Bookmarks – 11 April 2015

Carbs et al. Like most years, Alessandro and I spent the Easter bank holiday weekend staying with his parents in a small village not far from Rome. Spending most of the weekend eating (or talking about eating) reminded me again how good Italians are with carbs. Of course there is Pizza, thin and crispy Roman style, or thick and pillowy like they serve it in Naples. But then there are also the thick slabs of sourdough bread to start a meal, slightly charred and topped with a fresh tomato salsa or thin slices of rosemary flecked lardo or even just drizzled with olio nuovo (the beautifully grassy first olive oil of the season), thin strands of homemade tagliatelle like the ones you can see in the picture above (beautifully yellow as Alessandro’s dad made them with duck eggs) – cooked not too long so they retain some bite (al dente) before being thrown into a pan of funghi porcini, or the torn

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Real simple food

Almost every blog I come across these days comes with its own food philosophy, whether it is Paleo, veganism or a diet based on eating raw foods only. Real simple food. The name of my blog and also the closest to what you might call my food philosophy. Yes, I was a vegetarian for a while, even went vegan for a while. But what really works best for me are simple home-cooked dishes, prepared from scratch with whatever I can find at the market. Real food, nothing processed, ideally fresh, seasonal and local produce, prepared quite simply. Just like this pizza. A simple dough, left to prove very very slowly while I was at work, topped with some golden tomatoes, a drizzle of good olive oil, some oregano, a sprinkle of salt and some grated goat’s cheese as well as some fresh basil once cooked. A simple dinner, served with a Corona, the perfect way to celebrate the end of

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Dan Lepard’s flatbread

While I cannot take credit for the recipe for the flatbreads (all credit is due to Dan Lepard), I can take credit for the two awesome topping ideas I came up with recently: first, a flatbread topped with sausage meat and fennel and, secondly, a spicy meatlover’s feast. Fennel sausage flatbread Toppings for 1 flatbread, ideal for sharing and plenty of dinner for greedy eaters like myself 1/2 of the quantity of Dan’s wholemeal flatbread recipe 4 good quality pork sausages, about 5inch long 1.5 tsp fennel seeds 1 bulb fresh fennel, sliced vertically 1 tbsp cream cheese 1 fresh mozzarella ball, sliced thinly 2 garlic cloves Olive oil for frying 1. Once your flatbread dough is ready for us, roll out thinly and place on an oiled baking sheet. Pre-heat your oven to 250 degrees. 2. Heat a small amount of olive oil in a pan and crumble your sausage meat into the pan. Add the garlic, the sliced

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The weekend

After what seemed like a never-ending workweek (only ending around 11pm last night) the weekend is finally here, packed with meeting up with a friend who had a baby just under 3 weeks ago (god he is tiny! And so cute), heading to the Old Vic to see “Democracy”, a play about Willy Brandt’s last few days in power, dinner at a new to me Mexican place in Soho and hanging out with a friend who just got an amazing new job but who will sadly leave London in a few months. A good weekend indeed. Made even better by a trip to the little fruit and vegetable stall from my house – much cheaper than the supermarket and always a great selection of seasonal produce. I walked away with fresh asparagus, fennel (yup, still obsessed), fresh cherries, a watermelon, raspberries, some apricots (the dough for an apricot-frangipane galette is chilling in the fridge already), some deep red tomatoes and

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