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What’s in Season? September

[FOOD] Spring is upon us! Get ready to make the September seasonal change knowing what’s in at the markets and what should be in your kitchen garden.

At the markets

The early-bird summer fruits of mangoes & nectarines are here -they are still quite tart but just seeing them lifts your spirits! But the summery vibe doesn’t stop there;  pineapples are sweetening up and there are berries berries everywhere.

 

The best flavour is way off but you can still get your mango fix from this early-bird produce.

The best flavour is way off but you can still get your mango fix from this early-bird produce.

Spring vegetables are a whole lotta green. Look forward to freshening up your recipes with artichokes, broad beans, asparagus, spring onions and peas.

Spring means green (and a lots of it!)

Spring means green (and a lots of it!)

At its best

Potatoes are slightly floury in texture, which makes them perfect for roasting – get that crispy skin and fluffy inside.

Best buy

Fat fennel bulbs are a bargain this week as well – perfect shaved with lemon juice & olive oil in a salad.

In the kitchen garden

Keep an eye out for the first of the asparagus spears pushing their way from the soil into the springtime air.  Picked straight from the garden, these sweet tender anti-inflammatoryy shoots always make there way into my mouth before the plate…a spear a day keeps the wrinkles away! Our lettuce & kale are going crazy and the peas are climbing vigorously.

It’s time to sow seeds of the cucumber family, so get those cucumbers, zucchinis and pumpkins in the ground and ready to grow! And if you have space, now is also the perfect time for melons….ours always self seed!

If you need a little inspiration for planting your Kitchen Garden!

If you need a little inspiration for planting your Kitchen Garden! Visit this C18th F&V garden at Chateau de la Bussiere! AMAZING!

 

smashed-peas

SMASHED GREEN PEA & POTATO CAKES – natural face-lifting food

[RECIPE]  serves 4 | 30 min wo to go

Need a foolproof recipe to provide a bit of variety to cooking repertoire that all the family & YOUR SKIN will love? These green pea and potato cake (or fritters if you prefer) are quick & easy, delicious & nutritious. Left over cold ones make great sandwich fillers.

BEAUTY BOOST 

PEAS are the latest way to get a nonsurgical facelift & leave your skin looking youthful and radiant!

They contain Vitamin C, Folic Acid (folate) and vitamin B6 – the hero’s of natural face- lifting food. The latter two nutrients help prevent the build up of homocysteine, a by-product of fat metabolism that can prevent collagen cross linking. We all know collegen keeps your skin strong, firm and toned. The vitamin C protects your skin’s structure from damage, as a powerful antioxidant it fights free radicals that like to damage collagen & elastin.   Other nutrients they contain support tone, tighten and beautify skin: they are a very good source Vitamin  K (minimises under eye darkness), manganese (activates vitamin C), dietary fibre & Thiamin (B1) and also contain protein, Vitamin A, Vitamin B1 and the minerals phosphorus, magnesium, copper, iron (energy metabolism), zinc (essential for immune system + cell renewal) and potassium (fluid balance).

POTATOES should NOT be scorned, this root vegetable is packed with nutrients that help your skin prevent damage – damage from inflammation which can cause your skin to be appear red and puffy. Potatoes contain the flavanoid antioxidants in levels that rival broccoli  spinach & brussel sprouts, vitamin C (about 1/4 of oranges), copper, B6, folic acid kukoamines – a rare compound found in one other food only – goji berries – and may have blood pressure lowering potential. Copper works with vitamin C to help make elastin – a component of the skin structure that keeps it looking strong smooth and youthful.

YOU’LL NEED

2-3 potatoes, peeled & cooked (equivalent of 300g) eg pontiac, dutch cream

2 cups of peas – defrosted (& drained if need be)

2 eggs

2 tblspn chopped mint & parsley

2 tblspn besan flour

S&P

TO MAKE..

Add peas to bowl and mash with potato masher til squashy, don’t puree.

Add potato and mash in making sure you leave chunky bits.

Add remaining ingredients, mash in.

Add a dash of olive or grape seed oil to a heavy fry pan  heat til ‘sizzle’ point.

Take soup spoon size dollops of pea mix and spoon into pan – flatten out til pikelet size. (be careful not to burn)

Flip when starting to firm up on the underneath and are golden brown, cook other side, remove and sit on paper towel til ready to serve.

To serve, add a wedge of lemon for squeezing over or a tomato relish on the side. Great with salad and or pice of fish or lamb cutlet.

TIPS & TRICKS

  • Cast iron fry pan preferred – no stainless steel as they stick.
  • Add garlic or ground cumin for extra flavour
  • Sweet potato (kumera) would substitute in well.
  • Mix it up, add some grated carrot or beetroot.
  • Besan is chick pea flour available from health food stores. It’s used a lot in vegetable pakoras. You could use what ever you have on hand – spelt, buckwheat, coconut and even sub in a little almond. 
  • Great cold, squashed into a sandwich with avocado and salad. (tho my kids rejected this version!)

KIDS?

Mine loved them hot out of the pan with a piece of fish and some munch and crunch. They scored it 10/10 but they know the fast track to my heart!

 smashed pea and potato fritters with colourful veg

smashed pea and potato fritters with colourful veg