Broccoli in Béchamel Sauce [Serves 4]


I’ve always liked my broccoli lightly sautéd with cheese after having them boiled or completely doused in oyster sauce *yum yum*. In fact, I like it cooked in any method as long as it’s flavored, preferably heavily. Broccoli is just too bland a vegetable choice to be eaten plain! Another reason to why I love this recipe is simply the sauce. Lasagne has always been my addiction for as long as I can remember and it’s only after I started cooking when I learnt the secret lies in the layers of Béchamel sauce.

 

Ingredients

Broccoli Florets

1 Small Onion, chopped

1 Small Carrot, chopped

1 Celery Stick, chopped

1 Bouquet Garni

6 Black Peppercorns

Pinch of Grated Nutmeg / Blade of Mace

300ml Milk

2 Tbsp Butter

2 Tbsp Plain Flour

30ml Single (Light) Cream

Salt

Ground Black Pepper

 

Cooking Instructions

1. Steam the broccoli florets and set aside.

2. Put the chopped onion, carrot, and celery in a pan with the bouquet garni, black peppercorns, nutmeg /mace and milk. Bring it to a boil and remove from heat. Set it aside.

3. Melt the butter in a pan over gentle heat and remove it from the heat when all the butter has melted. Stir the flour into the melted butter and return to the heat, cooking for 1-2min, stirring continuously to make a roux.

4. Reheat the flavored milk until almost boiling and strain it into a jug, pressing the vegetables with a spoon to extract their juices.

5. Off the heat, gradually add the flavord milk into the roux, stirring continuously until smooth and return it to the heat till it boils.

6. Cook gently until the sauce thickens, stiring continuously.

7. Simmer the sauce gently for 3-4min and remove from heat.

8. Season the sauce to taste with salt and ground black pepper; stir in the cream.

9 Pour the sauce over steamed broccoli florets and serve.

Fusilli with Blue Cheese & Walnut Sauce [Serves 4]


This is a very quick but indulgently creamy sauce. The blue cheese melts easily with cream to make a simple sauce for a delicious lunch or supper.

Ingredients

12oz Fusilli, cooked and set aside

3½ Tbsp Butter

1.7oz White Button Mushroom, sliced

5.3oz Gorgonzola Cheese, crumbled

10 Tbsp Sour Cream

6 Tsp Pecorino Cheese, grated

1.7oz Walnuts, chopped

Salt

Ground Black Pepper

Cooking Instructions

1. Melt butter and cook mushroom gently for 3-5min, until lightly browned.

2. Crumble gorgonzola into a bowl and add sour cream.

3. Season.

4. Mix thoroughly until combined.

5. Stir cheese mixture into mushroom mixture.

6. Cook gently until melted.

7. Stir in pecorino and walnuts.

8. Toss pasta in the sauce.

 

Spinach Fettuccine with Rich Vegetable Sauce [Serves 4]


For a full tomato flavor and rich red color, fresh Italian plum tomatoes are an excellent choice if they are available. This makes a delightful topping for plain-cooked fresh pasta.

Ingredients

Spinach Fettuccine, cooked and set aside.

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

1 Onion, chopped

2 Garlic Cloves, crushed

1 Carrot, chopped

1 Celery, chopped

6 Plum Tomatoes, peeled and chopped

⅔ Cup Red Wine

⅔ Cup Vegetable Stock

1 Bouquet Garni

1 Tsp Sugar

1 Tbsp Tomato Paste

Salt

Ground Black Pepper

Cooking Instructions

1. Heat oil in pan.

2. Sauté onion and garlic until soft and golden.

3. Add carrot and celery.

4. Saute until all vegetables are golden.

5. Stir in tomatoes, wine, vegetable stock, and bouquet garni.

6. Season with salt and pepper.

7. Bring to a boil.

8. Cover and simmer 45min.

9. Remove bouquet garni and add sugar and tomato paste.

10. Stir with cooked pasta.

Asparagus with Mousseline Sauce [Serves 4]


A truly luscious sauce, that is subtly flavored, rich and creamy.

Ingredients – Asparagus

2lb Asparagus, trimmed

Salt

Cooking Instructions – Asparagus

1. Bring salted water to a boil.

2. Cook asparagus for 3min.

3. Drain and refresh in ice water.

4. Chill until needed.

Ingredients – Mousseline Sauce

2 Egg Yolks

1 Tbsp Lemon Juice

6 Tbsp Butter, softened

90ml Double (Heavy) Cream

Extra Lemon Juice

Salt

Ground Black Pepper

Cooking Instructions – Mousseline Sauce

1. Whisk egg yolks and lemon juice in a bowl over simmering water / double boiler, until thick and fluffy.

2. Whisk in butter a little at a time, allowing each piece to melt before adding the next piece.

3. Whisk until butter is completely absorbed with consistency of mayonnaise.

4. Remove from heat.

5. Whisk cream until stiff peaks in separate bowl.

6. Fold whipped cream into sauce.

7. Season to taste with extra lemon juice, salt, and black pepper.

Pasta with Olive Oil, Tomato & Herb Sauce [Serves 4]


This aromatic sauce is served warm, rather than hot. It tastes so great you’ll want to provide plenty of good bread or boiled new potatoes to mop up any sauce remaining on the plate. It is essential to the flavor of this sauce that you use the best quality olive oil.

Ingredients

225g Tomatoes, peeled, seeded; diced

1 Tbsp Shallot, finely chopped

2 Garlic Cloves, finely sliced

½ Cup Olive Oil

2 Tbsp Cold Water

1 Tbsp Lemon Juice

Caster Sugar, superfine

1 Tbsp Chervil, chopped

1 Tbsp Chives, chopped

2 Tbsp Basil Leaves, torn

Salt

Ground Black Pepper

12oz Pasta Shells, cooked

Cooking Instructions

1. Infuse shallot and garlic in olive oil over gentle heat.

2. Warm through, but not fry/cook.

3. Whisk in cold water and lemon juice.

4. Remove from heat.

5. Stir in tomatoes.

6. Season with salt, black pepper, and sugar.

7. Whisk in chopped chervil and chives.

8. Leave to stand 10-15min.

9. Reheat gently to warm through.

10. Stir in basil.

11. Add cooked pasta and toss well.