edited by Sue Courtney
e-mail address: email@example.com
Suddenly winter has arrived and with it the shortest day of the New Zealand year. After a mild autumn, the cold snap was a shock to the system - even here in Auckland where winters are relatively mild. But even on a mild day, as soon as the sun is obscured by the clouds and you are hit by the wintry blast blowing straight off Antarctica bring snow to the mountains, you really know that winter is here.
People are readying themselves for the midwinter swim this weekend. Here are some dishes that you can prepare beforehand, a soup to quickly reheat and a casserole for long slow cooking, the heat of the oven warming the house as well as cooking the dinner. And what better to warm up the cockles than a glass of spicy mulled wine.
Chrissy's Yummy Vegetable Soup
- 1 cup of brown lentils
- 2 litres water
- 1 onion.
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 stalk of celery, chopped
- 1 cup each of grated carrot, parsnip, pumpkin or root vegetables of choice
- 1 tsp coriander seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1/2 tsp garam masala
- 1 tbsp sugar
- salt and pepper
- 1 tsp powdered chicken stock
- 1 1/2 cups (or 1 tin) of peeled roasted garlic tomatoes - it you have your own preserved or frozen tomatoes from the summer, these are good to use.
- 2 cups of chopped silver beet or spinach - or other greens of preference, e.g. peas or beans.
- More water as required
Soak a cup of brown lentils in 2 litres of water while you are gathering and preparing the other ingredients.
Notes: Instead of using chicken stock powder you could make your own stock using use homemade chicken stock from the leftover bones of a well-seasoned roast chicken - have the roast chicken the night before.
Lamb in a Voluptuous Red Wine Sauce
For the Reduction
For the Lamb
Prick the skin of the leg of lamb many tines.
On the left: Marinading lam supported by corks
On the right: Lamb coated with mustard and surrounded with red wine, just before cooking
After marinading, pour the liquid into a large over proof dish.
Add whole mushrooms to the liquid for the last 30 minutes of cooking.
At end of cooking time, remove lamb onto a plate to keep warm and place the mushrooms alongside.
Pour the cooking liquid into a saucepan - there will be 3 to 4 cups of liquid altogether.
Mash the boiled potato and kumara with a little honey, butter and milk. It's good for soaking up excess sauce. I also did some crispy roast spuds and pumpkin baked in a separate dish alongside the lamb. Green beans added colour.
Carve the meat and plate. Place the mushrooms on top. Serve the thick, rich, opulent sauce alongside it.
There were leftovers. I have to save that the next day the cold lamb meat from this dish was the best I have ever tasted.
You will need:
Into a large saucepan place the water, sugar, citrus and spices.
For this recipe I would choose a fairly cheap wine. This means we are headed into the overseas (i.e. Aussie section) of the supermarket wine department. I would choose something spicy and tasting, something like the ever-reliable Jacobs Creek Shiraz.
Kia pai te kai
© Sue Courtney
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