Friday Night is Curry Night

I have some very fond memories of living at home, every Friday night was curry night. Used to love spending time cooking curry in the kitchen with my dad. Usually had a drink or two aswell 🙂

Dad's Curry

Dad’s Curry

I’ve never quite attempted to make a curry like his, but since I now live 300 miles away from my parents, I can’t just pop home every Friday!

A quick phone call to my dad earlier this week and I think I’ve got the hang of the recipe. Saying that he always makes cooking look easy.

You can use whatever meat you like, but since Pork is my favourite, that’s what I went for. Start off by frying the pork, to give it a bit of colour, and then adding water, leaving to boil, until all the water has reduced, and you are back to frying.

This is when you add your Cumin seeds and your fresh ingredients; Mushrooms, Peppers, Onion, Garlic, Ginger and a few finely chopped coriander stalks.

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You can now add your curry paste, which you can make by combing Indian spices with a little bit of tomato puree and water. I used Garam Masala, Hot Curry Powder, and Coriander powder.

IMG_1646[1]You’re pretty much ready now, just throw in some coriander leaves to finish and serve! Wasn’t quite as good as Dad’s, but it was still up to par.

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You Can’t Beat a Good English Fry-Up

There is simply nothing more pleasing than a good old English fry up, in fact I could probably eat another one right now!

Although I have to admit that is is much more enjoyable when somebody else cooks it for you, it’s such an easy, relatively quick meal to cook up. It just requires quite a large amount of multi-tasking to get everything just right.

Getting it right for me involves cooking the bacon till it is really really crispy, or shall I say ‘crunchy’. Oh and my favourite part, which I always save until last is dipping my toast into the beans 🙂

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Date night at pizza express

For a commercialised restaurant, Pizza Express has in my opinion exceeded expectations. Don’t get me wrong, it isn’t gob smackingly brilliant, but I’ve eaten there on a number of occasions and have always been somewhat pleased with the experience.

On a meal there with my best friend, she introduced me to their signature garlic doughballs, and ever since I just cannot resist ordering them as my starter!

After a meal there in December, our waiter give us a buy one get one free voucher to be used in January. So here we are, taking advantage of that offer for a Thursday night date night!

Enjoying his classic American pizza

Enjoying his classic American pizza

We decided to go early to avoid the evening rush, and our plan worked! The service was great and the pizza was lovely!

However, I do find it rather irritating that they don’t cut the pizza or at least provide you with a pizza cutter. By the time we were finished sawing through our pizza our fingers were somewhat rather sore.

Meal for two, an absolute bargain = £18

 

Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic

Whenever I tell people I am cooking this for dinner, everyone turns their nose up and immediately thinks I’m crazy for using 40 cloves of garlic. Honestly though, it isn’t as crazy as it sounds, it’s actually pretty delicious!

I found the recipe in one of Nigella’s cookbooks, and I just had to try it. Since then, it has become my ultimate comfort food.

Start off by searing the chicken legs in an ovenproof dish, I tend to use my Denby and it does the job perfectly. I then remove them from the pan and begin to stir-fry chopped spring onion and thyme.

You can use chicken thighs if you prefer

You can use chicken thighs if you prefer

Then you will need to layer 20 cloves of garlic (unpeeled) on the bottom of the pan, top with the chicken legs and then place the remaining cloves on top along. Season with salt and pepper and then add a fair amount of white wine.

Finally add a few sprigs of thyme, and cook in the oven for 1 hour 30 minutes. Make sure you have some crusty bread in the cupboard, as you will definitely want to soak up the juices. In fact, that’s the part I look forward to the most!

The ultimate comfort food, serve with crusty bread and vegetables!

The ultimate comfort food, serve with crusty bread and vegetables!

For the original recipe go to http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/nigella-lawson/chicken-with-40-cloves-of-garlic-recipe.html

 

 

Channel 4’s ‘The Taste’ Continues to Please

The Taste

The taste

Having watched the first two episodes, I am absolutely hooked, the only problem being that watching it makes me so hungry! I’m a big fan of Nigella (we even share the same last name), and confess to owning several of her cook books. I’m really pleased with the range of contestants on the show, they aren’t all professional chefs, and some of them are home cooks like me!

Looks like we’re in for a treat, with tonight’s theme being comfort food. With a chicken curry pie, Debbie is definitely an early favourite of mine, although perhaps I’m a little biased as I am a big fan of Indian spices.

Or.. perhaps not, as she wins immunity!

The second part of the show is far more entertaining, as the mentors become ‘blind’ judges, commenting on dishes without knowing who is the mastermind behind it.

I’m not a big fan of the ‘posh cheese on toast’ idea, simply because it is so farfetched from what many of us know as cheese on toast. I have a feeling that this will be his downfall, as he has overcomplicated a very simple dish!

Time is up and I’m vouching for the Rice Pudding.

Nigella has done it again, two cooks in the bottom. Though, that was lucky for Debbie who had immunity, otherwise I feel she would have been eliminated this week!

And Claire’s luck has run out as she is the second person to be eliminated from The Taste.

What’s on the Menu this Week?

Okay, so I like to maintain organisation, and I absolutely love writing lists about anything and everything! Which is why, every week I write a menu, not only does this make life a little easier, it also helps keep the shopping budget down.

  • Monday – Thai Beef Curry
  • Tuesday – Baked Turkey Meatballs
  • Wednesday – Mushroom, Spinach and Potato Pie
  • Thursday – Satay Pork Steaks
  • Friday – Dining Out at Pizza Express
  • Saturday – Cottage Pie with a Sweet Potato Topping
  • Sunday – Bacon, Cheese and Onion Omelette

I’m really looking forward to making the Thai Beef Curry today, I’ve never cooked Thai food before and I’m using a root ingredient called Galangal which is apparently similar to Ginger. Wish me Luck!

 

Boneless Shoulder of Pork Topped with Garlic & Thyme Butter

There is something I find quite enjoyable about cooking a Roast Dinner, but that’s probably because I only cook for two!

On our last shopping trip, we found a lovely boneless shoulder of pork, lovely because it was reduced to £1.79 and as you can image it went straight into the trolley. This time, I decided to try something different. Usually, I focus all my attention on the crackling, and I still haven’t got that perfect yet, so I chose to ignore that and focus on adding flavour to the meat.

I had some Thyme and Garlic leftover, so I used these to make a paste, by finely chopping the Thyme, crushing the Garlic and mixing with Butter. TIP: Don’t waste time using a garlic crusher, just finely chop the garlic, pour over some salt and using the side of your knife push down to crush. All that was left to do now was to season the pork with a little salt and rub the paste onto the meat.

Prepped and ready to go

Prepped and ready to go

For this particular roast, I cooked the Pork for 2 hours in the oven at Gas Mark 6. Pulling it all together, I served the pork with Yorkshire Puddings, Roasties cooked in Beef Dripping, Stuffing Balls and Vegetables, and of course the gravy made from the meat juices left behind!

The final result

The final result

P.S. It was delicious

My Very First Blog

Hey! So I cook a lot and love trying out new recipes and ideas, and I thought “why don’t I start a food blog”, well here it is guys and girls. I usually cook good home meals, nothing too fancy, but still flavoursome and interesting.

I’ll be sharing recipes, and generally chatting about my love for food. My favourite food in the whole world has to be Sirloin Steak, cooked rare! Second to that, I absolutely love mushrooms, I could probably eat a plate full of mushrooms alone.