Stage 1: Bring the stock to a simmer in a saucepan. Put the olive oil and butter in a separate large pan, add the onion and celery and cook very gently for about 15 minutes, without colouring, until soft. Add the rice (it will sizzle) and turn up the heat. Don't let the rice or veg catch on the bottom of the pan, so keep it moving.
Stage 2: Quickly pour in the vermouth or wine. You will smell the alcohol immediately, so keep stirring all the time until it has evaporated, leaving the rice with a lovely perfume.
Stage 3: Add the stock to the rice a ladle at a time, stirring and waiting until it has been fully absorbed before adding the next. Turn the heat down to low so the rice doesn't cook too quickly, otherwise the outside of each grain will be stodgy and the inside hard and nutty (you don't want to cook it too slowly either, or it will turn into rice pudding!) and continue to add ladlefuls of stock until it has all be absorbed. This should take about 14 to 15 minutes and give you rice that is beginning to soften but is still a little al dente. Put to one side.
Now put a large saucepan on a medium to high heat and pour in half the stock, followed by all your risotto base and the finely sliced asparagus stalks and the tips. Stirring all the time, gently bring to the boil, then turn the heat down and simmer until almost all the stock has been absorbed. Add the rest of the stock a ladleful at a time until the rice and asparagus are cooked. You might not need all your stock. Be careful not to overcook the rice - check it throughout cooking to make sure it's a pleasure to eat. It should hold its shape but be soft, creamy and oozy, and the overall texture should be slightly looser than you think you want it.
Turn off the heat, beat in your butter and Parmesan, mint, almost all the lemon zest and all the juice. Check the seasoning and add salt and pepper if needed. Put a lid on the pan and leave the risotto to rest for a minute. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil, a scattering of lemon zest and a block of Parmesan on the table.
at 10:54 PM
Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4. Beat eggs with a little sea salt and black pepper. Heat oil and butter in a 19cm oven-proof frying pan or cast-iron dish over a medium heat and sauté asparagus for 5 minutes. Add eggs, cook for 3 minutes then bake for 15–20 minutes until golden and fluffy. Serve hot or cold, with a drizzle of hot sauce.
at 10:52 PM
In an appropriately sized large pan, slowly fry your onion and leek with around 5 tablespoons of olive oil for 5 minutes until soft and tender. With a teaspoon, remove and discard the fluffy tasteless core from the courgettes and grate the rest into the pan. Chop the potatoes into rough 2cm/1 inch dice and add to the pan. Give everything a good stir and then add the anchovies. Turn the heat up and add the white wine. Allow to cook down by half before adding your milk and stock. Bring to the boil and simmer for half an hour until the potatoes are tender. At this point add your cod and simmer for a further 15 minutes until the flesh flakes away − feel free to stir and break up the fish, but it's quite nice to leave some big chunks as well. Season carefully to taste. Divide between your bowls, and serve with a small handful of parsley and spring onion dressed with a little olive oil and lemon juice.
Try this: Sprinkle a little orange zest over the parsley and spring onion. It really works with the cod.
at 9:35 AM
Squeeze the grapefruit juice and pour into a sandwich bag with the fish sauce. Add the piece of tuna. Tie up the bag, squeezing out most of the air so the tuna is completely covered in the juice. Leave for 40 minutes, after which time the outside of the tuna will be pale and ‘cooked’. Now carefully pour the grapefruit juice from the bag into a bowl, dry off the tuna and put to one side.
For the dressing, mix the sesame oil, olive oil and chillies into the grapefruit juice. Use as much chilli as you like, and season to taste. Tear off a good handful of coriander and mint from the bunches and put to one side to use for garnish later. Finely chop the remaining herbs and really pat these around the tuna to encrust it. Wrap in clingfilm and place in the fridge until needed.
Boil the noodles for 1 minute until they are slightly flexible, drain and allow to steam dry and cool. Add a little olive oil to a hot non-stick pan, add your noodles and leave them until they are nice and crisp on one side. Now flip them over and do the same on the other side – it doesn't matter if some stick to the pan, just scrape them up and turn them over. Divide the crispy noodles between 4 plates. Slice your tuna up about 0.5cm/¼ inch thick – in Japan it's a sign of generosity to have nice thick slices of tuna, but I like them a little thinner as they are more delicate in the mouth.
Place the tuna on the noodles, sprinkle over the torn-up herbs that you put to one side earlier, sprinkle with the spring onions and then drizzle a couple of spoonfuls of the dressing over the tuna. Before your eyes you will see the cut sides of the slices of fish begin to change colour and ‘cook’. Serve straight away.
at 9:28 AM
Parmesan cheese may seem a little unusual in this recipe, but it really gives the burgers a great flavour – give it a bash.
Grind up the red chilli in a pestle and mortar, and mix it in a bowl with the onion, tarragon, egg, breadcrumbs, mustard, Parmesan, nutmeg and beef. Shape into four patties and refrigerate for half an hour or so to give them a chance to firm up slightly.
When you're ready to cook the burgers, get a frying or griddle pan nice and hot. Brush the pan with a little oil, season the burgers generously with salt and pepper, and cook them for 10 minutes, turning them carefully every minute or so, until they're nice and pink and juicy, or longer if you like them well done. Make sure they don't break up as you turn them.
Meanwhile, roughly chop the lettuce, tomato and cucumber, mix together and set aside. Once the burgers are cooked, split the rolls into two and toast them quickly on the griddle or in a toaster. Sandwich the cooked 'Elvis' burger between the toasted rolls and serve them on individual plates with the gherkins and some of the chopped salad (add a little extra virgin olive oil or dressing if you like) on the side.
at 11:17 PM
First of all you need to chop the pumpkin flesh into 2inch pieces. To make your fragrant soup base, first chop, then whiz or bash up the following in your food processor or pestle and mortar until you have a pulpy mix: the lime leaves, chillies, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, coriander stalks, five-spice and cumin. Remove any stringy bits that may remain in the pulp. Put this fragrant mixture into a high-sided pan with a little oil and your finely sliced onion and cook gently for about 10 minutes to release the flavours.
Add the pumpkin and the stock to the pan. Stir around, scraping all the goodness off the bottom of the pan. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer with the lid on for about 15 minutes until the pumpkin is soft. At this point, add the rice and give it a really good stir. Some of the pumpkin will begin to mush up, but you'll also have some chunks. Continue to simmer with the lid on until the rice is cooked, then off comes the lid. Add the coconut milk, stir again, taste and season carefully with salt and pepper. To give it a bit of sharpness add the lime juice – the amount will depend on how juicy your limes are, but the idea is to give the soup a little twang.
Serve the soup in warmed bowls or pour it back into the pumpkin shell. If you're going to do this, put the pumpkin shell into the oven to warm it through first. It's a great show-stopper for dinner parties. Finish sprinkled with the coriander leaves, or some extra sliced fresh chilli, or grate over some fresh coconut if you have it.
PS: If you have a Magimix food processor you can put it to good use for this recipe! If you don't have one then your pestle and mortar will come in handy instead.
at 11:14 PM
Once you’ve got the hang of that, you can have a go at flavouring it - any flavouring you boil with the rice will infuse it with wonderful fragrances and flavours. So try boiling things like fresh herbs, a cinnamon stick, a few cardamom pods, a strip of lemon zest or even a green tea bag in the water with the rice.
Doubling the amounts in the recipe will give you enough rice to serve 8-12 people.
• Put a large pan of salted water on a high heat and bring to the boil
• Rinse the rice in a colander under running water for about 1 minute, or until the water runs clear (this will stop the grains sticking together later)
• Add your rice to the boiling water and wait for the grains to start dancing around
• From that point, boil for 5 minutes
• Drain the rice in a colander
• Pour 2.5cm of water into the pan, put it back on the heat and bring it to the boil again, then turn down to a simmer
• Cover the rice in the colander with foil or a lid
• Place the colander on top of the pan of simmering water and let the rice steam over it for 8 to 10 minutes
• Remove from the heat and if you’re ready, serve immediately
• If not, leave the foil or lid on and put aside until ready to serve – it should stay warm for about 20 minutes
at 11:10 PM
Break the biscuits into small pieces directly into a large bowl. Add the pecans, pistachio nuts and cherries and mix together. Put the rest of the ingredients into a separate, heatproof bowl and put on a low heat over a pan of simmering water until the butter and chocolate have melted.
Combine the biscuit mix with the chocolate mixture. Line a 30 x 20 cm plastic container with clingfilm, leaving plenty of extra film at the edges to help turn the cake out later. Whack everything into the container, place in the fridge to firm up then turn out and cut into chunky slices.
This cake can be kept in an airtight container for a few days, and it actually improves in flavour!
at 11:50 PM
This really is one of my favourite soups. It's not too hot, but as you eat it you can pick out the individual flavours. And there's something about having rice in a soup that makes it really scrumptious.
Get yourself a big pan and heat up your oil, then add the mustard seeds, curry leaves, cumin seeds, garam masala, chilli powder and turmeric. Cook for a few minutes and you'll get the most amazing smells filling the room from all these spices. Then add the chillies, the ginger, the garlic and the onions. Continue cooking slowly until the garlic and onions are soft. Then add the rice and the water. Bring to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 15 minutes. Add your fish and the coconut milk with a pinch of salt. Put the lid on the pan and simmer for a further 10 minutes, then stir well to break up the pieces of fish. Taste and correct the seasoning with salt and pepper, then just before you serve it squeeze in the lime juice and stir in half the coriander. Serve in warmed bowls, sprinkle over some freshly grated coconut, if you have it, and rip over the rest of the coriander.
Put your chicken, carrot, celery and bacon in a large saucepan, cover with water and bring to the boil. Turn the heat down and simmer slowly for an hour and a quarter, skimming the white residue off the top every now and again. Add your rosemary sprigs, shitake mushrooms and sherry (if you are using it) for the last 10 minutes, then remove the chicken from the pan. It should be perfectly cooked, and will be great for salads or sandwiches or for tearing into slivers to put into the soup. Season the soup with salt and ladle it through a sieve into bowls, trying not to disrupt it too much as you want to keep it reasonably clear. Add the chicken slivers and a few mushrooms to each bowl and drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil. The finished thing should be a kinda clear consommé.
at 11:45 PM
First of all, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil, add the farfalle, and cook according to the packet instructions. Whisk the egg in a bowl with the cream, salt and pepper. Put your pancetta or bacon into a second pan and cook until crispy and golden.
When the farfalle is nearly cooked, add the peas for the last minute and a half. This way they will burst in your mouth and be lovely and sweet. When cooked, drain in a colander, saving a little of the cooking water. Add the pasta to the pancetta and stir in most of the mint, finely sliced - if the pan isn't big enough, mix it all together in a large warmed bowl.
Now you need to add the egg and cream mix to the pasta. What's important here is that you add it while the pasta is still hot. This way, the residual heat of the pasta will cook the eggs, but not so that they resemble scrambled eggs, as I've seen in some dodgy old restaurants on the motorway! The pasta will actually cook the egg enough to give you a silky smooth sauce. Toss together and loosen with a little of the reserved cooking water if necessary. Season with salt and pepper, sprinkle with the Parmesan and the rest of the mint leaves, and serve as soon as possible.
at 2:29 AM
Cook the linguine in a generous amount of boiling, salted water for about 12 minutes, then drain thoroughly and return to the saucepan. Meanwhile, beat the lemon juice and zest with the olive oil, then stir in the Parmesan – it’ll go thick and creamy. Season and add more lemon juice if needed. Add the lemon sauce to the linguine and shake the pan to coat each strand of pasta with the sauce (the Parmesan will melt when mixed with the pasta). Finish by stirring in the chopped basil and the rocket.
at 2:26 AM
In a large bowl, scrunch the tomatoes with your hands to slightly mush them. Mix in the olives, garlic and vinegar. Tear in the basil and marjoram leaves and pour in the olive oil. Allow to sit for 10 minutes.
Cook your pasta in salted boiling water according to the packet instructions until al dente. Drain and quickly toss in with the tomatoes. Call your guests around the table, then taste the juice at the bottom of the bowl and adjust the seasoning if you feel it needs it. Serve right away.
at 2:24 AM
Preheat your oven to 200ºC/400ºF/gas 6. Season your beautiful fish fillets with the rosemary, finely grated lemon zest (no bitter white pith, please) and pepper – you don’t need to use salt because we’re going to wrap the fish in the lovely salty smoked bacon. Lay your rashers of bacon or pancetta on a board and one by one run the flat of a knife along them to thin them and widen them out. Lay 4 rashers together, slightly overlapping, put a fish fillet on top and wrap the rashers around it.
Lightly heat a large ovenproof frying pan, add a splash of olive oil and lay your fish, prettiest side facing up, in the pan. Fry for a minute, then place the pan in your preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish, until the bacon is crisp and golden.
While the fish is cooking, you can make your simple lemon mayonnaise. I do this by mixing homemade mayonnaise with a nice amount of lemon juice and pepper. Or, if you’d rather sit down for five minutes with a glass of wine, use some ready-made mayo instead! You want to add enough lemon juice to make the flavour slightly too zingy. This is because, when you eat it with the asparagus and the fish, it will lessen slightly in intensity. And don’t worry if the mayo looks a little thinner than usual when you’ve added the lemon juice – think of it as more delicate.
The asparagus is a great accompaniment because, like the fish, it also loves bacon. You can either boil or steam it; either way it’s light and a nice contrast to the meatiness of the fish. When cooked, toss it in the juices that come out of the fish. Simply serve the fish next to a nice pile of asparagus, drizzled with the lemon-spiked mayonnaise. And if you’re feeling very hungry, serve with some steaming-hot new potatoes.
at 2:19 AM
First of all, finely slice your carrots into matchstick-sized batons. Finely slice your radishes – you can leave a little of the tops on if you like. Quarter your apples, remove the cores and finely slice. Add all these to a bowl with the rest of the ingredients, apart from the sesame seeds. Toss together, carefully checking the seasoning, and serve with the sesame seeds sprinkled over the top. Eat straight away.
Try this: Turn it into a warm salad by adding some pan-seared chicken, prawns or scallops which have been dusted with a little paprika.
And this: Make it more of a snack by frying some halloumi cheese until golden with some chopped fresh chilli and crumbling this over the top.
Or this: Grill some pitta bread and serve stuffed with the Crunch Salad. Crumble in some feta cheese too.
at 12:30 AM
Chop the marjoram leaves, or pound them in a pestle and mortar. Put them in a bowl with a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and a pinch of pepper. Rub this mixture all over the goats' cheese and bake in the preheated oven for around 10 to 15 minutes until nice and golden.
Toss the rocket, fennel, olives and lemon basil together in a bowl. Dress your salad with around 6 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and just over half your lemon juice, and season. Divide over four plates and sprinkle over the crumbled goat’s cheese and sliced chilli ... fantastic!
at 12:29 AM
Whether barbecuing or roasting, here are your rough timings:
Belly: 25 to 30 minutes.
Kidneys and liver: 4 minutes.
Saddle and ribs: 15 to 20 minutes.
Legs and shoulder: 35 to 40 minutes.
Put your rabbit pieces into a bowl. Using a pestle and mortar, or a liquidizer, bash or whiz up the thyme and rosemary leaves to a pulp, then add the garlic cloves and bash or whiz again. Stir in 8 tablespoons of olive oil, the lemon zest and juice and the honey, and pour this over the rabbit. Put the meat to one side and let it come to room temperature while you light your barbecue.
Now I’m going to talk about flavour. Get a couple of sprigs of fresh thyme and tie them together like a little brush. Each time you turn the meat, dab it with a little of the marinade to give you a lovely encrusted layer of flavour. This rabbit is going to be really tasty!
Keeping the marinade to one side, remove the pieces of meat and season with salt and pepper. Sandwich the pancetta between the 2 pieces of belly using 3 skewers. Put the legs and shoulder on the barbecue. When they’ve been cooking for 10 minutes, put the belly on. After another 10 minutes put the saddle and ribs on. Make sure you turn the meat over every so often. Look after it by controlling the temperature and basting it continuously with the marinade. Cut three-quarters of the way through each kidney and open them out like a book. Cut the liver into 4 pieces and push one piece on to each remaining skewer, followed by a kidney and more liver.
When all the pieces of meat are beautifully cooked, add your skewered bits of kidney and liver on to the barbecue and cook until golden, along with your 2 remaining slices of pancetta. After a few minutes, when the pancetta is browned, put it on top of the meat at the cooler end of the barbie. Now get your guests round the table.
You can serve the rabbit with any white beans, or roast potatoes, or grilled vegetables, or different salads – it really depends on how you feel and what the weather’s like. Just put a big bowl of your chosen accompaniment in the middle of the table and serve all the meat on a board. Lovely with a glass of white wine. Simple, honest and bloody good.
at 12:25 AM
Preheat the oven to maximum. Heat a saucepan until medium hot and drop in the butter, sage leaves and 6 of the pancetta or bacon strips. Peel and chop 2 garlic cloves and 1 onion. Add the garlic, celery and onion to the saucepan and fry everything gently until soft and golden brown. Take the pan off the heat, add the breadcrumbs and, while the mix is cooling down, chop the apricots roughly and stir them in. When the stuffing has cooled down, add the pork, lemon zest, nutmeg, egg and lots of salt and pepper, and mix everything together well.
Slice the remaining strips of pancetta or bacon in half and slice 1 peeled garlic clove into thin slivers. Place a rosemary sprig and a garlic sliver on one end of a halved strip of pancetta and roll it up tightly. Repeat with the other pieces of pancetta until you have 12 little rolls. Stab the thighs and drumsticks of the turkey in 6 places on each side. Push a little pancetta roll into each hole until it just peeps out. This’ll give your turkey thighs a fantastic flavour and will keep them moist while they cook.
Chop the remaining onions in half and slice the carrots thickly. Give your turkey a good wipe, inside and out, with kitchen paper, and place it on a board, with the neck end towards you. Find the edge of the skin that's covering the turkey's breasts and gently peel it back. Work your fingers and then your hand under the skin, freeing it from the meat. If you're careful you should be able to pull all the skin away from the meat, keeping it attached at the sides. Go slowly and try not to make any holes! Lift the loose skin at the neck end and spoon the stuffing between the skin and the breast, tucking the flap of skin underneath to stop anything leaking out. Pop the orange in the microwave for 30 seconds to warm it up and stuff it into the cavity. Weigh the stuffed turkey and calculate the cooking time (about 20 minutes per 500g/1lb 2oz).
Place the bird on a large roasting tray, rub it all over with olive oil and season well. Surround with the chopped carrots, onions, remaining garlic, cover with tinfoil and place in the preheated oven. Turn the heat down right away to 180°C/350°F/gas 4, and roast for the calculated time, or until the juices run clear from the thigh if you pierce with it a knife or a skewer. Remove the tinfoil for the last 45 minutes to brown the bird. Carefully lift the turkey out of the tray and rest on a board that’s covered loosely with foil for 20 minutes while you finish off the veg and gravy. Skim the surface fat from the roasting tray and add the flour and stock. Place the tray on the hob and bring to the boil on a high heat. When the gravy starts to thicken, strain it into a bowl. Carve your turkey, serve with the gravy and dig in!
at 12:23 AM
Preheat the oven to 190ºC/375ºF/gas 5. Mix half the Parmesan, the mascarpone, the taleggio, the lemon zest and juice, and the walnuts. Put ¼ of the mixture to one side, then combine the remaining cheese mixture with the spinach and season to taste. Fry the sage leaves in hot butter and crumble ½ into the cheese and spinach mixture, saving the rest for the top. Put a good spoonful of the cheese and spinach mixture along one of the longer edges of each lasagne sheet and roll up. Put them in a flat oven dish, dot with the leftover cheese mixture, drizzle over ¼ of a glass of water and sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan and crispy sage leaves. Cover with foil and bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes.
at 2:17 AM
First of all, soak your porcini for 5 minutes in 140ml of boiling water. Preheat the oven to 230ºC/450ºF/gas 8. Using a teaspoon, score and scoop out some extra flesh from the length of the squash. Finely chop this flesh with the squash seeds and add to a frying pan with 4 lugs of olive oil, the onion, garlic, coriander seeds, chilli, rosemary and sun-dried tomatoes. Fry for 4 minutes until softened. Add the porcini and half their soaking water. Cook for a further 2 minutes before seasoning. Stir in your rice and pinenuts, pack the mixture tightly into the 2 halves of the squash and then press them together. Rub the skin of the squash with a little olive oil, wrap in tin-foil, and bake in the preheated oven for about 1¼ hours.
at 2:15 AM
First of all, score the skin of the duck with a sharp knife. Then dust the breasts all over with the five-spice and a good pinch of salt. Put the duck breasts skin side down in a cold wok, then bring it slowly up to a medium low temperature so the white fat turns into wonderful thin, crispy, golden crackling. Cook for around 12 minutes, then turn the breasts over and cook for a further 5 minutes.
By which time they will be cooked medium, so remove them to a plate and pour away the duck fat. Get all your veggies and flavourings ready to go and wipe your wok. Now you want to get it really hot – if you want to open the window (and cover the fire alarm – joke!), then do. You may need to cook it all in smallish batches depending on the size of your wok.
Add a couple of tablespoons of sunflower or groundnut oil to your hot wok. Carefully swill the oil around so that it covers the whole pan. Add your asparagus and sugar snap peas or mangetouts and toss around, then add the garlic, chilli and ginger. Continue stir-frying on the highest heat for a couple of minutes, until the asparagus has softened a little but still has a nice crunch. By all means have a taste. Remove the veg to a plate. Slice up your duck breasts into little slivers and put these back into the wok with any resting juices and maybe an extra pinch of five-spice. Cook until nice and crispy.
Put all your vegetables back into the wok, and turn down the heat. Add the oranges, honey, half the mint and the soy sauce, and serve straight away on a large plate, sprinkled with the rest of the mint. Serve with rice or noodles, as a starter or main course.
at 2:12 AM
1 Peel, core and roughly chop 2 apples. Place in a saucepan with butter and cook over moderate heat for 20 minutes or until soft and of a puréed consistency. Allow to cool.
2 Peel, core and quarter remaining apples, then cut into thin slices.
3 Preheat the oven to 200C/gas 6. Roll pastry out to 3mm thick then, using a large dinner plate as a guide, cut out a 30cm-diameter circle. Place on lightly greased baking tray and score an inner circle 1½cm from the pastry edge to prevent rising. Spread the purée over the inner circle of the base and place the remaining apple slices in a tight concentric circle. Beat the egg with 1 tbsp water and brush the pastry edge with the egg wash. Sprinkle the tart with 1 tbsp sugar, then bake for 20 minutes.
4 While tart is cooking, heat 3 tbsp sugar and 3 tbsp water over a medium heat in a small saucepan until the sugar dissolves and mixture reduces a little and becomes syrupy.
5 For lavender cream, combine honey and crème fraîche in a bowl. Just before serving, sprinkle with lavender flowers.
6 Remove tart from oven, brush with sugar syrup, then turn up oven to 220C/gas 7 and cook for a further 10 minutes or until top begins to caramelise. Remove from oven and leave to cool. Dust with icing sugar and serve with lavender cream.
To make your oregano oil, pound the oregano with a good pinch of sea salt in a pestle and mortar until you have a paste. Add the lemon juice and 8 tablespoons of olive oil and stir until you have a good drizzling consistency.
Bring a large pan of water to the boil, add your peas and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, then remove them with a slotted spoon or sieve. Add the broad beans to the pan and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, depending on their size. Drain and leave to cool, then pinch the skins off any big beans (you can leave the skin on any small or medium ones).
To dress the peas and beans you want the same balance of acid and oil as you would have in a salad dressing. So, put the olive oil and a good pinch of salt and pepper into a large bowl. Chop up most of the mint and throw it in, add the peas and beans and mix everything around. Add lemon juice to taste. You can serve the dressed peas and beans hot or at room temperature.
Heat a griddle pan or barbecue until hot, season your tuna steaks with salt and pepper and pat with some of the oregano oil. Place in the pan and sear for 1 to 2 minutes on each side. Personally I like to keep my tuna a little pink in the middle as this tastes much nicer, but if you’re going to cook it through please don’t nuke it.
Tear the tuna into 2 or 3 pieces and toss in a large bowl with the rest of the oregano oil. This will give you a lovely combination of flavours. Serve the fish immediately, with the peas and broad beans, scattered with the rest of the mint leaves.
PS Sometimes I love to throw random delicate greens like baby spinach, watercress, even rocket, in with the broad beans for 30 seconds before you drain them. The combination of peppery irony greens, creamy broad beans and sweet little peas makes the veg taste even better.
at 11:44 PM
1 Put the sliced cabbages, carrot and spring onion in a large bowl and if you’re lucky enough to have any other interesting winter cabbages leaves, you can add those into the mix too.
2 Put your milk in a pan on a medium heat with the garlic and anchovies and bring to simmer. Let it cook for 10 minutes until the garlic cloves are soft, then pour everything into a liquidiser. Add the vinegar, olive oil and mustard and blend for a few minutes then stop and have a taste. You want it to be quite acidic but if it’s too acidic add a bit of oil for balance. Add good pinches of sea salt and freshly ground pepper then pour over the sliced veg.
3 Use your hands to toss and dress everything and get everyone around the table. Heat the seeds in a dry pan for a few minutes until warm then scatter them over the salad. Sprinkle over your mint leaves, then eat it immediately.
at 11:40 PM
Skewers are useful for this recipe. They hold the four fillets together, making it easier to turn over when on the barbecue or under the grill. It also makes serving slightly easier because when you come to slice the fillets up, you can do it between the skewers, giving you pork 'lollipops' of blackened meat, which is quite fun. But if you don't have them, you can just use your tongs.
When you've made this once, I guarantee you'll make it at least once a year as it's so damn good. Great with salad, spiced beans, corn on the cob or rice.
To make your marinade, crush up the cumin, fennel seeds and cloves in a pestle and mortar and mix with the paprika, orange zest and juice, thyme, garlic, ketchup and balsamic vinegar. Season the pork fillets with salt and pepper, then toss them in most of the marinade until completely coated. Feel free to marinate for half a day, but at least an hour. If you have metal or wooden skewers, lay the fillets side by side and skewer them together about 2.5cm/1 inch apart.
When you're ready to cook, simply put the meat on to a barbecue or under a hot grill for 15 to 20 minutes or until nicely charred. Every time you turn the meat, brush it generously with the leftover marinade so you build up a sticky, blackened glaze. When they're done, put the fillets on a big platter and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Slice the meat between the skewers, or just slice each fillet in half, and sprinkle over some chopped coriander or squeeze over some lemon juice if you fancy.
at 11:36 PM