Mon | Jun 26, 2017

Beauty of spring flavours

Published:Thursday | May 11, 2017 | 5:16 AMJody-Anne Lawrence
Fruit salad with honey yogurt dressing.
Pan-fried fish with coconut couscous.
Spring smoothie
Strawberry pecan salad with raspberry balsamic vinaigrette.
Spicy lobster and shrimp risotto.
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It's the season of colours and while we are getting busy retrofitting our wardrobes to bring in the colours, it is time we do the same for our diet. To feed our eyes and appetites with all the brightness of Spring, we beckoned the expertise of Chef Noel Cunningham for a few recipes to create a few culinary masterpieces. Enjoy!

Spring Smoothie

This smoothie is a great way to use up any leftover fruits from a fruit platter and be creative. Instead of mixing everything together, I decided to make a rainbow smoothie that would be pleasing to the eyes especially for children. The trick is to make each layer thick enough so the sit on each other. frozen fruits work best. Measurement of frozen fruits is whatever your heart desires, some like the strong flavour some like it lighter, and it also depends on what you have left in your refrigerator.

 

Ingredients

 

Red Layer:

frozen bananas (to taste)

2 tbs plain or Greek yoghurt

frozen raspberries (to taste)

frozen strawberries (to taste)

water or liquid for blending

Orange Layer

frozen bananas

plain or Greek yoghurt

frozen peaches or pear

1 cup frozen mango

water or liquid for blending

Yellow Layer

frozen bananas

2 tbs plain or Greek yoghurt

frozen pineapple

water or liquid for blending

Green Layer

frozen bananas

2 tbs plain or Greek yoghurt

1 handful spinach or left over green juice

water or liquid for blending

Blue Layer

frozen bananas

2 tbs Greek or plain yoghurt

1 cup frozen pineapple

food colouring (just enough to get desired colour)

water or liquid for blending

Purple Layer

frozen bananas

2 tbsp Greek or plain yoghurt

1 cup frozen mixed berries

Magenta Layer

frozen bananas

2 tbsp Greek or plain yoghurt

1/2 cup sliced beets

frozen strawberries or raspberries

 

Directions:

 

For Each Smoothie:

Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Add more liquid if it is too thick.

Transfer the smoothie to a bowl or container, rinse the blender and prep the next smoothie.

To Assemble the Rainbow Smoothie:

Carefully layer each colour smoothie in glasses in rainbow order. If desired, combine the smoothies using a straw or stir stick. Top each smoothie with a toothpick filled with leftover fruit.

In photo: Strawberry pecan salad with raspberry balsamic vinaigrette.

Strawberry Pecan Salad with Raspberry Balsamic Vinaigrette

An exciting and fresh spring salad- light, colourful and versatile with a beautiful crunchy texture which makes it a pleasure to eat.

Ingredients

1 head Romaine lettuce, chopped

red cabbage, shredded

1 small carrot shredded

1/2 cucumber, thinly sliced

2-3 strawberries, thinly sliced

2 tbs pecans

Handful of cherry tomatoes

 

Dressing

1 cup fresh raspberries

1 tbs white sugar

2/3 cup balsamic vinegar

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tbs honey

1/2 tsp salt

Directions:

1. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.

2. Combine raspberries and sugar together in a bowl; set aside for 10 minutes to sweat. Combine the raspberries with the other ingredients and mix in a blender until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

In photo: Pan-fried fish with coconut couscous.

Pan-Fried Fish with Coconut Couscous

This pan-fried fish and couscous is a tasty, wholesome and quick dinner for any day of the week. "

 

Ingredients

1 fish fillet

Salt and pepper to taste

Couscous

1 cup couscous

1/2 cup coconut milk

1/2 cup water

2 tsp salt

1 tbs butter

Method:

1. Cut fish fillets into serving size and season with salt and lemon pepper. Heat butter and remaining oil until bubbling and add fillets to the pan, make sure you hear the sizzle. Cook until golden about four minutes each side (turning only once).

2. Bring coconut milk, water, butter and salt to a boil turn off flame and add couscous. Let steam for five minutes and stir with a fork until fluffy.

Serve fish on top of couscous, topped with garnish and enjoy.

In photo: Fruit salad with honey yogurt dressing.

 

Fruit Salad with Honey Yoghurt Dressing

Cool, creamy and slightly sweet, your entire family will love this fresh fruit salad tossed in a tangy honey-yogurt dressing.

Ingredients

Grapes

pineapple

Blackberry

Blueberries

Kiwi

Raspberries

Dressing

1/4 cup Yoghurt

2 tbs honey

Lime zest

Directions:

1. Whisk together yoghurt and honey in a medium bowl.

2. Arrange fruits in a cup or plate, then top with dressing

3. Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to three days.

 

In photo: Spicy lobster and shrimp risotto.

 

Spicy Lobster and Shrimp Risotto

Ingredients

2 lobster tail

1 lb shrimp

Salt and pepper to taste

2 tsp parsley, chopped

3 cloves garlic, chopped

2 tbs butter

Scotch bonnet pepper, chopped

 

Directions:

 

1. In a heated frying pan melt butter. Season shrimp and lobster with salt and pepper.

2. Saute in butter then add remaining ingredients and cook until shrimp and lobster just turn pink. Remove from flame.

 

For the Risotto

 

2 tbsp butter

2 cups mushrooms, cleaned, trimmed, and cut into half inch pieces

2/3 cup brandy, vermouth, or dry white wine

5-6 cups chicken stock* (use vegetable stock for vegetarian option)

1/3 cup of peeled and minced shallots (or 1/3 cup of yellow or white onion, finely chopped)

1 3/4 cups Arborio rice or other risotto rice

1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 tbs chopped fresh parsley or chives

 

Directions:

 

1. Bring stock to a simmer in a saucepan.

2. Saute the mushrooms, melt butter in a deep, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and shallots and saute about five minutes.

3. Add rice and brandy and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, and reduce liquid by half, about three to four minutes.

4. Add simmering stock, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring enough to keep the rice from sticking to the edges of the pan. Stir the rice almost constantly stirring sloughs off the starch from the rice, making the creamy sauce you're looking for in a risotto.

5. Wait until the stock is almost completely absorbed before adding the next 1/2 cup. This process will take about 25 minutes. The rice should be just cooked and slightly chewy.

6. Stir in the Parmesan cheese and season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley or chives.