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Roasted Pumpkin Soup

This rich roasted pumpkin and garlic soup is lightly spiced with cumin, nutmeg and pepper. Top the soup with a swirl of cream and a sprinkling of nutmeg, and serve it with a thick slice of crusty bread.
You will need about 1.5kg of pumpkin to yield the 1kg of peeled, deseeded pumpkin needed for this recipe.

Ingredients

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350F on convection roast.

Chop pumpkin into even-sized pieces (larger pieces will require a longer roasting time). Place pumpkin, half of the onion, brown sugar and unpeeled garlic cloves in a baking tray/dish, drizzle with three teaspoons of the oil and toss to coat with oil.

Bake for 20 minutes and then remove the garlic so that it doesn't overcook. Continue baking pumpkin until tender and cooked through. Keep an eye on the pumpkin to ensure it doesn't burn although some browning is fine.

Heat remaining teaspoon of oil in large soup pot over medium heat, add rest of onion, celery, carrot, nutmeg, cumin, salt and pepper, cook, stirring for 1 minute.

Add roasted pumpkin and onion mixture with stock and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until onion is soft and stock has reduced, about 20 minutes. The more the stock reduces, the thicker the soup will be.

Add roasted garlic to saucepan. Allow the soup to cool for about half an hour before pureeing in batches in a blender or a hand blender can be used. Be careful if pureeing the soup while it is still very hot.

Garnish with cream and nutmeg and serve!

Makes about 1.25 litres (5 cups) of soup



Carrot & Ginger Soup

Ingredients

Method

Zest the orange then remove skin and cut up the pulp.

Partially cook the carrots and parsnips in a pot of boiling water to soften them for 3-4 minutes, then drain. Place all ingredients in blender except the sour cream, whipping cream, chives and zest from the orange. Blend on soup setting.

While soup is blending, half whip ¼ cup of the whipping cream then fold in the sour cream and pour into a squeeze bottle.

When soup has finished blending, open the blender and taste the soup, adjust flavour with salt and pepper then add remaining ¼ cup of whipping cream and half of the orange zest, cover the blender and turn back on for a few seconds to mix.

Pour into individual bowls and garnish with sour cream mixture and chopped chives.



Chef Pierre's Whirled Pea Soup

Ingredients

Method

The soup setting is very cool… err, hot.

Simply place the peas, water, sour cream, sugar and salt into the blender and adjust the setting to soup mode.  Put the lid on and hit the start button to begin the 5:45 minute cycle.

With about 1 minute remaining, remove the centre cap and put all the mint leaves in then put the cap back in.

When the cycle is done you will just need to check the soup for seasoning and add more salt as needed.

Then you can simply pour the hot soup directly from the blender into a bowl and serve topped with fresh cut chives (and more sour cream if you like).



Cedar Plank Salmon

Ingredients:

  • 1 salmon loin
  • 1 cedar plank, the length of your salmon loin
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon crushed garlic (3-4 cloves)
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar

Mix together, olive oil, sesame oil, crushed garlic, minced ginger, salt and pepper.  Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

When you are ready to cook:

Soak your cedar plank over night or in hot water for at least an hour.

Lightly score a criss-cross pattern across the top of the salmon with a sharp knife, then brush with the ginger-garlic marinade, allow to rest for 15 minutes.

Once your grill is preheated to high, place the salmon loin on the cedar plank then top with brown sugar. Place the plank with salmon directly on the grill and close the lid.

The board will begin to char on the bottom creating a lovely cedar aroma and flavour to your salmon. Cook for 10 minutes and then turn the grill down to medium.

Depending on the size of the salmon loin, it should take approximately 20 to 30 minutes to cook. Check the board by lifting it slightly to make sure it is not burning too fast, you may have to adjust your temperature accordingly.

Salmon is best served medium. You will know it is ready when the juices start coming up and turning white.  Remove from the grill tent with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 5 minutes.

While the salmon is cooking, you can toss some vegetables (peppers, spring onions, zucchini, whole mushrooms) in the same marinade and grill alongside the salmon.



Pizza Dough

Ingredients

Method

Mix the yeast and sugar in the warm water in a large bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer if using) let stand 5 minutes to allow yeast to activate.

Mix together the flour, salt, white pepper, oregano and basil, mix half into the water / yeast mist mixture. Add the olive oil and crushed garlic; then add remaining dry ingredients and mix until the dough comes together and falls from the sides of the bowl.

Remove dough from mixing bowl and place in a large oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and pace in a warm place or on the proof setting in your oven (approximately 100F).

Allow the dough to rise. Once it is double its original size, turn out onto a floured surface and cut into 250 gram portions or 8 inch pizzas. Let the dough rest for about 10 minutes once you have portioned and rolled into a ball shape. Flatten dough and roll out with a rolling pin to a nice 8 inch round.



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