Coriander Chutney is an eternal favourite: it goes well with many snacks, such as pakoras or onion bhajis. It is often used as a relish when making vegetable sandwiches in India. Serves 4 75g-100g coriander leaves, washed and coarsely chopped 2.5cm/1in piece fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped 2 green chillies, roughly chopped Juice of ½ lemon 1 tsp sugar 1 clove garlic, coarsely chopped ¼ tsp salt Put all of the ingredients into a blender and whiz to a thick paste. If it is too dry to process, add a tiny amount of water. Be careful when you open the lid because the strong pungent aroma of the chutney will hit you immediately and may make your eyes water. Store covered in the refrigerator in a non-metallic container for up to 4 days.
Serve as a first course or as a side vegetable with pork chops or lamb cutlets. The nice addition is the parsley to give it that extra flavour. Serves 4 20 flat black mushrooms, stalks removed 4 tbsp olive oil 2 small lemons, zest removed and chopped, juice squeezed salt and pepper 100g fresh breadcrumbs 1 bunch flat parsley, leaves only 100g butter, melted Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas Mark 6. Put the mushrooms in a roasting tin, gills uppermost, drizzle each mushroom with a little olive oil, pour over the lemon juice and season. Bake for 30 minutes until well cooked through. Meanwhile place the breadcrumbs in a food processor, then add the parsley, garlic and lemon rind. Process until well blended, the crumbs will turn a nice green colour. But don’t overwork the mixture, it might turn pasty. Carefully spoon some over each mushroom and then gently press in the mixture with your fingers. Spoon the butter evenly over each mushroom. Turn up the oven to 230C/450F/Gas Mark 8 and return the mushrooms to the top shelf of the oven. Bake for 10 minutes until the crumbs are starting to turn brown. If necessary finish them off under the grill. Serve immediately.
This is a quick way to eat oily fish. The pâté can be used as a sandwich filler or spread on some toast, You can make this pâté with smoked mackerel or even sardines. Serves 4 88g can boneless and skinless mackerel fillets, drained 40g butter, softened 1 tsp lemon juice 1/4 tsp black pepper A few sprigs of washed and chopped flat leaf parsley Purée the fish, butter, cheese, lemon juice and black pepper in a food processor until almost smooth, then tip in the parsley and blend for a few seconds more. Divide the mixture among four small ramekins or bowls and level the surface. Cover the pâté and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. Serve chilled.
Muhammara is a dip from Aleppo in Syria made from fresh or dried peppers, chilli peppers, breadcrumbs, olive oil and pomegranate molasses. the pomegranate molasses brings both tartness and sweetness to the relish. Muhammara is eaten as a dip with bread, as a spread for toast, and as a sauce for kebabs, grilled meats, and fish. Serves 6 3 red peppers or a jar of red peppers 50g fresh breadcrumbs ½ tbsp lemon juice 1 tbsp pomegranate molasses 1½ tsp ground cumin 1 tbsp dried chilli flakes 1 small garlic clove, peeled and crushed 50g walnuts, finely chopped by hand 2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra to finish If using fresh peppers, preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas Mark 6. Put the peppers on a tray and roast for 30-35 minutes, turning occasionally, until they are cooked and the skin is blackened. Put the peppers in a bowl, cover with cling-film and, once cool enough to handle, peel and discard the skin and seeds. Pat the peppers dry, and place in a mortar or a blender or food processor. Add the breadcrumbs, lemon juice, molasses, cumin, chilli and garlic. Work this with a pestle until well combined, but not so much that the peppers no longer have a noticeable texture. Stir through the walnuts and the olive oil. Add more pomegranate molasses and salt to taste the flavours will be quite intense and concentrated. Spoon the dip into a shallow bowl, using the back of a spoon to give it a wavy texture, and drizzle with a little olive oil. Serve at room temperature.