Artichoke Heart and Beef Stroganoff

I have talked about it before but I often come up with these ideas that I just can’t get out of my head when I am trying to fall asleep. I wasn’t sure about this one though. I always paired artichokes with chicken and when doing some research didn’t find a lot of recipes that paired with with beef. But for some reason combining artichokes in a family favourite dish just seemed right. Not only did it turn out amazing it comes close to winning our hearts over our traditional version with mushrooms. And coming from a mushroom obsessed family that is a big deal.

Artichoke Heart and Beef Stroganoff

1 Tbsp olive oil
500g (1 lb) minced beef
1 onion, diced
1 clove garlic, crushed
400g (14oz) tin of artichoke hearts, drained
1 Tbsp cornflour
150ml low-sodium beef stock
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
3 Tbsp creme fraiche

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Pea Soup #SundaySupper

This week’s Sunday Supper theme is about a subject that has become very near and dear to my heart, Farmers Markets and Local Food. Over the past few years I have really been trying to focus on this idea of eating locally sourced food. Even in my business I only source my meat from local farms and am currently searching for a good locally source for my cheese. I believe one of the ways we can make our own part of the world better and stronger economically is by supporting local business’.

Today I am sharing a recipe that uses a vegetable that is used a lot in my house because it is my daughter’s favourite vegetable, fresh peas. Now I almost hesitate saying peas are her favourite because she only likes them fresh. If you give her frozen peas or peas from a can she wouldn’t touch them. I have 30 pea plants growing in the garden this year and while they have produced a lot of peas my husband and I haven’t been able to eat any of them because my daughter goes out into the garden and eats them off the plant. And since it is such a healthy food I don’t have the heart to scold her. So instead I bought some fresh peas from our local market.

I am also a proud stall holder at our local market on Saturday’s so I make an even bigger effort these days to buy from my friends on the market. I am excited to see what everyone else in the Sunday Supper crew has come up with not just because I love food but because I love seeing what ingredients are in season around the world.

Pea Soup

15mL (1 Tbsp) olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 rashers of smoked streaky bacon, chopped
450g (15 oz) shelled peas (about 1.2kg of pods) plus 5 pods
750ml (3 1/4 c.) water (or vegetable stock if you’re omitting the bacon)
Squeeze of lemon juice
Small bunch of mint, chopped and creme fraiche, to serve
recipe from The Guardian

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Pea Shoot Risotto #SundaySupper

Sunday Supper is celebrating all things spring and green. I am so excited, dare I say desperate for spring. Winter refuses to give us a break here in the UK which is making everyone long for warmer weather all the more. I just hope we have a decent growing year. Last year was so terrible. Speaking of growing today I am featuring an ingredient that I fell in love with last year and I was going to be oh so clever and show you how easy it is to grow it at home on your window sill. But sadly it has been so cold that the ambient temperature in my house has been too cold for my little pea shoots and I have no growth to show you. But I can tell you how to do it and you can have a try at home. The cheapest way to do this is buy a box of dried peas from your grocery store, but you can buy seeds from a garden centre. Pick a wide pot, fill it nearly full with good potting soil. Don’t worry about spacing, scatter seeds on the soil thickly. Cover with another inch of potting soil and water thoroughly. Pea shoots sprout in a week or ten days and you can begin cutting them, when they are three or four inches long. Cut it so it leaves some of the stem poking through the soil still and it will continue to grow.

But if growing them at home isn’t your thing you can buy them at the store. They should be in the section of the store with packaged greens, like spinach and other salad mixes. These wonderful leafy delights do actually have a delicate taste of sweet peas. We love them garnished in a salad, on sandwiches and also in stir-fries. This was the first in something like a risotto and I have to say it was a wonderful success. I wish I had fully read my own instructions and chopped up the pea shoots finer but it didn’t effect the flavour. Definitely a dish to eat and think about the impending spring. I can’t wait to start sowing seeds and organizing my garden. If you too are longing for spring to hurry up and get here I hope these Sunday Supper Spring inspired dishes help get you in the mood.

Pea Shoot Risotto

1 Onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp olive oil
300g (1 3/4 c.) Arborio rice
100g (1 c.) Sugar Snap Peas, cut in half
100g (3.5 oz) Pea Shoots, finely chopped
25g (1/4 c.) grated Parmesan cheese
1 tbsp creme fraiche
1 1/2 pints vegetable stock
Salt and Pepper to taste
recipe from Pea Shoots

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Gnocchi with Broccoli & Parmesan Cream Sauce

We all have days when we just need some comfort food. Winter often means days on end of cloudy grey skies that does nothing but fuel gloomy moods. So having a dish that warms the belly and the soul is a must for me. I was shocked to learn that my husband had never tried gnocchi before. As a foodie I feel I have some how failed him having gone this long into our marriage and not prepared it for him. I have actually added homemade gnocchi to my food bucket list to try this year. While I know it takes a lot of effort I hear that home made is an amazing must try. For now I will take the easy road because not only does it take less effort it is a simple weekday meal option because it only takes 3 minutes to cook.

It is simple meals like this that the I find can turn a gloomy day around. I wonder why comfort food does so much for our emotions. I have no idea, but all I know is ending a bad day with this put a smile on my face.

Gnocchi with Broccoli & Parmesan Cream Sauce

14g (1 Tbsp) butter
1 garlic clove , crushed
pinch chilli flakes (optional)
150ml (2/3 c.) vegetable stock
4 Tbsp half-fat crème fraîche
50g (1/2 c.) parmesan
250g (1/2 lb) broccoli florets
250g (1/2 lb) gnocchi

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