Heaven: What's Cooking? Recipes 2018

TrudyTrudy Heaven Host
edited January 16 in Limbo
It's the kitchen corner of heaven, where we share recipes and talk about how they turned out. Like Instagram but without the pictures, basically.

For reference back to the recipe discussion on the old boards, add a quick dash of this link.
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Comments

  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    If anyone is as fed up as I am by baked beans that are half a tin’s worth of bean in a great deal of sweetish goop, here is what to do.

    In a little oil, cook down some peeled tomatoes until mushy. Tip in a drained tin of haricot beans (way cheaper than the goopified ones), add a tsp (or more) of hot sauce and a tbsp of tomato ketchup. Heat through and there you are.
  • I made a creamy spicy chilli coconut milk curry thing with beans instead of my usual chicken the other day and dal as well. Even Mr C the carnivorous had to admit it was good. Maybe it sweetened the deal that I found him a Peshwari naan.

    Cattyish, pork meatballs tonight I think.
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Classics to return to: Chicken (or pork) Normandy.

    Chicken thighs (or diced pork)
    Cider
    Thyme
    Onion
    Apple
    Creme fraiche
    Bacon (streaky or lardons)

    Brown the chopped bacon and meat in a little oil. Soften the chopped onion in the same oil. Pour over a can of dry cider and a a good sprinkle of dried thyme. Simmer until the meat is cooked and the liquid reduced by about half. Drop in the apple cut into chunks or slices. Cook for a few minutes. Stir through a couple of tbsps creme fraiche and heat through.

  • Firenze, that Chicken Normandy sounds good. Out here we get excellent cider and crisp autumn apples from mid-March onwards.

    I've just been given a substantial ledge of orange and cream-coloured 'chicken of the wood', a wild mushroom. I'm not sure how to cook it. Perhaps with some chopped shallots and garlic in butter? I'll need to freeze half of it or more.

    Any suggestions welcome.
  • Definitely soup weather here at the moment. Yesterday I made this one:

    1onion and 2 small leeks, cooked in a bit of oil until softened. Added
    12oz (roughly) each of butternut squash and sweet potato, diced, along with
    2pts veg. stock, & simmered until the veg were soft. Mashed them and stirred in
    1 can of coconut milk (I used low fat, as that's what's in the cupboard) then seasoned it with
    salt & pepper.
    It made about 4pints, and I gave half to a neighbour who is incapacitated at the moment, and relying on her not-so-handy-in-the-kitchen husband to cook.
    The other half is in our freezer, as we have the remains of Tuesday's oxtail stew (minus almost all the meat) in the fridge to serve as soup today, and the makings of a couple of other soups begging to be made before long.

  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    I may be looking for recipes using old boots soon. Heavy (for Britain) snow seems to have strangled the road network, which means delivery lorries aren’t delivering, and shops are running out of fresh food.

    I am just off to bake bread. I have three or four days worth of dinners in the freezer, though the choices are limited to fish or lamb. However, the milkman didn’t make it this morning so I will have to go hunt tomorrow (and if I never post again, you’ll know the wolves got me).
  • DormouseDormouse Shipmate
    The chicken Normandy recipe works well with pork too.

    I'd add some ginger and chilli to RoseofSharon's soup recipe - one of our favourites! It works with a mix of any "sweet" vegetable - carrots, parsnip, squash, sweet potato etc.
  • American supermarket ciders tend to be very sweet. Are you using a sweet nonalcoholic cider, or one of those drier ones with an alcohol content?
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    American supermarket ciders tend to be very sweet. Are you using a sweet nonalcoholic cider, or one of those drier ones with an alcohol content?

    Dry and about 4-5% alcohol. A dash of calvados if you have any knocking about doesn’t hurt either.

  • MamacitaMamacita Shipmate
    It's St. David's Day, and although I am only 1/8 Welsh, I am thinking of making a Leek soup for dinner. Does anyone have a good recipe?
  • jedijudyjedijudy Heaven Host
    Oh, leek soup does sound really good!
    Waiting patiently for our Shipmates to come to our rescue!
  • Wesley JWesley J Shipmate
    edited March 2018
    Could I ask a kitchen-releated (cooking-related) question on this 'ere thread, please? It may be frowned upon - it's about microwaving stuff.

    What do you do if the following happens: on a recipe/nuking suggestion for a certain dish, they give you let's say the following information: a) heat at 700 watts for 2 minutes (a rice dish); b) heat at 750 watts for 15 seconds (Walkers mince pies).

    Many microwave ovens don't have the exact watt number demanded in such recipes, just somewhat higher or lower power settings. - What is advisable? Nuke on higher wattage, shorter time, or nuke on lower wattage, longer time? What is advisable? Watt do you think?

    Thank you, Chefs United. :smile:
  • The wattage on those recipes relates to commonly sold microwaves - usually 750W, 800W, 900W. I tend to read what the recipe suggests for the different microwave wattage and work out how to change it for the microwave I have. So, say the package says:
    900W - 4 minutes
    800W - 5 minutes

    and I have a 850W microwave, I cook for 4½ minutes
  • LothlorienLothlorien All Saints Host
    Firenze wrote: »
    American supermarket ciders tend to be very sweet. Are you using a sweet nonalcoholic cider, or one of those drier ones with an alcohol content?

    Dry and about 4-5% alcohol. A dash of calvados if you have any knocking about doesn’t hurt either.

    Sparkling apple juice was known for many yeqars as cider down here. Sugary sweet. Cider is now what used to be called hard cider, alcoholic. Normany chicken needs the proper stuff. Much better flavour and not sickly sweet.

    Sparkling apple juice is fine for children, chilled on a hot day if drunk very occasionally because of the sugar content, but Normandy chicken needs proper cider.

  • Dormouse wrote: »
    I'd add some ginger and chilli.
    I did think about adding some 'heat', but I wasn't sure if the neighbours like hot stuff, and we've had quite a lot of spicy food in the last week or so, and I just stuck to the recipe.

    Too late for St David's day, but I have a Leek & Bean Soup among the ones I am planning to make, as I dug up a couple of rows of leeks ahead of the freeze and they will need using soon.

    1 tbsp oil
    1 large onion, chopped
    2 leeks, sliced
    2 rashers bacon, chopped

    1 pt chicken stock,

    1 can of cannelli beans
    2 tbsps plain yoghurt
    chopped coriander leaves
    black pepper.

    Cook the first four ingredients together for 3-4 minutes,
    Add the stock, bring to the boil and simmer 15 mins.
    Cool a little, then whizz in a blender or processor
    Stir in the last four ingredients, heat through and serve
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    edited March 2018
    While on soups -

    Green Soup

    Spring onions
    Cucumber
    Lettuce
    Peas
    Vegetable stock

    Saute the chopped spring onions briefly. Tip in the other veg, chopped or shredded as appropriate. Add the stock, simmer for 10 minutes, liquidise.

    (Quantities depend on what you have, and how much soup you want. Fresh herbs such as mint, parsley or coriander also good. Finish with a swirl of cream or yogurt, or a sprinkling of parmesan).
  • Wesley JWesley J Shipmate
    The wattage on those recipes relates to commonly sold microwaves - usually 750W, 800W, 900W. I tend to read what the recipe suggests for the different microwave wattage and work out how to change it for the microwave I have. So, say the package says:
    900W - 4 minutes
    800W - 5 minutes

    and I have a 850W microwave, I cook for 4½ minutes

    Thank you very much, Curiosity killed. A beginning of enlightement ensues in the Wesleyan kitchen! :smile:
  • MarthaMartha Shipmate
    Microwaves vary a lot anyway, I find. Mine usually takes less time than suggested. If in doubt, give it half the suggested time, stir well, taste a little bit and heat more in shorter increments as required. Better that way than exploding it all over your microwave.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    There's been some discussion on the British thread in AS about soup and the manufacture thereof.

    I made this celery soup last week, and it passed the "soup I like made of veggies that I don't" test with flying colours.

    Celery soup (adapted from a Delia Smith recipe)

    1 oz butter and a drop or two of olive oil
    2 smallish onions, chopped
    About ½lb celery (with a few leaves), chopped
    1 medium potato, peeled and chopped
    1 clove garlic, chopped
    A pinch of dried basil
    Salt and pepper
    1 pint hot chicken stock
    A couple of tablespoons double cream
    ¼ milk

    Heat the butter and oil in a heavy saucepan or casserole and add the veggies as they're chopped, along with the garlic, basil and seasoning.

    Stir to mix, cover and cook over a very gentle heat for about 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally to make sure it doesn't catch.

    Add the stock, stir and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook gently for 20-25 minutes or until the veggies are tender.

    Remove from the heat, whizz with an immersion blender and add the cream and milk.

    At this point, it will benefit from being left until next day, to give the flavours time to develop.





  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    I wonder if we need an anti-recipe thread - alternative title ‘There was a good idea in there somewhere’?

    I am inspired to this thought by the increased marketing of all-in-one lunch type meals. Pot Noodle have been around for a while, but now I see various tuna salads - uniformly revolting imo. Yesterday I tried M&S’s Pulled Pork and grains* thingie; a once in a lifetime experience I think it fair to say. *including quinoa. It always includes quinoa.

    I am in the market for such products, when it’s too cold for salad and soup is too much of a faff, but I’ve yet to come across any that aren’t a travesty.
  • The paella mixes are usually OK. But I'd agree that the other hot ready meals are not always as good as they think they are. I have more tolerance for some of the salads but I tend to be selective and most of my favourite things are not on the current safe list (contain shellfish or nuts - I've had to apply an Epipen recently. I'm not planning to repeat the experience. )
  • CattyishCattyish Shipmate
    I microwave things periodically and my main trouble is not spilling stuff everywhere. How anyone can nuke porridge for one in anything smaller than a litre jug is a mystery to me. I have to reduce the time too. It's not limited to my home microwave; the one at work is just as bad.

    When it comes to hot ready meals there are few I really like. I tend to buy the ones Mr C likes since he's the one who gets really hangry (angry because he's hungry) when I'm awfully late home and he doesn't really cook. IME making extra chilli and storing portions in plastic tubs and making extra soup of almost any type to store in microwaveable soup containers works well.

    Chips don't work when reheated, though part-cooked potatoes can be oven cooked from the freezer to crispness relatively quickly. Anything large like a steak is likewise not great reheated, but then I can cook a steak rare and be perfectly happy with it so that's quick.

    My favourite really quick meal is basmati rice (10 minutes) with salmon steaks (grilled, about 10 minutes) and broccoli or cabbage with leek (less than 10 minutes). It goes:
    Get home from work with supplies.
    Boil a full kettle.
    Line the grill with foil. Turn on the grill at a medium setting.
    Rinse the half cup of rice per person and add double volume of boiling water. Put the lid on tightly and put on the hob at medium heat.
    Put the salmon under the grill.
    Cut the leek (just a bit for flavour) and broccoli or cabbage, stick in a saucepan and add boiled water. Put on at medium.
    Turn the salmon.
    Check emails.
    Turn down the rice when it starts to boil over.
    Check the salmon and see if it needs turned again.
    Warn Mr C it's nearly ready.
    Stick the plates under the grill pan to warm. Set the table.
    Call Mr C down.
    Serve.
    A variation is to add a handful of frozen peas to the rice. Also the salmon is lovely with a little chilli and can alternatively be oven cooked if I have more time.
    Does anyone do quicker meals than this?

    Cattyish, contemplating some sort of pasta for tea.
  • I have a specially big bowl to nuke porridge - only fill it about ⅓ full and use a plate to cover it. I mostly manage to avoid getting it all over the microwave but it's because it gets left to cool between the first 2 minutes and next 30 seconds of nuking while I do other things.
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Processed foods I do use - microwaveable rice, flavoured cous cous and wok-ready noodles.

    Competitive with Cattyish I reckon is my Instant Paella. Soften a sliced onion in the wok. Toss in some diced chorizo, a packet of prawns, some frozen peas. Stir for a minute or two until the peas are thawed and the chorizo begins to crisp, add the packet rice, stir until heated through and there you are.

    Pretty much the same thing, minus the chorizo, but plus some shredded Chinese greens, and a bit of garlic and fresh chilli, noodles instead of rice and it’s Instant Healthy Stir Fry.

    Other meals I could bring in under 15 mins would be fish (with seasonings/aromatics of choice) in foil parcels. While those are in the oven, microwave potatoes (c 10 mins) and microwaved green veg (3 mins).

    And of course omelettes take no time at all.

  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    If you blow up your microwave by trying to cook porridge in it (as a former boss of D's did) it serves you right. :naughty:

    When we lived in Belfast, although we both like cooking, we were more likely either to eat out (Belfast is spectacularly well-served for good, reasonably priced eateries) or resort to Marks & Sparks' ready-meals. Most of them were OK-ish, but the one I remember as being really quite good was the chicken jambalaya.

    Of course, I've since discovered that you can make a very decent approximation of chicken jambalaya* with Proper Ingredients™ in well under an hour, but back then I never seemed to feel like cooking after a day at the office.

    * or paella, risotto or whatever.
  • My speedy go-to recipe if unexpected guests turn up for lunch is frittata. So long as I have a strong grated cheese (preferably Gruyère or cheddar), onion, garlic and at least four eggs, most vegetables in the fridge (baby spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, leeks) will work. If I have more time, I can also crisp some diced bacon or cold leftover ham.
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Something I made as a starter yesterday deserves to be promoted to A Lunch.

    Baked Feta

    Put roasted pepper or softened onions (or both) in a shallow ovenproof dish. Add wodge of feta. Cover with slices of tomato. Sprinkle with oregano and drizzle over olive oil. Bake until soft (about 20 - 30 mins). Eat with crusty bread.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    That sounds lovely, Firenze. Medium oven temperature (i.e. about 350°F/180°C)? And would it work with ordinary goat's cheese instead of the feta?
  • Although quite dissimilar, the feta recipe reminded me of a recipe I like to make when Younger Son & family visit - they come by train, aiming to be here for lunch, but their arrival time tends to be rather flexible. This dish can be served quite warm or down to room temperature, so will happily wait until they arrive.
    I discovered it last year when, for the first time, I had some success growing Florence fennel.

    Red onions, cut in very thin wedges and fennel bulbs, halved and sliced. Toss together in your preferred cooking oil (I use rapeseed) and place in a large roasting dish.

    Cover with halved cherry tomatoes, scatter pitted green olives and chopped fresh oregano leaves over. Cut an unwaxed lemon into thin slices and layer over the top.
    Season well, cover tightly and bake at G7/C220/F425 for 1 hour.

    Leave to cool for as long as necessary, then scatter with crumbled feta. Serve with crusty bread.

    This is so good that I am going to sow twice as many fennel seeds this year :)
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Piglet wrote: »
    That sounds lovely, Firenze. Medium oven temperature (i.e. about 350°F/180°C)? And would it work with ordinary goat's cheese instead of the feta?

    Medium, yes. Since feta is a mixture of sheep and goat milk, it should be ok. Possibly shorter cooking time if it’s a softer cheese.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    edited March 2018
    Thanks! :smile:

    I've just made another pot of the celery soup, and added a pinch or two of crushed anise seeds to it, which I think haven't done it any harm. It's going to be a day or two again before we eat it, which seems to help the flavours to develop.
  • I've just discovered the Ketogenic diet and my wife and I recently rid our apartment of carbohydrates of any kind. Basically, we get to eat high fat foods and not feel guilty about it! Hooray! So...last night we ate fried chicken with some lovely steamed broccoli and cauliflower. I have yet to buy any almond flour for "bread", but that's because almond flour is crazy-expensive. Any thoughts?
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    It sounds like a version of the Atkins diet. I tried it years ago, but didn't really get on with it* - where's the joy in eating butter without potatoes or bread?

    Having said that, if it suits you, go for it - a (male) friend of ours lost several stone on it (although I think the weight goes back on fairly readily if you go back to an ordinary diet). I've heard it said that men have more success with it than women, but whether that's really the case I don't know.

    * apart from an absolutely glorious dish involving duck breasts cooked with cream and red wine and served with green beans. Where's that drool smiley?
  • HedgehogHedgehog Shipmate
    Piglet wrote: »
    I've just made another pot of the celery soup, and added a pinch or two of crushed anise seeds to it, which I think haven't done it any harm. It's going to be a day or two again before we eat it, which seems to help the flavours to develop.
    I wonder how that soup would be without the cream/milk? And maybe some lemon juice in lieu of salt? Maybe I'll try it this weekend.
  • Hedgehog, I make a similar celery soup, with flour as thickening instead of potato, although I'm sure either would do. No cream or milk, no garlic, and a bouquet garni instead of basil. I use vegetable stock (from a cube) and season with lots of black pepper.
    No salt, other than that in the stock, as I find that celery is salty enough on its own
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    edited March 2018
    I'm not sure how it would work without the cream and milk: I suppose you could use yoghurt instead for fewer calories, but that's no use if you can't have dairy food at all. If all you want is to thicken it up a bit, you could add extra potatoes.
  • Hedgehog, I make a similar celery soup, with flour as thickening instead of potato, although I'm sure either would do. No cream or milk, no garlic, and a bouquet garni instead of basil. I use vegetable stock (from a cube) and season with lots of black pepper.
    No salt, other than that in the stock, as I find that celery is salty enough on its own

    I did something like this last night and added a spoon of soured cream. It was delicious and I ended up eating the second portion I’d intended to save - oops!

  • Looking for meatballs without tomatoes and gluten, I cooked these (link) Vietnamese meatballs last night - served with brown rice noodles and steamed vegetables, they took about 20 minutes to cook and tasted amazing.

    (They would have been quicker and smoother if I'd hauled the food processor out, but I didn't want to wash it up afterwards. Substitutions - tamari for fish sauce and I invented a gluten free dipping sauce.)
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    edited March 2018
    Something that is pretty trouble free (and indeed, gluten free) - Braised Duck Legs.

    Place legs in pot (one at a time if need be) and heat until both sides are browned. In the resultant fat, fry several onions, cut in wedges. Return the legs on top of the onion, add juice of an orange, dusting of tumeric and a tbsp of pomegranate molasses (or any other seasoning - I fancy orange, ginger and soy would also work) and a little water (c 100 ml). Cover tightly and put in a moderate oven for an hour.

    Fall off the bone duck with sweet, melty onion and yummy sauce.

  • Curiosity killedCuriosity killed Shipmate
    edited March 2018
    Sadly my proscribed ingredient list includes all citrus, tomatoes, apples, pineapple, parsnips, dairy, gluten, most nuts and shellfish. These days alliums (onions, leeks, chives) are allowed. We had a time when they were off the list.

    Originally, the list was rendered lust appropriately, as out alone I gravitate towards shellfish and nuts.
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    edited March 2018
    The orange is optional. Duck/onion/star anise is another possibility.

    Or there’s Sophie Grigson’s take; duck legs braised with onion and mushrooms in red wine.
  • LydaLyda Shipmate
    I wish it was easy to get ducks here They are yummy. Sniffle. :cry:
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    We can get duck here but it's very expensive. Having been on a bit of an economy drive since we came back from Scotland, I've been turning whatever I can find in fridge and larder into soup; today's had bacon, celery, carrots, potatoes, lentils, half a jar of tomato-and-basil pasta sauce, garlic, chicken stock and cream and it was really good.

    The only advantage I can see to winter weather is that it makes you feel like making comfort food like that. This weekend, I think maybe a slow-cooked beef casserole.
  • We get good organic duck out here: duck breasts are more popular, so I can get duck legs at a cheaper price. One of my discoveries has been that it is almost impossible to overcook duck legs, whereas duck breasts have to come out of the pan or oven pronto.

    I have braised duck legs with leeks, garlic, freshly squeezed orange juice and a little red currant jelly for a wonderful sauce.

    *MaryLouise chafing at the mild rigours of Lent and eager to get to lamb and duck and dark chocolate*
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    I suspect that duck isn't so popular here, or it might be cheaper; when we did see duck breasts, they were $12 each, which IMHO is daylight robbery.
  • Duck can be bought in supermarkets and butchers here. I think its all to do with taste.

    Soups - Piglet you are someone after my own heart.
    Soups in winter is the only proper food, followed by a nice stew of whatever nationality or meat and veg you prefer from Scottish stew to Welsh cawl, from a tagine to a porkult. Cooked long and slow.

    I love wild game stew or pie but here in Wales I can't get the packs of mixed game I used to in Suffolk. I do miss my game stew with root vegetables and dough balls (which being translated for the Sassenachs is suet dumplings with herbs).
  • RicardusRicardus Shipmate
    The other night I had a dream about cornflakes with cheese and tomato.

    I therefore tried: take a bowl of cornflakes, add roughly chopped cheese and a squirt of tomato purée, mix well and microwave for two minutes.

    The result is surprisingly edible, although I think what has been revealed to me is in fact just a cheaper version of nachos.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    WildHaggis wrote: »
    ... I can't get the packs of mixed game I used to in Suffolk ...
    Is it possible that you could get them by mail-order? I have a vague memory of getting pheasants by mail-order when we lived in Belfast, but I can't remember where they came from.

    In our continuing culinary economy drive, I made this for lunch today:

    Larder/Fridge Risotto

    Serves 2

    Olive oil
    Half an onion, chopped
    A clove of garlic, chopped
    2 large mushrooms, sliced
    About ¾ cup arborio rice
    About a pint of hot chicken stock, infused with a pinch of saffron strands
    About 6 oz chopped cooked chicken
    About half a jar of tomato-and-basil pasta sauce
    Salt and pepper

    Heat the oil over a medium heat in a Dutch oven and cook the onion and garlic with a pinch of salt for a few minutes until the onion starts to soften.

    Add the rice, and stir to coat with the oil. Add the hot stock, a ladleful at a time, letting most of the liquid be absorbed before adding the next one. When about half the liquid is in, add the mushrooms, then the chicken, seasoning and the rest of the stock (still a ladleful at a time).

    Stir in the pasta sauce, then allow to cook for a few minutes until the rice is cooked but still with a little bite.

    It should take about 20 minutes to cook after you start adding the stock.

    I served it with home-made bread and it was really rather good.
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Sausage casseroles are so often based on a tomato sauce, of which I’m a tad chary (too many memories of cheap red wine and badly cooked spag bol). This is nicer -

    Sausages
    Bacon
    Carrot
    Onion
    New potatoes
    Green beans/mange tout/peas etc
    Cider*

    Cut the sausages in thirds and fry in a deep pan or wok with the bacon (chopped or lardons). Toss in the chopped onion and, when that has softened a bit the sliced carrot and cubed potato. Pour over the can of cider. Cover and simmer for c 20 mins. Add the peas or sliced beans, and give it another 5 to 8 minutes uncovered.

    If you want a bit of brown on the saussies, put under a hot grill for a few minutes.

    Pleasantly fresh and tangy.

    *The dry, alcoholic sort.
  • I used to do a sausage mix on top of the stove like that, but instead of the peas or beans used cabbage and maybe apple chunks. Haven't made it recently because I've tried to cut down on the amount of processed pork we're eating - put off by this article - I'll go take that discussion to Purgatory, though.
This discussion has been closed.