Sat | Sep 23, 2017

The Milky Way

Published:Thursday | June 2, 2016 | 6:03 AM
Creamy bacon sausage Ziti pasta.
Roasted red pepper soup
West Indies mixer
Panna Cotta
Milk and punch
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June 1 was World Milk Day, and to celebrate, the Drink Real Milk campaign is sharing some great recipes, incorporating milk in surprising but delicious ways.

Milk is a nutritious super drink. It provides many of the vitamins and nutrients needed to maintain a healthy diet. Luckily, with all these benefits, milk is also delicious and can work really well as a base or as the star of many dishes. It can even be used in cocktails!

To demonstrate its versatility, these recipes below take care of your entire meal - start to finish. From a rich, roasted red pepper soup appetiser to a main dish of creamy bacon sausage zita pasta, packed with subtle flavours and a kick of Scotch bonnet pepper.

We also have a refreshing West Indies mixer cocktail made with Appleton rum and coffee-flavoured Kahlua; and for dessert, the perfect panna cotta made with sweet, sweet Jamaican mangoes.

Up for a night cap? Try milk and punch. It is made with dark rum and whisky. But be warned! This 'spirited' drink is definitely not for the faint of heart.

Milk and your health

We all know milk is a rich source of calcium, a mineral essential for healthy bones and teeth. It is also fortified with vitamin D, which is also beneficial for bone health. But did you know cow's milk is also a good source of potassium, an increase of which has been associated with reducing blood pressure?

An increase in potassium intake along with a decrease in sodium intake is the most important dietary change that a person can make to reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease.

Milk is also a great source of high-quality protein.

And whole milk is a rich source of energy in the form of saturated fat, which can prevent muscle mass being used for energy. Maintaining a healthy amount of muscle is important for supporting metabolism and contributing to weight loss and weight maintenance.

The protein found in dairy can support muscle growth and repair, making milk a great recovery drink for athletes. These nutritional benefits are more prevalent in liquid milk than powdered or reconstituted milk products.

Despite being so good for us (and tasty!) cow's milk is often overlooked in the kitchen. But this doesn't need to be the case in your kitchen. Try one of these great dishes this weekend and kick-start a new healthy and yummy diet.

 

Roasted red pepper soup

5 whole red peppers

15oz can tomato sauce

3 cups water

3 cups milk

3 tsp onion powder

3 tsp minced garlic

1 tsp salt

1/4 tsp ground black pepper

2/3 cup shredded

 

Parmesan cheese

Method:

1. Roast red peppers on medium heat on stove top until charred, turning often with tongs.

2. Place roasted peppers in bowl and cover for 10 minutes. Remove covering and peel off the skin and remove seeds from peppers.

3. Cut peppers into chunks and add to a large soup pot with tomato sauce over medium-high heat.

4. Once mixture comes to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and remove pot from heat.

5. Use an immersion blender or food processor, pulse until smooth. Add milk, onion powder, garlic, salt, pepper and cheese to pot and stir to combine all ingredients.

6. Simmer for 15-20 minutes over medium-low heat until hot, fragrant and cheese is completely melted. Serve with fresh basil and additional parmesan cheese if desired.

 

Creamy Bacon Sausage Ziti Pasta

1 box Ziti pasta

1 pack Copperwood

Bacon Sausage

4 cloves garlic

1 medium sized onion

1 tsp Scotch bonnet pepper, finely chopped

1 tbsp pepper jelly

Fresh thyme

2 tbs butter

2 tbs flour

2 cups milk

1/3 cup grated

Parmesan cheese

1/3 cup Mozarella cheese

Method:

1. Boil Ziti pasta to al dente.

2.Thinly slice bacon sausages and add it to a saute pan with 1/2 tbs vegetable oil over medium heat. Saute until the sausage becomes evenly browned.

3. Remove pan from heat and set the sausage aside.

4. In a large sauce pan, add butter, onions, garlic and Scotch bonnet pepper.

5. Saute until onions become translucent. Add pepper jelly and stir until it dissolves into butter mixture. Add flour and stir constantly for two minutes. Add milk slowly, whisking constantly to avoid any lumps and scorching. Once all the milk is added, stir frequently for a few minutes until mixture thickens.

6. Add bacon sausage and thyme and mix well.

7. Add both cheese and stir until they are completely melted into sauce. Stir in Ziti pasta to evenly coat each noodle. Garnish with extra cheese and fresh parsley. Enjoy.

 

Dessert

Mango Panna Cotta

3 tsp powdered gelatin

1/4 cup cold water

2 cups cream

1/4 cup sugar

2 cups milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 tsp nutmeg

Pinch salt

2-3 ripe mangoes

Method:

1. Sprinkle the powdered gelatin over the 1/4 cup of cold water in a medium bowl and set aside to soften for about 5 minutes.

2. In a small saucepan, heat the cream and sugar to a light simmer then turn off the heat.

3. Whisk to help the sugar dissolve completely in the liquid. Whisk in the gelatin mix, making sure to whisk out any lumps. Whisk in the milk, vanilla and salt.

4  Peel and cut up the mango into small chunks.

5. Evenly divide about 2/3 of the mango chunks among desired serving dishes.

6. Pour the panna cotta mixture over the mango. Put in the fridge and chill.

7. When panna cotta is getting firm (after about an hour) evenly distribute the rest of the mango on top of it and dust lightly with nutmeg.

8. Chill until completely firm and serve.

 

Cocktails

West Indies Mixer

Ingredients:

2 parts dark rum (Appleton

VX/Signature Blend is a great choice)

2 parks Kahlua

2 parts chocolate sauce

Milk

1 whole cherry

Method:

Fill a shaker with ice cubes. Add kahlua, dark rum and chocolate sauce. Shake and strain into a chilled glass filled with ice cubes. Top up with milk. garnish with cherry and enjoy.

Milk & Punch

Ingredients

1 part whisky

1 part dark rum

4 parts milk, simple syrup and nutmeg, frozen in cubes

4 parts milk

Method:

Fill a chilled glass with ice cubes. Add all ingredients.