December 14, 2014 §
Sorry for the delay in publishing – we were away for the weekend. It’s the time of year for lists and ‘best ofs’, so I’ve been looking at a few best books of the year posts, and also bookmarking recipes to make over Christmas.
December 5, 2014 §
Last weekend featured some cooking to last through the week – a slow-cooked beef shin ragu, a chicken curry with lentils, and working on the Justin Gellatly sourdough recipe (which was baked on Monday). Very pleased to have reactivated my elderly, frozen sourdough starter, and hoping that I can keep it going with some more loaves through December.
- FT Weekend food issue – every quarter, the FT dedicates their very good weekend magazine to food. Last weekend’s included an excellent article by Polly Russell on historic Christmas food, with Ivan Day, the food historian who sometimes features on The Great British Bake Off.
- Another great piece on historic Christmas food was the recent Food Programme on Radio 4, featuring Diana Henry and Bea Wilson making fig and pomegranate jam, and a history of Turkish Delight.
- If these apple and marmalade hotcakes are any indication, this new cookbook all about Marmalade will be very good.
- I made the Justin Gellatly sourdough recipe from Bread, Cake, Doughnut, Pudding, but I’m also planning to try the Tartine Bread and this San Joaquin sourdough recommended by a friend.
November 28, 2014 §
Food reading has been a bit thin on the ground this week – a combination of Thanksgiving recipes everywhere and having my head buried in ‘Sealed with a Christmas Kiss‘ and ‘Gone Girl’ on Kindle. About the only cooking I’ve done is to revive my (elderly) frozen sourdough starter. The good news is that it is alive…
November 21, 2014 §
This week has been full of cooking prepared in advance: some very unsuccessful braised beef that was supposed to be Sunday dinner, and ended up being eaten on Monday; following Sassy Radish to combine previously frozen lentils, previously washed and shredded kale with a couple of sausages to make a super-quick dinner; parsnip risotto from this month’s Delicious, prepared halfway (in the Thermomix) and in the fridge, ready for dinner tonight (with more sausages); and a batch of April Bloomfield’s porridge, also made in the Thermomix last night, and reheated for dinner this morning. Oh, and brownies with marmalade, and, inspired by a friend who is baking crazy amounts of bread, I’m attempting to revive my frozen sourdough starter. Fingers crossed…
November 14, 2014 §
The online debate on home cooking, and feeling obligated to do it, continues with excellent pieces from Luisa (Wednesday Chef) and Olga (Sassy Radish). I also thought this post from Jenny at Dinner: A Love Story about lacking confidence in the kitchen was part of the same theme. And Jay Rayner is an enthusiastic advocate for getting in the kitchen to please yourself.
I am definitely cooking differently with a child, especially now she’s weaning. To get dinner on the table while minding her through the grumpy late afternoon, I mostly rely on something that can be prepared earlier in the day, or something from the freezer than can be easily reheated. The oven is a better option than the stove, especially because I can set it to turn on and off by itself on a timer – useful if I’m trapped under a sleeping baby when something should come out of the oven. I also lean on prepared food a fair bit – some prepared meals like lasagne and fish pie, good bought curry sauces, supermarket pizzas. I’m learning to dial down my ambitions – better to eat something simple or bought than to make something entirely homemade, but not get to eat until 9pm.
Some seasonal recipes to try out:
November 7, 2014 §
The tea loaf love continues. The one above is Justin Gellatly’s version from ‘Bread, Cake, Doughnut, Pudding‘. It uses Earl grey tea and lemon zest and is beautifully fragrant as a result.
October 31, 2014 §
Hard to believe it’s the end of October – today was warm and sunny: it could have been June. Still, there are leaves on the ground, and soups and stews are starting to become a more regular feature of the menu.