Welcome to our September edition Cooking Along With The Cottage Cooking Club joining in with other food bloggers from throughout the world and sharing the cookbook, River Cottage veg everyday, written by British author and TV host, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. This month on Spiced Peach Blog we feature four dishes from among the months recipe selections chosen by our fearless leader, Andrea, from The Kitchen Lioness, Notes from a very small German Kitchen. Andrea, an amazing photographer and food stylist, additionally shares some wonderful travel stories and happenings throughout Germany on her blog, such as this weeks Post on her recent visit to the annual Putzchens Markt in Bonn. Hop on over and say Hi, Andrea always graciously responds, and in any among a few languages that you may speak. Now, onward.
Favorite recipe pic of the month, Cauliflower Pakors shown above. Prepared with a chick pea (garbanzo) flour and mixed with some baking powder and a variety of Indian style spices, the slight double cream thickness of the batter lent well forming an almost similar to corn bread coating in flavor once deep fried. While the spices were not as prominent as anticipated, still the crunchy outer texture complimented the inner texture, even heightening the delicate taste of the cauliflower. The crispy florets were served alongside a tamarind raita in the book, though I opted for the alternative mango chutney, in retrospect, a lighter fluidity of the raita I do believe would have provided tastier fare.
Mushroom Risoniotto. Ahem. Yes. Using orzo combined with mushrooms seems like a good idea, but it was the beginning of my this months taste testers recurring theme, ‘dial it up‘. I had to agree, the dish just left me missing something, even despite extra salt. The caramelized mushrooms then brought together in a sort of balsamic glaze were excellent, but once combined with the orzo didn’t seem to bring enough flavor punch to the dish as a whole. I’ve been thinking on how the orzo might have fared with a reduction butter sauce, or simmering the orzo with added broth similar to risotto.
Puy Lentil and Spinach Soup. My first disclaimer here is although the bulk French Lentils used in this dish were labeled ‘French’ at the Whole Foods Market, Puy Lentils are an AOC protected designation of origin product, meaning, they may only be called Puy if the lentils are specifically from such region, so here we have French Green Lentil and Spinach Soup. A basic recipe in its preparation, my grandson the J-Dude considered the finished product topped with a few torn pieces of fresh mint and crumbled goat cheese “very good lentil soup.” On the other hand, my friend Marcelle from Lebanon who prepares excellent Lebanese Lentil with Lemon Soup felt the soup, needed, well, ‘dialing up’, a lot more flavor. Now in my house I guess you could say I have a very international pantry of products, and then, including one bagged shelved item that consists of green lentils purchased from our local Indian market. Marcelle didn’t miss a beat to scold me in her boisterous, strongly Lebanese accented voice for purchasing the French green lentils when I had a perfectly good bag of green lentils already on the shelf. ‘Why you do this?’ she asked. She had a point.
Oven Roasted Roots Frittata was an interesting twist lending the bright colors reminiscent of fall including deep red roasted beets, shaded orange gold cubes of yam and butternut squash interspersed with the pale green baby leeks from my garden. I have to admit that the summer veg frittata prepared as one among our Cottage Cooking Club selections in July went over so well, in all fairness, it would be difficult to top. My next door neighbors having sampled both frittatas still enjoyed the root combination pieces of roasted beets, yams, leeks, and summer squash, though this dish too may possibly have been dialed up as well using an alternative to goat cheese, perhaps a good sharp cheddar or Swiss.
And that’s the wrap up for September Cottage Cooking Club. You can read what other members have prepared this month here.