Posts Tagged: spring

Mar 10

Some spice for spring

Salads may seem like food for the warmer months – but sometimes winter cravings must be satisfied – particularly as we edge towards spring. Often it’s just a simple tomato and mozzarella salad to perk up a cold afternoon, served with warm sourdough to mop up the juices and scattered with sea salt flakes.

At other times it might be a wintry salad of pears, rocket, a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and honey and a healthy amount of a beautiful blue cheese like Benleigh crumbled in.

Normally, though, I go for something Asian – one of the salads or ‘yam’ in Thai, either served hot or with enough chillies to put some fire in your belly and drive off the coldest weather.

These warm salads sum up all the things I love about Thai food. Spicy with birds’ eye chillies, aromatic with refreshing lemongrass and pungent lime leaves, with a perfectly balanced sweet, sour and salty dressing, savoury with the deep mellow flavour of fish sauce.

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Mar 10

Work some marmalade magic with a rib-sticking steamed pud


Serving a steamed pudding is a brilliant way to end a meal. Not only are they utterly delicious, particularly with lashings of double cream, ice cream or creme fraiche but they are a doddle to prepare and also completely forgiving in terms of cooking time.

They will happily sit on a very, very low heat for quite literally hours – as long as we watch over them occasionally to make sure they don’t boil dry – which I must confess to doing once and redecorated the kitchen in a rather odd shade of sponge!

Marmalade makes a wonderful addition to a dark, moist sponge. In my case I’d always go for a dark, bitter one like a Seville – but then I’m rather spoilt as my mum makes an incredible one!

You could use anything you like here though – raspberry or blackcurrant jam, golden or maple syrup, even a little black treacle – I’d even go as far as Nutella and peanut butter – but that might be a little OTT. Although with a great big dollop of vanilla ice cream I can see the appeal.

The original pud recipe contains elements of Delia – I tend to up the butter content when I’m making something like this as it should be rich, moist and luxurious. After all, what are puds for?

Click here for my recipe for marmalade steamed pudding

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