Making a “mezze” of things…..

I recently had a culinary epiphany – BLACK TAHINI.

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Just make up your hummus as normal, using regular tahini, and then mix through a swirl of this stuff….

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It’s all natural, made from black sesame seeds. I topped mine off with some nice olive oil, fresh lemon juice, and a sprinkling of black sesame seeds.

It tastes fantastic, and looks (in my opinion) incredible.

I liked it so much that I had to make it the centrepiece of a mezze….

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On the plates we have harissa griddled aubergine, zaatar griddled courgette (from the garden). salad and sprouts (in a light vinaigrette) . Left to right – patatas bravas, stuffed vineleaves/dolmades (cheated – they’re from a tin!), garlic and pimenton sausage and beans, and of course the hummus.

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I roasted cubed potatoes in a mix of sweet pimenton, cayenne pepper, black pepper and coconut sugar, and then baked them in a tomato, garlic and chilli sauce….

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I opened a tin of dolmades. The hard bit was not eating them all as I cooked….

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A pack of WHEATY MERGUEZ sausages, a pack of frozen edamame beans, fried up in olive oil with lots of smoked paprika and garlic – my take on the classic chorizo and fava dish.

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The aubergine was marinaded in HARRY BRAND HARISSA, lemon juice and olive oil. Then griddled, and then baked until it was “melt-in-the-mouth”. The courgette was marinaded in lemon juice, olive oil, and ZAYTOUN PALESTINIAN ZA’ATAR, then griddled, and baked the same as the aubergine.

I’m pretty sure this meal had more garlic per head than anything I’ve prepared before (at least 5 or 6 bulbs went into this meal), so i’m pretty sure we’re safe from vampires for the mean time.

 

 

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Early harvests.

I love this time of year – it’s when the foraging begins!

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…I say foraging, but we actually cultivate both wild garlic and nettles in our back garden!

Wild garlic has such a short season you have to make the most of it while it’s still here – so we’re having wild garlic in EVERYTHING just now. Nettles – they’re best when they’re still young and tender.

So these got picked, washed and sauteed with some sliced fennel bulbs. I baked some asparagus in olive oil, lemon juice and black pepper. Made some almond and cashew riccotta (blitzed them up with some olive oil, lemon juice and salt – delicious!), stuffed some large mushrooms with them, topped off with some basil pesto, and served with some seeded malthouse sourdough.

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It was a bit tasty.