Big day today for the UK and EU referendum. Don’t worry I’m not going to launch into a political rant, but for so many reasons, I am hoping of course that we remain (the thought of leaving depresses me and is as bad as the thought of Trump getting voted in). Also today I am cooking for the first time with Gleaters – a new start-up company which seeks out independent chefs across London and delivers their food to your door (well if you live in North or East London that is!) https://gleaters.co.uk/dishes. So, you can eat my creations as the results come in..
Gleaters represents one of the lovely things about living in the UK, and in particular London; the fusion of cultures and their cuisines, from various corners of the world… If we Brexit, I’m worried we could lose much of this.
Earlier in the week Gleaters came along came to my house to photograph me with my dishes and then taste test them afterwards. Today I will be going to Gleaters’ kitchen to re-create them for the public.
My first dish is a Chermoula aubergine and chickpea tagine served with almond freekeh and cucumber and mint yogurt.
I first developed this dish when I had my challenge at the end of the cordon vert course with the vegetarian society (see earlier blog entry which has a version of this recipe: http://thenomadicvegetarian.com/cordon-vert-chefs-diploma/). I have since adapted and improved on this recipe. Chermoula is found in many countries in North Africa. It is of course better home-made, using preserved lemons, sweet paprika, chilli flakes, cumin, coriander and fresh herbs. In this dish I have both burnt the aubergines and roasted them to give them a deeper, smoky flavour. Freekeh (pronounced free-kah) is a kind of cracked and roasted bulgar wheat, which is full of protein and has a lovely nutty, slightly smoky flavour. This dish is quite spicy, so I will be making a refreshing mint, cucumber and yogurt dip to accompany it. It’s only the yogurt which isn’t vegan, but I am happy to do a vegan option – just let me know.
My 2nd dish is moghrabieh, butternut squash, feta and pomegranate salad. This is great if you fancy a lighter dinner and also makes a lovely lunch dish. Moghrabieh is giant couscous from Lebanon. Here I have roasted the squash with sumac in the oven, until it has started to caramalise. I have added grilled peppers, pomegranate seeds, toasted pumpkin seeds, feta, olive oil, lemon juice and lots of fresh herbs. Similarly, this dish can also be made vegan on request.
Gleaters are offering free delivery and currently delivers to the following postcodes N1, N4, N5, N7, N15, N16, EC1, EC2, E1, E2, E3, E5, E8, E9. You need to order though before 6pm though!
I will be cooking up these dishes at Gleaters again next Thursday. If you have any requests for the future or would like my recipes for these dishes please get in contact.