“Carrot and Cardamom Soup with Ricotta Dumplings” from “A Year of Good Eating”

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One of the many good things* about Meat Free Monday is it forces us to try different things.

While I do love a good hearty soup while we’re in the throes of winter (Editor’s Note: This was a week ago, when London really was winter-like. Now, not so much.) This soup has the added twist of dumplings in it, made by combining flour, fine oatmeal, ricotta, parsley and butter. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I thought it would be a bit different from our usual throes of winter soup fare, so I was willing to give it a go.

We all loved it. Andrew, 16, even requested that it go into the regular rotation of Meat Free Monday dishes, he liked it so much. Tim was surprised at how filling it was. Nicholas liked the dumplings. Having eaten the leftovers for lunch, I can tell you that it’s fantastic warmed up a few days later, too.

Yum. Yum. Yum. Another winner from Nigel.

*Some of the good things: Good for us. Good for our planet. Forces us, at least one day a week, to not look to meat as the starring player in our dinner. Did I say Good for Us? It bears repeating: Good for us.

Want to make this yourself? Find the original recipe from The Guardian, found by clicking on this link.

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“Carrot and Cardamom Soup with Ricotta Dumplings” from “A Year of Good Eating”

“Quick Spiced Rice” from Nigel Slater’s “Eat”

Anna: What do you think of this?

Peter: It’s not bad!

Anna: I think it should be more moist. And that’s my fault because I got you to do the rice slightly ahead of time. It dried up while it sat waiting for me to get out of the shower.

Peter: I don’t mind too much.

Anna: It’s quite nice at first. The way the rice is cooked with the red curry paste works. But I think the mouthfuls get a bit boring after a while. Which is no bad thing as it means I’m not going to eat as much.

Peter: The edamame beans don’t help. They are a bit worthy.

Anna: They are very good for you though. Would you eat this again?

Peter: Yes, although it might benefit from the addition of some meat!

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“Quick Spiced Rice” from Nigel Slater’s “Eat”

“Early Autumn Cornish Pasties” from “Jamie’s Great Britain”

Andrew (12): I like this very much. I can’t fault it in any way.

Tim: How does it compare to Goddard’s Pies? (Editor’s Note: We faithfully buy Goddard’s Pies every weekend for lunch at Greenwich Market. We especially love the cheese and onion. Not a Cornish pasty, but delicious just the same.)

Andrew: Goddard’s Pies are very good, but these are also very good.

Nicholas (8): Goddard’s Pies are better.

Andrew: You’re digging your own grave!

Tim: It’s Halloween! He’s getting into the spirit of things by digging his own grave!

Maureen: I like it a lot more than I thought I would. I wasn’t sure about baking the skirt steak– I didn’t think it would cook completely– but it worked.

Continue reading ““Early Autumn Cornish Pasties” from “Jamie’s Great Britain””

“Early Autumn Cornish Pasties” from “Jamie’s Great Britain”

“Butternut Squash, Chilli & Coconut Soup” from “Bill’s Everyday Asian”

Tim: What do you think?

Maureen: I am not a fan of this. It’s not disaster, but equally, it’s not very good.

Tim: It doesn’t seem like a dinner to me.

Maureen: Soup for dinner is absolutely fine, but this is too thin to be substantial.

Tim: That’s what I mean.

Continue reading ““Butternut Squash, Chilli & Coconut Soup” from “Bill’s Everyday Asian””

“Butternut Squash, Chilli & Coconut Soup” from “Bill’s Everyday Asian”

“Panzanella Agli Ortaggi in Agrodolce” from “Two Greedy Italians”

Otherwise known as Sweet and Sour Bread Salad.

Maureen: I can’t believe we’re not at the state dinner with the Obamas at Buckingham Palace. Instead we’re eating this.

Tim: Frankly, it’s an outrage.

Maureen: You’d think they would select some good Americans living in London– like us!– to attend. Instead, who makes the cut? Tom Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson. How is that fair? So we’re not having Windsor lamb with basil. We’re having panzanella with a difference. What do you think?

Tim: I like it.

Maureen: Really? I’m surprised. Do you remember the last time I made panzanella? It was a Jamie Oliver recipe, out of his Italy book, and he said it would be a quick and easy dinner. Instead we ended up eating in the dark on the patio at 11 p.m. Not a triumph.

Tim: This is different because it’s just sauteed vegetables. It’s very nice.

Continue reading ““Panzanella Agli Ortaggi in Agrodolce” from “Two Greedy Italians””

“Panzanella Agli Ortaggi in Agrodolce” from “Two Greedy Italians”