Watercress Mousse with Red Pepper Sauce

Preparation time : 30 minutes,
SETTING TIME : 2 hours,
Cooking time : 15 minutes,
Calories per serving: 265


serves 4
3 oz (75 g) watercress
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons powdered gelatine or agar agar
3 spring onions
8 oz (225 g) medium-fat curd cheese
4 tablespoons semi-skimmed milk
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

for the sauce

2 red peppers
1/2 clove garlic
1/2 pinch of caster sugar
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 sprigs watercress


1. Lightly oil 4 ramekins (yoghurt tubs would also make suitable mould dishes for this recipe) of approximately 3 fl oz (90 ml) capacity.

2. Pour 1 tablespoon of cold water and the lemon juice into a cup, sprinkle over the gelatine, or agar agar, and leave to soften for 5 minutes. Stand the cup in a pan of hot water until the gelatine dissolves.

3. Finely chop the watercress and spring onions. Tip the cheese into a basin and beat in the milk, then stir
in the watercress, spring onions, and seasoning. Add the gelatine to the cheese mixture, beat well, and divide between 4 moulds. Put into the refrigerator and leave for 2 hours, until set.

4. Place the red peppers under a hot grill for 15-20 minutes, turning occasionally to cook on all sides, until the skin blackens and chars.

5. Remove and allow to cool, then peel off the skin and discard the core and seeds. Reserve 1/4 of one pepper for garnish. Crush the garlic, place it in a liquidiser with the caster sugar and the rest of the pepper flesh, and process. When smooth, gradually add the oil, lemon juice, and seasoning.

6. To serve, dip the moulds into very hot water for 10 seconds and invert onto small plates. Pour sauce round each mousse. Garnish with strips of roasted red pepper and sprigs of watercress.

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