Archives for the month of: February, 2015

I’d already made a delicious crispy tofu stir fry this week and needed a way to use up my leftover Cauldron tofu taking up room in the fridge. It’s so high maintenance – keep it in water and change it each day. Effort! Anyway I made these patties to have for lunch.

1) prepare the tofu: cover in kitchen roll and place between 2 chopping boards with tins on top to squeeze out all the water. Takes about 20 min.

2) in that time, peel, chop, boil and mash 2 small sweet potatoes. (I had two 1cm thick slithers of tofu leftover to give an idea of quanitity).

3) crumble the tofu into a bowl and add the sweet potato. Shake over some chill flakes (obv use fresh if you have fresh, I never do) and salt and pepper.

4) shake over some breadcrumbs and mix everything together.

5) form into 4 patties and fry, or oven bake.

Enjoy hot or cold. I had mine cold on a bed of spinach for extra crunch. Yum. They’d taste great done on a bbq and put in a bun I reckon.

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Is there a better flavour combo than chorizo and cod?!

1) fry off a chopped red onion in a cast iron pan on the hob.

2) add chopped chorizo and fry off with the onion.

3) Add a chopped red pepper, a chopped carrot and a crushed garlic clove.

4) Add a drained tin of chickpeas and a tin of chopped tomatoes. Add a shake of smoked paprika.

5) pop casserole lid on and place in the oven at 190 degrees C.

6) after 15 mins pop a frozen cod fillet on top of the stew. I only added one because I’m cooking for one! I’ll have the leftovers and cook another cod fillet tomorrow.

7) 20 mins later it should all be done!

Huge thanks to the Netherton Foundry and Robert Dyas for my Twitter prize of this beautiful cast iron casserole. It is gorgeous, big, well made, sturdy and I still can’t believe I won it. I was so excited to cook with it that I took a selfie to document the moment.

In order to cheer up my poorly other half I thought I’d incorporate his favourite biscuit into a muffin. I may have eaten one fresh out the oven for quality control purposes. I can confirm: they’re all good.

I used this recipe as guideline, changed it all to cups and halved the ingredients to yield 5 muffins.

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.

1) in a bowl, cream together 1/3 cup of softened butter and 1/3 cup of caster sugar.

2) sift over just under 1/2 cup of self raising flour and 1 dessert spoon of cocoa powder.

3) add one beaten egg, 1 teaspoon of milk and a drop of vanilla extract.

4) whizz together with an electric mixer.

5) bash up 5 oreo cookies and mix in the batter.

6) spoon batter into cake cakes, fill them just over halfway so they rise up.

7) oven for 25 minutes.

Try desperately hard not to eat them before giving them as a get well present.

I had to share this with you all because it tasted so good and was so incredibly simple. I used up almost a whole pot of tofu in last night’s stir fry and planned to have the leftovers in pitta for lunch today. They weren’t quite as crispy after a day but the flavour was fabulous.

1) grate up some carrot.

2) tuppaware up the tofu, carrot and spinach leaves.

3) heat the pitta bread in the microwave.

4) I added a bit of soy sauce to the pitta bread, but up to you!

Assemble, instagram, dive in!

I received a Cauldron voucher with my Tesco clubcard vouchers and decided to try out some tofu. I had some cracking crispy tofu at a dim sum place over in Shoreditch and thought I’d have a go at replicating it.

0.5) boil up a pan of brown rice. (1/2 cup rice to 1 cup water, boil then simmer with a lid on for 20 mins)

1) prepare the tofu how it says to in this very useful video on the Couldron website – wrap in kitchen roll and press with a board for 20 mins.

2) chop up the tofu and roll in beaten egg.

3) place some flour on a plate and mix with Chinese 5 spice and chilli flakes. Roll the eggy tofu in the mix and shallow fry.

4) chop up 1/2 red onion, 1 small carrot and a few broccoli florets.

5) remove tofu from frying pan and mop up excess oil with some kitchen roll. Add onion and carrot to the pan and fry. Add brocolli to boiling water.

6) in a bowl mix up 2 tbsp soy sauce, 1/2 tsp mince ginger, 1 small garlic glove and a shake of chill flakes.

7) put cooked rice in the pan with the onion and carrot in; add the soy sauce mix, finally add the boiled broccoli.

Pop all in a bowl and gobble it up! Yum.

So this was a bit of an experiment. It was actually delicious. I learned 2 things from this experiment though – use 2 courgettes and really squeeze the moisture out!

1) preheat oven to 220 degrees c.

2) grate 2 courgettes and squeeze out all the water. Mix in a grated 1 inch cube of cheddar and 1 beaten egg.

3) spread onto a baking sheet and oven for 15-20 mins.

4) add a topping of your choice – I mixed tomato puree with tomato ketchup and added spinach and a crumbling of feta.

Despite the thinness and slightly soggy middle, it really did taste lovely, like a big courgettey pancake.

Made these in 30 mins before my hockey meet this morning. Delicious and a nice change to blueberry. The method below yielded 8 juicy muffins.

0.5) preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.

1) mix wet ingredients in a bowl: 1 beaten egg, 2 pots of Activia Peach yoghurt (the small ones), 2 tablespoons of melted butter.

2) mix dry ingredients in a separate bowl: 1 cup oats, 1 cup plain flour, 1/3 cup of caster sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda.

3) Add wet to dry and mix. Spoon plenty of batter into cake cases, oven for 20-25 minutes.

Peachy!

This was actually a super speedy dinner! Got the ingredients for the pesto from this recipe but didn’t follow it directly.

1) boil the kettle and get the spaghetti going in a pan on the hob.

2) in a food processor blend: 2 big handfuls of washed spinach, handful of walnuts, some good grates of parmesan, a small clove of garlic. Add olive oil as its whirring until it’s at your desired consistency.

3) drain spaghetti and mix in the pesto whilst on a low heat.

4) in a separate pan, boil water, add a drop of vinegar and use a teaspoon to swirl in a circle. Crack an egg into a ramekin and add to the swirling water. Leave for a min and remove any whispy bits with a slotted spoon. Cook for 1 more min depending on how you like your egg.

5) Plate up and keep the rest of your pesto for another day. Apparently it keeps for a quite a while in the fridge. Winner!

Remember what I said yesterday about thinking Valentine’s Day was pants? I take it back, this was the best V-day prez ever. I’m no expert on sushi now (although I’ve learnt it means ‘sour tasting’ and sashimi means ‘raw meat’), but I’m confident I could give it a fair crack at home. The class at Yo Sushi was quite long, but very enjoyable, and to finish with the two boxes above was really satisfying.

Here are some of the tips I picked up last night:

  • wear plastic gloves and rub mayonnaise or oil into them, this stops the rice sticking to them.
  • use short grain rice, long grain like basmati will not work.
  • cover your sushi mat in cling film.
  • there’s 18g of rice in a ngiri (eg pop a bit of salmon on top and you’ve got salmon ngiri!).
  • if you’re using avacado, squirt on some mayo to stop it browning.
  • if you’re making an ‘iso’ (rice on the outside) there should be rice covering all the edges of the seaweed except a 1cm strip at the top.
  • slice sushi with a very sharp and wet knife.
  • sushi is way overpriced – learn to make your own!

I’ve got a whirlwind of ideas for what to make now I’ve got my rolling mat and basic sushi booklet, I’m planning a sushi party for my birthday so I can show off to my chums. Luckily that’s July, so I’ve got 5 months to hone my skills!

I think Valentine’s Day is pants. Anyway, instead of the Rolex I was obviously going to buy my boyfriend for this fake holiday, I baked some biscuits. My mum once told me the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Very wise. I used this basic BBC Good food cookie recipe and the idea of using pomegranate from this Great British Chefs recipe. My other half seemed more excited by the cartoon goat on my tuppaware box than the biscuits themselves, but they were made with love! I halved the GF recipe and made 10 cookies.

Pre heat oven to 170 degrees C.

1) Cream together 3/4 cup of butter and 1/3 cup of sugar.

2) Separate an egg yolk and add to the mix.

3) Sift over 1 cup of plain flour, mix and form a dough.

4) Place on baking parchment on a baking tray in small balls and flatten, then dot with pomegranate seeds.

5) Bake from 15 mins.

I set some of the dough aside to experiment with some cocoa powder and just folded it in to make these chocolate swirly biscuits. These were a V-day prez to myself…