ITALIAN NATURAL SET MENU
STARTER- Baby Courgette Soup with homemade Grissini
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 Brown Onion, finely sliced
- 1 Large Garlic Clove, crushed
- 670g Baby Courgettes, trimmed and finely sliced
- 670ml Hot Vegetable Stock
- 3 Basil Leaves, plus a handful of small leaves for garnish
- 130g Onken Natural Set Yoghurt, plus extra to serve
For the grissini
- 116g Self-raising flour, plus extra for dusting
- 100g Onken Natural Set Yoghurt, plus extra to serve
- ¼ Tsp Fine Sea Salt
For the basil oil
- 6 Basil Leaves
- 5 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Step 1
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for around 10 minutes, frequently stirring until softened and lightly golden. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute.
- Step 2
Add the courgette, season with a little salt, stir well to coat in the oil, cover the pan and cook for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the courgette is falling apart and is lightly coloured.
- Step 3
Add the vegetable stock and the first portion of basil leaves and simmer for a further 10 minutes. Blitz in the pan using a stick blender until smooth. The soup can be made up to this stage one day in advance.
- Step 4
Whilst the soup is cooking, make the grissini. Preheat the oven to 240C/220C Fan/Gas Mark 9. Line 1-2 large baking trays with baking parchment. Combine the flour, Onken Natural Set Yogurt and sea salt in a large mixing bowl and bring them together using a wooden spoon or your hands to form a dough. Take a small piece of dough (around 30g) and roll out on a lightly floured surface until long and thin. Place on the baking tray. Repeat with the remaining dough to get 2 long grissini per person. Bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes, until golden and firm. Leave to cool. These can be made up to two days in advance. Store in an airtight container.
- Step 5
To make the basil oil, place the olive oil and basil into a small blender and blend until fully combined. Strain through a small sieve into a bowl. Cover the bowl with clingfilm and store in the fridge for up to 2 days.
- Step 6
When ready to serve the soup, re-heat the soup until hot. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk through the Onken Natural Set Yogurt. Season to taste. Divide the soup between shallow bowls. Swirl 1/2 tbsp of Onken Natural Set through each soup, drizzle with a little of the basil oil and garnish with a few basil leaves. Serve each soup with 2 breadsticks per person
MAIN Orecchiette with Italian Sausage Ragù, Fennel and Chilli
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 Red onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 150 Carrots, peeled and finely chopped
- 150g Celery, trimmed and finely chopped
- ½ Tsp Fennel Seeds
- 400g Good quality Italian Pork Sausages, casings removed Tip: For a vegetarian version, you could swap the sausage for cooked green lentils.
- 400g Orecchiette Pasta Tip: Use gluten-free pasta for guests with a gluten allergy. Make sure the sausages are gluten-free as well.
- 400g Onken Natural Set Yogurt
- 1 Red Chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
Heat the olive oil in a large, deep frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the onion, carrot and celery along with a pinch of salt and cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until deeply golden and caramelised.
Add the fennel seeds and sausage. Break the sausage up using two forks until it’s completely crumbled. Cook for another 15-20 minutes until the sausage is well browned and the vegetables have caramelised.
Tip: Make sure to really colour the veg and meat – the flavour really comes through and it’s worth the extra cooking time! Season the veg at the beginning but make sure to taste the dishes at the end and season to taste to get the seasoning right.
Remove the pan from the heat and leave to cool. Tip into a bowl, cover with clingfilm and place in the fridge. This step can be done the day before the dinner party.
When ready to serve, tip the pork sausage ragù into a large, deep frying pan and heat over medium-low heat until hot.
Meanwhile, bring a large pan of salted water to a boil and add the orecchiette. Cook according to the pack instructions. Drain, then tip back into the pan. Add the sausage ragù and stir through the Onken Natural Set Yogurt. Season to taste. Divide the pasta between 1 shallow bowl per guest and top with red chilli and extra freshly ground black pepper before serving.
Tip: When cooking a large amount of pasta, make sure you use a very large pan filled with plenty of water so that the pasta has room to cook and doesn’t stick together. If needed, divide the pasta and cook in two separate pans.
DESSERT Strawberry Pistachio Tiramisù
- 400g Strawberries, trimmed and finely chopped Tip: Choose small strawberries, as they tend to be tastier than larger ones.
- 15g Caster Sugar
- 10ml Lime Juice
- 200g Double Cream
- 50 Tbsp Icing Sugar
- 200g Onken Natural Set Yogurt
- 12 Sponge Fingers
- 20g Unsalted, shelled pistachios, finely chopped Tip: You can swap the pistachios for dark chocolate, finely grated or chopped.
- Step 1
Place the strawberries into a large mixing bowl and add the caster sugar and lime juice. Stir well to combine then set aside for at least 30 minutes (up until 4 hours).
- Step 2
Using an electric hand whisk, whisk the double cream with the icing sugar until soft peaks, then stir through Onken Natural Set Yogurt until well combined.
- Step 3
Use one small glass per guest (around 8cm tall, 7.5cm wide). Break the sponge fingers in half and place half of them on the bottom of the glass. Top with a few spoonfuls (around 45g) of marinated strawberries followed by a few spoonfuls (around 45g) of cream/yoghurt mixture. Add another layer of sponge fingers and repeat with the strawberries and cream. Repeat for each glass. Cover the glasses with clingfilm and place in the fridge for at least 4 hours or up to 1 day.
Before serving, remove the clingfilm and sprinkle over the chopped pistachios