Frozen Berries with White Chocolate Cream

In the extreme weather of Summer in Australia – temperatures of 47C in Adelaide and catastrophic fires across Australia – we made this beautiful dish. It was a change from consuming copious amounts of icecream and fruit lassi. It really is beautiful – sweet, chocolaty with overtones of the bitters used to dress the fruit. It is my new favourite Ottolenghi dish.

It is a dish from the Dessert section of Ottolenghi’s Plenty More. We don’t often make dessert but this one is one of the best, now on our Summer rotation. With all Ottolenghi recipes I feel free to substitute whatever is in our fridge or pantry at the time. For this recipe, I bought a bag of mixed frozen berries, and used primarily the berries other than the strawberries. It was delicious and a cost effective way of making this dish in Australia. He suggests using a lot of red and black currents, but they are hard to get and expensive here. If you find your fruit too sweet with the chocolate cream, add some lemon juice to them.

You can check Ottolenghi’s original recipes in his books and in his various print columns.

The berries in fact are very useful for other dishes – serve them with Rice Pudding, Besan Payasam, for instance, or with French Toast.

Similar recipes include Blueberries with Bay Custard and Gin, Creme Fraiche Icecream, Junket with Macerated Strawberries and Passionfruit, and French Toast with Baked Strawberries.

Browse 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 Mid Summer recipes.

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Buttery Dal, with Urad and Tomatoes

While lentils are a beloved pantry essential around the world, they are cooked with unmatched culinary skill in India. Dal is a staple dish in most Indian homes, one that cuts across all social and economic groupings. In Northern India, there is a deep love for urad lentils, those hard back bullets that are white when skinned. Recipes vary from deeply spiced and complex, like Dal Makhani, to gentle, subtle and glorious, like Urad Tamatar, and Amristari Dal.

What all (or most) of them have in common is an enrichment with butter and/or cream. Urad lentils are particularly comfortable with surprising amounts of this dairy fat, so there is a need to get over any qualms – just dive in and add. After all, you are not eating it every day, right? This is a restaurant style dish (ie lots of butter and cream), but if you do want to minimise the quantities, you can get by with adding about 1/2 or 1/3 of the amount. In homes similar dishes are made for breakfast, particularly in the countryside and probably with smaller amounts of butter and cream.

The recipe is one of the gentle, subtle, earthy urad dishes. You will adore it. I have added a chilli-cumin finishing oil which is gorgeous, but optional.

Similar recipes include Amristari Dal, Dal Makhani Nilgiri, and Urad Dal with Onions.

Browse all of our Urad recipes and all of our Dals. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Late Summer dishes.

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Apple and Celery Creamy Yoghurt Salad

Yoghurt is used in salads all over the world, except, it seems, in cuisines such as English based countries. Let’s remedy that by mixing yoghurt and cream (yum!) and using it to dress apples and celery. It is delicious.

Add some fresh walnuts if you wish. They go really well with celery and apples.

Similar dishes include Bondhi Yoghurt Salad, Celery Yoghurt Salad, and Cucumber Yoghurt Salad.

Browse all of our Salads and all of our Yoghurt dishes. Our Apple recipes are here and Celery dishes here. Or explore our Mid Spring recipes.

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Baked Fennel with Mint and Parsley, with a Creamy Sauce

It is late winter and the fennel in my green grocer is still both superb and cheap. Today we bake it with lemon and herbs. It is served with a lovely creamy sauce, almost like aoli, but made with cream. As we are vegetarians, we don’t cook with eggs, so this dressing of pouring cream, seasoning and lemon juice, beaten till it thickens, is a perfect substitute. You should try it! Different flavourings can be added as needed.

Today, we caramelised some cumquats to serve with the fennel. The caramelisation deepens the cumquat flavours and as they are abundantly in season we are using them in place of lemons in many dishes.

Are you after similar recipes? Try Baked Fennel Stuffed with Feta, Florentine Fennel with Parmesan, Slow Baked Fennel with Chilli, Orange and Garlic, Grilled Fennel with Fresh Mozzarella, and Fennel a la Grecque.

Browse all of our Fennel recipes and all of our Dressings. Our Baked dishes are good in Winter to warm the kitchen. Or take some time to explore our Late Winter recipes.

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Gratin Dauphinois | Potato Gratin with Cream

As Winter marches on, we want dishes that we can cook in the oven, to add another source of heat to warm the kitchen. Baked dishes are also usually hearty, so they warm and nourish the body in a way that we only seek in Winter. And therefore, gratin dishes are so perfect, ticking every box. We are bringing potato gratins back, we have posted a similar recipe before. But it is such a Mid Winter Winner that we wanted to highlight this style of dish for you again.

This dish layers potatoes with cheese, covers them with milk and cream, and bakes them until bubbling and golden. Delicious! It is more potato luxury from France, where potatoes, butter and cream have a natural affinity. From memory,  my daughter’s French teacher gave me this recipe, years ago.

Gratin Dauphinois comes from the Dauphine region in south east France. It first appeared in 1788. It is now popular in many parts of France.

You might also know Gratin Dauphinois by alternative names:

  • pommes de terre dauphinoise
  • potatoes a la dauphinoise
  • gratin de pommes a la dauphinoise

Are you looking for similar dishes? Try Garlic Herb Potatoes, Cheesy Eggplants baked with Saucy Tomatoes, Gratin of Potatoes and Zucchini, and Gratineed Sweet Potatoes.

You can browse our Potato Bakes, all of our Gratin dishes and all of our Potato recipes. Or you might like to browse French recipes. Or simply explore all of our Early Winter dishes.

This recipe is one of our vegetarian recipes from our first blog that was in existence from 1995 – 2006; you can find them in our Retro Recipes series.

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Rose Strawberries with Sweet Yoghurt Cream

Strawberries are very very cheap at the moment, and it is the perfect time to make a few strawberry dishes. Here we are marinating them in Kewra Water and Rosewater, and they will be served with a thick, drained and sweetened yoghurt. It is a delicious Summer dessert. Pop the colours further with a few blueberries and a couple of basil leaves or shreds of kaffir lime leaf.

The drained yoghurt is delicious and can be used in so many ways. Leftovers will keep a few days in the fridge. Read more about making it here. There are ideas on how to use them here.

Similar recipes include Glossy Strawberry SauceBaked Plums with Marsala or Port, Green Tea, Mint and Strawberry Cooler, Strawberries with Lemon,  and Strawberries with Mint Raspberry Sauce.

Also try our Sweet Orange Star Anise Sauce.

Browse all of our Strawberry recipes, and all of our Desserts. Or explore our Mid Summer dishes.

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Creamy Salad Dressing | Egg Free

My Mother would make two salad dressings – one an eggless, mustardy mayonnaise made with condensed milk (its a beauty) and today’s recipe, a creamy salad dressing that is also eggless. It is not that she was against using eggs (we had several dozen chooks),  but she had a number of things influencing her cooking – her experience in the tough times of  World War II as she was growing up, living in an isolated part of South Australia, her Germanic influences from her parents and grandparents, and a preference for things to be easy in the Kitchen as she didn’t really enjoy cooking.

I am glad that these things all came together to produce both of these dressings, because I keep my Kitchen meat-free and egg-free. So these two recipes are heaven-sent, ready to use whenever mayonnaise style dressings are required. The other one that is handy is this lemony yoghurt dressing.

This creamy dressing always appeared on my Mother’s tomato salads, and it well suits both tomatoes and cucumbers. Who thinks of putting mayo or a creamy dressing on tomato salads these days? My mother always did. And they were delicious, our favourite.

But it is also versatile, useful for all sorts of salads. It can be flavoured, eg with mustard or garlic or capers or spring onions, and this is done so easily. Try it on a raw vegetable salad, crunchy shredded root vegetables, a green lettuce based salad, over salad bowls, and with roast vegetable salads.

Similar recipes include Tahini and Yoghurt Sauce and Dressing, Creamy Horseradish Dressing, Miso Sesame Dressing, Garlic Yoghurt Dressing, and Herby Mustard Dressing.

Browse all of our Dressings and all of our Salads. Or explore our Mid Summer dishes.

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Creamy Potato Cheese Gratin

Normally cheesy gratin dishes would be Winter fare in this house, but it is late Spring as I write, and we have the heating on and three layers of clothes. It is cold and wet. It might be 10 days from Summer but it feels like mid Winter. It HAS to be potatoes and cheese. Plus the oven warms the kitchen nicely.

Are you looking for similar dishes? Try Garlic Herb Potatoes, Gratin Dauphinois, Pommes de Terre Maxim, Parmesan Potatoes, Pasta Bake with Cabbage and Cheese, Gratin of Potatoes and Zucchini, and Gratineed Sweet Potatoes.

Other Potato dishes include Saag Aloo.

You can browse all of our Gratin dishes and all of our Potato recipes. Or simply explore all of our Late Summer dishes.

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Potatoes and Cheddar Gratin

As Winter marches on, we want dishes that we can cook in the oven, to add another source of heat to warm the kitchen. Baked dishes are also usually hearty, so they warm and nourish the body in a way that we only seek in Winter. Gratin dishes are so perfect, ticking every box.

This dish layers potatoes with cheese, covers them with milk and cream, and bakes it until bubbling and golden. Delicious!

Are you looking for similar dishes? Try Cheesy Eggplants baked with Saucy Tomatoes, Parmesan Potatoes, Pasta Bake with Cabbage and Cheese, Gratin of Potatoes and Zucchini, and Gratineed Sweet Potatoes.

You can browse Gratin Collectionall of our Gratin dishes and all of our Potato recipes. Or simply explore all of our Early Winter dishes.

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English Creamed Carrots with Spices

A modern take on an English classic.

Everything old is new again. This is definitely a retro English recipe, the sort of recipe that screams of the cold weather and the need for cream to make you feel comforted and warm and nourished. But it is also a lovely recipe that can be modernised to suit today’s palates.

Are you after other Carrot Recipes? Try Carrot Rice, Carrots with Green Peas and Green Coriander, Green Mung and Baked Carrot Salad, and a Spicy Carrot Side Dish.

Why not browse all of our Carrot recipes, or explore our English/British recipes. Or take some time to check out our easy Winter recipes.

Also, feel free to browse recipes from our Retro Recipes series, vegetarian recipes from our first blog from 1995 – 2006.

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