In partnership with Le Cordon Bleu London 

How have the last 18 months treated you? Did you finally become the culinary whiz that you’ve always dreamt of? Did you start rethinking your future career prospects? If the answer is yes to both of those questions, then it might be time to think about a future in the culinary world. 

Enter Le Cordon Bleu London, the culinary arts institute where all of your cheffing dreams can come true.

It’s here that you’ll be able to develop your passion for the culinary arts, wine and management under the direction of their talented chef instructors and lecturers, all while gaining a wealth of knowledge for how you can put it all into practice in the real world.

Le Cordon Bleu London is part of the leading global network of culinary arts and hospitality management institutes. Rich in over 125 years of heritage and experience, traditional French culinary techniques are still at the heart of the Le Cordon Bleu courses. You’ll be able to learn the ins and outs of culinary techniques, perfect the art of patisserie, become a wine whiz and learn the tricks of management through a whole range of programmes. 

From professional diplomas and certificates to undergraduate and postgraduate courses, learn the tricks of the trade from their Le Cordon Bleu Master Chefs. It’s the perfect place to kickstart your next venture, from home cook to professional.

For those longing to get started in the kitchen straight away and to give you a taste of what techniques you’ll be learning, Le Cordon Bleu London has shared their tasty summer stuffed courgette flowers recipe. Perfect for summer, the humble courgette really takes centre stage here, accompanied by roasted tomatoes, fragrant herbs, creamy ricotta and a healthy scattering of olive oil. 

Light, fresh and easy to prepare, this recipe would work perfectly for a summer dinner party starter or as a barbecue side that’s sure to impress. 

Recipes and techniques like this are taught as part of Le Cordon Bleu London’s Diplôme de Cuisine. Discover this course and more on their website

Now for the recipe…

Stuffed Courgette Flowers

Serves 6

Preparation time: 1 hour

Cook time: 1 hour 35 minutes

Total time: 2 hours 35 minutes

Ingredients

 

Oven-roasted tomatoes
6 plum tomatoes
20 ml olive oil
1 pinch of salt
1 pinch of sugar
4 garlic cloves, skin on
2 – 3 sprigs of thyme

Stuffed courgette flowers
18 courgette flowers

Filling
6 pearl onions
150 g trumpet courgettes
30 ml olive oil
100 ml water or vegetable stock
1/3 bunch of basil, shredded

100 g ricotta
1 egg yolk
30 g grated Parmesan

Tomato sauce
200 g ripe tomatoes
100 ml olive oil
10 ml wine vinegar
1 tsp tomato ketchup (optional)
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Decoration
6 courgettes
1 small gem lettuce
10 ml olive oil
chives

Method

Oven roasted tomatoes:

1. Preheat the oven to 100°C and line a baking tray with baking paper.

2. Peel and deseed the tomatoes and cut into petal shaped pieces. 

3. Place tomato ‘petals’ on the baking tray and drizzle with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and sugar. Add the garlic cloves and sprigs of thyme. Roast for 1 hour.

4. Set the cooking liquid aside and transfer the tomato petals to a wire cooling rack.

Courgette flowers:

1. Remove the stamens and trim the courgette stems.

2. Separate 6 flowers from the courgettes; slice the flowers and reserve for the filling. Thinly slice the 6 courgettes on a mandolin for the decoration.

Filling:

1. Cut 3 pearl onions into quarters and grill on the flat side, set aside. Slice the trumpet courgette and remaining new pearl onions, then in a pan sweat over a low heat with olive oil. If needed, add water or vegetable stock and bring to a simmer, making sure the colour does not change as the liquid is reduced.

2. Once cooked and cooled, roughly chop the cooked vegetables. In a bowl, mix the vegetables with the shredded basil, ricotta, egg yolk, Parmesan and the 6 sliced courgette flowers.

3. Transfer to a disposable pastry bag and snip off the end of the bag. Pipe into each courgette flower.

Sauce:

1. Peel and deseed the tomatoes, sweat oven a high heat in olive oil. Deglaze with the wine vinegar, then add the tomato ketchup. Remove from the heat and season, then using a blender, blend until smooth.

Decoration:

1. Pan fry the courgette slices in olive oil until just soft, about 30 seconds.

2. Cut the gem lettuce into 4 – 6 pieces.

To serve:

1. Arrange a semi-circle of oven-roasted tomato petals in the centre of the plate, position 3 stuffed courgette flowers on the other half of the circle.

2. Spoon the tomato sauce into the centre of the circle and decorate with the grilled onion quarters, softened courgette slices and chives. Pour the reserved oven-roasted tomato cooking liquid around the dish.

For those wanting to find out more, discover this course and more about Le Cordon Bleu London at www.cordonbleu.edu


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