Entries in orange (28)


fennel aplenty!

i love fennel and enjoy it in a variety of ways so, when i saw a promotion for a 2.5kg bag of fennel i didn’t think twice, not really knowing how many bulbs to expect. thirteen arrived, and none of them were particularly small!

these two jars were my attempt at some fennel-related pickles – the large jar is slices of blanched fennel which are gently pickling in a mix of cider vinegar, sugar, pink and black peppercorns, fennel seeds and lemon zest, as set out in diana henry’s fabulous salt sugar smoke; the smaller jar is a fennel and orange mostarda courtesy of food52, which has a wonderfully balanced flavour and which i’m looking forward to trying with a variety of things, not least just-cooked mackerel and roast pork!

more fennel recipes will follow as the week goes on…


ofm top twenty: tarta de santiago


i love almond cakes and so i was delighted to see claudia roden’s tarta de santiago as part of the ofm top twenty.  according to roden, “this is a splendid cake which is normally made in a wide cake or tart tin and comes out low, but it is equally good as a thicker cake. i have eaten almond cakes in other parts of spain but this one is special. pilgrims and tourists who visit the great cathedral of santiago de compostela in galicia, where the relics of the apostle saint james are believed to be buried, see the cake in all the windows of every pastry shop and restaurant, decorated with the shape of the cross of the order of santiago.”

so, how did i get on?

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a different kind of beetroot and lentil salad

one of the new cookery books that i bought recently is anna hansen’s the modern pantry. i’m a big fan of anna’s restaurant, the modern pantry, in london and enjoy her imaginative approach to melding flavours from different cuisines to create intense and impactful dishes.

this approach reflects a range of things, including that she grew up in new zealand, was inspired by her danish grandma, embarked on a food career in london (as well as nz and australia) plus her long term links with peter gordon, who is known for having a creative and imaginative approach to cooking; mixing and matching flavours from around the world.

i think this dish reflects the book and her approach to cooking incredibly well – beetroot and lentils is fairly predictable. add to that mirin, miso and soy and the dish tilts towards japan, but then pomegranate molasses are added which sends it spinning off in an entirely new direction. fresh mint and orange zest add two more strong flavours which seem to come out of the blue, but just add more layers of deliciousness.

i originally made this to accompany a slow-roasted shoulder of lamb. leftovers were eaten on their own or as part of a salad, once with hunks of melty gorgonzola and once with sliced of fried halloumi. all worked incredibly well.

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apricot stone sour

this is a great drink for the cold, gloomy and seemingly never ending winter that we’re having – it has a fresh summeriness that hints of the long warm days that are yet to come.

mix 2 shots apricot brandy, ½ shot freshly squeezed orange juice, 1 shot freshly squeezed lime juice and ¼ shot sugar syrup. shake with ice, strain and garnish with a slice of apricot (if they are in season!).


blood orange curd


the marmalade is delicious but at the moment it is this blood orange curd that i am smitten with. the colour is gorgeous – a combination of the vibrant blood oranges and burford brown egg yolks, which are always wonderfully orange.

this is the first recipe i have made using diana henry’s salt sugar smoke, a book which focuses on “how to preserve fruit, vegetables, meat and fish” and which is full of incredible sounding treats. pear and chestnut jam. apricot and lavender jam. chilli sherry. earl grey tea jelly. georgia. plum sauce. quince sorbet. whisky and brown sugar cured gravalax. i could go on!

this curd recipe is different from ones i’ve made before in that it only uses the egg yolks – i am used to using both yolks and whites – and i wonder if this is why it has a slightly softer set than i am used to. or i just impatient an didn’t cook it long enough.

either way, it looks beautiful and i’m planning to use it in a victoria sponge, with mascarpone, before long. i also have thoughts of eton mess and pavlova.

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