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Cookery book club - July - Hugh F-W Veg and curries by Madhur Jaffrey and the Hairy Bikers (vroom vroom)

(343 Posts)
tigerlilygrr Mon 24-Jun-13 13:15:14

Come join the Mumsnet cookery bookclub! Each month we choose two cookery books - one popular, like Nigella / Jamie / Delia, so you probably already have it / can borrow it and one a bit more unusual. We cook a minimum of two recipes each - you choose the recipe, they just have to be ones you have never cooked before- which works out at four new recipes each month.Then we chat about them!

For June our books were:
- Mexican Food Made Easy by Thomasina Miers
- Thirty Minute Meals by Jamie Oliver
And we posted here

For July our books are:
- Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall Veg Every Day
- Madhur Jaffrey Ultimate Curry Bible AND / OR madhur Jaffrey's Curry Easy AND / OR Hairy Bikers' Great Curries

For August, our books will be:
- Fuchsia Dunlop Every Grain of Rice (chopsticks at the ready ladies)
- Dan Lepard Short and Sweet

We will always try to pick at least one book with recipes available on the Internet, and local libraries are great for cookbooks if you can order in advance. We pick books three months ahead so will be choosing September's books this month.

HuevosRancheros Tue 25-Jun-13 18:30:00

I made the lamb dhansak from HB, but used quorn insted of lamb. And didn't put butternut squash in as I don't like it. Curry was lovely.
Also made the sag paneer, really really lovely.

I do have a gripe with this book, though In some recipes (not sure what %, but certainly the dhansak), it doesn't include many spices in the recipe, just uses 'curry paste' (i.e. a shop bought one, Pataks or whatever). It says this is for ease, but I didn't have any in, and wanted to make it from scratch, so ended up googling a recipe and making up a batch. Didn't mind making it, didn't take long, but think the HB should have included a recipe for a paste, for those inclined.

(if anyone is interested, I used a Jamie recipe as it was the first one google presented me with, and it was pretty good. But that was what made the curry, so a bit cross with HB for that)

Rant over.

Hmmm I have ignored any recipes which include ready made curry paste as for me, the interest and the pleasure is in making it myself.

HuevosRancheros Tue 25-Jun-13 18:38:14

I'm the same, cat, but dhansak is my favourite curry, soi had to do it. I had already emotionally committed to it before I actually looked at the ingredients smile

grin

Has anyone made their basic Dahl? I did and we all really liked it, even lentil-disliking daughter ate the leftovers for supper the next day

HuevosRancheros Tue 25-Jun-13 18:47:28

I was going to, but then chickened out and made the dhal I always make, from the Curry Secret.

As a complete aside, I have a lovely lamb stock going at the moment! I work in a butcher's and was watching the guys stripping the meat from a lamb breast today and throwing the bones into the meat bin. I retrieved some of the bones (much to my mother's horror grin) and asked for loads more and now have a lovely lamb stock bubbling away on the stove. And all for free!!! Now have to decide what to make with it!

HuevosRancheros, I have that book too and really like it!

Don't make HFW's dhal - tis rubbish.

I've got Madhur J's World Vegetarian and love it, so I'll make a curry out of that. Not sure re HFW as have been thoroughly underwhelmed by it thus far. Might try the spring onion tart thing.

snoworneahva Tue 25-Jun-13 20:59:30

I think Hugh can't do currys - I've yet to come across an impressive recipe - so I just by pass them. Avocado, grapefruit and chilli salad for lunch tomorrow - sounds unusual so looking forward to it.

AlohaMama Wed 26-Jun-13 02:42:44

The trouble is, who can compare to madhur for currys??

Keep recommendations for HFW coming. After initially being excited when I got this book, whenever I leaf through I don't see anything I really want to make.

fallenempires Wed 26-Jun-13 09:28:03

cat which bread recipes do you use instead?
snoworneahva HFW has a nice baked chicken curry recipe in River Cottage Everyday.It's not particularly spicy but more fragrant.
I agree with avoiding recipes which advocate using ready made pastes as I think one of the joys of Indian cooking is toasting and grinding the spices.

Fallen, have to dash to work but will post a link later smile

PeteCampbellsRecedingHairline Wed 26-Jun-13 16:58:26

Just got MJ's Curry Bible.

There's no recipe for Saag Paneer.sad

HuevosRancheros Wed 26-Jun-13 18:36:28

I did the Hairy Bikers' Sag Paneer, here
Very good. I used frozen spinach. Also, I simmered the paneer in the curry for a bit, after frying, to get more flavour into it. If you do this, don't bother with the semolina coating, as it all washes off into the sauce!

I wouldn't avoid ones with curry pastes, just make your own paste.

I just think they should give a recipe, that's all smile

Ooh, two books I have!

I love the HB Curry book, my top favourites from it so far are:
- prawn puris. Don't miss these! It is a really refreshing delicate beautiful starter, very classy tasting
- chicken tikka. Fabulously easy, but note the need to make your spiced yogurt mix the night before to marinade the chicken overnight. But then you simply have to put the chicken under a hot grill for about 5-10 mins and turn it once making it super super easy on the day and therefore a great extra dish if you are making several and don't want to implode with stress at the last min. Or is that just me??
-Afghan aubergines. I just serve these as a vegetable dish alongside other curries, and omit the yogurt base as I wasn't keen on the concept. The aubergine dish is sublime. All silky and rich and luscious. And requires basically no input for the final 40 mins, leaving you free to knock up other bits and pieces like bhajis!

The channa massala was lovely, but then I adore chickpeas so it's right up my street!

Naans didn't work for me though.

I have a different MJ book "Illustrated indian Cookery" and expect there's some crossovers. Her vegetable pilau is fabulous, as is her Cabbage and peas dish.

HFW.
Chachouka is really delicious, a great breakfast, or a really nice lunch/dinner. Goes well with sausages But if you want it for breakfast I would advise making the tomato sauce the night before as it takes a while. Then I just warm it up in the frying pan, make the wells, crack the eggs in and put a lid over it for about 3 mins til the eggs are done, saves faffing around baking it in the oven for 15 mins which I can't see the point of.
The aubergine parmiagiana was nice.
And I am very partial to the refried beans, not because they are particularly amazing, but because I love the spicy pulse/salsa/cheese in pitta combo and it's quick and easy.
His quinoa and courgette salad was really good actually - we had it cold and that was fab, but I can imagine warm still hot would have been better still.
His curries however look rubbish curry snob here Just a bit bland.

LordEmsworth Wed 26-Jun-13 21:54:27

From HFW I love:
Caponata
Chachouka
Kale and mushroom lasagne is fiddly but really nice
The flatbreads
Mushroom stoup
Quinoa and courgette salad
Squash, mushroom and goat's cheese salad
Roast potato & aubergines

maniacbug Wed 26-Jun-13 22:42:15

Ooh, you're all here already! Lots of lovely suggestions, am going to have to read again from the beginning and take notes.
I am ridiculously excited about a month of curries, though still waiting for HB to arrive.... Seems very popular. Aubergine curry is my absolute favourite so going to try the Afghan aubergine first - thanks for tip spiltthetea! (If anyone has Rick Stein's Far Eastern Odyssey, the aubergine curry with tomatoes, ginger + fennel seeds is incredible.)
Anyone got any of Anjum Anand's books? I tend to alternate between her and MJ.

maniacbug Wed 26-Jun-13 22:48:32

Huevos just clicked on your sag paneer link. I want some RIGHT NOW!

ScienceRocks Wed 26-Jun-13 22:54:41

I've scheduled in masala dosa, lamb pasanda and chicken Katsura curry for next week from HB. My mum is coming down for the next few days so I have placed an order for some of the more obscure ingredients with her (she is Indian (as am I) and cooks Indian food every day so buys all the spices etc in huge bags). She thinks it hugely amusing that I am going to attempt dosas as she says they are fiendishly difficult, but not as amusing as the fact that I will be cooking curries based on recipes by two Geordie blokes smile

I have the HFW book.

The chachouka is lovely but double the quantities if you actually want to feed 4. It is not generous portion-wise.
My lot loved the spouffle (the spinach version) and the vegeree.
The chilli and herb polenta sticks are good. The kids love them. Add more chilli than he suggests though, or you won't taste it at all.
I tried a recipe for some kind of South American (Chilean? Peruvian?) squash and bean stew from the soup section but it was not good. Watery and bland. (And the end result looked nothing like the picture in the book).

PeteCampbellsRecedingHairline Thu 27-Jun-13 08:58:48

I've had a read through the MJ Curry Bible and I'm not enthused by anything.

Will try HB instead.

PeteCampbellsRecedingHairline Thu 27-Jun-13 08:59:48

Huevos- I've just seen your sash paneer link. Thanks.

I could eat some now. blush

ScienceRocks Thu 27-Jun-13 09:40:23

Slightly off topic, but could I enter a plea for Paul Hollywood's How To Bake for September please? I have made lots of the bread recipes (including sourdough) but I need to summon the courage to try some of the sweet pastries smile

PeteCampbellsRecedingHairline Thu 27-Jun-13 11:53:31

Sash paneer? Saag!

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