Tag: 1970’s recipes

Rumanian Herb Omelette

Oops…I P’ed too early last week.  Which, although unfortunate is a lot better than peeing too early!  So, tonight we’re taking a step back in the alphabet along with our step back in time and heading back to the letter O in The A-Z of Cooking.  The chapter I skipped is called “On Your Own” and is, of course, meals for one.  I eat a lot of meals on  my own so I was looking forward to trying some of the recipes starting with a Rumanian Herb Omelette.

Rumanian Herb OmeletteIt may surprise you to know that my knowledge of Rumanian (Romanian?) food is…well…sketchy…would be an overstatement!  Non-existent except for a herb omelette would be another.  But how authentic is the herb omelette?  I turned to the keeper of all knowledge aka Google.

This article on Romanian Food doesn’t mention an omelette. It does have a beef salad cake though!

No omelette on the Wiki either.

This wiki does.  But there doesn’t seem to be anything specifically Romanian about it.  In fact, it seems like a fairly bog standard omelette recipe. 

So, now feeling somewhat older but none the wiser, here is the recipe from The A-Z of Cooking.

Rumanian Herb Omelette Recipe2

 

The addition of sour cream seems suitably Eastern European and added a nice flavour to the eggs and herbs.  The flour?  Hmm…I’m not entirely sure about it.  The texture of the omelette became slightly more pancakey than a normal omelette which was not unpleasant, but not altogether necessary.  Maybe, in this age of cro-nuts and cruffins I should be embracing the concept of a new hybrid food a little more enthusiastically but I’m not sure the world needs an omecake or a panlette!

Rumanian Herb Omelette2Having said that, this was a tasty, quick and easy meal for one and perfect with a side salad.  Mine was a very simple chopped avocado, shaved fennel and balsamic vinegar. 

I also used tarragon, parsley and chives as my herbs because (smirk smirk) I have them all growing in my garden.  You can pretty much use what you have or what you like but this was a deee-licious mix!

Okay, back on track now and next time we’re looking at Q.  Will it be 100 things to do with a quince?  Quirky food?  Quiet food?  Find out next time!

Have a great week!

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Potato Almond Balls

When a chapter called Nuts about Nourishment contains a recipe for Deep Fried Mashed Potato Balls, you know it has to be 1977.  And that we are about to delve into The A-Z of Cooking.  Potato Almond Balls.  I was so excited about these, I ate salad for a week to pre-compensate for the delicious calorific overload. 

And then they didn’t work.

potato-almond-balls
The problem was that the egg and almond crust split in many places…and when it did, the mashed potato kind of disintegrated. So in a lot of instances I ended up with the almond crust and not much else.  Where they remained whole, they were totally delicious sprinkled with a bit of smoked paprika and dipped in some of my favorite green sauce.

I’m putting the failure of the balls down to the wrong temperatures.  Either the balls were too cold or too warm or the oil was.  Is it significant that The A-Z of Cooking has no pictures of this dish?  It is possible that their Potato Almond Balls also broke into bits? 

Here’s the recipe for anyone who wants it, I hope you have better luck than me!

potato-almond-balls-2

To counteract the effect of deep fried potato balls (and because I had no other photos) I thought I would give you all an update on my attempts at the C25K running program.  Today I started week 7 of the program and ran for 25 minutes which was not only the longest time but also the furthest distance I have done so yay me!

Mind you, this is probably a very apt description of both my pace and my style:

Personally, given my new obsession with the ‘My Favorite Murder Podcast,, this might well become my mantra:

And this is probably closer to the truth:;

Next time in The A-Z we are moving onto O for some “Old Fashioned Favourites”.  I was hoping to be done with it by the end of the year but given it is nearly December (how the hell did that happen?) it seems unlikely.  I’m now aiming for end of summer.

Have a fabulous week everyone!

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K is for Lasagne?

Hanging around?  Nothing to do but frown?  Rainy days and Mondays getting you down?

What you need to cheer you up body and soul my friends is some comfort food.  And the best comfort food in existence is home-made lasagne. It MUST be home-made!  The horrible facsimile that is food court  / take away lasagne ( you know the one – ten layers of pasta with only a layer of a thin tomato sauce separating them, with maybe a tablespoon of meat in the entire dish, no bechamel to speak of, a glut of cheap and nasty Parmesan on top and a pool of oil at the bottom – will only further deepen your despondency and ennui with the world). 

Lasagne al forno4jpg

No, what you need to soothe your soul is a  rich meat ragu, lots of cheese, oodles of bechamel and for a really retro kick, curly lasagne noodles.  Hallelujah and praise the angels.  THAT lasagne is heaven in a baking dish.  And if it doesn’t put a glint in your eye and a spring in your step, then you’re dead already!

Lasagne al forno2I have a Garfield like love of lasagne but an equally strong aversion to making it. Here’s why

  • Usually, by the time I have made the ragu, I’m either tired or hungry (or both) so I turn it into a Bolognese.
  • Lasagne is  a mofo of a thing to make – half a day at least, and that’s if you multitask!
  • The fussiest eater in the world does not eat anything with white sauce so no bechamel for him
  • You cannot make lasagne for one.  Or two.  It’s a four person dish at an absolute minimum.
  • Even my love of lasagne does not equal eating it everyday for a week. 

Lasagne al forno3So I don’t feel I am wrong in saying that the last time I made lasagne was probably in the early noughties.  So I  was excited to see that the very first recipe in the K section of The A-Z of Cooking (1977) was for lasagne. The time had certainly come for me to make it again and even more, I was delighted to discover why it was listed under K and not L of Lasagne or P for Pasta.  Are you ready?

  • K is for Kitchen Aids
  • A freezer is a kitchen aid
  • Lasagne freezes like a dream!  Who knew?

Lasagne al fornoSo, without further ado, here’s the recipe.  I made some minor changes, instead of water in the ragu I added equal parts of beef stock and red wine. And also cooked the lasagne, then cut it into individual servings, wrapped them up and froze them.  They can then be heated in an oven or microwave for lunch or a no fuss supper.

Lasagne RecipeNow you have the recipe, why no make and freeze some lasagne –  because you know that a rainy day or Monday will come around all too soon!

Hope you are having a great week!

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Spaghetti Eggcetera – 1977 vs 2016

Imagine a room lit only by an overhead light.  Facing each other off across a dining table are 1977’s The A-Z of Cooking and me.  With a flourish worthy of a hot stepping disco move straight out of Saturday Night Fever, the A-Z of Cooking, looking like a young and studly John Travolta  places a dish of pasta onto the table, right into the beam of light. 

“I’m calling it Spaghetti Etcetera” It says, with a sneer worthy of a Sex Pistol flipping the bird to the Queen.

Spaghetti Etcetera

I stare at the pasta.  “Looks good”

“Good it tastes too” says the A-Z of Cooking which has now transformed into Yoda.

“But I will take your Spaghetti Etcetera and top it with an egg.  And I will call it Spaghetti Eggcetera”.

Spaghetti Eggcetera“I’m not  finished with you” says The A_Z of Cooking and slinks away with all the dignity of the King of Rock and Roll, Mr Elvis Presley dying on a toilet.

And that my friends, is how I defeated 1977 in the battle of “Let’s Give a Plate of Pasta The Most Stupid Name Ever”.

Spaghetti Etcetera2

Spaghetti Etcetera is from the Informal Suppers Chapter of The A-Z.  Which is maybe why they chose such a lackadaisical name.  Then again, the other recipes in the chapter aren’t called Pizza with Stuff on it, Pork Whatever or Who Gives A Toss Potato Salad so who knows what the thought behind this name was. 

Regardless of the silly name it is delicious.!

The Etcetera is bacon, black olives, mushrooms, anchovies, onions,garlic and parsley.  Otherwise known as the Magnificent Seven of good things to have with pasta.   This was a really quick and easy weeknight supper- you can make the topping whilst the pasta cooks so you can go from fridge to table in around 20 minutes!   Top with a mix of Parmesan cheese, fresh parsley and some chilli flakes, you have a delicious  dish! 

It’s so good –  salty crispy bacon, salty and briny olives, earthy, silky mushrooms, sweet caramelised onions and garlic, fresh and bright parsley with  some umami depth from the anchovies.  Add some bite from the chilli, some more umami and a touch of creaminess from the  Parmesan and you have a dish jam packed full of flavour!

Spaghetti Etcetera3But if you want to take to an entirely new level, why not add an egg and turn it into a Spaghetti Eggcetera?

I used a fried egg but a poached egg would work just as well.  I am also about to experiment with steaming eggs which I think would work really well here too.  Alternatively, if you are runny yolk phobic, you could crack the entire egg into the hot, drained spaghetti, a la Carbonara, so the heat from the spaghetti cooks the egg. It will taste delicious, but will not look as pretty.  Also don’t read the next sentence.  Come back after the photo for the recipe.

Okay,  now those weirdo’s scared of runny eggs are gone,  can I tell the rest of you that breaking into that yolk and then mixing it through the cheese and bacon and mushrooms is a thing of beauty and has an almost addictive joy to it. 

Spaghetti Eggcetera2

 

Spaghetti Eggcetera
Serves 4
A super tasty, super speedy pasta dish, perfect for a weeknight supper.
Write a review
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Ingredients
  1. 200g spaghetti
  2. 200g mushrooms, sliced
  3. 2 onions, thinly sliced
  4. 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  5. 8 anchovy fillets, chopped
  6. 6 bacon rashers, chopped
  7. 16 black olives, stoned
  8. 4 tbsp parsley, chopped plus more for garnish
  9. 4 eggs
  10. 3 tbsp olive oil,
  11. Parmesan cheese to garnish
  12. Chilli flakes to garnish
Instructions
  1. Cook the spaghetti in boiling salted water until al dente.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the bacon, anchovy fillets and onions in the oil until caramelised around ten minutes.
  3. Add the garlic, mushrooms and parsley, cover and cook for another five minutes until the mushrooms are cooked through.
  4. Whilst the mushrooms are cooking poach or fry your eggs, leaving the egg yolk runny.
  5. When the spaghetti is cooked, drain it well, return to the pan and stir through the bacon and mushroom.
  6. Serve onto four plates, top with the egg
  7. Garnish with Parmesan cheese, chilli flakes and fresh parsley.
  8. Enjoy.
Notes
  1. Don't worry if you do not like anchovies, they break down leaving absolutely no fishy taste at all.
  2. Runny egg phobics - break your eggs into the drained spaghetti at step 5, just before adding the bacon and mushrooms. The heat from the spaghetti will cook the eggs as you stir the ingredients through.
Adapted from The A-Z of Cooking
Adapted from The A-Z of Cooking
Retro Food For Modern Times http://www.retrofoodformoderntimes.com/
I’m skipping the next chapter because it’s Jam and I am not much of a jam eater let alone maker.  Never fear though, I’m not completely ignoring the letter J.  Because coming up sometime in the not too distant future will be a meal – Just For Two.  The selections here are all pretty good – there’s a pepper steak, hamburgers, tuna provencal, sesame chicken and gammon with pineapple and corn sauce.  Who knows where we will land on that.  Stay tuned and have a lovely weekend!

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Lamb Kebabs Without A Herbed Sauce

The original name of this recipe in The A-Z of Cooking is lamb kebabs with herbed sauce.  Except I needed a bowl to make the salad and in a moment of madness threw out the marinade so I could wash and reuse the bowl it was in. 

About ten minutes later I went to make the sauce…”Hmmm…better get started on that sau…..oh….oh….” The marinade which is the basis for the sauce…oh, who am I kidding, it is the sauce, heated up was at the bottom of my bin bag and now covered in onion skins, an empty can of cannellini beans and other detritus.  Oops. 

There was no yogurt to make some more and really, any sauce/ marinade I had made in the moment would have also lacked the lambiness that would have come from marinating those chops for a good 24 hours. 

Lamb Kebabs

Despite the lack of sauce, the chops had sat in the herby marinade for ages and I made not one but two of Sabrina Ghayour’s Salads from Persiana to go with the kebabs and they both had heaps of herbs, so I’m calling “H is for Herbs” done.  It’s just a shame I made these before the start of the Persiana Project so these will not count towards my numbers.

These lamb kebabs are delish!!!.  I used lamb chops instead of diced lamb because that’s what I had.  I also really wanted the meat to stay tender and I thought that rendering the fat off the chops as they cooked would do that.  Combined with the marinade, this worked a treat.  Even though they were fairly big chunks of meat the chops were incredibly juicy and tender.

Lamb Kebabs2The lamb kebabs were a colourful, fun meal and quick to cook and so pretty with all the different vegetable colours. I will definitely make these again. And maybe even make the sauce next time – I’ll keep you posted!

Lamb Kebabs3 The veg I used were mushrooms, red onion, red peppers out of a jar, cherry tomatoes and green olives because that was what I had on hand.  Zucchini would be nice here or eggplant or tiny par boiled potatoes – really whatever veggies you like could be used!

The marinade / sauce contained tomato juice which seemed weird to me.  I would have normally used tomato paste. 

And with the lamb kebabs we are done with H in the A-Z of Cooking! There was also H is for Home Baking but I already made the brioche here.

Here’s the recipe for the lamb kebabs, I would love to know if you make these with the sauce!

Lamb Kebabs 1970

The two salads I made from  Persiana were:

Turkish White Bean Salad

Tomato Salad With Pomegranate Molasses (PS,this links to an awesome blog which you should all be reading)

Have a wonderful week!

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