Thursday, February 18, 2010

whats cooking...from jamie oliver

grilled peach salad with bresaola and a creamy dressing

starter | serves 4
In Italy fruit is often grilled – one of the best things I had when I was there was simply grilled stone fruit sprinkled with vanilla sugar and served with ice cream. So delicious! Peaches, pears, plums, apricots, even figs, are all good for grilling and don’t just have to be eaten as a dessert. Here I’m serving grilled peaches with bresaola, which is very thinly sliced, cured, dried beef that you can get in Italian delis or good supermarkets. It’s salty, savoury and goes with the peaches like a dream. This is my favourite little salad at the moment – dead nice!
Preheat a barbecue or griddle pan until hot. Cut the peaches in half, then twist them to remove the stones – don’t worry if they break up when you do this. Toss them in a bowl with the chopped rosemary, a splash of olive oil and a little salt and pepper. If you’re cooking on a barbecue, throw some herb branches on to the coals if you like – this will give the peaches a herby, smoky flavour. Grill the peaches for a couple of minutes on each side until nicely charred, but not burnt!

Pour the vinegar into a bowl or a Flavour Shaker and add three times as much extra virgin olive oil. Add the yoghurt or crème fraîche and a pinch of salt and pepper. Whisk or shake until mixed together well.

Drape the bresaola over four plates, pinching it up here and there so it’s not lying flat. Place the peaches over the bresaola. Toss the tarragon leaves and rocket in the creamy dressing and pile the salad on top of the peaches. Drizzle with a little more extra virgin olive oil, scatter with the crumbled goat’s cheese and tuck in!

• from Jamie at Home
delicious digg facebook stumble upon


• 4 just-ripe peaches
• a few fresh rosemary leaves, finely chopped
• olive oil
• sea salt and freshly ground black pepper optional
• some woody herb stalks or branches (such as rosemary or thyme)
• 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
• extra virgin olive oil
• 1 teaspoon natural yoghurt or crème fraîche
• 16 slices of bresaola or Parma ham
• a few sprigs of fresh tarragon, leaves picked
• 2 handfuls of rocket, washed and spun dry
• 100g goat’s cheese, crumbled

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

lets cook!ratatouille.....

Every house hold has their own recipe for ratatouille, so does a friend of mine. Her recipe is very unique, because she fry vegetables separately. She told me that this will give the smoky flavor that you would not get from the the traditional ratatouille. She also adding tomato paste instead of fresh tomato or canned tomato, so the flavor is really concentrated. The long simmer on a low heat will reduce the liquid a little and make the ratatouille silkier. I honestly like to make ratatouille this way, yes it takes longer time to fry the vegetables one by one but, it is worth all the effort.

4 small Italian Eggplant, quartered and cut into 1" thick cube
2 Red/Yellow bell peppers cubed
2 zucchinis, sliced
1 small white onion, cut into half then cut into ¼" thick slice
2-3 garlic cloves whole peeled
1 can (16 oz) chicken stock
2 tbs Tomato paste
olive oil
1 cup roughly chopped basil
¼ cup roughly chopped parsley
Salt and pepper to taste

* Fry the eggplant, bell pepper, zucchinis, white onion and garlic in a little oil separately. So that the eggplant gets some color, the peppers and zucchinis get some chars, onions start sweating and the garlic is brown and soft and start to release the fragrance.
* Layer them into a cooking pot, add the chicken stock, and tomato paste. Simmer on low for 45 mins. Stir once or twice. Add chopped parsley, taste and add salt and pepper if desire (sometime the chicken stock is already salty enough)

I serve the ratatouille with simple grilled salmon and steam couscous. Special thanks for "CB" who kindly enough e-mail me the recipe years ago.

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