All posts filed under: Winter Warmer

Pumpkin, Pecan & Spinach Mash for Inbetween Days

Summer has gone. The leaves are falling, the winds rising, and the rain is a more regular visitor. The nights close in earlier than before. It’s that time of year when it is impossible to dress correctly, always being too hot, or too cold. It’s just not all that pleasant. But, it’s not all bad. Pumpkins are in season again, their proud round orangeness proclaiming the arrival of an imminent Halloween. Carve ‘em, light ‘em, and make them a jack ‘o lantern. Do eat them too, they’re delicious. I love them in soups, curries, tarts and pies. I love a rough and tumble of diced cooked pumpkin with strong cheese, nuts and spinach. I especially love them in a mash. Now this mash is non traditional. It’s crunchy and soft, salty and sweet. For me it was the perfect plate of comfort that I needed to get me through one of the first autumn evenings. Now pumpkins may seem tricky, but I promise that they’re not. For this, buy one small one, cut in half …

The Beauty of the Bird: Another Lovely Duck Breast Recipe with Soya and Spice

More duck?! So sue me, I love eating duck. It’s definitely been the bird of choice this winter. I generally love all poultry, but duck is so rich in flavour, so receptive to marinades and so easily available that it has featured heavily in this winters cooking. One of the things that I love about cooking birds is the variety of textures and flavours possible with each. Take duck, as we’re talking about that. The breast is tender and gentle with lovely tender skin coasting a slim layer of bouncy delicious fat. Cooked properly with the fat rendered out slowly, you’ll get a gentle slightly crispy skin and tender pink flesh. The legs are wonderful slow roasted so that the skin is super crispy and the meat dark and falling off the bone. The flavour is intense and rich, and ok it’s fatty, but so what? As long as you’re not eating them every day, you’ll be ok. Duck loves fruit, duck loves spice. Hey! So do I. We can be a kitchen dream team. …

Recipe: Balsamic & Thyme Duck with Aubergine & Tomato Mograbiah

I love a bit of urban foraging. Turning a corner and seeing rosehips, blackberries, wild garlic, the random edibles that grow in random places. This summer I even found a wild apple tree in the hedgerow at the end of the train track. Another type of urban foraging I love is not really foraging at all, although I call it so. I love finding ethnic food shops and exploring their shelves looking for previously undiscovered delights that I can use at home in my kitchen. A few years ago, one such forage yielded a bag of mograbiah in a Turkish shop. Like giant “giant cous cous” (really Israeli cous cous – widely available in the Jewish section of larger supermarkets and Jewish food shops), I wondered what it was. The instructions were illegible to me, so I chucked it in my basket and approached the counter. I intended to ask the lady at the checkout for some advice, when she picked it up and looked at it, and I thought – SWEET! She’s going to …

Recipes from the Archives: Some Top Winter Warmers

November is a lovely month to spend indoors, cooking for friends and family around a roaring fire, mulling some wine or gin or confecting some hot port. Those weeks leading to Christmas demand a certain prudence in advance of silly season, when things can get a little too much. There’s lots of old recipes on this little blog that have remained very popular over the years, and remain the most read. They could almost be called The Pork Files, however there’s a couple of great vegetarian numbers and others to enjoy also. Some newer readers might not know them, and it’s always nice to have a list of Winter Warmers, so here you are, my top suggestions for those toasty evenings in. Prawn Curry A spicy dazzler, and one of the most popular recipes on this site (second recently to it’s vegetarian sibling which will appear later in this post). Buy your spices whole and use the best tinned tomatoes and you will be rewarded with a warming and fruity curry with clear bright flavours. …

Recipe: Chorizo, Iberico Pork Belly and Chickpea Stew

It has been a good week for cooking. I love it when Winter saunters in and I have so many excuses to retreat to my kitchen and cook up my own storm to match the one outside. A mid week shopping trip provided excellent ingredients, particularly the Iberico pork belly I used in my last recipe, I used it again today. I tend to cook old favourites right now, and it occured to me that I haven’t really blogged them. I always like to cook new things and experiment for recipes that wind up here, but I’ve decided to start blogging my old favourites, those soothing winter warmers, over the next little while. The Iberico pork belly is a big fatty piece of salted pork belly from those finest of Spanish pigs. It’s like super fat pancetta that when rendered, releases smoky rich fat that adds a beautiful dimension to any dish, I am not sure I’ve ever had anything quite like it. The lovely Iberico pigs  spend their lives happily wandering munching on acorns, …