Bolly Good Sauce & Easy Egg-Fried Pilau Rice

Chilli Drops 'Bolly Good' Sauce with Egg Fried Pilau Rice
Chilli Drops ‘Bolly Good’ Sauce with Egg Fried Pilau Rice

You know those kind of Saturday afternoons… not much going on, rainy and horrible outside… you can get a little, well, bored. In my world, boredem is pretty much synonymous with ‘peckish’. As I found myself in this situation last week, I thought a great way to spice-up this otherwise-boring afternoon, is to get a little creative in the kitchen. So here’s what I came up with… Egg Fried Pilau Rice with some super tasty hot-sauce from the wonderful Chilli Drops!

Chilli Drops sauce is just one of the 8 artisan goodies in my Artisan Selection box from Compare Your Artisan. If you’re a foodie like me and you fancy picking up an Artisan Selection box for yourself, visit their website for all the details (you wont be disappointed, as the service is fantastic): compareyourartisan.com.

This meal is a super-easy throw together, a kind of ‘cheats’ recipe if you like. It would be a great accompaniment to almost any Indian curry, or as a meal for one when you’re in a rush and are just looking to use up random items in the fridge. For a veggie option – just skip the ham.

Serves 1 as a whole meal, or 2 as a side dish. Takes about 10 minutes.

what you need:

  • a generous dollop of Chilli Drops, ‘Bolly Good’ hot sauce: www.chillidrops.co.uk
  • 1 pack of Veetee’s Heat & Eat Pilau Rice: www.veetee.com (available in most super-markets)
  • 1 free range egg (any size will do), gently beaten
  • 2 handfuls of frozen petits pois or garden peas
  • splash of ground-nut oil (or any other flavourless cooking oil)
  • splash of light soy sauce
  • handful of ham, chopped into small chunks
  • half an orange pepper, diced into small cubes
  • 1 shallot, diced into small cubes

what to do:

    1. heat the oil in a frying pan or wok over a medium heat, add the shallots and stir for about 1 minute.
    2. whilst the shallots are cooking, heat the rice in the microwave as per the packet instructions (but for 1 minute only, because we will cook it for the remaining minute later in the wok).
    3. add the diced pepper to the shallots, and continue stirring for about another minute.
    4. add the half-cooked rice, peas and strips of ham to the wok and give it all a good stir, season well with black pepper and add a dash of soy sauce, keep stirring to ensure everything heats up.
    5. after 2 minutes or so, use a wooden spatula to move all of the rice mixture to one side of the wok (this is to make room for the egg).
    6. tip the beaten egg into the space in the wok, and allow this to gently cook for a minute or so.
    7. as the egg begins to cook, use your spatula to break it up into pieces, then gradually combine it with the rice mixture.
    8. add a little extra soy-sauce to taste, and  little more black pepper if needed.
    9. serve in a warm bowl and with a generous dollop of Bolly Good chili sauce, to really give it an extra kick. YUMMY!

Egg Fried Rice

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Bradley’s Beef & Black Pud Burgers

Brad's Beef & Black Pudding Burgers
Brad’s Beef & Black Pudding Burgers

Inspired by the random spout of glorious sunshine on this lazy Sunday afternoon, we thought a spot of al-fesco dining was appropriate, to make the most of the summery-vibes.

Brad took to the fridge, and gathered ingredients for a big, bad-ass burger, and hence: Bradley’s Beef & Black Pud Burgers’s were born!

There are loads of variations you could do to tweak this recipe (i.e. if you don’t like Black Pudding, you can skip it – however, I would recommend trying it, as it does add an amazing depth of flavour). Brad also used Mr Vikki’s King Naga chilli conserve to add a little kick, but if you don’t like spice (you must be crazy!) you can easily skip this, or substitute it with some garlic paste for an equally scrummy taste sensation.

We cooked our burgers on the BBQ, but they can easily be done on a hot griddle pan or a thick -based frying pan on the hob.

This recipe makes 2 large beef burgers, and therefore serves 2 hungry burger-loving foodies. It takes about 25 mins from start to finish. GO TRY!

what you need:

  • 300g good-quality, lean minced beef
  • 60g (or one average slice) bury black pudding, diced into small cubes
  • 30g cheddar cheese, chopped into small cubes
  • small handful of breadcrumbs (optional)
  • 1/2 a sweet red pepper, chopped into small pieces
  • 2 artisan seeded crusty rolls
  • green salad leaves, to garnish
  • a tablespoon of plain, organic humous
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • mayonnaise, to serve

what to do:

1.  using your hands, work the minced beef so it forms (in Bradley’s words) a ‘beef paste.’ You just need to ensure all strands of the mince are combined, the more you ‘work it’, the better the burgers will stay together.

2. next, add the black pudding cubes to the minced beef, combining gently (keep some of the cubes whole, which will add texture to your beefy-burgs).

3. then, add the cheddar cheese cubes to the patty. Don’t worry if the cubes of cheese aren’t completely combined, as this will ensure little boulders of molten cheese remain inside the burger when cooking – essential gooey goodness.

4.  halve the mixture into two equal parts, and mold into a patty shape using your hands.

5.  coat the burgers in a light layer of breadcrumbs (from a packet is fine) – see picture below.

The burgers are lightly coated in breadcrumbs, to given them a nice char-grilled outside whilst cooking
The burgers are lightly coated in breadcrumbs, to give a nice char-grilled colour whilst cooking

6.  heat your BBQ or griddle pan to a high heat. Once heated, cook your burgers for 10-12 minutes, turning occasionally.

Cheese oozing from the char-grilled burgers on the BBQ
Cheese oozing from the char-grilled burgers on the BBQ

7.  leave the burgers to rest for 3 mins, whilst you prep the buns…

8.  half your crusty rolls and spread the bottom half with the humous, then top with the pieces of sweet red pepper.

Humous & sweet peppers on the buns, and Mr Vikki's King Naga conserve
Humous & sweet peppers on the artisan crusty rolls, and don’t forget Mr Vikki’s King Naga conserve!

9.  spread your mayonnaise on the top half of the bun, and top with green salad leaves – see picture below.

Brad's Beef & Black Pudding Burgers

10.  once your burgers have rested, assemble them between the rolls, and serve straight away, whilst the cheese is still gooey.

Brad's Beef & Black Pudding Burgers

Enjoy, scranners! -x-

My Artisan Selection box has arrived!

My Artisan Selection Box from http://compareyourartisan.com/
My Artisan Selection Box from compareyourartisan.com #artisanselection

My beautiful #ArtisanSelection box from compareyourartisan.com has arrived, and first off I must say the delivery service was super-prompt. I can get a little impatient when it comes to food (because I love it so much, duhhh), so it was great they didn’t keep me waiting long at all!

I went for “The Foodie” – 8 assorted foodie-friendly Artisan selection items from their lovely range, and I let them surprise me, so had no idea what it was going to contain. It was as if they knew about my obsession with obscure and specialty teas (stemmed from a visit to Nepal in 2011) so I was delighted to see a box of wild, organic, hand-picked Mountain Tea from Greece… I have never seen anything like it, super intrigued… Cannot wait to try it. It also seemed a bit like magic that the box featured a chilli sauce – if you know me, you know I am obsessed with spice. These guys really do know their buyers & suppliers well, and I’m impressed already.

The box features a range of wonderful products, some local to the UK and some from as far afield as Italy & Greece! Details listed below:

~ Riverside Lifestyle Strawberry & Lavender Jam: riversidelifestyle.co.uk

~ Chilli Drops ‘BollyGood’ chilli sauce: chillidrops.co.uk

~ Urbangrains Organic Mountain Tea: urbangrains.net

~ Hasting’s Ketchup Company Lemon Ketchup: hastingsketchup.co.uk

~ Via Emilia Crema per Crostini di Olive Nere (Black Olive Crostini Spread): viaemilia.net

~ Agnes Rose Raspberry Vinegar: agnesrose.co.uk

~ Bonilla a la Vista Patatas Fritas: bonillaalavista.com

~ Breckland Orchard Cherry & Plum Posh Pop: brecklandorchard.co.uk

I will be trying each item in turn, keeping you posted on what each one tastes like. I’m excited already. In fact, I think I fancy croissants with Strawberry & Lavender Jam for breakfast. Yum.

If you guys have any ideas or recommendations, please use the comments below to post them.

In the meantime, follow CompareYourSupplier (@UK_CYS) on Twitter for updates & information on their artisan selection boxes.

Love, Sophie -x-

 

Jodie’s Chicken, Mustard & Mushroom Pie

Jodie's Chicken & Mushroom Pie served with cheesy mash, sweet potato mash, buttered mange-tout and pickled red cabbage. YUM!
Jodie’s Chicken & Mushroom Pie served with cheesy mash, sweet potato mash, buttered mange-tout and pickled red cabbage. YUM!

This is the ultimate easy-peasy pie to impress your mates with on a cold autumn weekend evening, with a few glasses of wine and a good-old catch up. Or even better, you could give your Mum a break from the usual Sunday-roast grind by rustling this up for her in no time, just tell her to put her feet up and you can have this little bad-boy ready within the hour.

A couple of week’s a go on a girls holiday to Sherwood Forest, where we stayed in a luxury log cabin for a week, my good friend Jodie House got to work in the kitchen, whilst the rest of us frolicked in the hot-tub sipping fine wine. She said she didn’t need a hand – ‘she got this’. So, we left her to it, and within the hour a feast was served, KUDOS Jodie – just what we needed after a long afternoon foraging in the woodlands at Go-Ape. Just perfect.

You can serve the pie with a number of options, but by request, Jodie went for a cheesy mash potato, a sweet potato mash, stir-fried buttered mange-tout and pickled red cabbage. Trust me, it was a taste sensation, so please, please try it!

Overall time to make this is about 1 hour, and this recipe serves 6 hungry log-loving forest ramblers. Warning: copious compliments guaranteed – so be ready!

what you need:

  • 4 chicken breasts, seasoned with salt and pepper, diced into 2cm chunks
  • knob of butter
  • olive oil
  • bunch of spring onions, thinly sliced
  • 200g button mushrooms, (any big ones halved)
  • 1 heaped tbsp plain flour
  • 2 tsp English mustard
  • 2 heaped tbsp creme fraiche
  • 300ml good chicken stock
  • bunch of fresh thyme, leaves removed and stalks discarded
  • 1/3 nutmeg, for grating
  • 1 sheet of ready-rolled puff pastry
  • 1 free-range egg

what to do:

  1. pre-heat the oven to 200C/400F/gas mark 6
  2. heat the butter and a glug of olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat, and cook the chicken for about 3 minutes
  3. add the spring onions, mushrooms and 1 heaped tbsp of flour and stir
  4. add the English mustard, creme fraiche and chicken stock into the pan and stir well
  5. add the thyme leaves and a good grating of nutmeg and leave the creamy chicken mixture to simmer whilst you prep the pastry…
  6. lightly dust a flat surface with flour and roll out the pastry so it’s large enough to cover the inside diameter of your pie dish (we didn’t have a rolling pin so had to think outside the box – see image below)
  7. use a knife to gently score (be careful not to cut-through) the pastry – get creative, criss crosses look nice but any pattern would work, just be gentle!
  8. after 5-10 mins of simmering, remove the chicken mixture from the heat, and transfer to your pie dish (this must be an oven-proof baking dish, and large enough to serve 6)
  9. cover the filling mixture with the sheet of pastry, tucking in the edges
  10. beat the egg and brush it over the pie – we didn’t have an egg brush, so we used a few sprigs of thyme stalks with the leaves on to coat the pie (see image below), which also added a nice flavour!
  11. place the pie on the top shelf of the oven, and cook until golden and crisp (about 15-20 mins max)
  12. serve in the middle of the table with your chosen accompaniments (as recommended above) and watch your mates dig in with sheer delight!

Enjoy, scranners!

If you don't have a rolling pin to hand, an empty wine bottle works just as well - and we happened to have plenty of those to-hand!
If you don’t have a rolling pin to hand, an empty wine bottle works just as well – and we happened to have plenty of those to-hand…
Chicken, mustard & mushroom pie filling before the pastry is placed on top.
Chicken, mustard & mushroom pie filling before the pastry is placed on top.
Chicken Pie filling taste test - always check your seasoning!
Chicken Pie filling taste test – always check your seasoning!
Brush with beaten free-range egg for the ultimate shiny glaze to your pie. Using the thyme stalks added extra scrumptious flavour!
Brush with beaten free-range egg for the ultimate shiny glaze to your pie. Using the thyme stalks added extra scrumptious flavour.

Thyme and Tabasco Sausage Rolls

It’s getting towards that time of year when we need a little bit of ‘comfort’ food to help us through the cold autumn and winter months. It’s pretty much a great excuse to stuff our faces with tasty treats. After all, we need a little bit of extra fat for the winter, so we might as well start now. Agreed? Good, then read on….

These sausage rolls are warming, moreish, comforting and super-easy to rustle-up  in about 45 minutes. They also have a slightly ‘festive’ feel about them.  You don’t have to cook them straight away either, you can save them covered in the fridge for up to 3 days beforehand, so they can be made well in advance if you are planning a little party or get-together. After all, it’s 100 sleeps until Christmas, so why not!

This recipe makes about 40 sausage rolls (I told you, they are moreish!) but if you don’t want to make so many, you can easily halve the quantities (but may live to regret it)…

Thyme & Tobasco Sausage Rolls
Thyme & Tabasco Sausage Rolls, baking in batches until golden and crisp.

What you need:

  • 1 knob butter
  • small glug of olive oil
  • parchment paper
  • 4 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp Tabasco sauce
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves (removed from stalks)
  • 690g good quality sausage meat or 10 sausages with the meat pushed out from the skins (I use Sainsbury’s Ultimate 97% Pork Sausages)
  • 4 320g sheets of ready-rolled puff pastry
  • 1 free-range egg, beaten
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

What to do:

  1. preheat your oven to 200C/400F/Gas mark 6.
  2. melt the butter in a large frying pan and fry the finely chopped shallots until they are golden and soft. transfer to a large mixing bowl.
  3. to the mixing bowl, add the Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, fresh thyme and sausage meat and season well with salt and freshly ground black pepper. mix together until thoroughly combined, using your hands if necessary!
  4. next, roll the puff pastry out into a large rectangle, then cut into two long rectangles.
  5. place a layer of sausage meat mixture down the middle of each pastry rectangle, then brush each pastry rectangle with beaten egg along one side.
  6. fold the other side of the pastry over onto the egg-washed edge. press down to seal using a fork (which makes a nice pattern) and cut each pastry roll into about 10 small sausage rolls
  7. repeat this for the second pack of puff pastry (if using), until you have as many sausage rolls as required.
  8. lightly oil a baking tray using the kitchen paper olive oil, and place the sausage rolls the tray and then into the oven.
  9. bake for 18-20 minutes, or until crisp and golden and the sausage meat is completely cooked throughout.

Enjoy, scranners!

Spanish Night at the Cabin – Classic Paella

Paella 2

Classic Paella with Chicken, roasted red peppers and Chorizo

This recipe serves 6 and is a great crowd-pleaser. It was my turn to cook at our log cabin holiday in Sherwood Forest, and all of my friends like different things (and some of them are just damn fussy), so I chose this dish because it has something for everyone. It was also a cost-effective way to feed 6 hungry forest ramblers on the second day of our log-cabin retreat/adventure holiday! The main ingredient is chicken (so the seafood-haters were happy) and the spicy element is completely optional (as you add the chorizo Piccante at the end) – so everyone was catered for, no one went hungry and everyone wanted ‘seconds’!!

This is a classic Paella, but of course you can mix it up my using seafood (tiger prawns, mussels and squid can be substituted for the chicken, just make sure you switch to fish-stock and leave out the chorizo altogether). If you want to make a veggie-version, use veg-stock, double the roasted red pepper quantities and add 200g of baby spinach leaves for the last 5 minutes of cooking time.

This recipe takes about 45 minutes from start to finish, and serves 6 hungry people. It may well go further if you serve with bread and oils, or if you do have left overs, it’s great for lunch the next day, re-heated.

What you need:

  • a good glug of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 large chicken breasts, chopped into small pieces
  • 100 g chorizo Piccante, thinly sliced (optional ingredient – if you want to add spice)
  • 800ml chicken stock
  • pinch of saffron
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 2 400g tins of whole plum tomatoes (use some scissors inside the tin to roughly chop the tomatoes) by doing this, the taste is sweeter that using ready-chopped tinned tomatoes
  • 2 handfuls of frozen petits pois
  • bunch of flat leaf parsley, leaves roughly chopped and half the stalks set-aside for later
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 375g Spanish Paella rice
  • half a jar of roasted red peppers, drained and rinsed, chopped into chunks
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to season

What to do;

  1. heat 2 tbsp of olive oil in a wide frying pan (preferably with a lid but if you don’t have a lid then have some tin foil to hand) over a medium-high heat and cook the chicken until golden. Remove from the pan and set aside.
  2. boil the kettle and add 800ml of boiling water to the chicken stock, adding the pinch of saffron, set aside.
  3. fry the onion in the rest of the olive oil until soft and golden, then add the garlic, parsley stalks, paprika and tinned tomatoes and cook for a further 2 minutes.
  4. stir in the paella rice and season well with salt and pepper
  5. once the rice is stirred in, slowly add the chicken stock and bring back to a gentle boil – leave to cook with the lid off for 10 minutes and DO NOT STIR* – it’s tempting, but refrain!
  6. after 10 minutes scatter the cooked chicken pieces over the rice evenly and press them under the stock using a wooden spoon.
  7. sprinkle over the peas and the roasted red peppers, DON’T STIR – just give the pan a gentle shake, allow to simmer for a further 10 minutes or until the stock is absorbed and the chicken is cooked through.
  8. turn off the heat and cover the pan with a lid or some tin foil (ensure it is tight) and allow the paella to rest for 5 minutes before serving.
  9. serve your paella in the middle of the table with a serving spoon, with a generous sprinkle of the parsley leaves and give a few good squeezes of the lemon wedges (and the sprinkle over the chorizo, if using).

*by not stirring, you are encouraging a slight crunchy layer of rice at the bottom, which will make the dish more authentic

¡Buen apetito!

Paella 1
Classic Paella, served with chopped flat-leaf parsley and lemon wedges

Fusilli salad with Pork & Herb Chipolatas

Fusilli & Herby Pork Chipolats  photo 5

Super simple. Easy peasy. Delicious. Serves 2. Sometimes I make extra, knowing that this is sooooo scrumptious, I want it again for lunch the next day…. Go on, you know you want to!

What you need:

  • generous glug of olive oil
  • 150g Fusilli pasta
  • 4 pork chipoloatas (I use Waitrose British pork & herb)
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • handful of frozen peas (or petits pois)
  • 50g sun-dried tomatoes, sliced
  • grated Parmesan (to serve)
  • handful of chopped fresh herbs flat-leaf parsley
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

What to do:

  1. Cook to Fusilli in a pan of well salted water for 10-12 minutes, or until ‘al dente’. 
  2. Slice the chipolatas into chunks and heat a glug of olive oil in a frying pan,  fry the sausages over a medium heat until golden brown.
  3. Add the sliced shallots and garlic to the frying pan and toss together with the chunks of sausage.
  4. Add the peas to the pasta for the final 2 minutes of the pasta’s cooking time, and toss the sun-dried tomatoes through the sausage mixture to warm through.
  5. Drain the pasta and peas and then add to the sausage in the frying pan, ensuring all the pasta is coated.
  6. Season well with salt and pepper and stir through a handful of the parsley, grate over the Parmesan.
  7. Serve hot or cold, for lunch or dinner. Enjoy -x-

 

BBC Good Food Show, save 20% on tickets

winterlogowithlexus

Save 20% on tickets to the BBC Good Food Show by using the promo code WW20 at the check-out! We will be there on Saturday 29th November and our show of choice is the Two Greedy Italians: Antonio Carluccio & Gennaro Contaldo @ 12:30 PM! 

antonio-and-gennaro

The event is all hosted at the NEC in Birmingham! Other guest chefs are John Torode, James Martin, Tom Kerridge, Paul Hollywood, Mary Berry and the Hairy Bikers!

Get your tickets before the offer expires at midnight tonight: http://www.bbcgoodfoodshowwinter.com/Content/Welcome/1/

Hope to see you there, fellow foodies -x-