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Miguel de Cervantes

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Entries in mushroom (4)

Wednesday
Dec232015

Bigos

Buon Natale, Wesołych Świąt, Merry Christmas. 

I'm writing this from Bormio in the Dolomites, a mountain range in northeastern Italy. This morning I braved the cold at first light and walked halfway up the nearby snow-capped peaks. I hoped to capture the sunrise, but my camera did it no justice at all. After several hours shopping for Christmas lunch I headed up to Bagni Vecchi, the ancient thermal baths just out of town:

Today I am sharing a Polish Christmas recipe called bigos. I have been writing a series for Borough Market about food and identity, where I interview traders about the foods that are important to them. One of my interviewees, Ewa Weremij, is Polish. She told me that bigos "is a special dish for the Christmas time". You can read more about the Christmas traditions that Ewa and her family observe on the Borough Market blog.

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Friday
Mar252011

Beef and Guinness pie

 

Fellow blogger, Jo Romero, has dedicated her little corner of the web to one of my favourite things – comfort food. So when she asked me to do a guest post for her blog, comfort bites, I jumped at the chance.

Comfort bites for me means hearty and warming foods like pies, stews and casseroles; those things best eaten when it is cold and miserable outside. And if I had to choose it would be a pie every time – stew with an added bonus, pastry. As you know, I am a big fan of pastry!

Most traditional English fare is very comforting indeed, hardly surprising given the weather we have to put up with. So for my guest post I chose an old British staple, the Beef and Guinness pie.

You can read my guest post here, and while you are at it have a look round Jo’s blog, there are lots of delicious recipes to try.

For those who prefer to cut to the chase, I have provided the recipe below. Makes four individual pies or one large pie for four.

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Friday
Oct082010

Chanterelles a blanc, inspired by Child, Bertolle and Beck (and the mushrooms themselves)

This is another of the recipes I made in France. When I saw these glorious golden chanterelles on the market in L’Isle sur la Sorgue, I had no idea what I would do with them, but they just looked too delicious to pass by. I had brought my copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking to France (paperback!), as I thought it would be fun to cook something from it while I was there and so I looked to Child, Bertolle and Beck for inspiration.

When I packed the book, I was thinking along the lines of something a little more challenging, like a soufflé or quenelles, but the chanterelles needed very little doing to them, they called for something simple, yet elegant and I thought the light and delicate flavouring in the champignons a blanc would provide just that.

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Tuesday
Aug172010

Creamy chicken pie with leeks, mushrooms and bacon

 

Loser that I am, I was actually excited when I heard that the weather was forecast to be wet, windy and, by most people's standards, utterly miserable this past weekend. And when I opened the door to my little balcony on Saturday and was greeted by torrential rain, I was positively over the moon. Why? Because I have been missing my winter comfort foods God dammit! As you may have gathered, I get great joy out of making my own pastry, but apart from the fact that it is incredibly difficult to make decent pastry when it is hot, it is not much fun eating it in summery weather either.

I took this turn in the weather as my window of opportunity to cook and enjoy as much wintery goodness as was humanly possible in one August weekend: Chorizo, chicken and cannellini bean stew followed by apple and pear crumble on Friday; creamy chicken pie with leeks, mushrooms and bacon followed by Dad’s best ever brownies and vanilla ice cream on Saturday; and accidental tomato, mushroom and red onion tart on Sunday, all washed down with plenty of red wine. And to top it all off, I made the tart that didn’t go to plan on Sunday on Monday night as well. So much for the 2kg I wanted to drop for my trip to Croatia in less than two weeks.

This chicken pie is my own recipe and, as such, it tends to be a little different each time I make it. However, I have made it enough times now to have worked out which combination I like best (this one). You may prefer to add or substitute some other vegetables (e.g. carrots, celery, peas, sweet corn) or you may find tarragon too strong, in which case I suggest parsley or thyme. So long as the basics are there (chicken, wine, cream, stock, pastry), it would be hard to go wrong. Have a play around and see what you like best.

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