Pret’s new porridge

This is a challenging gluten and dairy free product. Just arrived at Sheldon Square. I predict it will be phased out quite quickly. It looks like a pimped version of Chinese congee, and contains: quinoa, amaranth, flax seeds, chia, whole oats and organic coconut water. I found it hard to eat, extremely worthy and not very tasty. Here’s a picture:

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Braised leeks, courgette and peas with giant stale couscous

Cooked by Nicky.

We are getting a lot of leeks in the veg box which I suppose is what seasonal eating, and Riverford’s preference for local or low-food-mile produce, gives you. So we need to love leeks.

In this dish, the leeks, courgettes (also Riverford) and frozen peas were braised deliciously in white wine and made a lovely Sunday dinner after a lunch at Zizzi’s in Covent Garden. The slight let down was the giant couscous, which tasted stale.

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Leeks and courgettes gently softened and sweated in butter and olive oil, seasoned with salt and pepper, white wine added and braised for a while. Frozen peas added too.

Spaghetti bolognese and Semifreddo

Seb announced as I was reheating the bolognese sauce and cooking pasta, that he didn’t like spaghetti bolognese. So I decided to pimp dinner and serve the pasta, bolognese and a salad (using the oil and vinegar mum n dad gave us for Xmas), ‘family style’. I did a jug of iced water with floating clementine slices to add to the ceremony of the proceedings.

As expected, when Seb served himself, he found the bolognese delicious and ate a lot of it.

I especially enjoyed it because it made a family meal feel special – good food (if basic) and making a proper family event of having dinner together.

Following it up with Nicky’s semifreddo – a Jamie Oliver recipe using Marathon bars – made it an awesome fully rounded memorable New Years Day meal. Without hours of slaving to make something fancy…

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Bulk cookery

4 dinners of spag Bol
3 dinners of chilli men sauce
4 lunches of leek and sweet potato soup

All made yesterday in a massive cookathon that lasted 3 hours. Good to keep the freezer stocked up!

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