Sunday, 3 January 2010

New year, new blog...

I'm not one for new year's resolutions, but I've been thinking for some time about starting a blog and what better excuse than the start of a new year? This blog will be about food: what's happening in my kitchen; photos and recipes; notable meals out; maybe the occasional book review. I'm aiming (it's not a resolution, remember) for at least one post a week.

After the excesses of the holidays, it has been a frugal start to the year. I returned yesterday from visiting family in Northumberland to a flat that had been empty for 10 days. Waitrose won't be delivering until tomorrow, so I had to make do with what I could find in the freezer and cupboards.

I had saved some tomato sauce (leftover from pizza) in the freezer, and this formed the basis for last night's supper.  The sauce defrosts over a gentle heat while water boils on the stove for pasta. Just before the pasta is done, add chilli flakes, anchovies, olives and capers. Toss with the cooked pasta, grated parmesan, and a good grind of black pepper, and you have that store-cupboard standby: pasta puttanesca.

While I was rummaging in the freezer, I found a tub of pumpkin soup and a quarter loaf of sourdough: lunch today. I also dug out minced pork (leftover from a stuffed chicken leg dish) and breadcrumbs. Dinner tonight will be pork meatballs with spaghetti. I usually make these with fresh thyme, following a recipe from
Nigel Slater's "Kitchen Diaries" but the thyme has not taken kindly to the cold weather. Instead, I'll flavour them with rosemary, fennel seeds and lemon (the solitary lemon found in the bottom of the fridge).

The fridge also harboured a block of butter past its use by date. Rather than see it go to waste, this was put to good use in a batch of dark chocolate cookies. Sometimes, making do is not so bad.

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