Finally for this week, I tackled Avocados yet again. No one can ever get bored of avocados. They are just such a delicious, perfect thing. But being so perfect, it is quite difficult to find recipes for them, when they are quite happy just being left alone.
So I thought long and hard about what my real favourite way to eat avocado was. And what came in top, higher even than that fabulous 70’s diner party classic of Avocado Stuffed with Prawns and Marie Rose Sauce, came my all time, absolute favourite of Bacon, Tomato and Avocado Sandwich with Mayo. Super simple, super good. Few top tips. Use good bread. I used Gail’s Sourdough, lightly toasted. Use good bacon. I like smoked streaky. The hint of smoke adds flavour and I like my bacon super crisp and only streaky can crisp up to perfection. Start on a lower heat with a little oil and render down the fat in the bacon, before turning up the heat and crisping it up to perfection. Some people like to dip the toast in the rendered bacon fat. I am quite the opposite, I dry my bacon on kitchen paper, but however you like it, I don’t think I really have to say anymore. The photos say it all.
Bacon, Tomato, Avocado and Mayo Sourdough Sandwich
2 slices sourdough bread, lightly toasted
½ a perfectly ripe avocado
½ a perfectly ripe large tomato
1 tbsp. Mayonnaise
5 rashers good quality smoked streaky bacon
Heat a frying pan with a little sunflower oil. Lay out your bacon rashes and cook gently to render the fat. Then turn up the heat and crisp up completely on both sides. Drain on kitchen towel. Meanwhile spread mayonnaise on one piece of toast. Top with bacon, then tomato slices. Season with a pinch of salt, top with avocado and finally the top piece of toast. Eat immediately.
This week I got a Small Veg Box Less Roots which had leeks, green cabbage, mixed salad leaves, avocados, celery and sweetcorn.
I have cooked a Riverford Lunch this week already and I have a SuperClub on Thursday so I thought I would test out a recipe I am serving at both. I think people forget about Celery Soup. I suppose it just sounds a bit dull. Celery is one of those vegetables that everyone throws into their stocks, stews and sauces but never rarely let’s steal the show. But I love its clean, fresh and savoury taste. It is important to sweat the celery down for a long time to intensify the flavour and let it caramelise a little. I always think with soups, that the initial cooking is the most important. All the flavour should be released at this stage and the boiling at the end when the liquid is added should be minimal. I love this soup with its pale green hue. It could almost be a Farrow and Ball Colour. I like It with the salty kick of the blue cheese crostini but some prefer some crispy bacon scattered on top instead or just a drizzle of olive oil. Give it a try!
Celery Soup, Blue Cheese Crostini
2 heads celery (washed and chopped)
Small bunch of thyme, wrapped up in string
Generous glug of good quality Olive Oil
2 Pints of Vegetable stock or just water will do
250mls double cream
Sea Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper
Crostini – cut thin slices of French bread and drizzle with olive oil and toast in the oven until golden brown
Sweat the celery and thyme in the olive oil for about 30-40 minutes over a low heat until just about to brown. The secret of this recipe is really giving the celery time to cook slowly now and intensify its flavour but do not allow to burn. Add the stock or water. The celery should just be covered with liquid. Add a good pinch or two of salt and slowly boil for about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the cream. Remove the thyme bundle and squeeze out the juices. Liquidize or whiz with a hand blender. Do this thoroughly. You do not want it to be stringy. It should not be necessary to strain but if need be, then do. (If your celery looks very stringy when you start, you could lightly peel it before chopping.) Add a generous pinch of freshly ground black pepper and more salt if necessary, to taste. Serve with the blue cheese spread on the Crostini.