Vine Tomato & Chunky Guacamole Bites

It’s May and the sun is making an appearance, so here I’m bringing to the table a bright & light dish!¬†This works really well as a weekend brunch, a weekday lunch, a starter or an appetiser at a dinner party. It’s pretty versatile too, you can play with the flavours as you wish, oh and did I mention it’s healthy?! Think juicy pan fried on-the-vine tomatoes, zingy lime infused avocado with a hint of chilli. Take a look at the recipe if you fancy making these beauties, it’s below the photos ūüėČ

If you’re wondering about the beautiful ceramic tableware I’ve used in this shoot, wonder no further! They are handmade by London based ceramicist Melisa Dora, you must take a look at her website & Instagram! The feel of her ceramics are lovely to touch, delicate & the perfect weight. The glaze has been applied so neatly and feels really smooth. Watch this space,¬†there’ll be more recipes featuring Melisa Dora’s ceramics coming very soon!

Photography & Recipe: Emma Harrel Photography

Ceramics: Melisa Dora

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Ingredients

Serves 2

1 ripe avocado, two sprigs of vine tomatoes, 1 clove of garlic finely chopped, 1 red chilli de-seeded & finely chopped, 1 large spring onion finely sliced (I used the dark ends to garnish the dish), the juice of half a lime, 2 of the vine tomatoes sliced finely, 1 teaspoon of coconut oil, 1 teaspoon of oregano, your favourite bread sliced and toasted.

Method

1/ Heat the oil in a small frying pan over a medium heat than place the on-the-vine tomatoes in the pan and sprinkle the oregano over them. Meanwhile you can prepare your guacamole.

2/ Slice open the avocado and scoop it out into a bowl, add the garlic, spring onion, tomato, lime and a good grinding of black pepper. Mix together with a fork, occasionally mashing a little, I like it to be nice a chunky!

3/ Slice your bread and toast it.¬†Once the tomatoes have browned a little then they’re ready, simply load up your slices of toasted bread with a good heap of guac then plate it up with the tomatoes on the side. Sprinkle some of the spring onion over the top and some chilli if you like.

4/ Enjoy!

Chilli & Chickpea Curry

For this post I’m sharing a recipe¬†I made in celebration of the widely used ingredient, the chilli. Chillis come in all shapes and sizes, and there are so many different varieties globally. India is probably one of the more¬†known countries for¬†supplying and using the chilli, so what better than making a curry for this shoot! I settled on a¬†Jamie Oliver recipe¬†to use as inspiration. Chilli, tofu & chickpeas make up this curry, served with rice, naan and mango pickle. A fresh and comforting dish that’s healthy and just gets better the older it gets! Recipe below the photos.

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Ingredients

1 red onion, 1¬†garlic¬†clove,¬†200 g tofu,¬†1 fresh red chilli,¬†2 tbsp¬†olive¬†oil,¬†1 tbsp¬†ground coriander,¬†2 tsp ground cumin,¬†¬Ĺ tsp¬†cayenne pepper,¬†1 tsp turmeric,¬†1 tin of chopped tomatoes,¬†2 tsp paprika,¬†2 tsp¬†garam masala,¬†¬Ĺ a lemon,

Optional (if you’re making a feast!): Pickle (lime or mango), mango chutney, fresh lime, parsley or coriander, naan bread, poppadum

Method

  1. Slice the onion & finely chop the garlic clove & chilli.
  2. Drain the tofu & wrap a clean tea towel around it, place on a chopping board (wooden is preferred). Then put a weight on top of the wrapped tofu, such as a heavy book, this drains the water out of the tofu. Leave for 15 mins.
  3. Heat the oil in a pan, add the onion and chopped garlic, and cook gently until the onion begins to brown.
  4. Add the ground coriander and cumin, cayenne and turmeric. Cook for 1 minute. Stir in the tomatoes and half a tin of water. Simmer for 10 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, cut the tofu into cubes & heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a frying pan and cook the tofu over a low heat for around 10 minutes or until golden brown & crispy. You will need to turn the tofu regularly to ensure it doesn’t burn.
  6. Drain, rinse and stir the chickpeas into the tomato sauce, heat through, then add the paprika, garam masala, lemon juice and seasoning to taste, plus more water if it looks too dry.
  7. Stir through the tofu.¬†Serve with¬†basmati rice (optional) naan & pickle. I like to squeeze lime juice over the top and garnish with parsley (because I’m no a fan¬†of coriander!)

Raspberry & Coconut Cake // Thought Clothing

Happy Easter! It’s been a while since my last blog post, and¬†this is¬†a shoot I thought I’d share.¬†Here are a few snaps from a recipe I made for the sustainable clothing brand Thought Clothing. It’s a Raspberry & Coconut cake which I’ve layered with raspberry jam and coconut icing, it’s also dairy and egg free. You can read more about it and find the recipe over on the Thought Clothing’s blog here: Raspberry & Coconut Cake for Thought Clothing

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Smoked Roasted Garlic Soup

I saw some big brown bulbs of smoked garlic at The Spice Shop in Brighton and, falling in love with the smell, I thought they would lend themselves well to a Winter warmer soup. After a little perusing online for a delicious sounding garlic soup, I came across this one from Country Living:¬†Garlic Soup Recipe. I slightly adapted it to be vegan (plus I didn’t have any white wine), so used soya cream, vegetable stock and dairy free butter and didn’t include the wine. It’s a thick and creamy soup packed with lots of garlic goodness, I have to be honest though, I’m not going to share my interpretation of the recipe underneath my photos like I usually do when I share a recipe, because I think the white wine would have really made the dish sing. Therefore I’ll share the photos I took of the soup and you can try the original recipe through this link if you want to have a go! Country Living¬†Garlic Soup Recipe.

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Photography: Emma Harrel Photography 

Sunshine & Salt // Product Shoot

Sunshine & Salt ¬†sell fun and quirky kitchen and home accessories. ¬†From wooden chopping boards¬†with patterns etched onto them,¬†to lovely prints that are all designed exclusively for Sunshine & Salt by illustrator Aless Baylis. The homewares at¬†Sunshine & Salt are unique and bespoke¬†brightening up your home and adding a bit of fun in the kitchen! Check out a few photos I’ve taken for S&S below:

www.sunshineandsalt.co.uk

Photography: www.emmaharrelphotography.com

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Wintry Chocolate & Orange Bundt Cake

 

‘Moody’, ‘decadent’ and ‘dark’ were a few of the words spinning around when Antonia and I were discussing our ideas for our Wintry collaboration. We decided the hero of the shoot would be a¬†beautiful rich cake, featuring pomegranates, as they’re in season this month. Antonia would be¬†taking charge of the props and styling, and¬†I would come up with the recipe along with¬†doing the photography.

Brighton-based stylist, Antonia McKenzie works across the board with her skills, from TV (Tattoo Fixers, Carjackers, Fill Your House For Free) to interior editorial shoots, and of course prop-styling including food (Superfood Bakery). You can see her portfolio over on her website: www.antoniamckenzie.co.uk  So for our Wintry shoot, Antonia had planned, sourced the props and arranged the objects & food ready for me to take some beautiful photos of the Wintry still life set-up. Every detail mattered, from the angle the pomegranates were positioned, to where the syrup was pooled on the dish, and it really paid off!

After perusing the internet for a recipe I settled on this one:¬†dark chocolate & orange bundt cake, with a chocolate ganache and pomegranate syrup,¬†and gave it a couple of tests and adapted slightly.¬†It’s delicious, I highly recommend it! The sponge is moist and rich¬†with freshly squeezed orange juice, Cointreau and¬†chocolate. The cake is then dressed with a silky chocolate ganache and¬†a drizzle of pomegranate syrup, which balances the sweetness of the cake with a slight tartness. Finally pomegranate jewels are dotted on the top. If you’d like to try this recipe I’ve written it underneath the photos.

It was great to collaborate with Antonia on this shoot. I look forward to planning another one!

Photography: Emma Harrel Photography // www.emmaharrelphotography.com

Styling & Props: Antonia McKenzie // www.antoniamckenzie.co.uk

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Wintry Chocolate Bundt Cake

Ingredients

1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder plus 2 tablespoons for dusting pan,¬†¬ĺ cup brewed coffee,¬†4-5 oranges (1 cup orange juice plus zest of two blood oranges),¬†¬ľ cup orange liqueur,¬†1 cup unsalted butter, plus more for buttering pan,¬†1 cup brown sugar,¬†1 cup caster sugar,¬†2 self-raising flour,¬†1¬ľ teaspoons baking soda,¬†¬Ĺ teaspoon salt,¬†2 large eggs,¬†1 teaspoon vanilla,¬†10-inch bundt pan,

Chocolate Ganache Icing

1 heaping cup chocolate chips,¬†¬Ĺ cup ¬†cream

Pomegranate Syrup

juice ¬Ĺ lemon,¬†100ml pomegranate juice (I used POM Wonderful),¬†85g caster sugar,¬†¬Ĺ tsp vanilla extract

Method

  1. Place an oven rack in middle position and preheat the oven to 160¬įC. Brush deleted butter inside the¬†bundt pan then dust with cocoa powder, knocking out excess.
  2. Heat coffee, orange juice, zest, orange liquor, vanilla & butter, in a medium heavy saucepan over moderate heat, whisking, until the butter is melted, then whisk in the cup of cocoa powder. Remove from heat, then add both kinds of sugar and whisk until dissolved, about 1 minute. Let cool.
  3. While chocolate mixture cools, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.
  4. Beat together eggs and vanilla in a small bowl, then temper the eggs by pouring a little of the melted cocoa butter mixture to the eggs, stirring a tablespoon at a time, to gradually warm them. After about 4 tablespoons, add this into the cooling chocolate mixture and whisk well.
  5. Add the chocolate-egg mixutre to the flour mixture and whisk until just combined (batter will be thin and bubbly). Pour batter into the greased and cocoa dusted bundt pan and bake until a wooden pick or skewer inserted in center comes out clean, 40 to 50 minutes.
  6. Cool cake completely in pan on a wire rack, for about 2 hours. Loosen the cake from the pan using tip of a knife, then invert the rack over pan and turn cake out onto the wire rack.
  7. Place a sheet of baking paper below the wire rack. Melt the chocolate chips and milk in a small pan over a very low heat. Stir until combined, then pour over the cake. Let it cool for 20 mins.
  8. For the syrup, add the Pomegranate juice, caster sugar, lemon juice and vanilla extract to a saucepan. On a medium heat, let the sugar dissolve in the juice. After a few boils the liquid will become a little thick but with pourable consistency. When it reaches that stage turn the flame off.
  9.   Drizzle the syrup over the cake and let the baking paper catch the drippings then sprinkle with the pomegranate seeds to finish. Enjoy!

Check out my vegan peanut butter & chocolate tart for some recipe inspiration!