twice which made the cake look like a giant sandwich.
Icing was made of crème fraiche and yoghurt, I used Sainsbury's brand Greek yoghurt but didn't manage to get the consistency right, it was too thin. Next time I will try it with the Total Greek yoghurt which seems to be much thicker.

Saturday, April 6, 2013


This houmous recipe is from a cookbook of my mother-in-law which she got in 70's. When the houmous is made from dried chickpeas soaking the chickpeas  over night takes a bit more planning but makes a big difference in taste. However all the steps of soaking and cooking the chickpeas can be skipped if using tinned chickpeas and everything can go into the food processor at no time.

 250 grams dried chickpeas
100 ml tahini
100 ml olive oil
2 teaspoons paprika
5 gloves of garlic (crushed)
Juice of 3 lemons

Soak the chickpeas in hot water water overnight, make sure the water is at least 2 inches above the chickpeas.
Drain the chickpeas place them in a pan and fill with fresh water and a pinch of salt.
Bring to boil and simmer in low heat for an hour, until the chickpeas are very soft and can be smashed with your fingers.
Drain the chickpeas and let them cool to room temperature.
If you prefer a really smooth houmous then once cooled peel the chickpeas.
Chickpeas have a thin skin and it is easiest take them off when you place a single chickpea between your thumb and next 2 fingers and press gently until the chickpea pops and into a bowl and you are left with the skin in your hand. This may seem like it takes long time but in fact it only takes about 10 minutes and make a real big difference in the final texture.
Put the chickpeas, crushed garlic, tahini, half of the olive oil and half of the lemon juice in a food processor. Pulse and while the food processor is working add more lemon juice and olive oil.
Check the texture of the mixture and if it needs more thickening add more olive oil, if it nee is thinning add more lemon juice or if you don't like too much lemony you can replace some of the lemon juice with water and add water instead.
Taste and add seasoning and paprika.
You can reserve some of the olive oil to pour over the houmous for presentation.
Serve with chopped parsley and a sprinkling of paprika.