Mini Potato Skins

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Potato skins make nibbles much easier for a gluten free diet and you can fill them with anything you can think of.

The boys love Cheddar and ham, I am very fond of broccoli and Gorgonzola. However, the world is your oyster with these, as long as you have one ingredient that adds a little moisture such as cheese, sour cream, salsa and another that bulks it out, prawns, vegetables, egg, smoked salmon, leftover chilli, pretty much anything you can think of as a good combination.

Ingredients

1kg baby potatoes

1 tablespoon oil

fillings of your choice

Method

Preheat the oven to 190 degrees Centigrade.

Rub the potato skins with the oil and place on a baking sheet.

Bake for 45-60mins until cooked through.

Set aside to cool.

Heat the oven again to 190 degrees Centigrade.

Half each potato, scoop out most so the insides, leaving a thin layer of flesh below the skin.

Fill with your choice of filling.

Pop back in the oven for 15-20mins.

Serve hot.

Roasted Cauliflower with Mexican Flavours

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The cauliflower takes up the lovely spicy flavours and really shines.

Topped with a little sour cream and freshly snipped chives and eaten with one of my soft corn tortillas this makes a lovely vegetarian meal, alternatively, barbecued meat with a squeeze of lime goes beautifully too.

Serves 6.

Ingredients

1 large head of cauliflower

2 shallots, peeled and quartered

2 cloves garlic, peeled

1 large jalapeño, 40g, deseeded and diced finely

3 tablespoons fresh oregano, chopped

1 tablespoon smoked paprika

1 teaspoon chipotle chilli powder

2 teaspoons salt

60-100mls oil

Method

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Centigrade.

Remove the leaves from the cauliflower. Cut in half and cut out the stalk.  Break half the cauliflower into small florets.

In a food processor, process the the cauliflower stalk until couscous like size, pour into a roasting tin.

Process the cauliflower half, that hasn’t been broken into florets, until it resembles couscous, add to the roasting tin.

Process the onion and garlic, add to the cauliflower mix.

Add the florets, chilli, smoked paprika, oregano, salt and 60-100mls of oil to the roasting tin, mix very well.

Roast in the oven for 60-75mins, stirring regularly.

Chickpea Dosa

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These are a brilliant alternative to nan, paratha or chapatti, gluten free, spiced chickpea pancakes that everyone enjoys.

I regularly make a batch when I have some sag aloo on the stove, served with some yogurt, I don’t think food gets much better! I happily eat this for breakfast, lunch and dinner!

I have a particularly good non stick pan that I use for all my dosa and crepe recipes, if you find the dosa are sticking, grease your pan with a little ghee or butter between each dosa.

Makes 20 dosa

Ingredients

250g besan, chickpea flour

1/2 teaspoon chilli powder

2 teaspoons ground cumin

500mls water

salt and freshly ground pepper

Method

In a large bowl, weigh out the chickpea flour, chilli, cumin, salt and pepper, whisk to aerate.

Make a well in the centre and add a little water, whisk gently, bringing the flour in from the sides, continue adding water and whisking well in.

Set aside for 30mins.

Heat a small non stick frying pan over a medium high heat.

Pour a small amount of batter into the pan and swirl around, as if making a crepe.

Once the surface is drying out and the edges are darkening, loosen with a fish slice and flip over, cook the other side just until speckles appear.

Set aside in a clean tea towel and continue with the remaining batter.

 

Easy Soft Corn Tortillas

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Shop bought corn tortillas are nothing like these!

The mass produced tortillas that I can buy here are pretty similar to cardboard and no amount of heating softens them, these, on the other hand are soft and malleable and dare I say, very tasty. Did I mention,  gluten free too!

I use them for quick lunches with leftover roast chicken, fill them with barbecued meat, roasted vegetables and even fish! Breakfast with an egg, they are that versatile!

Test a piece of your dough on your baking parchment just to make sure it doesn’t stick and drag any helpers through to help, the boys love making the tortillas while I cook them.

I only recently bought a tortilla press, before that I found a couple of good heavy cookery books did the job beautifully!

The tortillas will keep for a couple of days in an airtight container.

Makes 12 x 50g tortillas.

Ingredients

250g masa lista, Mexican corn flour

50g butter, melted

300mls, warm water

Method

In a large bowl, combine the ingredients.

Form into a dough and knead lightly.

Divide into 12 balls.

Pop the dough balls back in the bowl and cover with plastic wrap.

Set aside for 30mins.

Heat a large frying pan over high heat.

Line the tortilla press with baking parchment, place a dough ball in the centre and top with another piece of baking parchment, press down.

Peel the paper off and pop the tortilla onto the pan.

Cook for around 60secs and then flip over and repeat.

Set aside in a tea towel and repeat using all of the dough.

Prawns with Chorizo, Garlic and Thyme

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This is a simple barbecue or pan cooked bowl of deliciousness for nibbles or a starter.

There is no added oil and the flavours of the chorizo and prawns are brought together beautifully with a few wedges of lemon to squeeze over.

Serves 4-6.

Ingredients

800g peeled prawns, tails still attached

200g chorizo, sliced thinly on the diagonal

2 cloves garlic, sliced

small bunch of thyme, leaves picked

lemon wedges to serve

Method

Heat a non stick frying pan or barbecue plate over a medium to high heat.

Add the chorizo and cook until crispy on both sides, set aside.

Add the garlic and prawns and cook until the prawns are cooked through, nice and pink.

Return the chorizo to the pan or barbecue, add the thyme leaves and toss with the prawns.

Spoon into a serving dish and serve with lemon slices.

Gorgeous Pink Beetroot Soup

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I have mentioned before the need to get some more pink into my household of boys!

I use chicken stock for this recipe but a good vegetarian stock works really well too and if you don’t have sour cream a wee swirl of regular cream is perfect.

Serves 6.

Ingredients

50g butter or oil

1 large onion, diced

900g beetroot, peeled and diced

1 large potato, peeled and diced

2 garlic clove, peeled and roughly chopped

1.8l stock

sour cream and chives to serve

Method

In a large pan, melt the butter over a medium heat.

Add the onion, beetroot, potato and garlic, stir well and cook gently until the onion has softened.

Add the stock and bring up to a simmer.

Simmer gently  for 30mins.

Allow to cool slightly and then use a stick blender to process.

Once you are ready to serve, warm the soup again gently, spoon into bowls and top with a dollop of sour cream and some snipped chives.

Chipotle Chilli and Lime Chicken Wings

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These wings are very, very popular in our house, possibly because the boys are allowed to eat them with their fingers but even the fussiest, non spicy food eater, loves them!

I remove the tips from the wings, I get great satisfaction from chopping them with my cleaver! Also, they look a little neater!

If you don’t have smoked salt just use regular and these wings happily cook on the barbecue too.

Serves 4-5.

Ingredients

1.8-2kg chicken wings

3 chipotle chilli in adobe sauce, sauce included

1 lime, zest and juice

2 tomatoes

2 cloves garlic

1 teaspoon smoked salt flakes

1 tablespoon brown sugar

Method

Combine all of the ingredients and allow to marinade for 12-24 hours.

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Centigrade.

Line a large baking tray with baking parchment.

Lay the wings on the tray, you may need two trays as you don’t want to over crowd them.

Bake in the oven for 25mins, remove and baste with the juices and the leftover marinade.

Return to the oven, baste regularly for a further 20-25 mins.

Remove from the oven and brush the wings again with the pan juices before serving.