Soy, ginger and red chilli salmon, with buttered new potatoes and leafy salad

One of the things I love the most about winter is the food. Rich, comforting stews brimming with tender chunks of meat, steaming cups of cocoa and spicy, festive gingerbread. Yet, occasionally it’s a good idea to go for something a little fresher and a tad lighter to stop us turning into dumplings! Last night was one of those times, so we decided to go for some pan fried salmon with some fresh, crunchy veg to remind us of warmer times.

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Ingredients

Serves two

2 tbsp dark soy sauce
2 x 150g salmon fillets
5 tbsp runny honey
7g root ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 small clove of garlic, finely chopped
1/2 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
Enough new potatoes for two (I tend to do 3 small potatoes each but I’m sure Steve could eat more!)
Leafy salad with any extras you choose (I like to go for olives)
Dressing for the salad: 3 tbsp Olive oil, 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar, 1 tsp of wholegrain mustard, 1 tsp honey

A few shavings of butter

Method

Place the potatoes in a pan of lightly salted boiling water, cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until tender.

For the salmon, melt a bit of butter in a griddle pan, then add the salmon, skin side down first. Once crispy, turn it over to cook the other side. This should take around 15 minutes in total.

Whilst the potatoes and salmon are cooking, mix together the soy sauce, ginger, garlic, honey and chilli and heat gently in a saucepan so that the flavours can combine. I tend to serve this sauce on the side but you could decide to brush the salmon with it.

Once the potatoes are cooked, drain them and toss them in a little butter. Pile the potatoes onto plates and serve immediately alongside the fish.  Serve with a big bowl of dressed salad. Fresh, simple and healthy! Perfect for those nostalgic for the summer months!

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Vanilla Cheesecake with an Oreo Base!

oreo cheescake

Ever since the first time I made this recipe I’ve had multiple requests for it! It’s incredibly versatile and can be tailored to anyone’s preferences. Personally I cannot resist oreos and the thought of them beneath a creamy cheesecake topping is enough to render any diet redundant. However, if oreos aren’t your thing, you can use any biscuit you like! You can also vary the topping by adding a splash of baileys or an extra squeeze of lemon, it really is up to you! My brother in law has requested the extra splash of baileys for the past three Christmas’ and I must say it does add a blush of festive cheer. The following recipe is the original and my personal favourite!

Recipe

For the cheesecake topping

400g cream cheese
6 tbsp icing sugar
the juice of ½ lemon
1 vanilla pod, split (vanilla essence is a good alternative)
600ml double cream
icing sugar to dust

For the biscuit base

1 packet of oreos
75g unsalted butter
a pinch of sugar

For the cheesecake topping, put the cream cheese, vanilla and icing sugar in a large bowl and beat until smooth. Next add the lemon. In another bowl, whip the cream into soft peaks, then fold into the cheesecake topping mixture.

For the base, crush the biscuits, to do this I tend to put them into a sealable food bag and hit them with a rolling pin. You can either crush the biscuits until they are a fine crumb, but I tend to fine that with oreos it’s best to crush them into small, coarse chunks. Once this is done put them in a mixing bowl. Melt the butter in a pan then add to the biscuits a little at a time until they are a consistency that will stick but still crumble slightly. Add a pinch of sugar if you think necessary.

Either in a 10 inch tin or in small chef’s rings, press the biscuit mixture into the bottom and chill to firm.

Once cooled and firm, top the base with the cheesecake mixture and chill until you can’t wait any longer! Top with whatever you think looks pretty, I like to use fruit, chocolate and icing sugar. Rich, delicious and oh so yummy!