Entries tagged with “thyme”.


This delicious recipe from Plenty More by Yotam Ottolenghi has several steps, but the end result is well worth it. Hearty root vegetables are mashed with butter, maple syrup, spices and cooked lentils, then topped with shallots that have been braised in wine, stock and thyme. Cook’s Note: To make your own caster sugar, place regular white sugar in a spice grinder and process until it is very fine, about the consistency of icing sugar.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

I used a red wine from Frogpond Farm, which does not add sulfites to its wines. I also used Imagine stock and butter that contains only cream. Check your dry spices to make sure they don’t contain colour or anti-caking agents.

Brown shallots and then braise

Reduce braising sauce and add butter

Cook vegetables until tender

Le Puy lentils work best for this recipe because they hold their shape

Root Mash with Wine-Braised Shallots

Ingredients:

For the shallots

2 tbsp (30 ml) olive oil

1 1/3 lb (600 g) shallots, peeled

1 2/3 cups (400 ml) red wine

200 ml vegetable stock

2 bay leaves

1 tsp (5 ml) whole black peppercorns

4 sprigs fresh thyme

1 tbsp (15 ml) caster sugar

Salt

2 tbsp (30 g) butter

For the lentils and vegetables

1/3 cup (80 g) puy lentils

½ celery root (300 g), peeled and cut into chunks

2 carrots (300 g), peeled and cut into chunks

½ kabocha squash (300 g), or other type, peeled and cut into chunks

2 sweet potatoes (600 g), peeled and cut into chunks

5 tbsp (70 g) butter, diced

2 tbsp (30 ml) maple syrup

1½ tsp (7.5 ml) ground cumin

Salt and black pepper

Preparation:

Put the oil and shallots in a heavy pan and fry, stirring occasionally, for five minutes until well coloured. Add the wine, stock, bay, peppercorns, thyme, sugar and a ¾ tsp (3 ml) salt, cover and simmer for an hour. Remove the lid, raise the heat and boil until the liquid is reduced by half. Remove the shallots and keep them warm. Stir butter into sauce and set aside until ready to use.

Meanwhile, simmer the lentils in plenty of water until tender (about 25 minutes), drain and set aside.

Half fill a medium pan with water, bring to a boil, add the celery root and carrot and, after 10 minutes, the squash and sweet potato. Ten to 15 minutes later, they should be done.

Drain the veg, shaking off as much liquid as possible, and mash well with a potato masher. Mix in the butter, maple syrup, cumin and cooked lentils and season to taste with salt and pepper.

To serve, top the mash with shallots and pour sauce over the top. Serves 6.

From Plenty More by Yotam Ottolenghi

This is another recipe from the Barefoot Contessa’s new cookbook, Make It Ahead. It is very easy, nutritious and, of course, you can make it ahead. If you aren’t adept at making a good seal with the parchment paper packets, use a stapler!

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Use fresh lemon juice because the concentrates contain sodium benzoate. I use President’s Choice garlic-stuffed olives.

Place fish on parchment and add seasonings and olives

The fish will steam inside the parchment and be done in about 15 minutes

Herb-roasted fish

Ingredients:

4 12 x 16-inch (30 x 40 cm) pieces of parchment paper

4 8-ounce (250 g) boneless fish fillets, such as snapper or cod

2 teaspoons (10 ml) kosher salt

1 teaspoon (5 ml) freshly ground black pepper

4 tablespoons (60 ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice

4 tablespoons (60 ml) good olive oil

8 large sprigs fresh thyme

8 large green olives with pits

2 egg whites, lightly beaten

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 C).

Place one fish fillet on a piece of parchment paper and sprinkle it with ¼ of the salt and ¼ of the pepper. Drizzle 1 tablespoon (15 ml) each of the lemon juice and olive oil over the top of the fillet. Lay two sprigs of thyme on top and place 2 olives next to the fillet. Repeat with the other three fish fillets.

Brush the egg whites around the edges of the parchment paper and fold in half. Carefully fold the edge of the parchment paper under and around the fish to make a package. Repeat for the other three packages. You can prepare the packages and refrigerate for up to one day. When ready to cook, place the package on a sheet pan and cook for 12 to 15 minutes, until the fish is cooked through. Serve hot in the parchment paper. Serves 4.

From the Barefoot Contessa’s Make It Ahead


This recipe from Anna and Michael Olson Cook From Home is a great way to grill a whole chicken. Because the chicken is flattened, it cooks quickly and evenly. The marinade makes the chicken tender and juice and the herbs add great flavour both before and during grilling. Place the chicken away from direct heat to avoid flareups.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Look for a red wine with sulphite level lower than 10 parts per million and a red wine vinegar that does not contain sulphites. I used a red wine from  Frogpond Farm and Eden Organic vinegar. Make sure the spices do not contain colour or anti-caking agents.

Remove the backbone and flatten the chicken

The marinade uses fresh herbs

Remove the herbs from the marinade and place on the grill

Place the chicken on top of the herbs

The chicken takes about 30 minutes to cook through

Grilled chicken with scorched herbs

Ingredients:

1 2 lb. (1 kg) whole chicken

2 bay leaves

½ bunch fresh thyme

½ bunch fresh rosemary

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1/3 cup (75 ml) red wine

1/3 cup (75 ml) red wine vinegar

1 tsp (5 ml) ground cumin

1 tsp (5 ml) ground coriander

Coarse salt and ground black pepper

Preparation:

Rinse the chicken under cold water and dry with paper towels. Remove the backbone carefully using a boning knife and split each chicken in half lengthwise through the breastbone. You can also simply flatten the chicken by pressing down on the breastbone from the skin-side until it “cracks”, and cook it whole.

Stir the bay leaves, whole thyme and rosemary sprigs with the garlic, wine, vinegar, cumin and coriander together and marinate the chicken for 30 minutes, or up to 12 hours, refrigerated.

Preheat the grill to medium and make sure the surface is scrubbed clean with a grill brush. Remove the bay, thyme and rosemary from the marinade, and place them on the grill, then season the chicken with salt and pepper and place over the herbs. Cover of the grill and allow this to cook 8 to10 minutes (the herbs will smoke vigourously). Baste the chicken with half of the remaining marinade and cook 5 minutes, then turn over and brush with the last of the marinade. Finish cooking, about 20 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked. The juices of the chicken should run clear and the meat should have lost its “pink” look around the bone (check near the thigh bone). Serve hot from the grill. Serves 4

From Anna and Michael Olson Cook From Home