Life Food
  • Facebook
    Facebook
  • Twitter
    Twitter
  • Pinterest
    Pinterest
  • +
  • Linkedin
    Linkedin
  • WhatsApp
    WhatsApp
  • Email
    Email
SHARE THIS
  • Facebook
    Facebook
  • Twitter
    Twitter
  • Pinterest
    Pinterest
  • Linkedin
    Linkedin
  • WhatsApp
    WhatsApp
  • Email
    Email

It may still be chilly outside but that doesn’t mean you can’t warm your insides with the flavours of fresh fruit.

When cooking with fresh fruit, there are a few things you need to consider:

  • Don’t be afraid to use the whole fruit, as opposed to just the zest.
  • If you do use zest, don’t zest in advance. The longer the grated peel sits out, the drier, less fragrant and less flavourful it will become.
  • Be careful when working with dairy because too much citrus juice will curdle. 
  • Never add juice to a still-cooking sauce. Wait until after you’ve removed the sauce from the heat.
Now that you’re up-to-speed, it’s time to get cooking. Check out these recipes using season citrus fruits, courtesy of chef Jeff Richards.
cara-cara-tartine-intext.jpg

Cara Cara Orange and Burrata Tartine

Makes two tartines

Burrata is an Italian cheese made by making a ball of mozzarella and stuffing it with mozzarella that has been soaked in cream. Burrata is under-seasoned, so it is imperative to give it a nice kiss of salt. Cara Cara oranges are a great winter/spring orange that has a beautiful pink flesh, the taste of a navel orange, yet more sweet, less acidic and tangy. It pairs perfectly with cheese. Traditional tartines are “open faced” so this dish is perfect to cut up and share with friends and family.

WHAT YOU NEED:

  • 2 big pieces of sourdough bread, toasted
  • 1 ball burrata, cut up and mixed
  • 2 Cara Cara navel oranges, peeled and sliced into circles
  • ¼ bunch mint, picked
  • ½ cup pistachios, crushed
  • 1 cup arugula
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Olive oil

WHAT YOU DO:

  1. To assemble the tartine, toast off sourdough bread with a dash of salt and olive oil.
  2. Mash the burrata cheese so it is a spreadable cheese consistency and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Spread cheese across the sourdough as if you are spreading butter. This ensures each person gets a bit of everything.
  4. Next, lay the arugula on top of the cheese and top with the oranges, mint and pistachios.
  5. Finish the tartines and drizzle with olive oil, pinch of salt and pepper.
  6. Cut into as many slices as desired. 
grapefruit-dressing-pasta-intext.jpg

Poached Salmon, Fennel Salad, Grapefruit Hollandaise

Makes two portions

This quick and easy recipe is a classic pairing of hollandaise and fish, with a light salad. We’re using grapefruit as a twist to lighten the dish and make it stand out. Grapefruit is perfectly ripe between November and May.

WHAT YOU NEED:

  • 2 Salmon Filets (5oz each)
  • 1 Head of Fennel
  • 1 Grapefruit
  • ½ Bunch Chives, chopped
  • 12 Cherry Tomatoes, halved
  • 3 Egg Yolks
  • 3/4 cup Melted Butter
  • 1 Tsp. Cayenne
  • 1 Tsp. White Wine Vinegar
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 4L Water

WHAT YOU DO:

  1. Start by making the fennel salad. First removed the fennel fronds and putting to the side for garnish. Using a mandolin, or thinly slicing, use only the first top half of the fennel and put aside using the bottom for the poaching liquid.
  2. Dress the salad with the juice of half a grape fruit, chives, tomatoes, salt, pepper, olive oil and put aside.
  3. To make the hollandaise, place the egg yolks, juice of half a grape fruit, vinegar, cayenne, salt in a blender and blend until incorporated. Blenders ensure the hollandaise will not separate.
  4. Slowly drizzle the butter, making sure it is not too hot to curdle the egg to emulsify. Put aside and keep warm.
  5. Bring the water up to a low simmer with the bottom half of the fennel and the leftover half grapefruit used to make the salad. DO NOT BOIL to gently cook the fish and not let it break apart.
  6. Poach the salmon for 5-7 minutes until cooked.
  7. Place salmon on a plate with edges in order to catch the hollandaise, drizzle hollandaise over fish and garnish on top with the fennel salad. Perfect for an afternoon lunch or light dinner.
kumquat-dressing-intext-(1).jpg

Roasted Chicken with Basil and Kumquat Dressing

Serves 4 - 6 people

The kumquat is a strange citrus fruit. Available from February-April, it is one of the only citrus fruits that can be eaten skin and all, except for the seeds. Kumquats are smaller, the size of a large olive and are inverted in the way we think of citrus. The skin is sweeter and the flesh has a tangier, bitter taste. This dish can be great on top of potatoes, quinoa, farro etc.; the world is your oyster!

WHAT YOU NEED:

  • 10 Kumquats, halved and de-seeded
  • 1 Whole Chicken: broken down into two legs, two thighs and two breasts
  • ¼ cup raisins
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • ½ bunch basil, chopped
  • 1 cup chickpeas, drained
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup olives, pitted
  • ½ cup Olive oil, for the dressing
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Choice of base: quinoa, mashed potatoes, farro, couscous etc.

WHAT YOU DO:

  1. Start by first cooking the chicken and the shallots. Make sure that the shallots are not sliced too thin so they will not burn in the oven.
  2. Place shallots and chicken in a roasting tray and cook for 35-40 minutes at 425 degrees with a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper. This will ensure that the skin gets crispy.
  3. While the chicken is cooking, place all other ingredients in a small pot and warm thoroughly for 10 minutes to make sure all the ingredients are incorporated.
  4. Make sure that the kumquats have no seeds in them.
  5. In a dish like this, you would need acidity from lemon or wine, but the kumquats will help with the sweetness and the acidity to lighten the dish.
  6. Choose a base in order to serve the chicken on and spoon over the warm dressing and top with the caramelized shallots.
  7. Serve hot!
lemon-cheesecake-intext.jpg

Parmesan and Meyer Lemon Cheesecake

Makes one cheesecake (8 portions)

This recipe is an inventive way of taking a regular cheesecake and putting a fun spin on it with different citrus and cheese options. Its saltiness adds an incredible depth of flavour and adds sodium naturally. Almost every cheesecake uses lemon juice to brighten up the dish, but with this cheesecake, you substitute lemon for Meyer lemon. Meyer lemons are sweeter and less acidic than a regular lemon because they are a cross between lemons and mandarin oranges. They go beautifully with desserts because of their sweetness and are in season between November and March.

WHAT YOU NEED:

  • ½ pound (8 ounces) cream cheese – room temperature
  • 2 large eggs separated (reserve the egg whites)
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • Juice of half a Meyer Lemon
  • Zest of half a Meyer Lemon
  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs (or any other cookie you’d like)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup butter, melted

WHAT YOU DO:

  1. Start with the filling, combine the cream cheese, parmesan cheese, egg yolks, sugar in a bowl, and mix until fully combined.
  2. Once mixed, add in the Meyer lemon juice, zest, and mix.
  3. Whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form and slowly add the whites to the cream cheese mixture.
  4. Fold together gently not to knock out the air in the egg whites – this is what makes cheesecakes fluffy.
  5. Combine graham cracker crumbs, melted butter together, and mix until the texture is similar to wet sand. It should hold together in your hand like a snowball.
  6. Firmly press the cookie mixture into a 9-inch baking tray or spring form pan.
  7. Pre bake the crust at 350 degrees for 8 minutes.
  8. Remove the pan from the oven and let cool before adding your mixture. 
  9. Add cheesecake mixture to the pan and bake at 350 degrees for ~30 minutes- until the middle is set but the cheesecake can jiggle when shaken.
  10. Chill for 3 hours before serving.