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Family Cooking Day – Recipes

We hope you enjoyed your family cookery class with us, below are the recipes – if you have any questions for chef please do ask and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

Menu: Turkish kebab, stuffed aubergine, Haddock fishcakes, Messine Sauce, carrot cake, jewel couscous.

Turkish Chicken Kebab


    • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, or 4 to 5 boneless, skinless thighs

    • 1 medium onion

    • 2 cloves garlic

    • 1/2 cup plain yogurt, or milk

    • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil

    • 2 tablespoons tomato paste

    • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

    • 1 teaspoon paprika

    • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

    • 1 teaspoon dried oregano, sumac, and paprika, optional



  1. Blot the chicken breasts dry on paper towels.
  2. Cut the meat into bite-sized cubes about the size of large dice.
  3. Using the finest grater possible, make a pulp from the onion and garlic cloves.
  4. Pour this pulp and juice into a fine mesh strainer and, using a wooden spoon, press out the juice into a separate bowl. Discard the onion and garlic pulp.
  5. In bowl, combine the onion-garlic juice, yogurt or milk, oil, tomato paste, black pepper, paprika, and salt. Add the cubed chicken and toss to coat, cover the bowl and refrigerate it for at least 4 hours or overnight for the best results.
  6. If using bamboo skewers, soak them in water for a few hours so they don’t ignite on the grill. 
  7. Preheat a grill to medium heat.
  8. Remove the chicken pieces from the marinade and thread them onto small metal or soaked bamboo kebab skewers. The chunks of chicken can touch each other, but don’t put them too close together to ensure they cook through. Discard any remaining marinade.
  9. Sprinkle the kebabs with salt and put them on the grill. Grill them evenly on all sides, about 12 minutes total. You can sprinkle Turkish spices like oregano, sumac, and paprika over the hot kebabs to add extra flavour.
  10. Serve and enjoy.

Turkish Stuffed Aubergines

  • 2 aubergines (long and slender, if you can find them) or 4-6 small aubergines
  • 135 ml (9 Tbsp) best-quality olive oil (a mild extra virgin if you can)
  • 25 g (1 heaped tsp) tomato paste
  • 300 ml boiling water
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • flat-leaf parsley, to garnish
  • salt and pepper


  • 2 Tbsp best-quality olive oil (a mild extra virgin if you can)
  • 2 medium onions, cut into thin half moons
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 250 g (2 medium) tomatoes, peeled and cut into wedges
  • 10 g flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1 tsp Aleppo pepper (pul biber) or pinch regular chili flakes (optional)
  • salt and pepper


  1. Peel half the skin off the aubergines, so they resemble a zebra pattern. Salt generously and set aside for half an hour.
  2. Meanwhile, make the stuffing. Heat a thick bottomed frying pan over medium heat. Add 2 Tbsp olive oil and fry the onion until softened, but not browned, 8-10 minutes. Stir regularly. Add the garlic and fry for another minute, stirring constantly, taking care not to burn the garlic. Add the tomatoes and Aleppo pepper (if using). Keep frying until the tomatoes collapse and the liquid starts to thicken, 5-6 minutes. Stir every once in a while to ensure nothing catches at the bottom. Add the flat-leaf parsley and some salt and pepper. Take off the heat.
  3. Brush the salt off the aubergines. Heat a thick bottomed frying pan over medium heat. Add 2 Tbsp olive oil and fry the aubergines until they start to soften, turning regularly. Alternatively, roast in a preheated oven at 200 C (390 F) until starting to soften, around 20 minutes.
  4. Make a lengthwise incision in the aubergines, as if opening a baguette, leaving 2 cm at either end. The incision should not pierce through the bottom of the aubergines.
  5. Add the stuffing into the aubergines and place them, stuffed side up, in a pan for which you have a lid. Add the remaining olive oil (5 Tbsp/75 ml) to the pan. Mix the tomato paste, sugar and boiling water with a little salt and pepper. Add enough of the liquid to the pan to go about halfway up the side of the aubergines.
  6. Bring to a boil, put on a lid and turn the heat down to low. Leave to simmer until the aubergines are completely soft, around 45 minutes. Add extra liquid if it’s starting to look a little dry. Set aside to cool completely. Scatter a little flat-leaf parsley over before serving.

Jewelled Couscous with Pomegranate and Lentils


    • 1 cup puy lentils
    • Water
    • Salt
    • 1 ⅔ cup vegetable broth
    • 2 cups instant couscous
    • ½ tsp turmeric spice
    • Olive oil
    • 8 oz mushrooms, cleaned and sliced (I used baby  mushrooms, but white button mushrooms would work)
    • 1 small red onion, chopped
    • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
    • 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
    • 1 tsp sweet paprika
    • ½ tsp ground green cardamom
    • ½ tsp ground coriander
    • ½ tsp ground cumin
    • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
    • 2 tbsp pomegranate molasses
    • Juice of ½ lemon
    • 1 bunch fresh parsley, stems removed, chopped
    • 1 bunch fresh mint (about 30 mint leaves), stems removed, chopped
    • 56 scallions, tops trimmed, chopped (both white and green parts)
    • Seeds (arils) of 1 large pomegranate, more for garnish
    • 10 Medjool dates, pitted, chopped (figs or dried apricots would work here as well)
    • 1 cup gold raisins
    • ½ cup EACH shelled chopped pistachios, chopped walnuts, toasted pine nuts, more for
    • garnish


  1. Wash the lentils under cold running water. Drain.
  2. Cook the Lentils. Place the lentils in a saucepan and add 3 cups of water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer for 30 minutes until the lentils cook through (they should absorb all the water). Add a pinch of salt and remove from heat.
  3. Cook the couscous. While the lentils are cooking, make the couscous. In a saucepan, bring the vegetable broth to a boil. Remove from heat then stir in couscous, turmeric, pinch of salt, ½ tbsp olive oil. Cover and let sit 5 minutes to finish cooking. Fluff with a fork and give it a try. If needed, stir in just a little more boiled vegetable broth.
  4. Make the mushrooms. In a large cast iron skillet like this one, heat 2 tbsp olive oil. Add the mushrooms. Cook for 4 minutes on high, tossing occasionally, until the mushrooms begin to gain color. Reduce heat to medium-high, and stir the onions and garlic and cook a couple more minutes.
  5. Now put everything together. In the same skillet, add in the cooked lentils and couscous. Add salt, cinnamon, paprika, cardamom, coriander, and black pepper. Mix the pomegranate molasses and lemon juice with 1 tbsp olive oil, and add the liquid to the skillet with the couscous and lentil mixture. Toss to combine. Cook on medium, stirring regularly until warmed through.
  6. Remove from the heat and add the remaining ingredients. You can transfer to a larger mixing bowl, and using a large wooden spoon, mix to combine. Transfer the couscous to a serving platter and garnish with more pomegranate seeds and nuts.

Carrot Cake

Makes one double-layer 23cm cake, serving 12, or 24 cupcakes

For the sponge

  • carrots 250g, grated
    unsweetened desiccated coconut 100g
    pecans 100g, lightly toasted and chopped fine
    vegetable oil 400g
    vanilla extract 1½ tsp
    caster sugar 400g
    eggs 2
    egg yolks 2, plus 4 egg whites
    plain flour 320g
    baking powder 1 tsp
    bicarbonate of soda 1 tsp
    ground cinnamon 2 tsp
    salt ½ tsp
  • unsalted butter 200g, softened
    cream cheese 250g
    icing sugar 750g, sifted
    vanilla extract ½ tsp


  1. Preheat your oven to 150C fan/gas mark 3. Butter 2 x 23cm cake tins and line with parchment paper, or line 2 x 12-cup muffin trays with paper cases.

    In a large mixing bowl, combine the carrots, coconut and pecans and set aside.

    In the bowl of an electric mixer, whisk the vegetable oil, vanilla, 200g of the caster sugar, the 2 whole eggs and the egg yolks until foamy. Add this to the carrot mixture and fold together well. Wash and thoroughly dry this bowl, ready for the egg whites.

    In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and cinnamon, and fold into the egg and carrot mixture until barely combined.

    In your clean electric mixer bowl, whisk together the egg whites, salt and the remaining 200g of caster sugar until the mixture forms stiff, meringue-like peaks. Fold this into the carrot mixture until just combined. Either divide the mixture between the two cake tins, levelling the tops with a palette knife or spatula, or scoop it into the cupcake cases, filling each case half-full.

    The whole cakes will take about 1 hour to bake and the cupcakes about 25 minutes. The cakes are ready when an inserted skewer comes out clean.

    To make the icing, in the bowl of an electric mixer, whip the butter until it is light and creamy. Add the cream cheese and beat well. Gradually add the icing sugar and beat on a low speed for 3 minutes. Scrape down the bowl, then add the vanilla and beat for another 5 minutes.

    Use the cream cheese icing to decorate the cupcakes or to fill and ice the top and sides of the whole cakes – or you can just ice the tops of each cake and sandwich them together.

    The icing can be kept at room temperature for a couple of hours; otherwise store it in the fridge for up to one week. Before using, remove from the fridge and let it soften for about 20 minutes, then whip again for about 4-5 minutes.

Fish Cakes


  • 12 oz smoked haddock (or other flaky fish)
    12 oz mashed potatoes (floury potatoes are best)
    1 egg
    about 3/4 tsp Diamond Kosher or sea salt
  • Chopped tarragon
  • Spring onions
    freshly ground black pepper, as desired
    chopped parsley, as desired

For coating/frying

  • 1 egg
    olive oil


  1. Place the smoked haddock in a shallow pot and pour in enough milk to cover the fish. Remove the fish and bring the milk to a boil. Add the haddock again, reduce the heat and simmer for 4 minutes. Remove the cooked haddock from the milk and set aside to cool. Next, remove the skin and flake the fish.
  2. Put the mashed potatoes, flaked fish, 1 egg, salt, pepper and parsley into a bowl and mix together gently until well combined.
  3. Form the potato and fish mixture into patties. You can make them smaller, as appetisers, or larger for a main dish serving
  4. Cover and chill for at least 15 minutes.
  5. Beat the other egg and place in a tray or plate for dipping. In another tray or plate, place breadcrumbs. Dip each smoked haddock and potato cake in egg and coat evenly.
  6. Next, dip in the breadcrumbs and place on a tray
  7. Put some oil in a nonstick or stainless steel frying pan and heat on medium high. Start adding a few smoked haddock fish cakes at a time. Fry until nicely golden brown before turning.
  8. Put some oil in a nonstick or stainless steel frying pan and heat on medium high. Start adding a few smoked haddock fish cakes at a time. Fry until nicely golden brown before turning.

Messine Sauce


  • 50 g/2 oz butter
    1 small onion or 2 shallots, chopped
    ½ tablespoon each chopped chervil, tarragon and parsley
    2 teaspoons flour
    600 ml/1 pint single cream (or half single cream and half milk)
    Juice of ½ lemon
    2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
    Pinch of salt
    freshly ground black pepper


  1. Melt the butter in a pan and sweat the onion or shallots for 5 minutes, until tender. Add the herbs and cook slowly for a further 5 minutes. Stir in the flour and cook gently for 2 minutes. Gradually add the cream or milk and cream. Flavour with lemon juice, mustard, salt and pepper. Continue to cook over a low heat for 5 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings.

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