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20 September 14
Paccheri Trapani style
Warm 150g almonds in a pan (skin on or off) and smash them in a mortar and pestle. Set aside. Then smash each of the following separately in the same way: 1 garlic clove and 4 large handfuls of fresh basil leaves. Add to the almonds.
Take 600g cherry tomatoes, cut in half and then scrunch them up well into the bowl with the other ingredients.
Boil up 500g paccheri or other similar pasta till just done. Drain, put back in the pot, along with the almond mixture and a good glug of olive oil and 150g parmesan or pecorino

Paccheri Trapani style

Warm 150g almonds in a pan (skin on or off) and smash them in a mortar and pestle. Set aside. Then smash each of the following separately in the same way: 1 garlic clove and 4 large handfuls of fresh basil leaves. Add to the almonds.

Take 600g cherry tomatoes, cut in half and then scrunch them up well into the bowl with the other ingredients.

Boil up 500g paccheri or other similar pasta till just done. Drain, put back in the pot, along with the almond mixture and a good glug of olive oil and 150g parmesan or pecorino

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17 September 14

Aperitivo hour at a Calabrian wedding

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Posted: 11:16 PM
Watermelon Cooler 
In a blender purée chunks of watermelon and then pass through a fine sieve into a pitcher (should make 500ml), discarding the seeds and fibre.
Add 125ml vodka, 60ml Cointreau and 45ml lime juice. Pour over ice into small tumblers.

Watermelon Cooler 

In a blender purée chunks of watermelon and then pass through a fine sieve into a pitcher (should make 500ml), discarding the seeds and fibre.

Add 125ml vodka, 60ml Cointreau and 45ml lime juice. Pour over ice into small tumblers.

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7 September 14
Kale salad with Japanese sesame dressing
In a mixing bowl place 30ml (2tbs) each of mayonnaise, rice vinegar, and ground sesame seed paste (you can get them in tubes at the Japanese supermarket or pound some yourself with a mortar and pestle). 15ml (1tbs) each of Tamari, agave nectar, sesame oil and miso. Add a pinch of salt. Whisk together till well combined. 
Adjust to taste with any of the above.
Shred some raw kale and place in a salad bowl. Drizzle with the salad dressing and sprinkle with roasted sesame seeds.

Kale salad with Japanese sesame dressing

In a mixing bowl place 30ml (2tbs) each of mayonnaise, rice vinegar, and ground sesame seed paste (you can get them in tubes at the Japanese supermarket or pound some yourself with a mortar and pestle). 15ml (1tbs) each of Tamari, agave nectar, sesame oil and miso. Add a pinch of salt. Whisk together till well combined. 

Adjust to taste with any of the above.

Shred some raw kale and place in a salad bowl. Drizzle with the salad dressing and sprinkle with roasted sesame seeds.

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Posted: 6:01 PM
Mackerel Teriyaki
You can also substitute the mackerel with salmon fillets.
In a small bowl whisk together 45ml (3tbs) each of soy sauce, sake, and mirin. Add 15ml (1tbs) sugar and zap in the microwave for around 15 seconds to dissolve the sugar. Whisk again.
Place two mackerels* (filleted) in a shallow dish and pour over the liquid, Marinade for 30 minutes.
Remove the fillets from the dish and place in a non-stick baking dish skin side up and grill for a couple of minutes on each side (turning them over carefully).
Meanwhile, place the marinade in a small pan, add 10ml (2tsp) sugar and quickly bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and brush generously onto one side of the fillets. Return to the oven till the fish surface bubbles. Repeat on the other side of the fillets.
Place onto a serving dish and brush with a bit more marinade to glaze.

Mackerel Teriyaki

You can also substitute the mackerel with salmon fillets.

In a small bowl whisk together 45ml (3tbs) each of soy sauce, sake, and mirin. Add 15ml (1tbs) sugar and zap in the microwave for around 15 seconds to dissolve the sugar. Whisk again.

Place two mackerels* (filleted) in a shallow dish and pour over the liquid, Marinade for 30 minutes.

Remove the fillets from the dish and place in a non-stick baking dish skin side up and grill for a couple of minutes on each side (turning them over carefully).

Meanwhile, place the marinade in a small pan, add 10ml (2tsp) sugar and quickly bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and brush generously onto one side of the fillets. Return to the oven till the fish surface bubbles. Repeat on the other side of the fillets.

Place onto a serving dish and brush with a bit more marinade to glaze.

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25 August 14
Raspberry, passion fruit and amaretti parfait
In each of four wide glasses place two amaretti biscuits (crushed). Drizzle each with a 1tbs amaretto.
In a mixing bowl, mix together 250ml thick Greek yogurt, 150ml extra thick single cream, 1/3 cup coconut powder, passion fruit jam to taste.
Divide between the four glasses. Top with raspberries (around 150g).
Serves 4.

Raspberry, passion fruit and amaretti parfait

In each of four wide glasses place two amaretti biscuits (crushed). Drizzle each with a 1tbs amaretto.

In a mixing bowl, mix together 250ml thick Greek yogurt, 150ml extra thick single cream, 1/3 cup coconut powder, passion fruit jam to taste.

Divide between the four glasses. Top with raspberries (around 150g).

Serves 4.

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15 August 14
Brownies
In a mixer, cream together 170g softened butter, 300g sugar (1 1/2 cups), and 2 tsp vanilla extract. Beat in 3 eggs. Set aside.
In a large bowl, mix together 100g flour (3/4 cup), with 60g cocoa (1/2 cup), 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/2 tsp baking powder. Fold the wet mixture into the flour mixture and fold lightly till blended.
Bake in a 20cm (8inch) square pan, lined with parchment paper for 25 minutes at 170c till a knife comes out clean. Do not overbake!
Let cool before removing from the pan and cutting into 16 squares.
Optional: for an extra chocolatey flavour fold in 50g chopped dark chocolate into the mixture before pouring into the pan,

Brownies

In a mixer, cream together 170g softened butter, 300g sugar (1 1/2 cups), and 2 tsp vanilla extract. Beat in 3 eggs. Set aside.

In a large bowl, mix together 100g flour (3/4 cup), with 60g cocoa (1/2 cup), 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/2 tsp baking powder. Fold the wet mixture into the flour mixture and fold lightly till blended.

Bake in a 20cm (8inch) square pan, lined with parchment paper for 25 minutes at 170c till a knife comes out clean. Do not overbake!

Let cool before removing from the pan and cutting into 16 squares.

Optional: for an extra chocolatey flavour fold in 50g chopped dark chocolate into the mixture before pouring into the pan,

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7 August 14
English finger sandwiches - earl grey tea-smoked salmon and Persian cucumber
Take 8 slices of thin cut white sandwich bread and stacking them in twos, slice off the crusts.
Butter the insides thinly to the edge and lay thin slices of smoked salmon (around 200g - Heston for Waitrose does a nice tea smoked version)in one layer on the buttered sides of four of the slices. Add a drizzle of freshly squeezed lemon juice and close the sandwiches delicately.
On the other four slices, place (on one side only) thin slices of Persian cucumber which have been lightly salted. Close the sandwiches delicately.
Slice each of the sandwiches into four squares and transfer to a serving plate or an insulated bag (if taking on a picnic)

English finger sandwiches - earl grey tea-smoked salmon and Persian cucumber

Take 8 slices of thin cut white sandwich bread and stacking them in twos, slice off the crusts.

Butter the insides thinly to the edge and lay thin slices of smoked salmon (around 200g - Heston for Waitrose does a nice tea smoked version)in one layer on the buttered sides of four of the slices. Add a drizzle of freshly squeezed lemon juice and close the sandwiches delicately.

On the other four slices, place (on one side only) thin slices of Persian cucumber which have been lightly salted. Close the sandwiches delicately.

Slice each of the sandwiches into four squares and transfer to a serving plate or an insulated bag (if taking on a picnic)

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3 August 14

Petersham Nurseries - a post-foraging dinner

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2 August 14
Fried courgette flowers
Lightly wash a dozen courgette flowers, the baby courgettes, still attached.
In a shallow bowl, mix together 2 heaping tbs flour, a pinch of sea salt, and a very small handful of fresh, picked, thyme leaves. Whisk in a little water, till a loose paste is formed.
Add the flowers and coat well.
In a large frying pan, heat up a shallow amount of rapeseed/canola oil. Fry the courgette flowers on both sides till golden.
Drain on kitchen towel and salt lightly.
Serve immediately.

Fried courgette flowers

Lightly wash a dozen courgette flowers, the baby courgettes, still attached.

In a shallow bowl, mix together 2 heaping tbs flour, a pinch of sea salt, and a very small handful of fresh, picked, thyme leaves. Whisk in a little water, till a loose paste is formed.

Add the flowers and coat well.

In a large frying pan, heat up a shallow amount of rapeseed/canola oil. Fry the courgette flowers on both sides till golden.

Drain on kitchen towel and salt lightly.

Serve immediately.

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Posted: 8:20 PM
Cherry season

Cherry season

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31 May 14
Campari Sunset
In a jug, mix together 1 part* freshly squeezed orange juice, 1 part pink grapefruit juice, 1 part Campari and a swig of grenadine (or raspberry cordial).
Pour over ice into three glasses.
Serves three.
* 1 part = 100ml (multiply the recipe up or down according to the number of servings required)

Campari Sunset

In a jug, mix together 1 part* freshly squeezed orange juice, 1 part pink grapefruit juice, 1 part Campari and a swig of grenadine (or raspberry cordial).

Pour over ice into three glasses.

Serves three.

* 1 part = 100ml (multiply the recipe up or down according to the number of servings required)

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18 April 14
Posh Provençal Easter egg from Joel Durand

Posh Provençal Easter egg from Joel Durand

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Posted: 9:40 AM

Barcelona food markets and tapas

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7 February 14
Chorizo & red onion tarts
Serve with a salad for a simple lunch or as a starter.
Fry 1  large red onion, thinly sliced in a little olive oil till translucent (about 5 minutes on a medium heat). Add 150g chorizo sausage cut into small dice (skins removed), stir and continue frying an additional 5-7 minutes till the onion is soft.
Distribute evenly between 6 pre-baked savoury shortcrust pastry tarts (store bought will do fine). 
Whisk together 120ml single cream with 1 large egg. Season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Distribute evenly over the tarts.
Place in a hot oven (200c) for 13-15 minutes till puffed up and golden. 
Serves 6.

Chorizo & red onion tarts

Serve with a salad for a simple lunch or as a starter.

Fry 1  large red onion, thinly sliced in a little olive oil till translucent (about 5 minutes on a medium heat). Add 150g chorizo sausage cut into small dice (skins removed), stir and continue frying an additional 5-7 minutes till the onion is soft.

Distribute evenly between 6 pre-baked savoury shortcrust pastry tarts (store bought will do fine). 

Whisk together 120ml single cream with 1 large egg. Season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Distribute evenly over the tarts.

Place in a hot oven (200c) for 13-15 minutes till puffed up and golden. 

Serves 6.

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Themed by Hunson.