Gochujang chicken wings with sesame quick pickled cucumbers

tumblr_o14h1ha8hw1svm3nro1_1280

Does my blog need yet another chicken wing recipe? Admittedly, the answer’s probably no, but here we are. These recipes are quick, easy and the results are delicious, and this one’s no exception–pop the into the oven, make the easy gochujang-based sauce whilst the wings cook, and then gobble them up. So what more could you ask for really?

These wings are somewhat spicy, sightly tangy, and we chose to serve them as they are with just a quick sesame cucumber pickle, to take the edge off that heat.

Feeds 2 for a quick & light lunch. Serve up with some rice if you want to bulk it up a bit. Read More

Advertisements

Harissa & rose water chicken wings with spicy mint yoghurt dip

DSC_0948

My family just loves wings. Partly because they’re usually pretty quick and easy, unless you’re going down the fried route (and even that doesn’t necessarily take too long), but mostly because they’re delicious of course. If you’re a person who hates eating meat on the bone, then there might be a problem. But in my opinion, you should try and change that hatred, cause so far you’re actually doing yourself a disfavour and missing out big time.

DSC_0950

These wings are an awesome combo of spicy, sweet and sticky. The rose water is mild, like a slight afternote, so there’s no soapy flavour here at all. If it really messes with your mind to have rose water in this dish, leave it out, I guess…though I do recommend you give it a go, just the once.

Serves 2-3, as a light lunch
Adapted from hereRead More

Balsamic roasted carrots with carrot top gremolata

This is a very simple side dish for today’s recipe, but isn’t it pretty? And it tastes pretty great, which always helps, I guess! I’m always trying to think of new ways to make vegetables more exciting (aren’t we all?), particularly since in our family, I try to downplay any meat quantities on our plates (fish, on the other hand, is allowed to be let loose in any shape or size). Therefore, I usually attempt to make two side dishes alongside to not only make us less aware of the lessened meat quantity, but to make things a more rounded out meal all the same.

Oh, and unless it’s sweet potatoes, potato-y things like mash do not count. Particularly not with the way we make mash — just because you could make something like mash a lot healthier, doesn’t mean you always would 😛

But in all seriousness, it’s pretty simple. Balsamic and roast veg pretty much always guarantee great things. Add a garlicky gremolata, and we’re just adding a bit more greatness. Who doesn’t want that? Not to mention, we’re being all eco-friendly and all what with using the carrot tops for our gremolata, therefore cutting down on waste. Basically…just give this recipe a gold star already.

You’ll probably get a lot more gremolata than you need/want for your carrots, but treat it a little like pesto and slather it on chicken, toasted bread, fried eggs, and the whole excess gremolata thing isn’t precisely a problem…

Serves 4 as a side.  Read More

Bacon jam

DSC_8335

There was a time when bacon jam seemed inescapable. I think it was roughly the same time period as the craze of baconnaise, but the days of bacon-filled condiments kind of blur together in my mind. But seriously, this stuff was everywhere. You just couldn’t get away from it. Although I did think it sounded interesting at the time, I never ever bought a jar of either condiment. I never looked up a recipe. I just sort of acknowledged its constant presence, and kept on going.

Now, I sort of understand the craze. I’m sure if I had made this recipe back then, I’d have been one of those pushing its popularity. Bacon jam is pretty good. Sure, it’s like you can feel your arteries clogging up, but the stuff is great on toast, and I’m sure it would be an awesome addition to some freshly cooked waffles for brunch.

DSC_8354

So here’s my recipe, which I think is pretty awesome as is. I have seen notes about pulsing the bacon jam into a finer texture, to more like that which you’ll find sold in jars at the supermarket, but I like the slightly coarser texture.  Read More

Soy & ginger chicken wings with pickled radishes

They’re certainly messy, but I do like making (and eating) chicken wings. They feel a bit like bar food, but you can pick up a pack of like 20 of them for almost nothing here in England, and they make a great family lunch for all of us, and all things considered, don’t take all that long. I think they’re more popular over in the States, but the UK is slowly catching on in my opinion, since the town close to us has chicken wings popping up on menus all over the place these days.

(One thing that does confuse me though, is that I’ve seen the phrase “boneless chicken wings” (mainly on America-centric websites) and surely then it just becomes a chicken nugget?? It’s just one of those weird little things that niggle me ever since I’ve seen it)

These are just marinated and grilled in a simple soy, ginger, garlic and honey mixture, which is slightly salty and sweet, and served with a quick home-made radish pickle that pickles as you cook the chicken. Obviously, you’ll get the best results if you marinate the chicken wings overnight, but don’t sweat it if you find you’re starting barely an hour before you want to eat. Just make sure  to glaze the chicken wings constantly as you BBQ them (which I recommend over the oven, because that BBQ flavour is something you can’t cheat at).

Serves 2-3 as a light lunch. Read More

Classic pesto

DSC_7059

So, perhaps I’m just behind everyone on this, but I have recently discovered the sheer beauty of making your own pesto. It’s power is not to be underestimated. This stuff was incredible. Maybe I’ve been lagging behind on this (and duh, freshly made was always going to be better than store bought…but this much better? Wow), but I’m now dedicating my time to spread the word. Because, yes. Delicious stuff.

DSC_7072

I followed a tip of only very, very, very lightly toasting the pine nuts for use, to keep them creamy in the pesto rather than adding a nuttiness. Now, I love the sound of a nutty pesto, but I’m glad I stayed true to the tip because this was beautiful. Slightly cheesy, full of flavour and yes, that creaminess, despite the rather granular look of the pesto.

However, I should note; I love the taste of garlic, even the intensity of it raw. If this scares you a little, or you’re just plain not a fan, take it down to half a clove, or even skip it altogether if you must.

This can be made in a food processor, though I recommend a pestle and mortar, if only for a smaller cleaning job!

Should make enough to use for a pasta dish for four, but if you multiply the quantities, it will store well in a sterilised jar with some olive oil poured on the top, if kept in the fridge.

3 handfuls of fresh basil, rinsed, dried and finely chopped
1 handful of pine nuts, very finely toasted (keep more if needed to taste)
1 clove of garlic, finely minced
olive oil to taste
4 tbsp of grated parmesan cheese, or more to taste
Salt and pepper

Pound the pine nuts and the basil together in a pestle and mortar. Add the garlic clove, and keep pounding. Add the parmesan, and a lug of oil — stir in just enough to get the mixture to start binding together. Season to taste, and add more cheese, oil or pine nuts according to what you think tastes good., both in flavour and texture. Then, you’re ready to go!

It’s great for pasta, for topping meats and fish, or even just spreading on some toast. And of course, this is a very simple and classical take on pesto — there’s ones using walnuts, kale, and more. Do you have a favourite?

Honey & rosemary venison carpaccio

DSC_6298-2
This is such a simple dish to make, and takes very little time overall. It makes a lovely starter for a dinner party, or even a wonderful accompaniment with a fresh salad. I’ve also tried variations upon the marinade, including; crushed juniper berries, rosemary, crushed garlic and olive oil crushed juniper berries, sage, dried thyme, and olive oil Most have worked very well, so take the guidelines, and play with the flavours! I think the honey here lends a lovely sweetness that cuts against the richness of the meat. Makes a starter enough for 4-5 people.

DSC_6291-2 Read More