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Recipies from Happy Food For Life       by Niklas Ekstedt & Henrik Ennart (Bloomsbury Absolute, £22)

Roast chicken soup with crudités

Soup isn’t merely tasty, it’s also excellent in terms of sustainability. If we choose to eat meat, it’s a ridiculous waste to throw away half of it, so this recipe makes use of the best flavours, which are usually found closest to the bones.

Ingredients

1 whole chicken

2 lemons and/or oranges, cut in half

600ml water

2 yellow onions

2 sticks of celery

3 cloves of garlic

3 parsnips

1 bulb of fennel

2 tablespoons butter

200ml white wine

500ml cream

3–4 tablespoons sherry vinegar

3–4 beetroots (red/white/Chioggia)

2 tablespoons olive oil

Salt

Method

Preheat the oven to 230°C.

Rub the chicken thoroughly with two tablespoons of salt.

Place the chicken and lemon in an ovenproof dish. Roast in the oven for 20 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 175°C.

Pour 300ml of the water over the chicken and continue to roast for 30 minutes or until the juices run clear. Baste the chicken with the liquid in the bottom of the tray every five minutes. 

Remove the chicken from the oven and leave to stand for ten minutes.

Cut off the breast meat (and use for another dish) and set the wings aside. Cut off the legs (and set aside for another recipe). Cut the carcass into 6-8 pieces.

Peel and roughly slice the onions, celery, garlic and parsnips.

Peel the fennel and roughly chop half. Set the other half aside.

Fry the roughly chopped vegetables in the butter in a large saucepan (about five litres) until golden brown.

Add the chicken carcass and wings, and continue to fry for 3-4 minutes. Add the wine and allow to cook until it has reduced by half. 

Add the cream and the remaining 300ml of water, bring to the boil and allow to cook for 60 minutes over a low heat.

Remove from the heat and leave to stand for 30 minutes. 

Strain through a sieve and season the soup with 1-2 tablespoons of sherry vinegar and salt. Slice the beetroots and the remaining fennel thinly, ideally with a mandoline. Mix with the olive oil, the remaining sherry vinegar and salt. Finally serve the salad alongside the soup, topped with the wings.

Får I kål - Lamb with cabbage
and mustard seed

When I was growing up, the sheep breeders on the island of Öland insisted that their sheep tasted best because they flavoured themselves by grazing all their lives on the island’s many wild herbs. I think that might well be true. And at the same time, they contribute to maintaining an open landscape and ecological diversity.

Ingredients

12–16 lamb chops (or saddle or fillet of lamb)

½ Savoy cabbage

20g mustard seeds

100ml spirit vinegar, 12%

200g sugar

300ml water

2 red onions

2 apples

butter, for frying

1 tablespoon honey

6 sprigs of thyme

salt and black pepper

Method

Remove the lamb chops from the refrigerator 30 minutes before frying to temper the meat.

Boil about two litres of water with two tablespoons of salt.

Pick off the best leaves of the Savoy cabbage and cut out the stem from the middle. Cook the cabbage leaves until soft in the boiling water (20–30 seconds). Cool in iced water.

Place the mustard seeds, spirit vinegar, sugar and water in a saucepan. Boil and allow to simmer for 20 minutes. Sieve out the pickled mustard seeds. Peel the red onions. Cut the onions and apple into wedges. Fry them in butter in a hot pan until golden. Finish by adding the honey and thyme. Fry for one minute, then remove from the heat.

Season the lamb chops with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Heat a large frying pan and fry the lamb chops in butter for 2-3 minutes per side or more if you prefer (it’s important not to cover the entire surface of the pan - fry in batches if necessary).

Place the lamb chops on a dish and set aside for 4-5 minutes. 

Heat the cabbage with one tablespoon of water and a knob of butter and then stir in the pickled mustard seeds.

Serve the cabbage with the lamb chops, onion and apple.

Pasta al dente with sage, butter & pine nuts

Pasta tastes great, but won’t it make me fat? No, because moderation and quality are the keywords. The GI value is lower if you choose pasta made from durum wheat and serve it al dente. As always, you have to see the meal as a whole. Here we balance the pasta with black pepper and pine nuts that stabilise the blood sugar and feelings of hunger. 

Ingredients

400g pappardelle, dried

2 cloves of garlic

3 tablespoons butter

8–10 sage leaves, plus extra to garnish

50g Parmesan 

3 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted 

black pepper for serving

Method

Cook the pasta al dente, according to the instructions on the packaging. Drain and leave to steam thoroughly.

Thinly slice the garlic.

Brown the butter slightly and add the sage and garlic.

Add the pasta and mix thoroughly.

Serve with Parmesan shavings, toasted pine nuts, extra finely sliced sage and freshly ground black pepper.