Notes for menu for tomorrow night with Z&G
Moro muslim mediterranean marinade butterfly lamb shoulder cooked on wood BBQ (aka MMMM lamb)
- Dill & broad bean pilav (will cook with some lamb stock from the deboned shoulder)
- Cauliflower, pine nuts, saffron and raisins
- Chickpea salad
- Yoghurt & zatar
- Mango buttermilk panna cotta
- Rice pudding with BBQ mango
All the main course recipes are from Moro book 1, mango buttermilk panna cotta will be my regular buttermilk panna cotta recipe with mango puree (2.5 leaves gelatine, 250ml double cream, 100g caster sugar, 1 vanilla pod, 250ml buttermilk)
Rice pudding will be Simon Hopkinson recipe from his famous book – slow cook for 4 hours with 1:10 ratio of rice to creamy milk!!
Dill and broad beans come from the garden!
Mangos are getting on for last of the season alphonso and kesar
Lamb will get cooked on a charcoal grill with some additional wood chips added for flavour – not decided what wood to use yet
Tonight – the night before: marinate the lamb, make the lamb stock, put chickpeas on to soak, make the buttermilk panna cotta and perhaps make the rice pudding too
The best, and strangest dish I ate yesterday was at the Magpie Cafe; a dish of “cullen kipper” – some of Fortune’s lovely smoked kippers done in the style of cullen skink, all creamy with chunks of potato. This was served with the most luscious, strawberry jam, rich with toffee notes. “Do you know how to operate this, love?” I was asked. Turns out the jam and bread was “to take away the smokiness in the mouth, so you are ready for the next course”. It also filled me up a fair bit, before the Magpie Cafe’s deservedly-famous haddock and chips arrived, with batter tasting richly of beef drippings.
Lunch at the Star Inn, Harome. Just pictures really because I’m feeling a bit lazy. Stand-out dish was probably the duck egg with shrimps, “little crab sandwich”. All lovely and buttery and eggy and dill-y and mace-y. Andrew Pern’s recent Great British Menu dish of rhubarb twenty-seven ways (approximately) was most notable for its Yorkshire Puddings (two each!), filled with rhubarb compote and pistachio custard. A little pot of venison cottage pie which went with roe deer was also rather toothsome. Hannah was on the whole a little less impressed with her fish dishes. But she’s crap at ordering I’ve come to realise. Generally speaking it was “all good baby”.
Nick, where are all the pictures of food and stuff recently, I hear you ask? (I think that’s what you were saying…)
Well it’s all been very hectic recently what with various travels and travails and such like. But I’m back in the saddle now. What’s getting my juices going at the moment? It’s a competition between Southern BBQ, Cajun and Spanish, reflecting my recent trips. But Spanish is winning right now – what with a couple of recent trips to Barcelona and a refreshed appreciation for what must be my favourite cuisine (well, cuisines technically, depending on which part of Spain we speak of. I like them all). Hannah bought me a copy of Rick Stein’s spain and although it doesn’t add much to the path already well-trodden by the Moro trilogy it does have some nice recipes and being Rick Stein they usually work well.
A visit to the Birmingham wholesale market on Thursday yielded some spanking fresh sea bream, all scarlet gills and shiny eyes. So I thought I’d try out Rick’s recipe for salt-baked bream with salpicon, making use of a jar of roasted red peppers sitting in the fridge. I added a some alioli as an additional touch (as I needed some egg whites to mix with the salt to form the crust anyway). A few asparagus spears complete the dish – sadly the asparagus season is just finishing and this is the last we will get at the farmers’ market.
Cooking fish in salt is much less stressful than most fish recipes as the timings are much less critical and the moisture is sealed in by the salt crust. Aim for a temp of 58 degrees C for doneness.
Also at the market I picked up some alphonso mangos which are in their very short season now, and some Badami mangos which are just as nice. Look out for these please before it’s too late.
New books: Rick Stein’s Spain (good), Weber’s Complete Barbecue Book (not read it yet), Planet Barbecue (amazing, and amazing value), Real Cajun (excellent), Zeitoun (non-Fiction book about Katrina by Dave Eggers which I am really enjoying)
New projects coming-up: Hot-smoked duck ham (brine duck breasts overnight, hot-smoke), home-made boudin (pork, liver and rice flavoured and poached sausage)
Now all we need is some decent weather …