Fish and Shellfish

Well that didn’t exactly go to plan: Disaster to Delicious! Herb Cured Smoked Haddock Brandad

Puree of Herb Cured Smoked Haddock

Brandade of cured smoked haddock, Quails egg mayonnaise and sourdough croutons

Cookery bloggers don’t usually tell you about the dishes and the ideas that don’t work out, we have a horrible habit of writing up the successful recipes, giving readers the impression that we never make mistakes, that those delicious ideas we have in our heads always work out as planned. But as any cook will know disasters, and things that don’t quite go to plan happen, perhaps especially for those creatives amongst us who have a tendency to get carried away, inspired by ingredients, flavours and aromas; those of us who dream about how to deconstruct recipes and add our own twist to a dish.

Preparing for the Easter weekend I had one such (luckily not ‘binworthy’) moment with a new recipe idea. It didn’t work out as planed and as I was pondering how to remedy the situation it occurred to me that the thinking process that this time turned a near disaster into something delicious might be worth sharing with you – it might come in handy next time you get caught out with a dish that hasn’t gone quite as expected, encourage you to ask questions about the flavour and texture in order to work out if you could create something that might work, rather bin your efforts too quickly in a fit of pique. Continue reading

A Very Versatile Sauce – Saffron Orange Sauce

Seared scallops, orange sauce and steamed samphire.

Seared scallops served with an orange sauce and steamed samphire.

 

This simple reduction sauce is naturally bursting with flavour and with colour. It is easy to make and is extremely effective and versatile.  The recipes below outline how to serve this delicious sauce with  seared Scallops and with Asparagus. I also outline further ideas for its use at the bottom of the page.

The sauce is best made at least a few hours  before it is needed to allow the saffron to impart its full flavour and colour. It could also be made the day before and stored in the fridge. Reheating instructions are provided. Continue reading

Chicken and Salmon Tikka served with crouton salad and green mayo

When the cookery school began back in 2005 a number  of local gents formed a cooking club that met once a month in the Stirring Stuff Kitchen. They called themselves The Big Boys Cooking Club or the BBCC for short. Every month they would suggest a skill or a particular dish that they would like to try and My job was to plan a menu and  lesson around their idea. Each evening would culminate in a very late dinner of the dishes that we cooked, washed down with excellent company, vital conversation, friendly banter and good wine.  The following Tikka was on the menu from the evening that Cyrus Todiwala http://www.mrtodiwala.com/ was invited to teach us more about using spices in Indian cuisine.   Cyrus very generously allowed me to use the recipes that he cooked for us on that evening as the basis for my Curry Club Indian Cook and Dine events at the school. The Curry Club Cook and Dine days and evenings were amongst the most popular course at the School so Thank you Cyrus for helping us on our way.  I hope you caught his talk this summer at http://www.henleyonfood.com/.  If you haven’t eaten at any of Cyrus restaurant’s then make time to go http://www.cafespice.co.uk/. Failing that then invest in one of his cookery Books, his knowledge of Spices in Indian cuisine is next to none. Continue reading