30.04.2020

SNACKS

By Anna Jones

One of the joys of being at home is regular snacking, up your snack game with one of Anna's recipes.

A savoury snack bar. These are as moreish as they are balanced: salty olives and nori (sheets of dried seaweed used to wrap sushi), buttery sesame seeds, toasted oats, crunchy puffed rice and a hint of sweetness. If you are struggling to find brown rice syrup, you could use runny honey, but they won’t set quite as firm, so be sure to store the bars in the fridge.
Makes about 16 bars.

Sesame and green olive bars

  • 2 Sheets of nori
  • 150g Rolled oats
  • 100g Green olives, finely chopped
  • 125g Toasted walnuts, finely chopped
  • 4 Tbsp sesame seeds
  • 30g Unsweetened puffed rice cereal (I use a brown rice one)
  • 2 Tbsp chia seed
  • A small pinch of dried chilli flakes (optional)
  • 250g Brown rice syrup
  • 100g Coconut oil, plus more for greasing
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4. Put the nori on one baking tray and the oats on another. Bake for 3-5 minutes, or until the nori has darkened a little and crumbles easily in your hand and the oats smell toasty.

  2. Grease a 20x30cm baking tray with the coconut oil. Mix all the dry ingredients, including the olives, together in a large bowl and set aside.

  3. Combine the rice syrup and coconut oil in a small saucepan over a medium heat. Stir for a minute or two until it melts and thickens a little – this will take about 4 minutes. Pour the coconut oil mixture over the oat mixture and stir until everything is well mixed.

  4. Spread the mixture into the tin and press down firmly: this will help your bars stick together. Chill for a few hours before cutting into bars – I go for about 16, but you could make them bigger or smaller as you wish. These will keep in the fridge for up to a week.

These little toasts are a riot of colour and represent all that is great about English gardens in the late spring. The first radishes, roasted until they sweeten, the sweet peas, and some allium or chive flowers, if you can get them, add some prettiness as well as a punch of flavour.
Makes 4.

English garden toasts

  • A bunch of radishes
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 Red onion, finely sliced
  • The zest and juice of 1⁄2 unwaxed lemon
  • 200g Podded fresh peas
  • A small bunch of mint
  • 4 Slices of good bread, such as sourdough
  • Salted butter (optional)
  • 100g Soft goat’s cheese or ricotta
  • A few allium flowers, or chopped chives (optional)
  1. Preheat your oven to 200oC/180oC fan/gas 6.

  2. Put the radishes, keeping the tops intact (if you have them), on a baking tray, drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, then roast in the oven for 20 minutes, or until the tops are crisp and the radishes have turned a softer, more mellow pink.

  3. Fill and put the kettle on. Put your sliced onion in a little bowl with a good pinch of salt and the lemon juice. Scrunch it all together with your hands. Leave to one side to continue to lightly pickle.

  4. Pour the boiling water from the kettle into a small saucepan, add a pinch of salt and bring to the boil again. Cook the peas for a few minutes, then drain. Mash them a little with a potato masher or in a large pestle and mortar. Add the lemon zest, then a good pinch of salt and black pepper. Finely chop most of the mint (saving a few little leaves for later) and stir through the peas.

  5. Once the radishes are roasted, toast or griddle your bread. Drizzle with a little olive oil or spread with a little salted butter. Pile the peas on the toasted bread, drain the now-bright-purple onions from their liquid and dot on top of the peas. Crumble the goat’s cheese on top and scatter with radishes. Finish with the remaining mint, and some allium flowers or chopped chives, if you like.

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