Spaghetti Bolognese & SORTEDfood Giveaway!

Spaghetti BologneseSpaghetti bolognese. We all love it but lets be honest, 9 times out of 10 – it comes out of a jar. And I must confess, I’m guilty too. So I went on a mission to find an easy solution, and there was only one place to look, SORTED food!

Over the years they have built up a HUGE recipe archive, a fantastically funny yet informative, step-by-step YouTube channel and even have their own kitchenware! So there was no question they would have an easy peasy & super delicious recipe for spag bol.

Without further ado, here is what you will need to serve 4.

  • 500g Minced Beef
  • Olive Oil, for frying
  • 1 Onion
  • 1 Stick Celery
  • 1 Carrot
  • Handful of Mushrooms
  • 2 Garlic Cloves
  • 1 tsp Dried Oregano
  • Squeeze of Tomato Puree
  • 1 Glass of Red Wine
  • 1 x 400g Tin of Chopped Tomatoes
  • 400ml Beef Stock
  • Splash of Milk
  • Splash of Worcester Sauce
  • 400g Spaghetti
  • 80g Parmesan Cheese to serve, Grated

Firstly, prepare your vegetables. Finely dice the onion, celery & carrot. Chop the mushrooms and crush the garlic.

Next, heat a large frying pan over a medium heat and  season the beef with salt and pepper. (Before it goes in the pan.)

Add a little olive oil to the pan then fry the mince until browned. Transfer to a bowl and set to one side.

Spaghetti BologneseAdd the onion, celery, carrot & mushrooms to the same pan and fry for a few minutes.

Spaghetti BologneseThen add in the garlic, oregano, tomato puree and red wine. Stir to mix well and simmer for a few minutes to reduce.

Spaghetti Bolognese

Spaghetti BologneseNext, add in the chopped tomatoes, beef stock, milk and worcester sauce. Return the mince to the pan, season generously with salt & pepper and simmer over a low heat for a minimum of 1 hour – a few is better.

Spaghetti Bolognese

Spaghetti BologneseWhen you are ready, cook the pasta in generously salted water according to the packet instructions.

Spaghetti BologneseDrain, toss with a little olive oil and season with salt & pepper.

Spaghetti BologneseServe with a big dollop of bolognese and some grated parmesan.

Spaghetti BologneseAnd there you have it! Time, it would seem, does most of the hard work for you in this recipe. It’s not demanding in any way, in fact other than 10 minutes to get it going and cooking pasta at the end, it’s really not that taxing at all! And as for the taste? It’s gorgeous. The red wine adds a deep rich flavour to it and all that (now hidden) veg is great for you and your family! It’s a really good way to get some of the good stuff into those fussy eaters. (Trust me, I was one for years.)

Now, how do you fancy winning yourself some Sorted Food goodies?

I’ve teamed up with Premier Housewares who, alongside the great guys at Sorted Food, have developed a stylish, good quality range of cookware for the aspiring chef!

With everything from aprons to chopping boards, these guys have got all the basics you need for your kitchen.

Among them is a fabulous set of weighing scales…

Sorted FoodAfter using them, the first thing I noticed were that they react much quicker than other digital scales I have used, allowing you to be speedy AND accurate in your kitchen. Also, I like that it doesn’t come with the stereotypical bowl on top. I never use mine as I always just place the bowl or pan I’m using within a recipe on them, creating less pots for me to wash. This way, it also takes up less of your precious cupboard space too, bonus!

Also, a large lidded pan…

Sorted Food

These pans are great. Ceramic coated, aluminium pans that aren’t too heavy or too light – they’re just right. They can be used on all types of hob and have silicone coated handles giving you a good grip!

And lastly, a ‘pop up’ colander & steamer…

Sorted Food

This really is good! It goes completely flat for easy storage & simply pops up when you need to use it. It is great for draining pasta, potatoes or rice & works perfectly as an easy vegetable steamer by simply placing it into a pan, filling with water up to the base of the steamer and hey presto! Pop the lid on the pan – vegetable steamer.

Want to get your greedy mits on all 3 items? Well here’s your chance! The fabulous folks over at Premier Housewares have given me a set worth over £75 for one of you lucky blighters to win!

So, what do you have to do to be in with a chance? It’s simple – just one of the following 3 things:

 

1. Like the KitchenMason & Premier Housewares pages on Facebook then share the photo pinned to the top of my timeline

2. Follow @KitchenMason & @PremierHousewrs on Twitter and retweet the competition tweet on KitchenMason’s Twitter feed with the hashtag #WinSortedKM

Not on social media? No problem!

3. Subscribe to my blog via e-mail or WordPress  (on the right hand side of the page) and leave a comment on this post to say you’ve done so.

 

It really is that easy!

Competition is open to UK residents only and closes on Saturday 8th November at 1pm.

The winner will be announced on both Facebook & Twitter afterwards.

Good luck lovelies!

Tomato Soup with a Hint of Basil

Tomato Soup with a Hint of BasilNow, it may seem a little early for a soup recipe but in actual fact, it’s the perfect time of year to get started! With all the beautiful late summer veg in the gardens, it’s exactly the right time to start stocking your freezer ready for Autumn & Winter.

My lovely Gran is a very keen gardener. Every year she surprises me with how much she gets out of her garden! Recently, she’s had a lot of tomatoes ripening very quickly that she needs to get eaten. I thought I would help her out and turn all those beauties into a delicious soup for the both of us to enjoy.

Here is what you will need to make approx 6 portions.

  • 1kg – 1.25kg Ripe Tomatoes
  • 1 Medium Onion
  • 1 Carrot
  • 1 Celery Stick
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 tsp Tomato Purée
  • Generous pinch of Sugar
  • 2 Bay Leaves, each torn in half
  • 3 tsp Dried Basil
  • 1.2 litres Vegetable Stock *
  • 1 Bunch Fresh Basil

*I used 4 x Knorr Vegetable Stock Pots dissolved in 1.2 litres of boiling water.

Essential Equipment

  • Large pot with a Lid
  • Stick Blender or Food Processor

First thing’s first, you need to prepare your veg.

I removed the skins from my tomatoes. It’s totally optional but actually quite simple to do.

Simply fill a jug or bowl with boiling water and submerge your tomatoes for 30 secs or so. You should actually start to see some of the skins splitting.

Then, using a spoon – remove the tomatoes from the water and simply peel the skins straight off.

Tomato Soup

Tomato SoupBeing very careful, as they will be a little slippy, quarter the tomatoes and remove any hard bits of core.

Tomato SoupNow, peel & chop the onion, carrot & celery stick so they are all approx the same size.

Place the large pot over a low heat & add in the olive oil.

When you can feel the pan getting hot, add in the onion, carrot & celery. Give it a mix then cook over the low heat for about 10 mins until just starting to colour and soften.

Tomato Soup

Tomato SoupAdd in the tomato purée, the sugar, bay leaves & the dried basil. Give it all a good mix to ensure it’s all blended well.

Tomato Soup with a Hint of BasilTip in the tomatoes and mix it all together.

Tomato Soup with a Hint of BasilPop the lid on the pan and allow to simmer for 10 mins. Once or twice, give the pan a little shake to keep it all well mixed.

 

Tomato Soup with a Hint of BasilNext up, add in the vegetable stock and give it a really good stir.

Tomato Soup with a Hint of BasilThen pop that lid back on and simmer over the low heat for 25 mins. Give the pan a good shake a couple of times during cooking.

Tomato Soup with a Hint of BasilGive it a nice mix then find and remove the bay leaves.

Pull all the leaves from the bunch of basil and add them into the pot.

Then, whether it’s using a stick blender or a food processor, get blitzing until it’s all nice and smooth.

WARNING do take care if the soup is still very hot and never over fill your food processor as it has a tendency to explode!

I’ve recently obtained the new Stellar Cookware Stick Blender and  it’s absolutely fabulous!

Stellar Stick Blender

It breaks down into 2 parts for easy washing and storage and has a very comfortable & ergonomic grip. It’s also incredibly versatile with it’s settings – having a dial at the top to adjust the power and a turbo button when you need a little extra oomph.

Stellar Stick Blender

And it made mincemeat of this soup! Definitely a lot easier than making a huge mess trying to pour it all into a food processor. My days of that are now well and truly over!

Tomato Soup with a Hint of Basil - Stellar Stick Blender

Tomato Soup with a Hint of BasilLast thing to do is give the soup another stir and have a taste. Add more salt & pepper if you think it needs it.

Then either, eat it now or store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 4 days. Alternatively you could allow to cool completely then pour into ‘pour and store’ bags and place in the freezer ready for those colder nights.

Tomato Soup with a Hint of BasilThere’s just something about tomato soup. It’s always been my favourite, ever since I was a little girl. I have tried to be more adventurous and try different soup flavours but I always come back to tomato! A definite winner in my book.

What would be lovely is if you served this with a little cream swirled through to add a bit of richness. And a good chunk of crusty bread with lashings of butter smeared all over it! Aaaahh, I can foresee nights by the fire with a bowl of this deliciousness in the near future. Autumn is coming… get your freezer prepared!

I hope you enjoyed the post my lovelies.

Miss KitchenMason

Back To Basics: Salad

Back To Basics- SaladContrary to popular belief – I do actually try and make an effort to eat well. I can’t live solely on Chocolate Mousse Brownies, Millionaire’s Shortbread & Doughnuts. Despite the fact that I really want to!

Even though I eat far more now than I ever used to, I still have to ‘trick’ myself into eating healthy things. Take this salad for example. It’s seemingly healthy from the outside (not all that appealing to me if I’m honest) but when you look inside? There’s smokey bacon and feta cheese. These two ingredients make anything taste a bazillion times better! Helping me get my “5 a day” (something I find to be unrealistic at best) and making me feel better when I do ram a slice of Ice Cream Cake down my pie hole.

In the spirit of trying to be healthy, here is what you will need to make my “How to train a fussy eater to eat salad” salad.

(Serves 2 as a side for a main course.)

  • 2 Slices Smokey Bacon
  • 1 Whole Romaine Lettuce
  • 1 Sweet Bite Pepper (mini pepper)
  • 2 Large Tomatoes or 6-7 Cherry Tomatoes
  • 2-3 Spring Onions
  • 200g Feta Cheese (I use Apetina)
  • Salt & Pepper

For The Dressing

Back To Basics- SaladFirst up – the bacon.

There are tons of ways to cook bacon but I find this way to be no mess, no fuss & almost embarrassingly easy. Naturally, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

1. Line a baking tray with tin foil and lay on the bacon strips.

2. Place the tray onto the middle shelf in a cold oven & turn up the temperature to 200°C/Fan 180°C.

3. Allow to cook for about 15 minutes, (usually until you can just start to smell it) then turn each slice of bacon over and cook for a further 10mins or so until the fat is crispy. Yeah, non of that god awful stringy fat that a lot of people leave on – crispy. And don’t even think about cutting it off either – that’s where all the flavour is! Crispy.

4. Leave the bacon to one side to cool. When you have done, simply throw away the tin foil & put the baking tray back in the cupboard. No pots to wash either! Win.

Top Tip: When I am making a cooked breakfast on a Sunday morning, which almost always involves bacon, I cook a couple of extra slices in the same way as above. Once they are cooled, I chop them up and store in an airtight container in the fridge for a couple of days and then just toss them straight into this salad. Saves time & effort after a days work when, lets face it, we can’t really be bothered to to anything!

Onto the actual salad.

Back To Basics- SaladSlice the whole romaine lettuce into approx 1cm wide strips, then chop a couple of times in the opposite way to make the strips shorter. Dump it all into a large glass/serving bowl.

Slice the sweet bite pepper into small strips.

De-seed the tomatoes and slice the flesh into 1cm pieces. (If using cherry tomatoes, just quarter them & don’t bother de-seeding.)

Trim & slice the spring onions.

Top Tip: Find that you only use a few spring onions and the rest have gone bad by the time you go to use them? Simply trim and slice the whole bunch, allow to dry in the fridge for 20-30 minutes on a plate, then store in the freezer in an airtight plastic tub or plastic bottle. You can use them straight from the freezer in salads. As they’re cut so small, they defrost almost instantly!

Finally, cut the Feta cheese into cubes.

Place all the ingredients into the bowl with the lettuce & season well with salt & pepper.

Back To Basics- SaladTo make the dressing, simply add all the ingredients into a small glass or mug, mix together and pour over the salad.

Using two spoons, toss everything together in the bowl to distribute the dressing evenly.

Then serve alongside some sort of chicken or fish, or whatever you like really!

Back To Basics- SaladIt’s really not that difficult or expensive to make. And with the added bacon & feta – well, they say a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down, this is probably the savoury equivalent!

Back To Basics- SaladIt’s also a great way to clear out your fridge of all those leftover vegetables you don’t have enough of to do anything with.

I Hope you enjoyed this week’s post my lovelies, until next time.

Miss KitchenMason

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

Slow Cooker Pulled PorkThis is a recipe I have been trying to master for a long time now and I think I’ve finally cracked it! It’s so cheap to make, so easy to make & unbelievably tasty! Have I sold it to you yet? Good! Let’s get started.

Here is what you will need to make enough for approx 6-8 generously sized sandwiches.

  • 1 1/2 tbsp Paprika *
  • 1 tbsp Sea Salt
  • 1 tsp Coarse Black Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1/4 tsp Dried Thyme
  • 85g Honey
  • 2 tbsp/30ml Red Wine Vinegar
  • 2 tbsp BBQ Sauce
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Onion
  • 1kg Boneless Pork Shoulder Joint (Fat on)

*If you can, use a good quality, smoked paprika – it will make all the difference.

Equipiment

  • Slow Cooker (mine is 3.3 litre)

Let’s start with the marinade.

In a small bowl, mix together the paprika, salt, pepper, cayenne, garlic & thyme.

Slow Cooker Pulled PorkThen add in the honey, red wine vinegar, BBQ sauce & olive oil. Give it all a good mix and set to one side.

Slow Cooker Pulled PorkPeel & slice the onion in half then place at the bottom of the slow cooker, face down.

Slow Cooker Pulled PorkSlice the pork joint in half and place on top of the onions. (Leave the fat on, it adds a great deal of flavour & is easily removable once cooked.) Then pour over the marinade. Try to cover as much meat as possible – it doesn’t matter if some of it falls to the bottom.

Slow Cooker Pulled PorkLastly, pop the lid on and cook on low for about 6 hours or until the meat just falls apart.

Slow Cooker Pulled PorkWhen it’s ready. Turn the slow cooker off and transfer the meat to a large bowl.

Remove the fat, then using 2 forks back to back – shred the meat.

Slow Cooker Pulled PorkDon’t forget about those onions! Take them out, finely dice them (be careful, they’ll be a bit slippy) and add them straight back into the meat.

Then pop the whole lot back into the slow cooker along with those gorgeous juices. Give it a good mix and you are good to go!

Slow Cooker Pulled PorkIf there is a little too much juice for your liking – simply put the slow cooker on high but leave the lid off. Cook until it’s the consistency you want (it shouldn’t take too long) and stir occasionally.

Then serve warmed in crusty cobs or mini ciabattas with a generous helping of coleslaw. (Use gluten free is you are coeliac.)

Slow Cooker Pulled PorkDidn’t I tell you it was easy? It’s the perfect addition to your summer BBQ. Spend 5 minutes preparing it in the morning then leave the slow cooker to do all the hard work for you. Genius! I guarantee your guests will fall in love with both you and the pork!

Considering how heavenly this is, it really is SO cheap! I had all the spices in my cupboards already and the meat cost me less than £3. Now that’s the kind of maths I like to do. Bargain!

In other news, have I told you about Stellar/James Martin’s new soft grip tools range? No?Stellar James Martin Soft Grip Tools

Stellar James Martin Soft Grip ToolsBefore the cynical among you ask, no they’re not paying me to say this. I genuinely love Stellar cookware and have used their stuff since I’ve ruled my own kitchen! It really is fantastic quality. But then, you wouldn’t expect anything less from products that come with a lifetime guarantee though would you?

This range is no exception. Their soft grip handles make them extremely comfortable & safe to use. Not to mention how robust they feel in the hand. Just picking them up – you know they’re not the usual cheap cack you get from the supermarkets and that they’re definitely going to last. I for one, will be using them all the time! If you want to know more, check out the Stellar site HERE.

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this week’s post lovelies, until next time.

Miss KitchenMason

Crab Linguine

Crab LinguineYou may or may not be aware that I have been trying to train myself to enjoy the great riches of the ocean. I’m not fond of fish or crustaceans and I never have been, (if you can’t tell by the distinct lack of fish recipes on my blog!) but I can’t help feeling that I’m missing out on a great deal of fantastic food! So, as part of my ‘training programme’ I opted to try out this zingy crab linguine recipe from the awesome guys over at Sorted Food.

Here is what you will need to serve two people. (Easily doubled)

  • 200g (approx) Dried Linguine
  • 1 Red Chilli
  • 1 large Clove of Garlic
  • Handful of Fresh Parsley
  • 6 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 3-4 tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 Tin of Crab (170g) *

* It’s better to spend a little extra & use the jumbo crab chunks as opposed to the shredded crab

Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil then cook the linguine as per the packet instructions.

Crab Linguine

Crab LinguineMeanwhile… make the dressing.

Finely chop the garlic and the chilli. You can leave the seeds in if you like it a bit fiery, if not – take them out.

Then chop the parsley and add this along with the garlic, chilli, olive oil and lemon juice to a small glass or jug. (Reserve a little parsley for decoration) Season with plenty of salt & pepper and stir to combine.

Crab LinguineWhen the pasta is cooked, drain the water and return it to the pan.

Drain the crab meat and stir this through the hot pasta along with the dressing.

Crab LinguineDivide between two warmed plates and sprinkle with the remaining chopped parsley to finish.

Crab LinguineAnd that is literally it! It’s SO quick and easy to make and surprisingly (for me) really very tasty! It has a real ‘zing’ to it along with a little kick from the chilli, just delicious!

If you have never seen or heard of Sorted Food I highly recommend their website HERE. They have mountains of quick and easy recipes, most of which come with funny, yet informative, step by step videos on their YouTube channel HERE. I guarantee you will fall in love with these talented & fun, food loving lads!

Well, that just about wraps things up here. I hope you all enjoyed the post lovelies!

Until next time.

Miss KitchenMason

Tomato & Mozzarella Galette

Tomato & Mozzarella GaletteAfter reorganizing all my recipes on the site, it occurred to me that I don’t have many pastry main course recipes. So this week, I made it my mission to find a new one to try. After trawling the internet for a while I turned up a little beauty called the ‘Galette.’

Not something I’d ever heard of before, but the more I read into it, the more I just needed to make one! It’s effectively a pizza with a rustic pastry crust. Sounds delicious right? You’d be correct in that assumption. And I know what you’re thinking, tomato and mozzarella? That galette is just gonna’ be swimming in juices!? Wrong. If you open the door half way, you will probably panic when you see how much liquid is there. But stick it out until the end of the cooking time and you will see that all the liquid evaporates to leave an incredible, melted golden mound of tomato and cheese. Take my word for it, it’s just beautiful.

Here is what you will need to serve 1 as a main course or 2 as a part of a main course with a side. (Recipe adapted from Hip Foodie Mom.)

For the Pastry Crust

  • 160g Plain Flour
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 60ml Olive Oil
  • 50-100ml Cold Water
  • 1 Egg, Beaten for egg wash

For the Topping

  • 2 Balls of Fresh Mozzarella, Drained & Sliced
  • 2 Fresh Tomatoes, Sliced
  • Bunch of Fresh Basil, Roughly Chopped
  • Salt & Pepper

To make the crust, put the flour, salt & olive oil in a food processor & blitz briefly until it’s all blended together.

Tomato & Mozzarella GaletteAdd a little cold water at a time and pulse until it comes together to form a dough.

Tomato & Mozzarella GaletteTip out onto a work surface and knead briefly & gently into a ball.

Tomato & Mozzarella GalettePlace in some cling film, flatten into a disc and pop into the fridge to rest for a minimum of 30 minutes. Meanwhile, you can be slicing your toppings.

Preheat your oven to 200°C/Fan 180°C.

When the dough has rested, on a lightly floured work surface, roll out to a rough circle as thin as you can without tearing.

Tomato & Mozzarella GaletteLift the pastry onto a baking tray/sheet. Then leaving a 4cm/1 1/2″ gap around the edge, lay the mozzarella onto the pastry & sprinkle over a generous amount of chopped basil. Season with salt & pepper.

Tomato & Mozzarella GaletteThen lay over the slices of tomato. If you like, finish with more basil and a little more salt & pepper.

Tomato & Mozzarella GaletteThen roughly fold the edges up and over the toppings, lightly pinching the seams together as you go. Lastly, brush the crust all over with beaten egg.

Tomato & Mozzarella GaletteBake in the preheated oven for approx 45 minutes until the pastry is golden & crispy and the cheese is bubbling. Allow to sit for a few minutes before slicing and devouring like you haven’t eaten in weeks!

Tomato & Mozzarella GaletteI am always happy to try any variation on the humble pizza. It doesn’t matter what that variation is. Anything with melted cheese is bound to be amazing, and this is no exception! A beautiful flaky pastry topped with delightfully seductive melted mozzarella,  temptingly sweet tomatoes & the powerful flavour of basil. Just amazing. You should totally try one of these!

I hope you enjoyed this week’s post lovelies, until next time.

Miss KitchenMason

Tapas Night!

Tapas Night!This week, with the inspiration of a new cookbook – me and my good friends Emma & Sarah decided to team up and put together a Spanish Tapas evening. After much deliberation, we each chose a few dishes to tackle and spent a day cooking together in the KitchenMason kitchen. With beautiful dishes such as Patatas Bravas and stuffed pickled peppers on the table, the evening was a huge & delicious success! I would highly recommend getting together with friends and giving a Tapas evening a go. Not only is it great fun, it’s unbelievably tasty too!

Here are a few of my favourites from the day…

Tapas Night!

“Eggs & Cheese”

Serves 6

(Vegetarian & Gluten Free)

  • 6 x Eggs
  • 3 tbsp Parmesan Cheese, grated
  • 2 tbsp Mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp Fresh Chives, finely chopped
  • 1 fresh Red Chilli, deseeded & finely chopped
  • Salt & Pepper, to taste

Put the eggs in a pan and cover with cold water. Place over a high heat and bring to the boil then turn down to a simmer and cook for a further 7 minutes. Plunge into a bowl of ice cold water (to prevent the yolks from going green) and allow to cool.

Once they’re cold, peel the shells and cut into halves.

Remove the yolks and rub them through a sieve and into a large bowl. Add the remaining ingredients, mix well then spoon into the halved egg whites.

Present on lettuce leaves topped with a single chive (if you’re trying to be a fancy pants like me!)

Cover and chill until ready to serve.

Tapas Night!

Pickled Stuffed Peppers

Serves 6

(Vegetarian & Gluten Free)

  • 200g Cuajada Cheese (or any fresh goat’s cheese)
  • 400g Pickled Peppers (we used pimientos del piquillo)
  • 1 tbsp fresh Dill, finely chopped
  • Salt & Pepper

Cut the cheese into pieces approx 1cm (or 1/2″) long.

Drain the peppers from the jar and slit the sides of each one. (Deseed if they aren’t already.)

Stuff the peppers with the cheese then lay on a serving plate. Sprinkle with the chopped dill and some salt and pepper to taste.

Cover and chill until ready to serve.

Tapas Night!

Sun-dried Tomato & Goats Cheese Tarts

Serves 6

(Vegetarian)

  •  70g Sun-dried Tomatoes in oil (drained & 2 tbsp oil reserved)
  • 1 Courgette, finely sliced
  • 1 Garlic Clove, crushed
  • 250g Puff Pastry
  • Plain Flour, for dusting
  • 150g Goat’s Cheese
  • Salt & Pepper

Preheat your oven to 220°C/Fan 200°C and line a large baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or dampen slightly with water.

Finely chop the sun-dried tomatoes, set to one side, then heat 1 tbsp of the reserved oil in a large frying pan. Add the courgette slices and cook over a medium heat for about 10 minutes until golden brown on both sides.

Add the garlic into the pan, stir for about 30 secs then take the pan off the heat and allow to cool.

Roll out the puff pastry on a lightly floured work surface. Then using a 9cm (3 1/2″) round cutter, cut out 12 rounds.

TOP TIP!! Never roll puff pastry into a ball and re-roll. Always stack the trimmings on top of each other and re-roll or you will loose all those lovely layers within & it won’t rise.

Transfer the rounds to the prepared baking sheet and prick each one lightly with a fork. Leaving 1cm all the way round – split the courgette mixture between each disc then add the tomatoes. Top with some goat’s cheese, a drizzling of the remaining tomato oil and a sprinkling of salt & pepper. Bake in the preheated oven for approx 10-15 minutes until golden, risen & delicious!

Tapas Night!

Cheese Puffs with Fiery Tomato Salsa

Serves 6-8

(Vegetarian)

For the Cheese Puffs

  •  70g Plain Flour, sifted
  • 50ml Olive Oil
  • 150ml Water
  • 2 Eggs, beaten
  • 55g Parmesan Cheese, grated
  • 1/2 tsp Smoked Paprika, good quality!
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Oil for Deep Frying

For The Fiery Salsa

  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Small Onion, finely chopped
  • 1 Garlic Clove, crushed
  • Splash of White Wine
  • 400g Tin of Chopped Tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp Tomato Purée
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp Chilli Flakes
  • Dash of Tabasco Sauce
  • Pinch of Sugar
  • Salt & Pepper

To make the salsa, heat the olive oil in a large, heavy based frying pan then add the onion. Fry until softened but not browned. Then add the garlic, cook for a further 30 seconds and throw in the wine. Allow to bubble down for 10-20 seconds or so then add the remaining ingredients to the pan. Simmer for 10-15 minutes until nice and thick. Season with salt & pepper to taste and pour into a serving bowl.

To make the cheese puffs, Place the olive oil and water in a large saucepan. Bring to a rolling boil then throw in the flour and vigorously beat with a wooden spoon until a lump of dough forms. Tip the dough into a glass bowl and set aside to cool for a few minutes.

Tapas Night!Now, with a truck load of elbow grease, gradually beat the eggs into the dough. It will feel like the mixture is splitting each time but stick with it & it should come together. You are aiming for a ‘dropping’ consistency.

Tapas Night!

Tapas Night!Once all the eggs are used up, add in the parmesan cheese & the paprika. Season well with salt & pepper and give it a good mix. Cover & refrigerate until needed.

Tapas Night!

Fill a deep fat fryer with oil and heat to approx 180/190°C. Alternatively, fill a large saucepan with oil and heat until a cube of bread browns in approx 30 seconds.

When the oil is hot enough, carefully drop in teaspoons of the prepared mixture. Fry for 2-3 minutes – they should puff up and float to the surface.

Tapas Night!Allow to drain on kitchen paper for a minute or two and repeat until all the mixture is used up.

Serve the cheese puffs warm alongside the bowl of fiery salsa.

This one was a bit of a labour of love but totally worth it! I was intrigued by the idea of a savoury choux pastry, and now I’ve tried it?  I absolutely love it! Very tasty stuff.

There was one last little gem though, chorizo in red wine. This was, by a country mile, the star of the show! It was that good… I didn’t even get a chance to take a pic for you all! As a consolation, I’ve borrowed one from the internet and provided you lovely lot with the recipe so you can have a go yourself.

Tapas Night!

Chorizo in Red Wine

Serves 6

NEEDS 8 HOURS TO MARINATE

  • 200g Chorizo Sausage
  • 200ml Spanish Red Wine

Prick the sausage 3-4 times with a fork then place in a saucepan with the wine.

Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat & simmer for 15-20 minutes. Transfer to a plastic tub, cover & leave to marinate for at least 8 hours or overnight.

Reserving the wine, take the chorizo out the tub & remove the skin. (We found it easiest to use a vegetable peeler.)

Slice the sausage then place in a frying pan over a high heat. Add in the reserved wine and simmer until almost all the wine has evaporated.

Serve with cocktail sticks to spear.

 

Well, that just about covers our Spanish Tapas Evening. I hope you all enjoyed the post lovelies, until next week!

Miss KitchenMason