Cheesy Broccoli & Potato Gratin

A recipe for a rainy day. We complain about the rain, but really we are so lucky to get lots of rainy days to water our crops. Our brilliant broccoli is really thriving in this perfect mix of heat and rain, why not add some extras to your order for the freezer? This is a great meal in its own right, but is also a satisfying side to a Sunday roast. What would you pair it with?

Liz x

Ingredients

  • potatoes – approx 10
  • milk (any milk you like works, I use oat) – approx 500ml
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 heads of broccoli
  • 2 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • grated cheese – approx 3 handfuls

Method

  1. Turn your oven to 200C and find a large, oven and hob safe pot with a lid.
  2. Thinly slice the potatoes using a mandolin, machine or very sharp knife. Add them to the pot and pour in the milk. You want to add just enough so that you can see the milk, but don’t cover the potatoes or you will end up with a sloppy gratin.
  3. Stir in the mustard and nutmeg, then season with salt and pepper. Simmer the potatoes with the seasoned milk until they are just soft. Put the lid on the pan but stir often to ensure the potatoes are not sticking to the bottom of the pan. The potatoes will release starch into the milk and thicken it in a sort of béchamel.
  4. Meanwhile separate the stalk from the broccoli and trim as little as possible off the root end. Thinly slice the broccoli stalk and put to one side, then cut the tops into florets.
  5. When the potatoes are cooked, stir through the broccoli stalk slices and taste the sauce for seasoning. Adjust as needed with more salt or pepper.
  6. Top the gratin with the florets, drizzle with oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper, put the lid on and place the pot in the oven to bake for 20 minutes or so.
  7. When the broccoli is tender, remove the lid, sprinkle with cheese and pop the pot back in the oven again to melt the cheese and brown the top. Serve in big scoops and enjoy!

Broccoli & Sesame Fritters

Our bumper crop of beautiful broccoli is so tasty. Of course we mostly eat it steamed as a side dish, but there are countless ways to eat broccoli. What are your favourite recipes? Here’s our currant obsession, fritters studded with lots of nutty sesame seeds, savoury seaweed and scallions. Delicious dunked in sweet chilli sauce. Give them a try and let us know what you think. You can add all the specialist ingredients (chickpea flour, seaweed flakes, sesame seeds, sweet chilli sauce…) to your next order. Our range of groceries is always growing. We always source organic, and plastic free and local where possible.

Liz x

Ingredients (makes 14 small fritters)

  • 1 mug of chickpea flour
  • 1 mug of warm water
  • 1 tsp each: garlic granules, ground ginger, chilli flakes, salt
  • 1/2 a broccoli, finely chopped
  • 1 scallion, chopped
  • 6 tbsp sesame seeds
  • a handful of dried seaweed flakes
  • neutral oil for frying
  • sweet chilli dipping sauce to serve

Method

  1. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the chickpea flour, water, garlic, ginger, chilli and salt.
  2. Now finely chop the broccoli and scallion and add to the bowl along with the sesame seeds and seaweed flakes. Stir well to evenly distribute the ingredients through the batter.
  3. Heat a heavy bottomed pan with a generous slick of oil to medium-high, then fry the fritters. Space out spoons of the batter in the pan, fry until golden and crispy, then carefully flip and fry the other side. Keep your eye on the temperature of the oil, make sure it’s not so hot that the fritters burn on the outside and are raw in the middle, but not so cold so they soak up a lot of oil and stay soggy.
  4. Drain the fritters and keep frying in batches until the mixture is all used up. Serve with a sweet chilli dipping sauce and enjoy!

One Pot Broccoli, Lemon & Garlic Pasta

One pot pasta dishes are our favourites! Not just because of less washing up, but also because when you create a sauce in the pasta’s starchy cooking water, it is so luscious, silky and rich.

We have loads of amazing broccoli here on the farm now, we love it so much that we use half a head per person in this recipe (based on the traditional Italian broccoli orecchiette). The broccoli is deliberately cooked for longer than we would usually cook it, until it collapses into the sauce. We use a big dollop of miso (in place of anchovies) for complex depth of flavour and loads of gorgeous garlic and lemon to make this simple dish sing. Give this recipe a try for your next pasta night.

Liz x

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (plus extra for drizzling on the bowls)
  • 6 fat garlic cloves, peeled & finely chopped
  • 2 heads of broccoli, finely chopped – stalks included
  • 1 tbsp miso paste
  • the zest and 1/2 the juice of a lemon
  • 400g pasta (any small shape you prefer)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • chilli flakes and grated cheese to serve

Method

  1. In a large, heavy bottomed pot, sauté the garlic and finely chopped broccoli stalks in the oil until very fragrant and starting to soften – about 5 minutes or so.
  2. Season with salt, pepper, miso and lemon zest and then add the dried pasta and broccoli florets.
  3. Just cover with water, give the pasta a stir and put the lid on the pot to help the water come quickly to a boil.
  4. Once boiling, remove the lid and stir to ensure no pasta is sticking to the bottom. Cook until the pasta is soft. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed with more salt and pepper and the lemon juice.
  5. Let the pasta sit off the heat and rest a few minutes before serving. This will allow the sauce to thicken into the perfect texture. Serve with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, a sprinkle of cheese and chilli flakes. Enjoy!

Teriyaki Aubergine Rice bowl

We have some new organic, Asian sauces on our list now to make your meals even easier (and more delicious!) We are currently obsessed with teriyaki. It is sweet and salty and so full of flavour. Use it to marinade veggies or tofu and bake or stir fry. Here’s how I made this delicious week-night supper.

Liz x

Ingredients (serves 2)

Method

  1. Turn your oven to 200C and find a small baking dish.
  2. Get your brown rice on to cook (brown rice takes longer than white so if you are using white rice, start it after the aubergine is in the oven). Rinse the cup of rice through a fine sieve then add it to a small pot. Add 2 small cups of water, put the lid on the pot and turn it onto the highest setting. As soon as it comes to a boil, turn it to the lowest setting and leave the lid on. Let the rice simmer, it should absorb all the water in around 30 minutes or so and be perfectly cooked through. Keep an eye on it.
  3. Cut the aubergine in half, lengthways, then score the flat surface deeply with a small, sharp knife. Cut diagonal lines into the white, spongey flesh and then criss-cross the other direction. Careful not to cut too deeply.
  4. Spoon over the teriyaki sauce and, using the back of the spoon, rub it into the cuts to effectively marinade the aubergine. Place the aubergine, cut sides up, into the baking dish then bake until soft – this usually takes around 20-30 minutes depending on the size of your aubergine.
  5. Meanwhile stir-fry the broccoli and tofu together with the sesame oil and soy sauce/tamari.
  6. Then plate up, divide the rice, stir fry and baked aubergine between two bowls. Top with sesame seeds, chilli flakes and kimchi as you like. I also added shredded nori seaweed and an extra drizzle of soy sauce to my bowl. Enjoy!

Fluffy Broccoli ‘Omelette’

Another recipe inspired by Ukrainian chef Olia Hercules, is this delicious, veg-forward breakfast. I LOVE having lots of vegetables for breakfast. Sautéed mushrooms, kale, and tomatoes on toast is probably my favourite. So when I re-visited ‘Summer Kitchens’, one of Olia’s brilliant books, and saw this puffed broccoli omelette I knew I had to make a plant based twist.

We have just added chickpea flour to our grocery section. It’s one of my favourite pantry ingredients, so useful for making fritters, socca bread, bhajis, vegan tortillas or quiches and egg free omelettes. To make it puffy, I just used bread soda activated with some apple cider vinegar. The results were delicious and I’ll be recreating this veggie breakfast over and over again using different seasonal vegetables. Of course it would be wonderful with our purple sprouting broccoli and I’m going to use leeks next time for sure! Don’t forget to tag us in your re-creations, we love to see the spin you put on our recipes.

Liz x

Ingredients (serves 2)

  • 1/2 mug of gram flour
  • 1/2 mug of water
  • 1 tsp vinegar
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • sliced broccoli to cover frying pan
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Method

  1. Start with the batter. The longer the chickpea flour has to re-hydrate, the better texture – you could even make the batter the night before and leave it covered overnight at room temperature to lightly ferment. Whisk together the flour, water, vinegar, salt and pepper. Wait to add the baking soda just before frying.
  2. In a frying pan which has a lid, fry the broccoli with the olive oil, salt and pepper until just starting to take on some colour. Then spread the broccoli evenly over the base of the pan and turn the heat down to medium.
  3. Add the baking soda to the chickpea flour batter and whisk it in – the batter should immediately start to fluff up. Quickly pour it over the broccoli and put the lid on the frying pan. This will ensure a crispy bottom and a fluffy, steamed top to your omelette.
  4. After 3-5 minutes or so, the batter should be cooked through. You can test it by touching the top of the omelette, your finger should come off dry without batter.
  5. Slice it into wedges and serve warm. It’s delicious with some juicy sliced tomatoes alongside too.

Bang Bang Broccoli & Black Beans

We are harvesting so much broccoli from our fields at the moment! Expect lots in your set boxes or add some to the ‘build your own’ box for a special reduced price. Broccoli is brilliant! Broccoli is a good source of fibre and protein, and contains iron, potassium, calcium, selenium and magnesium as well as the vitamins A, C, E, K and a good array of B vitamins including folic acid. A real Irish super-food! I’ll be steaming some batches to put in boxes in the freezer to add to loads of different meals. Here’s one of our favourite family meals that uses a lot of broccoli.

Bang bang chicken is a traditional Sichuan dish of poached chicken which is then ‘banged’ to shred it and dressed in a spicy sauce. It’s a refreshing dish served with julienned cucumber. This is my plant-based nod to that classic. Definitely not authentic, but delicious none-the-less. It’s really simple. Nutritious broccoli and black beans are drenched in a spicy sauce, sprinkled with sesame seeds and then roasted. You can serve it with rice or noodles, or it’s delicious as a warm salad with spiralized courgette.

Liz x

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • 2 heads of broccoli
  • 2 tins of black beans
  • 4 tbsp maple syrup
  • 4 tbsp lime juice (or vinegar)
  • 4 tbsp vegetable or toasted sesame oil
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce (or tamari if you need gluten free)
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • a big thumb of ginger
  • fresh red chillies to taste
  • 6 tbsp sesame seeds
  • scallions, fresh coriander and extra chillies to serve
  • rice or noodles to serve

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 200C and find a large roasting tray, or two trays if you don’t have a very large one. You want to be able to spread the ingredients into a single layer.
  2. Trim as little as possible off the stalks of the broccoli. Just a sliver off the end is usually enough – those bits can go in the compost bin. Then cut the whole stalk away from the florets, slice it in half lengthways and then slice each half into long, thin strips. Put them in the roasting dish. Then cut the heads of the broccoli into bites sized florets and add them to the roasting tray too.
  3. Drain the tins of black beans and add them to the tray. Then make the dressing.
  4. Mix the soy sauce, oil, lime juice/vinegar and maple syrup in a bowl. Finely dice the chilli, garlic and ginger and add them to the bowl. Mix well and then pour the dressing over the broccoli and black beans.
  5. Use your hands to mix the sauce into the broccoli and beans, then spread the ingredients out into a single layer. Sprinkle with the sesame seeds and put the tray into the oven to roast for just 20 minutes or until the broccoli is tender.
  6. Meanwhile cook your rice or noodles and prepare the toppings. Slice scallions, coriander and extra red chillies.
  7. Serve in bowls and enjoy hot or cold. We like to make an extra batch of the dressing with toasted sesame oil but without the raw garlic and ginger to drizzle over the finished dish too to make it extra juicy and spicy.

Potatoes & Peas with Mint Salsa Verde

How about a potato salad with fresher flavours? A tangy, herby salsa verde made with mint and capers pairs perfectly with peas and buttery new potatoes. If you don’t have peas in the freezer, switch them with any fresh greens you like. We particularly love this salad with thinly sliced raw courgette in place of the peas or chopped and steamed French beans or broccoli. Anyway you make it, it’s a brilliant bowl to bring along to a BBQ.

Liz x

Ingredients

  • 12 new potatoes
  • 150g cooked peas (or this is lovely with thinly sliced raw courgette or chopped and steamed French beans or broccoli too!)
  • 25g fresh mint leaves
  • 3 tbsp capers
  • 1 garlic clove
  • the juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Method

  1. Halve and boil the new potatoes until tender, then drain and cool while you make the salsa verde.
  2. Put the mint, garlic, capers, lemon juice and olive oil into a blender.
  3. Blend into a loose sauce then taste – add more lemon, olive oil or capers to taste. You shouldn’t need to add salt, the capers are plenty salty enough.
  4. Put the cooked and cooled potatoes into a bowl with the peas (or broccoli, French beans or courgette slices) and drizzle over half the salsa verde and toss to combine.
  5. Add more salsa verde or keep left overs in a jar in the fridge and use within a week. It’s great over salads & roasted vegetables, spread into a wrap or stirred through a summery soup or stew.