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Buttery onion rice and jazzed-up beans on toast – what to eat if you’re within the consolation zone | Meals

Melek Erdal’s jazzed-up beans on toast (pictured above)

Every time I’ve mates spherical, it doesn’t matter what time, we make breakfasty meals. It’s a bit like breaking the foundations, but in addition feels comforting. It is a recipe that got here out of lockdown, essentially the most intense half the place we have been barely allowed to exit.

We shopped about each three weeks. The constraints have been a tremendous time for creativity. There’s a saying in Center East households that it’s a blessing to make use of every part you’ve got, that you simply’re bringing fortune into your private home. Someday, we didn’t have a lot left and my housemate on the time added spices she preferred and onions, ginger and garlic to baked beans. She stated it was fairly a Somali factor to do. She thought it was nothing. I assumed it was wonderful.

I made my model, including Turkish peppers and my very own type of spices – and we simply saved making it for one another backwards and forwards, jazzing up beans. It was comforting, however so good – and good for you.

It’s not meant to be fancy. The flavour of baked beans, the sweetness and the consistency, actually make the recipe – you couldn’t do that as effectively with every other type of bean. I’ve by no means felt extra British than once I cook dinner beans on toast for individuals. My housemate’s household is from Somalia and mine is Kurdish, and this recipe is what British means to us. Baked beans have infiltrated us, however we’ve infiltrated them again.

Serves 1
coriander seeds 1 tsp
cumin seeds 2 tsp
turmeric ½ tsp
aleppo chilli flakes a pinch
olive oil 4 tbsp
crimson onion 1
garlic 2 cloves
crimson chilli ½
ginger 10g
salt and pepper
baked beans ½ x 400g tin
free-range natural egg 1, from the happiest hen you realize
bread of your selection (I like rye for this recipe)
recent coriander a handful
lemon or lime to serve (optionally available)

Fry all of the spices within the olive oil on a medium warmth for 1 minute.

Finely chop the crimson onion, garlic, recent chilli and ginger and add it to the spices. Fry till softened and caramelised (about 10 minutes).

Add the baked beans, stir completely and depart to simmer for an extra 5 minutes on a low warmth.

Whereas your beans are simmering, fry the egg in a separate pan and toast your bread.

Serve all collectively and high with some recent coriander and possibly a wedge of lemon or lime.

Melek Erdal is a meals author and an everyday visitor on Radio 4’s The Kitchen Cupboard

Georgina Hayden’s strapatsada

Georgina Hayden’s strapatsada.
Georgina Hayden’s strapatsada. {Photograph}: Romas Foord/The Observer

Rising up, this type of dish would all the time be on the facet in each of my grandmothers’ kitchens, and it’s what my mum would make on a Saturday afternoon, or for a lazy weeknight when there wasn’t a lot in the home. She would make it with tinned tomatoes, as a result of they’re versatile and low-cost, and she or he and my sister like it. I by no means actually did till I received older and made it with recent tomatoes, which I’ve on my counter even within the depths of winter.

I grate and cook dinner them down until they’re candy, including a number of flavours – garlic, paprika, a little bit of chilli, relying on who I’m cooking it for – earlier than rippling in eggs proper on the finish. It doesn’t sound like a lot nevertheless it’s wonderful. It’s additionally actually versatile. It is a recipe for 4, nevertheless it scales up or down rather well – divide the tomatoes and eggs and play free with the remainder as you want. Acquired no onion, or an excessive amount of onion? High quality. Add a tablespoon of tomato puree for richness; crumble over feta as a substitute of halloumi.

I make it rapidly for my daughters after faculty, but in addition will do it as a part of a lazy brunch unfold if mates or household come spherical on the weekend. You’ll be able to eat it sizzling or at room temperature. Strapatsada is the Greek phrase – my Cypriot household would name this ntomata me avga, which actually simply means tomatoes with egg. It’s a very easy strategy to cook dinner any vegetable you’ve got – as a substitute of the tomato, attempt asparagus within the spring, or courgette in the summertime.

Serves 4
ripe tomatoes 800g
olive oil 2 tbsp
butter a big knob
onion 1, peeled and finely chopped
garlic 2 cloves, peeled and finely chopped
candy smoked paprika an enormous pinch
caster sugar 1 tsp
crimson wine vinegar ½ tbsp
dried oregano 1 tsp
sea salt and freshly floor black pepper
free-range eggs 8 giant
halloumi 75g
toast or pitta bread to serve

Grate the tomatoes on a rough grater, discarding the skins. Warmth the oil and butter in a big non-stick frying pan over a medium-low warmth and add the onion and garlic. Fry for 10 minutes, till it begins to melt and turn into sticky.

Stir within the paprika, sugar, vinegar and many of the dried oregano (reserve a big pinch). Fry for an additional minute, then add the chopped or grated tomatoes, and season effectively with salt and pepper. Gently deliver to the boil, scale back the warmth just a bit, then depart to cook dinner for about quarter-hour. Many of the liquid must have evaporated and the tomatoes ought to begin to gently caramelise.

Crack the eggs right into a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Beat after which pour into the pan with the tomatoes. Decrease the warmth a bit extra and scramble the eggs and tomatoes collectively. Maintain stirring and cooking over a low warmth. When the eggs are half cooked, take away from the warmth. Maintain stirring off the warmth till the eggs are creamy and silky. Sprinkle with the remaining oregano and coarsely grate over the halloumi. Serve with toast or pitta.

Georgina Hayden is a meals author and broadcaster. Her newest e book is Nistisima (Bloomsbury, £26)

Georgia Levy’s lemon, parmesan and rocket pasta

Georgia Levy’s lemon, parmesan and rocket pasta.
Georgia Levy’s lemon, parmesan and rocket pasta. {Photograph}: Romas Foord/The Observer

It is a dish for a type of days the place you’ve been very busy, or very pressured, otherwise you simply want the consolation of pasta, however you don’t need to spend ages standing over your sauce, stirring, shopping for mince, ready on your tomatoes to cook dinner down. You want pasta and also you want it now. You need the rocket in there for the crunch and to have a vegetable ingredient, a contact of inexperienced.

You’ll be able to play fairly free with the quantities – I typically add an additional handful of parmesan if it’s been a very dangerous day. And you’ll adapt it to no matter you’ve got round – chopped asparagus can go in with the garlic, or broccoli, maybe grated courgette. Actually, something you’ve got in your fridge will be thrown in there. I typically have ricotta in mine, so a few tablespoons stirred in on the finish provides creaminess, however not in a sickly manner.

There’s a type of magic that occurs if you mix oil, lemon juice and pasta water – it wraps around the pasta to deliver all the weather collectively. It’s one thing you are able to do with substances via the seasons, so that you don’t have that separation between pasta and sauce. The key is to let every part meet over a low warmth – weird issues occur to parmesan if it will get too sizzling.

When writing recipes, I all the time discover it arduous to specify how a lot pasta to cook dinner, as a result of if it’s for me, I most likely double it. I can positively smash three-quarters of a bag. Pasta is all the time there for you.

Serves 1
fusilli 100-125g or every other pasta
olive oil 2 tbsp
garlic 1 small clove, finely sliced
dried chilli flakes a pinch, plus additional to serve
lemon juice a squeeze
parmesan or pecorino 25g, finely grated
rocket 1 x 60g bag, roughly chopped

Deliver a pan of salted water to the boil and cook dinner your pasta to simply shy of al dente.

In the meantime, heat the oil in a large frying pan (that may maintain the pasta) over a medium-low warmth and gently fry the garlic till it begins to really feel sticky and is barely golden on the perimeters. Add the chilli flakes, wait a second for them to heat via, then squeeze within the lemon juice.

Add 1-2 tablespoons of pasta cooking water and half the cheese – you need it finely grated so it simply melts away. Ensuring the warmth isn’t too excessive, stir till the cheese has simply melted and you’ve got a sauce. Take off the warmth if the pasta isn’t prepared but.

As quickly because the pasta is cooked, drain it, reserving a cup of the cooking liquid. Flip the warmth as much as medium and add the pasta to the sauce, stirring continuously for 2-3 minutes till each piece is coated. It must be good and moist, add extra cooking water if not.

Take off the warmth and fold within the remaining cheese and rocket. Don’t be shocked by the quantity of rocket, it cooks down dramatically and provides a terrific peppery flavour. Season with pepper (and salt if it wants it) and punctiliously fold till the cheese has melted. I prefer it when the rocket nonetheless has a little bit of crunch. Switch to plates, sprinkle with a bit additional chilli and serve.

Georgia Levy is a meals author and recipe developer. Her newest e book is Let’s Do Lunch (Pavillion, £16.99)

Itamar Srulovich’s onion rice

Itamar Srulovich’s onion rice.
Itamar Srulovich’s onion rice. {Photograph}: Romas Foord/The Observer

My go-to easy consolation meal is Nigella’s Marmite pasta. However my spouse doesn’t like it a lot. So, after we’re collectively, we make onion rice, and its by-product, tuna rice. It’s so easy, however essentially the most scrumptious factor.

My stepfather used to make it each Friday. Friday evening is an enormous deal in Israel. In old-school households, you’re not allowed to cook dinner on Saturdays, so on Friday, till about 2pm everyone cooks the meals for the weekend. Although my household was not spiritual, we nonetheless cooked for a Friday evening dinner. Onion rice was non-negotiable – it might be the very first thing we ate for a late lunch on Friday.

Onion rice just isn’t a facet, it’s a dish by itself, and it’s a ceremony – a really pure second. It’s mainly onions cooked in butter, or margarine is even higher. You must use hen inventory cubes of the most affordable selection – the brilliant yellow ones. It’s the one recipe the place I’d use no different spice than black pepper. That is the start line. Typically we’ll riff on it, and fold in tuna on the finish. This model known as soiled onion rice. That’s the trinity.

You’ll be able to add different issues, however there are guidelines. You’ll be able to add carrot and celery to the onion however they have to be chopped the identical measurement. On uncommon events tinned tomatoes can go in, however it is advisable change the water ratio, which is why we don’t typically do it. Tomato puree is typically a welcome addition. Spinach or a parmesan rind, or recent cheese with the tuna. Typically you don’t know what is true, however you’ll know if it’s mistaken. The considered including spice makes me recoil in my coronary heart. There’s something very comforting about having meals guidelines.

Serves 2
hen inventory cubes 2 (home made inventory will produce inferior outcomes)
butter or vegetable oil 1 tbsp
onions 2 giant, chopped however not too high-quality
lengthy grain rice 210g (1 x 250ml cup)

Boil a kettle, measure 375ml of water and dissolve the inventory cubes.

In a big, shallow pan, warmth the fats and onion on a low warmth and saute till delicate and translucent – don’t let it color.

Add the rice to the pan and saute till all of the grains are good and shiny. Add your inventory and a superb shake of black pepper. Style – totally different manufacturers of inventory have totally different ranges of salt; the liquid must be powerfully salty however not unpleasantly so. If it isn’t, add a pinch of salt.

Deliver to the boil. As soon as boiling, stir the rice, decrease the warmth to a delicate simmer and canopy the pan with a decent becoming lid for precisely 10 minutes – put a timer on.

When the timer beeps, take off the warmth however don’t take away the lid – set one other 10 minutes on the timer and depart to steam with the lid on.

After 10 minutes, take away the lid – the rice must be totally cooked and aromatic, the onion delicate, translucent and jelly-like, forming a hoop across the fringe of the pot. Gently stir it in with the rice and serve.

Onion rice is a second of easy pleasure. Get pleasure from it as such.

Itamar Srulovich is a chef and co-founder of Honey & Co

Tarunima Sinha’s crumpet and uttapam love butter

Tarunima Sinha’s crumpet and uttapam love butter.
Tarunima Sinha’s crumpet and uttapam love butter. {Photograph}: Romas Foord/The Observer

We all the time have crumpets at house. My husband loves them, however I discover them missing in flavour. Over time, I began including chilli to them, after which sooner or later I assumed I’d attempt dipping one in yoghurt, which we additionally all the time have, and steaming it.

It was a bit like an uttapam, a south Indian pancake historically made with fermented rice and lentil batter. It has a crispy base and a delicate spongy texture on high, and will get loaded with onions, tomatoes and chillies.

Making uttapam correctly is a time-consuming course of, and also you want correct information in any other case it’s a catastrophe. Although I like the rhythm of that elaborate course of, this recipe satisfies a right away craving, a cheerful experiment utilizing staples in my kitchen.

Nigella seeds are important, and I all the time have curry leaves as I develop them. You should use coconut milk or yoghurt in case you don’t eat dairy. And when you’ve got leftover mashed potato, you possibly can add some spices and use it to high the uttapam-crumpet for dosa vibes.

You understand if you purchase an ingredient for one dish after which it simply sits round? I had some shichimi togarashi, a Japanese spice mix with sesame seeds and chilli, within the cabinet and so I began utilizing it on plenty of issues, together with this. Weirdly, it tastes a bit south Indian to me.

Similar to crumpets, uttapam loves butter – and so do I, so it’s good to make a spiced butter to complete it. I most likely eat this each 10 days, once I crave one thing with Indian flavours however don’t wish to faff round.

Serves 1
greek yoghurt 200g
salt ¼ tsp
lemon juice 1 tbsp
crumpets 2
crimson onion ½ giant, finely chopped
tomato ½ giant, finely chopped (deseed in case you choose)
carrot ½, coarsely grated
skinny Indian inexperienced chillies 1-2, finely chopped (optionally available)
curry leaves 2-3 recent sprigs, or recent coriander leaves (though the flavours are totally different)
butter 1 tbsp
nigella seeds 1 tbsp
shichimi togarashi 1-2 tbsp (optionally available)

For the spice butter
unsalted butter 25g
curry leaves 2-3 recent sprigs, or recent coriander leaves
dried crimson entire chillies 2-3

The spiced butter is optionally available, however I like to recommend it because it provides a bit extra flavour to the completed dish. In a small pan, add the butter, curry leaves and entire crimson chillies. Place on very low warmth, and as soon as the butter is melted, about 5 minutes, swap off the warmth. Maintain apart and let it infuse, and within the meantime put together the crumpets.

Put the yoghurt in a medium-sized bowl and provides it a really fast whisk with a fork or a small whisk. Add the salt and lemon juice, combine and maintain apart.

Put the onion, tomato, carrot, inexperienced chillies and curry or coriander leaves in a bowl, combine collectively then maintain apart .

Place a heavy non-stick or cast-iron frying pan on low warmth. Add the 1 tablespoon of butter, let it soften and coat the bottom of the pan. Brush each side of the crumpet with the melted butter and place the darker plain facet of the crumpets within the buttered pan. Don’t overcrowd the pan and maintain the warmth very low.

Spoon 2 tablespoons of the ready yoghurt on high of every crumpet, spreading a thick layer on the floor. Pile 2 tablespoons of the onion combine on every crumpet, gently urgent a bit, and sprinkle generously with nigella seeds. Cowl with a lid and let it cook dinner for five minutes on medium-low warmth. After 5 minutes, take away the lid and let it cook dinner for an extra 5 minutes on low warmth until the bottom is crisp.

Slide it out fastidiously on to a plate and drizzle a spoonful of the spiced butter on the onions. Sprinkle over some shichimi togarashi if utilizing, and eat heat.

Tarunima Sinha is a meals author and runs My Little Cake Tin



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