Summer spice... recipes from Green Saffron founder Arun Kapil
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
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
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
1 cup high quality Basmati rice
3 cups water
½ tsp turmeric
3 medium brown onions, thinly sliced
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.
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
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:
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:
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
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.