Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Scandi Kitchen Cinnamon Buns

These cinnamon buns are so soft, so gorgeously doughy and so unbelievably full of cinnamony goodness that you won't want to look at any other cinnamon bun recipe ever again. I had my first ever cinnamon bun at the Scandi Kitchen on Great Titchfield Street about a year ago, and haven't looked back since. It was one of those wonderfully shameless moments where I stood a few meters from the door (having stopped in my tracks on taking first bite) and scoffed the whole thing. No, this is not a save it for later kind of bun. 

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Gua bao with spicy fried chicken

Gua Bao, often known quite ambiguously as just 'Bao' - which would be like saying 'bread' or 'wrap' - is a Taiwanese street food made to melt hearts and stomachs alike. They are little cloud-like white buns in which you'll find a varity of magnificently cooked meat (crispy duck, braised pork belly, fried chicken...) accompanied by tangy, crispy, saucy and spicy flavours. My perfect Gua Bao comprises of magnificent meat, something pickled, something spicy and a (very important) crunch.

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Winter Slaw with Thai Peanut Dressing

About two years ago I went for dinner at a dear friends house and she served me this. Or something like this, it was peanutty red cabbage, that's for sure. It has stuck with me since then as such a beautiful merging of English and Thai with a sprinkling of Christmas (the red cabbage). I'm sure that's what she was going for.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Spaghetti Aglio e Olio

Pasta with garlic and olive oil, a gorgeous traditional pasta dish from Napoli. Also the pasta dish that Jon Favreau uses to seduce Scarlett Johannson in 'Chef'. If you haven't seen the film, you must. It is happy, food-filled, music filled and just lovely in all ways.

Monday, 9 November 2015

Bacon & Chocolate bread pudding

So I often get asked about my love for bacon, and for my lack of bacon recipes on my bacon-named blog. I love bacon, of course. I don't want to alarm anyone, but I also love bread. And cheese. And vegetables (I know), hence my range of incredibly diverse recipe's on the blog. One of the things I love most about cooking is how much you can achieve with just a little experimenting, and of course devouring the delicious results. This time, I wanted to bring back the bacon a bit. But not just bacon in bacony recipes. I wanted to put bacon somewhere a bit different. In bread pudding. 

Monday, 2 November 2015

Lemon & rosemary posset

Lemon posset. A smooth, "citrussy fool"* combining tangy sharpness with a deep, glorious creaminess. Just as easy to make as it is to inhale. I mean enjoy. 

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Roasted salmon, proscuitto & vegetables with caper and basil mayonnaise

I'm going to be straightforward about this one. If you're looking for something delicious, healthy, easy, crispy, flavorful, darn even gluten free - then you have your winner here. 

This is a one tray dish. And you cook it for 10 minutes. 

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Beer battered cod bites with tartare sauce

I do believe that almost anything can be served as a canapé or a starter, so long as it's small enough and packaged correctly. Canapés, starters, nibbles - they are all wonderful excuses for us to eat more and to occasionally shun the (welcome) burden of choice.

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Crunchy seeds with soy sauce & chilli

This is one of those.... recipes? foody bits... snacks? that I don't even think about. I make these as a snack, for salads, for veg, to dip things into and just have a pot of them ready at home. The last dinner party where they were present (as a salad topping), a guest munched the whole pot, post dinner. MOREISH I TELL YOU!

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Crispy Asian chicken thighs

This is my Mum's recipe, so you know it's going to be good. Alongside the lovely English classics such as cottage pies and Sunday roasts, my wonderful Ma has a magnificent repertoire of Asian recipes. 

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Fattoush with feta

You've probably only had fattoush at Lebanese restaurants as part of an elaborate mezze spread (or perhaps that's just me who's been missing out) but I'd like to inform you that it makes a wonderful main. With some feta thrown in. And it's easy to make.

Thursday, 10 September 2015

Peach & almond pavlova with a berry coulis

Just to try and keep the summer around for a liiiiiittle bit longer, I've made pavlova. Known as one of the summeriest puddings around, pavlova is as beautiful as it is delicious.

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Crispy Aromatic Duck

If I hadn't named this blog Notes of Bacon, I would have definitely gone for 'Notes of Crispy Duck'. By that I mean that crispy aromatic duck, the westernised sister of the Peking duck, is, for me, up there with bacon. Alongside all other crispy meat.

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Nasi Goreng

Brainstorming what lunch should be with a Dutch man and three Brits who have spent a large chunk of their lives in the Far East is going to land you somewhere delicious, inevitably. I should really have seen nasi goreng coming. 

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Tartines - 3 ways

Working at a Bakery, I am lucky enough to have access to the most incredible breads. To the exasperation of those I have the pleasure of eating with, I have become a complete and utter bread snob. I talk more about open crumbs, crackling crusts and proving dough than I should like to admit. It's just, when the topic has risen, I knead to make sure I prove my point. I don't want to be too floury on the topic, but I can't let my friends bread knowledge go a-rye. It is, after all, how I bring in the dough.

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

BBQ Pork Bánh Mì

I have an obsession with bánh mì. But tasting the combination of overnight marinated pork, tangy pickles, pâté and a crusty, light baguette - who wouldn't develop an obsession?

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Pasta with Sicilian pesto and sundried tomato & pine nut salad

I BOUGHT A MAGIMIX! There, it's out. I'm so excited. All the whizzing.... pureeing... chopping... grating.... An endless world I am yet to explore. It has pride of place and is now taking up the majority of my very small kitchen, so I think we're going to have to get to know each other fairly quickly. 

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

The BEST Chocolate Chip Cookies

You may wonder what on earth I've done to these cookies to enable myself to call them 'the best'. Brown butter. Yup. So I also thought that this was only what happened when you're too busy singing into your spatula, forget you're melting butter and proceeded to throw it away to replace with fresh un-browned butter, but no. The wonderful woman that is Joy the Baker has taught me some brilliant things about the caramelly, flavoursome, nutty taste that brown butter can bring to your baked goods. 

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Summer Puff Pastry Tarts

Parma ham, roasted tomato and baby leaves tart with mascarpone and capers
Watching the fantastic men's singles Wimbledon final I wanted to eat something that didn't require too much cooking to tear me away from the telly. Something light, Summery and delicious enough for the likes of Wimbledon folk. Having already gorged myself on strawberries and whipped cream the previous weekend (I got over-excited), I went for puff pastry tarts. Obviously.

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Chargrilled asparagus, courgette & halloumi with roasted tomatoes and basil oil

You probably think I have an obsession by now (and you might be right) but here is another of Ottolenghi’s creations. I ate this salad recently at an event and have been dreaming about it ever since. After much googling I discovered that it was not a chef original (as I was deceptively told) but an Ottolenghi. Of course it was.

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Roasted butternut squash and red onion with tahini and za'atar

I wanted something colourful and summery that fits into the vegetarian category (I know, don't be too alarmed) but that also keeps hunger locked up until the next decent bacon fix. Not an easy task, I must say. Of course my main man Ottolenghi came prancing over the hills, as he often does, with another wonderous answer to all my vegetable questions. 

Friday, 26 June 2015

PIZZA: Two ways (featuring caramelised fennel, crispy prosciutto and roasted red peppers...)

Caramelised fennel, mozzarella, black olives & crispy prosciutto pizza

I had a bad experience with yeast. It scarred me. As touched upon briefly on my date with a bacon scone, I created a monster. Unfortunately it had been whilst using a recipe with a significant amount of chia seeds, meaning I had pretty much rolled up a wad of cash, dunked it in some fizzy yeast and baked it. Moral of the story - don't experiment with large quantities of expensive ingredients. Another moral - research a bit more about yeast and DO NOT WING IT.

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Spicy Chorizo and Roasted Tomato Orecchiette

Having recently returned from Valencia, I am already having desparate withdrawal symptoms from the food. The jamón ibérico, the huge, juicy tomatoes, the crispy fried calamari.... We did, however, manage to bring some wonderful bits back with us, including some spicy chorizo, two huge Valencian tomatoes and that lovely ceramic bowl you see before you. 

Thursday, 28 May 2015

Beetroot, Fennel, Mint & Feta Salad

This is the type of salad that yells "SPRING IS HERE!" right in your face. In a good way. Provided you don't get overexcited and mix it all too vigorously and get beetroot juice everywhere, it is a beautiful, tasty and healthy salad.

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Jazzed up Banana Bread

So I’ve jazzed up the banana bread. Imagine taking your favourite moist, sweet, banana-y banana bread and introducing him to those rice crispy guys- Snap, Crackle and Pop. Yup, he crackles. 

Saturday, 9 May 2015

Homemade sweet & sour pickles

So I have discovered that these are also referred to as bread and butter pickles. After a bit of a google, I learned that this has nothing to do with how you actually use the pickle and is just a confusing name, hence the use of 'sweet and sour' above. I'm not out to confuse you, only feed you.

Monday, 27 April 2015

Ottolenghi's Green Couscous

Couscous is lovely, of course, but I really feel you have to make an extra special effort to get a couscous dish that stands on its own. Couscous requires you to go that extra mile to avoid flavourless clumps and a side dish untouched. The effort is, however, worth it. 

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Speedy Flatbreads with Garlic & Herb Butter

Now you may think, due to the sheer beauty of these flatbreads (and the fact that they are flatbreads) that they were the result of a long, complicated and arduous method. I am so happy to tell you - you're wrong.

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Slow Roast Pork Belly

I've been wanting to cook pork belly forever. It's always been that amazing treat that I have to order in a restaurant or at get fed at someone else's house. Never have I been brave enough to cook it on my own with a delicious slab of meat purchased from an actual BUTCHER!

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Salted Dulce de Leche Brownies

Now if you don't know what Dulce de Leche is, I'm so sorry you've never tried it before but I'm also so excited to introduce you. Think gooey caramelly goodness. The yummy bit in Banoffee Pie. Caramelised condensed milk. Here we shall combine gooey, fudgy chocolate brownies with Dulce de Leche (it just sounds indulgent doesn't it) and a sprinkling of salt. 

These brownies are taken from a recipe by David Lebovitz, the wonderful pastry chef who also enabled me to make marshmallows (yeah I made marshmallows). I don't expect you to wonder why I made these brownies, you can see for yourself. I love salads, I really do, but sometimes you just need a salted duche de leche brownie. You understand.

In the past I have made my own Dulce de Leche by boiling condensed milk, as you can see in my Banoffee Arctic Roll. Yes I was very pleased with myself and it tasted lovely, it really did, but who has 4 hours to boil condensed milk? Nobody. So this time I purchased my condensed milk in a lovely jar from Portena found in a fancy shop (you can also get the canned version). Delicious. 

Now bake, I implore you. 

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Gousto: a review

So this is my first review. Gousto, a fresh food delivery company, were kind enough to send me a scrumptious box to try out to get some feedback and see what I think. As someone who likes to be 'creative' in the kitchen (no i'm not saying it's always successful) and who gets very specific cravings (bacon), the thought of being told what to cook with exact ingredients was slightly unnerving and seemed a little restrictive. I couldn't have been more wrong.
My delicious Gousto Beef Stroganoff (if I might say so myself)

Gousto have also been kind enough to offer YOU lovely people £20 off your first box by purchasing through this link: Gousto.co.uk/Bacon. 

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Two salads: Marinated Mozzarella & Tangy Cucumber

These beautiful and tastalicious salads are getting us ready for spring time, let alone summer BBQ's. I must confess I ate these for lunch and didn't even have a main (they are that good) but just imagine them next to a burger. Or a sausage. Or a lovely rib. Yes.

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Huevos Rancheros

This is a wonderful hangover cure. Or just an insanely great breakfast.

Sunday, 22 February 2015

Smokey bacon and kale pasta

Every year I'm excited for winter: Christmas, snow (I know, hopes and dreams smashed annually), mulled wine (would drink it all year round) and other general winter fun. However, as soon as the new year breaks and I can't quite believe that the days are getting longer and lighter, I'm still waiting for snow and I'm incredibly bored of hat/glove/scarf admin, I find spring just can't come fast enough. I'm ready for springtime.

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Roasted Vegetables with Caper Vinaigrette

Veg is great, we know that, but sometimes it needs a little sprucing. Yotam Ottolenghi has hit the nail on the head with his caper vinaigrette. Ok so he may have originally paired it with parsnips, which are fine if you're into that kind of thing, but I thought I'd give it a go with some more exciting veg and turn it into something a bit more sturdy (and colourful).

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Garlic and Herb Chestnut Mushrooms with Goats Cheese

This is one of those recipe's that you don't really know when to eat it but you want to eat it all the time. I discovered it at breakfast. I made it again for lunch. I feel like it would be a mind-blowing canapé.

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Flourless Chocolate Cake with Almonds & Plums

This is for my gluten free friends. And the self-diagnosed gluten free. And the people who think being gluten free is a trend the cool kids are following and that 'coeliac' is a music genre. All of you will enjoy this cake.

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Artichoke & Bacon Pasta bake

I can't even begin to tell you how delicious this is. I almost passed out when eating it. That good.

Thursday, 15 January 2015

Baked Beans with Chorizo & Feta

If you're looking for a brunch which will fill the stomachs of men, impress your friends with myriad flavours, look stunning and make you fart for the rest of the weekend then you've found your dish.

Friday, 9 January 2015

Magnificent Whole Roasted Garlic

Look at them - magnificent aren't they? And so blooming easy. Little flowers of gooey glory.

Monday, 5 January 2015

Crunchy Bacon & Blue Cheese Salad

This is one of those salads you eat when you need a health kick but you aren't quite ready to entirely sacrifice indulgence.