Crystal Apple Cucumber, Black Olive with Vegan Feta & Basil

By Nick Hack & Tina King

4 x Crystal apple Cucumbers
100 gr Vegan Feta diced (we can email you our recipe or can be found in most supermarkets)
Basil Flowers and Micro Basil to garnish

100 gr Picked Basil Leaves
200 ml Pomace oil
A bowl of iced water for refreshing the basil leaves

100 gr black pitted olives (we use Provençal olives)
100 ml water

150 ml Water
100 ml White Wine Vinegar
100 gr Caster Sugar
1 x Star Anise
1 x Red Chilli Split

This dish was developed after a neighbour kindly left these wonderful Crystal Apple cucumbers on the doorstep of The Cadeleigh Arms.

"We have never worked with them before, so we had some fun developing this recipe.

With the world and people habits ever changing this dish appeals to a lot of our client base that enjoy our plant-based cooking.

The ‘Vegan Feta’ we make here at the Cadeleigh. You can also find a similar product in most supermarkets."

A beautiful crisp and fragrant aroma with the subtle taste of cucumber which is paired with a bitter black olive puree and salty feta.

As we are now in the winter months, you can substitute the Crystal Apple Cucumber for some delicious squash slow roasted in Sumac.

Pickling Liquor

 Bring the sugar, white wine vinegar, water, Chilli & star anise to a gentle boil and then set aside to cool once the sugar has dissolved.

At this point you can taste the liquor. If you prefer it with more acidity, add more white wine vinegar.

Basil Oil

1. Bring a medium sized pan of water on to the boil with a pinch of salt

2. Add basil leaves and cook for 30 seconds

3. Transfer basil quickly into the bowl of ice-cold water

4. Squeeze as much water out of that basil and pat dry

5. Add to food processor with a pinch of salt gradually adding in the oil until incorporated

At this point you can either use the basil oil as it is, or pass through a fine muslin cloth to be left with a perfect vibrant green basil oil

Black Olive puree

1. Place olives in a saucepan with water and gently bring to the boil. Simmer for 5 minutes until the olives soften.

2. Transfer Olives to a blender placing the cooking liquor to one side.

3. Blitz the olives, slowly adding enough of the cooking liquor until you have a smooth consistency.

4. Pass through a sieve and transfer to a piping bag and pop in the fridge

Cucumber Salad

1. Scorch the skin of the Cucumber with a blow torch

2. Slice the cucumber into 4 mm slices and place in the pickling liquor for 5 minutes then remove and pat dry

3. Arrange cucumber overlapping in a round circle or be creative and make your own shape!

4. Add cubes of feta

5. Pipe black olive puree in dots in and around the cucumber and feta

6. Drizzle basil oil over the top

7. Garnish with flowers and micro basil