Sausage Meatball Stroganoff

Standard

meatba 12/06/2017

After going meat free for so long, I was craving a meat fix. What better way to get it than with sausages?! This recipe uses good quality sausages to create a really simple meatball dish that packs a ton of flavour and satisfaction.

If you can find it, shiitake mushroom powder is so good to use in recipes like this. It delivers a real umami punch to dishes. The savoury flavour is perfect with the creamy mustard sauce but if you can’t find it, the dish will still be really lovely.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

For the meatballs:

  • 4 sausages, skins removed (I used Lincolnshire)
  • 2 spring onions, chopped finely
  • ½ tsp fennel seeds
  • ½ tsp dried rosemary
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp breadcrumbs

For the sauce:

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 100g chestnut mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp flour
  • 1 beef stock cube
  • 2 Tbsp sour cream
  • 1 heaped tsp mustard
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp Shiitake powder
  • 300ml water
  • 2 spring onions, chopped
  • Linguine, or any pasta and fresh herbs to serve

meatb meat

Method:

  1. Grind the fennel seeds and rosemary in a pestle and mortar until well ground.
  2. Add the sausage meat to a bowl along with the spring onions, breadcrumbs, seasoning and ground herb mix. Stir really well with a fork to combine.
  3. Take teaspoons of the mixture and roll out into little meatballs.
  4. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Fry the meatballs off until browned all over.
  5. Add the garlic and mushrooms to the pan and continue to cook for 2 minutes.
  6. Next, add the flour and shitake powder and crumble in the stock cube. Stir to coat the meatballs and mushrooms before adding any liquid.
  7. Once this is done, add a splash of water along with the sour cream and mustard. Stir everything together then add the remaining water and let the meatballs bubble away on a medium low heat while you cook the pasta.
  8. Once the pasta is ready, stir the spring onions through the meatball sauce and serve.

Smoked Mackerel Fishcakes

Standard

screenshot_2016-10-01-19-41-38-11 01/10/2016

I don’t know if this is the ‘right’ way to make fishcakes or if this recipe uses the ‘right’ ingredients but I do know that this version is seriously tasty.

I used oak smoked tinned mackerel as my partner can’t stand smoked fish (strange man) so I always have a tin lurking in the back of the cupboard ready to use for when I only need dinner for one. You can, of course, use whatever fish you like but I find smoked mackerel particularly flavoursome.

The rest of the ingredients are also what I had in the cupboards. I made this up the other day as I was craving fish cake and I couldn’t be bothered to leave the house so needed to use whatever I had. To be fair though, I tend to have absolutely everything and anything in my cupboards that maybe a normal (not obsessed with wacky food stuffs) person wouldn’t have.  But I can assure you, this recipe requires bare minimum ingredients and is so easy to make! Again, adapt it to your tastes. If you don’t like something, swap it.

As mentioned, I made this meal for myself so the quantities are for 1 large portion but if making it for more people, use 1 mackerel fillet per person and adjust the other quantities as necessary.

Serves 1

Ingredients:

  • 4-5 small new potatoes
  • A chunk of peeled swede, diced
  • 1 tin of oak smoked mackerel, drained
  • 1 heaped tsp wholegrain mustard
  • Salt and fresh ground black pepper
  • Flour, for dusting
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 50g Panko breadcrumbs
  • 25g Parmesan, finely grated
  • 1 tsp Smoked paprika
  • A few sprigs of sage
  • Knob of butter

Method:

  1. Cut the potatoes and swede into equal sized chunks and boil in a pan until tender. Drain and mash together until fairly smooth. A few lumps are desirable.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, flake the mackerel up and add the mustard and seasoning. Add the mashed veg to the bowl and stir well to combine.
  3. Beat the egg in a separate bowl and set aside. In another bowl, mix the panko, parmesan, smoked paprika and a few leaves of finely chopped sage. Season and set aside.
  4. Using a little flour on your hands, shape the mix into 3-4 patties. Dredge the patties in the beaten egg then transfer them to the panko bowl and coat evenly.
  5. Heat a knob of butter in a frying pan over a medium heat. Drop a sprig of sage in to flavour the butter then place the fish cakes into the pan to sizzle in the herby butter and become crispy and golden. After a few minutes, gently flip the fish cakes and fry for a few more minutes until the wonderful smell of herby cheesy goodness fills the house. Remove and serve with a fresh green salad.

Cheese & Onion Pasties

Standard

screenshot_2016-09-23-21-24-02-11 26/09/2016

Pasties! As the weather begins to turn, nothing hits the spot more than a comforting pasty with crisp, golden pastry with an oozing cheesy filling. Mmmmm

Different fats produce different characteristics in baked or fried foods and hard fat will produce a crisper texture than any other. I have tried using beef dripping with this pastry and lard. Both have given extremely crisp results with their own savoury character.

The use of some strong flour in the pastry also makes the dough a little more resilient to make shaping easier without sacrificing tenderness.

The mix of different mustards is purely my preference so if you have any favourites then feel free to experiment.

Either way, the mix of fresh spring onions with hearty potato, autumnal swede and melting strong cheddar is an absolute winner encased in a crisp, buttery house of loveliness.

screenshot_2016-09-23-17-50-48-11 screenshot_2016-09-23-21-20-09-11

Makes 6

Ingredients:

For the rough puff dripping crust:

  • 300g plain flour, plus extra for rolling
  • 100g strong white flour
  • 1 teaspoon fine salt
  • 50g unsalted butter, softened
  • 150g beef dripping or lard, at room temperature
  • 150ml lukewarm water

For the filling:

  • 150g Extra mature cheddar (I used Barber’s Cruncher)
  • 100g peeled and diced swede
  • 100g peeled and diced potato
  • 3-4 large spring onions, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon plain flour
  • 1 heaped teaspoon each of wholegrain mustard, Dijon mustard and English mustard powder
  • A few sprigs of thyme – optional
  • 1 egg, beaten, for egg wash

Method:

  1. For the rough puff dripping crust:
  2. Place the flours and salt in a mixing bowl. Cut the butter into little pieces and rub into the flour then cut the dripping or lard into 1cm pieces and toss it through. Do not rub it in. Stir the water in without kneading until the dough just combines then leave for 10 minutes.
  3. Generously flour the work surface to stop the dough sticking then roll out the dough to 50cm x 20cm. Fold the dough in by thirds then roll out again towards the unfolded ends and fold in by thirds once more. Cover the dough or place in a bag and let it rest somewhere cool (but not as cold as the fridge) for 30 minutes.
  4. Repeat the rolling, folding and resting twice more. The pastry is then ready to be used. You can also freeze it at this point in a sealed ziplock bag then just allow to thaw completely before using.

For the filling:

  1. Place the grated cheese and spring onions in a bowl with the swede and potato, add the salt, pepper, flour and thyme, if using, and toss this together and chill.
  2. Roll the pastry out to about ½cm thick and cut out circles using a side plate as a guide.
  3. Mix the mustards and mustard powder together in a small bowl. Lightly coat the centre of each pastry circle with the mustard and brush the edges with water. Place a generous spoonful of filling on one half of the pastry leaving a clean ½cm border.
  4. Fold the pastry over the filling and press the edges together gently to seal. Crimp as you like. Repeat with the remaining pasties then place on a greaseproof lined baking tray.
  5. Chill the pasties in the fridge while you heat the oven to 200C then brush them with egg wash and bake them for 45 minutes until the pastry is rich and golden and the filling is piping hot.

Welsh Rarebit

Standard

IMG_20151118_213733[1] 18/11/2015

There are many variations for this classic dish. Some recipes call for cayenne or paprika, others for ale. This version uses a cheesy bechamel as a base for a beautifully smooth and warming, tangy mustard sauce. A perfect treat for an indulgent brunch.

Ingredients:

  • A knob of butter
  • 2 tsp plain flour
  • Approx 100ml milk
  • 40g Mature cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 tsp English mustard
  • A few dashes of Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 spring onion, finely sliced
  • 2 slices of your favourite bread
  • 1 clove of garlic

Method:

  1. Make a roux by gently heating the butter in a small milk pan then adding the flour. Stir to combine and cook the flour.
  2. Gradually add the milk, stirring constantly so lumps don’t form. Add enough milk to make a smooth sauce that is not too runny.
  3. Add the grated cheese and stir in until melted. Add the mustard, Worcestershire sauce and spring onions then check for seasoning. Remove from the heat.
  4. Toast the bread then cut the clove of garlic in half and rub one half of raw garlic on each slice of toasted bread. Spoon the cheese mix evenly onto each slice of toast then place under a preheated grill until browning and bubbly .

Steak, Swede & Mustard Pasties

Standard

IMG_20141104_194635[1] 05/11/2014

Now normally in my household, steak is to be served in enormous slabs, hot off the grill, bloody and with piles of chips. This recipe yields about 6 pasties and uses just one medium sized steak chopped up in the entire batch so I was a little apprehensive that I’d be asked where the rest of it was when serving up. This was not the case though as these pasties are so full of flavour and succulence, no one noticed. A result for my purse strings, my stomach and some anxious cows.

The rump steak bakes in the pastry crust to become meltingly tender and takes on the peppery succulence of the mustard.

Different fats produce different characteristics in baked or fried foods and hard fat will produce a crisper texture than any other. I have tried using beef dripping with this pastry and lard. Both have given extremely crisp results with their own savoury character.

The use of some strong flour also makes the dough a little more resilient to make shaping easier without sacrificing tenderness.

It may seem excessive to have so much pepper in the recipe along with mustard but the pepper really is the rock to the steak’s roll here and the mustard adds a background heat that brings what might otherwise be a potentially boring filling to life.

The mix of different mustards is purely my preference so if you have any favourites then feel free to experiment.

Ingredients:

For the rough puff dripping crust:

  • 300g plain flour, plus extra for rolling
  • 100g strong white flour
  • 1 teaspoon fine salt
  • 50g unsalted butter, softened
  • 150g beef dripping or lard, at room temperature
  • 150ml lukewarm water

For the filling:

  • 250g rump steak
  • 100g peeled and diced swede
  • 100g peeled and diced potato
  • 1 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon plain flour
  • 1 heaped teaspoon each of wholegrain mustard, Dijon mustard and English mustard powder
  • 1 egg, beaten, for egg wash

Method:

For the rough puff dripping crust:

  1. Place the flours and salt in a mixing bowl. Cut the butter into little pieces and rub into the flour then cut the dripping or lard into 1cm pieces and toss it through. Do not rub it in. Stir the water in without kneading until the dough just combines then leave for 10 minutes.
  2. Generously flour the work surface to stop the dough sticking then roll out the dough to 50cm x 20cm. Fold the dough in by thirds then roll out again towards the unfolded ends and fold in by thirds once more. Cover the dough or place in a bag and let it rest somewhere cool (but not as cold as the fridge) for 30 minutes.
  3. Repeat the rolling, folding and resting twice more. The pastry is then ready to be used. You can also freeze it at this point in a sealed ziplock bag then just allow to thaw completely before using.

IMG_20141104_194950[1]

For the filling:

  1. If you have time, put the steak into the freezer until almost frozen as it is then easier to dice evenly. Cut the meat into 1cm cubes, place in a bowl with the swede and potato, add the salt, pepper and flour and toss this together and chill.
  2. Roll the pastry out to about ½cm thick and cut out circles using a side plate as a guide.
  3. Mix the mustards and mustard powder together in a small bowl. Lightly coat the centre of each pastry circle with the mustard and brush the edges with water. Place a generous spoonful of filling on one half of the pastry leaving a clean ½cm border.                                              IMG_20141104_194911[1]
  4. Fold the pastry over the filling and press the edges together gently to seal. Crimp as you like. Repeat with the remaining pasties then place on a greaseproof lined baking tray. IMG_20141104_194831[1]
  5. Chill the pasties in the fridge while you heat the oven to 200C then brush them with egg wash and bake them for 45 minutes until the pastry is rich and golden and the filling is piping hot.

These pasties are great straight from the oven with lots of green veg and thick beefy gravy or cold the next day for lunch. The pastry reheats to a less flabby finish than shortcrust or puff pastry too.

Rustic Bacon, Chorizo & Cheddar Bread

Standard

IMG_20141004_152522[1] 05/10/2014

This is a seriously easy, no-nonsense recipe for savoury bread. Serve with soup or on its own with butter. You can use anything to flavour this bread. I just happened to have bacon and chorizo that needed using and of course cheese is a no brainer. You could try seeds, herbs, sun dried tomatoes, olives, whatever tickles your pickle.

This bread is similar to a soda bread as it uses no yeast. Baking powder is the only raising agent and the texture of the bread is almost cakey which makes it taste even more luxurious when you eat it.

Ingredients:

  • 320g plain flour
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 100g Cheddar cheese, grated
  • 100g smoked bacon lardons
  • 50g chorizo, diced
  • 200ml milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • 60ml olive oil

Method:

  1. Place the bacon lardons and chorizo in a frying pan and heat until the fats release and fry until golden and crisp. Set aside to cool.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180C. Lightly grease and flour a 2lb loaf tin.
  3. Sift all the dry ingredients into a large bowl. Add the grated cheese and cooled bacon and chorizo and mix well.
  4. Pour the milk into a large measuring jug along with the oil, mustard and eggs. Whisk to combine.
  5. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and slowly pour in the liquid, stirring all the time until it is fully incorporated, to form a fairly liquid dough.
  6. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and bake in the oven for 50 minutes. Remove from the tin and allow to cook for a further 10 minutes to crisp up the bottom. When cooked, it will sound hollow when tapped on the base. Allow to cool on a wire rack before eating.

IMG_20141004_152820[1] IMG_20141005_135700[1]