I feel like the whole of January and some of February I was full of the miseries of not just one, but two colds! So I’m not going to say happy new year at this point because here we are in March and, frankly, it would just be embarrassing! So, while I was lying on the sofa, nicely tucked up with my blanket to keep me and my cold cosy, I put on an episode of Saturday Kitchen. I fully expected to have a nice snooze but Tonia Buxton kept me awake making her lamb koftas with a spicy tahini dip!
They are really easy to make and I have now made them twice. The first time I overcooked them – I followed Tonia’s timings but baked them in the Aga, so I only have myself to blame for not checking them earlier! They were only a little bit overdone – thankfully! Second time around, they were perfectly cooked. The dip was delicious but very garlicky so I reduced the number of cloves from four to one and also felt that it didn’t require the juice from two lemons, one was plenty. It’s a really good dish to have if you’re trying to avoid bread as they’re served in lovely little gem lettuce leaves. We also had roasted sweet potato as there was some leftover from making the koftas. (Actually my sweet potato was enormous!) They also freeze beautifully and defrost fairly quickly, which is useful to know.
I also have a point to note from making/freezing the lamb sausage rolls in my previous post. The first time I made them I cooked them then froze them and consequently when I defrosted/reheated them, they were a little dry. The second time I made them I froze them raw. This is definitely the way to go as they turned out brilliantly and were not dried out in the slightest. I hope you give the sausage rolls or the koftas – or both – a try, as they’re both very tasty.
Posted in AGA cooking, mains
I know it’s been a while, so let’s hope you’ve missed me and I’ll move swiftly on!
I recently lent the Bourke Street Bakery bread book to a friend and after she returned it I sat down and began flicking through it, as you do. The recipe for lamb, harissa and almond sausage rolls caught my eye BUT, this being the weekend before Christmas when I have lists on my lists, I thought I’d take a few shortcuts. The recipe includes a list of ingredients for making your own harissa and also making your own puff pastry but neither of these things were going to happen in my kitchen today so I bought a jar of Belazu Rose Harissa and some ready rolled puff pastry. I know, shame on me!
I adapted the recipe a bit so here’s what you need
150g Belazu Rose Harissa
2 packs all butter, ready rolled puff pastry from the chiller section in the supermarket
500g minced lamb
an egg for the egg wash
salt and pepper
Poppy seeds for sprinkling over the sausage rolls
Mix the minced lamb, harissa, couscous, currants, salt and pepper together well and divide into two equal (ish) pieces and roll each one into a sausage shape. Take the pastry out of the packaging and place on some non-stick baking parchment. Then place one of the sausages along the middle of the pastry, lengthwise. Brush the long edge nearest you with egg wash and fold the other edge over to seal, flattening the sausage a bit as you do so. Repeat with the other bit of pastry and sausage. Trim the long edge and mark nicely with a fork. Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with poppy seeds. Divide each one into five (or 4 if you like them a bit bigger) and bake on a baking tray in the centre of the hot oven of a two oven Aga for about half an hour – you might need to use the cold shelf after about twenty minutes to stop them from becoming too brown (or at 350/375 degrees F approximately until filling is cooked right through). Leave on a rack to cool. I’m sure you’ve noticed there are no almonds in mine but only because I didn’t have any blanched ones. I think they would be a great addition.
I tasted one when they were cool enough and boy was it good! I bought extra good lamb, minced specially for me at the butcher and it had a really nice texture. A couple more have disappeared from the rack as we both had them for lunch but the rest are going into the freezer so there will be a wee snacklet for someone over the festive period! 😇
I’d like to wish everyone a very merry Christmas and a happy, healthy 2017!
Looking forward to seeing you next year!
Firstly I should tell you this is one of those non-food posts which pop up every now and then on my blog. I follow (and love) the blog En Brogue written by fashion editor Hannah Rochell. If you haven’t gathered by the title, it’s all about shoes. Flat ones. And she’s written a book about them too. I always read with envy as I too love shoes and more often than not these days can be found wearing my ‘flatties’. I do own heels but they don’t come out of their boxes very much. The reason I’m telling you all this is because this week she’s written a post about socks, which I also happen to love. (In fact, I was going to write about my Christmas socks but the time came and went and it doesn’t feel quite right now it’s March!)
I’m going to sidestep a little and tell you I’m reading a book called The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying by Marie Kondo because sadly I’m not one of the tidiest of people on the planet but I’d like to be. Loads of very useful information in the book including a section about how to store socks. No turning them inside out in a pair. Folding is the thing to do. Mmmmm. I suspect this might entail ironing them. This might be a step too far but I’m always open to new ideas. So when Hannah’s most recent post dropped into my mailbox I thought there might just be something to this sock folding lark. Fast forward to today …
I am truly impressed. Not only can I see all my socks at a glance, I no longer have to wade through a double layer of them – real timesaver when I’m trying to co-ordinate myself in the morning! I took the opportunity to have a bit of a clear out too. I confess I haven’t quite finished Marie Kondo’s book (hence the untidy sock drawer) but
fully intend will try to follow her method to ensure I become a much tidier person. And just so you know, I didn’t have to iron them. Phew!
I have a copy of the Nopi cookbook by Yotam Ottolenghi and Ramael Scully which has been read cover to cover but until today, I hadn’t actually made anything from it. I know, naughty me! Well, I managed to get some burrata (think mozzarella but more creamy!) and it is the season for blood oranges so I thought I’d try ‘burrata with blood orange, coriander seeds and lavender oil’.
This is a very simple dish really but it is the combination of flavours that just lifts it to another realm. I feel sure that Nopi must be supplied with smaller balls of burrata than the one I purchased, because mine was far too much for one! Even a greedy one like me! The oranges are sliced horizontally rather than segmented and placed on the plate with the burrata. The dressing – made from olive oil, honey, garlic, corianders seeds and salt – is then drizzled over the cheese. Scatter some basil over the top and you’re done. It looks beautiful!
I’m sure you’ve noticed something missing in my version … yep, the lavender. I’m afraid I didn’t have any and not sure how keen I am to eat it as I’m not keen on lavender scented body products. That said, now I’ve tasted the dish, I might give it a whirl next time. I left the burrito whole for the photo but when I cut into it to save some for lunch tomorrow, it oozed its creamy middle all over the plate! I don’t know how but I did still manage to restrain myself and just eat half! I can understand why customers go to Nopi just for this!
roll on tomorrow for the leftovers …
This gallery contains 2 photos.
A couple of weeks ago in the guardian’s Saturday Magazine, Yotam Ottolenghi gave us a recipe using padrón peppers. I have eaten these in Tenerife but not cooked like this! Fast forward a week or so to when I was looking for inspiration … Continue reading
I love coffee. Coffee chocolates, coffee ice cream and up there at the top is, of course, my morning coffee. Heaven help you if you encounter me before I’ve had it. You have been warned! Only joking. Well, maybe not …… 😄!
Last week I came across recipes for coffee cake in three different locations on the same day and thought someone must be trying to tell me something. I decided to make the one baked by Kath over at The Ordinary Cook. She weighs her eggs (in the shells) which is something new to me, then weighs the flour, butter and sugar to the same weight. Clever! My eggs weighed quite a bit more than Kath’s so I used two 23cm sandwich tins (9 inch for those who don’t work in metric). I was also rushing a bit as I had a pile of ironing to do so I opted for the all-in-one method for mixing. (Actually, I put everything in the mixing bowl then read the method – oops!). I baked them at 150°C in my fan oven (which runs quite hot) for 25-30 mins and they looked pretty good when they came out of the oven. The cakes are sandwiched together with a lovely coffee buttercream which isn’t too sweet and, if you have any left, spread it over the top. Thanks Kath – it’s very good – just the thing for a cold and miserable day. Or any day come to think of it. Who needs an excuse!
Posted in baking
Tagged baking, cake, coffee
fresh and tasty
The second day of the new year already! I really did mean to post this yesterday but didn’t quite get around to it. No I wasn’t partying, nor did I have a hangover. This year I was trying to get myself ready to face the year – you know, gather my thoughts, make resolutions (haha!) and generally get the house tidy after Christmas.
My first meal of the year (yesterday lunch) was delicious. The recipe I found in the donna hay magazine (oct/nov 2015) Issue 83 – corn, kale and coriander fritters with crispy bacon. I’ve actually made it a couple of times now as it really is so good. Fritter batter made with greek yoghurt (0% fat for me), flour and eggs then sweetcorn, kale, fresh coriander and chilli stirred in along with some salt and pepper. I couldn’t get all the kale stirred into the batter so I served it on the side with some sweet tomato and chilli chutney. It even sounds healthy! I’ve had it with and without bacon and my preference would be for without, but that’s just me. This is my kind of food.
I hope all my meals are going to be as tasty as this one! Happy New Year!