Monday, September 03, 2007

Looking Ahead

Have come across the following recipe which makes a cooked salad cream (it won't freeze, but will keep for up to a month in a screwtop jar in the fridge), this is a beaut for those who can't eat eggs.

Salad Cream with Honey and Mustard:
2 tblsp plain flour
1 tblsp runny honey
1 tsp salt
1 tsp mustard powder
8 fl.oz (225ml) milk
1 egg
4 tblsp cider vinegar
1 oz (25g) butter
salt and pepper
In a small pan put the flour, honey, salt and mustard. Whisk in the milk and when blended, heat gently until the mixture has thickened. Remove from heat. Break the egg into a bowl and whisk in the sauce, and when smooth return it to the pan. Add the vinegar and the butter and heat until the butter melts and the mixture just begins to simmer. Remove from the heat and season to taste. Leave to cool, stirring occasionally to prevent a skin forming, even better, press some clingfilm onto the surface of the salad cream and then leave to get cool. When cold, pour into a sterilised screw-cap jar, cover and store in the fridge. Makes about half a pint (300ml).
Adjusting the recipe: made mustard could be used instead of the powder, use Dijon if you prefer a blander flavour. White wine vinegar could be used instead of cider vinegar. For an even cheaper version use just the white malt vinegar.

Potato and Bacon Salad: serves 4
1 1/2lb (750g) new potatoes, scrubbed
2 tblsp olive oil
4 oz (110g) smoked streaky bacon, chopped
2 dessp mayonnaise
2 spring onions, chopped
1 tblsp white wine vinegar
1 level tsp wholegrain mustard
1 dessp chopped fresh mint
salt and pepper
Cook the potatoes in a pan of salted, boiling water until tender. Drain well and crush half of them. Heat half the oil in a pan and add the chopped bacon rashers and fry until crispy.
Remove from the heat. Mix the remaining oil with the vinegar, mustard, onions and the mint, season to taste, then add the bacon along with the pan juices. Stir into the potatoes, pile into a dish and serve.
Economy Tips: use canned new potatoes, drain and reheat. Use a blend of sunflower and olive oil, or just sunflower oil. If no spring onions, use one shallot or half a small onion finely sliced. Use bought or home-made mayo - see above or previously given recipes - and blend half the quantity with half plain yogurt . Use ordinary vinegar and ordinary mustard. It won't taste quite as good, but still worth eating. Instead of frying the bacon (the juices do add necessary flavour) it could be grilled instead.
When cutting costs, try not to substitute every ingredient with a lower priced alternative, as the saying goes - "no point in ruining the ship for a ha'p'th of tar".