After my trip to California, I came back to England craving vegetables. Usually I would have been so packed full of vegetables after a trip home that I would come back here craving junk, but this was such a whistle-stop tour that there was very little eating at home and when we did it was what was quick and satisfying − cheese, bread and wine. So I came back wanting vegetables of all colors, all at once and right now! These tacos were the perfect antidote to a week of gout-inducing luxury.
For my birthday back in November I got Uyen Luu’s My Vietnamese Kitchen and I was so excited. I dove into it and buried myself in the vibrant colors and beautiful photography, wanting to cook and eat everything all at once. Then I started looking through the lists of ingredients. It is fair to say that Vietnamese cooking requires a lot of what we would term ‘specialist’ ingredients − but, of course, they wouldn’t be considered specialist ingredients in Vietnam, would they?
One of my newest acquisitions, Tom Kerridge’s Proper Pub Food, has been eyeing me up since I unwrapped it Christmas morning. And knowing as I do of the treasures within, it has taken all my strength to not go methodically through it, cooking tomato salad with beef dripping dressing, then smoked haddock and créme fraîche omelette, then barbecued cake.
Well, it’s finally come. A Crust Eaten is one year old today. This past year has been so much fun: writing again for the first time in a long time, sharing my kitchen concoctions, which would have previously been condemned to a nameless grave in the depths of our bellies, and discovering so many talented bloggers across the world who have inspired and emboldened me more than I can say.
January can be a trying month. The weather inevitably hits the seriously wintery, germs abound and diets and detoxes reign. So for those days when the blues hit, there’s loaded potato skins. Plenty of cheese, crispy bacon and comforting mashed potato means a happy belly and a happy you.
Ah, January. Everyone is writing about getting healthy, eating kale, putting the bottle down and keeping the butter knife at bay. This post is not denying the value of any of that − I mean, who doesn’t love kale? But when the dark winter days start getting to you and you find your fingertips trembling over a stack of dusty takeaway menus, reach for a jar of this stuff. It’ll put a spring in your step and a smile on your face − it might be a pretty good cure for a stuffy nose too.
Cooking lettuce doesn’t exactly come naturally. Sometimes I see chefs on TV cooking little gem lettuce with peas in the French style − Petits Pois á la Française − and it all looks so lovely, but at the back of my mind I just know that if I did it the lettuce would taste like old socks. Roasting makes a bit more sense because it’s more about caramelization rather than actually cooking the lettuce through. With that in mind, I thought I’d give this recipe a go.
January is a month of cutting back and reigning ourselves in after the excesses of the holidays. Meatless Monday is a good ethos any time, but this time of year especially. Taking a bit more care about what we’re putting in our bodies is an important part of modern life, what with all the incredibly unhealthy and damaging food offered up to us every day. In addition to cutting back on what we’re eating, January usually also means cutting back financially and this recipe in particular is a great January jewel for being healthy, satisfying and economical.
This is a roundup of recipes I’ve tried – or have been meaning to try – from some of my favorite blogs (and one from my own!). These recipes will be sure to keep your kitchen busy after the holidays, so you can steer clear of the January blues!
The whole Scandinavian lifestyle seems to be growing more and more popular in recent years and food is no exception. Lots of seafood and different methods of preservation are to be expected, but Trina Hahnemann, author of The Nordic Diet, is trying to give voice to the lighter side of Scandinavian cuisine. This dish is light, but still warming, and depending on accompaniments it would be just as comfortable in summer as it is in winter.