Saturday 29 October 2011

Sins of the Flesh

Salmon, liberally sprinkled with the beautiful 'Carnal Sin', roasted and served with balsamic courgette, garlic, soya beans and PSB.

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Wednesday 26 October 2011

Pretty Colours

Look at my beautiful beetroot - candy and golden.

I roasted it with garlic and ate it with soft boiled duck eggs.

Delicious and also very pretty.

Freezer Clearing 1

Last night, I went through and catalogued what was in my freezer.
Amongst other things, I found some bits of foie gras, some ostrich chunks, two pigs trotters and a couple of malteaster bunnies.
And stock. Lots of stock.

In order to begin the cleansing process, we liberated and ate a frozen trout.

We cooked him in the oven in a parcel with dill and lemon and ate him with spaghetti squash and stirfried chilli chard.

And I actually threw out some of the stock.

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Monday 24 October 2011

Veggie Monday

Spicey chickpeas with spinach and stuff.

And, in case you missed it yesterday, look! I snuggled an owl :-)

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Sunday 23 October 2011

Something Fishy (and a LOT of photographs)

Last week, I had a work time daydream about fish pie.
I don't know where it came from, but I got all obsessed with it and, in the end, gave in to Destiny and asked the lovely elves at Hubbub to bring me some tasty fishes.

So, here goes...

The ingredients (excluding flour and butter, which I forgot to parade).

Somebody was very interested in all the fish.

I laboriously peeled the prawns

And hacked up the squid

And then I fried them briefly in a bit of olive oil.

I chopped up the shallots and garlic

And added them to some milk and fish stock along with a couple of bay leaves, seasoned and brought to the boil.

I poached my cod (it was supposed to be pollack, but they had run out) and (gorgeous) smoked haddock fillets in the simmering mix for a few minutes and then took them out and flaked them.
I don't seem to have photographed this bit - maybe it didn't look nice - but I also removed the onion and garlic bits (mostly) and decanted the liquid into a measuring jug.

At this point, I required some rejuvenating sherry. Obviously.

I wiped the pan clean and stuck a lump of butter in it to melt

And then chucked in some flour to make a roux, which I cooked for ten minutes or so to get rid of the floury taste.

I added the stock/milk back really gradually, whisking it in all the time. I cooked gently for another ten minutes or so, and then seasoned and stirred in some mustard.

OK everyone - stick with me - we're nearly done.

Some chives and dill seemed seafood appropriate.

The herbs, various fish bits and shallots garlic all went into an oven dish (well, two, in fact, as it turned out there was quite a lot of it) and got all mixed up.

I splodged the b├ęchamel on top and mixed it in a bit.

In the background of all of this, I had been cunningly "baking" some potatoes in the microwave.
When they were cooked and cool, I emptied them into a bowl and "mashed" with my hands.
You could, of course, boil and mash them in the usual manner, but my way is far lazier and also means that you don't have to add lots of butter and things. Cunning, no?

I squidged handfuls of potato into patty shapes and put them on top of the fish mixture, covering it totally. I forked the tops to ensure sufficient scrunchy bits, before sticking them in the oven (180 - 200) for 40 mins or so.
And this is how they look.

Tragically, I'm unable to report back on what they taste like yet, as I have to save them for tomorrow.
However, having been nibbling the component parts all day, I'm not too worried :-)
I intend to eat them with tasty greens and lashings of ketchup/sweet chilli sauce.

NB: I'd like to have put a layer of boiled egg slices in on top of the fish and under the b├ęchamel, but husband is not a fan of eggs. Weird, I know. He's fairly normal apart from that.

Saturday 22 October 2011

Wascally Wabbit

The nice people at Abel and Cole brought me a rabbit this week.

I had lots of thoughts about what might be the best thing to do with him (pie, KFR, curry etc) but in the end, plumped for the hearty (and also lazy) option of Rabbit Stew.

Here is a selection of my ingredients.

There were also streaky bacon (husband was buying this at the time of photographing), flour, seasonings and a tub of unidentified (but almost certainly chicken. Or lamb. Or grouse) stock from the freezer (must devise labelling system).
The Perrier was a necessary chefly privilege.

I peeled and chopped the garlic, onion and purple purple carrots (see how pretty!)

and flung them into a (as is traditional, slightly too small for the job) casserole thingy, where they fried until they were cookedish and a bit caramelly, at which point I decanted them onto a plate.

I floured the (ready jointed) rabbit bits with well seasoned flour. I left the bones in. As mentioned above I am lazy.
The rabbity bits browned in the pan, but remained tragically unphotographed.

When they were brownish, I took them out, deglazed the pan with a bit of open-white-wine-from-the-fridge, chucked everything back into the pan and covered with stock. And, at the last minute, an enormous bayleaf.
I brought it all to the boil on the hob and then stuck it in the oven (at about 120, I think) for a couple of hours.

When it came out, I didn't reduce down the sauce on the hob, but I probably should have (and, indeed, have done so with the leftovers).

We ate it with a pretty green cauliflower and husband had rice.

V good. Gamey. Whole flat now stinks of rabbits and cats are going a bit mad.

Thursday 20 October 2011

Bonus Dinner

Today I have had a Day Off.
I meant to do a lot of useful things, but it was such a nice day that, instead, we went for a big walk along the river and ended up going on the London Eye and having early dinner at Terroirs.

Husband on the London Eye

Pretty sunset

Smoked eel, horseradish and beetroot.

Delicious anchovy mountain.

Steak tartare.

Snails and girolles.

And cheese.

All washed down with a Lot of Wine.

Yum. I love Terroirs :-)

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Wednesday 19 October 2011


Two kinds of roasted squash and some eggses. Oh, and some tasty mushrooms.

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Monday 17 October 2011

Kind of Jerky

Husband cooked for me this evening (isn't he awesome?)

Chicken legs and thighs covered with so called International Jerk powder...
Husband deems it not so good (certainly not so spicyhot) as the cheap stuff in jars from the little shops hereabouts. I'm inclined to agree. Maybe that's the international aspect?

Served with cauliflower and PSB.
And mayo and sweet chilli sauce, obviously.

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Thursday 13 October 2011


Lunch today - automatic packed lunch :-)

I am utterly stuffed...

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Wednesday 12 October 2011

Bonus Evening

I left work early today, as I had an appointment at 6.30. However, at about 6.27, I got a cancellation text, so I moseyed on home to take advantage of my Extra Bonus Hour :-)

When I got there, I discovered this parcel drop of loveliness from the nice people at Hubbub, who still had time to bring me tasty things in spite of the fact that they must all have been knackered after their lovely East London launch party last night...

So many good treats :-)

And just LOOK at the size of the bread! It's in a proper giant flour sack - I should have put something else in the picture for scale. It's insane. I am trying to decide where to hide it from husband so that it's not all gone (leaving him weeping in corner) by the morning.

We celebrated the haul by eating mussels and (slightly old, but still good) broccoli. Mopped up, naturally, with the bread.

And, just for something different, here is a bit of the caramel shortbread that I made last night (in the Twitter style of the Great British Bake Off, but less competently and competitively).

Tub O'Lunch

Good lunch skills, no?

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Tuesday 11 October 2011


Some things what I have eaten (and drinked) in the last week or so...

Andre Beaufort champagne. One of our top picks from a tasting at the Sampler

Tomatoey chorizo thing with butternut squash and many many garlics

Chicken livers with more chorizo and onions and many delicious vegetables. Husband made this one evening when I was home late from work. He is awesome.

Some lovely sardines. Al forno.

And some caramel shortbread, what I have made tonight with the assistance of Twitter...

Caramel setting.

Chocolate melting.

And the completed article.
I'll slice it in the morning. And try to persuade some victims to eat it.