Smoked Mackerel Pate

The Twelve Recipes of Christmas

Dawn: (Singing) On the eighth day of Christmas,

My true Love Food sent to me

Eight maids a-milking…

Andrew: I’m getting quite used to this now!

Dawn: Excellent! I’d hate for you not to be getting into the swing of things!

Andrew: So, eight maids a-milking and what of the Twelve Recipes of Christmas are they bringing, do tell?

Dawn: All will be revealed!

Drum roll, curtains lift to reveal…

Dawn: A deliciously simple smoked mackerel pate recipe…so simple…it’s utterly delish!

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Ingredients

Serves 4

400g Smoked mackerel fillets (boneless)

200g soft cheese (low fat version)

1 and a half lemons, freshly squeezed (or bottled juice)

1 anchovy fillet

Salt and pepper to season

Method

  • Remove the skin from the smoked mackerel fillets and any bones that you can see.
  • Put the smoked mackerel, soft cheese, anchovy fillet and lemon juice into a food processor and blitz until the ingreiients are combined.
  • Taste and season. Blitz quickly to mix the seasonings into the mixture.
  • Pot up into four ramekins and serve either with crispbreads, toast or a salad.

IMG_3735Andrew: That is simple – and mmm…delicious (reaches for a second pot of smoked mackerel pate)

Dawn: Thanks. It was a concoction I created wanting something different than turkey at this special time of year.

Andrew: This certainly tastes very special, indeed.

Dawn: And mackerel is packed full of those lovely omega-3 oils that are so good for our metabolism, wellbeing and general health. 

Andrew: Here’s to celebrating this Christmas season with deliciously simple food and drinks that are good for us.

Dawn: I’ll drink to that (clinks glasses of tasty treats yet to come on this blog!)

For more in this series of festively inspired food ideas, then follow this blog here and keep up-to-date on Twitter. Facebook and Mumsnet are websites you’ll find us on, too – so keep looking for tasty recipes coming!

 

 

Apple and Dates Stuffing

The Twelve Recipes of Christmas

On the third day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…three French hens…

which would all benefit from being stuffed!

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Stuffing can be anything you have to hand – that’s edible, of course!

This recipe started out as a chestnut stuffing one and quickly became an apple and dates stuffing, instead.

Ingredients

150g wholemeal bread (approximately 3 slices), made into breadcrumbs (either by rubbing the bread against a grater or popping it into a food processor and blitzing it )

1 red onion (or white, whichever your preference is)

1 eating apple, washed and grated

7 dried dates, chopped

1 egg, beaten

Sprinkling of mixed herbs OR 1 tsp of thyme

Method

  • Put all the ingredients except the egg into a basin and mix together.IMG_3311
  • Make a well in to the centre of the ingredients and add the beaten egg. Now, mix into the other ingredients.
  • Don’t make the stuffing too wet or too dry; if too wet it will be stodgy and if too dry it will be crumbly and difficult to handle.
  • You are now ready to stuff the turkey. It’s easiest to stuff by turning the turkey to lie on it’s front, so enabling you easy access to the neck area. Put the stuffing in the neck end ONLY as it might not cook sufficiently in the body cavity.IMG_3314

Dawn: Don’t add the egg until you are ready to stuff the turkey. This prevents bacteria penetrating the stuffing which may not reach a sufficiently high temperature during the cooking to kill it off so DON’T add the egg until you are ready to cook the turkey.

Andrew: A chicken or turkey will benefit from being stuffed as the stuffing will help keep the meat moist as it cooks. It simply helps prevent the meat from drying out too much during the long cooking time.

Dawn: Absolutely, and some recipes will use sausage meat in the stuffing.

Andrew: Yes, this is true. The egg will offer sufficient moisture for a turkey up to to about 6-7kg in weight.

Dawn: Additional moisture can come from smearing the turkey with butter by rubbing it into it’s skin.

Andrew: And then by criss-crossing streaky bacon strips across it. The bacon will release it’s juices as it cooks and these will seep into the turkey meat.

Dawn: Voila! A simple stuffing recipe that can be made by everyone. A recipe that can be adapted to what you may have in the kitchen cupboards: from traditional sage and onion stuffing, through to chestnut and bacon stuffing, or apricots, cranberries and walnuts stuffing…the possibilities are endless.

Whatever combination you opt for, enjoy your festive selection! Merry Christmas season, everyone!

For more in this series of festively inspired food ideas, then follow this blog here and keep up-to-date on Twitter. Facebook and Mumsnet are websites you’ll find us on, too – so keep looking for tasty recipes coming!

 

Low Fat Banana Ice Cream

Yes, fellow foodies – you did read the title correctly! Low fat – LOW FAT – banana ice cream! Get set for this oh-so-very-easy-recipe that will set your taste buds alight and will incredulously impress you with it’s simplicity. 

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Ingredients

Serves 4-6 portions

6 bananas, peeled and sliced

250ml very low fat natural yoghurt

1tbsp natural honey

Method

  • On a large baking sheet, place a piece of greaseproof paper large enough to cover it.
  • Next, place the slices of bananas individually on the greaseproof paper and when the baking sheet it covered in the spherical ‘discs’, place it in the freezer. Allow the banana slices to freeze.

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  • When the slices are fully frozen, remove them from the freezer and transport them to the bowl of a food processor.
  • Add the very low fat natural yoghurt and honey, and blitz the ingredients until combined.

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  • Next, scoop the ice cream into a freezer-proof container for storing afterwards.
  • Ahead of placing this in the freezer, serve scoops of this soft ice cream with a few raspberries to decorate and a drizzle of raspberry coulis.

Dawn: This is something I dreamed up when thinking about low fat ice cream variations – a term, in itself, that sounds contradictory yet isn’t! This recipe really is so ultra simple to make and tastes lovely, too. A summertime divine treat!

Andrew: Our Ice Cream Off is scooping a lot of ice cream fans’ attention!

Dawn: Let the competition continue!

For more simple-to-make and easy-to-follow recipes, follow this blog to receive updates when they happen – straight to your ‘inbox’ – www.forfoodlovers.wordpress.com and the Twitter feed @Love_Food_UK.