food

food

food May 25, 2019

Iranian noodle soup

As the weather turns cooler, the perennial question arises of what to feed my vegetarian friends when they come to dinner. Summer is easy – composed salads, grazing plates, light pastas – but as we move towards winter we often rely on the rich stews...

food May 18, 2019

Pasty treats

Persimmon is a relatively difficult fruit to use fresh. The Western palate prefers it, with its fairly savoury and vegetal flavour, “blet”. Bletting is the process of letting the fruit overripen and ferment in its own skin, therefore transforming...

food May 11, 2019

Pain perdu

There are some seemingly basic dishes that if cooked in a run-of-the-mill way become just that. Run of the mill. Ordinary. French toast is a perfect example. The American version that populates many cafe breakfast menus is a slice of sandwich bread...

food May 4, 2019

Celeriac chawanmushi

Delicate steamed savoury egg custard (chawanmushi) is a common start to a meal in Japan. It is generally served as part of a set with rice, broth, pickles and grilled meats. It’s a huge contrast to my early culinary experiences with custard. As a...

food April 27, 2019

Potato roll

Potatoes are such an excellent marker of the seasons for me. Late winter, and into spring, you will find me carefully lining up my potato “seeds” in egg cartons, their little eyes pointing skyward to start a process only known to potatoes: chitting...

food April 20, 2019

Cullen skink

Traditional Cullen skink is a Gaelic mariners’ dish served more as a soup than a bake, and using haddock as opposed to a smoked river fish. These humble ingredients form a decadent dish. I recently served a version of Cullen skink at a dinner...

food April 13, 2019

Chocolate marquise dacquoise sandwich

Approaching holiday periods involving a lot of entertaining can be a little overwhelming at times. It always pays to have a couple of standby recipes that can be made days in advance, and that keep well, are easy to serve and are absolutely...

food April 6, 2019

Abalone steamed in kelp with black pepper sauce

Over the years, I have witnessed some heinous treatment of abalone to try to make it tender. From rocks to meat mincers, it all seems fairly mediaeval. Personally, I find a little bit of “bite” – a more flattering description of tough – pleasing...

food March 30, 2019

Fried mackerel with rhubarb and capers

Slimy. It’s not a word that sounds great on a menu or on a sign in a fishmonger’s window. No wonder the slimy mackerel has been renamed blue mackerel. But as a marketing ploy, it’s not working with the sporting fishermen’s online bulletin boards...

food March 23, 2019

Twice-cooked turkey wings with black pudding and shiitake mushrooms

Poor old turkey. The bird has been the packhorse of nondescript protein for generations. But years of genetic selection for maximum return and fast growth has rendered the turkey of the wild into what is more akin to a cephalopod. Debeaked and with...

food March 16, 2019

Cured ocean trout on a buckwheat blini with crème fraîche and salmon roe

The success of a meal often comes down to the smallest detail. In the accompanying recipe you will note “a small amount of clarified butter” among the ingredients. It’s a quiet instruction, yet it is pivotal to the dish being the best version of...