Wednesday, 8 October 2008

I Love: Allium Family

Dysfunctional perhaps, but love able for sure. I think people have a love / hate relationship with these guys, probably because they are, shall I say, a little pungent, and can be conducive to giving you gas.

For those who are wondering what on earth I am on about its these guys - Onion (in all its guises), Shallot, Garlic, Spring (Salad / green) Onion, Leek, and Chives. If you've read this blog at all you'll know I love them all, Leek and Cream Cheese Muffins anyone? I've given you 2 recipes using the Allium Family, one a muffin (which I'm sorry is similar to the Leek / Cream Cheese) incorporating alot of the family members and the other a savoury crumble. If you've never made a savoury crumble you really should.
Now, before using leeks in either of the two recipes they need to have the dark green bits trimmed off, and they have to be rinsed inside really well as these suckers hold the dirt. I slice them in half lengthwise and then can get the water in between the layers.

Allium Muffins
Makes 12

½ C finely sliced Leek – firstly trimmed and rinsed (see note above)
½ Onion – finely sliced
2 cloves Garlic - grated
1 ¼ C Plain Flour
1 C Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
2 t Baking Powder
½ t Baking Soda
1 t Salt
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
½ t Garlic Powder
½ t Onion Powder
1 ¼ C Rice Milk
2 Shallots – grated or very finely chopped
¼ C Oil
¼ C finely chopped fresh Chives

Preheat oven to 375F and prepare muffin tins.
In a large sauté pan over medium heat sauté the leek, initial onion and garlic for about 10 minutes, until very soft. Transfer to mixing bowl and keep to one side until required.
In a large bowl sift the dry ingredients (flours through powders).
Add the milk, grated onion and garlic, oil and chives to the sautéed leek mix.
Add liquid ingredients to the dry and mix to just combine.
Spoon mix into tins and bake for 24 - 28 minutes until tests done.
Cool muffins in tin for 5 minutes and then on cooling rack.
This next one is more sort of a recipe. The crumble topping is more of a real recipe, the other bits I did by rule of thumb.
Leek, Potato and Cauliflower Crumble
Preheat oven to 400F and in a large roasting dish with a tinsy bit of oil, roast some sliced leek, cauliflower florets and diced potatoes for about 20 - 30 minutes until a little browned. Remove from oven.
Make a thick white sauce (roux) by melting 2 T Marg in a pan, adding 3 T flour, some herbs (I used dill and parsley) if you like, cooking than to a blonde colour, then adding soymilk by the 1/4 C and stirring to thicken between each addition until it reaches the desired consistency, about 1 1/2 C but whatever you like.
Pour sauce into roasting pan and toss with veggies until all combined.
Top with the crumble topping (as follows) then return to the oven for 20 - 30 more minutes until lightly browned.

Savoury Crumble Topping
1 C Wholewheat Flour
1 C Plain Flour
1/2 C Breadcrumbs
1 C Rolled Oats
1/2 t Salt
1/4 t Black Pepper
1 T Baking Powder
1 t Herbs (as matches dish if you so like) optional
1/4 C Margarine
1/4 C Vegetable Shortening
1/2 C Soymilk

In a large bowl mix together the flours, breadcrumbs, oats, salt, pepper and herbs (if using).
Rub or cut in the margarine and shortening to form breadcrumb like mix.
Add in soymilk and mix to combine.
It will be a dry mix with clumps of dough, its fine you want it like this to get the crumble effect!
Good with the Miso Gravy from La Dolce Vegan!

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