Cookery book club - June - Mexican Food Made Easy (Thomasina Miers) and Thirty Minute Meals (Jamie Oliver)

(375 Posts)
tigerlilygrr Mon 27-May-13 11:05:25

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 May, our books were:
- Jerusalem by Ottolenghi
- Kitchen Diaries
And we posted here

For June our books are:
- Mexican Food Made Easy by Thomasina Miers
- Thirty Minute Meals by Jamie Oliver

For July our books will be:
- Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall Veg Every Day
- Madhur Jaffrey Ultimate Curry Bible

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 August's books this month.

tigerlilygrr Mon 27-May-13 11:15:26

Right, I am going to abuse my position as thread starter to enthuse about Mexican Food Made Easy. This is one if my favourite books ever; it opened my eyes to Mexican food. It is certainly a weekend cookbook but the results are so delicious, it's worth the effort.

My top recommendation is that many of the recipes use chipotles en adobo which is a recipe early in the book. This requires you to buy chipotle chilies which I'm told you can get from Tesco but which I buy from, or the chili stand in Borough Market (or... honourable mention... Casa Mexico in Bethnal Green which is a bit far for me but which is awesome). I highly recommend making this first ... It takes about an hour but produces a large Kilner jar which is two thirds full. It seems to keep forever, I guess because of the chillies and sugar and vinegar. Don't be put off by the number of chillies; it is pleasantly spicy but not hot. I blend it all but you can blend some and keep some chillies whole if you prefer.

On a previous thread sciencerocks also recommended a substitute paste so hopefully she'll be back to remind me what it is.

In terms of recipes, I haven't made a bad one yet but really like the meatballs de mehico, the chicken moles, the pepper stuffed with goats cheese and mango, the salads, all the taco fillings, the pineapple cheesecake, the churros and chocolate sauce, the chilled rice pudding... I could go on!

Tiger- I'm glad you've enthused as I was imming and ahing over whether to buy it. I have Mexican food at home but have yet to make anything from it, though there is plenty that I fancy. I have an Amazon giftcard that will buy Mexican made simple now. Thanksgrin

Kneedeepindaisies Mon 27-May-13 19:59:18

Picking up the Mexican book this week. Am looking forward to it.

I've already got the Jamie one which I find a bit dull, but will have another look through.

I haven't even done kd from may yet! I'm on holiday for the first 2 weeks of June so might only get to do one dish from each. I already have Jamie and Thomasina is on order at the library.

I quite like 30 minute meals but really make the whole thing. Dishes we have regularly are the Satay Chicken and the Jools pasta. Can't wait to try Thomasina , I've been meaning to get it for ages.

snoworneahva Mon 27-May-13 21:05:41

Really excited about Thomasina's Mexican book - have made the great Mexican breakfast - a lot! Dh and I love it! I am currently falling head over heels in love with all things smoked, so I've ear marked loads of pages already. Waitrose have brilliant chipotles, will stop by the Mexican stall at Borough Market later in the week to pick up supplies. Love Wahaca too, their tequila mojitos are genius, I note she has yet to share the recipe!!

ScienceRocks Tue 28-May-13 08:46:06

Another huge fan of Thomasina miers here (in fact, I have a signed copy of her second book that DH queued to get me, and she has tweeted me several times). In fact I am going to struggle to find new things to cook from the book, because I have made so many things. I will it down with the book later and put a list on here in case anyone wants inspiration. I have also had success with freezing some recipes, so I will add that information.

I am very admiring of tiger's dedication to making chipotles en adobe. However, I am lazier and have a jar of chipotle paste in the cupboard, which transforms Mexican Made Easy from a weekend to weekday book for me. I also don't use the wide variety of chillies that she uses

I will be kicking things off by visiting wahaca for breakfast on Thursday. All in interests of research, of course grin Wahaca also very kindly started following me on twitter recently, I think because I make so damn much from the books!

I have made a few things from Jamie's 30 minute meals (and it was his birthday recently, wasn't it?) so will also list those. I have really liked what I have made, but this will give me a much needed push to try some more recipes from that book.

ScienceRocks Tue 28-May-13 14:53:45

Right, 30 Minute Meals:

Pregnant Jools's Pasta - an absolute family favourite in my house. I don't bother with the chicory in the salad.

Killer jerk chicken - another favourite (though for DH and me, I think the kids would find it too spicy). I don't normally bother with the corn, and tend to use borlotti beans for the rice and peas as I halve the recipe and don't want half a tin of black beans left over. The salad and yogurt really make this dish, so I'd advise keeping them in.

Smoky haddock corn chowder is wonderful (and easily lives up to the 30 minute boast). I can't eat shellfish that is cooked shell on, so don't do the spiced prawns, and it is fine without (though I suspect better with).

The tapas feast is more or less a construction job, but I love the tortilla and the chorizo (which needs watching carefully, otherwise it can burn).

I thought I had cooked a lot more than this, but apparently not!

Over the next week or so, I am planning to make the oozy risotto, tasty crusted cod and Swedish style fishcakes. Quite a few other things appeal too.

ScienceRocks Tue 28-May-13 15:17:58

Mexican Food Made Easy:

Fresh tomato salsa - lovely. If you are serving it straightaway, it's fine to not remove the insides of the tomatoes.

Sweetcorn and black bean salsa - lovely and fresh. I used tinned sweetcorn and it was fine.

Roast tomato sauce - I sometimes blacken the veg in a very hot oven or under the grill rather than using a frying pan, and if I don't have fresh chillis I put a dollop of ready chopped hot chillis (the type that comes in a jar) on top of each tomato. I don't peel the tomatoes before blitzing. This sauce is necessary for several recipes in the book so I usually do a huge quantity and then freeze it in small batches for use at a later date.

Smoky tomato sauce - very good. I use chipotle paste. Again, this freezes well so it's worth making a large quantity.

Classic guacamole - amazing. I love this.

Green rice - lovely. I make steamed rice in my usual way, and do the "green" bit separately (often using defrosted frozen spinach, or on occasion finely shredded green cabbage), then stir them together just before serving. I have done it the way the book says as well and can't tell the difference other than doing it separately feels like less hassle!

Black bean sopa Azteca - excellent! I use tortilla chips to garnish rather than frying tortilla wraps, and have been known to use Cheshire or Lancashire (or similar) cheese instead of feta, and natural yogurt instead of sour cream.

Sweet and spicy squash and chickpea soup - really quick to make and very good. I drizzle with ready done chilli oil blush

Tortilla soup - one of my favourite recipes in the book. I have made it when people come over for dinner and any issues they have with being served soup as a main course quickly go. This is very filling! Again, tortilla chips, yogurt and any crumbly cheese work as garnishes. Any surplus soup (ungarnished) freezes very well.

Panfried mackerel with sweet sour salad - I wasn't feeling very positive about this when I made it but it was surprisingly good!

Spring tacos with mushrooms - good and quick!

Summer tacos with courgette and corn - lovely (and quick).

Winter tacos with creamy greens - I didn't like how these looked, but they tasted good.

Spicy bird tacos - excellent. I bake chicken thighs covered with foil for 20minutes at 180C then chop finely if I don't have leftover roast chicken, or prawns or fish work well too. The sauce can be frozen without the protein added. I use chipotle paste <lazy>.

Smoked mackerel tostadas - lovely and fresh, even without the shallots (I don't like deep frying).

Queso fundido - fantastic. Needs salad!

Meatballs de Mehico - this is the only thing in this book that hasn't worked for me. I used cooked rice (though when I asked TM on Twitter she said to use raw - my BIL did this and it didn't cook). Having said that, I made double the quantity and froze most of them uncooked and they barbecued really well at a later date.

An easy, speedy chilli con carne - I wasn't very keen on this and found it too dense and filling. My DH loved it though. It takes a while so you need to get ahead with cooking it. Freezes well.

One pot bacon, beans and pumpkin - I liked this very much with green rice.

Grilled polenta with mushrooms and greens - I love this. Really quick and tasty.

Chicken and corn humble pie - excellent. You need the roast tomato sauce, but if you have it in the freezer it is quite quick to do. Again, I use chicken thighs (prepared as for spicy bird tacos) and have had success with the topping when I accidentally picked up a tin of creamed corn from the supermarket instead of normal corn.

Spinach and ricotta enchiladas - more roast tomato sauce needed, but this is an excellent dish. I don't like raisins so use dried apricots.

Chilli chocolate truffles - very good. Be brave with the chilli, especially if you plan to freeze some.

Vanilla cheesecake with pineapple caramel - good!

Salted caramel and nut pancakes - very good, but don't put ice cream near the caramel sauce otherwise it goes solid!

If anyone is still reading, thank you!

No, thank you science! Given me ideas before I have the bookgrin

VivaLeBeaver Tue 28-May-13 19:47:07

I don't like Jamie Oliver much so not planning on doing any of his recipes. I've ordered Thomasina Miers book from the library but someone is in the queue infront of me so don't think I'll get it. I'm looking up free recipes off the Internet though!

I've got Veg Every Day and have just ordered the Curry Bible from the library so should be fine for July!

I'll try a couple of JO's - although iirc the book hasn't got a great many veggie recipes in it. Can't find many TM recipes online.

This is the sort of thing we like and eat anyway, so could do that. Scuse Daily Flail link.

ScienceRocks Tue 28-May-13 20:05:42

Remus, I've given the exact recipe names from the book so if you fancy any of them, they may well come up on google (might need to combine with tm's name or wahaca). There was a TV series to accompany the book that aired on channel 5 so there may be some recipes on the TV channel's site. If anything particularly appeals, I am happy to PM you or put it on the the thread. There's loads of veggie recipes in there (in fact, I often cook from it and the other TM book when my vegan friends come over for dinner as it seems to be second only to Indian cuisine in terms of being vegan friendly).

I don't have either of the July books but will see if I can get them from the library when I next go.

Pantah630 Tue 28-May-13 20:50:50

Signing in. science that list is fab, thank you. We're not keen on hot in this house, do I need to dial down the chillies or should I stick to the chilli less recipes?
I like JO an have a few of his books but ave hardly cooked any of his recipes but I have made the Moroccan Lamb, using neck rather than a rack, it is delicious.

ScienceRocks Tue 28-May-13 21:04:39

I'm not great with chilli either Pantah, so I just add less than she says. I think to do without altogether would be to lose some of the essence of the dish, but I simply wouldn't be able to cope with her level of spiciness shock

Thanks Science - have found a couple by googling your recipe names.

Cantdothisagain Tue 28-May-13 22:15:54

I've got both these books, though haven't cooked loads from either for one reason or another.

Jamie- I have made pregnant Jools pasta lots of times; it's easy and good for such little effort. I tried the cauliflower macaroni but wasn't mad on it- I prefer another macaroni recipe of Jamie's that includes butternut squash - it's creamier somehow. I liked the crusty cod. Loved the sea bass, pancetta and sweet potato mash with Asian greens and the rib eye stirfry with dan dan noodles. From the tapas menu I have only tried the manchego stuffed peppers but they were v nice.

I may have tried other dishes and forgotten them...

I've just realised that its Wahaca I've been cooking from, not mexican food made simple. So it's all new for me ( do have the book though). Exciting! Anyone else up for making their own corn tortillas?

Nolda Thu 30-May-13 10:21:58

I already have the JO book but have only cooked one thing from it which was the cauliflower macaroni. Like Cant I was disappointed and it discouraged me from trying anything else. Hopefully, this thread will re-enthuse me.

I have bought the TM book as DH and I are fond of Mexican food but haven't cooked much before. Looks exciting. Where did you buy the chipotle paste from Science?

Cant does one need a press to make tortillas yourself, do you think?

From jo I have cooked the chicken pie with French style peas- which is a family staple, easy, and delicious, though I rarely use as much chicken as suggested and add a leek.

jools pasta- this was nice, but it didn't wow me the way it has others, I haven't made it twice.
The satay chicken- delicious, my husband adores this, although it's too spicy for my children.

The macaroni cheese- not for me. It wasn't horrible, but there are far better Mac and cheeses out there.

Summer lasagne- I loved this, but my family were split. Dh thinks it's too lumpy and the sauce too thick. I like a thick sauce and adore broad beans so it was perfect for me not light though.

The Swedish fishcakes- expensive, and IMO not worth it Waste of a good tuna steak to make a fishcake.

ScienceRocks Thu 30-May-13 13:58:49

The chipotle paste is from ocado. I think waitrose stocks it too.

Just been to wahaca for breakfast and stocked up on chillies for June's mexfest. Oh, and wahaca has retweeted my tweet about the cookbook club smile

snoworneahva Thu 30-May-13 17:21:15

I made chipotle paste last week, froze in small portions, it's fabulous with mayo as a side with meat or as a marinade.

Just been to Borough Market and stocked up on loads of dried chillis and found Chipotle in Adobe Sauce - it's mentioned everywhere. I will make my own when I run out of the chilli paste in the freezer.

I also bough some liquid smoke - no idea how I'm going to use it, BBQ sauce maybe?

Waitrose sell chipotle paste and so do some branches of Sainsbo's. I get through jars full of the stuff. Can check the brand later if anybodywants to know.

What does one eat for breakfast in Wahaca btw?

snoworneahva Thu 30-May-13 17:33:01

Sainsburys chipotle paste is lovely but it's very sweet. I haven't seen any in Waitrose though...apart from dried chipotles and pickled chipotles.

snoworneahva Thu 30-May-13 17:36:21

Just had a look Waitrose sells Discovery Chipotle paste which is mostly chipotle, whereas sainsburys is mostly water and sugar. Thanks remus

Discovery - that's the one! I love it. smile

ScienceRocks Thu 30-May-13 17:57:19

Remus, breakfast at wahaca involved a breakfast burrito. It was filled with frijoles, feta, spinach, avocado and other lovely things. I had mine with chipotle sauce grin

You can also get Mexican scrambled eggs, torta (a bap with Mexican filling), doughnuts, banana bread, ranchos hueveros (not sure of the spelling, sorry). The branch I went to (Charlotte street) also has a takeaway bit for lunch that sells a few bits and pieces so I got some dried chile de arbol etc as I haven't been able to get them elsewhere. Not sure the other branches do breakfast. Not sure why.

I should be on commission, I love it there!

Pantah630 Thu 30-May-13 19:48:24

Am planning to ride up to London tomorrow to go to BM, is there a Wahaca nearby? I need to try some Mexican food to make sure it tastes correct nothing to do with description of breakfast burrito above honest

Pantah630 Thu 30-May-13 20:19:48

It looks like Charlotte St is only a brisk walk away, breakfast sorted grin

Thanks Science - have never been to Charlotte Street but keep hearing good things about it.

maniacbug Thu 30-May-13 23:34:00

Evening all, I sat down with the TM book and some post-its earlier, intending to make a list of recipes to try - but soon realised that I was writing down every single one! I don't even know where to start, so Science your list is a very welcome nudge in the right direction.
I eat some form of chilli sauce with most meals as it is, so am keen to try the hotter dishes and determined to try and source at least some of the range of specific chillis mentioned. Am most envious of everyone within travelling distance of a Wahaca. Wonder whether she'd consider opening one in the south west??

JO... I was keen when I first picked this up from the library, because I'd expected it to be more basic and was pleasantly surprised. I still like the look of a number of the dishes but am struggling to get my head round the way the instructions are listed in order of timing for the whole meal. I can see it would be v. efficient if you were doing the sides/drinks/whatever that he recommends, but what if you want to pick and choose from different meals? Not sure my patience is up to filtering out the relevant bits! Going to give it a go, but DH and DS1 seemed more keen on this one so I might end up handing it over to them.
For now, though, my best friend was recently raving about his method for banana ice cream (in the Meatball Sandwich menu), so I think I'm going to start with that.

ComradeJing Fri 31-May-13 13:39:58


How did I not know this was a mn thing now?? Bloody self imposed mn ban.

Joining thread. Will be back to report smile

greensnail Fri 31-May-13 14:25:12

Signing in for June. I'm all set to make the rainbow trout with chilli cream tomorrow, really looking forward to it.

Ooh, I have to say the Tuscan salad in the JO book (it's a side to the summer veg lasagne) is absolutely GORGEOUS, I really recommend that. Not impressed with his curries, - I haven't tried making them, but I just thought using pataks paste was not revolutionary or recipe worthy. If you like your curries, the Hairy Bikers Great Curries book is fantastic. (are we allowed to mention non listed books??!)

Jamie's from scratch curry in Happy Days is the one I use when I want a 'proper recipe' curry, but must admit that for mid-week coking, I sometimes use a paste (work full time and can't always ba to do it all in the evenings!).

ohforfoxsake Fri 31-May-13 17:43:11

I miss Wahaca since moving North sad

But I have both these books and have only made TMs chill con carne so thanks for the inspiration, am going to have a crack at being a little more adventurous!

Oh I use the pastes too Remus, and very acceptable they are too. I just thought it was a bit naff in a recipe book.

His tomato soup is also very nice.

Pantah630 Fri 31-May-13 18:33:11

We made it to Wahaca for lunch, never been before, it was lovely. We had a selection of street food and bought some chillies and herbs for this month. DS2 wants me to make the steak burritos and I'm hopeful there is a pork publl taco recipe as they were delicious. When I've stopped vibrating (feet, hands and ears - this bike isn't the most comfy) will sit down and pick out some recipes. smile

glorious Fri 31-May-13 18:48:46

Mmm I'm excited about Mexican! My copy of JO has just arrived at the library so will get cracking soon.

ZuleikaJambiere Fri 31-May-13 19:48:07

Signing in for June, hello!

I'm waiting for TM but have already picked up JO from the library - are we cooking against the clock to test his 30 minutes claims? I have a feeling I'll be nowhere near! I'm looking forward to this book, as I lack pudding inspiration and wish I had a few quick and easy recipes up my sleeve to round of weekend meals with something better than yogurt (not that my waistline needs them), so I'm hoping this month will teach me something here

greensnail Fri 31-May-13 20:12:04

I sat down to flick through the JO book for the first time this afternoon and I was really impressed. I'm not sure what I was expecting but wasn't feeling too enthusiastic about it, but actually I found myself wanting to eat almost everything in there!

Am planning to do the Jools pregnant pasta first as I've heard such good things about it. I will time it and see if I can do it in 30 minutes, although I have the 15 minute meals book and they seem to take me about 30 minutes usually.

ScienceRocks Fri 31-May-13 23:04:13

Just realised I've started early! Made jamie Oliver's fish cakes this evening, which were very nice. Even got it all done in half an hour! I did tweak the recipe slightly by boiling the potatoes instead of microwaving them, and using rocket instead of alfalfa sprouts for the salad.

Pufflemum Sat 01-Jun-13 09:44:21

Hi everyone, I've just ordered the TM book and love this thread to get me started. I already have JO and can highly recommend the cod with mushy peas, this is a favourite for my family and friends, even my DH who is not keen on fish really likes it. The peri peri chicken is also very nice.

Cantdothisagain Sat 01-Jun-13 14:41:23

I don't think I can justify a tortilla press to add to my languishing kitchen equipment drawer.... But am excited about the book. That trout with chilli cream looks fab- do report back!

Cantdothisagain Sat 01-Jun-13 22:41:01

Well I made a start with the classic guacamole from TM tonight. Really liked it. Tbh it's very similar to the one I usually make, but has red onion not spring onion in, and has at its base s sort of paste made from chilli, salt and red onion. Really enjoyed it and will make again.

Taking the book to bed for inspiration for what to try next!

Kneedeepindaisies Sat 01-Jun-13 22:41:34

Read through my TM book today. The recipes look good but where are all the pictures? <sob>

Feathered Sun 02-Jun-13 11:02:32

Hello, I'd like to join you, please!
I have three children. A seven year old and (nearly) five year old twins. My husband is a bit of a food snob as is my seven year old, my twins are the world's fussiest eaters and would happily live on mr Kipling cakes and beans. I grew up a vegetarian but have succumbed to meat due to mr food snob being a rampant carnivore.
As a result I am fairly obsessed with what to cook and often buy cookbooks in desperation thinking "This is the one! This is the one that will make everyone happy." I have a good collection but many are sadly unused, so I'm delighted to pull Jamie Oliver off the shelf to start off with and I've ordered The Thomasina one.
Looking forward to this month!

Feathered Sun 02-Jun-13 11:04:30

Oh . . . forgot to mention, my husband is coeliac so no gluten, and one of my twins has a dairy intolerance. Just want you to get the picture of my daily struggle!

akarucker Sun 02-Jun-13 12:21:50

I've just bookmarked the recipes that caught my eye from JO. I think my June menu will include:

Pregnant Jools' pasta
tomato soup & croutons
tray baked chicken
killer jerk chicken, rice & beans
chicken skewers with satay sauce & fiery noodle salad
1 minute berry ice cream (and if that works, a number of other possibilities to get goodness into my kids)
Steak sarnie & crispy new potatoes

These seem like some good weeknight meals. Will report back as and when made. Not terribly exciting, but after Jerusalem, I could do with some uneventful basic meals.

glorious Sun 02-Jun-13 14:02:29

Welcome feathered, that sounds tricky!

I reckon I'll do the oreciette with broccoli and the jerk chicken from JO. Full meals on both because racing the clock sounds fun (and I'm horribly competitive grin ).

kefybaby Sun 02-Jun-13 19:18:39

Signing in for June too. Hello, everyone.
JO has been sitting on my shelves largely unused (apart from the sausage rolls which I have made a few times and are good), so it is great to have an incentive to make use of it.
Given the raving reviews, I made the pregnant Jools pasta tonight. DH asked if this was a student recipe, my blender has suffered a blow and the jury is still out as to whether we will revisit the recipe. It was enjoyable enough but not amazing. Perhaps Jerusalem has spoilt us!

Cantdothisagain Sun 02-Jun-13 20:01:44

I agree the pregnant pasta recipe is student-fare in a way but it's tasty cheap and quick... Rather than revolutionary...

greensnail Sun 02-Jun-13 20:03:00

Haven't managed to do the trout yet as dh went out on Saturday and I didn't think it was worth cooking it just for me and the dds. Hopefully will make it tomorrow so will report back then!

maniacbug Sun 02-Jun-13 21:07:29

If he'd called it anything other than 'pregnant Jools' pasta, I think I'd be more tempted to try it!

DH made the fish tray-bake menu on Saturday, getting monumentally stressed in the process as he can't resist a challenge and was actually trying to do it in 30 mins. Result: not bad, but closer to 1hr. Fish was absolutely delicious, and the salsa verde really made it (we had leftovers today on fish + chips), but the banoffee pie was horrible. Mind you, I still managed to eat a portion... (If you like banoffee pie, the Hairy Bikers one from their pie book is amazing.) Oh, and we thought the salad really didn't need balsamic vinegar, as there are so many other strong flavours going on.

Got a bit carried away on (thanks for tip tigerlily) and ordered 1kg of chipotle chillis. So, guess I'll be making chipotles in adobo at some point this week! And probably giving jars of it away. What on earth was I thinking?!

snoworneahva Mon 03-Jun-13 10:19:36

Just done my weekly plan - this week we're going to try Sopa de Lima from Tommy's book and the mustard chicken from Jamie's book. We'll be adapting the recipes to suit our diet -so instead of using potatoes in the dauphinoise we'll be using turnips and avoiding the tortillas in Tommy's soup.

What's everyone else got planned?

I am making the roast tomato sauce, to go in the corn and chicken humble pie, which I'm hoping isn't too spicy for DC.
I've also planned the fish tray bake with spinach salad, but will go without the banoffeee pie (it's not my kind of desert and earlier reviews put me off) but will substitute the mango mini ice creams.

Unrelated to the cookbooks, but I have to cook a pork shoulder this week as my new freezer is smaller than my old so will have to defrost some meat. Any ideas what I can do with it?

BeCool Mon 03-Jun-13 15:07:26

Very interested in this thread but I need to find a way to do this without buying new cookbooks (I am also part of the minimalist quiche), of going to the library.

I have JO's 15 minute meals - will it work to cook something from that instead?

Cherrypi Mon 03-Jun-13 15:24:56

Hi all. Just picked up both books from the library and going to have a look through when/if the toddler naps. wink

Nolda Mon 03-Jun-13 16:59:03

Just about to start the pork chops, crushed potatoes and minty cabbage. Back later!

ScienceRocks Mon 03-Jun-13 18:04:11

BeCool, we might be doing 15 minute meals another month. A lot of the 30 minute meals are online, as are the Mexican recipes.

The pork shoulder could be slow roasted and served with mole smile

ScienceRocks Mon 03-Jun-13 18:04:58

Chicken enchiladas here tonight. I have done the spinach and ricotta ones before, but I have leftover chicken from yesterday's roast so am adapting the recipe to suit.

Feathered Mon 03-Jun-13 19:01:50

Still waiting for my TM book to be delivered.
The thing that confuses me about the JO book is that there are no timings. What do you do if you are cooking only elements of a certain menu? Or if a small voice shouts "MUMMY . . . COME AND WIPE MY BOTTOM!" when you're half way into the half hour????

Nolda Mon 03-Jun-13 20:39:55

The pork chops were very tasty. I liked the fennel seeds and honey. I have to confess to making the basic error of not reading the recipe through before shopping and cooking. The chops I bought didn't have the skin because I thought that crackling isn't good for you so just skip that bit. Also microwaving of the potatoes took me by surprise but seemed to work although I would suggest stirring them halfway through.

The DCs were not overly impressed. DD said the meat was tasty but the potatoes and cabbage were a bit yucky. DS liked the meat and the cabbage shock but not the potatoes. DD loved the pud but DS managed a one spoon taste (which he spat out).

I liked it all and found the flavours worked very well together even the mint sauce on the cabbage (and I'm not usually a mint fan). Still waiting for DH to come home from spinning for his verdict. So far, I'd say I would probably cook the meat again but with different accompaniments given the DC's comments. Pudding was nice but we usually have fruit or a yoghurt.

maniacbug Mon 03-Jun-13 20:42:00

Exactly, feathered, that's what's bothering me too. (Plus the fact that I don't like being told what to eat with what - it makes me deliberately want to break the rules!) I'm really struggling with the format. If we really like any particular dishes I think I'm going to write the recipes out for those dishes and then take the book back to the library.

pregnantpause re. fish tray-bake: 10 mins under the grill was not enough for our salmon to cook, though the pancetta burned. We did have the thick salmon steaks though; might have been different with tail-end fillets. Think if we try this again I would roast rather than grill and allow for 15 (even 20) mins rather than 10. Or if grilling, I might add the pancetta once the salmon's already half-cooked.

Nolda Mon 03-Jun-13 20:42:45

grin at "Mummy ... come and wipe my bottom", Feathered.

frenchfancy Mon 03-Jun-13 21:10:39

I made tortillas today, didn't use the recipe from the book as I don't have it yet. Just wanted to let you know you don't need a press. I used a rolling pin and they came out great. The first couple were a fail as I rolled them too thin but the rest were good.

I have a couple left over so I'm going to do the chorizo and potato Quesdillas. ( recipe here for anyone else who doesn't have the book ) .

It might be pregnant Jools pasta for dinner tomorrow, but it doesn't count as we have that quite regularly. I agree it isn't the best thing every, but it is quick, cheap, and the plates are always empty at the end which is a BIG plus.

Nolda Mon 03-Jun-13 21:46:58

Oh dear, DH has now eaten his meal and said, "Which book does this come from? Please don't make anything else"!

snoworneahva Mon 03-Jun-13 22:14:24

Made the Sopa de Lima this evening. Quite sour flavour as you add zest and juice of a grapefruit. Mixed reactions from the family, dh scored it a 9, - thought it was tasty and interesting, ds and I scored it a 7, we both liked the unusual interesting taste but it wouldn't be something we'd want again in a hurry and dd thought it was much too sour and drained all the soup off and just ate the chicken and avocado.

So worth a try but it has not made it into the family hall of fame recipes.

Cherrypi Tue 04-Jun-13 17:49:21

Just cooked the Mexican scrambled eggs with chorizo. I liked the flavours but the texture was a bit odd. I did blitz my onions to a pulp though. Went well with the salad and tequila, chilli and lime dressing I bought from Asda. smile

ELR Tue 04-Jun-13 18:33:18

Hi everyone just marking my place, just got back from a week away so will be having another lookthrough the books when ive got through the mountain of washing and cooking something on Thursday.
aka the steak sandwich in JO is lovely, do all the side dishes and its a real great weekend lunch.
Think I will try the killer jerk chicken.

akarucker Tue 04-Jun-13 19:30:00

ELR oh good, I'll make the steak sarnie soon then.

Made the tomato soup and croutons tonight. It was very good and nice and easy. Will make again. I used focaccia for the croutons which worked beautifully.

greensnail Tue 04-Jun-13 21:46:10

Finally made the trout with chilli cream from TM this evening. It was really yummy, dh and I both enjoyed it. The dds didn't like the chilli cream (it wasn't due to the chilli, they just didn't like it) but that wasn't a problem as it gets poured over the fish after cooking so easy enough for them to have their fish plain without it. They ate lots of fish that way so kept me happy! Will definitely definitely be making it again.

Will be doing pregnant jools pasta tomorrow. Hope it will be easy enough to work out the timings as I won't be doing the pudding to go with it and an also prone to having little bottoms to wipe mid cooking grin

ScienceRocks Tue 04-Jun-13 21:46:58

Made the tasty crusted cod from 30 minute meals tonight. The tin of anchovies in my cupboard turned out to be out of date sardines so I substituted olives instead. I also didn't have lemons, so used lemon juice. Still, the fish was tasty, as were the mashy peas. And the tartare sauce was chunkier than in the recipe (I had already put the food processor in the dishwasher and switched it on, so had to chop it by hand) but added a good tang.

All in all a success (even if the fish under the grill smoked out the kitchen).

kefybaby Tue 04-Jun-13 22:22:19

I made the meatballs from the JO meatball sandwich (with steamed veg instead of the bacon, cheese, bread and cabbage as I came across criticism that the sandwich contains more fat than a Big Mac!). DH and I were not very impressed with the result - perhaps they need to be eaten "in context". I am beginning to think that the focus of this book is on making as much as possible in 30 minutes...

Pufflemum Wed 05-Jun-13 07:31:49

Well I have received my copy of TO but am struggling to decide what to make. I try and follow a Paleo diet so don't eat grains,means or bread, which limits the recipes significantly! The green smoothie sounds good and the different salsas so I'll definitely do those and then need to go through the book again and see what I can adapt. The chilli con carne is on the list for next week when DH is home.

I made the spicy bird tacos last night. They were spicy! I loved the sauce, spicy and smoky, but halved it and froze half, as two tablespoon of chipotle paste (substituted for abode) is a lot! I made burritos with it, and I think I can confidently say it will be a go to recipe for leftover chicken! I'm very enthused after making this!

snoworneahva Wed 05-Jun-13 08:37:21

puffle I'm Paleo too - maybe a bit primal....I have lots of things ear marked as suitable with a small amount of adapting.

Shortlisted to Coconut ceviche, chilled avocado soup, minty courgette soup, hot chorizo salad - without the beans, chicken & chorizo in an almond mole, tamarind and chilli infused belly of pork.

ScienceRocks Wed 05-Jun-13 09:28:57

Pregnant, I definitely dial down the chilli for most of the recipes. I literally can't take the heat!

ScienceRocks Wed 05-Jun-13 09:29:27

Sorry for being dense, but what is a paleo or primal diet?

ELR Wed 05-Jun-13 13:10:36

Science think it is when you only eat food that is caught or grown. So fish, veg, grains.

Pufflemum Wed 05-Jun-13 13:20:44

You also eat meat on Paleo, another name for it is the primal diet. It's basically low carb with limited grains and dairy. I've been doing it 6 weeks and it's reduced my body fat from 28% to 22% and I've lost 5lbs ( which was my aim). It's very easy usually, but clearly not so compatible with a mexicanway of eating. Especially combined with my dislike of chorizo!

Pantah630 Wed 05-Jun-13 18:17:11

I have beans cooking, to make the refried beans and steak marinating for the burritos. Beans take a while to cook so the steak gets extra marinating time.

ScienceRocks Wed 05-Jun-13 18:52:32

Thanks Puffle. Sounds interesting (though I could never do it as I love my carbs).

I made the oozy mushroom risotto with spinach salad this evening. I wasn't convinced the DDs would go for it, particularly as the salad was dressed, but they loved it! Clean plates all round. It's being added to the family dinner repertoire smile

I am planning to do the TM beans next week. Maybe I should start now?! What cut of beef are you using for the steak burritos?

I did the Jo fish tray bake. It was hit and miss with the family, but that's expected as they all dislike fish. I thought the salsa verde was delicious as was the salmon with asparagus, but, taking other reviews into account, I baked the fish, adding the accompaniments after 10 mins. This worked perfectly, in about 35 mins. The salad too was a hit, very much ebjoyed by dh, but I chose to halve the balsamic and it was tangy but but not overpowering. The potatoes are potatoes. Lovely at this time of year.

I didn't do a desert, as time was of the essence and I was scrambling a bit to get it done in 40 minutes, but this could be due to my kitchen being a dumping ground atm, and nothing being ready. I always smirk at the first instruction- get your equipment ready and ingredients prepared. This step is clearly not taken into any timings given, but in reality takes 10 minutes before you start (and even then I don't have every thing ready, I'm still left with a full processor screeching cornichons? where are the bloody cornichons? Wasting a vital few minutes in which I should have processed and finished the whole step and moved on to the oven!)

ScienceRocks Wed 05-Jun-13 19:46:09

I'm doing the fish tray bake later this week so will bear these comments in mind!

Unsurprisingly, the risotto didn't cook in 30 minutes. If it had, it would have been the first risotto I have ever made that cooked in that time. I reckon it was an hour, end to end, but most of that was adding stock and giving it the odd stir. Probably only the first 20 minutes were busy, but then I didn't do the pudding.

Need to give some thanks to tigerlily for starting this cook book club. It is definitely motivating me to plan from the two cookbooks and shop accordingly, making lots of lovely discoveries along the way smile

I second the thank you to tiger, I haven't been as motivated to cook or enjoyed my cookbooks as much for a long time. Thanks tigergrin

maniacbug Wed 05-Jun-13 20:55:36

Ah yes, pregnant, indeed! And not only that, but the clearing up time. Our kitchen was total carnage after DH did the tray bake meal. In his time-pressure panic he must have used every single implement, every single utensil and every single surface. Not the first time, mind. Maybe it's just DH? hmm
Think I would rather take my time and clear up as I go.

My chipotles arrived yesterday, and I can confirm that 1kg = a shedload of chillis. Am making two double batches of chipotles in adobo (one blended, one not), to use and give away, but still have 200g of the actual chillis left over. If anyone can give them a good home, let me know! I think I have enough to last me for the rest of my lifetime. Planning to start making inroads with peanut mole, tamarind + chilli-infused pork belly and chicken adobado at some point in the next week.

Made the banana ice cream from JO for kids + friends tonight (using Greek yoghurt + without coconut or biscuits) and it was a big hit, even though our freezer's a bit rubbish so it the banana chunks weren't properly frozen and it was more like a smoothie. They had it with grated chocolate and strawberries and all asked for seconds. Our default pudding option is 'fruit or yoghurt', so it was nice to be able to offer both in the form of a treat. He uses the same technique for the mango dessert and the berry ice cream, and I have a feeling we might adopt it.

thanks from me too, tigerlily, I am really enjoying exploring individual books in depth, rather than just haphazardly browsing. I have been banging on about Jerusalem to anyone who'll listen. Not sure why, but it has never occurred to me to borrow cookbooks from the library before. Will be doing this a lot more in the future rather than wantonly adding yet another book to my collection unless I'm sure I'm going to use it.

Pantah630 Wed 05-Jun-13 21:11:55

Yum, yum, burritos were lovely but very time consuming doing it all at once. I put the beans to soak this morning so they only took an hour to cook plus the extra 15mins after salt was added, then you have to do the refried bit, another 20 odd mins. The steak cooks in minutes, I used leg of mutton cut steak, ask your butcher, it's melt in the mouth tender after marinating for an hour and a half. My butcher rarely gets skirt as it very expensive as you only get a little amount on each beef carcass. The LMC was a fiver for 600g, 3 good sized steaks. Was a better steak than rump in my humble opinion.
Also made the roast chipotle salsa, halving the one chipotle smile and lots of lime. Forgot to add creme fraiche or rice when assembling but it wasn't missing anything iykwim, DS2 loved them, we had two each and couldn't eat another thing. They're messy and drippy but that adds to the fun. Unfortunately DH at the farm tonight so he has the steak an beans but not in a burrito to heat up with some chips when he gets in much later.
Third or fourthing flowers to tiger it was/is a fab idea, I'm having a ball cooking lots of new foods grin

glorious Wed 05-Jun-13 21:21:19

Ooh bug I'd love some chillies, I could send you what they're worth plus postage?

I did the jerk chicken meal tonight. Despite my best efforts it took more like 45mins (the shame blush ). But I hate a messy kitchen so no bombsite involved.

It was really good, better than I expected, though I think it would be even better if the chicken was marinated and barbecued.

The thing I found a bit annoying is that there are no timings so you're on your own if you get behind. Obviously it's not hard to guess when you might check the corn or whatever but I think it would be helpful. Also I wish there was a list of equipment at the beginning.

On another note I made my first thing from Short and Sweet today, which someone on here suggested. Butterscotch banana cake. Mmmmmmm! Thanks whoever it was (*pantah?*).

And I agree, thanks *tigerlily *thanks We always do two new recipes a week anyway but this has got me trying things I wouldn't have like my first Jamie. And it's all been great.

snoworneahva Wed 05-Jun-13 21:52:51

Made JO mustard chicken - took me longer than 30mins as i cant bring myself to buy chicken breasts and ended up chopping up a whole chicken. I kept the sauce separate from the chicken as dd is not keen on cream, so the chicken was just coated in mustard, rosemary and oil - it was very tender and juicy - went down well with all. The sauce was lovely too. I made spring greens and dressed them with lemon juice and olive oil - mixed response from kids but I thought it was a very tasty change from butter. And finally I didn't do the dauphinois, as I eat Paleo - I had hoped to swap the potatoes for turnip but failed in my quest to find any. So served it with roasted Butternut squash, cauliflower and Jersey Royals.

Will definitely be making this again. Also would like to thank Tigerlily we always try out a few new things a week too but the kids seem more into it because it's a club thing so it's having a really positive impact.

ZuleikaJambiere Wed 05-Jun-13 22:09:33

I've planned my first JO meal, I'm going to do the summer veg lasagne, Tuscan tomato salad and quick mango frozen yogurt at the weekend. I've chosen a meal as I want to time myself and see how close I get to 30 minutes, or not.

Having read through the book several times now I agree with the person who said it all seems like cooking as much as possible in 30 minutes. Rice pudding seems a very odd dessert to have with duck salad, and if you've only got 30 minutes why on earth would you make your own butter, and how many different chicory salad recipes do you need? I also don't agree with his claims that it fits with family life and saves money - many of the meals would need me to spend a lot on ingredients, and with 4-5pm being the witching hour for my tired and hungry DDs there's no way I could ignore them for 30 minutes while I rustle up tea, maybe if you have older DCs who can entertain themselves or are cooking for adults after work, but we only get a cooked from scratch meal if I can prepare it earlier in the day, at nap time.

Unfortunately I'm at least second on the waiting list for TM at the library, so may have to make do with online recipes again this month (I'm still waiting for Jerusalem). Given that guacamole is one of my favourite things to eat, ever, I'm going to start with that. Is this the right recipe from the book?

Another thanks for tigerlily, for all of these reasons given by others. Thank you

greensnail Wed 05-Jun-13 22:13:10

We had the jools pregnant pasta this evening. Not a huge success with my family. Dh and I thought it was ok but the girls refused to eat the sauce and just picked out plain pasta to eat.

On the plus side I managed it in under 30 minutes despite numerous interruptions and without turning the kitchen into a complete bombsite. I've cooked from the 15 minute meals before and always manage to trash the kitchen with them so I was expecting the worst. I think the small amounts of decluttering I've managed recently have helped with that.

Am fasting tomorrow, then will be doing the mustard chicken on friday smile

maniacbug Wed 05-Jun-13 22:17:50

glorious don't worry about reimbursing - as I bulk-ordered, the 800g I'm using cost less than they would have done if I'd ordered in a smaller quantity. Just happy to know they're going to be used. I have to go to the PO tomorrow anyway, so PM me your address and I'll send them on.
I'm another one who hates a messy kitchen, by the way. I could feel myself getting twitchy while DH was in action and had to go outside and take some deep breaths. He hates it when I interfere try to help.

snow we got turnips in our veg box today and I had been wondering what to do with them, so thanks for dauphinoise suggestion!

greensnail I'm fasting tomorrow too. Weirdly, I have found that I quite enjoy reading through this thread and menu planning on fast days.

Just wondering, could we possibly consider a baking book for August, or maybe later in the year?

Zul- the lasagne easily feeds 6 IMO and doesn't reheat well. If I were making it for two adults and two toddlers again I would halve it. If the adults were greedy. I really liked it though.

I agree about the chicory, I wonder if he has shares in the chicory market he pushes it so much (and chicory is never sold in cheaper supermarkets) I am ashamed to admit that I often just use a pre washed pre bagged chicory salad as that's what I have access to. I dress it myself of coursewink

maniacbug Wed 05-Jun-13 22:25:29

Flaming Nora, I have just tasted my chipotles in adobo and even for a chilli addict like me, it is HOT. Amazingly delicious, though. Blows Discovery chipotle paste (of which I am a big fan) right out of the water!

maniacbug Wed 05-Jun-13 22:30:29

Ow. My lips are still hurting.

glorious Thu 06-Jun-13 07:11:06

Wow thanks bug , you have a PM grin thanks Quite funny picturing you, DH and the kitchen mayhem! I'll be careful not to try too much of the chipotles in adobo then...

Definitely up for some baking in August. And/or one of my favourite books following a trip to China is Fuschia Dunlop's Sichuan Cookery, though her latest book Every Grain of Rice is a bit prettier and the recipes are simpler. Some recipes here: [[]]

glorious Thu 06-Jun-13 08:11:39
snoworneahva Thu 06-Jun-13 09:04:49

I would like a good Chinese cookbook as the book of the's something I'd like to explore a bit more, can't recommend any...but I neeeeeed to buy one. Really!!!

Looks like the perfect weekend to try out some of the BBQ recipes from Mexican made Simple- any recommendations?

Pantah630 Thu 06-Jun-13 09:57:40

I've got Chinese made Simple by Ching-He Huang from the BBC series a couple of years ago. I'm ashamed to say I think I flicked through it once but haven't cooked from it. I expect libraries may have copies as it was a TV series and lots of her recipes are on the BBC site.

maniacbug Thu 06-Jun-13 09:59:16

Aha glorious I knew there was a gap in my collection! My only Chinese cookbook is an ancient Ken Hom one; I'm sure modern Chinese cookery is a lot more exciting and would definitely be up for some experimenting.

snow can't recommend as haven't tried it yet, but we will be doing the chicken adobado on the BBQ this weekend. Is the weather going to stay beautiful? (Daren't check the forecast.)

ScienceRocks Thu 06-Jun-13 10:45:50

The weather forecast for the weekend is good, I think. Well, it was earlier in the week so I don't want to look again smile

I'd love to try some Chinese cooking. A book I can recommend NOT using is the Gok Wan one. I bought it based on some rave reviews on amazon, and my word I was disappointed. I did four things, just in case I had tried a duff recipe, but they were all bland and dull.

Off to the library later so I will try and request the July books and see if they have started stocking Jerusalem after last month's amazing comments.

karmakameleon Thu 06-Jun-13 12:43:14

Hi all, I'm feeling a bit left out because I haven't had any time to cook from this month's books so far.

I'm so disappointed as I was really looking forward to this month's books and so enjoyed the last couple of threads (another big thanks to tigerlily, hope she's enjoying her holiday) but have no time now as I've just gone back to work from maternity leave. Not helped either by DS not settling well at nursery so he's very clingy when he gets me back in the evening so hardly helpful when I'm trying to cook dinner!

So really looking for any ideas on fairly easy and quick meals I can try. I know quick is the whole idea of the Jamie book but call me cynical but I don't quite believe the 30min thing. Anyway it certainly won't take into account a screaming DS clinging onto me for dear life so I may save that for weekends and concentrate on the TM book if anyone has any suggestions.

akarucker Thu 06-Jun-13 13:09:22

karma I agree, JO outright lied about the 30mins! All I could suggest is perhaps getting all the prep work/ equipment out ready the day or night before. I usually find that's quite a chunk of the time. A bit of a hassle, I know, but it may allow you to try a few recipes without resorting to frozen dinners while things are hard for you.

snoworneahva Thu 06-Jun-13 13:15:00

Chinese cookery books haven't really moved beyond Ken Hom in the 70's have they? Have just ordered Simple Chinese Cooking by Kylie Kwong - I remember watching her show in Australia and it all seemed pretty doable.....will report back when the book arrives.

snoworneahva Thu 06-Jun-13 13:20:19

As for the 30 min thing with Jamie Oliver - I don't like speedy cooking, I'd prefer to stroll around the kitchen in a 1970's floor length Kaftan - ok so I don't have a floor length Kaftan but the vibe is the same, a bit chilled. If I only had 30mins, I'd cook something simple, I'd use a slow cooker, I'd have a fry up....I'd even phone for a's just all too rushed, I'd feel like falling onto the sofa with a large drink, rather than sitting down to share to share a meal with my loved ones.

glorious Thu 06-Jun-13 13:54:39

Lots of enthusiasm for Chinese then. If you want to try something I'd recommend the pock-marked mother Chen's beancurd if you like spicy stuff, it's lovely and unctuous and a classic Sichuanese dish. Or the beef with cumin which is a Muslim dish from the north, fragrant and very easy.

glorious Thu 06-Jun-13 13:55:04

From the link below, sorry!

HuevosRancheros Thu 06-Jun-13 16:01:33

maniacbug could I please hijack this thread that I've been lurking on to ask you about your chipotles?

Which ones did you get from Morita or Meco? Any idea what the difference is?

(thanks to all the chat on here I have ordered the Mexican book, and look forward to ordering loads of ingredients!smile)

ELR Thu 06-Jun-13 16:02:50

I have just looked at that book 'Every Grain of Rice' on amazon and it looks very good. Maybe one for the future? Still getting going with this months books I've cooked from both of them loads so trying to find new recipes I want to try is a little hard as not had much time to sit down and flick through so far.
karma the pasta puttanesca from JO is really nice and quite quick to make, the pinch of cinnamon really does make a difference too

ZuleikaJambiere Thu 06-Jun-13 17:41:01

Oooh, I was going to suggest Chinese, and you've all beaten me to it. I have the ChingHe Haung book at home which would love to be used more than it has. What I have done of her recipes are easy and delicious. And I'm up for baking too - August would mean the girls could join in some holiday baking

Thanks for the lasagne tip pregnant, I'll definitely scale down quantities if it doesn't reheat

Trills Thu 06-Jun-13 17:50:45

I just bought Mexican Food Made Easy accidentally without realising that it was your book of the month smile

Trills Thu 06-Jun-13 17:59:01

Despite working in London I have not managed to have lunch at a Wahaca yet - I may have to do something about this

akarucker Fri 07-Jun-13 18:10:38

Second dish made from JO - pregnant pasta! It was surprisingly delicious and will be on my regular easy go-to menu. Went well with a huge salad. That's two for two from this book so far...

ZuleikaJambiere Fri 07-Jun-13 21:25:18

We've just eaten JO's steak sarnie (without any of the accompaniments) and it was A.Ma.Zing! It will definitely become a regular on a Friday night (Friday night tea in this house is a sofa tea after the girls are in bed, so finger food is a must). And having said that his recipes all seem expensive, this is reasonable as one steak fed us both.

I have a question about this weekend's menu, which is the summer veg lasagne. I couldn't get fresh lasagne, so will be using dried. Do I cook them first and then cook the lasagne for the same time as in the book (however long that might be ...), or does it need longer? And if it needs longer, will that ruin the filling? And finally, where do you get fresh lasagne from? I hunted high and low (although I do live in rural Yorkshire)

So I definitely won't get tomorrow nights tea done in 30 minutes with dry pasta. And I've got fresh mango rather than frozen, so pudding will need to be done in advance. 30 minutes is out the window

ScienceRocks Fri 07-Jun-13 21:57:06

Zuleika, I get fresh lasagne sheets from ocado (so waitrose) but thought all supermarkets did it in the fresh pasta section.

Did the fish tray bake from Jamie this evening. I followed the advice upthread and started with the asparagus and other ingredients, then added the fish and prawns later. I also stuck it in the oven rather than under the grill as I was baking a cake at the same time. I love his salsa verde recipe, and have made it many times.

I'd definitely do it again smile

greensnail Fri 07-Jun-13 21:58:46

We've had the mustard chicken this evening. Went down well, although the girls wouldn't eat the potatoes we all enjoyed the chicken. Definitely will make it again. I was going to do the pudding that went with it but managed to miss the second page of my shopping list so was missing a few items for it. I'm finding the timings worked quite well if I tidied the kitchen when I was supposed to be making the pudding. That way I didn't end up with a bomb site by the time I'd finished.

maniacbug Fri 07-Jun-13 22:34:37

Snap, aka, we had the Jools pasta too. Funny to think of all these JO Friday night meals happening across the country! I liked the time-saving technique of blitzing everything in the food processor. Wasn't sure about the balsamic at first, but I simmered the sauce for ages, then left it on the hob and reheated and it seemed to mellow nicely.

Zuleika I hadn't noticed his recipe for home-made butter - you're right, that seems a slightly bonkers thing to do when you're on a time budget! But I am intrigued and am definitely going to try it (on its own, not as part of a recipe). Last time I made butter was about 25 years ago in science at school, with a jam jar.

I was browsing through JO last night looking for more inspiration and must have stared at the Eton mess picture on p.253 for a full minute, in horrified fascination. Eton mess is delicious, and I know the point is that it's all mixed up, but.... well, have a look and you'll see what I mean.

Huevos my chipotles are morita. I didn't know the difference between morita and meco chipotles either, until about 2 minutes ago! Like the user name by the way, very apt. Is that specially for this month?

TuttiFrutti Sat 08-Jun-13 06:55:20

Greensnail, we had the mustard chicken too and loved it! I will definitely make it again. Loved the dauphinois potatoes too. I also made the affogato puddings, which were a big hit ( left the coffee off the dc's version so theirs was just ice cream on cherries with crushed biscuits).

This is such a great thread - have been watching with interest but this has been my first opportunity to join in.

HuevosRancheros Sat 08-Jun-13 08:12:21

Thanks maniacbug, yes I ended up googling it too, as the mexgrocer website didn't offer up much help!

No, I have been HuevosRancheros for a long while, my favourite breakfast! But it's always been my version, looking forward to following Thomasina's recipe to see how she does it smile

I am mostly veggie, DH completely - is there much in the JO book for veggies? Happy to mix and match meals if necessary

snoworneahva Sat 08-Jun-13 09:28:33

Thomasina's huevos rancheros is's my favourite breakfast!

glorious Sat 08-Jun-13 11:48:18

The chillies just arrived and they smell amazing. Thanks maniacbug, I'm pretty excited about all things Mexican now! thanks

Feathered Sat 08-Jun-13 16:15:46

I made the beef hash, and it was great. Very easy. I made it in stages through the evening and then finished it all off once the children were in bed, so I can't comment on the 30 minute thing. It would make a good alternative to bolognese. Tasted healthy too, lots of fresh vegetables. My husband used the leftovers this morning in a breakfast hash - so perfect for a friday evening/ Saturday morning.

So next I'll do something from the Thomasina book . . . but what??? I'm a little bit lost with that one. People who know the book well, what would you recommend for a newbie?

ScienceRocks Sat 08-Jun-13 18:40:32

Feathered, do the tortilla soup. It is really simple (use chipotle paste instead of chipotles in adobe if you want) and tastes fantastic. I don't bother with the deep fried chilli garnish but do all the others, though I use bought tortilla chips instead of frying strips of tortilla.

It will literally give you a flavour of the book.

Other quick ones are the taco recipes and the polenta with mushrooms.

snoworneahva Sat 08-Jun-13 19:10:39

Thomasina has just given me the know how and confidence to spatchcock a chicken - it's marinating in chipotle paste - ok, so not technically her recipe but surely we all hope to gain new skills from each recipe book ....think I'm finally getting my head around jointing a chicken - kitchen shears seem to be the key! Hurrah - no more watery chicken!

Mmm just had the red rice from tm. I deviated from the book somewhat by cooking the rice, and carrots in the rice cooker, and making the rest alongside, halving the chicken stock. I also adder fried jalapenos at the end as DC don't like spice without the chilli it was rather bland, full of veg, and loved by DC. With the chilli and some coriander it was full of spice and very satisfying. This will be a regular accompaniment of meat, it was easy and healthy, and is made of standard house ingredients. I'm very happy with it

greensnail Sat 08-Jun-13 21:17:57

That sounds great pregnantpause, I'd been thinking of trying the red rice and green rice as my children love rice. Will give it a go and add chilli to just mine.

tigerlilygrr Sat 08-Jun-13 21:49:59

Hello all, I'm back! And my MN windowsill is bursting with flowers! Thank you all very much indeed. it's been so lovely to read the thread and catch up!

I am so glad you like the TM book (although maniac one of us must be doing something weird as my chipotles in adobo don't come out that hot! I do rinse out the chilli seeds though....) I can't wait to have a flick through and find some new recipes to try (also to open my JO which I haven't even touched yet). I will be pushed for time next week though as an doing some keeping in touch days as part of mat leave. However am going to plan for my four recipes the week after that.

In terms of the next lot of cookbooks, I too have never really attempted Chinese so that would be awesome. I will go trough the threads and look for our list of reccs with a focus on baking. Back in a sec...

ELR Sun 09-Jun-13 08:16:35

Hi tiger hope you had a fab time. Glad everyone is enjoying lots of cooking, have to admit I haven't cooked anything yes from either book unless you count a very loose version of the chicken soup in the TM book, and i did do a jamie recipe but it was From Jamies dinners
I'm still too hooked on Jerusalem, I called up the library and renewed it for the second time!
Everyone is raving about the mustard chicken so I will give that a go sometime this week I think and also the killer jerk one sounds good too.
It's just hard to find recipes I haven't done yet.
tiger slightly off thread but only a touch! I plan to make gnocchi and profiteroles this week two things I have never made before.

snoworneahva Sun 09-Jun-13 10:41:39

elr homemade gnocchi is amazing - the texture is light and soft and will possibly put you off shop bought for life! There's a great recipe in river cafe green for a sage and chorizo sauce to accompany gnocchi, it comes highly recommended!

Trills Sun 09-Jun-13 13:20:52

I am attempting some huevos rancheros for brunch.

HuevosRancheros Sun 09-Jun-13 13:29:20

Trills, I had it for breakfast grin

Though I must admit, I didn't follow TM's recipe.
I always add a few peppers to the sauce, as well as chipotle paste, neither of which she uses.
Was lush smile

ELR Sun 09-Jun-13 14:22:23

Hi all just to let you know it's free delivery on book people use sing code 99del before midnight tonight. I ordered Every Grain of Rice for £8.99 they also had The Hummingbird bakery Cake Days for £4.99 it's a good book.

We had a mezze type lunch all from tm, the smoky asparagus salad, grilled corn on the cob, with chipitle butter, green rice, and leftover red rice. It was delicious, particularly the corn, and chipotle vinaigrette. Green rice isn't half as nice as the red, but still added to the meal, and DC loved it after I christened it monster rice.grin

HuevosRancheros Sun 09-Jun-13 16:26:36

Dammit ELR, I ordered Every Grain from Amazon for £16ish after you mentioned it, the reviews certainly seemed good.
About to dispatch, can't cancel and get it cheaper at the Book People sad

ELR Sun 09-Jun-13 16:27:04

snow what page is it on? I had a quick flick through river cafe green but can't see it.

ELR Sun 09-Jun-13 16:29:26

huevous oh no that's a shame! I nearly ordered from amazon too the other day but got distracted by ds who had spilt his drink and then I forgot until today.
The reviews do look good so although you may have paid more I'm sure it will be worth it!

HuevosRancheros Sun 09-Jun-13 16:46:25

Always happy for an excuse to buy more cookbooks!
Have ordered Jerusalem and Madhur's Curry Bible through the library, so am saving money by not buying them straight away! wink

Feathered Sun 09-Jun-13 18:57:30

Sciencerocks - thanks . . . I'm going to start with the soup then and use tortilla chips too.

I've looked for the madhur j book and it seems a bit £££. Her easy curry one was approx £7 at the book people so I'm cheating next month and using that instead (rebellious) I bet some of the recipes are the same anyway. Hugh FW has arrived and looks very delicious - the food obviously, not him. I'd prefer him not to be on the cover - the easy curry cover is much prettier. I do like a nicely designed cook book. I definitely judge a book by its cover - shallow I know.

HuevosRancheros Sun 09-Jun-13 19:01:13

Just seen that you are looking for a baking book for next time?
Can thoroughly recommend Short and Sweet by Dan Lepard. Not just sweet , savoury too, and breads et

Feathered Sun 09-Jun-13 19:04:19

If we're looking for Chinese books, does anyone know anything about Ching He Huan? I was looking on Amazon and she has good reviews.

ELR Sun 09-Jun-13 19:21:02

'Every Grain of Rice' looks good for a Chinese book, I think huevos would agree!
Have short and sweet and its good. Other baking books I can recommend are Leon Baking & Puddings and also the hummingbird bakery Cake days is good too.

Feathered- I am using curry easy next month as well, I already have it, and I can't spend 25pound on curry Bible when only 2 of the 4 in my family will eat curry. The dhals are lovely, and yes, it's pretty pretty.

I've asked for every grain of rice as a birthday present, after a review in good food a few months back, so that bodes well for megrin

maniacbug Sun 09-Jun-13 19:50:51

Ooh ELR thank you very much for the tip! Just ordered.

tigerlily interesting... I think it must be the seeds. I rinsed a few out, but left most of them in. Might use my remaining chillies to try and make a slightly milder version next time.

We had the tortilla soup and chicken adobado today. Soup was delicious, will definitely be doing that again. I particularly liked the presentation, all the extra toppings; marinade for the chicken tasted delicious beforehand, but DH absolutely cremated it on the BBQ so was hard to taste afterwards.

Feathered grin I would have preferred the Jamie book without him striking a pose on the front too!

Kneedeepindaisies Sun 09-Jun-13 20:01:52

Need to catch up with the thread but I made TM's chilli today and it was lovely. I did it in the slow cooker though.

Am going to do JO's beef hash at some point this week and probably Jools pregnant pasta next week.

Has anyone done a dessert from TM?

ELR Sun 09-Jun-13 20:04:24

kneedeep try the churros hey are divine it makes loads more than it says. The cheese cake is good too.

I've only got one JO book, and I stuck a sticker over his big daft face on the front. smile

snoworneahva Sun 09-Jun-13 20:25:56

Just bought Ching-he Huang Chinese food made easy - loos fairly straight forward. A bit of everything in it really.

ScienceRocks Sun 09-Jun-13 20:46:13

Knee deep, I have done the cheesecake, pancakes and truffles from TM (my thoughts are near the beginning of this thread). I would love to do the churros (and find it almost impossible to not order them when in wahaca) but have a strange aversion to deep frying.

I have done the frijoles from TM this evening. Took a long time to cook the beans, but then it was quite quick. Tasted great too smile I am planning to freeze the leftovers without the toppings (I used natural Greek yogurt instead of sour cream, and didn't have any crumbly cheese - why? I usually have Cheshire or Wensleydale in the fridge, very odd - so used cheddar). Pic on my twitter (@TodayICooked) linked to the cook book club twitter feed (@ReadCookEat) if anyone wants to look, ditto for many of the other dishes.

I have a TM week lined up. Exciting! grin

I also made the squash and chorizo salad last night for Dh and i. I used a hot red chilli as don't have an arbol, but it was delicious. I cheated a bit by roasting the chorizo along with the rest and omitting olive oil, thinking the chorizo oil would suffice. It did, me and dh loved it, I will make it again. More than the sum of it's parts, and wonderful on a cooling down evening after a hot day.

I'm making the mustard chicken and dauohiniuse(sp sorry) tonight, looking forward to it. Do you think it'll be okay without skin? I only have skinless chicken breasts in.

I have the kinda cassoulet planned for this week, and might revisit the corn and chicken pie that I didn't make last week. What's everyone planning to do?

snoworneahva Mon 10-Jun-13 13:10:04

Doing another JO tonight - Sea Bass wrapped in pancetta with Asian greens and sweet potato mash.

glorious Mon 10-Jun-13 14:57:43

We had the JO chicken satay last night with the noodles and salad. I liked the satay sauce a lot, it's not as sickly as it can be and had a good level of heat. The noodles were nice enough, not thrilling.

Still waiting for Mexican, may have to google as I want to start!

LeonardoAcropolis Mon 10-Jun-13 18:27:14

Hello everyone, i have only just noticed this thread and I have both of these books! Will write an assessment of them tomorrow when on a computer with a proper keyboard grin

I am cooking the trout with chili cream tomorrow, can't wait, but what should I serve alongside it?

greensnail Mon 10-Jun-13 18:28:17

Pregnantpause, I did the mustard chicken without skin as well. It was still lovely.

I'm going away for a few days now, so no more cooking for me until next weekend.

greensnail Mon 10-Jun-13 18:36:09

, Leonardo, we had new potatoewith the trout and I think carrots (mainly because that's dd1's favourite veg). It would be great with potatoes or rice and some short of greens

Pantah630 Mon 10-Jun-13 20:09:47

We had the tortilla from the Tapas menu tonight, with salad and ham. I added a few chunks of cooking chorizo as well and made with duck eggs, rather than hens. Absolutely delicious, all plates clean, even DS1 who no longer lives at home and hates eggs, asked for a slice when he popped in smile

Will be making the mustard chicken, minus skin, on Thursday after all the rave reviews and if there are any bananas left, the baked banana and cinnamon from TM for pud.

Great to see lots of new faces.

snoworneahva Mon 10-Jun-13 20:18:46

Pancetta with sea bass was a hit! Actually it was cod rather than sea bass because it was all I could get. The dressing with the Asian greens was fantastic, will make again. Didn't do the sweet potatoes.

kefybaby Mon 10-Jun-13 20:19:03

We had JO's spaghetti puttanesca tonight. It was ok. DH said it was the best JO meal so far. I was not too amazed but I was glad that DD1 (3) had no objection to eating it (the flavours are pretty strong)! Next stop: chicken satay.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 10-Jun-13 20:27:25

I made the JO pregnant Jools pasta thingy today. Am quite was edible I guess and I did it in 30 mins. Dd refused to eat it. Dh is vegi so hasn't tried it. I think I'm going to be eating it every night this week and can't say I'm thrilled at the thought.

Confirms my opinion that I don't like JO much. Apart from his cheesy leeks which are the best thing ever....not sure which book it's in as I don't have any of his books!

Viva- I was underwhelmed by the pregnant pasta, nothing wrong with it and it got eaten, but I can make nicer pasta dishes alone and faster.
But other dishes have very much impressed me, though I am something of an amateur cook, and the more I cook, the more I'm left querying some of the recipes (esp the ice cream rolled in chocolate and nuts, that's not a recipe!)

VivaLeBeaver Mon 10-Jun-13 21:00:28

When you say other dishes do you mean other JO dishes?

maniacbug Mon 10-Jun-13 21:24:14

AIBU to wonder whether TM's copy editor couldn't have tried a little harder?
'cut them up in slithers' on p.117? Aaargh!
100g dark chocolate in cabbage and radish salad on p.146?
pumpkin seeds 'toased' on p.150?

I'm sure I saw 'as is your want' somewhere too, which drives me insane.

Actually, editing cookbooks would be one of my dream jobs, as I love food and am annoyingly pedantic.

(Haven't cooked from either book today so I'm afraid this is my only contribution!)

ScienceRocks Mon 10-Jun-13 21:29:22

Black bean burritos tonight (not keen on tostadas) using wensleydale instead of feta and tomato salsa. They were fab though I couldn't toast them because I overfilled them quick and easy to do. Highly recommended.

Also made a stash of roast tomato sauce for the freezer.

Kneedeepindaisies Mon 10-Jun-13 22:00:32

Maniac- gringrin

radiohelen Tue 11-Jun-13 10:49:55

Hiya - I lurk a lot but I thought I'd add my four pennarth! You guys are talking about Chinese cook books and as a former Hong Kong dweller I have some experience in this area. Ching is OK. For beginners Ken Hom is your man. Everything works and tastes authentic. His autobiography with recipes was amazing and has lots of stuff that you only get in Chinese homes. I got given Gok for Christmas and haven't touched it. I REALLY want Fuschia Dunlop's Every Grain of Rice. Another one from across the pond is Kylie Kwong. Her stuff is really authentic and interesting. HTH

snoworneahva Tue 11-Jun-13 11:16:00

Just delievered today Simple Chinese cooking by Kylie Kwong - loads of interesting recipes - loving the look of the crispy soft boiled eggs, ingredients are recognisable....tonight I'm going to make White cooked chicken with soy and ginger dressing.

Finally did mustard.chicken today (minor accident yesterday left me unable to cook).

It was nice, and Dh was certainly pleased, it's a step up from usual Tuesday fare and he said it was like having dinner in the local- comforting, slightly better than home, but not gourmet. The children enjoyed it too. I will probably make it again, when the ingredients all happen to be knocking about, I don't think I'd shop for it iykwim.

Though, it took me an hour, mainly because I wouldn't bother with his way for dauphinouse, I roasted it for an hour like a normal person. The chicken I flavoured and roasted too, before adding it to the sauce which I made in a saucepan, in about 5 mins. To me, though it may take longer, shoving things in the oven is better than committing 30mins to a stovetop. The prep is the same.

PartTimeDomesticGoddess Tue 11-Jun-13 22:30:54

Finally able to report that I made something! Was trapani pasta from JO. I really liked it (even though it did look like vomit!), DH less keen.
Have been off colour with some kind of virus, so not felt like cooking much but am trying to decide what to cook for friends on Fri evening. Think it might be the spinach and feta pie from JO. Haven't completely decided yet though, will report back when I have decided
Was also inspired to order Every Grain of Rice which arrived today. Haven't had proper look yet, but it is a beautiful book, love the feel of the cover

kefybaby Tue 11-Jun-13 22:37:20

I also made the mustard chicken today. Best JO recipe so far for us. DH enjoyed it a lot and I was relatively happy with it. I agree with pregnant that it us best cooked in the oven. I also roasted the potatoes and was feeling very guilty to be frying the chicken. The recipe is quite calorific as it is...

ScienceRocks Tue 11-Jun-13 23:16:28

I think the timing really limits the usefulness of 30 Minute Meals (and 15 minute even more so) for me. I really wish that each recipe had a couple of lines at the bottom that said something like "if you have longer than 30 minutes, you could put this in the oven" or "use chicken thighs instead of breast if you aren't time limited".

But I guess that would defy the point of the book grin

It would defeat the point of the gimmick, but, I agree, what's more, as someone else pointed out, at times it seems a race to how much you can make in 30mins. I may be alone, but whilst I like serving lots of plates of food for every one to help themselves, alot of the time I just serve one dish. Pasta for dinner tonight, not pasta, and numerous salads that will be wasted as it's midweek and nobody wants a feast midweek. But still it makes a change and, I was surprised by how easy it was, even outside of the time er, recommendation.

The sausage cassolet was very nice, and, though yet again I roasted for ease, came in at 35mins. I fried the bacon leeks and onion while sausages started to roast, then added fried stuff, beans and pasata, then left it for twenty minutes before adding the crumbs for five mins at the end.

All of my family enjoyed it and it was a very satisfying midweek meal. I'm not sure it needed the broccoli, as it's an all in one dish in itself. The broccoli got eaten, but I won't make it again.

The desert was nice, dh loved it, but he will eat meringue in any way served him. DC dubious, but enjoyed it.

I'm quite proud that I made the full meal, and close to 30 mins. I feel all domestic goddess serving desert on a Wednesday.

PurpleGeekyGirl Wed 12-Jun-13 20:22:40

Hello, can I just join in with this?? I have all the books already for June and July (cook books are my porn wink) but am lacking the inspiration to use them!!

Parsnipcake Wed 12-Jun-13 20:59:29

Can I join too? I buy loads of cookbooks and then get overwhelmed and end up using recipes off the Internet. I cooked the easy chilli and red rice from TM last night and it was very good - even though I used mince instead of braising steak. The chorizo worked well.

Fellow cookbook porners, how do you meal plan etc? I really want someone to invent an app that will make a shopping list from the recipes I like, but am currently resorting to index cards for meal planning. Does anyone have a good system?

HuevosRancheros Wed 12-Jun-13 21:26:03

Parsnip, not sure if this is what you mean, but have you seen Eat My Books?

Parsnipcake Wed 12-Jun-13 22:26:17

Hue via, that looks exactly what I need, thankyou so much!

maniacbug Wed 12-Jun-13 22:49:12

DCs had TM's empanadas yesterday with baked beans (little bit of 'fusion' cuisine there), and they went down very well. DS2 even asked for a second 'cheese and ham pasty' hmm. I was fasting so had two today for lunch instead. Yum. Not exactly a gourmet feast but easy + tasty + would do again for a quick tea, or picnic, or maybe even smaller canapé-style ones, though might be tricky containing the filling.

Had TM's one-pot bacon, beans + pumpkin tonight, which was... OK. I regularly do something similar (and nicer, IMHO) with chorizo and chick peas. It looked a bit soup-like and DCs all hate soup (weirdos), so I ended up adding a can of chopped tomatoes and reducing the sauce for an extra 30 mins on the hob. We had it with the green rice, which was really + truly delicious. I always love discovering a new method for cooking something I make a lot, and I will definitely be adopting this and probably also experimenting a little with it. Think it would make a great accompaniment to a simple curry.

Jamie for the rest of the week... Might do the sea bass tomorrow on the strength of positive reviews, then chicken satay on Friday. Bumping cassoulet up my list too - good to hear it can be done in (nearly) 30 mins!

maniacbug Wed 12-Jun-13 23:01:32

Forgot to say, I crumbled feta over my bacon, beans and pumpkin along with the sour cream etc. because I had some and it needed using up, and it actually went quite well with it. (Also left out chipotle paste, to avoid inflicting pain on DCs. Just added some to my portion when I dished up.)

ZuleikaJambiere Thu 13-Jun-13 20:07:22

I made the summer veg lasagne, Tuscan tomato salad and mango frozen yogurt meal at the weekend, and it was a hit, although I reckon it took me nearly an hour and a half to make shock, partly because I didn't have the 'quick' ingredients and had to use dry pasta, fresh broad beans and fresh mango, but even without these it would've been closer to an hour than an hour and a half. However it was really tasty and I'll do all the dishes in it again.

I'm really torn on how I feel about the JO book, on one hand the claims that its quick and cheap and gives more time for the family make me quite irrationally cross, and don't get me started on the lack of timings and random dishes, sides and desserts in one meal. But on the other hand, i will definitely be making my food processor do more work in future and there are plenty of recipes I still want to try - mustard chicken, satay chicken and beef hash, as recommended by you lot, plus the quick brownies, chocolate ganache, and other puddings that have slipped my mind.

I'm still waiting for TM, and still second in the queue. And my library doesn't have Madhur Jaffrey at all for next month. So I'll probably be doing Mexican food next month and be totally out of sync! I've heard great things about MJ, but we have an amazing curry shop near my work, that mix up fresh spices on demand and then you just add meat/fish/veggies and liquid and slow cook. I'm not convinced I'll ever make a better curry, so don't feel I'm missing out by not getting MJ

Radiohelen I liked your thoughts on Chinese cookery books - I only have Ching and Ken, but I don't think I've cooked anything from Ken as so many dishes are deep fried (and I'm scared of all that hot oil). On baking, no one has suggested Mary Berry yet, surely she needs to be considered?

PartTimeDomesticGoddess Thu 13-Jun-13 22:10:19

Tortilla soup for dinner tonight, it was delicious, enjoyed by both of us and will be done again. Although it wasn't quick to cook, it was pretty low effort until the deep frying of tortillas at the end (almost unheard of for me to do deep frying, DD(10) was most impressed grin)
Zuleika am very envy about that curry shop being near where you work

Pantah630 Thu 13-Jun-13 23:26:33

We had the mustard chicken meal tonight, chicken and dauphinois done in the oven as above, greens and pud. It was nice but not wow I'm afraid, I don't think I'd bother again,although DS2 loved the potatoes.
I have Every Grain of Rice on order, thanks for The Book People heads up above, snuck Hairy Bikers Curries and Michele Roux Jrs book into the basket as well blush

maniacbug Thu 13-Jun-13 23:55:46

PTDG if you do it again, shallow frying the tortilla strips worked for me. Thought I might try brushing them with oil and sticking them in the oven next time as an alternative. (I have never been able to bring myself to deep fry anything; MIL used to have a rather scary built-in deep fat fryer in her kitchen, and I think that put me off for life.)

We had the sea bass + pancetta tonight, which was nice... DD said I had to report back that they thought it was 'excellent, apart from the mash'. (TBH they might have liked it more if I'd peeled the sweet potatoes.) The dressing for the greens made a change from plain steamed; I added runner beans too. There were enough flavours going on with the fish + the greens that if I did this again, would do with plain new potatoes or regular mash; or maybe flavoured mash and plain greens. But not both.

Incidentally I was a bit flummoxed when I got to the first instruction for the sweet potatoes and it involved a microwave, which we don't have. Only took about 15 mins to steam them, but glad I wasn't clock-watching!

HuevosRancheros Fri 14-Jun-13 07:29:27

Wow, Zuleika, that takes me back.
My parents used to love a day trip to Sudbury, and it was never complete without a trip to Rafi's..... so glad she is still going. I found one of her cookbooks at my parents' house the other day! And now I know she is online, I may have to place an order! smile

ZuleikaJambiere Fri 14-Jun-13 08:35:54

I work near the other store Huevos, it is fab. Sadly Rafi died recently sad. I didn't know she had written a cookery book

Panta, HAiry Bikers Curry book is fab grin. The butter chicken recipe is quite long but so worth the effort and everyone loved it

Pantah630 Fri 14-Jun-13 10:48:56

Just skimmed through it cat it looks very good and far more tempting than MJ Curry Bible to me. I forgot I also got Bill Granger's Everyday Asian and that also is looking good. It's dead at work today so I'm going to be salivating over my cookbook purchases all day smile

LeonardoAcropolis Fri 14-Jun-13 13:08:22

I absolutely love that Hairy Bikers Curry book, it is one of the best cookbooks I own. The recipes are so accessible.

Aren't they just, Leonardo. I was really surprised by the book and have cooked three recipes from it in the last two weeks and they have all been lovely. The basic Dahl is really good. I just bought a cheap spice grinder on Amazon to whizz up my coriander and fenugreek seeds for my next curry. Sorry to hijack the thread but I am really chuffed with this book grin

Am making Jamie's Crusted Cod tonight as by chance, I have all of the ingredients in the fridge. Will report back later

ELR Fri 14-Jun-13 18:07:07

Hi everyone not managed to cook anything from the books this week so far as been super busy. Just read through the thread, maybe we should switch to the hairy bikers curry book if people are finding it difficult to get hold of the Madhur jaffrey one, thoughts everyone?
I got my book people delivery today and every grain of rice looks good. I also ordered the observer monthly book called cook which looks good. Doing a salsa and the guacamole from TM tonight to eat with a nice bottle of beer. Then will def do something on the weekend.

Pantah630 Fri 14-Jun-13 19:30:48

JO Mushroom Rissotto and spinach salad was delicious, will definately make again. I did soak the dried porcini -- and extra dried wild mush-- before adding to the pan though and added the soaking liquid to the bubbling stock I was adding. Didn't bother with the pudding, we rarely have one and the cherry/ice cream/coffee concoction from yesterday was too much.

Crusted cod (Jamie) was nice but not fabulous. I suspect I overlooked it a little which didn't help. The anchovies came through nicely and the herbs. I would try this again but with fish that hadn't been previously frozen as I think this affected the flavour

ScienceRocks Fri 14-Jun-13 20:06:32

Steak burritos here tonight. Good but not great, mainly because I I just can't get on with steak. DH very happy though smile

PartTimeDomesticGoddess Fri 14-Jun-13 22:54:26

Asian salmon with noodle broth followed by frangipane tarts, as wasn't bothered about trying to do it in 30 mins. Both were really delicious and will be cooked again. Only comment about the noodle broth was that the noodles took longer to cook than the packet said as I don't think they were in enough liquid, and they soaked up almost all of the liquid (so they were nicely wet rather than in a broth IYSWIM). Not an issue at all, but next time, I think I would use either use less noodles/add more stock. Very tasty and quick, and I felt didn't need the beansprout salad to go with at all (although I can see that it might add some interesting textures to an otherwise 'soft' meal)
I did make my own sweet pastry for the tarts (because I wanted to --and because I have underused individual tart tins--) but they were very quick and easy, and very yum. Didn't need the suggested creme fraiche at all, and have put 2 in the freezer.
I agree with previous posters in as much as I feel slightly frustrated by the JO book. I think there are potentially some great recipes in there, but don't enjoy the lay out and think that a lot of the menus are more than is needed, certainly for every day meals. I would have liked it to be set out in terms of mains/sides/deserts (with maybe some suggestions for each main as to which sides would work well). I am sure that I would not have bothered to try as many as I now think I will, if it wasn't for this thread

Pantah630 Sat 15-Jun-13 06:35:08

ELR Maybe we could offer up HB Curries as an alternative July book for those that can't access MJ Curry Bible. I had the CB out of the library last week but someone else kneedeep wink had it on order so I photocopied the two recipes I wanted to try. Must admit there weren't many recipes that I did want to try so will probably supplement with recipes from HB as well.

I agree with parttime above that if it wasn't for this thread I wouldn't have bothered trying to cook from JO if it wasn't for this thread as the layout and lack of timings make for frustration in a seasoned cook but I do think this is great for those with no kitchen confidence or little experience. DS1 loves it, he has just left home and in a shared house, he cooks but has little repertoire so this, and 15min meals, fits the bill well.

Kneedeepindaisies Sat 15-Jun-13 19:27:15

Sorry Pantah, I appear to be stalking you.grin

I did have the MJ book on order but when I went to collect it someone had pinched it off the reserve shelf! shock

akarucker Sat 15-Jun-13 19:44:06

I think I'll put the sea bass on the menu for next week. Got a question though - as I've never bought or made sea bass before. It says skin on fillets, scaled & pin boned; can I buy it frozen like that? I'm thinking that usually frozen doesn't have the skin on, but wondering if someone could let me know. Thanks ever so!

Pantah630 Sat 15-Jun-13 19:45:38

grin don't worry thy wont be allowed to renew it if its on order so you should have in time for next month. Do check out HB Curries though it looks really good, I also treated myself to a spice grinder from Amazon so plan to make one next week. I also found myself in the Chinese supermarket earlier, stocking up on essentials Bill and Kylie told me I need smile

Pantah630 Sat 15-Jun-13 19:46:08

^^gullible me blush

Kneedeepindaisies Sat 15-Jun-13 19:50:07

I've seen HB curries cheap somewhere but don't know where. I have the HB diet book which has a korma in it I think.

Are we swapping books next month then?

ELR Sat 15-Jun-13 19:54:43

I suppose we could do both of those curry books along with the Hugh fearnley veg everyday.

HB curry book is on The Book People.

Kneedeepindaisies Sat 15-Jun-13 20:51:44

Thanks Remus.

I need to find the HFW book too. If Pantah hasn't nabbed it already. wink

Cantdothisagain Sat 15-Jun-13 21:10:08

OK, I'm back on board... did the steak burritos tonight, and made the refried beans as suggested in the recipe which I found very very moreish. Enjoying the chipotle salsa too. Enjoyed the whole thing.

Last week I made the chocolate/pecan banana bread from Wahaca (wrong book, same writer though)which was lovely too.

I have also tried the guacamole in both TM books and prefer the Mexican Food Made Simple version as it's tomato-free (I don't like tomatoes).

Jamie's book - I need to pick it up again.

Pantah630 Sat 15-Jun-13 22:29:54

You're ok kneedeep, I already have HFW in my bookcase smile

Ooh have had the HFW book for over a year and made nothing from it. I'm in for next month smile

I'm interested to see what people actually like from the HFW one tbh. It's done naff all for me, so far.
One curry which dp swallowed manfully and then admitted he hated - edible but a faff and nowhere near as nice as any of the other curries I make;
entirely tasteless dhal

Everything else is pretty much cheese on toast or other snacks.

snoworneahva Sun 16-Jun-13 15:40:32

I'm not keen on HFW veg either, have tried a few things and found them all a bit dull. I think it's too safe - written fora certain type of meat eater rather than veggies.

Thanks goodness for that. Everybody seems to rave about it and I think it's really boring and is mostly snacks and sides, rather than meals.

Hmm, am making the beetroot and walnut hummus from HFW book right now. Haven't added the walnuts yet as they are still toasting. It's not looking the most exciting dish so far although the colour is beautiful ........ It's to go with a Greek themed dinner tomorrow so if its bland, there will plenty of other garlicky, herby things to liven it up smile

Ooh, it's quite interesting actually. You can really taste the walnuts and the beetroot is lovely and sweet. Might serve it with an artistic drizzle of Greek yoghurt! Not sure what the kids will make of it though!

ScienceRocks Mon 17-Jun-13 16:43:00

It's a bit "last month" but I made banana buttermilk pancakes this weekend from nigella feast and they were fab! I used half milk, half natural yogurt in place of the buttermilk. Highly recommended.

No cooking from this month's books this weekend but I did take the DDs to Wahaca for brunch. I think this counts smile

glorious Mon 17-Jun-13 17:57:21

Waaa my TM book still hasn't arrived at the library. I might have to buy it grin

Cantdothisagain Mon 17-Jun-13 19:56:09

I like the beetroot and walnut hummus from HFW and have made it a few times. I also like the carrot hummus. I haven't got the book in front of me but I really didnt like the curry I tried- it tasted blah and the sauce was watery. The honey roasted tomatoes are good in a salad with Puy lentils and rocket.

Cant- the cauliflower curry was watery, and very bland. I have written - ' waste of time and spices, look elsewhere if you fancy a curry' in the margin.

The pasties though are lovely.

greensnail Mon 17-Jun-13 21:02:14

I'm back from my holiday and looking forward to getting back to cooking. Will be doing red rice tomorrow.

I have the maddhur jaffrey book on order from the library but have been looking for an excuse to get the hairy bikers curry book so will join in with doing that too I think.
Interesting to hear the good reviews for the sea bass with pancetta. Sea bass is dh's absolute favourite food so will have to try that recipe for him next week I think.

snoworneahva Mon 17-Jun-13 21:03:25

I've been having a bit of a thing with cabbage recently - I've never had a thing with cabbage, always thought it was a bit dull but not now, now I'm so I'm full of shiny curiosity for the green stuff.

Tonight I made General Tso's chicken and served it with Jamie's Kimchee slaw - what a great combination. The chicken was sticky, slightly spicy and salty....the kimchee was fresh tasting, citrus, coriander, chilli - dh thought very like a Thai salad. Anyhow we loved it - originally the Kimchee was supposed to go with Jamie's green curry - but I can't get with slaw and green curry the textures are all wrong for me.

Feathered Mon 17-Jun-13 21:04:18

Yum . . . yum . . . YUM!!!! I just made the TM Tortilla Soup. Very easy and delicious. As recommended here I used the discovery chipotle stuff and tortilla crisps and that made it super easy (thank you - lovely person who told me to do this . . . v sorry but I've forgotten who it was) . I'll definitely make it again. Dh added leftover lamb + coriander to his and I had the avocado, feta and coriander. Hooray! Happiness all round.

I'm planning a leisurely cook book reading session tomorrow to decide what's next . . . something from JO I think.

snoworneahva Mon 17-Jun-13 21:05:28

I seem to remember Hugh's Biriyani was pretty awful too - one of the worst things I have ever cooked.

HuevosRancheros Mon 17-Jun-13 22:00:54

I made the chipotles en adobo, and it is fantastic!
I should be blush to admit this, but yesterday I had it with the simple tomato salsa and left-over Pizza Hut margerita pizza...
And today I had it with beans on toast

I know, I know no shame grin

I did the red rice the other day, and really enjoyed that.

I got the MJ curry bible out of the library the other day, but nothing has grabbed me from it. So I accidentally ordered the Hairy Bikers' curry book from Amazon (having never watched anything of theirs, so you lot had better be recommending it sincerely!)

I also bought a kilo of the dried chipotles, which is way too many for my needs, and my larder now stinks of smoke, so if anyone would like some to have a bash at the en adobo, I would be very happy to send them out and share the love wink

ScienceRocks Mon 17-Jun-13 22:13:18

Huevos, if you have no other takers I would love some chipotles to adobe smile PM me if you are sure you want to give some away. I can PayPal you the cost plus postage and packing.

ScienceRocks Mon 17-Jun-13 22:14:04

Oh, and feathered, I'll immodestly say that it was me that suggested the chipotle paste and tortilla chips for the tortilla soup, though I'm sure others did too grin

Pantah630 Mon 17-Jun-13 22:19:59

Im going to have to try the tortilla soup aren't I? smile

Cantdothisagain Mon 17-Jun-13 22:25:42

The chipotles en adobe are delicious, I agree. Love the green rice too.

I had forgotten the pasties! We liked those. I also like the garlic magic breads. Will avoid the biriani!

Hello, can I join in? I'm a cookbook obsessive with around 100 books.

I've got Jamie's 30 min meals and made sausage cassoulet tonight, it was a mix between the 30 min kinda sausage cassoulet and his other sausage cassoulet recipe and is the 4th or 5th time I've made it but its always a winner with everyone!!

Which Madhur Jaffrey book are you using? I have curry easy so far.

HuevosRancheros Tue 18-Jun-13 08:58:27

OK, I'm sending some chipotles to ScienceRocks tomorrow, anyone else want some while I'm at the post office?

I have another 200g, which will make one batch of the en adobo, for the first taker smile

KneeDeepInDaisies Tue 18-Jun-13 09:09:53

I made JO's beef hash and the beans last night.

It was ok. A bit dry, the timings were out. Would maybe make it again.

What's happening next month book wise then?

LeonardoAcropolis Tue 18-Jun-13 09:43:13

HUEVOS I would love the chilies if they're still going?

I made Jamie's oozy mushroom Risotto last night, it was ok. The spinach salad was really tasty, it uses both balsamic vinegar and lemon juice in the dressing which I would never think of doing myself. I didn't use pine nuts though, and didn't do the cheesecake dessert..

Tonight we are having the Chicken dim sum from Jamie's 15 minute meals, does anyone have that book?

I have Jamie's 15 mins. Some of the recipes are quite nice. We made the chicken Laksa recently which was yummy. I must admit to being put off a little by the photos - everything looks so brown and unappealing.

Are you making the coconut buns Leonardo? Left us know how they turn out. I fancied them but then read a few negative comments and made something else smile

HuevosRancheros Tue 18-Jun-13 10:25:19

Leonardo, they are yours!

Just PM me your name and address and I'll post them out tomorrow smile

LeonardoAcropolis Tue 18-Jun-13 10:53:56

Thanks Huevos! I've sent the PM.

catwithflowers yes, that Laksa is yummy, especially the chicken. I am making the buns, I have made this meal a few times and no way does it take only 15 minutes. I use an electric steamer. The buns are nice although need more seasoning than stated in the recipe and they stick to the paper cases like glue. I'm not sure how authentic they are, a Chinese chef might curse them! But like most of JO's 30 minute and 15 minute meals, this is bursting with many different flavours, something that really appeals to DH and I.

glorious Tue 18-Jun-13 11:33:38

Welcome strawberry.

I've run out of patience with the library and ordered TM. Bad blush

KneeDeepInDaisies Tue 18-Jun-13 12:10:34

I've just realised I have loads of JO books but I don't really like them.

The odd recipe here and there are ok but I want a cookbook where I want to, and can, cook 3/4 of it. < wails>

Leonardo I may give it a go then smile. I think I have nearly all of JO's books and do like lots of the recipes. I think the only one I haven't cooked from is the America one which I was given as a present but doesn't appeal at all.

I did recently make the Trapani style rigatoni in 30 Min Meals (p40) and it was really lovely and will definitely make again. I also make his salsa verde loads to go with fish of meat (p170)

ScienceRocks Tue 18-Jun-13 13:05:07

Cat, a good place to start with jamie Oliver's America is the green chilli recipe. I serve it with lettuce wraps and yogurt. Fab!

Parsnipcake Tue 18-Jun-13 13:09:00

I make the coconut buns quite a lot - we often put some filling in, a bit of teriyaki sauce with prawns or leftover pork works well.

The timescale side of Jamie's books doesn't bother me, I like both books because they are good for getting me out of a rut- there are some very clever ideas, and with a bit of tweaking or time most if the recipes work. My kids adore the pickled cucumber salad and it's so easy.

Pantah630 Tue 18-Jun-13 13:15:58

I'm the same with JO, have loads of his books but have cooked very little from them. Think I have enough to put him on the list for the next 12 months shock at least this thread is making me actually cook from my books, rather than drooling over them, then gazing lovingly at the stacks in my bookcase and piles on the floor. I may end up culling a few in the end though.

Thanks Science. Will go and have a look now!

Pantah630 Tue 18-Jun-13 13:18:59

Not sure re next months books, think we are waiting for Tigerto give us a definitive list but looking like HFW Veg book and either/or Madhur's Jaffreys Curry Bible/Hairy Bikers Curries. Am wondering if there will be a mass passing on of the Veg book to the Charity shops after the reviews up thread grin

I made the tortilla soup today- I agree with the others, it was delicious. I made the accompaniments suggested, and each added something to the overall flavour. It was lovely. Even the avocado and I'm not usually a fan.

My house stinks after deep frying the tortilla though. I will invest in some tortilla chips for tomorrows leftovers.

I did modify my method, in that I added the chipotle at the end, after blitzing. This allowed me to separate DC portion before spicing it up. They loved it, but obviously it's just tomato soup for them.

I'm either making summer tacos or Jamie cheat pizza tonight, I will report back.

snoworneahva Tue 18-Jun-13 13:56:19

Panta It felt like I was a lone voice of decent on the very popular Hugh's Veg Everyday thread - so I wouldn't worry about it, most people will probably love it. I intend to cook some side dishes from it. I am always after that elusive recipe that sounds ridiculously simple but the flavours are mind blowing - it's always worth a go. Hugh probably has more experience putting together side dishes to go with meat than veggie mains.

I was veggie for 25 years and I was constantly amazed by how easily pleased meat eaters were, when it came to cliched veggie food.

LeonardoAcropolis Tue 18-Jun-13 14:14:50

Cat I have JO's America too, bought after I was inspired by Man vs Food grin. Plenty in there I like, especially the Gumbo. science do you think that the green chili would work with Turkey Mince?

The JO book I don't really click with is Great Britain.

Parsnipcake Tue 18-Jun-13 14:26:51

I sort of hope I won't like HFW veg as its a big book and I could buy 2 new ones in its place if I get rid. I also have 3 good things which I haven't used either. Porridge and crackling? Really?

KneeDeepInDaisies Tue 18-Jun-13 14:28:43

I love some of JO's recipes but they are few and far between. When you compare some of his books to Jerusalem or Kitchen Diaries, his come up a bit flat. I know its unfair to compare them to Jerusalem. grin

Saying that I love his fish pie, can't remember the book though. Also steak, Guinness and cheese pie and a chicken dish from Jamie's Dinners and a curry from one of the Naked Chef books.

Am going to try his sausage rolls and mackerel pâté this week instead of a proper meal.

ELR Tue 18-Jun-13 14:39:56

kneedeep the sausage rolls and pâté are really nice, I recommend you give the salad a go too its an odd combo but tastes really good.

ELR Tue 18-Jun-13 18:58:34

leonardo after reading that you were having the coconut buns from jo 15 minute meals I have made the same! Been meaning to make this for ages and you reminded me. I had half a tin of coconut milk in the fridge which needed to be used up and had all the other ingredients. Was very impressed although I didn't steam the chicken I stir fried it then added mushrooms, red chilli and spring onion then the sauce. I steamed green beans and edamame beans and then just added these at the end. Took about 12 minutes start to finish although kitchen does look like a bomb site! I made a cucumber salad to go with it but used my own recipe as don't have the book so was cooking from memory after flicking through it in the bookshop!

ELR Tue 18-Jun-13 18:59:28

leonardo I too struggle to click with the jo Great Britain!

I made the cheats pizza tonight- nothing to write home about, but, very easy, and open to creative thinking. The dough, and the fry and grill method will be adopted for quick pizza in this house. DC love it, dh loved it, and I am suitably impressed that it was done in 20 mins. I didn'tmake the salads as he suggested, as DC wouldn't eat it and I don't like tomatoes. It went well with a watercress, rocket and parma ham salad though.

I will mention that to serve four adults you'd need more than this makes. Unless my family are particularly greedyshock .

greensnail Tue 18-Jun-13 20:27:06

Red rice this evening was an absolute success. Yummy noises and requests for more from everyone. Will try them with the green rice next week I think.

Am doing the JO chicken pie next. Anyone else done this?

Green- it and the.peas that go with it are my favourite recipe in the book.

ELR Tue 18-Jun-13 21:22:02

green ive done the pie loads of times its yummy and also love the dessert with that recipe.

maniacbug Tue 18-Jun-13 21:29:13

Feeling a bit rebellious as am having a week off: cheese toasties for DCs and ready meal for me tonight (DH currently being wined and dined in the Far East; trying v. hard not to be envy).
snow can I ask, what's your favourite veggie recipe book? And/or anyone else, for that matter? We're not veggie but are striving to eat less meat, and I'm compiling a list of favourite veg mains as I discover them - and using Leith's Vegetarian Bible whenever I get stuck - but would love an exciting and reliable veggie cookbook to turn to, where veg takes the starring rather than supporting role.

maniacbug Tue 18-Jun-13 21:37:22

Parsnipcake I don't have the book, but porridge (kasha) and crackling is a traditional old-school Russian (and I assume probably Eastern European) thing. Never tried it, but assume it's the combination of mush/crisp, bland/salty... what's the third 'good thing' he suggests with them?

ScienceRocks Tue 18-Jun-13 21:45:41

Leonardo, turkey mince would be fine for the green chilli in JO America. Beef mince would be too greasy, I reckon, but turkey would be nice.

I didn't like JO Great Britain either. I got it free with a book people order, but nothing leapt out at me when I flicked through so I traded it in on amazon blush

ScienceRocks Tue 18-Jun-13 21:53:20

Made the TM red snapper with pineapple and tomatoes tonight, albeit with sea bass instead of snapper. I was unsure, but it was actually really tasty. I served it with new potatoes as suggested.

maniacbug Tue 18-Jun-13 22:15:48

So much for my week off, you've inspired me Science! I have pineapple, tomatoes + new potatoes and will be going past the fishmongers tomorrow anyway. Red snapper not being even remotely local, I will see what they recommend!

ScienceRocks Tue 18-Jun-13 22:28:24

smile Maniacbug

snoworneahva Tue 18-Jun-13 22:43:52

Maniac I love Denis Cotter, i have all his books - his appreciation of flavours is mind blowing - he's light on dogma too - my favourite is his Paradiso Seasons it rarely disappoints. Be warned though it requires a bit of effort but it's worth it and certainly will impress any guests you have for dinner. His Wild Garlic, gooseberries and me is a book that I need to revisit now I've fallen head over heels for Brassicas.

For speedier dinners I like Cranks Fast Food - some good short cuts, world food, fresh zingy flavours. Catherine Mason's Vegetable heaven contains some gems too.

snoworneahva Tue 18-Jun-13 22:52:19

maniac from Leiths there's a great puy lentil lattice puff pastry pie - it's brilliant....I haven't made it in years....oh memories. smile

ScienceRocks Tue 18-Jun-13 23:29:22

Grr. None of next month's books are available from my local library and I can only reserve the HFW one from elsewhere and at a cost. Reluctant, given my dislike of other hfw and river cottage books confused
The other two aren't even listed for the borough shock


ScienceRocks Wed 19-Jun-13 07:33:35


TM is following me on twitter!


HuevosRancheros Wed 19-Jun-13 09:09:26

maniac, I really like Yotam Ottolenghi's Plenty, all veggie, but different.
That is actually the only veggie book I own, I tend to just adapt meaty dishes. I had high hopes of Tender, by Nigel Slater, but a lot of his stuff needs a garnish of bacon, or is actually a meat/fish dish with added veg. Good for those who need to get more veg in their diet, I guess

glorious Wed 19-Jun-13 10:12:54

Go science!

HuevosRancheros Wed 19-Jun-13 11:18:51

Science and Leonardo, I have just posted off the chillies to you, second class. Huge apologies for the state of the wrapping; I had no jiffy bags, so had to resort to carrier bags and gaffer tape blush
As someone upthread (maniac??) said, who had bought the same chillies, from the same place, they are hot!. So I really would recommend washing as many seeds out as you can when she says you should!

Enjoy! smile

Ooh, Science grin

KneeDeepInDaisies Wed 19-Jun-13 15:29:37

Oooh Science. I'm jealous!

What's happened to TigerLilly?

ScienceRocks Wed 19-Jun-13 16:15:54

Thanks HuevosRancheros - for posting and for the advice!

Tigerlily has been gone for a while, hasn't she? I think she said her kitchen was being done, maybe that's it. Or maybe she's on her jollidays...

LeonardoAcropolis Wed 19-Jun-13 19:53:27

Thanks huevos you are a star flowers

Made the one pot bacon, beans and pumpkin from to this evening- I didn't serve rice or an accompaniment as I thought it was enough with the beans and pumpkin (although I used squash)
It was very nice, spicy, as expected, and tasty. Dh would eat this kind of fare everyday if he could, he is a happy mangrin
I'm really enjoying Mexican this month, I think I've done twice as much from TO than any of the previous books. It is very accessible. This could also have been affected by budget though, I'm still waiting to invest in a leg of lamb for the sharwamawink

maniacbug Wed 19-Jun-13 20:46:23

Thanks for veg book recommendations snow, will look those up. I remember going to Cranks in Soho (I think?) waaaaay back in the late 80s. Thanks also Huevos, I must revisit Plenty. I have Tender 1 as well, but have hardly used it. I do find him a bit heavy-handed with the starchy carbs and double cream, but should probably give it another go.

Yep, those chipotles are seriously hot. I didn't deliberately rinse out any more seeds than naturally floated to the bottom of the pan, and my sauce is definitely hotter than Discovery. On the plus side, I don't think I'll ever need to spend money on chipotles again as I have enough to last me a lifetime and beyond.

greensnail Wed 19-Jun-13 21:33:39

Oh, I was just going to do the chicken pie without the sides and puddings but you've got me convinced I'll need to try the peas and pudding now too!

I was wondering about tiger Lily too. I think she said she had some keeping in touch days so was busy but seems to have been gone for a while now, hope all is ok.

Green- the carrots IMO were a waste of time. Weird texture and add nothing to the meal, I just steam batons or broccoli.

ELR Thu 20-Jun-13 09:50:10

pregnant I quite like the carrots! Often do them like that for other meals for a change.

Green will be the decider thengrin

glorious Thu 20-Jun-13 17:13:59

Yay, my guiltily purchased Mexican made simple has arrived. Planning to cook everything at the weekend armed with maniacbug's chipotles grin

akarucker Thu 20-Jun-13 19:20:30

Made the JO sea bass meal tonight. The whole meal was delicious (didn't do the ice cream). Highly recommend it. Even the sweet potato dish was delicious and I didn't think it would be, with all the strange flavour concoctions, but it was.

greensnail Thu 20-Jun-13 20:23:25

Does that mean I have to do the carrots too now?! Dd1 only eats carrots raw so I may end up doing carrots three ways to try to please everyone. Have bought stuff to do the peas, but decided against the pudding. I have loads of berries in the fridge which everyone will eat very happily so can't bear the thought of spending time making something with them that they will probably reject. Will be doing the pie tomorrow so will report back then.

Fasting today so drooling over my books instead of eating smile

tigerlilygrr Thu 20-Jun-13 21:24:59

Hello, literally just caught up with the thread! I am sorry I've been gone so long... I was on holiday for three lovely weeks and then a keeping in touch week at work which was really hectic. obviously on holiday there were a lot of meals out and last week i was getting home very late, so I have cooked nothing more inspiring than jacket potato and cheese all month... Bar last night where I made Nigel slater's spag Bol again, it's just so good and is now clearly on rotation!

So I need to catch up very quickly as tomorrow will make a start with pregnant jools' pasta and the chicory salad. I have to say I don't love the JO so far... although the recipes sound good, I am just not a huge fan of the format. I do see though that if you're perhaps a bit less confident it would work well.

On another note we need to confirm books for next month and choose for August. I have hfw veg and mj ultimate curry bible for next month. From this thread I think there are some doubters... I've never tried either author so have no view at present. Is there a consensus? Any alternatives?

For August I think we'd concluded a baking book and a Chinese one which I am mad keen on personally, as I've never tried to cook Chinese food. Did we decide on specific books?

ELR Thu 20-Jun-13 21:42:18

Hi tiger welcome back! I too have hardly cooked from the books this month as been super busy.
I think some people were uncertain about hfw, I have the book and have cooked a little from it but not much. As all the pictures look lovely was happy to try to cook more but equally happy if people wanted to try something different.
The second book by mj people were finding it hard to get hold of I think so suggestions were made to cook from curry bible and curry easy both by mj and hairy bikers curry book.
For August I'm dying to try every grain of rice by fuchsia Dunlop which I think a few if us have got. Then I think it was a baking book and short and sweet by dan Lepard was mentioned.
I'm still mad on Jerusalem and have 5 friends for dinner tomorrow and I'm doing a full menu from there!
Happly cooking everyone!
And yes green we are awaiting your verdict.....

glorious Thu 20-Jun-13 21:57:52

Welcome back tigerlily. Wow, a whole week of kit, very brave smile. I'm on mat leave atm and work seems very remote.

I have no strong feelings on next month. I've got the veg book which I like and the curry book's on order.

I love Fuschia Dunlop and Every Grain is probably the most approachable of her books. Plus I've just got Short and Sweet and it's amazing.

glorious Thu 20-Jun-13 21:58:22

Fuchsia rather blush

HuevosRancheros Thu 20-Jun-13 22:01:27

I got Madhur Jaffrey's Curry Bible out of the library, and nothing really grabbed me. Spurred on by talk on this thread, and rave Amazon reviews, I got the Hairy Bikers' curry book, and love it. Made one curry already, another planned for tomorrow! smile

Also through reading this thread I got Every Grain of Rice by Fuchsia Dunlop, and would wholeheartedly recommend it as the Chinese book, I am completely in love. So many lovely sounding recipes (and for veggies too!). In fact, I am going to have a nice big shop at our local asian grocers tomorrow, yay!

And despite having cooked loads from Short and Sweet, there are still a hundred things I want to make from it; Dan Lepard's recipes rarely let me down. A really good baking book for a novice, as it gives all the background info/theory to the processes. But lots of exciting flavour combos to please old hands smile
The chocolate custard muffins are the best choc muffins I have ever eaten and I have tried a few in my time!

LeonardoAcropolis Thu 20-Jun-13 22:03:27

I made Green Chili from JO America tonight with the Pink Pickled Onions and Roasted Chili Salsa from Thomasina 's book - delicious! I usually make an onion, coriander and lime relish alongside a stew but this recipe calls for the red onion to be steeped in boiling water for 10 minutes which slightly cooks them and removes some acidity. Really nice,sshould be served with all meals from that book.

The Salsa was good, but i overcooked the garlic. The recipe also recommends mashing the veg in a pestle and mortar, which i didn't have time for so blitzed it in a blender. Sloppier than it is supposed to be, still nice but I will make a different Salsa next time.

tigerlilygrr Thu 20-Jun-13 22:23:28

Ok so to confirm for next month:
- stick with Hugh fw veg (should be easy to get recipes on internet so no huge commitment / effort required
- as the curry book, go for mj curry bible and curry easy plus the hairy bikers curry book.

That sounds like it should be easy for everyone to find at least four recipes so that's good.

Then for August fuschia Dunlop every grain of rice (I am really excited about that, it looks so pretty and I do love s pretty book, definitely buying that one) and dan lepard short and sweet. What a lovely month! I confess to looking forward more to August than to July. But the point of the thread is to try new things so will give July a fair shot.

Glorious a week of kit days is great for the pay packet and also, while busy, kind of easy as I was just in the office for one particular task! It was like working in the last month of mat leave... No one really expects you to do too much so when you do, they're really pleased!

KneeDeepInDaisies Thu 20-Jun-13 22:56:10

Nice to see you back Tiger. I'm happy with any books but agree August sounds great.

Made JO's chicken pie tonight but just with mash and spinach. I thought it was ok but I had mine reheated. DH and DC really enjoyed it. I might put more mustard and Creme fraiche in next time.

ScienceRocks Fri 21-Jun-13 07:28:17

Welcome back tiger!

Did the chicken and corn humble pie from TM last night. Although I have made it before smile I used some roast tomato sauce from the freezer so it was easy to do and it tastes fab.

Pantah630 Fri 21-Jun-13 07:47:44

Hey Tiger, welcome back. Looking forward to August too, I got Dan Lepard on the kindle deal and Fuschia Dunlop on the Book People one so I don't feel so bad buying new books when they're a bargain smile Hairy Bikers Curries is on deal at BP too at the moment.
As an aside I popped into Aldi yesterday and they appear to have American food in, tinned pumpkin, marshmallow fluff?? Huge marshmallows, giant pretzels, etc.. Just in case anyone wants pumpkin pie making ingredients and no Waitrose nearby.

ScienceRocks Fri 21-Jun-13 09:36:41

You lot are a bad influence! I have just bought HB curries and fuchsia Dunlop from the book people too blush

Have wanted to try dan Lepard for a while, so looking forward to August!

glorious Fri 21-Jun-13 09:37:59

That sounds good tigerlily , perhaps I should do some around Christmas. Off topic but I'm hopefully going to be going in for a promotion interview, it'd be cheeky to call that a kit day wouldn't it?!

I agree August sounds fab. Healthy veg in July will balance out the baking smile

ELR Fri 21-Jun-13 09:54:41

Great, looking forward to August too and agree veg in July will balance out the baking in August!

ScienceRocks Fri 21-Jun-13 09:59:30

Oh oh oh! My chipotles are here! Thanks HuevosRancheros thanks

tigerlilygrr Fri 21-Jun-13 10:10:35

Glorious arrange a coffee with a colleague to catch up after interview and then you can definitely call it a kit day! I have no shame!

Wow, the book people are cheap, aren't they? Fuschia Dunlop is £16 on amazon (who may be tax dodgers, but are normally reliably inexpensive, or at least so I thought) and only £8.99 on book people. Plus p&p but I see that's free if I spend more than £25. Another great tip I've got from this thread!

ScienceRocks Fri 21-Jun-13 10:14:18

Tiger, enter afocean at the book people checkout and you'll get another 5 per cent off!

HuevosRancheros Fri 21-Jun-13 13:22:24

(I have just made the most amazing curry from the Hairy Bikers' book, but I won't tell you which one til 1st July)

LeonardoAcropolis Fri 21-Jun-13 13:40:49

That could be all of them, huevos grin The chipotles arrived safe and sound, thank you again flowers

HuevosRancheros Fri 21-Jun-13 14:02:35

Glad the postal system is working, happy cooking! smile

glorious Fri 21-Jun-13 18:20:48

Ooh good idea tigerlily grin

glorious Fri 21-Jun-13 18:21:29

I mean grin


HV I bet it's the butter chicken wink If not, make that one next as it is gorgeous grin

Sorry that was supposed to be to HuevosRacheros

greensnail Fri 21-Jun-13 19:41:23

Chicken pie night! Was very nice. I was quite happy with my usual chicken pie recipe but this one made a nice change and was well received. Now for the all important carrot review, dh thought they were lovely, I thought they were ok, dd2 looked at them slightly suspiciously then ate them, dd1 stuck to her usual raw carrot sticks. Overall I would do the carrots again, we eat a lot of carrots generally so nice to have them slightly differently and they did go well with the pie.
I really liked the peas as well but d h found the amount of mint I put in slightly overpowering so I will reduce that slightly next time.

I'm happy with the book choices for the next two months. Am I the only one actually looking forward to the hfw book?

No green, I am too, but then I like everything (except those carrots) so I'm not sure I countgrin .

Very glad we are going every grain of rice, I bought it and now I'm doing the cookbook club my other books don't get a look in in the meal planning of a month, so, on that book at least, I have not wasted money the other three I bought howevergrin

I can't stand baking though, I'm bad at it, and that's so demoralising, so I won't buy short and sweet, presumably there will be some online, or one of you lovely ladies can pass me a recipe or two in August?

maniacbug Fri 21-Jun-13 20:19:38

Well, that went well. Made TM's red snapper with pineapple tonight, using sea bream instead, and the results were as follows:

DD started crying with a headache within minutes of sitting down so skipped tea and went straight to bed at 6pm;
DS1 got a bone stuck between his teeth;
DS2 (3) declared imperiously 'I only like NOT-COOKED pineapple mummy, I've told you before' hmm
DH and I thought the sauce was really tasty, but he was late for cricket so it barely touched the sides. Not generally a big fan of fruit-with-savoury dishes, so this was outside my comfort zone... not sure I'd do it again but glad I've tried it. I do appreciate this thread making me try things I otherwise might not!

TM's chicken + corn humble pie tomorrow.

Thanks for confirming next couple of months tigerlily... I'm another one excited about curries in July and both Aug books. Every Grain of Rice just arrived from Book People and looks gorgeous; Short and Sweet already one of my favourite baking books. (Various friends coming to stay in Aug = good excuse for cake overload. Not that I need one.)

Good luck with the chipotles, glorious!

snoworneahva Fri 21-Jun-13 20:24:41

Welcome back Tiger.

Very excited to see Chinese on the menu, I have eaten so little Chinese apart from stir fries - really hoping I can get really stuck into learning my way around all those lovely ingredients. So I've bought Every grain of rice - hoping dh doesn't notice another cookbook on my groaning shelves. grin

I'm looking forward to trying the sides in Veg everyday - it's just a bit ordinary as a cookbook...I'm still hoping for a gem in there somewhere - another easy tasty midweek veg dish would nothing to complain about.

I got the Madhur Jaffrey book from the library....her food always seems too simplified - it's an irrational prejudice because someone recommended her Sri Lankan Aubergine curry to me and it's really good - I love South Indian food, simple, bright, fresh fiery flavours. Have ordered the Hairy Bikers curry book from the library - something tells me their gutsy approach will marry well with curries.

Dan Lepard's book will remain a mystery to me as I'm a gluten free but I look forward to hearing about all the lovely goodies that you all create.

maniacbug Fri 21-Jun-13 20:26:58

pregnant I'll be happy to share my favourites when the time comes. As an alternative solution, can you delegate your August baking to anyone else in the house?

HuevosRancheros Fri 21-Jun-13 21:14:47

Pregnant - just in case it is cakes that you fear, thought you should know that Mr Lepard also covers breads, flatbreads, biscuits, pastries (sweet and savoury), caramels and sweets.
Lots online as he writes in the Guardian.

Snow - I'm not gluten- free, but have noticed lots of mentions of gluten- free options in his recipes, so some may be good for you smile

snoworneahva Fri 21-Jun-13 21:31:49

Thanks Huevos - I think I'll order a copy from the library.

HuevosRancheros Sat 22-Jun-13 07:52:30

Hmm, just looked through Short and Sweet, not as many GF recipes as I recalled. There is a white bread recipe, and a shortcrust pastry one. At the beginning of the Biscuits recipe he discusses GF flour, how best to use it and that it suitable for most of the recipes in that chapter. The whole caramels/fudge/sweets section looks OK. I think you are wise to get it from the libraby first smile

HuevosRancheros Sat 22-Jun-13 07:57:22

Catwithflowers - no it wasn't butter chicken! And I can't even find that in the book confused is it the chicken makhani? We're not really fans of big creamy sauces, but I think it could be done without the cream and still be lovely, as the butteryness would come through.

We are veggie, so I look either for veggie recipes or ones I can substitute in quorn or mixed veg

glorious Sun 23-Jun-13 16:05:56

Right, kicked off TM with the horchata drink. I may have overcooked it because it turned to jelly overnight in the fridge! Very nice cinnamony sweet rice starchy jelly though (well I liked it though I can see I'm not selling it well!).

tigerlilygrr Sun 23-Jun-13 18:33:34

I got the hairy bikers curry book on the weekend. Gutsy is the word! The recipes look delicious though. As an FYI you can get it for £12 from the works which is good value for such a thick book with lots of pictures (one upside I have noticed with HB books is that there are more pictures of the food and fewer of the authors staring wistfully into space or seductively toying with a spatula etc...much as I love Nigella / Lorraine et al, I highly approve of this editorial decision).

tigerlilygrr Mon 24-Jun-13 13:16:51

All, new thread for July is here.

Oh I am so behind on June!

tigerlilygrr Mon 24-Jun-13 20:00:44

Ok made pregnant jools' pasta. Did anyone else find it excessively sweet ? Mine was tasty and had a real kick to it thanks to some lethal tiny chillies I had hanging around (I wasn't sure if they were the sort that are really hot, or just a baby version of what I think of as 'normal' chillies, or if in fact all the little ones are fiery!) However I thought it was a touch too sweet for me (and I have a sweet tooth). It may be because I used pork and red onion sausage?

mimolette Mon 24-Jun-13 20:15:19

Hello, can I join in? Just recently discovered this thread and spent the weekend grabbing spare moments to read through the entire 13 pages! Made TM's green rice salad this evening (adapted to what I remembered to buy!) to rave reviews from DH. Fits the bill for quick, easy weeknight supper and is lovely on a summery but chilly evening. Skipped the crispy tortilla chips though as that sounded a bit weird for a rice salad. Going to try the steak burritos tomorrow.

mimolette Mon 24-Jun-13 20:19:10

...paprika paste". (Apols, all thumbs on my phone)

mimolette Mon 24-Jun-13 20:20:19

Ok, that was supposed to say that my tesco sells an own brand chipotle and smoked paprika paste in its "ingredients" range.

tigerlilygrr Mon 24-Jun-13 20:32:46

Hi mimolette happy to have you join us! Just be aware that as the end of June approaches j have made a new thread for July. But as I've only made one of my four recipes this month you and I are level pegging anyway!

glorious Mon 24-Jun-13 21:19:56

Welcome mimolette (cheese fan?!).

My chipotles en adobo are done and they smell amazing smile

tigerlilygrr Mon 24-Jun-13 21:58:10

glorious my DH has taken to making himself a chipotle sandwich ... Just the chili in a slice of supermarket bread. My kilner jar is half empty after just a couple of weeks!

glorious Tue 25-Jun-13 06:19:37

Yum we'll have to try it! Chipotle sandwiches all round. grin

Pantah630 Tue 25-Jun-13 12:24:28

😨 wow you lot must have asbestos mouths, I only stuck my finger in and licked a little and had to run for the milk 😹

The butcher has had a run on pig skin so I've got to wait till next week to try TM Mexican pork scratchings but I will return and let you know if they're an improvement on our bog standard salty ones.

tigerlilygrr Tue 25-Jun-13 12:32:16

pamtah did you write that to show off your emoticon skills? Very impressive! I can't say I recommend chipotle sandwiches (my DH has been working up to them by having chipotles en adobo as a condiment with everything for about three years!) but I don't find it as spicy as everyone else does. We have it with scrambled eggs on good quality brown toast sometimes (just thought we should add avocado)... Delicious!

ShoeWhore Tue 25-Jun-13 12:43:06

Hello can I join in?

I've used the 30min meals book a lot although it usually seems to take 1hr+...

We love pregnant Jools' pasta although I make it with very herby and garlicky sausages from our butchers so that no doubt adds a hefty dose of flavour.

The little individual raspberry and lemon cheesecakes are great, have done them a few times.

Chicken pie was a great success (we liked the lettuce and peas with it too) but took AGES.

There's a recipe for pork and sausages with a creamy sauce and celeriac - really delicious, again took ages and I didn't bother with the pork and just cooked decent butcher's sausages normally.

We also liked the veggie rogan josh with the carrot salad, very tasty but took quite a bit longer than 30 mins.

I find the book hard to follow. But the food is very tasty.

Pantah630 Tue 25-Jun-13 12:45:55

Of course and reading how to spell asbestos off the brake pad boxes grin

I can see it in scrambled eggs, especially with cherry toms and lots of coriander. Will have as a late snack just for me, don't think DH will like it though, his taste buds are even more sensitive than mine. Want to try the green rice tonight but not sure what to put with it in super quick time. We're taking the Cubs on a Nature Hike tonight so I need to cook a quick and easy dinner before it gets too late after. I have three types of mince in my fridge, the lamb and pork were to be used to make some koupepia, Cypriot dolmades, they take quite a bit longer to do so not tonight. I might rustle up a chilli and do rice with it rather than just tortilla chips and sour cream. I have an hour window between getting in from work and leaving for the hike, should be enough time hopefully.

karmakameleon Tue 25-Jun-13 21:59:29

Hello all. Been really enjoying catching up on this thread and seeing what you have all been making. I've had so little time to cook this month and even less time to post.

I haven't managed to make anything from Jamie which is a shame as I do really like the book just don't have much need to make meals with all the sides and puddings etc when it's just the two of us.

From the TM book I've actually made loads and really enjoyed it. Here's the list

- chipotle en adobo - fantastic but really hot and I like it spicy, think it was cos I didn't wash many seeds off

- roast chipotle salsa - nice change from my normal salsa, will make again

- guacamole - very similar to my normal recipe but still good

- smoky grilled corn cob - fab, I don't think i'll have corn on the cob any other way now and not only because I have a kilo of chipotle en adobo to use up

- green rice - another good recipe, easy, tasty and def one to have again

- chorizo salad with butternut squash - slightly disappointing, just not very exciting, someone above suggested roasting the chorizo with the veg and I think that would be an improvement

- spicy bird tacos - ok, possibly would have it again if we had leftover chicken but not overly fussed about them

- one pot bacon, beans and pumpkin - ok but again not overwhelmed

- spicy spatchcock salad - another ok dish

- churros - amazing! we had them with the Mexican hot chocolate for brunch which was a bit rich for first thing in the morning but really very good.

Overall I'm a bit torn on the book. I've made some really good things but also had a few very average dishes, although no total disasters. I've had my copy for years but hadn't gotten round to cooking from it. Am I glad I tried it? Yes, very much. Would I buy a copy if I didn't already have one? No, it doesn't feel like a stand out book. Has anything I made come close to eating at Wahaca? Maybe the churros but otherwise the recipes in the book don't come close. But then Wahaca is amazing and I wouldn't really expect to be able to recreate the food at home.

mimolette Tue 25-Jun-13 22:33:54

Had the steak burritos tonight, which were nice enough, though not sure I really see what the difference is from fajitas.
My DH has also been dipping into the chipotle jar as a sandwich spread, though he has it with cheddar. (And yes, glorious, I love cheese!)

ScienceRocks Tue 25-Jun-13 23:09:57

Green chilli and corn soup tonight from TM. Very nice. I used yogurt as a garnish instead of sour cream, and dipped in leftover corn tortillas I had crisped up in the oven. Easy too. I'll do it again.

tigerlilygrr Tue 25-Jun-13 23:16:23

karma it's a bit of a weekend project but I think the standout recipe is the chicken mole with ground nuts (almonds?), green olives, chorizo etc. such rich complex flavours. I honestly think it's as good as wahaca. If you have time do try it (TM evangelist)

karmakameleon Wed 26-Jun-13 10:34:04

Thanks tiger I'll take a look at it and possibly make it at the weekend. Doesn't sound like the kind of thing we would normally eat but the whole point of the thread is to try new things so I'll give it a go if there's time on Sunday!

tigerlilygrr Wed 26-Jun-13 10:49:03

karma this is the recipe that really ignited my ice for Mexican food which is now my all time favourite, so please forgive me gushing, but it's one of those recipes where you can't imagine what it will taste like until you've tried it. Or at least I found it so. I am not a massive fan of olives even but every mouthful was a revelation. To the point where my daughter's second birthday party was entirely themed around Mexican food so I could cook it again, which was rather a surprise to some of the guests!

tigerlilygrr Wed 26-Jun-13 10:49:41

Ice should read love. How did that happen?

glorious Wed 26-Jun-13 21:23:41

Tonight we had the chicken adobado (I think! Now stuck upstairs feeding DD) with green rice and pink pickled onions.

The chicken was tasty though next time I'd want to make more of a sauce with the marinade because the flavour could have been stronger. We both really liked the green rice, it had a nice level of interest which perked it up without overwhelming. The onions were a good accompaniment but I've made too many.

I did also blend some spatula into the rice blush Added woody notes...

maniacbug Wed 26-Jun-13 22:21:10

Made my final Jamie recipe tonight: the chicken pie, but with normal onion instead of spring onion and sweetcorn instead of mushrooms because for the first time in all of eternity there were none in the veg box. I can rustle up a chicken pie without a recipe but thought I'd stick with him in the spirit of the thread, and it went down well with DCs. Mustard added a nice depth to the sauce.
Just had a reminder from the library that it's due back on Saturday, and though I'm glad I've cooked from it... on balance I don't think I'll miss it.
The only thing I think I'll make again is the salsa verde, which was so delicious the recipe is now on a Post-It on the side of the fridge.

DH and I just booked in a date night, where we will make at least 5 things from TM, including prawn coctel (which we are obviously only allowed to pronounce like cartoon Mexican banditos), 2 different taco fillings, green rice, one of the salsas, one of the salads and a lot of a few tamarind margaritas. Thought we might as well finish the month with a blowout (and he works away Mon-Fri, so I don't get much chance to go crazy with the spicy stuff during the week).

So that's me done for June. I have enjoyed reading about everyone's experiences + look forward to seeing you all in July!

maniacbug Wed 26-Jun-13 22:30:24

Oh, and forgot to post last week after TM's 'humble pie' - it looked like student slop when dished up, but actually tasted really good. The blended corn topping was sweet and surprisingly delicious, a lovely contrast to the feta and tomato sauce. Good with a ton of salad + a really lemony dressing.
PS if anyone's tempted, it might be worth doing the roasted tomato sauce in advance rather than simultaneously, which involved Jamie-esque rinsing of blender mid-recipe.

ScienceRocks Wed 26-Jun-13 22:49:51

Maniac, your feast sounds epic. Good luck!

I agree with the comment about making the roasted tomato sauce in advance. In fact, so many of my favourite recipes from TM involve using the sauce (enchiladas and humble pie spring to mind) that I make it in vast quantities and freeze it in portions so I can make a quick dinner when needed.

Can I just ask those who have made the chipotles - what did you put it in afterwards? No kilner jars here, so I was wondering if I could freeze it in small quantities, so whether I could just stick it in lunch boxes. Views appreciated!

maniacbug Wed 26-Jun-13 23:06:30

Science I have mine in various shapes and sizes of recycled jars, also frozen in old marg tubs in the freezer. Haven't needed to defrost any yet so no idea how it will survive the experience!
Think DCs might get a bit of a shock if I put it in their lunch boxes grin

snoworneahva Thu 27-Jun-13 07:17:40

Coming to the end of the month I find myself more impressed by Jamie Oliver's 30 min meals - we didn't follow the exhausting run around the kitchen for 30 mins but we picked up some good recipes - loved the Kimchee slaw, the sea bass and the mustard chicken....still have my sights on the piri piri. The Mexican book I have yet to fully embrace - loved the chipotle obsession, already make a guacamole similar to her recipe, tried to make the pork scratchings but couldn't get pig skin, will try again today...I haven't given up on her......I'm just not feeling the love yet!

glorious Thu 27-Jun-13 20:49:20

Mmm, chorizo, potato and cheese quesadillas. Evil. Mostly fat. Tasty. grin

Pantah630 Thu 27-Jun-13 21:04:15

They sound nice glorious, will have to try.

Pork scratchings brined and drained, now drying in the fridge smile

greensnail Thu 27-Jun-13 21:13:08

Did I post since I did the green rice? Hope I'm not repeating myself but we enjoyed it although not such a hit as the red rice. For some reason my dds insisted on putting tomato ketchup on theirs. No idea why as they're not big ketchup eaters but they insisted it was lovely like that!

Well be doing the sea bass and pancetta on Saturday and then I'm done for June.

maniacbug Thu 27-Jun-13 21:56:13

Darn it, why did I have to go and flick through Jamie again just before I take it back to the library? Spotted the fish tagine and the prawn red curry meal, which I must have skimmed over before.
Is either worth renewing the book for? Might just photocopy for future ref.

Pantah those pork scratchings sound like a real mission, and one I could be persuaded to embark on... please report back!

snoworneahva Thu 27-Jun-13 22:21:31

Managed to get hold of some pig skin today - will start them off tomorrow - plan to have pork scratchings with guacamole and tequila on Saturday evening, sitting in the sun.....if it arrives!

ScienceRocks Thu 27-Jun-13 22:33:04

Tortilla soup tonight. I've made it loads of times before but it's always fab. The surplus will go in the freezer smile

I did the chorizo, potato and cheese qursidllas last night, but substituted half the potato with parboiled, diced carrot. They were delicious with and fiery salsa for me and dh, a ketchup for the girls. Easy and delicious (I won't mention the fat)

glorious Fri 28-Jun-13 11:23:29

They're good leftover for breakfast too!

I've made the chicken and chirizo with ground almond mole today. It took a long time with poaching the chicken and frying everything one by one, but it was nice. I didn't add olives and separated a portion, and added chipotle paste at the end so I could give the girls a non spicy alternative, so perhaps, based on tigers recommendation this is where I went wrong. It may need to be made spicy from the off. ( but my Dc really really enjoyed their non spicy mole)

I'm not a fan of poached meat generally, and found the chicken a bit sloppy for me, plus a whole chicken in one recipe makes me cringe. Especially when there's chirizo added as well! But I know most don't balk quite like me at over using meat.

I might end up doing it again properly as I rate tigers opinion and think I probably went wrong.

I have just put some black beans in to soak for cooking tomorrow, I really a Mexican feel going, I'm not ready to stop cooking. (This is how you all felt after Jerusalemgrin )

ScienceRocks Fri 28-Jun-13 19:20:48

Pregnant, do extra black beans, they freeze really well, either cooked as they are or refried. I am loving having little tubs if refried beans in the freezer smile

greensnail Sat 29-Jun-13 20:02:07

Did the jo sea bass with pancetta this evening. Not a success at all, probablY more down to the state of mind of my family than anything else. My three year old was desperate for her fish and got in the way while I was cooking to the extent that she ended up sitting in the bowl containing the dressing for the vegetables hmm. When she eventually got her fish she choked on it and got so upset that she refuses to try any more. Dd1 got upset by the general noise and refused hers too. Dh enjoyed his sea bass but I don't think either of us were blown away by the side dishes and the flavours seemed to overpower the fish a bit for us. The pudding was ok, but nothing special. Not sure I'll bother again, or maybe just do the sea bass part but not the sides.

That's me finished for June, see you all in July!

My beans are still soaking after a manic day. But I've popped back to say the leftover chicken and chorizo mole is delicious! I love it today!

tigerlilygrr Sat 29-Jun-13 23:13:10

pregnant I reckon no olives for the mole would be fine as they are more of a punchy garnish than an integral flavour iykwim (also it's a pain to get just 50g of olives, if I remember rightly!) But I think adding the chipotle early on night make the difference. Perhaps that's why your flavours have developed to the full today? I am so glad you like it by the way!

tigerlilygrr Sun 30-Jun-13 08:31:35

Oh also I think next time I make it rather than poaching the chicken i am going to slow cook it instead (in a slow cooker). I think it will be the same sort of texture. And quite a bit easier!

Waswondering Sun 30-Jun-13 08:59:47

Late to this thread .... But can I highly recommend Jamie's duck salad in 30MM? It is dh and my 'go to' date night recipe. Quick, easy and delicious (I don't bother with the pudding).

Pantah630 Sun 30-Jun-13 21:49:02

Pork scratchings in the oven on the second this space smile

Pantah630 Mon 01-Jul-13 20:41:24

Sorry TM but not impressed with the scratchings, a lot of faff for them to turn out the same as if I'd just roasted them at high temperature from the start. I followed the timings to the letter when cooking but they didn't swell up as expected. On the plus side, the brine smelt lovely and the scratching had little fat so not too much of a guilty pleasure.

PartTimeDomesticGoddess Mon 01-Jul-13 21:34:33

I haven't managed much in June (mostly due to DIY), but I did make the JO spinach and feta filo pie yesterday, which was nice. I think making it in the frying pan and cooking on a v low heat for 10 mins (induction v low, if I was doing it on my old gas hob, I would prob do 5-7 mins), but my frying pan was a bit awkward and only just fitted in the oven handle to the back (glad I thought to try it before the oven was hot!) I did roasted new potatoes with it too though, and it says serves 4-6 but 4 adults and 2 smalls had it for lunch and I'm glad we also had the potatoes. We had it with the tomato and cucumber salads from the book - cucumber salad was OK (and I like balsamic, so possibly didn't put enough oil in). Tomato salad was nice, but a bit of a faff for me as my big blender doesn't do well at all with small quantities, but there was a bit too much for my tiny wet and dry grinder which did it, but leaked a bit. Vivid green dressing, but very nice (only used garlic sparingly though as raw).
And that reminded me of my other issue with JO in general - although I'm much better than I used to be - I'm not always good with recipes that tell you to add a 'glug'. I feel that a glug is a very subjective measure indeed!
However, I have liked some of the recipes from JO, and still have more that I will get round to doing and we will be having the Asian salmon with noodle broth again tomorrow night, do try that if you haven't already

Mmm did the cooking black beans and refried beans yesterday- finally. The cooking beans were lovely, though I though I felt a lot of work- this feeling was quashed when I refried them- such depth of flavour and beautifully spiced. We loved them, had them with hfw flatbreads, with red onion, extra coriander and chilli garnishes. Lovely.

ScienceRocks Fri 05-Jul-13 21:07:08

Of sure anyone is looking at this anymore, but I feel I should report that I did TM enchiladas last night (not for the first time, but such an easy dinner if you have roasted tomato sauce in the freezer as I often do). I added mushrooms to the mix as I didn't have much spinach, and used creme fraiche instead of sour cream, and it was still very good.

Am doing some of the picnic stuff from JO this weekend.

These threads just keep on giving as far as I am concerned smile

Still reading and cooking Science smile

Cantdothisagain Sat 06-Jul-13 07:18:47

Me too! Anyone tried the chilli con carne? Am going to make that this weekend.

ScienceRocks Sat 06-Jul-13 07:32:55

I did the TM chilli. Found it very filling and rich (I didn't eat beef for years and now find it a bit much). DH loved it though.

Cantdothisagain Sat 06-Jul-13 07:58:28

Thanks Science. I am fine with beef but to be honest with chilli it's the accompaniments I like best...

Pantah630 Sat 06-Jul-13 09:18:34

I haven't tried the chilli yet, we do a HB one as a staple. Shall give it a go next time. Yes to accompaniments, like lots of sour cream, coriander and the lime nachos Doritos do. I don't bother with rice any more for chilli as we have it so often with other stuff.
Shall be doing the refried beans again for sure, well worth the effort involved.

Cantdothisagain Sat 06-Jul-13 09:50:05

Thanks Pantah, will try the refried beans too!

glorious Sat 06-Jul-13 11:14:42

I'm still going on TM too but there'll be a week's break while I'm on holiday (will probably do some of this month's recipes then though as we're self catering).

ScienceRocks Sat 06-Jul-13 14:16:21

Quite proud of my sausage rolls from JO!

Cantdothisagain Sat 06-Jul-13 22:14:07

Sausage rolls, mmm! Will look those up.

Did Jamie's tray bake fish, which was delicious. Easy too, although I had to turn the fish fillets to cook them in the prescribed time. I didn't bother with the banoffee pie but I loved the salsa verde and the fish, yum.

Cantdothisagain Tue 09-Jul-13 21:36:20

Suspect I may be the only one left here but I wasn't that keen on the chilli from TM. It was a bit rich for me. By no means horrible, but I prefer the chilli recipes I usually use. Shame!

ScienceRocks Wed 10-Jul-13 11:40:19

I'm still here can't and thought the same as you about the chilli. A rare TM fail for me.

ZuleikaJambiere Thu 25-Jul-13 18:26:14

I know its very late, but as I've finally finished cooking from Jamie, I thought I should add my comments onto the thread. I've returned the book to the library this week (having renewed it twice), and although I won't be buying it because there are plenty of things I find irritating about it, I have copied many of the recipes.

All in all, I've made the following:
- Asparagus lasagne with tomato salad and frozen mango yogurt. I don't think I'll make the lasagne again, but I've already made the tomato salad several times and I've noted the frozen yogurt recipe as I'd like to try it with other fruits. I did this against the clock, and it took a whole lot longer than 30 minutes!

- Steak sarnie (with non of the extras), delicious and one I'll be trying again, perfect for Friday night tea with DH.

- Chicken satay with all the trimmings (no pudding though). Another one I'd like to do again, it was about on the limit of what I can take chilli-wise, but had enough other flavours to get me through it.

- Smoked salmon, beetroot with cottage cheese and potato salad (but no rye bread or homemade butter). Another one I loved, and has convinced to try beetroot more often.

- Chocolate mousse - yum.

- Chocolate ganache - yum.

- The chocolate brownies were the only disappointment, too cake-like and gooey enough. But with custard made a fine pudding.

- And I've copied the beef hash to try, when the weather is appropriate!

So that's me done with the 30 minute meals, it's been fun

tigerlilygrr Fri 26-Jul-13 16:40:59

Have just come back to this thread to see what you posted zuleika! Sounds good. I fancy the beef hash too.

goodasitgets Sat 27-Jul-13 18:35:32

Slightly cheeky grin
But I have a LOT of old cookery books, sold some on amazon but the rest are in boxes. If anyone has a particular request for anything I am happy to send anything for postage (as they are just sat here)

Trills Mon 19-Aug-13 09:05:42

I realise it's August, but I had a Thomasina Miers blitz at the weekend and made

Chipotles en adobo (now in a jar in my fridge)
Roast tomato salsa (hint - if you dry-fry a whole chilli the skin will split with a BANG)
Guacamole to her recipe (very coriander-y, I think I prefer it my way)
Spicy bird tacos (nice but oddly sweet-tasting)

and tonight I am making the bacon bean and pumpkin stew thingy, although I decided that pumpkin can be replaced with butternut squash, and butternut squash can be replaced with sweet potato, so it's actually a bacon, bean, and sweet potato stew, with the green rice.

Cantdothisagain Mon 19-Aug-13 19:30:29

Trills, I too made the chipotles en adobe, as well as chipotle mayo and roast tomato salsa. And steak burritos. All good but the smoky roasted corn was really really good. Love that book!

Plus3 Sat 07-Sep-13 14:38:07

I love reading these threads, and as a result have bought Every Grain of Rice, Plenty and Short and Sweet. I am hopelessly out of sync with the months, but it has inspired me to cook more from the books I love reading!

So from JO I have done the Piri Piri chicken (for friends) - went down amazingly well. I used 2 green chillies instead of 2 bird's eye chilles, and it was warm but not overwhelmingly spicy. The potatoes were gorgeous & I did the frangipane tart instead. It is simply the easiest, most lovely pudding I have ever made. A big success smile

Have also tried Jule's pregnant pasta - DH & I liked it but the DC didn't like the fennel seeds. The chicken pie went well, and I did the satay chicken & noodles just for DH & I and really enjoyed it.

The rib eye steak with Dan Dan noodles was delicious, but was basically a deconstructed stir fry.

Overall I really liked 30 minute meals- I don't rush and find the recipes still work with a bit of common sense

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now