- Pickled sardines rillettes

So, my client was organizing an event at hers and asked me if I could make pickled sardines. 
She had different infused vodka and as we know, in Russia they eat pickled fish while drinking vodka that’s why I went for that dish. 

I love sardines, in a can, fresh, with vinegar as my mum does, raw marinated, grilled that you eat with your hands straight out of the barbecue…

I bought some at my fishmonger who didn’t empty and fillet them (obviously not, too small) so I did it myself. Took off the scales with a little knife, emptied and washed them. And then, pickle them. The cleaning and filleting may sound difficult but it’s not.
There are different ways of making filets of sardines, the easiest way is with scissors. Cut the head, the fins, open the belly with your scissors all the way through and with your thumb, all at once, take off the insides. Then, belly on the chopping board, press your fingers slightly throughout the spine to unstick the spine from the meat, turn your sardine over and you should be able to separate the spine and bones from the flesh easily, holding it by the tail and pulling slowly. 
Wash your fillets keep them aside on an absorbant paper. 

The sardines can be eaten as it is, pickled or you can make a rillettes/pâté. If you want to make a pâté, you should count 1 sardine per person, it’s more than enough knowing that you will serve them on toast or crackers. If you eat the pâté with a spoon, that’s another story, you will need more sardines. :)
The good news is that sardines are cheap. 

 

Sardines rillettes

serves 12

Ingredients :

  • 12 sardines 
  • 12 tbsp. white wine vinegar
  • 3⁄4 cup olive oil
  • 1⁄3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced


Method
:

In a bowl, whisk the oil, vinegar, lemon juice and garlic. Pour the marinade onto the sardines placed on a baking tray. Cover with a film and put in the fridge for a few hours, ideally overnight. Turn the fish occasionally if you can.

When ready, eating the sardines just like that on bread with butter is a treat, if you would like to make the rillettes, once the sardines are cooked with the marinade, put everything except the oil in a blender. Mix for a few minutes, if it’s too dry and you can’t obtain a paste, add some of the oil from the marinade till obtaining a spreadable paste. 

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- Vegan burgers after an overindulgence of meat at the farm

I am at my office, a café that I really like around the corner of my  house. 

After 2 intense weeks with my mum who was visitng and as always a lot of drinking and overdose of meat, I am going green for a few days/weeks.

Before giving you the recipe of my vegan burgers I wanted to let you know a bit more about my last week-end at the farm. 
We spent 2 days in the country side or to be more specific, in the forest, in the middle of nowhere, where we had a tight schedule.

Go horse riding, wine tasting, lunch, feeding the lamb, eat massive breakfast, milk a cow… amongst other things.

We managed to do it all without having the feeling of rushing.  

If you are in California and want to go rustic, wild and raw, here is the link of the farm :

http://willowcreeknatural.com/

For sure it’s rustic, but you will have the great pleasure of eating fresh eggs, homemade sausages from the pork who happily ran in the field, fresh strawberries to go with your crêpes, go for a nice meal and a wine tasting in the cute and only one main street small town of Murphys and drink a glass of wine by the campfire at night.

Because of that overindulgence of meat, I made some burgers… vegan… and delicious. 

 

Vegan and gluten free burger

Serves 2

Ingredients :

  • 1 small can of beans (439g/15 oz)
  • 1 cup of brown rice
  • 2 tsp of ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp of bread crumb
  • 1/4 onion
  • Salt, pepper
  • Vegetable oil

Method :

As simple as that, mix all ingredients except the rice in a food processor. 
When obtaining a paste, add the rice, form the burger with your hands and cook it for a few minutes on each sides with a bit of oil till golden brown.

Can be frozen (before the cooking part). 

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Bon appétit !

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- Ginger and turmeric confits, natural bonbons

I love ginger. 

I so love it that I have some every single day, first thing in the morning with my hot lemon juice. I grate it, also add some turmeric and then after that, I can start my day, have breakfast etc…

I researched about it trying to find out if I could find some grown in California. Yes, there are some very ambitious people who managed to grow some even though the climate here is not the best for that kind of harvest. Some even managed to grow some indoors !

The ginger produces custers of white flowers, the rhizome (stems found underground) are harvested when the annual stalk withers and immediately scraped and washed to prevent sprouting in order to allow the root to grow.

Mostly cultivated in China and India as the ginger likes humid climate very much. 

You can make your ginger confit in a few days. Boil and drain it a few times to get rid of the heat, then simmered a few times with sugar, made that way, religiously will give your ginger this wonderful golden, translucent color.

I couldn’t wait for that long, I wanted my ‘bonbons’ very quickly so this is great for impatient people like me. As I always have turmeric too, i tried with turmeric also, i love the result !
Confit in maple syrup s’il vous plait !

 

Ginger and turmeric confit in maple syrup

Ingredients :

  • 200g (7 oz) of ginger and turmeric washed in hot water, skin on
  • 100ml (3 oz)of maple syrup
  • 200ml (6 oz) of water


Method
:

Scratch roughly the skin of the turmeric with a knife and wash the ginger and turmeric with hot water. 
You can peel them if you want, I didn’t. 

Slice them very finely, put them in a sauce pan and cover with 100ml (3 oz) of water, bring to the boil and simmer for 30min. 
Drain them and once again, cover with 100ml (3oz) of water,bring to the boil and simmer for 30min. 
Drain and cover with the maple syrup, put the lid on and simmer very very slowly for 30min and uncovered for another 30min. 

While still warm, you can roll them in icing sugar for the look. 

To nibble without moderation

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