Saturday, November 14, 2009
I have had a hard month health wise, and when I have tried to get the next YamDaisy Menu together I have been stymied by the vagaries of Spring! We are so lucky with the good produce available in Springtime in Melbourne, but it seemed that all the menus I have called for ingredients that were not at their best, or that were wickedly expensive!
A reminder that these are menu's suitable for the YamDaisy Cafe see website http://home.vicnet.net.au/~yamdaisy/index.htm
The menu offers each days clients the choice of a soup, two main meals and a dessert. The food is local, seasonal and delicious.
In the end I have put the menus I have aside for the moment and come up with my own - after a good look around my favourite fruit and veg market. So here it is:
JOY'S SPRING MENU
SOUP: Lentil and Spinach Soup with Tomato Parmesan Bread (pictured)
MAIN 1: Chicken Drumsticks with Mashed Potato and Braised Lemony Asparagus
MAIN 2: Black-eyed Bean Curry, Cauliflower and Fennel in Aromatic Oil (pictured) with Basmati Rice
FRUIT DESSERT: Cherry Fruit Salad with a Ricotta Star
SOUP: The Spinach and Lentil Soup is a French classic, very tasty and light. The Tomato Parmesan Bread is made with a richer dough, rolled out and sprinkled with a mixture of finely chopped sun dried tomatoes, chives and parmesan cheese. It is then rolled up and baked and it tastes SO good!
MAIN 1: I love these chicken drumsticks, they are marinated in a mix of yoghurt with some spices and a bit of maple surup and then roasted to tasty gorgeousness. They taste good cold as well.
The mashed potato is going to be one of the YamDaisy touchstones given what a favourite food it is! Soft and fluffy and perfectly seasoned it makes a bed on the plate and catches all those tasty drips from its accompaniments!
It is asparagus season here (so long as the nasty heat hasn't wiped it out!) and braising the asparagus with a bit of olive oil, butter, lemon zest and juice, gives it its own sauce and completes the dish.
MAIN 2: Bean Curry is a comfort food staple, and the Cauliflower and Fennel in Aromatic Oil is so easy and wonderful. Since we are in the middle of the heat wave mentioned above, it was a good one for me to make as it goes well in the Microwave - but it could cook in the oven or on top of a gentle heat! It is delicious and keeps well. Here is how I did it:
Cauliflower and Fennel in Aromatic Oil from Julie Sahni
Make a mix of
1 tbsp finely grated ginger
2 tbsp ground coriander
1 1/2 tbsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp cayenne
Heat 4 tbsp mustard or vegetable oil
Fry the spices and
1 cup of chopped spring onions (scallions) for a minute
1 small cauliflower in florets
1 1/2 cups sliced fennel bulb
Mix til everything is coated with the oil
Cook until vegetables are done (6 minutes in my microwave)
Serve garnished with coriander, fennel greens and/or mint.
FRUIT DESSERT: It is the end of Spring and just about cherry season Woohoo! So the fruit salad can have a nice proprtion of cherries, along with the other fruits that are showing their faces here. The ricotta stars are made by mixing the ricotta with an egg and a little bit of sweetening, and then baked in a tray until set, Star cookie cutters cut out the shapes to go with each dessert. A spoon of syrup flavoured with vanilla can go over the top.
What would you choose from this menu? Would you eat there, or have take away?