There’s been a lot of focus on Asian flavours in my kitchen lately – now that Spring has arrived I’m craving lighter, zingier food so I’m stocking up on citrus fruits, chillis and lots of fresh vegetables.
My two favourite Asian shops are the Asia Market in Ballymount and the Eurasia store in Fonthill – as those of you who come to my classes are well aware! Both are like Aladdin’s Caves full of wonderful and exotic ingredients – and I have to admit a number of which I have no idea what to do with – I would love someone to take me on a tour and explain how to use these ingredients. I regularly buy something which necessitates a google search before I can use it ! (hints on using dried Japanese plums welcome!)
You know that feeling – you’ve been out all day, you’re tired and hungry and you want dinner. NOW.
We’re not big takeaway fans here but I will admit I came very close to picking up the phone and ordering one last night.
Thankfully I hesitated and did a quick audit of what we had on hand. The situation was much better than feared. Fresh haddock in the fridge, avocados and tomatoes in the vegetable basket , taco shells in the pantry.
The result – fast fish tacos for supper – on the table in 10 minutes, Jamie Oliver would be proud of me! Continue reading →
Many Christmases ago a friend gave me a Rose Elliot vegetarian cookbook. It was in constant use for a few years with a mixed score of successes and failures. Some recipes like her vegetarian style chilli are still firm favourites. Others such as Hot Stuffed Avocados have been long sentenced to the ‘never to be attempted again pile’ 😉
A few years ago I was watching ‘Come Dine with Me’ (don’t judge me!) and was very taken by a vegetarian paté cooked by one of the contestants. On further research I discovered it was a Rose Elliot recipe which has made it the favourites pile and has been devoured by vegetarians and carnivores alike ! The original name of ‘lentil paté’ tends make people think of dark brown, unappetising sludge so I simplified it!
Today is National Potato Day so it’s only right to celebrate our most famous vegetable !
There are so many ways to cook our national treasure but as I’m still trying to keep the summer memories alive I’m adding a Spanish twist to tonight’s dish. This dish will be perfect both as an accompaniment to some thing like a roast chicken breast or served as part of tapas selection.
I’ve tried a few different recipes for Patatas Bravas – you know the tasty potatoes in tomato sauce you get in Tapas Bars – and I always come back to Simon Rimmer’s version. He slow roasts the potatoes with chilli rather than the traditional method of deep frying the potatoes and then adding the sauce so it’s a healthier option. I’ve tweaked it to my taste and I hope you like it ! Continue reading →
Any caterer will tell you that one of the biggest tasks we face after any job is the wash up. I have some (not so good!) memories of trying to wash plates out the back of a wedding marquee using hot water drained off the potatoes – I kid you not. I hasten to add this was not in Hey Pesto! – we prefer indoor sinks and dishwashers!
As regular readers will know I love to cook – both in my catering kitchen and my house kitchen – and I have a tendency to use a lot of dishes and pots. Unfortunately I don’t always have an assistant to wash up after me so my dishwasher is a very essential piece of kit. Continue reading →