Gordon Ramsay Roasted Squash Hummus

I freely admit that I made this as an excuse to eat more of the yummy sour dough bread that I made (which paired perfectly by the way.  No pitas needed).  It was delicious and I would make it again.  It does make A LOT.  I threw some in the freezer for a hummus emergency.  You never know when you’ll have a hummus emergency.

Tahini is still hard to find these days.  If you can’t find any it’s available online, or you can substitute some toasted sesame oil or another nut butter.  For this I would go the sesame oil route.  I don’t like peanut-y hummus.

Your life will be a lot easier if you prep this completely before starting.  It also helps if you are angry because that is a LOT of seeds to crush with a mortar and pestle.  For the first time I find myself wanting to invest in a spice grinder.

I had to add a lot more lemon and salt for this to taste like hummus for me.  In the future I might add less squash, but it was still very delicious.

Gordon makes a Ras El Hanout Spice Blend.  I had to google it.  It’s a blend commonly used in North Africa and Morocco.  It’s delicious.  I want to put it on french fries…

You Will Need:

  • 1 butternut squash, about 2 lbs, peeled, seeded and cubed.
  • 2 garlic cloves (I used 4) peeled and smashed
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • Olive Oil
  • Sea Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper
  • 1 TBSP Tahini
  • One 14-ounce can of chick peas
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon (I used the juice of a whole small lemon.  Start with half and adjust at the end)
  • Warmed or grilled pita bread or flatbread to serve.  I used sourdough.  It was divine.

For the Ras El Hanout Spice Blend

  • 1 Cinnamon Stick
  • 1 tsp cloves
  • 1 Tbsp coriander seeds
  • 1/2 Tbsp Fenugreek seeds
  • 1/2 Tbsp fennel seeds
  • 1 Tbsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1/2 Tbsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 tsp paprika

Prepare The Spice Blend

Break the cinnamon stick into pieces.  Place in a dry pan with the cloves and seeds, toast over medium heat for about 1 minute  until aromatic and the seeds are popping.  Shake to keep from burning.

Once toasted, remove from heat and add the paprika.  Place in a spice grinder, blender, or mortar and grind until the mixture is a powder – sift if necessary.  This will keep for up to 3 months in an airtight container.

Preheat oven to 350F

Make The Hummus

In a large bowl mix the squash, garlic, and ginger with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 1 tbsp of the spice blend.  Season with salt and pepper and scatter in a singer layer in a roasting pan.  Place in the preheated oven and cook for 30 min until tender.

Add the squash to a blender, add tahini, chickpeas, and a squeeze of lemon juice along with 2 tbsp of olive oil.  Blend until smooth.  Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary.  You might need some extra lemon juice.

Transfer to a bowl and sprinkle with a little of the spice mix.  Drizzle with olive oil and serve.

Watch Gordon make this here.

Let us know how you like it!

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Gordon Ramsay’s Soda Bread

Gordon Ramsay’s tv shows are a little unconventional but his food is actually tasty.  I didn’t find anything in this book that I thought was overwhelmingly original, but most of it tastes great and it does what it promises, which is teaching home cooks how to make classic food taste good. 20160331_154035

I made this bread before I researched other bread recipes online because of most of the things in this book work out and I was lazy.  Bad idea.  Most other soda breads, including other at home cooks who have made this one, bake for 40-55 minutes. This book instructs you to cook it for 30-35 and then tap the bottom to make sure it’s done (you are listening for a hollow sound).  My first attempt was still very raw in the middle.  It took a full 50 minutes to cook this bread through and it could have used another five.  Frustrating to say the least.  That being said, it is very delicious.  It is a hearty bread and tastes like buttermilk biscuits.  I made it to go with my homemade turkey soup and it held up well to being dipped. It is also lovely toasted with jam the next day.  Being soda bread, it dries out quickly so is best eaten the first night.  I made Sweet Potato Stuffing with the leftovers and it was amazing.  Make sure your soda is fresh or you will end up with heavy, doughy bread.

 

You Will Need:

  • 3 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 and 1/4 cups of whole wheat flour
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp of sugar
  • 2 cups of buttermilk.

Note:  Gordon suggests if you don’t have buttermilk to use regular milk and a level teaspoon of cream of tartar.  This works just fine.  I have tried both methods.

Prepare The Dough

Preheat the oven to 400F.  Sift the dry ingredients into a bowl and make a well.  Gordon instructs you to reserve 2 tbsp of the buttermilk aside, this is good advice.  The humidity of your flour changes all the time and your may need more or less depending on conditions and your flour.  Pour the buttermilk into the well while stirring with a fork.  Make sure all the dry ingredients are worked in but don’t mix more than you have to.  If the dough hasn’t quite come together and seems dry, add the reserved buttermilk.  I had to each time I made it except for the time when I used the buttermilk substitute.

Shape And Bake The Loaf

Tip the dough out onto a floured work surface and knead for 30 seconds (I just kneaded it 30 times until it started to feel like bread dough).  It almost shapes itself when it’s ready.  Make a round and cut a deep cross into it with a bread knife.  Gordon cooks his on a floured baking sheet, I put mine on a stoneware baking pan, either is fine. Pop it in the oven.  Gordon’s recipe suggests 30-35 minutes.  I would check it after 30.  It will be a deep golden brown when it’s done and when you tap the bottom it will sound like you’re knocking on a door.  If it’s not done i will sound dull when you tap it.  Look carefully at the cross too.  Does any part of it look wet?  Put it back in the oven if it does.

Let me know what your cooking time was.  My burn-o-matic oven is not the most reliable, but I rarely have an issue with underbaking things.

 

 

Ramsay’s Corn Fritters With Yogurt Dip

By Julie

Serves:  4 (6-8 fritters)

Time:  20min

This is the first thing I made out of Ramsay’s book.  I was intrigued by the fact that he would use such a humble ingredient as canned corn.  Yes, canned corn.  Not fresh, not even frozen, but canned.  And you know what?  It was delicious.

The yogurt sauce is a necessary companion.  You really need the spice and tang to go with the sweet corn fritter.  They are easy to whip up on a week night, and fun for kids.  I used 2% milk because that’s what I had and they were fine.  I served this with an arugula and spinach salad with a light citrus dressing and everyone cleaned their plates.

You Will Need:

For The Fritters

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • Olive Oil
  • 2 scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 1 red chile, seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 1 8-ounce can of sweet corn, drained and dried on paper towel

For The Dip

  • 1 cup of plain yogurt (I used greek)
  • 1/2 red chile seeded and finely chopped
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 3 Tbsp chopped cilantro
  • Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper

Make The Dip

Mix together the dip ingredients and taste.  Adjust as necessary for your liking.

Make The Fritters

Sift the flour and baking powder into a mixing bowl.  Season with salt and pepper, mix together and make a well in the center.  Add the egg and milk and whisk, gradually bringing the wet ingredients into the dry to make a smooth batter.  Add 1 tbsp of olive oil and whisk again until smooth.

Stir the scallions, chile, cilantro, and corn into the batter and mix well.

Heat a large frying pan and add a glug of oil.  Put about 3/4 cup of the mixture in the pan for each fritter into the hot pan and push it down lightly.  Fry in batches for 1-2 minutes on each side until golden.  Keep warm.

 

You can watch Ramsay make it himself for additional tips and tricks:

Corn Fritters with Yogurt Dip

Pork Chops with Peppers-Gordon Ramsay’s Home Cooking

By: Corinne

A few years ago I bought my friend Julie the Smitten Kitchen Cookbook, a book by Deb Perelman of the http://smittenkitchen.com/ blog. We both adore the book and her blog. In part it was this exchange that got us talking about cooking, which has since led to this blog 🙂

Julie, being the thoughtful and wonderful person who she is, thought it would be fun to cook out of another cookbook together and I found this wonderful package in the mail one day.

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In addition to all of her other qualities, Julie is a creative and accomplished scrapbooker (and scrap blogger if that is a thing?) She made the gorgeous card to go with the book and the beautiful jelly.

The first recipe from this book I tried was the the Pork Chops with Peppers. An odd choice since pork chops are NOT one of my favourite things.

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I followed the recipe pretty much to the letter. After all, I wouldn’t want Chef Ramsay to yell at me – though I’m sure he’s lovely in real life.  Things I would note- there is a generous amount of peppers and onions! I was a bit skeptical about the amount of sugar, as I often find in ‘sweet and sour’ type recipes mostly just end up sweet. I went with it and it wasn’t too much. I actually made three pork chops not two- and as you can see in my photo there are no shortage of peppers and onions on my chop. I actually quite liked this, which is a bit surprising because pork chops are not my favourite- I usually only make them when someone else requests them. The instructions in the book are clear and precise. The following video is Gordon preparing this recipe from his book.

Gordon Ramsay’s Home Cooking

By Julie

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There is a lot of information in this book.  A lot.  Everything from how to chop an onion, to how to give your ribs extra flavor.  Home Cooking is a bible of everyday tips and information on how to be a better home cook.  This book is suitable for beginners and has a little something for everyone.

Remember that Ramsay is from the U.K. and does not measure in cups and teaspoons, but milliliters.   There are one or two things I have found that didn’t make very much sense but I’m thinking that the team that “Americanized” the book may have made some translation errors or they could be just plain typos.  After making a few things I have learned to research the recipe first online and read what worked and didn’t work for other people.

Everything I made worked out, with some tweaks.  The only thing I made that I didn’t like was the noodle soup with poached egg and that’s because I didn’t have white miso.  It’s unavailable locally and is outrageous online so I worked around it with mixed results.  Also the mushroom quantity is way off and it ruined the flavour.

What’s the best thing that happened from this book?

I learned about the wonders of fish sauce.  Yum!

All that being said, I will continue to try things from this book and it will stay in my collection.

Most of the recipes are available online if you are not into buying the book and some are even on you-tube with Ramsay himself.  The recipes in this book are also featured on Ramsay’s show, Home Cooking.

I encourage you to take a look and try some out.  Let us know how it goes!