Guest blogger this week is our daughter Victoria…
Mum and Dad are always inviting us over for the most amazing meals and its only very rarely that I get to return the favor… may have something to do with our two lively young sons taking up most of our ‘spare’ time!
Most of what I cook includes some stratta addition and I have so many of their products that my husband had to build some special shelves in the kitchen to house them all.
We were lucky to choose a warm day for our get-together so managed to eat in the garden.
The starter was based on a recipe I found in Country Living magazine and was enjoyed by everyone. I love the combination of sweet fruit and parma ham and this had the added bonus of using Mum and Dad’s newly 3-star-gold award winning elderflower vinegar in the dressing.
The Salmon dish has been a staple of mine for over 10 years and always ends up with our 7 year old Charlie eating his and everyone else’s salmon skins! The charred potatoes were a surprisingly gorgeous addition and I will be repeating the happy accident of leaving the gas on under the dry cooked potatoes again in the future.
Mum insisted on bringing the desert and boy am I glad she did. Dad had made the frozen yoghurt in advance and Mum knocked up the bananas and toffee sauce in little more time than it took everyone to lick their bowls clean.
This is a meal I could eat every week…
Starter: Peach, mozzarella and Parma ham salad with elderflower dressing
- 4 ripe peaches, stoned
- 300g buffalo mozzarella
- 12 slices Parma ham
- 100g lamb’s lettuce
For the dressing
- 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons stratta elderflower vinegar
- squeeze of lemon
- ½ teaspoon wholegrain mustard
- Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
To make the dressing place all ingredients into a bottle with a lid and shake well.
Slice the peaches and mozzarella. Arrange with all the other ingredients on 6 plates, drizzle with the elderflower dressing and serve immediately.
Main course: Salmon fillets with roasted peppers, seasonal vegetables and charred new potatoes
- 6 fresh sustainably sourced salmon fillets
- 2 unwaxed lemons
- few sprigs of lemon balm
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 30ml stratta lavender vinegar
- splash of white wine
- 750g new potatoes
- Knob of butter
- 5 red and yellow peppers
- 1 curly courgette (from the garden)
- 5/6 cloves garlic pealed and left whole
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Seasonal green vegetables (we had broccoli and green beans)
Heat the oven to 180ºC.
Core and de-seed the peppers, top and tail the courgette and roughly chop into a large baking tray. Add in the garlic and toss it all with olive oil to coat the vegetables.
Cook for 25 to 30 minutes, turning over once.
Line a deep casserole dish with kitchen foil and lay the prepared salmon fillets along it on top of a bed of lemon balm.
Slice one of the lemons and lay the slices on top of each of the fillets. Drizzle over the white wine and stratta lavender vinegar, juice from the remaining lemon and season with freshly ground black pepper.
Cover with another sheet of foil, sealing the edges.
Cook for 15-20 minutes.
Boil the new potatoes with a sprig of mint. By accident I ended up putting the cooked potatoes back on the heat once drained of the water for about 4 minutes. They ended up blackened on the bottoms and tasted delicious – just like the potatoes we used to have baked in a “Thomas kartoffelfeuer” clay pot. Dress with butter.
Steam the green vegetables for a few minutes.
Place the salmon directly on plates and pour and remaining juices into a jug to serve at the table. Take the vegetables out to the table in serving dishes for everyone to help themselves.
Desert: Caramelised bananas and toffee sauce with vanilla frozen yoghurt
For the frozen yoghurt (made in an ice-cream machine)
- 280ml whole milk
- 175g honey
- 575g Greek organic yoghurt
- 50ml double cream
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Place the milk and honey in a medium bowl, whisk together until combined. Stir in the yoghurt, cream and vanilla. Cover and chill for 2-3 hours
Place the mixture in an ice-cream machine as per the instructions and set the timer to 45-60 minutes.
For the bananas
- 6 peeled and thickly sliced bananas
- Knob of butter
- 3 heaped tablespoons brown sugar
- Slosh of rum
- Small pot of single cream
- Large pinch of cardamom if you like
- Small squeeze of lime (or a dash of stratta vinegar if you prefer)
Fry the bananas in the butter, letting them colour on both sides.
In a separate pan mix the sugar, rum and cream together over a medium heat.
Add the cardamom if using, bring to the boil and stir for a minute or two then stir in a small squeeze of lime juice.
Divide the bananas between bowls with vanilla frozen yoghurt and spoon over the warm sauce.