Recipes and facts – Basil

Basil is a flavourful, leafy green herb that originated in Asia and Africa.

It’s a member of the mint family, and many different varieties exist.

Popular as a food seasoning, this aromatic herb is also used in teas and supplements.

Because basil is generally used in small quantities, the only substantial nutrient it provides is vitamin K. Basil also supplies plant compounds, which contribute aroma and flavour.


Basil Pesto

Basil Sorbet

Classic Basil Pesto

  • basil a large bunch (approx. 100g), leaves picked
  • sea salt 1 tsp
  • garlic ½ clove, crushed
  • pine nuts 50g, toasted
  • extra-virgin olive oil 100ml
  • parmesan 50g, finely grated

Put the basil, salt, garlic and pine nuts into a small food processor and pulse until broken down.

Drizzle in the olive oil with the motor running until you have a smooth–ish sauce with a little texture remaining.

Tip into a bowl and stir in the cheese.

Season with salt and pepper

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Orange and Basil Sorbet

  • oranges 4, 2 zested
  • caster sugar 250g
  • basil a large bunch

Gently heat the sugar with 250ml water until dissolved, then simmer for 2 minutes.

Tear the basil leaves, add to the syrup and infuse until cool.

Strain, mix with the orange juice and zest then churn in an ice cream maker until frozen, or freeze in a container, stirring once or twice.

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Recipes and facts – Jerusalem Artichokes

From the Jamie Oliver website


  • 600 g Jerusalem artichokes
  • olive oil
  • a few bay leaves
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 splash white wine vinegar
  • salt
  • pepper

Peel the artichokes, then cut them into chunks.

Place them in an oiled frying pan and fry on a medium heat until golden on both sides, then add a few bay leaves, 2 cloves of garlic, finely sliced, a splash of white wine vinegar, some salt and pepper, and place a lid on top.

After about 20 to 25 minutes they will have softened up nicely and you can remove the lid and the bay leaves.

Continue cooking for a couple of minutes to crisp the artichoke slices up one last time, then serve straight away.

These go well with both meat and fish and are particularly good in a plate of antipasti, or in soups or warm salads.

Serves 4.

Recipes and facts – Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi is a cruciferous vegetable that’s closely related to cabbage. Its leaves, stems, and bulbs can be eaten raw or cooked.

One cup (135 grams) of kohlrabi provides 93% of your daily vitamin C needs. It’s also a good source of potassium, fibre, and vitamin B6.


Kohlrabi Slaw with Coriander, Jalapeño and Lime

Creamy Kohlrabi Soup

Kohlrabi Slaw with Coriander, Jalapeño and Lime

From the Feasting at home website.

  • 6 cups kohlrabi -cut into matchsticks or grated in a food processor -about three x 4 inch bulbs (or you could substitute sliced fennel, apple, jicama, cucumber, or cabbage for part of the kohlrabi for more diversity)
  • ½  cup chopped coriander( one small bunch)
  • half of a jalapeno -minced
  • 1/4 cup chopped Spring onion
  • orange zest from one orange, and juice
  • lime zest from one lime, and juice

Citrus Dressing :

  • 1/4 Cup olive oil
  • ¼ Cup  fresh orange juice ( juice form one orange)
  • 1/8 Cup lime juice plus 1 T ( juice from one large lime), more to taste
  • 1/4 Cup honey ( or agave syrup)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar

Trim and peel kohlrabi. ( I normally have to peel twice to get thru the thick skin). Cut off two ends. Cut in half from top to bottom. Thinly slice, rotate and slice again, making 1/4 inch matchsticks.

Place in large bowl with chopped coriander, spring onions, finely chopped jalapeño ( 1/2), lime zest and orange zest.

Whisk dressing together in a small bowl. Toss with salad. Refrigerate until serving. Garnish with zest and coriander. 

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Creamy Kohlrabi Soup – Abel and Coles website

  • 1 kohlrabi or 300g broccoli stalks, peeled and diced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • A nugget of butter or splash of olive oil
  • 1 medium potato, peeled and diced
  • 500ml veg or (chicken stock)
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • A handful of fresh parsley, plus more to serve
  • ½ lemon, juice and zest
  • A grating of fresh nutmeg (optional)
  • A dollop of crème fraîche (optional)

Gently fry the kohlrabi, onion and garlic in butter or oil over a medium-low heat for a few mins.

Add the spuds and stock and simmer till the veg are soft enough to whizz up.

Pop the veg and parsley in the blender. Let the veg cool a bit first as the pressure from the steam can make the lid blow off

Purée till smooth. Transfer it back to the pan to heat up. Taste. Season with salt, pepper and a touch of lemon juice and zest, and perhaps some nutmeg.

Serve with a dollop of crème fraîche, a bit more fresh parsley and even some crispy pancetta or little bits of bacon, if you fancy.

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Recipes and facts – Cauliflower

Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable and can be used as a ‘rice’ alternative, served as ‘steaks’ or taking centre stage in a roast.

It’s an easy vegetable to add to your diet – enjoy raw, steamed, puréed, mashed, grated or roasted.

Don’t discard the stem – it’s equally as nutritious and can be pulsed in a food processor to use as a base for vegetable soup, or added to a slaw.

An 80g (raw) portion contains approximately – 24 kcal/02 KJ, 2g protein, 3.5g carbohydrates, 1.4g fibre, 0.3g fat, 202mg potassium, 14mg calcium, 44mcg folate and 45mg of vit C.


Cauliflower Korma

Roasted Stuffed Cauliflower

Simple Roasted Cauliflower

Cauliflower Cake

Teriyaki Cauliflower Rice Stacks

Cauliflower Korma – From the Earth Share website 

  •  1 onion

  •  2 tsp garlic, finely chopped

  •  2 tbsp grated fresh ginger

  •  1 oz ground almonds

  •  1 tbsp ground coriander

  •  1 tsp cumin

  •  1 tsp ground cardamom

  •  1/2 tsp turmeric

  •  pinch of chilli powder

  •  1/2 cinnamon stick, ground

  •  2 tsp fennel seed, toasted and ground

  •  1 tbsp tomato puree

  •  1/2 pint coconut milk/water

Finely chop the onion; fry in a little oil for 10 mins until soft.

Add the garlic and ginger and fry for a further 2 mins.

Add the ground almonds; stir for 2 mins.

Add the spices; fry for 1 min then add the tomato puree.

Add some coconut milk and/or water to make a sauce consistency; simmer gently for 5 mins.

Prepare and steam the cauliflower; just before it is cooked, add to the korma sauce; simmer for a few minutes until the cauli is tender.

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Roasted stuffed cauliflower – BBC Good Food Website

  • 1 large or 2 small cauliflowers (about 850g)
  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 tbsp breadcrumbs
  • For the stuffing
  • 250g kale , chopped
  • 1 tbsp milled linseed
  • 1 onion , chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves , chopped
  • ½ small pack sage , leaves chopped
  • ½ small pack rosemary , leaves chopped
  • 150g cooked chestnuts , finely chopped, plus 30g for the topping
  • 2 lemons , zested
  • good grating nutmeg

Trim and discard the cauliflower leaves. Turn the cauliflower upside-down on a chopping board and use your knife to carefully cut out the stalk and core, leaving a cavity – the florets should still be holding together.

Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Submerge the cauliflower and cook for 7 mins, then remove with two slotted spoons and set aside to steam dry.

Add the kale to the pan and cook for a min or so until wilted. Drain, then run under cold water to cool. Squeeze out the excess liquid and roughly chop.

To make a linseed ‘egg’ (this will bind the stuffing together), mix the ground linseed with 3 tbsp water and set aside for 5-10 mins until gluey.

Meanwhile, heat 2 tbsp oil in a frying pan, add the onion and a pinch of salt, and cook until softened, then stir in the remaining stuffing ingredients, including the kale, and cook for a min or so more.

Remove from the heat and season, then put in a blender with 150ml water and the linseed egg and blitz to a thick purée. Transfer to a piping bag. 

Pipe the stuffing mixture into every nook and cranny of the cauliflower, getting in as much of the purée as you can. Transfer to a baking tray lined with parchment. Can be made up to this point in the morning and kept in the fridge.

Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6.

Mix the remaining chestnuts with the breadcrumbs and some seasoning. Spoon the remaining oil all over the cauliflower, then pat on the breadcrumb chestnut mix.

Roast for 45 mins until golden brown and tender (place under a hot grill for the last part of cooking time if it needs to crisp-up).

Serve with any crisp bits that have fallen onto the baking tray.

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Simple Roasted Cauliflower – from The Bitery Website

  • 1head Cauliflower
  • 5 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp All Spice
  • 1tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Maple Syrup
  • Pomegranate seeds
  • Handful of fresh parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 220 ºC.

Wash the cauliflower, remove the leaves and stalk and cut into small florets. In a bowl, whisk together the olive oil, cinnamon, all spices, red wine vinegar, maple syrup, salt and pepper.

Coat the cauliflower florets with the marinade and spread on the baking sheet

Bake in the oven for 25 – 30 minutes, until the cauliflower florets get crispy and turn golden brown. Allow to cool down for a few minutes.

In the meantime, prepare the pomegranate seeds and chop the parsley.

Drizzle some olive oil over the cauliflower and sprinkle with pomegranate seeds and parsley.

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Cauliflower Cake – Ottolenghi

  • 1 small cauliflower, outer leaves removed, broken into 3cm florets (450 g)
  • 1 medium red onion, peeled 
  • 5 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon finely chopped rosemary
  • 7 eggs
  • ½ cup chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 120 g all-purpose flour, sifted 
  • 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 150 g coarsely grated Parmesan or another mature cheese
  • Salt and black pepper (to taste)
  • Melted unsalted butter (as needed for brushing)
  • 1 tablespoon white sesame seeds
  • 1 teaspoon nigella seeds (optional)

Preheat the oven to 400°F/200°C.

Place the cauliflower florets in a saucepan and add 1 teaspoon salt. Cover with water and simmer for 15 minutes, until the florets are quite soft. They should break when pressed with a spoon. Drain and set aside in a colander to dry.

Cut 4 round slices off one end of the onion (each ¼ inch/5 mm thick) and set aside. Coarsely chop the rest of the onion and place in a small pan with the oil and rosemary. Cook for 10 minutes over medium heat, stirring from time to time, until soft. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. Transfer the onion to a large bowl, add the eggs and basil, whisk well, and then add the flour, baking powder, turmeric, Parmesan, 1 teaspoon salt, and plenty of pepper. Whisk until smooth before adding the cauliflower and stirring gently, trying not to break up the florets.

Line the base and sides of a 9 ½‑inch/24-cm spring-form cake pan with parchment paper. Brush the sides with melted butter, then mix together the sesame and nigella seeds and toss them around the inside of the pan so that they stick to the sides. Pour the cauliflower mixture into the pan, spreading it evenly, and arrange the reserved onion rings on top. Place in the center of the oven and bake for 50 minutes, until golden brown and set; a knife inserted into the center of the cake should come out clean. Remove from the oven and leave for at least 20 minutes before serving. It needs to be served just warm, rather than hot, or at room temperature.

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Teriyaki Cauliflower Rice Stacks – This Savory Vegan website

For the sticky rice

  • 1 cup white rice dry
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar

For the teriyaki cauliflower

  • 1 head cauliflower cut in florets
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup non-dairy milk unsweetened, plus more as needed
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/3 cup teriyaki sauce

For the stacks

  • 2 large avocados diced
  • 2 tablespoons coriander plus more for topping
  • 1 lime juiced
  • oil spray
  • spicy mayo see notes
  • black sesame seeds

Add the rice and water to a pot and bring to a boil. Cover, lower heat and simmer until all of the liquid is absorbed (approx. 20 minutes). Combine the sugar and vinegar in a small bowl and whisk. When the rice is done cooking add the vinegar mixture and fluff with a fork. Set aside to cool.

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Combine the flour, milk & white pepper in a bowl and mix to combine. Add more milk as needed – it should be the same consistency as pancake batter. Dip the cauliflower in the batter, letting the excess drip off. Place the coated florets on the baking sheet. Bake for 25 minutes, flipping after 15. Pour the teriyaki sauce over the cauliflower and toss to combine. Bake for 5 more minutes. Toss again & bake for another 2-5 minutes – being sure to keep an eye on it so the sauce doesn’t burn. Remove from the oven.

While the cauliflower is cooking, combine the avocado, cilantro & lime juice in a bowl. Set aside.

To assemble, spray a 1/2 cup measuring cup with a light coating of oil. Add an even layer of avocado to the bottom of the cup. Fill the remainder of the cup with rice and press it down. Run a knife along the edge of the measuring cup. Flip the measuring cup over a plate/platter and tap until the stack comes out. Repeat with the remaining ingredients. Top the stacks with cauliflower pieces, a drizzle of spicy mayo, cilantro and sesame seeds.

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Recipes and facts – Celery

Celery is a low-calorie vegetable with a high water content that contains a sizable dose of fibre, along with some vitamins and minerals. It’s a convenient on-the-go snack as well as a vegetable that can be incorporated into cooked dishes, stir-fries and salads.


Simple Celery Soup

Creamy celery gratin

Simple Celery Soup – Sylvia Fountaine for Feasting at Home website

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, or butter
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 fat garlic cloves, rough chopped
  • 6 cups celery, sliced thin (about 1 ¼1 ½ lbs ) 1 extra-large head, save some leaves for garnish
  • 2 cups potatoes, sliced into ½ inch thick rounds ( about ¾ lb)
  • 4 cups veggie or chicken broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 bay leaf (optional, remove before blending)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon cayenne, start conservatively, add more to taste or leave it out entirely.


  • ¼ cup fresh dill (small stems ok)
  • ½ cup fresh parsley (small stems ok)
  • Stir in: ½ cup (or more) of sour cream, plain yogurt, vegan sour cream, heavy cream or cashew cream. 

Heat the oil in a big pot over medium high heat, and add the onion, stirring occasionally, letting the onions get golden, about 5 minutes.

While the onions are cooking, rough chop the garlic, celery and potatoes. When the onions are golden add the garlic and stir 1-2 minutes, until fragrant. Add the celery, potatoes, broth, water, bay leaf, salt, pepper, and cayenne. The liquid should just cover the veggies. Cover, bring to a rolling boil, turn heat down and simmer gently until potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes.

Turn heat off, remove bay leaf and add the fresh herbs and just wilt them (don’t cook herbs or you lose the vibrant colour!)

Using a stick blender blend until very silky smooth – OR if using a regular blender, let cool before blending in smaller batches. 

Blend well, a full minute, until herbs are fully blended, creating a vibrant coloured soup. For extra “green” colour, add a handful of raw spinach if you like, or more fresh parsley. Place it back in the same pot over low heat. Stir in your choice of sour cream, or any of the other options.

***Gently heat, careful to not over simmer, or you may lose the lovely vibrant colour.

To make the crispy celery leaves, heat a generous amount of olive oil in a small skillet over medium heat.

Wait until the oil is hot. Fry a “tester” celery leaf for 10-20 seconds on each side. Set on a paper towel. If it is crisp, continue on.

Adding a few at a time, not overly crowding. If not crisp, fry them a little longer. You want about 3-5 leaves per serving bowl.

In the same oil, you could fry the nigella seeds until you just begin to hear popping. Turn heat off. Arrange the crispy celery leaves in a crescent shape. Spoon a little of the nigella seeds along with a little oil in the same shape. Sprinkle with hemp seeds if you like.

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Creamy celery gratin – BBC Good Food website

  • 2 celery heads, trimmed
  • 50g butter
  • 1 onion , thinly sliced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 100g breadcrumb
  • 50g walnut , roughly chopped
  • 75ml white wine
  • 250ml vegetable or chicken stock
  • 100ml double cream
  • 25g grated parmesan (or vegetarian alternative)

Cut any thick celery stalks in half, trim all of it into thumb-size lengths, then wash and leave wet.

Melt half the butter in a large frying pan, then add the celery, onion and bay leaves.

Season, cover, then cook over a medium heat for about 30 mins, stirring occasionally to stop the onions catching.

Meanwhile, prepare the breadcrumbs. Melt the remaining butter in a separate pan, then toss in the crumbs and walnuts, stirring often until lightly golden and toasted. Set aside.

Heat grill to medium.

When the celery is tender, turn the heat right up, pour in the wine and stock, then reduce by two-thirds.

Pour in the cream, then reduce for a final few mins until you have a syrupy sauce.

Check seasoning, tip into an ovenproof dish, then scatter with the breadcrumbs and Parmesan.

Grill for 2-3 mins, until the sauce bubbles.

Let it sit for 5 mins before serving.

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Recipes and facts – Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts are in the cruciferous family, related to broccoli, cauliflower, collard greens, and kale. 

When you prepare them the right way, Brussels sprouts have a mild, sweet, almost nutty flavour. But they’re very easy to overcook, which can lead to a bitter taste, mushy texture, and a strong, sulphur-like smell. 

To cook, rinse your sprouts well to remove any dirt. Slice off the bottom (which has a tough texture, even when cooked), and remove any outer, wilted leaves.

You can toss Brussels sprouts with olive oil and roast them until browned, or steam them in a pot with a few inches of water. They’re also easily sautéed or microwaved. You can add raw, shaved Brussels sprouts to soups and salads.


Sizzled Sprouts

Chicken tagine with spiced Brussels sprouts & feta

Brussels Sprout Pad Thai

Creamy Brussel Sprout & Lime Rice Bowl

Sizzled sprouts with pistachios & pomegranate – BBC Good Food  Website

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 500g Brussels sprouts, halve
  • 50g pistachios, roughly chopped
  • 100g pomegranate seeds
  • pomegranate molasses, to drizzle (optional)

Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat.

Put the sprouts in the pan, cut-side down, and leave them to fry for 10-15 mins, tossing occasionally.

If they’re just lightly brown, carry on cooking for a further 5 mins until blistered.

Scatter over the pistachios and stir-fry until toasted.

Remove from the heat and stir through the pomegranate seeds.

Season with salt and tip into a serving dish.

Drizzle with a little pomegranate molasses, if you like.

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Chicken tagine with spiced Brussels sprouts & feta – Joe Wicks

  • 1 ½ tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 large red onion , sliced
  • 1 red pepper , finely sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves , finely chopped
  • 10 chicken thighs fillets (boneless and skinless)
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 250ml chicken stock
  • 6 dried apricots , cut in half
  • 175g canned chickpeas , drained and rinsed
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • 275g Brussels sprouts , shredded
  • 50g feta
  • ½ small bunch coriander , roughly chopped

Heat 1 tbsp of the coconut oil in a large flameproof casserole dish over a medium heat. When melted and hot, add the onion, pepper and garlic.

Cook, stirring regularly, for 3 -4 mins or until just starting to soften.

Increase the heat to maximum and add the chicken thighs. Fry everything together for about 3 mins, stirring occasionally.

Sprinkle in the spices, squeeze in the tomato purée and fry, stirring almost constantly, for 1 min.

Pour in the stock and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and partially cover with a lid. After 30 mins, add the dried apricots and chickpeas, and continue to simmer for a further 10 mins.

While the tagine is bubbling away, heat the remaining 1/ 2 tbsp of coconut oil in a frying pan over a high heat.

When melted, add the cumin seeds, toast for 10 secs, then add the shredded sprouts.

Fry the sprouts over the high heat, stirring almost constantly, for 5 mins, by which time they should have softened and browned in places.

Serve the tagine in a large bowl, scatter over the fried sprouts, crumble over the feta and finish with the coriander.

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Brussel Sprout Pad Thai

  • 250g flat rice noodles
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • Juice 2 limes
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 2 spring onions, finely sliced
  • 1 red chilli, sliced
  • 200g cooked Brussels sprouts, sliced
  • 100g bean sprouts
  • 30g peanuts, chopped (to serve)
  • Lime wedges (to serve)

Put the noodles in a large heat proof bowl, cover in boiling water and leave for 10 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water, then set aside.

Mix together the soy sauce, lime juice and sugar.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan or wok. Fry garlic, spring onions, chilli and the cooked or left over Brussels sprouts for around 2 minutes. Add the noodles and beansprouts and fry for one minute more.

Pour over the sauce and toss well, working quickly to coat the veg and noodles. Once everything is heated through, season and divide between four plates.

Scatter with the peanuts and serve with lime wedges.

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Creamy Brussel Sprout & Lime Rice Bowl

  • 1 lb Brussel sprouts shredded or sliced as thinly as possible
  • 2 cups carrots grated or thinly sliced
  • 4 large scallion stalks chopped
  • 1 cup uncooked white rice

For the dressing

  • ¼ cup creamy almond butter
  • ½ tbsp grated ginger
  • 3 tbsp tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp sambal oelek or sriracha
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • Juice from 1 lime
  • ⅓ cup cilantro leaves
  • 1/4 cup hot water

Use a rice cooker to cook the white rice, or cook it on the stovetop per the instructions on the bag.

In a small blender, combine the almond butter, ginger, tamari, sambal oelek, sesame oil, lime juice, cilantro and hot water. Blend until smooth.

In a large bowl, toss the sprouts, carrots and scallions together. Add in the dressing and toss until everything is well combined and creamy.

When the rice has finished cooking, assemble the bowl with 1/2 of your plate being rice, and 1/2 of the plate being the salad. Top with chili oil and sesame seeds. Add avocado on the side if you prefer.

The suggested way to serve it is to mix all the ingredients together, then take a sheet of seaweed and put it on top of the bowl, and use the seaweed to scoop up a bite. But you can really eat it however you like!

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Recipes and facts- Purple Sprouting Broccoli

Purple sprouting broccoli is a delicious and gorgeous alternative to the green heads found during the summer months.

Broccoli is famous for its glucosinolate content, which are phytonutrients that support all processes of detoxification within our bodies.

Purple spouting broccoli is high in vitamin C (1 cup offers 135% of the daily recommended value), so it can also help support your immune system. It also contains vitamins A and K, which help to support the metabolism of vitamin D. A pan of sautéed broccoli will provide you with all these bone supporting vitamins.


Griddled purple sprouting broccoli with peppers and walnuts

Purple sprouting broccoli and kale gratin

Broccoli pesto pasta with whipped lemon tofu

Griddled purple sprouting broccoli with peppers and walnuts

  • roasted red peppers from a jar 2 large
  • sweet smoked paprika ½ tsp
  • garlic 1 clove, crushed
  • lemon ½, juiced
  • olive oil
  • purple sprouting broccoli 350g, trimmed
  • walnuts 40g
  • sourdough bread charred to serve

Pat the peppers dry and dice them. Toss with the paprika, garlic, lemon juice, 1 tbsp olive oil and season.

Blanch the broccoli for 1 minute in a large pan of boiling salted water. Drain, pat dry, then toss the spears with ½ tbsp olive oil. Heat a griddle pan, then char the spears in batches until tender and smoky. When the broccoli is done, tip the walnuts in and toast for 30 seconds, tossing them in the pan.

To serve, put the charred broccoli on a plate, crush over the toasted walnuts with your hands, and add the red peppers, drizzling over the paprika oil from the bowl. Serve with some charred bread if you like.

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Purple sprouting broccoli & kale gratin

  • 400g kale
  • 15g butter
  • 1 small garlic clove , finely chopped
  • really generous grating of fresh nutmeg
  • 300g purple sprouting broccoli
  • 500ml double cream
  • 100g fontina , very thinly sliced
  • 50g parmesan , grated

Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/ gas 6.

Remove the tough stems from the kale, then boil it in lightly salted water for 3-5 mins. Drain and press out the excess water.

Heat the butter in a frying pan and add the kale and garlic.

Cook over a low-to-medium heat for a few mins. Season well and add some nutmeg.

Trim the broccoli and halve any thick stalks lengthways.

Steam for 3-4 mins or until only just tender. Blot with a tea towel to get rid of the moisture on the surface.

Tip the kale into the base of a gratin or casserole dish and place the broccoli on top.

Season well and grate over some nutmeg.

Pour the cream over, then add both cheeses.

Bake in the oven for 30-35 mins or until golden and bubbling.

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Broccoli pesto pasta with whipped lemon tofu – Mob Website

  • 1 Broccoli
  • 4 Cloves Garlic
  • 30g Pine Nuts
  • 20g Basil
  • 280g Extra-Firm Tofu
  • 3 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 tsp White Miso
  • 3 tbsp Nutritional Yeast
  • ¼ tsp Garlic Powder
  • 200g Spaghetti
  • 2 Lemons
  • To serve – Salt + Pepper

Using a food processor, a knife or a pestle and mortar, pulse the basil and pine nuts with a pinch of salt until just pulverised. You want to keep some of the pine nuts whole.

Using the largest side of a box grater, grate the whole broccoli, stem and florets, leaving only the very tough end. Grate the garlic on the smallest side.

Cook the broccoli and garlic in a large pan with about 3 tbsp of olive oil and a pinch of salt, on medium high, for about 8 mins until it’s starting to char.

Add the basil and pine nuts to the pan and cook for another 2-3 mins.

Meanwhile, cook your pasta as per package instructions. Drain and keep a cup of pasta water. Stir the pasta gently through the broccoli pesto in the pan. Add a splash of pasta water and plenty of olive oil.

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Recipes and facts- Aubergine

Aubergines belong to the nightshade family which includes tomatoes, potatoes and peppers. These are all the edible parts of flowering plants from Solanaceae family.

Aubergines are an excellent source of fibre while being low in calories and are a great source of some vitamins and minerals which you need in your diet.

Aubergines are a good source of vitamins B1 and B6. Vitamin B1, also called thiamine, helps your body turn food into energy and can also help keep your nervous system healthy. Vitamin B6, which is also known as pyridoxine, helps the body use and store energy from carbohydrates, and helps keep our red blood cells healthy.

There are lots of ways to cook this unique fruit from roasting and frying to stewing and even BBQ-ing.


Pasta Alla Norma

Aubergine and chickpea bites

Burnt aubergine chilli

Smoked aubergine and walnut ragu

Pasta Alla Norma – From Jamie Oliver Website

  • 2 aubergines
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • ½ a bunch of fresh basil , (15g)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
  • olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon baby capers
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 x 400 g tin of quality plum tomatoes
  • 320 g dried wholewheat spaghetti
  • 50 g pecorino cheese
  • extra virgin olive oil

Chop the aubergines into rough 2cm chunks. Place into a colander in the sink, sprinkle with sea salt to draw out the moisture, then set aside for around 20 minutes.

Peel and finely slice the garlic, then pick the basil leaves and finely slice the stalks.

Rinse the aubergine and pat dry with kitchen paper, then place into a large bowl with the oregano, chilli flakes, a splash of olive oil and a pinch of sea salt and black pepper. Toss together well.

Drizzle a splash of olive oil into a large frying pan over a medium heat. Once hot, add the aubergines in a single layer, and fry for 5 to 8 minutes, or until softened and golden, stirring occasionally – you may need to do this in batches.

Add another splash of olive oil, followed by the garlic, capers and basil stalks, then cook for a further 2 minutes, or until golden.

Stir in the vinegar and the tomatoes, breaking them up with the back of a spoon. Reduce the heat to low, and simmer gently for 15 to 20 minutes, or until thick and glossy.

Cook the spaghetti in a pan of boiling salted water for 8 minutes or until al dente, which means that it should be soft enough to eat, but still have a bit of bite and firmness to it.

Drain the spaghetti, reserving a cupful of the cooking water, then add a good splash of the reserved water to the aubergine sauce.

Finely grate in half the cheese and tear in most of the reserved basil leaves. Add a lug of extra virgin olive oil, then season to taste.

Add the spaghetti to the sauce and toss well, adding an extra splash of the reserved cooking water to loosen, if needed.

Divide between bowls, grate over the remaining cheese and finish with the remaining basil scattered on top.

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Aubergine and chickpea bites – BBC Good Food website

  • 3 large aubergines, halved, cut side scored
  • spray oil
  • 2 fat garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 tsp coriander
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 400g can chickpeas, drained
  • 2 tbsp gram flour
  • 1 lemon, ½ zested and juice, ½ cut into wedges to serve (optional)
  • 3 tbsp polenta

For the dip

  • 1 tbsp harissa (we used Belazu rose harissa)
  • 150g coconut dairy-free yogurt (we used Coyo)

Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Spray the aubergine halves generously with oil, then put them cut-side up in a large roasting tin with the garlic, coriander and cumin seeds. Season, then roast for 40 mins until the aubergine is completely tender. Set aside to cool a little.

Scoop the aubergine flesh into a bowl and discard the skins. Use a spatula to scrape the spices and garlic into the bowl. Add the chickpeas, gram flour, lemon zest and juice, roughly mash together and check the seasoning. Don’t worry if the mix is a bit soft – it will firm up in the fridge.

Shape the mixture into 20 balls and put them on a baking tray lined with baking parchment, then leave to chill in the fridge for at least 30 mins. Swirl the harissa through the yogurt and set aside. Can make ahead to this point the day before and kept covered in the fridge.

Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Tip the polenta onto a plate, roll the balls in it to coat, then return them to the tray and spray each one with a little oil. Roast for 20 mins until crisp, hot and golden. Serve with the harissa yogurt and lemon wedges, if you like.

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Burnt aubergine chilli – From BBC Good Food Website

  • 1 aubergine
  • 1 tbsp olive oil or rapeseed oil
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 2 carrots, finely diced
  • 70g puy lentils or green lentils, rinsed
  • 30g red lentils, rinsed
  • 400g can kidney beans
  • 3 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 20g dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • ¼ tsp chilli powder
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp sweet smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 800ml vegetable stock
  • ½ lime, juiced

To serve – brown rice, tortilla chips, mashed avocado, yogurt or soured cream, grated cheddar, roughly chopped coriander (optional)

If you have a gas hob, put the aubergine directly onto a lit ring to char completely, turning occasionally with kitchen tongs, until burnt all over. Alternatively, use a barbecue or heat the grill to its highest setting and cook, turning occasionally, until completely blackened (the grill won’t give you the same smoky flavour). Set aside to cool on a plate, then peel off the charred skin and remove the stem. Roughly chop the flesh and set aside.

In a large pan, heat the oil, add the onion and carrots with a pinch of salt, and fry over a low-medium heat for 15-20 mins until the carrots have softened.

Add the aubergine, both types of lentils, the kidney beans with the liquid from the can, soy sauce, tomatoes, chocolate, chilli powder, oregano and the spices. Stir to combine, then pour in the stock. Bring to the boil, then turn down the heat to very low. Cover with a lid and cook for 1½ hrs, checking and stirring every 15-20 mins to prevent it from burning.

Remove the lid and let the mixture simmer over a low-medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 15 mins until you get a thick sauce. Stir in the lime juice and taste for seasoning – add more salt if needed. Serve hot over rice with whichever accompaniments you want!

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Smoked aubergine and walnut ragu – Rachel Ama Website

  • Handful of walnuts
  • 1 large aubergine
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 onion
  • 1 celery stick
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 2 large tbsp tomato puree
  • 200ml vegan friendly red wine
  • 800g tomato passata
  • 400ml vegetable stock (only add if your using dried lentils)
  • 1/4 cup dried lentils
  • 1tbsp brown miso paste or soy sauce
  • Salt
  • Cracked black pepper
  • Serve with pasta, fresh herb of choice, extra virgin olive oil

To smoke the aubergine, prick the aubergines a couple of times with a knife or fork. Blacken the aubergines over a barbeque, or gas hob, turning regularly until completely charred. Place in a bowl and cover with lid, let the aubergine cool down and steam to help the skins fall over.

When cooler enough to handle, slit the aubergines lengthways and scoop out the flesh. Finely chop the flesh into a paste.

For the walnuts, soak over night. Drain then pop in a pan, cover with water and bring to a boil then simmer. Cook for 30 mins to 2 hours depending on how much time you have or how soft you want the walnuts. Then remove from pan, drain, and pulse the walnuts in a blender into small crumbs.

For the regu, cook down the onions, celery, and carrots in a generous spoon of olive oil until onions are brown, then add garlic, bay leaves, cover with red wine, bring pan to a boil and cook until wine reduces by half the volume. Then add tomato paste, smoked aubergines, blended walnuts followed by tomato passata. Season generously with salt and some cracked black pepper. Add in dried lentils and vegetables stock cube and water (only add water if you are using dried lentils!).

Place a lid on top and cook down until lentils are soft, anywhere from 20 minutes to 40 minutes.

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Recipes and facts – Onions

Caramelised Onions

  • 6 to 9 medium onions
  • Spray oil as needed or 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed – optional
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed – optional
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Peel the onions, cut in half and slice thinly.

Coat a frying pan with cooking spray or oil.

Over a medium heat, cook the onions for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until soft and golden.

Stir in thyme, rosemary, salt, and pepper.

The onions can then be used to make a variety of dishes – stew, curry, stir fry, onion soup, onion tart or just serve on toast

Recipes and facts – Swede

Swede is a root vegetable that belongs to the cruciferous family, that includes broccoli, cauliflower, kale, cabbage, and Brussel sprouts. Swede is actually a cross between a turnip and cabbage. They are known as rutabaga in the United States but are called swede throughout the rest of the world.

You can add swede to stews, casseroles, soups, roasts, or eat it fried like chips.

Swede has a wide range of health benefits due to it’s excellent source of vitamins and nutrients. This healthy vegetable is particularly high in vitamins C, E, K and B6, as well as being a good source of manganese, potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron, zinc, carotene and fibre.


Buttery Root Vegetable Casserole

Swede gnocchi with crispy sage

Swede Noodles Cacio e Pepe

Buttery Root Vegetable Casserole  –  Allrecipes website

  • 1.7 litres low salt chicken stock
  • 1.35kg potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 675g swedes, peeled and cubed
  • 575g parsnips, peeled and cut into 3.75cm pieces
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 175g butter, softened and divided
  • 3 onions, thinly sliced
  • salt to taste
  • ground black pepper to tast

Combine chicken stock, potatoes, swedes, parsnips, cloves, bay leaf and thyme in a large pot.Bring to the boil.

Reduce heat and partially cover.

Simmer until vegetables are very tender, about 30 minutes. Drain.  

Transfer vegetables to large bowl.

Add 115g butter.

Use an electric mixer, beat mixture until mashed but still chunky.

Season with salt and pepper.

Transfer mashed vegetables to a buttered 23x33cm or similar sized baking dish.  

Melt remaining butter in a heavy large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add sliced onions. Saute until beginning to brown, about 5 minutes.

Reduce heat to medium-low. Saute until onions are tender and golden brown, about 15 minutes.

Season with salt and pepper. Spread onions evenly over mashed vegetables.

Casserole can be prepared up to 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.

Preheat oven to 190 C / Gas 5.

Bake, uncovered, for 25 minutes or until heated through and top begins to crisp.

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Swede gnocchi with crispy sage – BBC Good Food website

  • 400g floury potatoes , such as King Edwards
  • 600g swede , peeled
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 100g ’00’ flour , plus extra for dusting
  • 30g parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), grated, plus extra to serve
  • 100g butter
  • small pack sage leaves picked

Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Cut the potato and swede into equal- sized chunks, drizzle with 2 tbsp of the oil, season and roast for 50 mins or until completely soft. Leave to cool slightly, then pulse in a food processor until broken down. Add the chilli flakes, flour, Parmesan and some seasoning, then pulse again to form a sticky dough.

Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil in which to cook your gnocchi later. Flour your hands and divide the dough in three. On a floured surface, roll each portion into a sausage about 1cm in diameter. Using the back of a table knife, cut into pieces 2.5cm in length – this gives a tapered edge to the pieces of gnocchi.

Working in batches, cook the gnocchi in the water for 30 secs or until they rise to the surface. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on a tray lined with kitchen paper. Can be made to this stage up to 4 hrs ahead and kept in the fridge.

Turn the oven to its lowest setting and heat the remaining oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Fry the gnocchi in batches for 2 mins on each side until browned, then keep warm in the oven.

Melt the butter in the pan, add the sage leaves and fry until crisp. Divide the gnocchi between bowls then spoon over the crisped sage and buttery sauce. Serve with pepper and grated Parmesan.

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Swede Noodles Cacio e Pepe – From The New Yorker website

  • 1 large swede
  • 9 tbsp. cold butter, divided
  • ¼ cup finely minced shallot
  • 10 whole black peppercorns
  • ¼ cup dry white wine
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • ½ tsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • Grated pecorino or parmigiano cheese, to taste
  • Fresh-ground black pepper
  • Minced chives, for garnish

Prepare the swede noodles: Remove the thick, brown outer layer of the swede with a paring knife or a sturdy vegetable peeler. Shave the swede into thin ribbons using a mandoline or a vegetable peeler. (It may be necessary to cut the swede into halves or quarters to do this more easily.) Cut the swede ribbons lengthwise into half-inch strips, and, if you like, square off the ends.

Make the beurre blanc: Cut 8 tablespoons of the butter into chunks and set aside in a cool place. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon butter in a medium saucepan and stir in the shallots and peppercorns. Cook, stirring, for about one minute, until the shallots are aromatic but not beginning to brown. Add the wine and cook until almost entirely reduced, with about two tablespoons remaining. Add the cream and salt and reduce again. (If the pan looks too dry, stir in a tablespoon or two of water.) Add the remaining chilled butter, one piece at a time, stirring briskly with a wire whisk with each addition, continuing to whisk until the sauce is shiny and thick. Strain out the solids (or keep the shallots and just fish out the whole peppercorns). Taste and add more salt, if necessary. Cover and keep the beurre blanc warm over low heat until the rutabaga pasta is ready.

Bring a pot of unsalted water to a boil. Add the swede noodles and blanch for 3 minutes, until just barely softened. Strain the noodles and add them to the pot with the warm beurre blanc. Raise the heat to medium and gently toss the tagliatelle in the butter sauce until the noodles are softened and the sauce clings to each strand, about 4-5 minutes. Serve topped with grated cheese, freshly ground black pepper, and a sprinkle of chives.

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