Tag Archives: peas

Indian-Inspired Kerala Stir-Fried Beef and Rice

Beef Stir-Fry (9069)The other day I posted one of my favourite entries in C&T on my Facebook page. It was an assignment for a Blogging University course (which has now ended) that included a quote. I remember not knowing what quote to choose, but being a creature of habit, and thus feeling like a hobbit most of the time, I decided to go for one from Tolkien’s masterpieces. I got loads of positive feedback for that piece and the recipe I included in it is one that I make again and again. I’m sure you’ll agree that a walnut and banana loaf cake is one of the most comforting bakes around. That and a scrumptious cup of thick hot chocolate.

So you won’t find many recipes on this blog that venture too much out of my comfort zone. C&T started out, and still is I think, a place to share what I cook at home, primarily in a small kitchen, as the ones I had back in the UK. Now I have a somewhat larger room to play in. I am lucky and I like the space, though it wasn’t easy to adjust to it.

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Warm Tortellini Salad (#PastaFriday) and something that bothered me today.

Tortellini Salad (9883)

This post is supposed to go up tomorrow but I have some totally unplanned time today to write. Tomorrow will be a busy day and anyhow something happened this afternoon which I feel deserves a mention. So if you don’t mind sticking around just for a little while, I would like to share something with you. Some will not like me after this but in this space I’m allowed to speak my mind and get to the personal stuff once in a while. Don’t worry, you will find a recipe at the end of his post, but you will have noticed that by now in the title. Here we go.

If you know me personally, or even if you come by my blog or Facebook wall once in a while, you will notice that I take many matters to heart. C&T is mostly about food and I understand that’s why many people come here. Hopefully you stop by because you like the recipes and photos, and my occasional rants about food, and I’m always glad when you pop in and say hello, both on this blog and also anywhere else you can find me on social media. Reading comments is something I hold dear and I don’t take these for granted. No blog comes to life without readers, both the regular ones and those who visit sporadically. I have been criticised many times, and that’s OK. Really. I do get upset sometimes but I am learning to let some things go.

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Peas with Fresh Garlic and Parsley

Peas with Fresh Garlic and Parsley (0132)

It seems as though the Sun left us for a while this morning, and it could not come back out from the gloomy clouds for the rest of the day. Rain is also on the menu, but I am not minding it one bit. Last week was hectic but absolutely lovely. My friend’s visit was a success. We went to loads of places around Malta and she seems to have enjoyed her holiday here. Now I’m taking a little time to adjust to my routine again, but I’m happy and I have a rest-day planned. I will be cooking though and I can tell it will be good as the temperature also gave me a rest and I will be savouring every second.

For today’s lunch I will make an Indian-inspired recipe for buttered chicken and will work on that as soon as I publish this post, and plan to make this as a side. I think it will pair up well with the chicken and frankly I think it will make a delicious side to any other dish.

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Two Simple Recipes: Vegetable Soup and Garlic and Chilli Kale

Garlic and Chilli Kale with Chunky Vegetable Soup (8631)

It’s still reasonably cold in the Med and I’m still nursing a very bad cold. My neighbour’s kid is having a ball running amuck right above my head, most probably sitting on a desk chair and sprinting across the corridor. Either that or playing boċċi. Who knows? Can’t imagine the grief he’s giving his mum, but I can definitely picture the grief he’s giving me!

So just when my head starts to ache I decide to post two recipes on C&T. Simple stuff but they are just the things I want to eat when I’m inside with quite some time to spend in the kitchen. There will be plenty of chances in the future for chips. That’s exactly what’s keeping me going! *Checking my forehead for fever*

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Simple Fish Curry

Thai Fish Curry (8096)

I could have sworn I posted this curry recipe before. But as it happened I was browsing C&T earlier today and realised that I didn’t. It has been some time since my last one and I still have to get back into the gist of things. We are really busy at the moment, with a move to Malta coming up shortly in just a few weeks at my end. I am still getting used to the idea, not to mention preparing myself for the killer summer months ahead. Unfortunately I don’t have many summer recipes lined up, and this move threw me more than I could have ever imagined. So please forgive me if you see a few typos scattered here and there. I’m too distracted and preoccupied these days, which is not a good thing. (Seven years in Surrey flew by in an instant but what an experience it was!) I don’t feel organised at all and I’m trying to schedule as many posts, photos and recipes as I can. What I must do though is to take an August break. But more on that in future posts.

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Creamy Pasta with Sage and Peas

Creamy Pasta with Peas (9021)

I have a question for you. Are there days when you are constantly on the move or in some kind of a rush? Every single day I hear you shout! I lead a small life and generally I have a very fixed timetable. Usually. There are times though when everything I’ve learnt about time management just goes out of whack. Whatever I planned for the day just gets thrown out of the window and I just…just…squeeze in the basic things on my to-do list. Do you have one of those? I do. Crossing out all the tasks rarely happens, no news there I guess, though I relish that yes-I-have-achieved-so-much-today feeling. Don’t you love that?

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Ricotta and Spinach Pie

Ricotta and Spinach Pie (8180)I would have liked to share with you loads of foodie and non-foodie photos I took over the past few months. However over the weekend I felt like baking a pie. I have written about my ricotta pie recipe quite a long time ago, and I felt quite torn about posting this recipe once more for fear of repeating myself too much. However I don’t think I made this for months, if not a year. My fondness for it has won hands down though, so I give it to you once more with some changes to the filling ingredients, and of course with a new set of pictures. I should add that the dishes of food that you see throughout this blog are eaten a few moments after those pictures are taken. The sweet things are generally shared, and what you see is what you get.

Ricotta and Spinach Pie (8171)This weekend was quite full on, with a day trip to Kent and a visit to Chartwell on Saturday. I then decided that Sunday was going to be all about some R&R, with some baking thrown in, just for kicks. Weekdays are usually left for the no-fuss stuff, so it’s nice to be able to spend an afternoon baking things which take a little bit more energy to make. J has been lovely as always and helped to iron roll out the pastry. Shortcrust gives me a headache sometimes (give me that elastic pizza dough anytime) but it’s worth the faff.

Ricotta and Spinach Pie (8172)Ricotta and Spinach Pie (8175)I can be a little OCD on this one but I prefer to use ounces for the pastry! I was taught that the basic rule of thumb for shortcrust is that the amount of flour should be twice as much (by weight) as the amount of fat.

  • 8 oz plain flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon of salt (optional)
  • 2 oz cold butter
  • 2 oz vegetable shortening
  • around 6 teaspoons cold water (the colder the better, especially if you have warm hands like me!)

Mix the flour, baking powder and butter in a bowl, using your thumbs and second and third fingers. Rub the butter into the flour for about 5 to 10 minutes, until it looks like breadcrumbs. The colder everything is the better. Add the water gradually as needed, remembering not to overwork the pastry. Wrap the finished product in cling film and set aside in the fridge until you need it. I like to keep it there for at least an hour, but I would say 30 minutes is enough.

For the ricotta filling:

  • 500g ricotta
  • 200g frozen peas
  • 300g baby spinach leaves, steamed in a pan with a couple of tablespoons of water
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 large egg

To prepare the filling, mix the ricotta, frozen peas, spinach, salt and pepper in a bowl, and taste. When the seasoning is as you like it, add the egg and give the ingredients one last light mix. When you are ready to assemble to pie, preheat the oven to 180ºC.

To assemble the pie, divide the pastry into two and roll it out on a clean and floured surface, a few inches larger in size than your pie dish. With the help of your rolling pin, lift the pastry and place it on the bottom of the dish. Fill the pastry with the ricotta mixture, then roll out the second piece of pastry and place this on the top. Secure the edges with your fingers. Prong with a knife, brush the top with preferably a beaten egg. Place in a preheated oven for around an hour, till it turns golden. It’s comfort food at it’s best.

Ricotta and Spinach Pie (8176)Ricotta and Spinach Pie (8177)Let it stand for a good 20 minutes before serving – it makes cutting it into slices easier and neater, especially for picnics, but don’t let this hold you back! Enjoy!

Rob x