Sweet potato and red pepper soup

Necessity being the mother of invention, this soup was made necessary by the imminent arrival of my next veg box before I’d finished using the last one. In that sense, it’s just another iteration of our regular ‘if it’s in the fridge, it’s in the pan’ lunchtime soup that everyone does, and no-one really needs…

Old school crispy pancakes

The stated purpose of this blog is to enable your very own smugface by showing you easy ways to achieve things that look like they’ve taken a lot more effort. I regret to tell you that this recipe goes against all of that. It is a lot of faff, involving many different stages and most…

Jalapeno macaroni cheese

Christmas usually starts for me sitting at the back of Reading Station, finger poised on the car stereo, Fairytale of New York cued up and ready to blast out at top volume when my London-based youngest daughter appears off the train with too many presents packed in a ridiculous suitcase big enough for a year…

Pumpkin soda bread

I hate wasting food. Every year, the grandkids carve pumpkins: every year I try to work out what to do with the flesh. Because you have to whittle it out, it’s just not suitable for curries which need big lumps, and it’s hard to make pumpkin korokke successfully with the flesh because carving pumpkins are…

Chocolate blancmange

I’d forgotten how easy this is. It’s literally the pudding of childhood – not mine but my daughter’s. When she was a baby, I tried to give her one of those jars of chocolate pudding. She spat it out in disgust. I finished the jar, and the next one. Anyway, I eventually discovered that chocolate…

Curried goat

I love curry goat, and to be honest it’s easy enough to get where I live. There are quite a few Caribbean food places within easy reach, so there’s no need to cook it. But I can’t resist a challenge. Actually the cooking is dead easy. The biggest challenge is finding someone that sells goat,…

Nice (Chelsea) buns

The Chelsea bun is the queen of currant buns, being both delicious and an object of ritual in the way you have to eat it (unwound from the end, obviously – anything else is abhorrent).

Wear a damn mask

The news that people will be required to wear a face mask in shops in the UK from 24 July will no doubt prompt whinging and hand wringing from some. Not me: we’ve had cloth masks since April. I made them for all my family when I realised that, as I was deemed extremely vulnerable…

Momo-a-go-go

Just down the road from me in Reading is a barracks formerly used by a Gurkha regiment. As a consequence, we have a large Nepalese community, and our Indian restaurants often sport names like the Everest Tandoori and the Himalayan Hot Spot. We also have restaurants with momo in their names: Momo House, Namaste Momo….

The Forbury Lion

We were settling down to watch Monty Python’s Life of Brian (one of my favourite films to write about, Husband’s first viewing) on Saturday night when my phone started pinging. Messages from friends and relatives: “Horrible news about the Forbury Gardens. Are you okay?” The subsequent hours were filled with all sorts of horrors: initial…

Limoncello ice-cream

This is the easiest and one of the most delicious cold puddings ever. We first had it in the Tuscan Kitchen in Rye (sadly recently closed). When we got home I looked for recipes and was delighted to find that [a] it’s ridiculously easy and [b] it would use up that holiday-bought bottle of limoncello….

Malaysian curry chicken (kari ayam)

Like the rest of the entire world, we have taken to quizzing as a way to communicate with our children. Also like the rest of the entire world, we are all now obsessed with food: what are you cooking, what have you eaten, what are you going to cook? Meals punctuate the otherwise unpunctuated days;…