Monday, 5 March 2012

Lamb rice pudding?

This week I've actually done a fair bit of cooking on weekdays. I havent been going to the gym as much since I sprained my ankle a few weeks back, which means I've been eating more exciting food than tuna, brown rice and vegetables (as yummy as it is).
I bought a pack of flatbreads last week, and decided to make houmous and falafels, both of which are very easy to make (especially if you own a food processor) and very tasty.

Friday this week I decided to make a lamb biryani. I got a lovely piece of lamb shoulder from the market, and set about putting together a delicious dinner.
Oh, did I mention I forgot to wash the rice, and stirred the stock in. Argh!
I made a wonderful dhal to go alongside, just using some shallot, garam masala, chillil, garlic and ginger. I added some tomatoes and creamed coconut too, and was really looking forward to a delcious ricey, lentily dinner. I opened the oven and brought out my lovely big pan, and took the lid off to reveal....rice pudding?!
The rice was VERY stodgy. It was essentially an indian, lamb rice pudding. If I was being flattering I'd call it a risotto, but lets call a spade a spade.

It tasted lovely but the damage was done. I'd fried up some little shallots and chilli's and almonds to add the its beauty, but was left feeling distincly like you cant polish a turd. Anyway....

Saturday we went out for dinner again, this time to Prezzo. Prezzo is a relatively nice italian chain. It does decent pizza, pasta, etc. This branch has just opened recently in Nottingham, but there was already one in a different part of the city (about 5 minutes walk). My partner really likes the food here, and seeing as the other never seems to have a table free on a Saturday, we tried this one instead.
We got a table straight away, service was friendly and efficient, and the food was nice. The menu doesnt change too often, so we always end up fighting over who has the prawns for starter, but there are a good range of mains, and the desserts (though obviously from the same place as some other restaurants, seeing as the honeycomb cheesecake is the same one served at Ask) are lovely. I ate every bit of every course. The most entertaining part was also that we were sat across from the most miserable woman. Even her husband seemed unimpressed with her rudeness towards the staff.

Sunday held more success than Friday on the cooking front. I made another loaf of Mrs B's fabulous Soda bread, and used some blackened old bananas to make a delicious banana loaf. I used a recipe from Nigella's Kitchen, and modified it a bit. It consisted of

4 black bananas, mashed. Then add
150g sugar, 2 eggs ad 100g butter.
In a seperate bowl, mix 100g wholemeal flour and 75g of ground almonds. Add 100g dessicated coconut and some chocolate chips, and around a teaspoon of baking powder.

Then fold the dry ingredients into the wet, pour into a loaf tin, and bake for about 40-50 minutes on 180 degrees. I covered the top with a little foil as the over had previously been up to 230 for the bread.

The cake was wonderful. Really moist, and made me feel much better about the baking disaster that was the birthday cake (which Ive frozen and am sure will make a lovely trifle once soaked in some limoncello).

I was in a bit of a piggish mood yesterday, and spent the afternoon on the sofa after my partner had returned home, watching Charlie and the chocolate factory with some curried popcorn. I love home popped corn, as you can add whatever flavourings you like.

Dinner was a simple affair,another Nigella recipe, for pasta in a creamy truffle oil sauce. Egg, cream, truffle oil, parmesan, pepper mixed and poured onto some cooked spagetti. I added some peas to make it look less white. It was SWIMMING in cream, maybe too much even for Nigella,but it was lovely with a nice crisp glass of white wine.

So another mixed bag this weekend. Lets hope its onwards and up from here :)

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