Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Secrets and Pies

Spring is here, although my daffodils aren't up.  That's because they're still in a bag outside the back door.  But when the sun shines it really does feel like winter is done. We had a cooked breakfast the other Sunday.  Daughter home for the weekend, after a tough week hunting for digs, so it definitely was a case of breakfast in bed for her.  Just the usual, but both she and her dad finished the meal and asked the same question:  How did you do those tomatoes?  So here is my secret for doing comfort tomatoes:

Chop 6 spring onions, fry in a fair amount of butter and a little oil. Chop six on-the-vine tomatoes (if you haven't got on-the-vine, you can't make this dish - only joking!) add to the onions, and then add salt and pepper, a teaspoon of tomato puree, a teaspoon of brown sugar - maybe a little less - and a good tablespoon of balsamic vinegar, and lots of love.  Bubble gently for a bit.  Serve on toast with bacon and Duchy eggs.

Another winner is these beans.  I got this idea from watching Jamie, and he picked it up in Italy, so it's true Italian beans, I suppose.  Soak white kidney beans overnight - although last night I brought them to the boil, let them stand for an hour, fresh water, boiled again, and they were absolutely whatever.  Fill them up with cold water, add two or three (or more) cloves of garlic, unpeeled, a tomato or two or three.  Boil gently for around an hour - kidney beans collapse all of a sudden, but you want them well cooked.  Drain the beans but leave a giant mug of water in the bottom of the pan (secret no 1)  then peel the tomatoes and garlic, mash all together and add back to the beans    (no 2)  add a huge amount of olive oil, pepper and salt,  mix.  I bubbled it away for a few more minutes, served with sausages, maybe the fried tomatoes - there is no better way to do a pot of beans.

And I suppose to justify my title, here is something I made for the kids when they were younger.  The  nieces were here, and they grandly named it:  Auntie Jenny's Magnificent Sweetcorn Pie, and I think we did it a few times - and I admit, I rather liked the name.  Really it's sweetcorn fritters with extra onion, and everyone loves sweetcorn fritters.  Fry lots of onions well,  add two tins of creamed sweetcorn, and fresh-cooked corn off two cobs, or a large tin of whole sweetcorn kernels.  Mix with two or three eggs,  around half a cup of flour - maybe more,  plenty salt and pepper, parsley if you have, pour into a large quiche dish and sprinkle with cheese.  Bake for 20 minutes or so.  A giant slab with a little salad will keep kids happy - if a little grandiose on names.

1 comment:

  1. planning to make the bean dish - I love beans! I confess I've asked Veryan to buy me a slow cooker. What is your thoughts on these? I fear it will make everything rather bland boiled-in-a-pot kind of taste.