Saturday, December 11, 2010

Two Weeks to Go...!

Onion Yogurt Sauce: makes approx 7 fl.oz (200ml)
half oz (12g) butter
1 small onion, finely chopped
good pinch paprika
good pinch ground coriander
salt and pepper
5 fl oz (150ml) natural yogurt
1 tblsp chopped fresh chives (opt)
Melt the butter in a small pan, then stir in the onions and cook over low heat until softened - this taking about 5 - 7 minutes. Add the paprika and coriander with salt and pepper to taste, stir and fry for a further minute, then remove from heat, cool slightly then stir in the yogurt and chives (if using). Serve at once.

Cream Cheese 'Yogonnaise': serves 4 - 6
2 fl oz (50ml) mayonnaise
2 fl oz (50ml) natural yogurt
3 oz (50g) cream cheese
2 tsp finely chopped fresh chives
1 tsp lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients together, then chill before serving.

Despite it needing more than a few ounces of yogurt, this next recipe does make a very pleasant frozen dessert, far lower in calories than ice-cream. Although gooseberries are the chosen fruit in this recipe, any soft fruit puree could be used instead.

Yogurt Sorbet: serves 6
1lb 8 oz (680g) gooseberries, topped and tailed
7 tblsp water
a good 4 oz (110g) sugar
1 sachet gelatine
10 fl oz (275g) natural yogurt
2 egg whites
Put the gooseberries in a pan with four tablespoons of the water, cover and simmer gently for 10 minutes. or until the fruit is soft. Blitz in a blender or food processor, then push through a sieve to remove seeds. Set aside for 10 minutes to cool slightly.
Meanwhile put the remaining 3 tblsp of water into a small cup/bowl and sprinkle over the gelatine crystals. Leave to stand for 5 minutes, then place container in a small pan of simmering water to warm through. Stir until the gelatine has completely dissolved. Leave until lukewarm, then stir in the gooseberry puree, followed by the yogurt.
Whisk the egg whites until stiff (but not dry) and fold these into the gooseberry mixture, then pour into a rigid container and place in the freezer. Remove after 3 hours - or when almost frozen, then whisk well, or tip into a food processor and give a quick pulse to mix, then return to freezer for at least 4 hours - or until firm. Keep the container covered if wishing to keep for a few days/weeks.
Before serving, remove from freezer and place container in the fridge for at least half an hour to give it a chance to soften slightly and be 'scoopable'.

Thai Fishcakes - with Raita: serves 4
1 x 200g tub Greek yogurt
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 tsp mint sauce
quarter cucumber, cut into tiny cubes
1 lb (450g) white fish, cut into chunks
3 tsp Thai red curry paste
1 tblsp chopped fresh coriander
juice of 1 lime (or lemon)
1 tblsp sunflower oil
salt and pepper to taste
Put the yogurt, garlic, mint sauce and cucumber into a bowl and fold together and set aside (this is the Raita).
Place the fish, curry paste, coriander and lime juice and seasoning into a food processor and blitz until smooth. Form into 12 - 16 small balls, then flatten slightly. Put the oil in a frying pan and fry the fish cakes in small batches until golden and crisp on both sides. Drain on kitchen paper and keep warm until all the fish cakes have been cooked. Serve warm with the Raita. Goes well with salad and couscous.
Note: The fishcakes can be made earlier in the day and kept in the fridge until time to cook.