by WILLIAM PEGRAM mailto:email@example.com
Lettuce and Tarragon soup Serves 4
Half a British
Iceberg lettuce, finely shredded
Fry the onion gently in the butter or margarine for 3-4 minutes, add the garlic and flour and stir over the heat for 1 minute. Gradually stir in the stock and milk and bring to the boil. Add most of the lettuce and the tarragon, and season to taste. Simmer for 20 minutes. Blend the soup in a liquidiser until smooth. Return to a clean pan and heat; add the yoghurt and remaining lettuce and continue to heat through, stirring. Garnish with tarragon leaves and serve piping hot.
Lettuce and Basil Roulade Serves 6
Grease a large Swiss roll tin, approx 30cm X 20cm and line it with baking parchment or greased greaseproof paper. Melt the butter or margarine in a saucepan and stir in the flour; cook for 30 seconds. Gradually add the milk and bring to the boil, stirring, until the sauce has thickened. Season to taste. Beat in the egg yolks, half the chopped basil and the shredded lettuce. Whisk the egg whites until stiff but not dry; fold lightly but thoroughly into the sauce mixture. Spoon the prepared mixture into the lined tin and spread out evenly. Bake at 190o C/ Gas mark 5 for about 15 minutes until pale golden in colour, just set but still 'spongy' to the touch.
For the filing, mix the mayonnaise with the remaining chopped basil and the grated cheese; add the chutney.
To serve hot: quickly turn the freshly baked roulade onto a sheet of greaseproof paper and remove the lining paper. Spread with the prepared filing and roll up immediately, as for a Swiss roll.
To serve cold: turn the cooked roulade onto a sheet of greaseproof paper and cover with a damp tea towel. Once cool, remove the tea towel and backing lining paper, spread with the filing and roll up.
Cut into slices, garnish with a few basil leaves and serve.
Noodles with Lettuce Sauce Serves 4
green noodles (fettucine)
Cook the noodles in boiling salted water for 3-4 minutes if using fresh pasta (8-10 minutes if using dried pasta). Meanwhile put the yoghurt, mayonnaise, dill, prawns and broad beans into the top of a double saucepan and heat through gently (alternative, use a basin standing over a pan of gently simmering water).
Drain the cooked pasta thoroughly and toss together will the shredded lettuce. Spoon into a warm bowl, add the sauce and toss together. Season to taste. Serve immediately with grated parmesan cheese.
Iceberg and Smoked Haddock Quiche Serves 6
Roll out the pastry and use to line a loose-bottomed fluted flan case, 21cm in diameter. Press up the edges well. Mix flaked haddock with the finely shredded lettuce, spring onions, dill and chopped hard-boiled eggs; arrange in the pastry case. Put the chopped lettuce, eggs, yoghurt, garlic, salt and pepper into a liquidiser or food processor and blend until smooth. Pour the mixture into the pastry case and bake in a preheated oven, 190o C/ Gas mark 5 for about 35 minutes until golden brown. Serve warm.
Whether you want to treat yourself and your family to a tasty meal or give your guests a special treat, the following recipes will ensure you eat healthily as well as elegantly on special occasions:
Lettuce Soufflé Serves 4
Iceberg lettuce, chopped
Heavily butter a soufflé mould and coat the butter with parmesan. Cook the chopped lettuce in very little water until just tender and drain well. Add 15g of butter or margarine, cook and stir until any remaining water has disappeared. In a separate pan, melt the rest of the butter, blend in the flour, salt and pepper. Cook over a low heat for 3-5 minutes. Blend in the milk and Worcester sauce. Cook and stir until thickened. Remove from the heat and add the Cheddar cheese, stir until melted. Beat in egg yolks, one at a time. Add cooked lettuce. Beat the egg whites until foamy, add cream of tartar and a pinch of salt, then whip until stiff. Stir a quarter into the lettuce mixture, then fold in the remainder. Pour into the soufflé mould and smooth the top; sprinkle with parmesan. Bake in the middle of a preheated oven, 190o C/ Gas mark 5 for 30-40 minutes, until well risen and golden brown. Serve immediately.
Red Mullet in Lettuce Leaves Serves 6
red mullet, scaled, gutted and cleaned
the mullet, inside and out. Mix the Chevre cheese with the lemon rind,
Pesto, finely chopped lettuce and salt and pepper to taste. Stuff the
cavity of each red mullet with the mixture. Blanch the Iceberg lettuce
leaves in boiling water for 1 minute, then refresh immediately in cold
water. Drain thoroughly. Wrap each stuffed red mullet in two lettuce
leaves and lay side by side in an ovenproof dish. Spoon the white wine
over the fish and cover with foil. Cook in a preheated oven, 180o C/ Gas mark 4 for 30-35 minutes,
until the mullet are just tender.
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