Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

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alan refail
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Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby alan refail » Tue Dec 06, 2011 6:28 am

On another thread HERE Ken said:
I want to get away from the traditional winter veg (ie cabbage, swede parsnip and so on.) as dinners are about to get boring I'm looking for something more exciting on next years plate.


Solway cropper replied
I guess it's the way you prepare food that determines how exciting it is, rather than the basic ingredients.


With these thoughts in mind I wondered if it would be a good idea to share our favourite winter recipes which do something more adventurous with "winter" vegetables.

Please post only those dishes which you have "tried and tested" and you enjoy.

I have a whole load of favourites which we eat regularly - I'll put one of our favourites in the next post.

Look forward to your favourites.

Alan
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby alan refail » Tue Dec 06, 2011 6:38 am

Cavuluciòre fucato

...or, if your Neapolitan dialect is a bit rusty, Drowned cauliflower.

Break as much cauliflower as you need into smallish florets. Soak a few threads of saffron in warm water. Squash a couple of cloves of garlic and very roughly chop into two or three pieces each.

Put some olive oil in a wide frying pan.

When the oil is hot, but not smoking, put in the cauliflower, garlic, saffron and its water and a little extra water and cover (it will spit!).

Simmer gently, checking that the pan does not dry out (add a little more water if it does). It should take about 20 to 25 minutes to cook.

After 15 minutes add some pine nuts and raisins to the pan (the quantity is up to you).
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby Marigold » Tue Dec 06, 2011 8:03 am

I fear that anything I suggested would be far too.... simple...Seeing the exotic ingredients in recipes here.. Limited both by lack of money and health issues. And by taste. Prefer very simple food.

Last week, I enriched a basic homemade cottage pie ( minced beef half because of date,,) by adding a bag of home frozen mixed broad beans and peas, and added carrots to the potato. Another variation is to slice the potatoes for the topping and layer with cheese. NB we don't prefry the onions and simply add a little salt and a couple of OXO cubes.

Made a great amount and have frozen two dishes and it is excellent.
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby alan refail » Tue Dec 06, 2011 9:45 am

Hi Marigold

I do simple as well!

Cavolfiore fritto

I learned this half a century ago from my Italian landlady, hence the Italian name. Just Fried cauliflower. She, by the way was called Imperatrice (Empress), but allowed her English friends to call her Maria; how boring!


Divide cauliflower into florets. Dip in beaten egg. Shallow fry until golden brown.

Goes very well with a simple sauce of minced beef, onion, garlic and tomato.
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby alan refail » Tue Dec 06, 2011 9:50 am

Another tasty one, this time from nearer home.

Cacen nionod

...or Onion cake

1 kilo firm potatoes
500g chopped onions
125-150g Welsh butter
salt and pepper


Peel the potatoes. Slice them paper-thin.
Line a cake tin, grease with buttered paper then line with greaseproof, to make turning out easier.
Layer the potatoes, then bits of butter, seasoning, then a layer of onion. Repeat finishing with a layer of potatoes brushed with melted butter.
Bake for 1 hour 200C 400F covered with foil.
For the last 10-15 mins remove foil so the potatoes will brown.

The cooking time will depend on how waxy or floury the potatoes are and how thinly they are sliced: use a food processor or mandolin (if you have one) to make paper thin slices.

Specially good with a green salad and a few good quality pork sausages.

If you don't want to use a cake tin and turn the cake out, you can cook it in a glass or metal dish and serve directly from that.

Yes, I know I've posted this before, but it is so good on a cold winter's day.

viewtopic.php?f=7&t=9570
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby alan refail » Thu Dec 29, 2011 6:37 am

Is nobody else going to reply?

Here's another essential in our house.

The best way to eat sprouts

Slice sprouts about 1/4 centimetre thick. Fry some diced bacon or pancetta in olive oil until crisp; add sliced sprouts and stir-fry for 3 to 5 minutes; add a little water, cover and cook until water has evaporated and the sprout slices are still firm.
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby Catherine » Thu Dec 29, 2011 5:31 pm

Lentil and bean Bake
180g Puy or green lentils
1 tbsp olive oil, 1 onion chopped, 2 x 400g chopped tomatoes, 300g curly kale, trimmed of stems and shredded, 2tsp Cajun seasoning or to taste, salt, 1 x 400g red kidney beans drained and rinsed, 100g grated reduced fat cheddar cheese.
Cook the lentils in 750ml water for 20 - 30 mins or until soft, drain and set aside.
Heat oil and cook onions and garlic until soft, add tomatoes, kale, Cajun seasoning and salt cook stirring occasionally for 10 minutes or until the kale is just tender, stir in the lentils and beans.
Spoon the mixture into 9 x 13 inch oven proof baking dish and sprinkle the cheese evenly over, Bake in a 190 deg C Gas 5 for 20 mins until brown and bubbling.

That is the official recipe I do a variation where I chopped courgettes, peppers, onions, broc, mushrooms celery and aubergines or whatever veg you have, I have put sweet potatoes and butternut squash in it if I need to or have some spare, Gently fry in a non stick frying pan once softened carry on mixing the other ingredients I make a large quantity for the freezer then I spoon the mix into dishes, top with cold baked beans then mash potatoes then the grated cheese.
Then when I need one I defrost in the morning and cook in the oven at tea time for 20 mins or so until bubbling.

You could also do this mix and fill sheets of pasta making vegetable cannelloni. Top with home made tomatoe sauce and a sprinkling of cheese and bake in the oven till bubbling and hot.
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby Catherine » Thu Dec 29, 2011 5:50 pm

My mother in law bought me Hugh F-W River Cottage Veg Every Day for Christmas so I am going to work through the book, though up to now it seems more of a summer recipe book that winter but I am only half way through reading the recipes. So we will have to see. (We are not vegetarians but do eat a lot of vegetarian recipes). Lots of veggies, lentils, beans etc. If I see any recipes worth posting I will let you know,

Q: does this infringe copyright
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby Nature's Babe » Thu Dec 29, 2011 11:06 pm

Learn to bottle some of your summer veg for a taste of summer in winter, I did ratatuille in kilner jars ... a real change and very yummy in winter.

very low slow roast tomatoes in the oven and bottle in oil

Runner beans pickled / bottled in a picalilli type sauce goes well with cheese dishes or cold meats

Steam parsnips till tender, mash with pepper butter and mace to taste, form into croquettes, coat with egg, then plain or parmesan crumbs,
If in a hurry bake in a dish with a butter / crumb topping.

Butternut squash soup - saute some onion add curry powder to taste and fry a little longer, add chicken or veg stock, add a cubed butternut squash and cook till tender, blitz with a blender add chopped coriander or parsley and serve with a swirl of cream. Variation, use prawn bachilow instead of curry powder and float a few prawns in till heated through
then serve.
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby Tigger2shoes » Fri Dec 30, 2011 4:24 am

I like spicy foods and make either tomato based veg curries or coconut cream based ones using up my chilli's that I have frozen from the summer , Also Bombay potatoes
Why only use winter veg, freeze summer or make up curries in the summer from the veg and freeze seperate meals for later in the year .
Also veg broths with barley makes a warming winter lunch .
Thick Vegtable tortillas , left to go cold with a winter salad or jacket spud
Also veg lasagne and other pasta based meals ....I love cooking and experiment with all different veg pasta or cheese based meals
I also have the hugh fernley book of vegtables its a good place to find new ideas
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby alan refail » Fri Dec 30, 2011 6:16 am

Yet another one from me! I made this to accompany the Christmas turkey, along with "The best way to eat sprouts".

Jerusalem Artichokes with olives and wine

...or, if you want it fancy Topinambours à la Barigoule. A good southern French peasant dish.

Chop 500gr of Jerusalem artichokes, scrubbed and/or peeled, into 2cm pieces. Put them in a pan which just fits them and add two tablespoons of olive oil, the juice and grated zest of a lemon, about a dozen black olives and 100ml of white wine. Add water to barely cover them tightly, bring to the boil then simmer till the artichokes are tender. Uncover and let the liquid evaporates and the artichokes are just starting to caramelise. Add a good handful of chopped parsley and a couple of garlic cloves finely chopped.

Serves four
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby Westi » Fri Dec 30, 2011 6:34 pm

Cheers for the Artichoke recipe Alan. I was thinking of posting for recipes that weren't creamy to use up an excellent crop of large chokes. I suppose you could put some passatta / tomatoes in as well. Salad and crusty bread to accompany - yum!

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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby Stephen » Wed Sep 26, 2012 8:19 pm

Back to the top as it is decidedly autumnal now.
I like the artichoke recipie Alan, thank you.
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby farmer jon » Thu Sep 27, 2012 9:10 pm

trouble is today that what are traditional winter veg such as parsnips,swedes,sprouts & savoy cabbage, are available year round thanks to supermarkets. I am a traditionalist & will only eat these winter veg from october to march. this way you look forward to them & never get bored. people today don't know that sprouts & parsnips exposed to frost have a much better flavour.
very few people remember the transition of potatoes in the shops starting with israeli new , egyptian new, cypriot, jersey royals,lincs & pembrokes . where has all the cypriot produce gone to ? you never see cypriot carrots in early spring , only tough old scottish "pony" carrots from store.
same with fruit, these "tupi" blackberries from mexico are like rubber! no taste,but they travel well. same as the driscoll raspberries, give me glen ample or tullameen any day.
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Re: Ringing the changes on winter vegetables

Postby darkbrowneggs » Tue Oct 02, 2012 10:23 am

I feel like the previous poster, by this time of year I am looking forward to winter stuff - I havent had any of these since last winter, and its really making me hungry thinking about all that lovely winter veg.

Chopped carrots with pepper and butter, and a few snippings of herbs
Buttered Parsnips - Parsnips gently cooked in the tiniest bit of water and plenty of butter till they almost dissolve
Frosted Farm Swedes cut in thick slices and cooked in butter till brown on outside and soft in middle - I can never grow good swedes in the garden
Celariac puree - can't grow that either, but organic farm supply nearby
Purple Sprouting
Potato and Onion sliced and baked with butter and a very little water
Gratin Dauphin
The first Brussels
Red Cabbage with cider vinegar and spices
Finely shredded cabbage steamed and mixed in with really fine lardons of crispy bacon
Cauliflower Cheese
Romanesco just lightly steamed - too delicious to mask its flavour
Artichoke Soup made with good chicken stock and served with good bread
Seakale steamed and served with melted butter
Baked potatoes, split and baked cut side down on a lightly oiled baking tray
Leeks sliced crossways and steamed

The only thing I really got a chance to freeze down this year was broad beans, and I shall "pop" those out of their jackets after steaming them, pour over a little cream and serve with parsley

Eating with the seasons means I am always looking forward to the next crop
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