Ox Cheeks with Quince and Pomegranate

Beef, or ox, cheeks are perfect for slow cooking, cheap and full of flavour. They’re well worth seeking out. A good butcher should be able to help and you can also ask him/her to trim them up for you, although that’s easy enough to do at home.

I’ve cooked them here with quince and pomegranate in a Persian/Iranian-inspired stew. Meltingly soft meat and a gently spiced, sour/sweet fruity sauce – delicious.This is one of the best things I’ve made this year. Continue reading

Emergency Chicken

Pic: Catherine Grassin Hart

If you follow me on social media you’ll know that I’m finally getting my long-promised cookery school off the ground, hurrah! Planning the courses is enormously satisfying. So is testing them on my long-suffering friends and guinea pigs (see left: I’m not telling you what we were laughing about).

Writing legal requirements like terms and conditions and privacy and cookies policies is less exhilarating. They’re now in the hands of a solicitor for what he rather hilariously and all too aptly calls a sanity check.

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Gammon with Pineapple Salsa

Autumn is nearly upon us and it’s been so unsettled it took the farmer nearly a fortnight to harvest the wheat field at the bottom of our garden. Nonetheless I’m clinging to the end of summer and the hope of more sunshine between the downpours.

If the weather is hot and you don’t want to stand over the stove for too long, or if you’re like me and just can’t face reality, this recipe is perfect. It’s lively with sweet/sour/salt/hot flavours and requires the minimum of cooking. Continue reading

Glazed Beetroot Salad and Beet Leaf Frittata

Him Outdoors has been growing a mixture of red, yellow and stripey beetroot and for once I managed to dig them up while they were still tiny. They had heroic quantities of fresh, unblemished leaves and I hate waste, so I doubled up on the beetroot to use both tops and roots. Continue reading

Nightingales and Roses

… possibly the most romantic title for a cookery book I’ve come across and what a joy it is to read. Maryam Sinaiee won the Guild of Food Writers’  First Book Award this year and she deserved it. This is clearly a labour of love. I’m a pushover for Persian/Iranian dishes at the best of times and Maryam’s recipes are so enticing. Continue reading

Merguez Sausage Patties

I made some merguez sausages recently – proper ones, with lamb and spices, stuffed into actual sausage skins. They were fabulous. But it occurred to me, brainbox that I am, that most people don’t have the time or inclination to make their own sausages, or indeed possess a sausage stuffer. So this is for you. You’re welcome. Continue reading