Stewed Blueberries with Bay Custard and Gin

This is a pretty wicked Summer dessert, definitely for hot Summer days. The beauty of it is that the custard and blueberries can be prepared ahead of time – eg the day before – and then it takes but a few minutes for the dessert to come together.

As the title suggests, blueberries, slightly stewed, are served with icecream, a bay-flavoured custard, and savoiardi biscuits soaked in gin, rosewater and blueberry syrup. It sounds amazing, right? And it is (the gin-soaked biscuits are out of this world), but the title belies the ease with which this dish is created. Best to note that it is an adult dessert only!

Of course, it is an Ottolenghi dessert, from his book Plenty More which we are trying to cook all the way through. Note that I often massage the recipes to suit our preferences and what is available from our garden, fridge and pantry. For the original recipes, check his books and his Guardian column. In the recipe below we have substituted a custard made with custard powder for the egg-based one, as we don’t cook with eggs. It sounds horrific, I know, but I assure you it tastes just as good. Feel free to use your favourite method.

Also, blackberries are originally used by Ottolenghi but they are notoriously difficult to find here, so we have used blueberries. It might be Ok to use frozen blackberries – but warm them through with the sugar rather than cook them.

Similar recipes include Strawberry and Black Pepper Icecream, Poached Oranges with Vanilla Ricotta, and Sweet Rhubarb with Cloves and Black Pepper.

Browse all of our Blueberry recipes and all of our Desserts. Our Ottolenghi dishes from Plenty More are here. We have written about our experiences cooking through this book. Or explore our Late Summer recipes.

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Pommes de Terre Maxim | Crispy Potatoes Maxim

It was much more common a decade or two ago to bake potatoes, usually sliced, with some combination of butter, cream and cheese. I guess times have changed and our weather isn’t cold enough for long enough for these dishes to still grace our tables regularly. But the recipes are worth having on hand – when guests let you know they will be arriving for a meal in less than an hour, when the weather IS cold enough to freeze the tip of your nose, and for, well, when nothing but some good old fashioned potato is going to satisfy your need for comfort.

Today is a very simple recipe – slice peel potatoes, mix with melted butter, layer on a tray and bake till crispy. We are adding it to our raft of baked potato recipes.I loved French food when I was working in France. Pommes de Terre Maxim is such a simple dish but it is oh so special. Don’t just keep it for Winter – it works well for any Sunday lunch, and even in the cooler days of Summer and into Autumn.

Similar dishes include Garlic Herb Potatoes, Batata Hara (Lebanese Roasted Potatoes), Creamy Potato Cheese Gratin, Potato Bake with CheddarGratin Dauphinois, and Potatoes Baked with Cumin and Tomatoes.

Browse all of our Potato recipes and our French recipes. Check out our other Potato Bakes and explore other Mid Winter dishes too.

This recipe is one of the vegetarian recipes from our first blog which was in existence from 1995 – 2006.  You can find other recipes from that blog in the Retro Recipes series.

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Creamy Baked Sweet Potato and Gratineed Sweet Potato

Ottolenghi has a beautiful Sweet Potato Gratin in his book Ottolenghi. The dish is beautiful, the sweet potato soft, so tender. The success of the dish is the arrangement of a lot of sweet potatoes, overlapping, in a baking dish. What Ottolenghi doesn’t say in the recipe is that it works for just 1 sweet potato as well. Using a small amount of sweet potato means that it is not gratineed, but it is beautiful, tender with a crispy crust.

This is a great dish for Thanksgiving, if you celebrate that US festival. Other Thanksgiving recipes are here.

Are you looking for Sweet Potato dishes? Read about Sweet Potatoes here. And then try Roasted Sweet Potato and Fresh Figs, Caramelised Sweet Potatoes, Potato and Sweet Potato Spicy Curry, and Sweet Potato Wedges with Creme Fraiche Dressing.

What about trying more Gratin dishes? Try Creamy Bake of Carrots and Parsnips, Baked Pasta with Tomatoes and Mozzarella, Potato and Cheddar Gratin, Gratin of Potatoes and Zucchini with Thyme, and Pomodori Gratinati – Tomatoes Gratineed with Cheese.

For all Sweet Potato recipes click here. Browse all of our Ottolenghi recipes, and all Baked recipes. Or find inspiration in our Late Autumn recipes.

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Tomato and Pomegranate Salad

From Plenty More, Ottolenghi comes up with a cracker tomato salad with hints of the Middle East.

Who can go past a tomato salad in late summer or autumn when the tomatoes are the sweetest and juiciest? And to celebrate the arrival of Autumn and it’s change in colours, Ottolenghi has this cheery bright red salad that combines the sweetness of the tomatoes with the sour-sweetness of the pomegranates.

The salad is best made when pomegranates are in season and beautiful tomatoes are available.

Are you after Pomegranate recipes? Why not make your own Pomegranate Molasses and Pomegranate Honey. Or try Green Olive, Walnut, Pistachio and Pomegranate Salad, Semi Dried Tomatoes with Pomegranate Molasses, and Crab Apple and Pomegranate Jelly.

You might want to try these Tomato Salads as well: Simple Tomato and Bread Salad, Bok Choy with Capers and Tomatoes, the Best Tomato Salad Recipe, and Simple Salads from Elizabeth David. We adore a Simple Tomato Salad, and my Mother’s German tomato and cucumber salad with cream.

All of our Tomato Salads are here and all of our Pomegranate dishes here. Or browse all of our many Salads. Alternatively, explore our Mid Autumn dishes.

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Sticky Balsamic Sweet Potatoes with Orange Bitters

Some of Ottolenghi’s dishes are no-brainers. Just tossing some herbs and easy ingredients with some roasted vegetable or carefully steamed grain. In these it is the combination of the ingredients that make exceptional dishes. But others take time, effort and care. While I prefer the first, the arrival of flavours in the various processes of the second can be a matter of awe.

This dish is definitely of the second variety. It is a great dish. The glaze of a reduced, sticky balsamic with orange juice and bitters caramelises as it roasts. The sweet potatoes are left sticky and delicious. Add to the equation the roasted garlic and the sage and thyme leaves and this is a dish to impress.

This is a great dish for Thanksgiving, if you celebrate that US festival. Other Thanksgiving recipes are here.

Similar recipes include Fruit Flavoured Vinegars, Roasted Sweet Potato and Fresh Figs, Madras Curry of Sweet Potato, Eggplant and Spinach, and Creamy Baked Sweet Potato.

All of our Sweet Potato recipes are here. Or browse our Ottolenghi recipes. Be inspired by our Mid Autumn food.

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Smashed Garlic and Ginger Cucumber Salad

Serve as part of a summery luncheon spread. Yum!

At Xmas the fridge fills with all things wonderful, the exotic and the common. And then I spend the next weeks slowly working through the food left in the fridge after cooking a xmas meal for  the family.

This morning I am working with some pre-cooked white peas and cucumbers. The white peas were turned into a wonderful curry – North Indian in style with (seemingly) a million spices  and a tomato-y gravy.

It needed something light and airy to go with it, something to lift the “groundedness” of it, to bring a little tang and bite, to cut through the deliciousness but heaviness of that sauce.

Often in India a small bowl with pieces of raw onion, cucumber, maybe tomato, will be served with a curry for this same reason. The juxtaposition of the two types of tastes is amazing. But I opted for a cucumber salad that is almost pickled, and one which has the same bang and bite as the traditional accompaniments in India. Maybe more so as it also has some raw garlic!

Similar recipes include Cucumber, Feta, Mint and Dill Salad, Cucumber and Avocado Salad, and Cucumber Salad with Capers and Ricotta.

Looking for other cucumber recipes? You can find some here. And some other Ottolenghi recipes here. Wanting other salads? Try here. Or just browse the Cucumber Salads.

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Indian Style Slightly Sweet and Sour Pumpkin and Sweet Potato | Kaddu ki Sabzi | Pumpkin and Sweet Potato Subzi

A great use for left over pumpkin. Or cook from scratch.

The challenge of every xmas – and Thanksgiving, for that matter – is how to use the left over roasted pumpkin. I have found the solution.

Inspired by The Back Yard Lemon Tree, I took the Delhi Style Sweet and Sour Pumpkin and mixed it up a little to use up several different xmas leftovers. It was delicious. Do read the original recipe – it is from Madhur Jaffrey.

Are you looking for similar recipes? Try Pumpkin Curry, Pumpkin Soup and Pumpkin Risotto. And try these Sweet Potato dishes: Sweet Potato Subzi with Yoghurt, and Potato and Sweet Potato Spicy Curry.

Try other Subzis – Kohlrabi Subzi, Carrots and Green Peas Subzi, and Potato and Spinach Subzi.

You might also like to explore all of our Subzi recipes, all of our Pumpkin recipes and all of our Sweet Potato dishes.  Have a look at all of our Indian Vegetable Curries, and all of our Indian recipes. Or simply explore our Early Autumn dishes.

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