I love the idea of a pop up dinner in someone's dining room, probably because I'm a nosey parker. I'd love to open up my living room to see what it would be like but my lounge/dining room is about the size of a telephone box. Laura, Anu and I started talking on Twitter and as it turns out they host pop up dinners at their house in Reading. The meal I went for was Israeli themed; having no knowledge of Israeli food I couldn't wait to find out more about it.
Friday, 25 July 2014
You would have thought that a burger lends itself well to good photo-ability. For some reason when it comes to taking a picture of a burger it never looks quite how I imagine it will. No matter what I try the burgers always shrink leaving even the smallest buns looking far too big. There is either too much or not enough salad so although I make them sort of regularly I rarely blog about them or take a picture. However, when the below recipe came through for Swedish burgers with Västerbottensost cheese I couldn't resist.
Monday, 21 July 2014
Does it get much better than homemade pizza? If you can get the base crispy enough that is. I have been working on my dough and tomato sauce recipe for some time and I think I have finally cracked it. I make the dough fresh then divide it up and freeze in individual bags so I can have pizza whenever. The tomato sauce is made from obscenely ripe tomatoes and just trust me on the fennel and salami combo.
Thursday, 17 July 2014
I don't know about you but I find it difficult to know what to cook when it's hot. I don't want to be hanging around the oven or hob making unnecessary heat but I also don't want to eat cold food all the time. The worst thing about it is having to do the washing up (no dishwasher in my house!) when all you really want to do is sit outside. I think this meal of Greek salad with hummus and pitta bread is a great compromise; there isn't too much clearing up afterwards and the toasted pitta bread means that it's not an entirely cold meal.
Sunday, 13 July 2014
I'm not sure you can ever have too many vegetables in the house at once but at this time of year with the peas in the garden, the veg box and whatever looks tempting at the farmers' market I can find it a little challenging to close the fridge door. You know it's got a bit excessive when your carrot fronds are getting in the way of the door seal. If you find yourself fighting some spinach to reach the butter or battling beans to get to the mayonnaise there's only one thing for it: make a minestrone.
Wednesday, 9 July 2014
We've been so lucky with the weather recently, fingers crossed it continues! Sat outside in the sun on a lovely day there's nothing quite as refreshing as an ice lolly; especially one you can slurp enthusiastically at being ever so proud that you've made it yourself. I find that adding cordial to an ice lolly inevitably results in much stronger concentrations of cordial at the bottom and faint flavour at the top. The added lemon zest in these elderflower lollies means they have flavour throughout.
Friday, 4 July 2014
Scandinavian food interests me; cured salmon, pickles and dark rye are the things that immediately spring to mind. By coincidence I was sent two different crispbreads to try; some from Finn Crisp and some from Plain Tasty so it seemed the perfect opportunity to try and make a Smörgåsbord with a Swedish style salad. Something very different for dinner in the ATIE household.
Sunday, 29 June 2014
I do like a jelly; easy to make, it doesn't need many ingredients, it looks lovely and it makes for great entertainment when trying to serve it into smaller bowls. You might have seen I made some elderflower cordial recently and other than trying it with sparkling water in the evenings this elderflower and blueberry jelly was what I rustled up to take to a Sunday evening BBQ with my parents. A fantastic dessert to make in advance and forget about in the fridge.
Wednesday, 25 June 2014
If you've been reading my blog over the years you'll know I love anything elderflower. This year I was invited to go foraging in the grounds at Audley Inglewood, home to restaurant The Walmesley, and to knock up a batch of homemade elderflower cordial with their head chef Gert Pienaar. It was great to go out to the fields, pick the elderflowers and have a good old chat about food at the same time. I've not made elderflower cordial before; syrup and sugar yes but this was my first cordial attempt.
Sunday, 22 June 2014
Last week I jetted off to Madrid in search of churros, tapas and sunshine. I managed to get three out of three so no complaints from me. Around a two hour flight from London it's far enough to be 'away' but not too far stuck on a plane. Before I went I knew next to no Spanish other than what I had learnt from watching Fawlty Towers so you can imagine my delight when, on arrival at the hotel, the receptionist's name was Manuel. We landed late afternoon, had a quick glass of vino tinto and then got some rest ready to explore the next day.