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Dinner for dad

As Andrews dad, Reg, is recovering from a massive stroke, we’re trying to make small and tasty dinners for him. Because of the risk of him chocking on his food, it has to be mashed up. And he dislikes mushy food! After yesterday’s success and a clean plate, we’re continuing our mission of Dinner for Dad. It also helps out Maureen, who is not only his wife but also his full time carer. We made three dinners and two desserts from what we had in the house. Hopefully it goes down well

Dinner 1:

Lentil stew & creamed corn

Apple pie (minus the pastry) and ice cream. With apples from Reg’ garden. 

Dinner 2:

Gorgonzola, spinach and tuna bake 

Creamed chick peas 

Banana ice cream

Dinner 3:

Sausage casserole in tomato sauce 

Cous cous

Small meals, easy to swallow and hopefully full of flavours. 

Above is a picture of Maureen and Reg Clark
Take care of each other, folks. Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans.

Love, Natasja 

Toffee apple jam

If you are lucky enough to have your own orchard, or just a few apple trees, this years yield seem to be a good one! And as autumn is upon us, with the clocks going back, the time has come to creat…

Source: Toffee apple jam

Oxtail soup 

This recipe is taken from the Guardian’s food pages (https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2010/oct/30/traditional-british-soup-recipes), where you will find other British classics such as London particular, Mulligatawny, and Cock-a-leekie by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. You have got to love the British language!

“Though this is very simple to make, you need to start cooking the soup the day before you want to serve it, so you can remove the layer of fat from the stock once it’s cooled. Serves eight.

• 70g butter

• 1.5kg oxtail, cut into pieces and trimmed of excess fat

• 2 celery stalks, sliced

• 1 onion, stuck with 3 cloves

• 2 carrots, sliced

• 1 small turnip, peeled, quartered and sliced *I used two parsnips

• 1 leek, roughly chopped *I skipped this

• 1 bouquet garni *These can now be bought in handy ‘teabags’

• 10 black peppercorns

• 300ml red wine *I skipped this

• Salt and freshly ground black pepper

• 60-80ml sherry *I skipped this

• 3 tbsp finely chopped parsley *I used the green of the celery

Warm the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat and brown the oxtail pieces, in batches if necessary, until browned on all sides. Remove from the pan, set aside and sweat the vegetables in the meat juices for five minutes.

Return the meat to the pan, along with the bouquet garni, peppercorns, and 1 ½ – 2 litres of water. Season, bring to a boil and simmer, covered, until the meat is very tender and just about falling off the bones – about three to four hours.

Strain the liquid into a bowl, cool and refrigerate. Discard the veg, peppercorns and bouquet garni. Pull the meat from the bones, discarding any skin and fat. Place in a bowl, season and refrigerate.

Next day, remove the solid layer of fat that will have formed on the top of the stock, pour the stock into a pan, add the meat and bring just to a simmer. Adjust the seasoning to taste, and simmer very gently for five minutes. Serve in warmed bowls, scattered with parsley.”
Verdict: I love this soup. It’s a bit greasy to make, and time consuming. The layer of fat is rather off-putting, but the flavours are lovely, and the soup a real winter warmer. As this was made for someone else, I skipped the wine and sherry, and also because I didn’t have any in the house

So enjoy! And thanks, Hugh!

Love,

Natasja

 

A classic winter warmer based on Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s traditional British soup recipes found in the Guardian. Link & recipe to follow. 

So watch this space! 

Due to a small gas leak discovered earlier this week, cooking was a challenge (as the gas had to be turned off completely). We do have a microwave oven but I have never done anything other than heat or defrost food in it, and to be honest ready-made meals from a microwave oven does not fill me with glee. I wanted a home cooked and preferably warm meal. A’s mum came to the rescue with a slow cooker, and I’ve always been keen to try one out. 

We decided to make a butter chicken variant, a mildly spiced curry sauce from Punjab. However…. The recipe I tried was pretty bland and dull, so I have decided not to share the recipe with you. How great am I?!  

We also bought a shoulder of pork to try in the slow cooker. Shoulder of pork is an inexpensive cut of meat and goes a long way. The main ingredients would be apple and sage. 

I rubbed the pork with salt, pepper and paprika, and let it settle for a while. 

We had to brown the meat somehow and used A’s fishing stove. The meat was then transferred to the slow cooker on top of the cooking apples and sage leaves. 

We glaced the pan with some leftover rose wine and poured this over the meat. Then one large onion and several garlic cloves chopped, browned and added to cooker. The setting put on low and you’re done! 

5 hours later we adjusted the setting to medium and added chopped parsnip and carrot to the cooker and left it until the vegetables had cooked through. 

Verdict? A decent meal with flaky pork and vegetables in a flavoursome broth, served in deep bowls.  

I won’t run out and buy a slow cooker, I don’t think. It was fine in the emergency we did have, but it doesn’t really do anything I can’t do on the stove or in the oven. And I do prefer a good roast. 
   
 
1. A’s cooker was very unstable, so we had to brown the meat on the floor. 

2. Chicken laid to rest in slow cooker, with chopped coriander (cilantro) stems and a few tomatoes. 

Love,

Natasja 

Near where I live, there’s this wonderful, little park and in it a lovely cafe. It’s not very big, but serves hot coffee and tea, freshly made soups, and home-baked cakes, and now waffles. Well, it will be serving waffles on 31. January from 10am.

I sometimes pop round on a Sunday morning, after getting the newspapers and sit down for a coffee and a chat. My conversations will often turn to food, and as I was hungry and a bit homesick, waffles came to mind.

One thing led to another, and now I’ll be making waffles next Sunday 🙂

Nothing better than a hot drink and a warm waffle with jam and cream on a Sunday morning. Hopefully the weather will be fine too.

So maybe see you at Parkview Cafe, in West Harrow Park?

And if you feel like making these yourself, my recipe can be found here

Love,
Natasja

 

waffles

Marinade til lam

I en tidligere bloggpost nevnte jeg lammesteken vi spiste i romjula, og her følger marinaden vi brukte. Husk at en god marinade samt stekesjy er et ypperlig utgangspunkt for god saus 🙂

 

Ingredienser:

  • 4 ss olje
  • 2 ss sitronsaft eller 1 ss hvitvinseddik
  • 1-2 fedd knust hvitløk
  • En halv løk delt i fire
  • 3 knuste pepperkorn
  • 1 ts rosmarin
  • 1 stilk persille
  • 1/2 ts timian

 

 

Framgangsmåte: 

Bland alle ingrediensene i en bolle, og la det hele trekke i romtemperatur noen timer før du marinerer kjøttet.

Det enkleste er å marinere i en plastpose, det krever minst marinade. Legg kjøttet i plastposen, hell på marinaden, knyt igjen og snu hver 3. time, minst 4 ganger i løpet av et døgn.

Legg så kjøttet i langpanne, hell over marinaden og stek som ønsket.

 

God helg!

Natasja

 

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