I already have a draft post that’s been half-written for nearly a month now. The problem with that is that there’s too much to describe and I think I’m a little too pedantic, which makes it more work than it really should be.
However, I had a lovely time in London over the weekend and thought I’d share a little of what I ate.
First, I made figs and goats cheese as a quick starter for lunch on Saturday. I believe figs are in season now, and the figs we bought certainly lived up to that, subtly sweet and juicy. I picked up some goats cheese from the butcher down the road – it’s a gorgeous sweet, cheese with a rind and creamy outer layer similar to camembert, with a firmer, almost crumbly centre. After slicing the figs open with a cross-cut (see this for a proper written description), I wedged a small piece of the amazing goats cheese in the centre. Then I baked them at about 180-200°C for 5 to 8 minutes, just enough to melt the cheese and allow the figs to warm up a bit. It’s a classic pairing and I certainly understood why after the first, warm burst of sweet and salty melted cheese in my mouth as I bit into the fig.
Continue reading Figs and goat cheese
I finally remembered to buy some yeast. I’ve been reading bread recipes online and was debating which to try. In the end the decision was made for me.
My housemate came back to uni with about twelve packs of mature cheddar cheese and another two of orange burger cheese with black pepper from McDonalds, where he worked over Christmas. The cheese was expiring, and they couldn’t use it despite its apparent freshness, so it was all destined for the bin. Fortunately it found a new home in our fridge:
Due to the glut of cheese in the house I started looking up cheese bread recipes instead of sweet ones. I eventually decided that this recipe from The Hungry Mouse was simple, yet impressive enough. However I still needed to make the pizza dough and I decided not to use The Hungry Mouse’s dough recipe purely because of the yeast measurements, as she uses a tablespoon. The yeast I bought comes in 7 g sachets and I didn’t want to convert things. I soon tracked down Gordon Ramsey’s pizza recipe (on the BBC Good Food website) that uses 7 g yeast sachets.
Both recipes were very easy to follow and the results were delicious. The cheese was melty on the inside and crispy on the outside where the oven had dried it. The bread was soft and fluffy. It is a prime example of comfort food, all in a little roll that fits in the palm of my hand. I ate a couple cheese rolls with leftover bolognese sauce from dinner, and if I closed my eyes, and relied on flavour alone, I could’ve been eating a pizza. Perfection.
A few changes I made to the recipes:
I halved the original quantities of the dough recipe and this worked out just right for the cheese roll. I also used all-purpose flour as I didn’t have any bread flour.
As for the actual cheese rolls, I didn’t have any parmesan cheese so I omitted that and just made sure that the other cheeses covered the dough well.
The following pictures are of the finished rolls:
Pasta with a cheesy sauce – there is not much in this meal that would endear me to proponents of healthy eating but it is very high up on my list of favourite comfort food.
First I made a roux (flour, butter and milk), to which I added plenty of cheddar cheese. Then I simply tossed some quick cook pasta in the cheesy goodness, topped it with freshly ground black pepper and voila! A perfect, quick dinner for the cold night ahead.