we had some folks over for dinner last night and cooked up a middle eastern spread. some of it worked pretty well and some didnt... it's impossible to BBQ at the same time as trying to make other dishes in the kitchen. i had a flathead that I just cooked uncovered and it dried out. i should have followed my original idea of wrapping it in vine leaves with lemon. as it was, the red caspsicum sauce saved it. the kingfish steaks were crusted with coriander, salt and pepper, and they also got too dry. but otherwise...
- two kinds of roast chicken - one with a orange juice & mustard marinade, the other with honey, ginger, cumin and zataar (spice mix of sumac, toasted sesame seeds, oregano and marjoram),
- egpplant slices stacked with sweet potato and feta in the middle and pomegranate seeds and pine nuts on top, drizzled with pomegranate syrup
- beetroot (from our garden!) baked with balsamic vinegar, rosemary and garlic
- salad of blood orange, red onion, kalamata olives and spices (can't wait for our blood orange tree to start fruiting!)
- sauted zucchini from our garden
- labneh rolled in crushed pistachios (made by hanging yoghurt in a cloth overnight to remove the excess liquid, then rolling into small balls
- and this:
Sumac Roasted Tomatoes with Sweet Currants
halve 300 gms of cherry tomatoes
mix and add the following on top
- 1 tsp sumac
- 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 4 shallots, finely chopped
- bunch of fresh basil
- 10g brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 50 ml olive oil
bake on 140 degrees C for mins, then add 560 g currants and bake for abother 20 mins.
(I didnt have that much time so I baked for 20 mins on 180 and then added the currants and baked for another 20 mins). I baked them covered but I think I should have left them uncovered. very nice though.
Most of the above recipes were from "Purple Citrus and Sweet Perfume" by Silvena Rowe.
for dessert i made ice cream
Pistachio and Rose Petal Ice Cream
Beat together 1 egg (I had duck eggs for the first time ever so used one), 1/2 cup milk, 3/4 cup sugar, 1/2 vanilla bean - until the sugar is dissolved). (You slice the vanilla bean and scrap out the black 'dirt' inside it) Mix in 2 cups cream.
Refrigerate for at least an hour. You can put the actual vanilla bean in as it will add more flavour.
Remove vanilla bean and put the mix in the ice cream machine (oh yeah, you need one of them...)
Add 2 tsp of Herbie's "Fragrant Sweet Spices with Rose Petals".
Towards the end add 1/3 to 1/2 cup dried rose petals, 1/2 to 2/3 cup coarsely crushed pistachios, and 2-3 tsp rose water.
i have to say it was pretty yummy... i'll be making that again i reckon.