May is for 'Mediterranean'
Updated: May 24, 2018
Our gathering this month for Cook the Book was rather fitting with the warm weather we've finally had in Lancashire. Our inspiration came from Rick Stein's Mediterranean Escapes, a true summer-time cookbook and created a delicious 'mezze' for us!
Beautiful vegetables sweetened by the sun: This is the glory of the Mediterranean diet - Rick Stein's Mediterranean Escapes
I think most were impressed by the book and were hopeful to try other recipes from the book afterwards. Everything looks so fresh, a complete inspiration of foods sweeping across the Mediterranean Sea. Most recipes are abundant of seafood and meats, aubergine, tomatoes and broad bean dishes. Our dishes came from quite a few places in the Mediterranean... Morocco, Sicily, Mallorca, Puglia and Corfu. There are countless other places we could have tried things from too!
Here's our menu for the day:
Dried broad bean soup with cumin, olive oil and paprika
Chicken with sobrasada, courgettes and butter beans
Grilled green pepper and tomato salad with paprika and cumin
Baked Greek omelette with wild greens, herbs, leeks and feta
Tomato and onion salad
Sweet and sour aubergine relish with tomatoes, celery, capers and olives
Parmigiana di Melanzana
Baked sliced aubergines with tomato, taleggio and parmesan cheese
Sicilian orange cake
I took so many photos since the lighting was perfect! Not enough space for them here, so be sure and check them out on our Facebook page!
I love making soups of all variety, but I'm definitely keeping his recipe for creamy Bessara - a fantastic soup from Morocco made with only garlic, water and broad beans. The seasoning of cumin, paprika, olive oil and lemon juice at the end is what makes it such a treat. You can even adapt it to make a dip, which is something I'll try with it next. It's definitely true when he says 'No where else in the world are beans and grains cooked in such exciting ways.'
I do love olive oil, but wasn't a total fan of just how much is used in some of these recipes. I would definitely cut back a little so that things aren't swimming in it! If you love summer-time food that isn't just salads and grilled meats, check out the book - you'll definitely have a few favourites to choose from. He divides the cookbook into easy food categories such as Aubergines, artichokes and the Mediterranean garden, Free-range chicken & eggs, and even a section dedicated to cheese! I also love his commentary of the various places he's been to and describing how much foraging in terms of herbs and greens are used in recipes and the passion of the people there.
We've thoroughly enjoyed cooking and eating together, especially when there are so many inspiring cookbooks out there! We'll reconvene with more exciting cookbooks after the busy summer holidays, but Kindred Suppers will still be going strong with supper clubs and a soon to be new HQ.
Bon appetite and may your summer be filled with some delicious cooking and lots of family and friends to share.