Thursday, 11 March 2010

Keralan-style Prawn Curry

I couldn't find any curry leaves so I just missed them out. I was wary of making the curry too hot so I also used just one chilli and removed the seeds, but that did make a mild sauce so if you like hot curries then you may want to use two chillis and include the seeds. It is more of a fragrant, tasty curry than a burn-your-mouth hot curry though!

Makes: 4 servings
Takes: 40 minutes (including cooking time)


2 tbsp mild olive oil
150g shallots
3 cloves garlic or 3 tsp garlic puree
20g fresh root ginger or ginger puree
1-2 fresh green chillis
1 tsp turmeric
small bunch fresh coriander
About 30 curry leaves
200ml vegetable stock
400ml tin of coconut milk
200g green beans
300g large raw peeled prawns

  1. Peel and slice the shallots and fry them in 1 tbsp of the oil till softened but not coloured. Peel and slice the garlic and peel and chop the ginger (if not using purees). Slice the chillis, removing the seeds if desired. Remove the leaves from the coriander and set aside for now.
  2. Put the shallots, garlic, ginger, chillis, turmeric and coriander stalks into a blender and blitz to a coarse paste.
  3. Heat the remaining oil in a large pan and fry the curry leaves for 1 minute (if using). Add the curry paste and cook for 3 minutes then add the stock and coconut milk. Simmer for about 15 minutes.
  4. Trim the green beans and cut into short pieces. Add to the sauce and cook for 5 minutes, then add the prawns and cook for a further 3-4 minutes, until cooked through. Season and stir in the coriander leaves before serving.
You can make the sauce in advance then bring back to simmering point and add the beans and prawns when ready to eat.
You could also use fillets of white fish, such as cod, instead of the prawns.

Friday, 5 March 2010

Ginger Tiramisu

I love tiramisu but can't cope with caffeine in the evening - not if I want to sleep, anyway! This version is caffeine-free and full of flavour :-)

Makes: 6-8 servings
Takes: 20 minutes + 2 hours chilling time


3 balls ginger from a jar of stem ginger in syrup
4 tbsp syrup from the same jar
250g mascarpone
300 ml double cream
6 tbsp sweet sherry
3 tbsp orange juice
200g gingernut biscuits (approx)

  1. Cut the ginger into small cubes and set aside.
  2. Beat together the ginger syrup and mascarpone until smooth. Whip the cream till it forms soft peaks then fold into the mascarpone.
  3. Mix together the sherry and orange juice in a shallow bowl.
  4. Spread one-third of the mascarpone mixture in the bottom of a serving dish. Dip the biscuits into the sherry and orange juice for a few seconds (not too long or they will be soggy) then arrange a layer on top of the mascarpone, breaking the biscuits into pieces to fill in any gaps.
  5. Scatter one-third of the chopped ginger over the biscuits then repeat the layers of mascarpone, dipped biscuits and chopped ginger. (You may not need all the biscuits.)
  6. Spread the remaining mascarpone over the top and sprinkle over the rest of the ginger pieces. Cover with cling film and refrigerate for at least 2 hours so the flavours have a chance to develop.