Japanese curry

26 Apr

Japanese curry

Making Japanese curry from scratch for the first time was the high point of my week.

I discovered Japanese curry when I lived in Tokyo after finishing uni, and became an instant convert. I love the thick, slightly sweet taste of the sauce, and the way it sticks to the vegetables like a thick coat of paint.

What makes Japanese curry unique is the roux, which is sold in thick bars. I’ve always lived where Asian ingredients are easy to come by, and usually have a packet of Japanese curry in the cupboard.

You fry, then simmer, your veg, meat or tofu to the point of tenderness, dissolve a chunk of roux in the pan and instant curry goodness ensues. Continue reading

Kung pao chicken

23 Apr

kung pao chicken

I adore kung pao chicken – the hotter and more mouth numbing it is, the better I like it. However, the rest of the family don’t share my tolerance for hot food.

To make kung pao chicken the whole family can enjoy, I use a few dried chillies for base heat when cooking, remove the girls’ portions, then stir through additional fresh chillies for the grown-ups.

Continue reading

Rocket and fennel salad with toasted seeds

20 Apr

There has been a fennel bulb languishing in the veggie tray for ages. It’s been there for so long, I can no longer remember my reason for buying it.

I now realise that it was  waiting for its moment to shine in this rocket and fennel salad with tahini-ginger dressing and toasted seeds.

Continue reading

Hot cross bun and butter pudding

15 Apr

hot cross bun and butter pudding

Comfort food is having a bit of a moment around here, which makes sense. And things don’t get much more comforting than bread and butter pudding.

This one is made with a six-pack of hot cross buns that were inexplicably overlooked on Easter weekend. Continue reading

Chocolate chip cookies

13 Apr

chocolate chip cookies

This is a truly excellent chocolate chip cookie recipe. One of the things I like best is how a modest list of ingredients produces such a stellar result.

Even before these locked-down days, I’d come across a recipe with 250g best-quality chocolate, 4 eggs, two types of sugar, and bag of M&Ms thrown in for good measure, and think “of course that’s going to taste good – it’s a bunch of rich, sweet things mooshed together.”

We’ve made these chocolate chip cookies with plain and self-raising flour (no baking soda), wholewheat, and on one occasion khorasan flour. Dark chips, light chips, butterscotch chips or chopped baking chocolate. Whatever nuts we have on hand, or no nuts at all.

Continue reading

Microwave banana pudding

13 Apr

microwave banana pudding

Microwave banana pudding has been a little spot of brightness in these worrying days, scratching a sticky toffee pudding itch we hadn’t known was there.

We’ve made this recipe from the BBC Good Food website four times in the past three weeks. It’s a great way to use up old bananas, takes 15 minutes start to finish, cooks while you have dinner, and tastes fabulous.

Continue reading

Chicken soup with kneidlach

12 Apr

chicken soup with kneidlach

I leave the chicken soup with kneidlach to my mother-in-law – a marvellous cook whose chicken soup draws superlatives from anyone who has the good fortune to taste it, whose fluffy kneidlach could potentially float up from the broth in their airy pillowiness.

But faced with a chicken soupless Passover this year, I dusted off my kneidlach making skills and took one for the team…

Continue reading