It’s that time of year again when all anyone can think about is the runners and riders. Some of us only bet once every 12 months and that’s on the Grand National. If you’ve got a few people around to watch the country’s most famous horse race, then we recommend serving up some nice seasonal produce.
And in the spirit of Aintree, we’ve got a few themed dishes you might want to try.
Red Rum rhubarb crumble cake
Where better to start than with arguably the most well-known horse on the planet. Red Rum won the National a whopping three times in 1973, 1974 and 1977, showing off his incredible skill at jumping.
Honour the ultimate steeplechaser with Red Rum rhubarb crumble cake. April is right in the middle of the season for this tangy fruit, which is packed with vitamin C and potassium, making it the perfect ingredient to cook with right now. Have a go at this recipe from Jane’s Patisserie to delight your guests with little cakes as they arrive.
George Stevens’ spinach parcels
Of course, horses wouldn’t get anywhere in the Grand National without their riders and there’s one jockey that has won the race more than any other – George Stevens. None of us were alive to see him compete, since he hung up his jodhpurs in 1870, but not before riding Freetrader, Emblem, Emblematic and The Colonel to victory (the last one twice!).
Don’t let his name fade into history; make a batch of these delicious spinach parcels by Scrambled Chefs. They are finger food for your guests to munch on while watching the race.
Water Jump salmon quiche
Spectators always look forward to seeing the horses tackle the Water Jump every year, which stands at two foot, six inches high. Watching them spring over it reminds us of salmon leaping upstream, so we’ll be serving this delicious fish at our Grand National bonanza.
This puff pastry quiche from Olive and Mango is wonderfully light and the kind of dish your guests can come back to and steal a slice from all afternoon. Where it says one cup of whipping cream use 340 grams.
Rock the Kasbah lamb kebabs
Rock the Kasbah is one of the horses running in this year’s race and there’s been increasing interest in the nine-year-old trained by Philip Hobbs. The Irish horse hasn’t run since December, but was looking good when he had a racecourse gallop at Exeter recently.
With a name like Rock the Kasbah there’s likely to be at least one of your guests backing him and they’ll want something appropriate to eat. Opt for Bon Appetite’s Moroccan lamb kebabs for a delicious hit of flavour.
Lake View Lad watercress soup
Lining up against Rock the Kasbah will be Lake View Lad, who is the biggest hope for Great Britain this year. He’s already won the first two races of the jumps season and is looking in fine form. He could easily be the first Grand National winner trained by Nick Alexander.
For all your visitors who’ve put their money on the grey, serve them the Greedy Gourmet’s watercress soup. This vibrant green bowl of spring flavours can be served hot or cold and is suitable for making well in advance.