Cinco de Mayo – Tequila & Tacos

"Why did the Mexican push his wife off the cliff? Tequila!" Yes, I do write my own material and yes, I am here all week (try the veal) etc. Anyway, it's 5 May! And because 90% of you reading this are European, that will mean absolutely nothing whatsoever! It's just the day after Star Wars Day, right? But those of you in the US, or unbashed Americophiles like me, will know ...

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spelt cake diana henry gooseberry cake

Rhubarb, Almond & Spelt Cake {+ more thoughts on wholegrain baking)

Jump straight to the recipe → "A great empire, like a great cake, is most easily diminished at the edges" - Benjamin Franklin I had been putting my faith in the idea that the law of averages must (surely) dictate that, if you bake with wholegrains enough, you will eventually create something that does not resemble a musty cricket ball. And finally my faith has been rewarded in the form of this ...

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Fruit & Nut Soda Bread

 "We've always found the Irish a bit odd. They refuse to be English" - Winston Churchill My foray into the world of Baking with Wholegrains continues to be, shall we say, challenging. Two batches of rhubarb and orange spelt muffins were decidedly average (tasty but resembling ice hockey pucks) and let us never speak about the wholewheat cinnamon buns I attempted last weekend. I expect it isn't really helped by the fact that I am ...

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Gwyneth’s Carrot & Ginger Dressing

"I'd rather smoke crack than eat cheese from a can" - Gwyneth Paltrow (2011) It occurred to me today, while queuing in the Post Office for the fourth time, that I wouldn't have the first clue where to buy crack or cheese in a can. Is this what it means to be truly middle class? Seriously, what even is cheese in a can? Is it an American thing? If we are talking about this ...

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Plenish Spicy Lemonade

"I often quote myself. It adds spice to my conversation" - George Bernard Shaw As my six regular readers will know, I recently attempted to replicate Plenish's marvellous Cashew Milk in my very own kitchen and it turned out pretty damn well, if I do say myself. You can read all about that here. On the back of this, somebody I know off of Twitter (I'd like to say a Twitter Friend ...

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Singapore Noodles & The Art of the Stir-Fry

"Maybe I should just quit and go back to making noodles" - Kung Fu Panda (2008) Do grapes grow in the Black Forest?  This has been vexing me. It's all Waitrose's fault. I noticed this week that their Black Forest frozen fruit selection is 25% grape. GRAPES!  Naturally, I was outraged at such blatant supermarket cost-cutting duplicity. But then a quick look on the internet told me that Tesco and Sainsburys were up to the very same thing. Only Asda ...

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Sunday Night Bircher Muesli

"I still eat pizzas, I still like pies, I still have spaghetti hoops for breakfast... but it's in moderation now" - Shane Warne My weekday breakfast was pretty much exactly the same for the best part of 10 years. A Starbucks Venti skimmed cappuccino and a skinny peach and raspberry muffin. Sometimes I would go wild and stop at Pret and have a croissant or pain au raisin but, by and ...

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Ottolenghi Red Rice & Quinoa Salad

"Eat a cow. Save a Bolivian" - Greg Pollowitz (2013) I am not really a huge fan of quinoa. It isn't that I particularly dislike eating it. It's mainly because of the stupid pronunciation of its name and the fact that I am rather childish about these things and tend to take against things that EVERYBODY else thinks are amazing. It's a supergrain! It's going to make you live longer and look better and ...

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Rye Banana Bread with Homemade Nutella

Jump straight to the recipe → "To be honest, I think bananas are a pathetic fruit" - Andy Murray (Hitting Back, 2008) Baking with whole grains is one part of this healthy eating thing that I have been studiously ignoring. White wheat flour makes the best cakes. FACT.  The absence of gluten in most alternative flours more often than not results in cakes that are dense and heavy, or dry and overly ...

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Cinnamon & Vanilla Cashew Milk

"I think everybody's nuts" - Johnny Depp Is milk bad for us? I really quite genuinely have no idea anymore. Pretty much everywhere I look I can find millions of sensational articles telling me that milk is some awful inflammatory, acid-forming, snot-inducing poison. The anti-milk brigade also delights in pointing out that humans (and mainly only those in the West) are the only species who drink milk to adulthood and, to ...

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Radicchio & Red Onion with White Bean Purée

"Having one designated meat free day a week is actually a meaningful change that everyone can make, that goes to the heart of several important political, environmental and ethical issues all at once." - Paul McCartney (2009) We have been doing Meat Free Monday for a few months now, albeit with varying degrees of success as I seem to have a blind spot as to the proper classification of chorizo and ...

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Nigel Slater’s Fennel, beetroot & sour cream salad

Jump straight to the recipe → "You don't win friends with salad" - Homer Simpson (1995) I was a very late convert to the merits of a salad. Because, you see, a good salad is not a simple thing. It is something that requires an understanding of flavours, texture and balance. It is a culinary dark art. In her book, The Art of Simple Cooking, Alice Waters (the undisputed Californian queen of ...

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