Tagged: peas

Smoked Sardines with Risini and a Parsley & Oregano Pesto

Ok – “What the hell is Risini?” I hear you ask. [Also sometimes called ‘Orzo’ – just in case you come across it and think we’ve been dishing out duff info!]

Well, it’s a rice shaped pasta. I saw it in Lidl (where else!) and just had to get a pack – with no idea what to do with it at the time. So it has been sat in my cupboard for over a month now.

I got a bag of smoked sardine fillets off the reduction bit at my Tesco (the only time I ever shop there).

And tonight came the inevitable question – “What are we having for tea?”

Fish, I said. So I prepped some pollock and breadcrumbed it for the kids and got the sardines out for me and the missus.

As my herb patch is a verdant jungle due to the crap summer we are having, I decided to make a pesto, but without the basil or pine nuts.  So I went to the patch and got a good handful of parsley and about half as much of the oregano.

I placed this in my blender along with a good glug of olive oil, half a handful of Peccorino cheese and the juice of half a lemon and blitzed it. It was a bit stiff at first so I added a little more oil till it was smooth.

I put enough risini for 2 into a pan of boiling salted water for about 5-6 minutes before adding a handful of peas. 

I then pan fried the sardine fillets skin side down in a hot frying pan till the skin went crispy. [You don’t get a truly crispy skin with sardines but it was enough to take the sliminess off it.]

I drained the risini and peas and then mixed in the pesto. Now we’re cooking!

Put the risini & pesto mix in a pasta dish and I added a few chopped tomatoes then laid the fish on top with a few shavings of parmezan. The whole thing took less than half an hour to make and I must say it was well appreciated by Carol, and by me.

I can honestly say that my fish intake has probably quadrupled over the last few years, and with recipes like this I can only imagine eating more.

Mugsie.



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Salmon & Scallops with Pecorino and Lemon Risotto and Pea Purée

“What to do for tea tonight?” That was going round my head all afternoon. I didn’t have anything in specifically and I had no inspiration.

Then a rummage through my freezer unearthed the last of the Scallops my friend brought round and also the last of the Salmon side I had portioned up a few months back.

Then it hit me.

Last week I had bought some Arborio rice from Lidl. This is not a line they usually do. And also in the same shopping trip, I had bought some Pecorino cheese. Pecorino is the sheep’s version of Parmesan. I had a portion of frozen peas left and some lemons in the fridge. “It’s all there.” I thought.

Tea sorted!

I defrosted the Scallops and a large amount of liquid came off them so as not to waste anything this was the first liquid added to the rice.

To make a Risotto, first gently fry some finely chopped onion or shallot and a clove of garlic. Then fry the rice as well till it goes slightly translucent, then you can start adding your liquid. As I said the scallop juice went in first, followed by my home-made chicken stock.

Keep adding the stock and keep stirring – it releases the starch which makes your risotto creamy. Near the end of the cooking add a good handful of the cheese and the juice of a Lemon.

The Lemon and Pecorino

Then I put my salmon into a frying pan and, as before, I fried the skin side till it was nice and crispy and then turned it over.

When I turned the salmon over , I also put the Scallops in to fry as well.

While this was cooking, I made the pea purée.

I took my peas and microwaved them in some water till cooked. I then drained the water off and blitzed the peas with a knob of butter and some of my stock till smooth.

There you go, all your bits are made and ready to serve. All you need is a twist of black pepper and you’re away.

This cries out “Drink white wine with me!” which the missus did. I had a glass of Shiraz, which I thought was also a good partner, as the risotto had a pungency that could match the wine.

It was bloody fantastic. I do like that risotto/fish combination and I will be doing it again for sure.

Mugsie



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