Posts Tagged: chilli

Jul 10

Off with a bang



I worked once for Vivek Singh, chef of the Cinnamon Club and Cinnamon Kitchen and regular on Saturday Kitchen. He’s a brilliant chef – we’ve run coverage of his excellent cookbooks on the site previously and his recipes (link to a recipe). A friend recently told me that he had been developing a new range of Indian-inspired sausages and being a banger fan I couldn’t resist. Bangra bangers (I kid you not) are perfect for the barbecue and well worth checking out – they should be in your local supermarket.

To go with them I cooked up a crunchy, spicy treat taking advantage of delicious Jersey Royals.

Here’s my recipe for crushed potatoes with chilli,
coriander and tomatoes.

Jun 10

Cooking secrets



Everyone’s got them. A closely guarded family recipe, a grandmother’s explicit instruction or secret ingredients whispered to you by professional chefs.

Sometimes they are used daily in cooking; others, like my addition to guacamole, are stored away only to ping up at an opportune moment. A lack of oomph in the green sauce I made last week led to the memory trickling back of a chef telling me to use Tabasco to add punch, spice and depth to a guacamole – and it works a treat. It’s vinegary heat is an ideal counterpart to
the creamy avocado.

A little tip from Jeffrey Steingarten, the famous American food critic, tv personality and author – once you’ve got avocados ripe at room temperature, store them in a paper bag in the fridge. They’ll stay ripe for around a week to 10 days.

Spicy guacamole

May 09

Fresh and light – mozzarella with mint and chilli


As we move towards the summer months (until it all came abruptly to a stop this week!) my cooking gets lighter, with less saucing, less starches and stodges – and ultimately less cooked.

I lean towards green salads adorned with good grated parmesan, to bruschetta made so the bread slightly softens in the juice of the tomatoes. I also love cold meats and pickles, bowls of Jersey Royals dotted with butter and hummus and baba ganoush – the smoked aubergine puree that has no equal.

I like to serve up cold platters of these ingredients, arrangements which show colour, texture and serve to appetise with hot ciabatta or pitta on the side.

One of my favourite additions is this recipe – mozzarella with mint and chilli. The milkiness of the cheese cut through with the freshness of the mint and the zing of chilli lends a touch of vibrancy to the cool palate.

Try to use buffalo mozzarella here – its flavour is vastly superior

Buffalo mozzarella with mint and chilli dressing

Ingredients (serves 2)

•    Buffalo mozzarella
•    1 small bunch mint leaves, picked
•    ½ a red chilli
•    3 tbs extra virgin olive oil


Finely chop the mint. Deseed and finely dice the chilli. Add both to the olive oil. Slice the mozzarella into about eight pieces and spoon the oil, mint and chilli over, seasoning with sea salt.

Mar 09

A dunker’s delight

ch_560.jpgHaving focused on the art of bread-making recently I thought a little something to dunk it into might be nice. While a drizzle of olive oil and a scattering of sea salt are a great staple choice, this is a bit of a treat.

It was inspired by a little leftover sauce from a dinner last week of a roasted vegetables, griddled halloumi and toast rubbed with garlic. The piquant green sauce was the perfect foil, cutting through the saltiness of the cheese and the glaze of oil on the vegetables.

And there’s no need to restrict it just to a dip for your latest bread-making efforts. Try it spooned over crunchy fishcakes, dunk into it with frites or spread liberally over toast. Best made the day before, as the flavours develop deliciously overnight, it is a bed-fellow of the classic Argentinean sauce chimichurri, without the garlic.

A piquant green sauce for dipping – or meat and poultry


  • 110ml olive oil
  • 25ml white wine or cider vinegar
  • A large bunch of flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 tbs dried oregano
  • pinch chilli flakes (or more if you fancy)


Combine the ingredients in a blender till you have a slush. Pour into a jar, cover and keep in fridge overnight. Serve drizzled on toast.

Featuring WPMU Bloglist Widget by YD WordPress Developer