Shona made a very fine vegetable stew in the slow cooker a week or so back, with butternut squash, chick peas and saffron as the backbone (sorry for the anti-pun). This seemed an entirely appropriate dish to serve to someone who doesn’t eat anything with a face. So, would that be an aprosoponarian? I’m easy.
- Roast and grind 2 tsp cumin and 2 tsp corriander
- Fry 1 onion, chopped and 2 garlic cloves in 2tbsp olive oil and 1 tbsp butter
- Add 1 cinnamon stick, 1/4 tsp chili, 1/4 tsp saffron threads (soaked), 500g cubed butternut squash, 1 cup soaked chickpeas, 2 cubed potatoes, and 150ml passata
- Cook untill the potatoes are soft
- Add 2 chopped courgettes and 1/2 a preserved lemon, chopped and cook a further 5 mins.
- Chopped parsley to serve.
So whilst Shona got on with the vegetable knife work, I prepared the garnish- leg of lamb on a spit. I haven’t been down to the Fannie Bay butcher for a while; they do sell a very good organic salt bush lamb. Instead I bought a half leg from the local nettle knitters grocers, ‘Greenies’. Other than the waft of incense from the clientele, it’s really very good. So, some sweet smoked paprika , a tight little fire in the clay bbq inside the Weber, a foil catcher to divert the oil from the flames, and wham bam TQM. As a condiment, I went all fusion and mixed some apple cider, chopped mint and rosella jelly. Very good indeed. Raita and couscous to serve. Oh yes, and some barbecued aubergines.
The previous night I had finally gotten round to preparing my superbly aromatic quinces I had also bought from Greenies maybe 3 weeks ago. A number of membrillo recipes suggest cooking the quince in water first then pulping it and then adding a certain proportion of sugar to the pulp. I’m always concerned that the amount of water will vary, so I cooked the quinces whole in a little water to steam through and then took the quincies out to pulp through a mouli legumes. One recipe suggested 450g sugar to 600g fruit. I had 1.8kg of pulp- joy. Sugar and pulp cooked until red, and at this very moment, it is now baking in an oven dish attempting to firm up- it is very easy to burn this on the stove top, a heart breaking event indeed.
On the hunt for quince puddings, I came across a recipe in Elizabeth David’s classic ‘French Provincial Cooking’ for ‘Gallette aux fruits’. She suggests any seasonal fruit such as quince, cherries, apricots can be baked on a rich yeast dough. I’m not sure mango or papaya would work. So with quinces firmly in mind, off we set, bike trailer in tow.
No quinces were to be found. Balls. Well, it is well into late winter down under. Instead I bought some Granny Smith apples (who the hell was Granny Smith?). So, in the event of a very fine discovery, here’s the recipe.
- 3 Granny Smith apples- peeled, cored, and cut into 8
For the dough
- 5oz flour
- 1.5oz soft unsalted butter
- 1/2 tsp yeast
- 1 egg
- 2oz cream mixed with
- 1 egg yolk