Chestnut Roast

Happy sunday, folks! I hope you’re having a good weekend and recovering nicely from your festive feast but, if you are still in search of more season’s eatings, I do have one last late christmas recipe for you. A variation on a vegan nut roast – Made to share with my vegetarian family – that makes use of both pasilla peppers and winter chestnuts.

RoastDone

And, meat free as it may be, those chestnuts certainly aren’t umami free. They come through with a slight meaty richness that few vegan foods possess and, if you aren’t sworn off the animal products, pair beautifully with a blend of gravy and Chilli Scrumptious’s Java Hot.

Because yes, delicious and moist as this one might be, on the inside, all nut roasts benefit from a little extra sauce on top.

Here’s how I made it.

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Chipotle Snaps

Hey folks, do you like brandy? I don’t.

And yet, for some reason, it’s almost everywhere at christmas time. In puddings, cream, butter and biscuits, to name just a few of its applications. So, today, I’m going to be taking a common brandy recipe and taking the brandy out of it.

ChipotleSnaps

I’m going to be making some chipotle snaps, with the help of Burning Desire FoodsSyrup.

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Harissa – Hot & Hotter

Happy tuesday again, everyone. Today, we’re going to be carrying on our african theme, from the weekend’s jollof recipe, but we’re going to be moving up north for a more tunisian treat.

HarissaPair

In this week’s review post, I’m going to be taking a crack at some artisan harissa, from Burning Desire Foods and Carringtons, to see how it compares to the simpler, more traditional sort that I once stuffed peppers with.

It’s quite easy to tell which is going to be closer, though. The free sample that I got from Burning Desire uses the same blend of red bell peppers and serenades that I’ve used in my own harissa attempts, while Carringtons does away with anything so mild, in favour of a ghost, scorpion and reaper mix.

It’s pretty obvious that they’re going for heat over tradition but how will that same mellow pepper mix that we saw in 📽️ Mad Dog’s Gold Edition 📽️ impact the flavour of a harissa paste?

I can’t quite picture it but I’m certainly excited. For both of today’s products, since Burning Desire Foods have a long history of quality that we’ve seen many times on this site.

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Party Rice

Hey folks, it’s the last weekend of the month and it’s time to party. By which I mean it’s time to replicate a dish that I discovered at an afro-caribbean birthday barbecue.

That’s right, if you couldn’t tell from the title, this week’s recipe is the mildly smoked “party rice” version of west africa’s traditional “jollof”. A heavily spiced rice dish made for sharing, that can be the side for your main meal but, more often, acts as the ballast alongside a tonne of fried plantain, jerk chicken and coleslaw. To name just a few of its common accompaniments.

It can be served warm or cold at just about any time of the day and, while not exactly hot, it carries a wonderful tomato, thyme and scotch bonnet taste that makes it all but impossible to mistake its native region.

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Loquat Topped

And yes, I’m posting on sunday, as well, everyone. I’m keeping busy this week.

For this particular recipe, though, it’s not just me that you have to thank. Its inspiration comes from Hot Ones and my own comments section.

You see, just over a week ago, I was watching Kristen Stuart eat wings and, despite putting on a good performance, I didn’t feel like I could relate to her like other guests. Until, that is, she hit wing seven and the big food question dropped.

As it turns out, Kristen is a forager. And not a ramson, elderflower and bilberry forager, like me. She forages for loquats.

Now, if you’ve read my review of Ibiza Chilli Co’s Magnificent 7, you’ll know that I’ve got a lot of love for the citrussy, slightly mango and apricot-like, loquat. So, naturally, I got excited to try her crumble.

Unfortunately, though, loquat season ended several months ago. I couldn’t get the fruit fresh and nowhere sells it dried or frozen. All I could get my hands on was another bottle of that glorious spanish hot sauce, with which to try out Glempsto’s crazy-sounding loquat drizzle cake suggestion.

Now, I took a few liberties with the recipe, as you’ll see in a moment. I wanted to highlight the fruit’s citrus qualities and the sauce’s spices, not just replicate a lemon drizzle. And, while I wasn’t sure quite what to expect, I absolutely adore the resulting sweet and tangy cupcakes.

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Toasty Treacle Tarts

Welcome back to winter, everyone. As we head back into the UK’s native time zone, it’s time for another weekend recipe but, I’m going to be honest with you, this one was a little bit rushed.

Between being ill and all my foreign friends returning to the country (quite possibly related occurrences), I’ve had very little time to perfect this month’s warming pudding and I may well come back to do so later. Yet I’m not exactly unhappy with how it turned out.

TreacleTart

These treacle tarts are sweet, caramel-y and filled with the autumnal taste of toasted habanero fragments. Not exactly a pumpkin-like squash but a distinctive, strong overtone of savoury orange fruit all the same. And a high

3.5/10

Heat

once the namesake treacle flavour fades away.

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Stir-Fried Spuds

Sup peeps. Earlier this week, we looked at some szechuan-style peanuts from Brighton Hot Stuff that I highly recommended using in a stir-fry.

I stand by that recommendation but, today, I’m going to add a caveat. They went really well into both noodle and rice-based stir-fries and they’d be just as good in a veg-heavy one but there’s a lesser known type of traditional stir-fry that I don’t see them working in. Potato Stir-fry.

Yep, you read that right. There’s a real chinese dish where they slice potatoes into ultra-fine strips and cook them like noodles. Albeit a touch more al denté.

I’m not going to lie, it’s super weird the first time you try it. It’s completely unlike any western form of spud. Yet keep going, for a few mouthfuls, and you’ll soon come to love it.

I discovered this dish at Xi’an Impressions, in london, on route to Challock Chilli Fest. I picked up a taste for it there that turned into a craving, during my recent brighton trip, but, unfortunately, I never made it back.

Instead, I’ve had to learn to cook shredded potato stir-fry myself. And now I’m going to teach you.

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Mexican Buffalo Corn

Howdy folks, today’s recipe is another one of my crazy fusion foods. It’s mexican and its american but it’s definitely not tex mex.

What it is is an invention all my own, cobbled together from random pub grub and then remade with slightly better ingredients back home.

It’s a quick, tasty, somewhat messy appetiser that I like to call “Mexican Buffalo Corn” and I really want to share it with you. But first, let’s clear up a few potential misconceptions:

First, it’s not mexican. It uses mexican hot sauce and mexican herbs for a mexican-style flavour but the closest actual mexican dish is a spicy, cheese-laden corn one known as “elotes”. This isn’t that.

Second, this dish is vegetarian. It doesn’t contain actual buffalo but rather a buffalo-style wing sauce, made from the above-mentioned mexican hot sauce. My own twist on a creamy and buttery, yet really rather tangy, american classic. Using corn on the cob where you’d normally find chicken.

And, finally, this is not my main recipe of the month. It’s a mini one that uses the black label Valentina sauce, even if small adjustments will allow you to use anything with a similar mexican flavour. So expect another recipe next week.

For now, though, let’s get started.

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High-Class Crisps

Hey folks! It’s been a long time since 💀my last restaurant review💀 but, today, I’m coming to you from all the way out in london’s trendy soho district to feature the craziest establishment that I’ve ever seen.

HipShop

HipChips – A sit down or take away restaurant dedicated to providing the most gourmet version imaginable of a dish that I call “chips and dips”. But no, there aren’t any wide fries here. Every slice of potato is a wafer-thin crisp with a tonne of crunch.

It’s not usually a complex or well-balanced meal but it’s a darn good snack and I’m ever so curious to see what they’ve done to improve it. To spice it up, if you will.

And alright, they’ve provided a free lunch to entice me in but, honestly, I doubt I could have stayed away anyway. It’s just such a wild idea for an eatery!

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Beardy Butter

Hello again, everyone, and welcome back to the last of my Gingerbeard reviews. At least for now, since I’ll probably be picking up something new when I go back for more of their fabulous piccalilli.

Let’s not get ahead of ourselves too early, though. That product may have been a real winner but today’s was always the one that I was most looking forward to. And the one that sounded most representative of the company, themselves.

This Gingerbread Satay may be another of their many collaborations but it’s the only one to give their namesake spice and company logo a starring role.

GingerbreadSatay

Plus, are those almonds chasing down the gingerbread man? Could this perhaps be a little more indian and a tad less thai than its “satay” name implies?

Well, the label’s light-green, bamboo-patterned background does say asian but I’m intrigued, either way, and, as always, I intend to get my answers in the form of a taste test.

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