Friday 21 June 2019

Summer spice... recipes from Green Saffron founder Arun Kapil


Cali-Mex cool, Shrimp and seabas ceviche tostados, baja 'boom sauce, chilli and coriander
Cali-Mex cool, Shrimp and seabas ceviche tostados, baja 'boom sauce, chilli and coriander
Mujadara fragrant rice & lentil salad
Gooey meringue, blistered spiced blackcurrants, lemon kulfi

Flavoursome options from Cork-based Arun Kapil who is a food entrepreneur, spice expert and founder of the Green Saffron range of sauces and spice mixes

Cali-Mex cool, Shrimp & seabass ceviche tostados, baja 'boom' sauce, chilli & coriander

Serves 4 


Spice: ¼ tsp Szechuan pepper, ground; few gratings of nutmeg

3 limes, juiced

½ an orange, juiced

16 fat, big prawns, raw, peeled, de-veined, sliced into approx 25mm dice

4 sea bass fillets, skin removed, sliced into approx 25mm dice

8 small tortilla flatbreads, 10cm diameter, fried in oil to a crisp texture and a nutty colour

For the baja sauce: 1 tbsp grapeseed oil

2 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped

1 lime, boiled for 15 mins

2 roasted red peppers (the jarred peppers are perfect for this)

1 fat green finger chilli

2 tbsp tomato ketchup

Spices: ½ tsp ground cumin; 1 tsp ground black pepper

200g best quality mayonnaise

For the garnish: 2 ripe avocados, peeled, thinly sliced

3 green chillies, sliced thinly

Coriander leaves

1 fresh ripe mango, diced

1 red onion, peeled, sliced into thin wedges through the poles


Make the sauce by popping all the ingredients except the mayo into a food processor and blitz to a smooth paste.

Fold the mayonnaise through, pop the sauce into a bowl, cover and set aside in the fridge.

Mix the spices with the lime and orange juice, coat the diced prawns and fish. Leave aside for 10 minutes, then drain reserving the juices, the 'leche de tigre'.

Arrange the garnishes on a large charger or individual plates, the diced, drained fish and prawns on another plate, the leche de tigre in a couple of shot glasses and take to table.

Place the baja sauce and fried tortilla to one side and let everyone build their own tostados. Enjoy!


Mujadara fragrant rice & lentil salad

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Mujadara fragrant rice & lentil salad

Serves 4


1 cup high quality Basmati rice

3 cups water

½ tsp turmeric

3 medium brown onions, thinly sliced

30g butter

3 tbsp rapeseed oil

1 sachet Green Saffron Korma spice blend

2 medium carrots, peeled, then diced 20mm

2 sticks celery, peeled, then diced 20mm

1 small head of fennel, trimmed, fronds retained, diced 20mm

1 cup brown lentils, cooked in two cups water, drained and set aside

1 aubergine sliced through the poles into 20mm thick ‘steaks’

4 tbsp Greek yoghurt

Fresh mint leaves

For the elderflower pickle:

15 elderflower heads, shaken free of insects

200ml white wine vinegar

50g golden caster sugar

Small pinch sea salt

12 cubeb or black peppercorns


To make the pickle, pop all the pickle ingredients into a jam jar, screw the lid on tightly, place in a pan of gently boiling water, leave to simmer for 8 minutes, then remove and set aside.

Cook the rice in the water with the turmeric, and set aside.

In a large thick bottomed sauté pan, gently fry the onion slices in the butter and 1 tbsp oil until nicely caramelised, about 15 minutes, then remove half the onions and set aside. Leave the remaining onions in the pan.

Add another tbsp of oil and the Green Saffron spice blend. Place on a medium heat and gently fry for a minute, then add the diced carrot, celery and fennel. Stir to combine and cook for 5 minutes

Add the cooked lentils, stir through, then add the cooked rice and gently fold through. Set aside and keep warm.

Rub the aubergine slices with the remaining oil, then griddle, grill or BBQ both sides until just collapsed and nicely charred, about 8 to 10 minutes. Set aside.

To Serve

On warmed plates, place a slice of aubergine, spoon over the rice lentil mix, top with some cooked onions, a scattering of fennel fronds and mint, with a dollop of yoghurt to the side. Take to table with the pickle in a small bowl.


Gooey meringue, blistered spiced blackcurrants, lemon kulfi

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Gooey meringue, blistered spiced blackcurrants, lemon kulfi

Serves 4 


For the lemon kulfi:

2 unwaxed lemons, boiled for 20 mins, deseeded, then blitzed to a smooth paste texture and set aside to fully cool down

½ tsp vanilla paste

1 heaped tsp fresh ginger, grated

250ml fresh cream

400g condensed milk

1 large egg white, gently whipped to a light foam

For the blistered spiced blackcurrants:

120g water

80g golden caster sugar

Spices: 5 green cardamom pods, crushed; 5 cloves; 10 black peppercorns

450g blackcurrants, fresh or frozen

For the meringue:

4 large eggs, whites only

200g white caster sugar

For the ginger syrup:

80ml water

250g golden caster sugar

Spices: ½  whole nutmeg, crushed; 1 tsp cumin seeds

50g fresh ginger, chopped fine

2 sprigs fresh mint

4 sprigs fresh basil

To garnish:

Fresh mint leaves, torn


To make the kulfi, using an electric whisk, mix all the ingredients, except the egg white, to a smooth mousse texture. Fold through the egg white. Decant into a bowl or re-useable plastic container, cover and pop into a freezer for at least 5 hours or overnight to set.

To make the spiced blackcurrants, in a saucepan, heat up the water, sugar and spices. Once the sugar has dissolved, turn off the heat and set aside for 15 minutes, then strain the mixture through a sieve. Return the spiced sugar syrup to the saucepan, bring up to a gentle bubble, then add the blackcurrants. Once the currants release their juices, set aside. These will keep in the fridge for three or four days in a sealed container.

To make the meringue, preheat oven to  130˚C/gas mark 1. In a food mixer, decant the egg whites into the bowl, then begin to whisk on a medium speed, adding tablespoons of sugar at a time. Once incorporated, continue to whisk for another nine minutes. Spoon four even-sized dollops on to a wax paper covered baking sheet and pop into the oven for 1 hour. Then, turn off the oven and leave them in there until the oven has cooled down, about an hour to an hour-and-a-half.

To make the ginger syrup, heat up the water, sugar, spices, ginger and herbs in a saucepan. Once the sugar has dissolved, turn off the heat, set aside for 15 minutes, then strain through a sieve. Set aside.

To assemble, pop a meringue on to a plate, add 1 or 2 scoops of the kulfi, pour over a couple of tbsp of the blackcurrants, scatter with freshly torn mint leaves. Repeat for the other three servings, pour the ginger syrup into a small jug and take to table.

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