The following recipes feature the fruit and vegetable while encompassing several other food trends.
Lamb-stuffed quince with pomegranate and cilantro includes quince, as well as pomegranate, which has been popular for a number of years. The entree's origins are Mediterranean and Middle Eastern, another food trend that is expected to be hot in 2013. The ingredients are cooked together slowly for maximum flavour.
The recipe for Roasted Cauliflower Salad is from Couvelier's kitchen.
Lamb-stuffed quince with pomegranate and cilantro
"This is a stunning dish that we always go back to," Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi write in "Jerusalem: A Cookbook," which was published in the fall.
"We regularly teach a simplified version in our Saturday morning classes at Leiths cookery school in London. There, we don't stuff the quince but just dice it and cook it in the sauce with the meat filling shaped into meatballs. We recommend doing that if you don't have the time or the inclination to stuff the quince (it is a pretty hardy fruit!). You could use hard pears as an alternative."
400 g (14 oz) ground lamb
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 red chili, chopped
125 ml (1/2 cup) chopped cilantro, plus 30 ml (2 tbsp) for garnish
Scant 125 ml (1/2 cup) breadcrumbs
5 ml (1 tsp) ground allspice
30 ml (2 tbsp) finely grated fresh ginger, divided
2 medium onions, finely chopped (325 ml/1 1/3 cups in total), divided
1 large free-range egg
4 quince (1.3 kg/2 3/4 lb in total)
Juice of 1/2 lemon, plus 15 ml (1 tbsp) freshly squeezed lemon juice
45 ml (3 tbsp) olive oil
8 cardamom pods
10 ml (2 tsp) pomegranate molasses
10 ml (2 tsp) sugar
500 ml (2 cups) chicken stock
Seeds of 1/2 pomegranate
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a mixing bowl, place lamb, garlic, chili, 125 ml (1/2 cup) cilantro, breadcrumbs, allspice, half the ginger, half the onion, egg, 3 ml (3/4 tsp) salt and pepper to taste. Mix well with your hands and set aside.
Peel quince and halve them lengthwise. Put them in a bowl of cold water with the juice of the 1/2 lemon so that they do not turn brown. Use a melon baller or small spoon to remove seeds and hollow out quince halves so that you are left with a 1.5-cm (2/3-inch) shell. Set scooped-out flesh aside. Fill hollows with lamb mixture, using your hands to push it down.
Heat olive oil in a large frying pan for which you have a lid.
Place reserved quince flesh in a food processor, blitz to chop well, then transfer to pan along with remaining onion and ginger. Add cardamom pods. Saute for 10 to 12 minutes until onion has softened. Add molasses, 15 ml (1 tbsp) lemon juice, sugar, stock, 2 ml (1/2 tsp) salt and black pepper to taste and mix well.
Add quince halves to sauce, with the meat stuffing facing upward. Reduce heat to a gentle simmer, cover pan and cook for about 30 minutes. The quince should be completely soft, the meat well cooked and the sauce thick. Remove lid and simmer for a minute or two to reduce the sauce if needed.
Serve warm or at room temperature, sprinkled with 30 ml (2 tbsp) cilantro and pomegranate seeds.
Makes 4 servings.
Source: "Jerusalem: A Cookbook" by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi (Appetite by Random House Canada, 2012).
Roasted Cauliflower Salad
Trend watcher Christine Couvelier says this recipe is one of her favourite ways to prepare the cruciferous vegetable.
1 head cauliflower, broken up into florets (about 2.5 to 5 cm/1 to 2 inches in size)
1 large shallot, thinly sliced
3 medium carrots, peeled and cut into diagonal circles about 1 cm (1/2 inch) wide
15 ml (3 tsp) coriander seeds
20 ml (4 tsp) chopped fresh thyme
30 ml (2 tbsp) olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 l (4 cups) each baby arugula and baby spinach
1 granny smith apple, thinly sliced
4 radishes, thinly sliced
1 red onion, thinly sliced (cut slices in half to form semi-circles)
50 ml (1/4 cup) raisins
50 ml (1/4 cup) cranberries
20 ml (4 tsp) pine nuts, lightly toasted
60 ml (4 tbsp) crumbled goat cheese
15 ml (1 tbsp) Dijon mustard
30 ml (2 tbsp) cider vinegar
150 ml (2/3 cup) olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
On a baking sheet, place cauliflower, shallot and carrots. Sprinkle coriander seeds and thyme over top, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast in a 190 C (375 F) oven for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring often. Vegetables will be fragrant, tender and starting to brown at the edges.
On a large serving platter, place arugula and spinach. Top with apple, radishes, red onion, raisins, cranberries, pine nuts and goat cheese. Layer roasted cauliflower mixture on top.
Dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together mustard, vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. Drizzle over salad and serve.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.
Source: Christine Couvelier, Culinary Concierge www.culinaryconcierge.ca.