Ready Steady Cook

This week’s veg box: potatoes, carrots, cauliflower, broccoli, mushrooms, leeks, curly kale.

It’s the day before my next veg box delivery and I’m staring at 1kg Valor potatoes, 5 carrots, 3 leeks and a couple of sprouting onions from the week before and wondering what’s for supper. I’ve also brought to the table a large red chilli (not organic from Tesco) and a couple of pork and apple sausages from the Riverford organic meat consignment  I ordered in for Easter weekend. I feel the need for meat and some heat.

Outside the temperature’s dropped and rain is spitting (bring it on otherwise the water shortage here in Hampshire will get worse, and my newly sown broad beans from Jim will not grow big and strong). The rest of the bed is reserved for the veg plants due tomorrow in a box to grow from Riverford.

A quick recap on what happened to all the other veg rations this week:

A big bag of bushy curly kale turned into a Grecian Greens Pie wrapped in filo pastry, otherwise known as Spanakopitta which provided supper for two and enough leftovers for two lunches. Turns out curly kale is a really good stand-in for spinach in this recipe.

The one legged veg, i.e. cauliflower, broccoli and mushrooms gave themselves up to a stir fry lunch then went on to provide two cold lunches after getting mixed up with quinoa and excited by a little bit of chilli jam on the side.

That’s eight meals provided for out of a possible fourteen over the week including dinner tonight: grilled sausages and potatoes with red chillies and saute leeks. The unclaimed carrots and onion will roll over into next week’s vegetable lottery.

I’ll cook all 1 kg of the Valour potatoes and they will valiantly re-appear in Chocolate Potato Cake because Easter is coming (more on that later) and in Smoked Salmon Quiche with potato pastry because my mum is coming. All the potato recipes have been inspired by the Potato book. Somehow every vegetable finds it’s place in the end including the veg peelings that wind up in the compost bin (food for the garden).

Red Hot Potatoes Take: 1 red chilli, finely chopped (de-seeded), 1 small onion sliced, a pinch of cumin seeds, 2 tbsp olive oil, 3 medium sized potatoes, peeled and quartered, 1 rasher of bacon cut into bits (optional), coriander leaf (pinched a leaf of the Vietnamese coriander growing in the kitchen) and seasoning. Serves 2

Cook potatoes in boiling salted water. Heat oil and cook chilli and cumin seeds for a minute or so, add bacon bits. Add sliced onions and cook until softened. Stir until bacon crisp then add cooked potatoes. Toss together with other ingredients until potatoes start to brown. Remove from heat and add chopped fresh coriander. I used the first leaf from my Vietnamese Coriander growing in the shelter of my kitchen until it’s warm enough to grow outdoors. Wow, this dish punches above it’s weight in flavour, that and the melt in the mouth texture of the Valor potato, I’ll definitely be making this again. Meanwhile there is a second helping in the pan!

The combination of the flaming potatoes and the sweetness of the apple and pork sausages and the no nonsense leeks makes this a very hearty meal. Just what I need to warm me up on this cool, damp April evening.







2 thoughts on “Ready Steady Cook

  1. Well I’ll be the first and no doubt the worst Linda —– blogging that is ! ——but your courgette cake was delicious and you know using veg in cakes and puddings is not only delicious but really good in times of austerity —— my grandmother’s really good Christmas pudding was bulked out with grated carrots which made it really moist and quite nutty and our family mincemeat was always made using green grapes which were bought in November and then a session round the kitchen table with the family de pipping and peeling was part of the build up to Christmas and oh so difficult not to pop one into your mouth —- strange to think in those days that grapes were a real luxury and only really seen if you were under the weather {apparently in November they were less expensive } —— the grapes re placed the suet so it was a very light and fruity mixture but if it lingered in the pantry beyond January it used to blow it’s top off and splatter everything with sticky fementing goo —– and do you know that happened every year ! part of my growing up Christmas tradition and I still miss it !
    Talking about curly kale it makes a good crispy snack or soup topping if you massage the leaves { not the stalks} with olive oil and then season either with salt and pepper or wasabi or chilli and then gently dry in a very very low oven or as the oven cools down after cooking or in a warming drawer x

    • Thank you Sarah for being first past the post to post a post here and sharing your lovely memories! I also remember when grapes were a luxury. I did some of my growing up in Malta alongside grapes and oranges growing in our garden so it was a shock to come back home during the 50s and discover these fruits were scarce. It makes me laugh to think of those naughty grapes exploding after Christmas and that terrible mess in the pantry (not funny for the person clearing up). As for turning curly kale into a crispy snack I’ll be giving that a go next time it comes round in the veg box so thank you again.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *