GREENHITHE chef Martin McNair knows food. He started his career more than a quarter of a century ago at the Waldorf Hotel in London, has worked at Michelin-starred restaurants, five-star hotels and the QE2.
He has cooked on tour for rock stars like the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton and Janet Jackson, and now he’s set up his own catering firm, A Question of Thyme.
Every month, Martin will bring you the best ideas for seasonal produce. This month, it’s Kale and Jerusalem Artichokes.
With New Years’ resolutions of healthy eating starting to fall by the wayside for a lot of us, what better time to look at how seasonal produce can be both healthy and delicious.
Jerusalem Artichokes are sweet and nutty and look like small knobbly potatoes.
They can be roasted whole then split open and topped with pesto, or sliced and cooked in water until they are soft but firm then fried in rapeseed oil, garlic and thyme to make a great accompaniment to any meat dish.
My favourite though is to peel, roughly chop, and cook in a mix of milk and water then blend and season to make the most nutty, velvety textured soup.
Kale is at its best this time of year and can be used as a side dish as instead of spinach or cabbage.
Use the smaller leaves panned tossed in butter then sprinkled with chopped hazelnuts and nutmeg for an iron rich vegetable dish.
The bigger outer leaves can be chopped and added to broths and stews to liven them up.
As a great healthy snack they can be torn into small pieces, drizzled with olive oil and sea salt and baked for about 40mins in a low to medium oven to make delicious kale crisps.
Go to aquestionofthyme.co.uk