“Pasta with Mackerel, Marsala and Pine nuts” from “Nigellissima”

Peter: This is very sweet for a pasta.

Anna: Did you not think that the saltiness of the capers and the mackerel off-set the sweetness?

Peter: I guess so. It was nice because mackerel can be quite a strong flavour and this combination of ingredients tempered it.

Anna: Well you know how much I love salty and sweet combos, so I have to say that I’m a fan of this recipe. And it was very quick and easy, just as Nigella said it would be.

Peter: I like a good bit of mackerel too, so I’m happy to have it again.

Anna: That’s good then, as I’m already planning when we’re next going to have it!

If you would like to try this recipe for yourself click here.

“Pasta with Mackerel, Marsala and Pine nuts” from “Nigellissima”

“Fagiolini e Compagni” and “Patate Arraganate” from “Two Greedy Italians”

For those of you without an Italian-English Dictionary to hand, we had “Green Beans and Company” (or Green Beans, Buttered Breadcrumbs and Pine Nuts) and Sliced Roasted Potatoes with Tomato, Oregano and Basil.

We ate these with Veal Chops with Lemon and Capers that was in Saturday’s Guardian. (As luck would have it, I bought the veal chops BEFORE I knew the newspaper had a recipe I could use.) The veal was delicious and everyone loved it, even the boys.

Nicholas (8), pointing to the green beans: What’s this yellow stuff?

Maureen: What? The breadcrumbs fried in obscene amounts of butter with pine nuts? That “yellow stuff”?

Nicholas: Yes. I think it’s a little bit like eating rocks.

Tim: You’re mental. It’s delicious!

Maureen: I totally agree. I think this is absolutely delicious.

Andrew (11): The green beans are nice.

Maureen: What do you like about them?

Andrew: Because they’re simple.

Tim: I think what you mean is because they’re coated in breadcrumbs and butter.

Continue reading ““Fagiolini e Compagni” and “Patate Arraganate” from “Two Greedy Italians””

“Fagiolini e Compagni” and “Patate Arraganate” from “Two Greedy Italians”

“Saffron-scented Chicken Pilaf” and “Slut-red Raspberries in Chardonnay Jelly” from “Forever Summer”

Miles: I like the chicken! But not the rice. I tried it but I didn’t like it. It was gross!

Ella: The chicken is amazing! Yummy! I’ve almost finished it. I have now. There was some rice on it and it went under my wobbly tooth. And now it’s hurting.

Miles: Ella, you don’t keep on eating protein. But I do. I’m going to grow bigger than you!

Ella: I don’t care. I like being short. You can fit through things that tall people can’t. I don’t want to be tall, otherwise I’ll have to be a defender on the netball team. I prefer being wing attack. It’s funner.

Anna: I liked being goalkeeper. You just stand about for a bit.

Ella: Mmm, the rice is good! I don’t know why, but it kind of tastes creamy.

Anna: Can you see it’s yellow? What do you think had made it yellow?

Ella: Eggs? Bananas? Lemon sorbet? Lemons? Is it an animal, a vegetable or a mineral?

Kirstin: A vegetable. Something called saffron.

Tom: It costs more than gold, pound for pound.

Anna: It’s one of the most prized spices in the world. Mmmm, this is good. How easy was it?

Kirstin: Really easy.

Ella: Can we grow saffron in our garden?

Continue reading ““Saffron-scented Chicken Pilaf” and “Slut-red Raspberries in Chardonnay Jelly” from “Forever Summer””

“Saffron-scented Chicken Pilaf” and “Slut-red Raspberries in Chardonnay Jelly” from “Forever Summer”

“Pappardelle with Courgettes, Sultanas and Pine nuts” from “Forever Summer”

Anna: I’m sneaking this one in whilst Kirstin is still away involving, as it does, a dried fruit.  In a savoury dish.  Which we know is vorboten in her culinary world.  But I do love this flavour combination myself and this pasta dish really reminded me of the Veneziana pizza from Pizza Express I loved when I was a teenager.

Peter: I’m getting sweet, and nutty, and salty…

Anna: All good things.  This is definitely a great way to use courgettes at this time of year and a lovely vegetarian dinner for a meat-free night, that doesn’t make carnivores feel deprived.  Peter didn’t even make a comment about it being veggie.

Peter: I didn’t.  Hang on, I can feel myself passing-out….

Anna: I did come a bit undone by not reading the recipe properly beforehand as the courgettes have to fry for a good half hour – 45 mins.  But that aside it’s as simple as anything.  One gripe, Nigella has got her pasta quantities off in this recipe.  She’s not shy of a big portion, by her own admission, but I’d say you need twice as much as she advises here. 

Peter: Luckily you hadn’t tipped the water out yet so I could nip back and cook more.  My bowl was looking a little empty.

Anna: Otherwise this was very yummy. We’ll be doing this again, without Kirstin obviously.

“Pappardelle with Courgettes, Sultanas and Pine nuts” from “Forever Summer”