I found this recipe on the Waitrose site. It’s pretty basic so I added some pumpkin seeds and sage. I found I needed extra time for my rubbish old electric oven, as it was still a little raw in the middle after the stipulated time. After an extra 15 minutes, it was perfect, nutty and crumbly needing nothing more than a smear of butter.Read the rest of this entry »
I’ve been wanting to make a roast tomato soup for ages. After some mild research I decided to go for a classic combination of Gordon Ramsay’s (Secrets) and Delia’s (Vegetarian Collection), but with more emphasis on Gordon’s for ingredients and Delia’s for technique, with a few added touches of my own. I added a splash of Tempranillo to the soup rather than Balsamic vinegar and lemon thyme instead of basil. I found that Gordon’s roasting time left the tomatoes looking a bit “raw” so I turned the heat down to 190°C and left them in there for an hour. I also mixed Woodsmoke BBQ sauce with the water I used to re-hydrate the sundried tomatoes. I didn’t have olive oil so used a mixture of flax seed and rice bran oils instead. Finally I had a tiny bit of tomato vinegar in the back of the cupboard so trickled this in to serve.Read the rest of this entry »
I hate broccoli. Liver, spinach, anchovies, olives – I have no problem with any of these things. But broccoli? Bleugh. I only eat it if it’s so smothered in something else (cheese sauce) that there is no remaining hint of that weird, irony taste. At least that’s what I used to do. I recently discovered that if you roast it, it becomes not only edible but actually very very delicious.
I am proud to say that my anti-broccoli days are now behind me. Indeed, it is not uncommon for me to make a bowl of these as a little snack, or have them as a side dish with a nice bit of grilled fish. The broccoli becomes charred and almost caramelised, and the salty, garlicky juices go perfectly with a squeeze of lemon.
Another happy accident. The kind that only occurs when you think there’s nothing in the fridge but you stand there for ages anyway just staring into it’s cool, glowing womb-like shelter, thinking… Eggs and curry powder are soul mates; and topping this with grilled cheddar makes the whole dish come alive.Read the rest of this entry »
It’s wonderful what you can come up with when faced with a 5kg bag of spuds. This was my dilemma when I asked the other half to buy me a single large potato from our local corner shop. The potato was needed for wrapping in tin foil and skewering with a multitude of cheese and pineapple sticks – this was to be the glorious centrepiece for a cheese and wine party.
He proudly returned with said bag. All for only £2.
I decided to satisfy my samosa weakness with these potato, pea and cashew nut beauties. Making your own pastry makes all the difference, filo pastry just isn’t the same. I like to use a mixture of rice and plain flour for extra crispy results, but all plain flour is fine if you can’t get hold of rice flour. It’s so much easier than you might think and you can customise it with poppy, sesame or cumin seeds. These are addictive and are lovely cold with a big dollop of yoghurt dip.
I wanted to use up a surfeit of those cheap bags of “basics” carrots I found hiding in the bottom of my salad box. It seemed like such a good idea in the supermarket, what with everyone fighting over the reduced cabbages, the ubiquitous recession mentality rife in the fruit and veg aisles. Then you get home and all you really want is steak and chips.
There’s a great recipe in Delia’s Vegetarian Collection, but after a bit of research I found that the best “tried and tested” recipes seem to rate vegetable oil over butter and definitely golden syrup as well as sugar. I also added a drop of vanilla essence and a touch of nutmeg. I had some pecans that needed using up so threw those in too. It was perfect eaten straight from the oven with slices of cheddar. This will keep in an airtight container for a couple of days (if you can resist it for that long). Even a couple of days later it was still moist and crumbly.
Bengalis call anything that’s been “egged-and-breaded” a chop although these are really just jazzed up fishcakes. My mum used to make me these addictive fishcakes after school and I’ve noticed that a lot of my Punjabi friends make “store cupboard curries” from tins of tuna so perhaps our parents had a bit of a “make do and mend” attitude when they first came over here. I had some spare wasabi floating around in the fridge and found that the robust flavours paired exquisitely.
There’s something really satisfying about knowing that a delicious, healthy meal can be thrown together from store cupboard ingredients and if you make too many you can always freeze them after egging and crumbing. These addictive fishcakes are spiked with lemony notes of ginger, and the dressing is piquant and creamy with a mulish after-kick of wasabi.
I’d never made “Kedgeree” before. My mum brought us up on “kitchuri” which is quite a different beast (no fish or eggs, more lentils rice and spices) which I believe is the original dish this colonial version was based on. After looking at James Martin’s and Delia’s version, I came up with a slightly wetter concoction.
This ‘kedgereesotto’ cost me £1, makes enough to feed two with enough leftover to freeze, and resides in that satisfying spot where healthy food and comfort food meet.
I love real hummous but hate that cardboard-like slop you so often get in the shops. It’s so easy to make the real thing and it literally costs pence. Unfortunately my magimix is on strike so I had to make this in the blender, which meant lots of pushing down and stirring but with velvety results. I love sun-dried tomatoes so threw in a few of those along with the tangy oil in the jar and needed to use up a glut of limes from Whitechapel Market, so added those to the mix. A touch of smoked paprika and lots of omega rich flax seed oil really pumped up the proverbial volume.
This was an accident that turned out to be truly delicious and turns a traditional side dish of dauphinoise into a more substantial one-dish comfort meal.
This is the simplest soup ever. Add whatever vegetables you have knocking around, I find carrots, spinach and mushrooms work well. The only essentials are seaweed and the spring onion. I like to have this for breakfast with a fruit salad, or if I’m feeling particularly virtuous for supper with steamed brown rice, furikake and a tamagoyaki omelette. Although it’s not strictly authentic, I find a drop of rice vinegar adds the most delicious tang to to the salty broth. The miso paste and dashi can be bought online or from Chinese and Japanese food shops and once you have them they last for ages so it’s well worth investing in decent quality miso, i.e. with a minimum of ingredients. The one in my fridge only contains rice, salt and soyabeans.Read the rest of this entry »
Whenever I was ill as a child my mother would make me a big steaming bowl of this. She would also inexplicably give me Lucozade, but it was the 80′s I suppose. Sometimes I find myself craving this spicy, tangy broth. Adding soaked mung beans makes for a more substantial dish.
This is my favourite way to eat tofu. Fried until golden and then dipped in a tangy ginger-soy sauce with fresh grated daikon/mooli/Asian radish, it’s really easy to make. You can buy blocks of cotton tofu for around £1.50 in most Oriental supermarkets, and if you have this with some salad and rice it works out to be fairly cheap. Make sure you use fresh soft tofu and try to get it as dry as possible before coating in the flour.Read the rest of this entry »