Last night I had the pleasure of hosting a dinner party with the new Jamie Oliver Home Cooker by Philips.
10 members of my family got together and we hung posters, balloons, wore aprons and tested out the home cooker! WOW…its so easy to use and such a fabulous machine – bung it in and let it work while you sit back with wine – what’s not to love! lol
We enjoyed Hearty Minestrone Soup….
- 800 millilitres of chicken or vegetable stock, preferably organic
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 4 rashers of smoked streaky bacon or pancetta, chopped
- 1 fresh bay leaf
- 2 small red onions, peeled and halved
- 2 carrots, peeled
- 2 sticks of celery, trimmed
- ½ of a fennel bulb
- 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 small bunch of fresh basil, leaves picked and stalks finely chopped
- 2 x 400 grams of tins plum tomatoes
- 125 millilitres of red wine
- 2 small courgettes, quartered and sliced
- 200g spinach, washed
- 400 grams of cannellini or borlotti beans (tin), drained
- 50 grams of mini pasta shapes
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 20 grams of freshly grated Parmesan cheese, to serve
- extra virgin olive oil
- Start by bringing the stock to the boil in a small saucepan on a high heat, then reduce to a very gentle simmer
- Make sure the stirrer attachment is in place in the HomeCooker pan, then set the temperature to 175°C. Once the pan has heated up, add the olive oil, bacon and bay, then set the timer for 7 minutes to fry the bacon.
- Sit the Cutting tower alongside the HomeCooker with the coarse grater in place and switch it on. Run through the onion, carrot, celery and fennel into the pan (if you don’t have a Cutting tower, simply finely chop by hand).
- Add the garlic and basil stalks, put the lid on slightly ajar and reduce the temperature to 130°C. Set the timer for 20 minutes, so the vegetables get soft but not coloured.
- When the time’s up, add the tomatoes, red wine and courgettes to the pan and set the timer for another 15 minutes.
- Pour in the hot stock and add the spinach, beans and pasta (you could also use up all those mixed, broken bits from the end of pasta packets here – simply place your pasta in a small sandwich bag or wrap it in a tea towel and smash it up with a rolling pin before adding to the soup). Set the timer for a further 15 minutes.
- Check the soup and loosen with a splash of water if needed, then season to taste. Ladle between bowls, sprinkle over the basil leaves and grated Parmesan, drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil and serve.
…followed by Seafood Paella…
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 100 grams of chorizo sausage, sliced
- 1 green pepper, deseeded and roughly chopped
- 4 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
- 1 onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 small bunch of fresh flat-leaf parsley, leaves picked and stalks finely chopped
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 pinch of saffron
- 200 grams of mussels or clams, scrubbed clean and debearded
- 300 grams of paella rice
- 200 grams of jarred red peppers, drained and roughly chopped
- 1 x 400 grams of tin chopped tomatoes
- 800 millilitres of chicken stock, preferably organic
- 12 large raw prawns, shell on
- 100 grams of squid, cleaned and finely sliced into rings
- 150 grams of green beans, trimmed and finely sliced at an angle
- 2 lemons
- Make sure the stirrer attachment is in place in the pan, then set the temperature to 250°C. Once the pan has heated up, add the olive oil and chorizo and set the timer for 5 minutes, so the chorizo starts to turn golden and the fat begins to cook out. Add the chopped green pepper, garlic, onion, parsley stalks, a good pinch of salt and pepper, and the saffron. Set the timer for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, pick through the mussels or clams and throw away any that are open and don’t close when tapped. Reduce the temperature to 175°C and add the rice and jarred peppers. Set the timer for 5 minutes – the rice will get coated in all the lovely flavours in the pan.
- Pour in the tinned tomatoes, stock and a pinch of seasoning. Bring to the boil then reduce the temperature to 130°C. Scatter the prawns evenly over the top of the paella, followed by the squid and the mussels or clams. Put the lid on and set the timer for 5 minutes. When the time’s up, add the sliced green beans to the pan, replace the lid and set the timer for a further 10 minutes.
- Roughly chop and scatter the parsley leaves over the paella and squeeze in the juice from one of the lemons. Divide between your bowls and serve with lemon wedges on the side for squeezing over.
and Pot Roasted Fruit with Lavender Honey.
- • 20 grams blanched hazelnuts
- 4 apricots, halved, stones removed
- 1 ripe, firm pear, cut into eighths, core removed
- 4 fresh figs, halved
- 1 vanilla pod, halved lengthways
- 6 tablespoons wildflower or lavender honey
- 1 punnet of strawberries
- 1 punnet of blueberries
- 2 tablespoons brandy
- 80 grams crème fraîche or natural yoghurt, to serve
- zest of 1 orange, to serve
- Make sure the stirrer attachment is in place in the pan, then set the temperature to 175°C. Once the pan has heated up, add the hazelnuts to the pan and set the timer for 10 minutes to cook until lightly golden. Once the time’s up, tip into a pestle and mortar and put aside.
- Reduce the temperature to 130°C, add the apricot and pear to the pan and set the timer for 10 minutes. When the time’s up, add the figs and vanilla pod and set the timer for a further 10 minutes, so the fruit softens nicely.
- Drizzle the honey into the pan, add the strawberries and blueberries and set the timer for 3 minutes, so the honey starts to bubble. Add the brandy and set the timer for a final 2 minutes. Meanwhile, roughly crush the hazelnuts in the pestle and mortar.
- Spoon the glossy fruit and syrup onto a platter or divide it between bowls, dollop over a little crème fraîche or natural yoghurt, scatter with the chopped nuts and orange zest, then tuck in.
Mmmmm from start to finish I was so impressed with both the home cooker and the food! It was a fabulous night!