Monday, 31 October 2011

hugh's tahini-dressed courgette and green bean salad

False dawn over, we're officially "back" and this time we've got a sponsor! Barnes-Cubed now comes to you courtesy of Kendra & Brian Kats - now with added Finn, for all your Kendra Kats needs.

Not only am I typing on the keyboard of a kindly-loaned laptop (my elegant ballerina of a wife having knocked a glass of wine across the keyboard of our laptop, permanently killing it), but tonight's dish comes from Hugh's new book, River Cottage Veg Everyday!, which the Bolger's bought for my birthday, and Kiki recommended this recipe. Clearly they are the ace-est people in the world, and the quicker they move to SW14, the better!

She's right to recommend it, because it's alarmingly easy but really packed-full of flavours. Perhaps we could've done with slightly less-chilli, and I think my budget tahini-"sauce" didn't exactly have the promised Ottolenghi consistency, but it was still pretty darn tasty.

hugh's tahini-dressed courgette and green bean salad

We would've been even more virtuous if we hadn't spent the hour or so leading up to dinner eating all of Milo's trick-or-treat sweets whilst he was asleep, and that huge packet of crisps I'd manage to save from Saturday...

Wine Time
So, given I now actually work in the wine trade I figured I'd best start trying to put some of my new-found knowledge to good use, by trying to match wine to our dinners. Obviously this isn't an exact science, particularly as I'm still at the stage of taking whatever is in the sample cupboard, but hopefully it'll get better as time goes by, and my liver hardens up. I'll be clear, most of the wines I suggest will be ones we sell, but that's more because I know them, rather than anything more sinister. Although if you do buy any, that will be amay-zing!

Okay, this is quite a power-packed meal with the chilli, smokey courgette, mint, and sun-dried tomatoes all competing with each other, but ultimately the dressing is the dominant flavour. It's an odd combination of very citrusy combined with the tahini's creamy-yet-gritty consistency, so you'd need something equally high in acidity to compliment the lemon and orange juice, and to cut through the creaminess. Something like a Sauvignon Blanc would work really well I think, either the L'escargot at a bargain £7.95, the Morton from New Zealand if you prefer something New World-y, or the Coteaux du Giennois 2010, if you want to push the boat out a bit.

Was that useful at all? We'll see how it goes I suppose...

tahini-dressed courgette and green bean salad - Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, River Cottage Veg Everyday!, p74

Monday, 17 October 2011

waitrose spinach, tomato and chick pea curry

And we're back... no thanks for Virgin Media, the fricking idiots! So, what have you missed? Weeeelll, loads to be honest, far too much to spend the next two months catching up on the last two months, but essentially we've moved home (although we're still in the neighbourhood - go SW14!), and we've eaten loads of loads of experimental meals - go figure. Take it as read it was all highly successful, naturellement!

Tonight, we're going old skool as we're both tired after a hearty weekend playing with the Taylor's, and we both fancy an early night. Also, as Ana's got a bit of a persistent cold, I figure she could do with a little extra ginger to combat the snot.

Okay, it's the most exciting return in the world, but it is a return.

spinach, tomato and chick pea curry - Waitrose Recipe Cards, Early September 2010