Wednesday, 7 August 2019

3 bean curry and courgette cake

As we had a surprise change of the menu due to a need for a gluten free meal, we used my friend Thea's 3 bean curry recipe, we had it with yoghurt and coriander and some rice.

We also tasted the sunflower leaf soup, as we had plenty of these after picking some flowers to cheer up our houses.

Yuki and Lisa grated the courgettes for the cake which we had as a desert we made some courgette and lemon drizzle cake.  Although very nice, I probably would have  a little less courgette in the cake and a little bit more sugar.

This was the last time for the children and Asko to come to our cooking sessions as they are off back to Japan again. We shall miss them.

Monday, 5 August 2019

Courgettes and runner beans and new potatoes

As the courgettes are growing fast and furiously, we turned them into vegan fritters and had them with new potatoes and runne beans. A simple but tasty meal.  We also had the first of the blackberry cordial harvested this year.

Kevin and Rozenn preparing the runner beans
Lu and Tom

Carmen, Kevin, Rozenn and Simone harvesting new potatoes

Carmen, Lu, Tom and Simone making the courgette fritters

Tuesday, 30 July 2019

Courgettes are growing like mad!

Today we are ploughing through 5 huge courgettes as the sun and recent heavy rain made them grown so fast we could not keep up with them.

Although our group today was small as most of the from spade to Plate members have returned to their countries or have gone on holiday, we managed to use almost all of the courgettes.

So together with Lucy (and baby Thomas), June and Rozenn we turned them in a delicious creamy Plant based Courgette soup

We made some Courgetti Spaghetti 'nests' we put them in a muffin pan, added, some finely chopped onion, olives, fetta cheese, cheddar and a mix of egg and a little white wine. This went into the over for 20 minutes  to have as a little appetizer.

The rest if the courgettes were turned into a Lemon Courgette cake. We added poppy seeds to the recipes and a handful of blackberries from the garden.  It turned out lovely

Wednesday, 17 July 2019

Pappardelle with peas, broadbeans and parmesan and lovely waffles

May be not the cleverest thing to do, but we made pappardelle for 7 people today. The kitchen surfaces were covered in drying pasta. The first batch (left over dought from yesterday's meal) had been in the fridge over night and came out beautifully. Nice thin pasta that once cut, dried instantly (well, almost instantly) The newly made pasta dough (2 cups of flour, 2 eggs, a little salt, some oil and water, was a bit sticky and needed lots more flour to work with. Despite this, the food was delicious.
Melendra showing us how to make the pasta like a pro!
Whilst we were waiting for the pasta dough to rest, Mark revealed the first audio reading of his book College of Shadows for the critical listeners to give feedback. We all agreed on pace, type of voice etc so he can go and pass on this useful info to Howard directly.  Thanks ladies!

Peas, Broadbeans and lemon what a delightful combi.
We also made Belgium Waffles with this tasty lemon and raspberry sauce. We picked the raspberries from the back garden.
Ben and Tina picking the raspberries
Then we went to the allotment to pick the mint that went so well with the peas and beans in the pappardelle.
  When we arrived home, we put the whole lot together and within no time we were dining like a King and Queens. Must do this again, it was so tasty.

Monday, 15 July 2019

An anti inflammatory mung bean curry and vegan waffle

As we are inbetween crops at the moment and I only have some fruit and perpetual spinach growing in the allotment, we are making a curry including the spinach amongst other pulses, spices and bought carrots.

For desert we made these Belgium raspberry waffles with lemon raspberry syrup.

What a treat!
Terry arrived early with a freshly foraged bag of bullace plums from Wolfson College,we included them in the sauce too and tasted sweet and yummi!

 I have decided to make this Curry with rice, a dollop of greek yoghurt and coriander.


Monday, 8 July 2019

Chick peas to use up

As this weekend I made some lemon mousse made with aquafaba, I had rather a lot of chick peas to use up.

I therefore decided to make beetroot hummus (I added a beetroot and some feta cheese to this recipe)
I also felt that 1 cup of chick peas was not enough, I virtually doubled it not needing to adjust the spices or anything else.

We had these with the Falafel which Hiroe fried beautifully. We all agreed these were the best we have ever had.

Then we decided to make the pita bread, we all felt this recipe was the best we have ever made, and according to Simone, Much, much better than from the shops.

We went to the allotment where we harvested lettuces to go with this feast, some sunflower buds to have as an alternative to artichockes.  I harvested one this morning, but it took nearly 1 hour to cook and as I was told that the sunflower buds only take 3 minutes to cook and taste similar to artichokes, we had to give it a try. For nearly every one having a artichoke was the first time and both June and Simone, were making sure not one leaf was left untouched!  The sunflower buds were messy to prepare but very quick to cook (3 minutes). they did taste a bit like artichokes but maybe with a hint of little bitterness.  We had them with a vinegrette sauce. Good we tried and good to know that the whole floers is edible.

Rhubarb cordial, Tummeric and Pea soup. Broad Bean Orzotto, green salad

With still a bag of rhubarb in the freezer and it is time to start making space for produce from the garden, we made some Rhubarb cordial, with orange, lemon and ginger together with some fizzy water a delightful summer drink.

We went to the allotment to pick the heritage broad beans, the purple flowers were lovely in spring, but the leaves now have become spotted with rust. it did not damage the beans though so the Broad Bean Orzotto became a lovely treat.  We had this with the green salad which we decorated with flower petals (calendula yellow and orange, corn flower, and borage) some chopped walnuts and feta cheese.

The last group picked all the peas, enough to put some in the freezer, so we managed to use them for the Tummeric and Pea soup.

Tuesday, 2 July 2019

Lavender cordial, pea risotto and a strawberry icecream.

One of our members, Annie, contacted me if we could do a special special for her friends who came over for a couple of weeks from China.  We had a lovely time.

First we picked lavender to turn into lavender cordial to have as a drink with our lunch.
Then we harvested all the peas from the back garden and then planted some french beans.

Planting french beans
The peas were picked for the pea and broadbean  risotto  which went really well with the green salad (with a hand ful of strawberries). For afters we made the vegan strawberry and banana ice cream..

Bob my neighbour is on holiday and he contacted me to  pick the sweet peas so they would keep on flowering. What a better occasion to do this today. We all picked a bunch,  the girls gave one away to Betty and the others to some complete strangers on their way to the punts.

Look at what we have harvested!
Annie with her friends in the allotment
Karina with her new friends
Annie, Liang Lele, Wu Juan, Zhang Yu, Ma Fang

Monday, 1 July 2019

Mushroom Tartlets

Using the grey oyster mushroom  from the that we grew over the last month or so, we made some delicious mushroom tartlets with new potatoes,  french beans  and salad.
A very easy meal but out of this world scrumptious.

Tuesday, 25 June 2019

The Chickpea theme

As last week I needed some aquafaba to make vegannaise, I have a lot of chickpeas to be used.

We therefore are going to make a Curried Chickweed with Chickpeas and rice with a green salad  and as a desert a chickpea brownies.

As a juice we will make a summer fruit cordial with strawberries, red and black currants and some josta berries.

Monday, 24 June 2019

Sushi and strawberies

East meets West in yesterday's from Spade to Plate.
We turned a large bowl of freshly picked strawberries into Strawberry Jam, Cordial and a dessert whilst all this was bubbling and cooling we made a vegan alternative to smoked salmon (to go in our sushi) and had a sushi making session, especially whilst we had so many experts on hand. Thank you to Ai, Asako, Sayaka and Hiroe for giving some authentic hints and tips.

 We had to say goodbye to Yasmin who is returning to her home country. The first of many to come.....For now though we enjoy eachother's company and keep on harvesting and cooking.

Monday, 17 June 2019

Use what is in the freezer

The weather has been terribly wet which made me harvest all the strawberries that were ready to harvest, normally I might have left them for a few more day in the sunshine to sweeten them but I did not want to risk rot, slug damage and watery flavour, so today we picked all in order to eat in the strawberry and banana ice cream as well as to freeze for later use.

The onions, garlic and spinach beet that were frozen in the last few weeks, were turned into a delicious spinach and potato curry.


The potatoes were harvested from the back garden and the area resown with french beans, Faraday, and beetroot boltardy for a late harvest in September.
The bed sit has peas in them, so we all had a little pod to enjoy as a treat. Like June said, this is what she used to do as a small girl when visiting her grandmother.


The flat bread we enriched with calendula and cornflower blossom. It did not give a special taste, but it was a joy for the eye.

We also went out to cut some of the lavender to be turned into lavender cordial. A real delight.


Terry, Sayaka, Ai, Yasmin, Hiroe, Asako and June enjoying their lunch