Tenderloin pork filet with creamy mushrooms

Ingredients for 4 people

1 lb pork tenderloin filet, cut into slices about 1.5 inch thick
250 gr. chestnut mushrooms, sliced
300 ml. single cream
1 big red onion, chopped
6 spring onions, cut into 1 inch pieces
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 sprig of fresh thyme, roughly chopped
1 sprig of fresh oregano, roughly chopped
1 tsp. golden sugar
1 tsp. ketchup
>1 small tomato
¼ pint of vegetable stock
½ bunch of fresh flat parsley, finely chopped
1 bay leaf crumbled into pieces
olive oil, salt, pepper, chilli salt
some chives for decoration

    Put some olive oil, herbs, garlic, sugar, salt and pepper into a bowl and mix together. Add the pork, red onion and spring onions and marinate for about half an hour.

    First fry the pork in a deep pan until golden brown on both sides. This only takes a few minutes. Take out the pork, wrap into tinfoil and keep warm in the oven. Drain the onion, garlic and herbs (from the oil) and fry them in the same pan as the pork. When the onions are soft add the mushrooms. Once the mushrooms are lightly fried add the vegetable stock and cook on a high heat for a few minutes. Then turn to low heat and slowly stir in the single cream. Season with salt, freshly ground pepper, ketchup and some chilli salt (optional). Leave to simmer until it the sauce thickens up a bit.

    Take the tinfoil parcel out of the oven and empty the pork and meat juices into the mushroom sauce, then add the chopped parsley and give it a good stir.

    I served the pork with potato wedges and pointy cabbage.


    Pimm’s o’clock

    Spring has arrived in England and as soon as the sun comes out the Brits will do two things: drink Pimm’s and have a BBQ.
    Traditional Pimm’s No. 1 recipe

    Mix 1 part Pimm’s No. 1 with three parts chilled lemonade, add some mint, cucumber, orange and strawberry. For a jug use 200ml of Pimm’s and just fill the jug with lemonade and add the rest of the ingredients. Ice cubes as well!

    A brownie to die for

    Picture courtesy of
    I keep these brownies in the fridge for unexpected dinner guests. They are the best bought ones I have ever eaten. And they are quite versatile. A couple of days ago I had my friend H. over for dinner and surprised her and my other half with this dessert:
    Warm Brownie with whipped cream and raspberries

    Ingredients for 4 people

    4 brownies
    1/2 pint of whipping cream
    200gr frozen raspberrie
    juice of a quarter of lemon
    2-3 tbsp. brown sugar
    1 piece of dark chocolate for grating over the dessert

    Put the frozen raspberries into a small sauce pan, add the lemon juice and sugar and gently warm the berries. Whip the cream until it is stiff. Warm up the brownies in either the microwave or in your oven. Put some of the warm berries onto each plate, add a generous dollop of whipped cream, sit the brownie on top of it and grate some chocolate over it. Voila!

    Roast Chicken Thighs and Potatoes with Lemon and Rosemary

    Lemon Rosemary Chicken Originally uploaded by jcarwash31.

    This is such an easy dish, you basically throw everything into one big pot and roast it in the oven.
    Ingredients for 4 people:
    • 6 large potatoes, peeled and halved
    • 1 lemon, quartered
    • 1 pack fresh rosemary
    • Generous pinch of chili salt
    • 200ml white wine
    • 8 fresh chicken thighs
    • Saltfreshly ground black pepper
    • 4 tbsp. olive oil
    • 1 tbsp. runny honey
    • juice of one lemon
    • 150ml double cream
    • 2 tsp. powdered vegetable stock
    • 1 tsp. dried thyme
    • potato or corn flour to thicken gravy if needed

    Preheat the oven to 200°C, gas mark 6. Pre-boil the potatoes for about 8 minutes so they are still slightly undercooked. In the meantime mix the olive oil, honey, lemon juice, chili salt and pepper together and marinate the chicken thighs in it.

    Place the potatoes in the roasting tin and tuck the lemon pieces in between. Place the rosemary sprigs between the potatoes, then season and pour the wine over.

    Arrange the chicken thighs, skin-side up, on top of the potatoes. Cook for good 45 minutes or until the potatoes are tender and the chicken is thoroughly cooked, make sure the juices run clear when you stick a fork into the chicken.

    Take the chicken and potatoes out and pour the sauce with the lemon quarters and rosemary through a sieve into a pot, bring to boil, then add the double cream and whisk everything together. Season with the vegetable stock, thyme and some more black pepper.

    I served green asparagus with it.

    Frannie’s chicken

    At least that’s how my friend Sandy G. calls it. I know it’s not the most colourful plate, rather colour coordinated and I would have never taken a picture of it had it not been for my other half who said, maybe people can see how nice it tasted 😉

    Ingredients for 4 people

    1 medium sized chicken
    2 leeks cut into inch size pieces
    4 carrots, cut 2 into bigger pieces and 2 into smaller ones
    1 parsnip, finely chopped
    ¼ celeriac root. finely chopped
    2 cloves of garlic, peeled
    5 peppercorns
    1 bay leaf
    1 ½ pints of vegetable or chicken stock
    1 red chili
    salt, pepper, paprika

    Rub salt and pepper into the chicken and sprinkle with paprika. Place it into the middle of a roasting pan and add the chopped vegetables, peppercorns, bay leaf and garlic. Pour the stock around and place the roasting pan onto the middle shelf in the oven, gas mark 5-6 for an hour. The chicken is ready when you can slightly turn the leg and clear juices run out.

    For the gravy, I mash all the finely chopped vegetables and the stock through a funnel sieve, season to your own liking and cook for good ten minutes on the stove on the biggest flame to reduce it slightly. If you want your gravy thicker you can use corn or potato flour for this (put 1 tbsp. flour into a cup, add some cold water, whisk and then stir it into the hot gravy).

    I serve roast potatoes with it.

    Carrot, ginger & coconut soup

    Whenever I heard carrot soup I used to be like “uh, thanks but no thanks” … for some reason the word baby food came to mind. But then I tried this recipe and have never looked back! This soup takes no time to make and you can have it as hot and spicy as you like it.

    Ingredients for 4 people (easily feeds 6 though)
    750 gr. carrots
    1 piece of fresh ginger about a finger long
    2 medium sized onions
    3 tbsp. olive oil
    750 ml vegetable stock
    1 fresh mango
    ½ bunch of spring onions
    1 red chili
    1 can of unsweetened coconut milk
    1 lime
    salt for seasoning
    ½ bunch chives

    Peel the carrots and dice them. Peel ginger and the onions and chop both finely. Slightly sweat the onions, ginger and carrots in the olive oil, then add the vegetable stock and let simmer for about 10 minutes. In the meantime cut the flesh off the mango and cube it. Cut the chili into fine rings and do the same with the spring onions. Use a handheld blender to blend the carrot/onion/ginger soup. Add the coconut milk and season with the juice of one lime and some salt. I sometimes omit the salt and use fish sauce instead. Add the cubed mango flesh, the spring onions and the red chili. If you want more body to the soup you can add cooked king prawns (that’s what I did yesterday). Finally with a pair of scissors cut the chives and sprinkle over the soup (which I forgot in the picture above!)  

    Serve with either fresh baguette or a crusty country loaf.

    Easy zucchini

    Ingredients for 4 people

    4 or 5 baby zucchini (cut into small cubes)
    1 onion (cut into small cubes)
    3 garlic cloves (finely chopped or crushed)
    2 table spoons dried rosemary
    1 lemon
    ½ pint of vegetable stock
    a pinch of dried paprika
    parmesan freshly grated
    freshly chopped parsley
    spaghetti noodles

    Heat some oliveoil in a pan and lightly brown the rosemary. Then add the zucchini and once they are brownish add the onions and as soon as the onions are soft add the garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Add the juice of one lemon and some of the vegetable stock (depending on how much sauce you want to have) and give all a good stir. In the meantime cook the pasta al dente.
    Add parmesan, some dried paprika and sprinkle with chopped parsley. Enjoy!

    Food…. glorious food!

    I’ve played with the idea of having a separate blog just for food for some while and have finally come around to setting one up.
    And thanks to Paul I. I didn’t have to think very long about the title for my food blog… Paul once thanked me for the “frantastic food” I’ve cooked (which was for my sister’s birthday last year!) and voila, there’s your title!
    Here’s the birthday menu I cooked:

    Nectarine, prosciutto & mozzarella salad

    Ingredients for 4 people

    1 bag (100gr) of continental salad
    1 bag (50gr) wild rocket
    4 ripe nectarines cut into eights
    2 buffalo mozzarella (torn into small pieces)
    8 slices of San Danielle ham torn into pieces

    For the dressing

    4 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
    4 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
    1 tsp. sweet mustard
    1 tsp. whole grain mustard
    ¼ pint warm vegetable broth (easily made with a stock cube)
    garlic salt
    freshly ground pepper

    You can either divide the salad, ham, mozzarella and nectarines onto four plates or just put it all onto one big plate for everyone to share.

    Mix the dressing together and drizzle over the salad.

    The combination of sweet nectarines, creamy mozzarella, peppery rocket, slightly salty ham and the sharpness of the balsamico vinegar is simply divine.

    Ravioli with lemon cream sauce (Main course)

    Ingredients for 4 people

    2 x 250gr pack of ravioli (with whatever filling you fancy)
    1 (250gr) pack of vine cocktail tomatoes (ideally two long sprigs cut into half)
    250gr brown mushrooms
    1 (50gr) bag of wild rocket
    8 slices of parma ham
    olive oil
    grated fresh Parmesan
    garlic salt and black pepper
    for the lemon cream sauce:
    284 ml single cream
    juice of 1 lemon
    ½ tsp. powdered vegetable stock
    1 knob of butter
    garlic salt and black pepper

    Put the mushrooms and four sprigs of vine tomatoes on a baking tray, slosh some olive oil over it and some freshly ground black pepper. Place in oven (pre-heated gas mark 6-7) to slowly roast.

    Put water on for the ravioli, they usually only take about 2-3 minutes to cook.

    In a small sauce pan melt some butter, add the powdered stock and the juice of the lemon, stir together and slowly add the single cream while stirring. The lemon juice will thicken the cream, if the sauce is too sour, add a bit of sugar. If it tastes too creamy add some garlic salt or a bit more vegetable stock, you really need to taste it yourself… mine always tastes different everytime I cook this dish!

    Remember to check on your mushrooms and tomatoes in the oven! Turn the mushrooms around so both sides get brown and be careful with the tomatoes so they won’t come off their sprig.

    Cook the ravioli according to package instructions.

    To serve just generously put some rocket salad onto each plate, then some tortellini and then some of parma ham slices (I rip them apart into small strips and use two slices per plate). Add some more tortellini and on top the rest of the parma ham. Spoon over the lemon cream, throw some of the mushrooms on and then sit one sprig of the roasted vine tomatoes on top. Last but not least add some grated Parmesan cheese and freshly ground pepper. Serve with some fresh baguette.

    Eton mess a la me! (Dessert)

    Ingredients for 4 people

    1 pint of whipping cream
    6 meringue nests
    1 tsp. sugar
    one basket of strawberries
    one basket of raspberries
    1 pack of fresh pomegranate
    Icing sugar for dusting

    Use half of the pomegranate to squeeze through a sieve to collect the juices. Clean the strawberries and cut them into pieces. Marinate them in the pomegranate juice with the sugar. Add the raspberries to it.

    Whip the cream and crumble the meringue nests into it. Then add half of the berries and carefully fold them into the cream.

    Spoon into four dessert bowls and decorate with the rest of the berries and some of the pomegranate seeds. Dust with some icing sugar.

    A take-on of Nigella Lawson’s express recipe.