Posts tagged ‘leek’

June 1, 2011

Last Night’s Dinner: Leek, Wild Rice and Potato Cakes with Flageolet Beans in a Cider Cream Sauce

Sunday 15 May

It might not look like it, but this dish came about by wanting to use up various bits and pieces from the fridge and store cupboard. Potatoes about to go soft? Tick. Leeks starting to yellow? Tick. Half a packet of wild and basmati rice plus a few handfuls of flageolet beans malingering on the shelf. Tick and tick. A bottle of cider and half a tub of single cream with nothing better to do than throw themselves into a pan? No less.

Every now and again we love to make a savoury cake. They’re so easy and you can stuff all kinds of ingredients into them. To make these I boiled some rice and left it to cool, did the same with a few potatoes and then mashed them, and fried some finely chopped leeks in a little olive oil. Combine the ingredients together in a bowl with an egg and some salt and pepper, shape into cakes/patties. Fry them for a few minutes either side until they’re golden and they’re done.

I soaked the beans during the afternoon and then simmered them in plenty of water until they were tender. Drain, then add a glass of dry cider to the pan and an equal amount of cream and heat on a low setting for a few minutes. Season as necessary and add a little chopped parsley, dill or tarragon even. Serve with the cakes on top of a pile of beans.

March 17, 2011

Denis Cotter vegetarian recipes for St Patrick’s Day

It was a Denis Cotter veg-fest in the Guardian today, as the vegetarian chef from Cork City delivered three recipes for St Patrick’s Day. Each is a vegetarian dish using some classic Irish ingredients. First up is a braised turnip galette of mushrooms and chestnuts (here), then there is a cabbage timbale with tomato sauce and parsnip gnocchi (here) and finally, and the one I think I’ll make first out of the three, blue cheese potato cakes with bean and cider stew (here).

There’s always a fair amount of work to do in Cotter’s recipes – he’s not a one-pot cook – but it’s the combination of elements in his cooking that sets him apart. So you know that with the potato cakes it won’t just be the way the blue cheese and cider hang together well, it will be the addition of the rosemary aioli that lifts it to unexpected places. With the galette it will be the red wine sauce that does the trick and with the cabbage timbale it will be the tomato and thyme sauce – or perhaps the fact that the gnocchi is made with parsnip, not potato. It’s the addition of third element on the plate that makes the difference.

Happy cooking!