Spanakorizo – Greek spinach and rice

I don’t know about you, but whenever I’ve been on holiday abroad I always tend to bring back with me at least one new dish to try out at home. This year my family enjoyed a wonderful week in Corfu, and the dish I most enjoyed discovering and which I promised myself I’d cook again was this very simple spanakorizo – a kind of Greek pilaf, made with rice, spinach, feta cheese and lots of lovely fresh dill. I’d never come across it before but it’s quickly becoming a family staple – particularly now the weather has turned, and a regular reminder of warmer climes is very welcome. Continue reading “Spanakorizo – Greek spinach and rice”

Beetroot and potato dauphinoise

I came across this delicious dish at one of our local pubs this Christmas, the excellent Holcombe Inn, and decided then I would have to recreate it at home.

It’s a lovely way to use beetroot, which is in plentiful supply at the moment, and is very good served with roast meats. My children really like beetroot, perhaps because it’s quite sweet.

Slice the beetroot and potatoes as thinly as you can. It’s best to use a mandolin if you have one.

This is a perfect dish for the Aga as it needs to be cooked slowly in a low oven.

Beetroot and potato dauphinoise

Serves 2

3 large potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
2 large beetroot, peeled and thinly sliced
Salt and pepper
Handful fresh thyme, picked
4 cloves garlic, crushed
150 ml double cream, perhaps a little more

Preheat the oven to 160°C/Gas Mark 2.

Put the sliced potato and beetroot in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Add the thyme, garlic and cream and combine so that the vegetables are well covered.

Place in a small gratin dish and roughly arrange the potato and beetroot so the slices lie flat. I like to have a layer of potato and then a layer of beetroot and so on. Pack down well.

The cream should almost come to the top of the vegetables. If not, add a little more.

Fleck the top of the vegetables with a little butter and cover with foil.

Bake for around 1½ hours, until the potato and beetroot are tender. Increase the oven temperature to 220°C/Gas Mark 7, remove the foil and return the dish to the oven for another 10-15 minutes until the top has crisped up.