Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Food of Love

The ripe beetroot stain of his lips flashed through my mind as he bent into kiss me; my eyes involuntarily closing with the action. His tongue played magic with mine as the sweet nectarine juices, mingled with the subtle sourness of the apple and the creamy saltiness from the pistachio crumbs, still lingered there... I was drifting... and I never wanted it to end.

For centuries food and love have been inexplicably intertwined and this Valentine's Day there will be no exception. The simple flavours in this dish all join together in a harmonious dance of love; a seduction of the senses.

Beetroot Carpaccio with Pomegranate Jelly and Infused Olive Oil:

(Serves 2 as a starter)


2 -3 Baby Beetroot, Sliced Very Thinly
1/2 - 1 Pomegranate (you can use pomegranate juice)
Gelatin (about 1 - 2 leaves)
1/2 - 2 Teaspoons Fructose or Sugar
1/2 - 1 Nectarine, Cut into Thin Slices
1/2 - 1 Apple, Cut into Thin Slices
Salted Pistachio Crumbs (for dipping the apple slices into)
Parmesan Infused Olive Oil
Basil Infused Olive Oil
Mustard Microherbs (for garnish)
Edible Flowers (for garnish)


Start off by squeezing the juice from the pomegranate – an idea is to rub the pips through a sieve – so that the pips and juice are separated
Halve the juice and add half the gelatin mixture to it (you will need to melt the leaves in a drop of hot water)
Add fructose to the other half of the pomegranate juice to sweeten it – don’t overdo it – and add the rest of the gelatin mixture
Transfer the jelly to an ice cube tray and allow to set in the fridge for a minimum of 2 hours
Arrange the thinly sliced beetroot into a circle on a place
Add four slices of nectarine on top of the beetroot in a wheel-like fashion
Dip the edges of the apple slices (skin side) into the pistachio crumbs (crush some pistachio nuts in a pestle and mortar)
Arrange on the beetroot next to the nectarine slices – also in a wheel-like fashion
Top with some mustard microherbs and edible flowers
Take the jelly out of the fridge and slice thinly into little cubes – dot these around the plate – alternating the sweet and sour
You may want to add some more pistachio crumbs for extra flavour and texture
Drizzle over the parmesan and basil infused olive oils

"Cooking is like love, it should be entered into with abandon or not at all.” Harriet Van Horne, ‘Vogue’ 10/1956

1 comment:

  1. Hmmmm, your description of that kiss made me want to make this tonight - have to experience this!