|July-September is local foods feast time!|
A real feast of local produce is starting in the North East now that the rain is making the pastures grow for the sheep and cattle and the warmth is ripening the peas and raspberries.
2 tbsp of olive oil
1 locally grown red onion, chopped finely
300g of risotto rice
400ml well seasoned vegetable stock
600g locally grown peas in the pod, podded
Handful of mint leaves, finely chopped
100g Doddington cheese
Heat the oil in a saucepan and sweat the onion. Add the rice and let it take up the oil, then pour in the vegetable stock and bring to the boil, then add the peas, boil again and turn the heat right down. Leave for about seven minutes or until the rice has soaked up most of the stock. Add the salt, if needed, then the chopped mint leaves and finely grated cheese, stirring them in. Place the lid on the saucepan and leave to settle for about five minutes before serving.
Courgette Soup: an unusual recipe from Lebanon is a good way to use locally grown courgettes
300g courgettes cut into small chunks
590 ml milk or half milk, half vegetable stock
3 thin slices of lemon peel
Pinch of turmeric
Handful of fresh mint, finely chopped
1-2 tablespoonfuls lemon juice
Salt & pepper
Heat a little water in a pan and cook the courgettes for a few minutes until they are soft, drain and then mash and set on one side.
Pour the milk/stock into a saucepan and bring to the boil and then remove from the heat.
Melt the butter in another pan and add the flour and turmeric and stir to make a smooth paste. Cook for 2 minutes stirring all the time. Take off the heat and add the milk/stock stirring constantly so that no lumps form. Then put back onto the heat and continue to stir while it thickens.
Add the mashed courgettes and lemon peel, season to taste and continue stirring until the soup is hot. Pour in the lemon juice and add more liquid if necessary to achieve the consistency you prefer. Remove the lemon peel and serve with a sprinkle of chopped mint.