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The Dips thread



Why I ask the question? I found the original comment somewhat hurtful and was wondering whether I am too sensitive or it was meant that way. I guess it is normally the former.


What’s wrong with kale??? It’s as old as the hills and a great Scottish winter standby.

You can shred it and steam it and serve with a bit of stock, crushed toasted peanuts etc. You can fry it in strips! Etc. etc. (plus the above ideas too - the pesto sounds good).


Red Pepper dip
1 tall jar of red peppers. (Available in all good supermarkets).
1 block of good quality feta cheese
Black pepper to taste,
Whizz in a blender
Excellent with carrot sticks :smile:


{looks at watch whilst stomach rumbles } bit early for lunch…


Or alternatively, buy red peppers, cut them into large flat slices, brush skin side with oil, place under hot grill skin up till skin is charred, place into plastic bag (tie bag) till cold, peel off charred skin then follow rest of recipe.


Salsa dip
I made this the other day and its great, just kind of made it up . It’s very spicy so if you don’t like the heat too much don’t add as many chilli’s.
7-8 large tomatoes
Handful of cherry tomatoes
8 cloves of garlic
12 (or so) green halapenos chillis
Large bunch of coriander
Black pepper
Couple of shallots or a red onion

Remove the stalks from the chillis.
Place the tomatoes, garlic and chilli’s either under the grill or on a BBQ and roast until the skin starts to turn black. Turn to cook all sides. This may take you a few batches.
Remove from the heat and then remove the blackened skins from the tomatoes.
Put half the skins in a blender and discard the others.
Remove the garlic from their skins and add to blender along with all other ingredients including the choriander.
Blitz up and enjoy the very fiery salsa.


I’ve a similar recipe and it includes a dash of red wine vinegar…it really does make a difference (but probably not allowed to be called salsa now!!)


Marrowfat Raita. (For lazy people)
-Tin of Marrowfat peas, drained.
-Pot of natural yoghurt
-Teaspoon of ready made mint sauce

Time to make- 30 seconds.
Blitz drained peas and mint sauce, 10 seconds. Add yoghurt, pinch of salt and black pepper, blitz for 5 seconds.
Serve lightly chilled with warm flatbreads and any wine you fancy.

Posh version. Reserve 3 Peas, use as a garnish with a sprig of mint leaves and twist of coarse black pepper.


Made a pesto yesterday, ive surpassed myself, its soo good :joy:.
The measurements are estimated as I kind of chucked everything in… here it is:

Hazelnut pesto
100g of hazelnuts,
4 large garlic cloves, (You can use more but I think the ratio was about right)
juice of 2 small lemons (1 large would probably do it too)
40-50g of fresh basil, stalks included
about 150g of hard parmesan, (I used a block)
100ml basil oil
100-150ml other olive oil

Put everything in a blender and whizz.
(I do tend to hold back some of the oil to pour over the top when its in the jar, but its up to you).
It is really good :yum::star_struck:


Having looked at this post immediately after the mouse in trap post I was a bit worried about what the main ingredient of the dip was :yum:



Tomato Ketchup…its for dipping chips into :wink:

I use a Hugh Fiercely-Eatsitall [sic] #recipe (from River Cottage Cookbook) to account for the annual tomato glut…these volumes make approx 600ml of ketchup at our preferred consistency

3kg Ripe Toms - roughly chopped
4 onions, sliced
1 large red pepper, seeded and chopped
100g soft brown sugar
200ml cidre vinegar
1/4 tsp dry mustard powder
cinnamon stick
1 1/2 tsp all spice, whole cloves, ground mace, celery seeds, black peppercorns
1 bay leaf
1 garlic glove, peeled and bruised
paprika to taste (optional)

  • put the toms, onion and red pepper in a pan and simmer until soft
  • push through a sieve and return the liquid to the pan with the sugar, vinegar and mustard
  • excluding the park add the spices in as a bouquet garni
  • bring to th boil and then simmer, stirring often until it reaches the consistency you want - at least 30 mins may be an hour if juicy toms !
  • taste whilst cooking and remove bouquet garni when the flavour becomes right for you.
  • season to taste with salt and paprika
  • bottle …keeps fr one mont once opened and 12 months if in sterilised jars

You can adjust the sugar, vinegar ratio if you wish
You can also play with the spice mix…we normally omit the mace and celery


I am SOOO making this :wink::wink:! Thanks James


obviously all the ingredients were home grown :wink:

well, toms, onion, garlic…sadly pepper crop was :-1:


I’ll need to speak to @ASmith and learn the art of growing veggies in small gardens :woozy_face:


its easy…besides the allotment, I have planters in the garden for lettuce, tomatoes, strawberries etc

Simple rule is …grow things you like and will eat, else its a waste of space and time !

Carrots and radish grow easily in troughs (my sister used 10lt paint style containers…they have the depth for carrots) - radish you can sow a few seeds every coupe of weeks to keep the crop going over the summer
Tomatoes in a grow bag…so much better fresh off the plant!
Strawberries in a planter or mixed in a flower border
Rasberries only need a thin piece of soil against a fence / wall and don’t take much space…other than vertical
Apple / pear - cordon on a wall/fence

Don’t bother with onions as they are cheap and use a lot of land !
Figs sound great but the plants/trees grow so much

Loads of books available on the subject


Looks great … next year then :+1:


Main issue with veg in the garden is insufficient hours of sunshine (in what is already a horribly unsunny climate, the least sunny in our continent). Very few vegetables will do well with only a few hours sunshine on one of the few sunny days - chard is one that seems to manage. Obviously if you have a big garden that gets the sun all day it won’t be such an issue.


whilst things don’t rippen as early as southern med climates we don’t have real problems with lots, you saw my list. We can be caught out by late frosts at the end of April and may and early ones around October (my courgette plants (@Leah add courgette to the list, grows easy in a pot but buy the ‘bambino’ variety) have succumbed to last weeks o/night lows)

I do stay clear of things that do need sustained periods of warmth (as important as direct sunshine) so aubergines, peppers etc are best in a greenhouse in this country…and I don’t have one …yet!

The wall in the pic runs virtually north/south so it is warmed during the morning and the plants (on the west side) see afternoon sun …this does slowly fade due to the position of the house but the last planter has sun until 7/8 at night in the height of the summer.


Eeee you’re lucky, lad! I get caught out up here by late frosts in July (we had mild one in July this year) and the autumn frosts frequently begin in mid September.

However I manage to grow a lot of stuff. I put my courgettes out late and probably don’t get as long a harvest as you. I even grow a couple of varieties of French climbing bean recommended by Fothergills for this harsher climate. In occasional particularly bad summers they get hit by the frosts before the beans have matured but most of the time they’re very successful. I tried sweetcorn once and that failed miserably, just wasn’t a long enough summer for them to ripen.