“From there to here, from here to there, funny things are everywhere!”
Dr. Seuss - One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish
I'm not sure about the word' funny' in the context of this post, from Dr. Seuss's famous words, but if you substitute 'foodie' then we might be nearer to the subject of this post. More little things - from here, there and everywhere - which I now seem to be doing about once a month. Well I come across things that are worth mentioning but not for a whole post. So no, I don't think these are funny, but maybe some are a bit weird. So funny peculiar not funny hah hah!
Pizza - I actually have two weird things here.
1. A tip from somewhere - I can't remember where now - Lemon juice squeezed over cold pizza. The writer swore by it. I think it was a chef from an article on chefs' guilty secrets. I mean if cold pizza wasn't a gruesome enough thought, squeezing lemon on it would seem completely illogical. But who knows? Maybe it's one of those left of field ideas that is absolutely brilliant. The author certainly thought so. The writer did not specify what kind of pizza.
2. Blueberry pizza! - actually Blueberry and prosciutto pizza from the September Coles Magazine. So very today but surely an outlier. But then when I was looking for the picture - having fed in 'blueberry pizza', thinking there would only be one candidate, up came a whole host of them. Here are just a few - the original Coles one is first and very pretty it is. The others are: with whipped ricotta and caramelised shallots, a Blueberry Margherita and one with feta, honey and caramelised onion. There are dessert versions too of course. Anyway lots - there are heaps more, so maybe I'm the weird one in not thinking of doing such an obvious thing! They're all so quintessentially millennial food though somehow.
Frozen wine - a tip from Nigella. Round up all your leftover bits of wine from dinner parties, or just from dinner, put them in freezer bags and freeze them ready for cooking. I don't think she was recommending them for drinking. Frugal if a tiny bit weird. In our house when it's just David and I there is no leftover wine. If there is a little I use it in stews and things.
Deep-fried garlic - this is from Simon Hopkinson's Roast chicken and other stories. He says of this that:
"they are so good that they could be eaten on their own as nibbles with drinks, but more often than not this is something I would serve with roast lamb, grilled duck breast or steak"
Or tucked into a salad apparently. It's actually quite a process. You have to boil the garlic cloves first before doing the whole rolling in egg and breadcrumbs thing. You'd have to like garlic, athough boiling the cloves would soften the taste somewhat. A bit niche - for the kind of cook I once was - in my executive wife days.
Where has all the horseradish gone? - So many times you find a recipe for smoked fish that requires horseradish, besides I love horseradish. Indeed you really can't eat roast beef without it, And yet it has disappeared from the supermarket shelves. I'm not talking about real fresh horseradish here, but I'm definitely not talking about horseradish cream which you can find, (f you look carefully) and which has only got a bit of horseradish in it. No those little jars of horseradish from Heinz, or Master Foods or from Germany, have disappeared. I think I once saw some actual horseradish on the shelves. Maybe when we can get back to plant nurseries I should grow some. Apparently it grows like a weed and you can forage for it in England. Is this horseradish? It grows near here, but I'm not game to try it. The plant on the left is the one I am wondering about.
I saw this recently from Nigel Slater in The Guardian. The pasta dish is Orecchiette with green beans and tomato confit by which he doesn't mean just oven-dried tomatoes, Mind you they are similar but the preserving method is just taken a step further by roasting them slowly in oil.
"The tomatoes are skinned and seeded, then cooked slowly in deep, green oil with spikes of rosemary, peppercorns and thyme. They will keep in the cool – I put them on the top shelf of the fridge – a squirrel store for the first frosts. Once the tomatoes are soft and starting to brown here and there, crush them into a rough-edged sauce"
He must have a big fridge unless he only makes one jar. I have to say that the ones shown here in the jar don't look very crushed - and you don't peel the cherry tomatoes. If we ever have a glut of tomatoes again it could be worth trying.
Cheese and herb impossible quiche - this is from Woolworths. Still a bit weird. The weirdness and the 'impossible' bit is because:
"As the flour sinks to the bottom during baking it forms a light crust on the base, which means you don’t have to make the crust separately."
Which is a bit like those impossible puddings. I think I like a nice crunchy pastry base rather than a light crust, but it might be worth trying some time, just to see. Otherwise it's just a frittata isn't it?
Leftover coffee grounds - there are all manner of things outside of cooking that you can do with coffee grounds - I mean what's left in your espresso machine when you've made your coffee. Outside of cooking - compost, sprinkle around plants to keep away snails and slugs, deodoriser in the fridge - just put a cup in the back, various body scrubs and things as well. But you can also cook with them.
The main things here seem to be as a rub for steak - with an example shown here, although it's vegetables that have been rubbed here, not steak. I had this in my head as a topic for an oddments post but today I just could not find my original source. I found lots of recipes for a coffee based rub for steak but not one that used the leftover grounds. This one - Spent coffee rub - I have to say looks a little burnt, but it's from Tom Hunt of the Guardian and he swears that:
"Spent-coffee is a secret ingredient that adds serious depth of flavour"
So give it a go sometime.
The other main thing is biscuits, cookies, brownies. Now there are lots of recipes for them and here is one - from the same man - spent coffee brownies - that I think I might give a go. And next to that are biscotti - also very tempting looking, from The Splendid Table.
Granola, ice-cream, milk shakes ...
Grilled pineapple with maple lime dressing and chilli salt - my last thing. Nothing weird or funny about this, just something to help you to dream of a time when you might be able to have a friends or family barbecue in your back garden. It's from Yotam Ottolenghi and it looks beautiful. I really ought to eat pineapple more often, as we are so blessed with a plentiful supply of the fresh fruit here in Australia and it's generally pretty cheap too.