Anna: Well this is a perfect prepare-ahead meal. It was all ready for you boys to cook while I went for my long run this evening.
Peter: We didn’t need to start cooking it until you were back and in the shower to be honest.
Ian: I think you will find the chicken ‘gorgeously singed’ but tender within.
Anna: Indeed. It’s very nice indeed. I have fond memories of sharwarma chicken. It was the only thing I could eat when I had morning sickness during my first pregnancy. I used to get it in a wrap for lunch. A couple of times a week.
Peter: Yes it’s very good. Everything is very colourful on the plate.
Anna: The puree has split a bit though. We probably reheated it a little too vigorously.
Ian: I take responsibility for that.
Anna: I’ll definitely be making this again!
Nicholas (10): Turkey meatballs! Hooray!
Maureen: Yes, turkey meatballs certainly seem to be having their moment in the sun. Between this, and the ones we had from “Jersualem” and the ones from Gwenyth Paltrow, we’ve had our fair share. What do you think?
Nicholas: I like them.
Tim: Me too.
Maureen: But they could do with some sort of dip. Maybe yogurt with sumac or hummus or something, but it seems to be missing something.
Tim: You’re right. A dip would be nice. Maybe Ottolenghi has spoiled us because he has so many nice things to go with his mains.
Maureen: What do you think of the chickpea salad?
Nicholas: I don’t like it.
Maureen: I expected that. There’s cayenne pepper and sumac in there. That’s a lot of flavour for one boy, especially you.
Tim: I like it, though.
Maureen: So do I. I’m pretty sure I’ll be making this again. Yum.
If you would like to try this for yourself, find the recipe by clicking on this sentence. Ah, the wonders of the Interweb.
Peter: Wow. That’s a big pile of chickpeas. Would you like to inflate this hot air balloon?
Anna: You don’t chickpeas as an excuse. It’s not just chickpeas anyway. There’s a very large amount of squid here too.
Peter: Yes, I like this. I see we have another Asian-type recipe from Bill. It looks Asian. It’s on a lettuce leaf.
Anna: Actually it has ras el hanout and preserved lemons in it. So it’s more North African than Asian really.
Peter: I guess that would explain the chickpeas. But not the squid. Is it a fusion?
Anna: I suppose so, yes. Did you actually like it?
Peter: Yes. It was light but wholesome.
Anna: I think this is a very interesting way to do squid. And I’m always looking for new ways to do squid.
Peter: But was it “easy”?
Anna: Yes it was. First recipe a success!
Peter: This reminds me of that rice you used to get in a bag.
Anna: Funny you should say that…
Peter: Did it come in a bag?
Anna: No, but she describes the rice as retro. I think that’s the word she uses. Does it taste 70s to you?
Peter: I was on baby food in the 70s, don’t know about you…..
Anna: Not for all of the 70s.
Peter: I was a late developer.
Anna: That explains a lot. Back to the fish.
Peter: It was a nice, light supper.
Anna: I was a bit worried when the recipe called for 2 tablespoons of cumin seeds for the rice. I thought it must have been a typo, but I followed the recipe anyway and it worked. And we’ve got leftovers for lunch tomorrow too.
Anna: Tonight I was having my Ogilvy ladees round for dinner, and what a happy coincidence that we’re doing the Ottolenghi book this month as Tiff and Kate D are veggie!
Kate W: I’m not.
Anna: No, but you’ll have to pretend you are for tonight. There are only enough sausages for Peter. Anyway, choosing a menu was actually quite hard once I got down to it, but I settled on “Hummus with ful” (or ‘you crazy fool’ as it became known over the evening) and “Sweetcorn polenta”. I chose the hummus for two reasons: because it would be nice to eat slowly while drinking and chatting, and because I’d been introduced to ful in the last year by a work colleague and I loved it. Plus, Tiff has lived in the Middle East so I figured she could give an honest opinion.
Tiff: I will.
Anna: The polenta was a bit of a random choice. Not something I would ever go for in a million years, but in for a penny as they say. It wasn’t until I started cooking that I realised that this was going to be a meal of four mushes. Four slightly different coloured mushes.
Kate D: We’re in the mood for mush! Continue reading “A vegetarian feast of four mushes from “Plenty””