Starters Archives

Potatoe Salad

A great accompaniment for BBQ’d meat or poultry dishes.. and so simple to make.

Ingredients

  • 2lb Yukon gold or salad potatoes all of similar size so they all are cooked at the same time
  • olive oil
  • seasoned rice wine vinegar
  • salad onions – chopped
  • Hellmans mayonnaise (or Best Mayonaise in the US) – same products
  • generous amount of ground pink Himalayan salt
  • chopped chives for garnish
  1. Bring the potatoes to the boil and simmer gently with a lid, for 30-40 minutes, depending on size until just soft through, but not until the outside of the pototao starts to fall away with the skin
  2. Meanwhile prepare the dressing by mixing 3 parts olive oil,  2 parts cold water, 1 part vinegar, plus 1 part mayonnaise into a very large mixing bowl
  3. Mix/Whisk until creamy, add more mayonnaise for extra creaminess
  4. add salt, mix very well
  5. Stir in chopped  Salad onions  and leave dressing to settle
  6. Peel and slice potatoes while hot
  7. Slice potatoes into 1/2 cm strips and separate slices while cutting, so they don’t stick together and can be mixed into the dressing more easily.
  8. Add easch sliced potato, one at a time, to the dressing in layers while still warm, turning potatoes  gently after adding each potato, until all coated by dressing, reapeat until all potatoes are added. – If dressing becomes too dry and further potatoes are still to be added,  pour a weak mixture of vinegar and water and optionally a little mayo and salt to the dressing, over the potatoes already added before mixing in the last potatoes. The salad needs to be quite wet when all the potatoes are added as the dressing thickens when chilled.
  9. Add more salt to taste.
  10. Chill
  11. Empty salad into a serving dish and Garnish with chives, some dill or some fennel leaves
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Chicken Ciabatta recipe

The pasta I was going to cook this sauce for had exceeded the sell by date, I hadn’t realised until the sauce was almost done, so I toasted some ciabatta instead, ditched the pasta and served the chicken sauce on the toasted ciabatta, with grated cheese on top. This is a dish I would Def do again.. much lighter than eating it with pasta.. and really really tasty,
  • 1 red pepper diced into small cubes, sautéd with olive oil and butter and salt and chilly seeds
  • 1 desert spoon of sweet chilli sauce
  • 1 soup bowl of small cubed  cooked  chicken
  • 1 pot of Delmaine pomodoro sauce
  • Grated cheese to serve
  • 1 large ciabatta roll – serves 2
  1. Heat the oil and butter in a frying pan
  2. Add the diced red pepper salt and chilly seeds and cook till tender
  3. Add about a tablespoon of water (or two, or wine even) so that when the diced cooked chicken is added it has some tasty  juices to absorb
  4. Add chicken and cook until all juices soaked up
  5. Add a little pomodoro sauce and stir in well, when hot add the remainder of the sauce and heat through.
  6. When the sauce is reduced to a thick consistency spoon onto toast, smother with grated cheese
  7. Meanwhile toast the ciabatta, and grate the cheese and serve
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Spicy Guacamole Avocado Dip

I Went to the “Friends of Kanaha” July the 4th party yesterday which in the States was what they call a pot luck party. Everyone brings a dish, any dish.

I brought my Guacamole and it was a hit!  I promised the recipe to someone there, so here it is.

It takes just as long to prepare as it does to take the ingrediants out of the fridge, add them to the bowl and mash them all together.

Ingredients

  • 2 ripe Hass Avocadoes
  • 1 heaped dessert spoon of Best Mayonaisse
  • 1 teaspoon of fresh lemon juice
  • 1 bunch of finely chopped chives (or a teaspoon of grated sweet onion, Maui Onion perhaps)
  • 2 teaspoons of Gardinis Ceasure dressing (optional, but adds a great touch to the final flavour)
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1/4 (or less) of very, VERY  finely chopped Habanero chilli  (to taste) for that smokey flavoured kick.
  • 2 tablespoons of crumbled feta cheese for the final texture
  1. Add all the ingredients (except for the Feta Cheese) into a large bowl and mash with a fork or potatoe masher (even put in a blender if preferred) until creamy.
  2. Stir in the feta cheese at the end
  3. If not served immediately, store in as small a dish as possible, cover with cling film so no air can  get to the surface of the  mixture (lay the cling film on the mix)
  4. Store in the fridge or on ice until ready to serve

Serve with fingers of cut vegetables or rice or corn chips.

Tip, try not to touch the chilli with your fingers while chopping and wash the knife carefully after use.

 

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Sauted Spicy Shrimp in Tarragon Butter

These a delicious, a tasty appetizer, fast to make and eaten even faster.

 

Ingredients

  • 6 large Frozen shrimp (with tails)
  • 1 teaspoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon iodized sea salt
  • 1/3/teaspoon paprika (to redden sauce)
  • 1 finely chopped fresh chilli
  • 1 sprig of finely chopped tarragon
  1. Melt butter in a pan with the oil (using a pan just large enough to lay in all the shrimp flat)
  2. add the chopped chilli and saute until softened
  3. add the seasoning, paprika, and tarragon
  4. Stir well and when on really hot and bubbling add the shrimp into the sauce
  5. Cook on med-high until shrimp turn pinkish (about 3 mintues)
  6. Turn shrimp over and cook for one more minute.
  7. Serve immediately or leave to cool and add as a garnish to a salad
Use this sauce (with or without the shrimp) as a topping or garnish for baked white fish..
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Spiced Roasted Nuts

Absolutely delicious served with beer or Gin and Tonic..

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons of olive oil
  • Handful of Walnuts
  • Handful of Pistachios
  • Handful of Hazel Nuts
  • Handful of Cashews
  • Handful of almonds
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper (use sparingly)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Paprika
  • 1 spring of Rosemary leaves (very finely chopped)
  1. Heat a frying pan and when hot add the nuts and toss in the oil to coat
  2. Sprinkle on the Cayenne and paprika and rosemary and roast on high, turning all the time, until they just begin to brown.
  3. Be careful not to let it begin to smoke, turn down if necessary
  4. Turn out onto paper towels to cool until just warm to the touch
  5. Serve with cocktails, wine or beer.

 

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Baked Camembert

This is a great party snack and a great dip

Buy one large round Camembert cheese

  1. Remove the Camembert from its box and wrapping
  2. Wrap in Foil and bake at 180 for about 20 minutes
  3. Remove from oven, place back in box, open foil and tear away surplus foil
  4. Cut diagonals into surface  of cheese to encourage dipping

Serve with chunks of french bread and garnish with caramelized onions or red current sauce

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Martys Orzo Salad

Ingredients

  • Cooked Orzo
  • Red Wine Vinegar
  • Olive Oil
  • Vegetables
  • diced bell peppers
  • diced scallions
  • grated gruyere
  • grated parmesan
  • toasted pine nuts
  • fresh basil chopped
  • ground pepper, fresh
  • cooked asparagus
  • sun-dried tomatoes chopped
  1. Drain Orzo
  2. Add the dressing to the Orzo while still warm, the Orzo will absorb a lot of it, so dress again as necessary until ready to serve
  3. Prepare the vegetables and chill separately until ready to serve
  4. Serve garnished with the toasted pine nuts
This recipe can all be prepared well ahead of time, Pesto can be used instead of oil and vinegar, and 1 cup of uncooked Orzo makes enough for two, and then some.
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Ritas ORZO Chicken Salad

This is a delicious salad and can actually be made with any pasta, not just Orzo
Ingredients
  • Cooked Orzo
  • 2 Chicken thighs, diced
  • 1 Courgette, diced
  • 1 Onion, diced
  • 1/2 Red Pepper, diced
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 tablespoons Olive Oil (more if needed)
  • Feta cheese, crumbled
  • 2 bunches Oregano, chopped
  • 1/2 lemon, juice only
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 3 tablespoons sun-dried tomatoes and oil, chopped
  • dissolved bullion stock
  1. Cook the Orzo as instructed on the packet
  2. Stir fry the chicken in Olive Oil
  3. Add pressed garlic, onion and pepper, stir fry until chicken cooked
  4. Add Courgette and stir fry until softened
  5. Remove from heat
  6. Add to cooked Orzo with a little bullion Stock and lemon juice
  7. Don’t make it too wet
  8. Stir in Oregano, tomatoes, pine-nuts and oil
  9. Gently mix in Feta Cheese and serve warm (Delicious served cold too.)
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Hummus

A quick and easy list of ingredients that just get blended together.

Ingredients
  • 3 Tins  of Chickpeas with the juice from 1-2 cans
  • juice of one  small lemon
  • 1/2  clove of garlic
  • 4 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2-3 tablespoons Tahini
  • cayenne pepper/chili to taste
  • salt to taste
  1. Blend some juice from the chick peas with the lemon juice, garlic, olive oil and Tahini, and seasoning to mix well.
  2. Add two cans of chick peas and more juice so the blender can blend easily, until nice and smooth and still a little too runny.
  3. Add third can of chick peas slowly (and more juice as necessary) to blend to the right consistency.
  4. Garnish with slices of chili, a slither of lemon and a sprinkling of paprika
NOTE : Having a few chunky bits in the hummus is actually quite nice so don’t blend the last lot of chick peas too much
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Natashas BUTTERNUT squash Soup

Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon Butter
  • 1 large onion roughly chopped
  • 1-2 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1 medium  butternut squash roughly cubed (peeling optional)
  • other vegetables (optional)
  • 1 1/2 pints organic vegetable boullion
  • 1/2 mik (or an extra 1/2 of water)
  1. Heat butter in a large deep pan and season
  2. Add onion and Saute while chopping and seeding the Butternut Squash
  3. Add Squash and any other veg (parsnips or carrots are great) and saute until they are slightly browned and beginning to cook on the outside
  4. Meanwhile make your stock with boiling water and warm the milk
  5. Add Stock and milk and simmer gently for  20-30 minutes until vegetables are very tender. Avoid boiling as soup may seperate if milk is used
  6. Take off the heat, and use a hand blender in the pan to puree the soup.
  7. Add more hot water to get the right consistency and season to taste
TIP : When reheating, heat with a lid to avoid splashing out
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Spicy CUCUMBER Salad

Serves 3

Ingredients

  • 2  large                         – cucumbers, peeled, halved, seeded, and thinly sliced
  • 2 teaspoons                  – kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup                        – rice vinegar
  • 1/2 cup                        –  water
  • 2 tablespoons               – sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon                 – crushed red pepper
  • 2 tablespoons               – finely chopped red onion
  1. Soak chopped onion in water to reduce strength
  2. Combine the vinegar, water, sugar and pepper in a small saucepan. Bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and cook until reduced to 1/3 cup (about 10 minutes). Remove from the heat and cool
  3. Place the cucumber slices in a colander and sprinkle with salt. Mix well. Leave for one hour to drain.
  4. Place unrinsed cucumber slices on several layers of paper towels, cover with additional towels. Let stand for 5 minutes, pressing down occasionally.
  5. Add drained chopped onion into the cooled dressing.
  6. Combine cucumbers and dressing in a medium bowl and toss well.
  7. Sprinkle with finely chopped peanuts (optional)

This is my version of Lindas Cucumber Salad – View original recipe at www.LindasFavorites.com

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