Lamb Kofta Kebabs with Balsamic Courgette Salad

These lamb koftas are suprisingly easy to make, I wondered for most of yesterday why I’d not attempted them before. Seeing as we’re not going to Greece on holiday this summer I decided to bring a bit of Greece to us, in the form of food.

I have to admit, small crimes were committed for the sake of this recipe. We don’t grow any fresh herbs and this dish was crying out for some fresh rosemary. I chucked a hoodie on and roamed the streets, looking for a nearby garden with easy access fresh rosemary. I felt (and probably looked) a bit dodgy but needs must – and luckily I found some growing over a garden hedge. A few sprigs later, I was back in the kitchen, giddy AF.

So, make sure you either own, buy, or steal some rosemary for this recipe. It really needs it. The secret is to really chop it very small using scissors, anything any bigger than 1mm or so will be too big and stick out of your mince mixture and it won’t compact against the skewer. Mint is also a great shout but I couldn’t find any to forage (or ahem, steal).

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Pressure Cooker Pulled Beef Brisket

I first ate pulled beef maybe 5 years ago at a restaurant in Leeds called Cattle Grid which has since shut down. They did pulled pork or pulled beef sandwiches for £5 at lunchtime, with chips and slaw. I’ve never had as good pulled beef since! With a huge craving in tow, I set about trying to recreate it. You can slow cook this if you don’t have a  pressure cooker, or even just put it in the oven on a very low heat.

As a side note, some of you might know I got a new job in March at High Street TV, who produce the Pressure King Pro (or PKP). It’s something we developed ourselves and is a really neat piece of kit. This post is 100% off my own back, I really like the product and can’t imagine my life without it now.

Anyway back to the beef. You need a nice bit of brisket – ours was just under 2kg. Look for plenty marbling, this means it has lots of fat running through it which will keep it moist and delicious. 


I marinated this overnight in some mustard, BBQ sauce, sugar, smoked paprika, cumin, garlic, salt and pepper. Wrap it in clingfilm in the fridge and give it a rub and a turn after 6 hours or so. Then it’s into the pressure or slow cooker, make sure you brown it on all sides first. Then I added a mug full of water and set the PKP to ‘meat’ for 1 hour 15 and it was falling apart. If you use a slow cooker I’d allow 4-5 hours, same in the oven. 

When it’s ready, shred the beef using two forks and it should come apart quite easily. Keep the cooking juices and add a little cornflour to them to thicken into a gravy, if you want, or just pour over the beef to keep it nice and moist.

Serve in bread buns with homemade slaw, or if you’re feeling wintery like I was, just add to a big plate of mash.

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Griddled Mediterranean Tofu with Vegetables

Now THIS is a recipe that will give you a hankering for summer. Long days, al fresco dining, BBQs wafting through the air… yes please! It feels like so long since we’ve had good weather but now we can see the sunshine again a bit more and it’s so exciting.

We’d usually be thinking of our summer holiday this time of year but with trying to buy a house this year it’s something we’re delaying so we can save, or at least go for a cheap last minute deal. So instead I’m living my summer vicariously through FOOD.

Nothing says summer like griddled vegetables, spicy harissa marinades, no siree. The leftovers also double up as a great lunch.

Don’t be put off by the slabs of tofu. The marinade makes it taste gorgeous and combination of pressing before griddling gives it a nice crisp texture, a bit like halloumi. Speaking of, you could trade the tofu for halloumi, but it wouldn’t be anywhere near as healthy. 😉

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Yummy Greek Marinated Chicken

I’d never thought of using yoghurt before in a marinade, but I’d seen a few recipes on Pinterest that used it and wanted to give it a try (I’m awful with this, I can never remember where I’ve seen or read recipes!) Anyway. I took my usual Greek chicken marinade and added Greek yoghurt and hey presto – it’s delicious!

As a bonus, we had extra yoghurt leftover to make tzatsiki, perfect for serving the chicken with in pitta bread and some salad. There’s no pictures of the actual chicken-in-pitta situation here, I find it so hard to photograph sandwiches so they look good! So you’re just getting the chicken itself, but trust me it was great in a pitta. 🙂

 

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Easy Red Onion, Pepper and Tomato Homemade Salsa

This salsa is really easy to make and looks really impressive!

I actually have my uncle to thank for this recipe where he served it at a family Christmas party, I’ve been recreating it ever since!
It goes great with tacos, fajitas or even just plain old tortilla crisps. The pictures don’t contain cucumber as my boyfriend is allergic but it adds a lovely cooling effect. Sweetcorn is also a great addition which I put in after these pictures.

This keeps in the fridge for a couple of days and is also great sprinkled over salads.

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Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Shoulder Sandwiches

I’ve done this once before but I didn’t take nearly enough  pictures, and the previous attempt was also in the oven with a fairly hefty 4.5kg bone-in shoulder, whereas this one was a meagre 2kg bone-out jobby from Tesco.

You get a lot of pork for 2kg, I tell you. We made this on New Year’s Eve as part of a gourmet 3 course meal in, as I was still recovering from the devil’s illness – tonsillitis. I managed to have it three times over December and January and I’m still not 100% yet, fortunately Christmas Day itself was illness free!

Anyway. A 2kg pork shoulder is plenty for two hungry people – it would feed four easily with leftovers. We have LOTS of pork in the freezer, but that’s only a good thing really isn’t it?

I’ll leave my coleslaw recipe for another day but it really does pay to make this stuff yourself. It is SO easy, and tastes way nicer than what you get in shops. I typically slice cabbage, red onion and grated carrot and toss in a bit of lemon juice, mayonnaise, creme fraiche or yoghurt and a dash of mustard. Serve on white baps with sweet potato fries or salad as a side.

 

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