Saturday, 31 August 2019

Some things in my kitchen

I am off on holiday soon, so this In My Kitchen blog post is a day early. 

We have friends flying over from America, once they are here - we will be taking a road trip.
So In My Kitchen, we have more homegrown tomatoes from the greenhouse, they have not been as big this year, but still very sweet and tasty.  Here is a link to some tomato recipe inspiration.
Some Sweet Paprika and Smoked Paprika. 
This Nimbu Pani translates as Salty Water.  I bought it to see if it stacked up to the authentic Nimbu Pani my Nanny made from scratch when i was a child, as well as Aunties.  It was not, still it was okay and D quite liked it.  I have promised to make him the more authentic and traditional Nimbu Pani one day, as he loves citrus sharp lemon flavoured things 

Monday, 26 August 2019

Simply Tomatoes

There's so much happening this long Bank Holiday weekend: Pride, Carnival season,  Poetry in the Park and lots of other community events in and around Wales, but we haven't ventured far from home this weekend, other than the garden centre to pick up some compost. We have spent most of the weekend carrying out joyful tasks such as tidying up both the house and garden, which was beginning to look a bit overgrown in places. It looks much better now, but still so much to do.  
 Anyway, onto my most recent harvest of vibrant colourful tomatoes from the greenhouse.

Whilst your here, here's a little peek in the greenhouse. 
Red tomatoes next to green tomatoes.
Abundant vines
I've made a number of dishes such as Arrabiata and vegan Puttanesca with fresh tomatoes, I usually make these with tinned tomatoes.  I have also made Tomato Pilau and Lebanese Tomato and Bean Stew.  

If you are looking for tomato recipe inspiration, please also check out 's a link to some tomato recipe inspiration.  
We still have plenty more tomatoes to come.  But some of the tomato plants have become unruly, look at the state of this (below).  It really does look a bit like an overgrown jungle or a tangled mess in the greenhouse this year.  
I'm letting regular readers, especially those that come through via Harvest Monday that, I won't be able to participate in Harvest Monday next week, as we have some some friends coming from America and then we are off on holiday for a week or so.  So hopefully, I will be able to join the following week, but this is my contribution for this weekPlease go by and check out  Happy Acres who hosts Harvest Monday every week and showcases some impressive homegrown fruit and vegetables.

Friday, 23 August 2019

Tomato Pilau with Coconut and Cashew Nuts

I have had Tarla Dalal Tomato Rice bookmarked for a little while, to make use of my homegrown tomatoes, but once again I was tempted by a tomato recipe that I came across in the Guardian's food section.  Tarla Dalal was a famous Indian chef, cookbook author, food writer and host of cookery shows.  her first cookbook 'The Pleasures of Vegetarian Cooking' was published in 1974.  Since then Tarla Dalal wrote over 100 cookbooks, of which I own some, but like I said I was tempted by another modern recipe. The recipe in question this time is for Summer Pilau with Tomato, Coconut and Cashew Nuts and once again comes from Meera Sodha, the food is well presented and captured wonderfully by the photographs .  The recipes are also accessible, which is good for any home cook.  Some of you will remember that recently I made her Lebanese Green Beans and Vermicelli Rice , so I knew this was going to be a good one to make and eat too.
I stuck to Meera Sodha's recipe for the Tomato Pilau, the only two things that were different.  I used dried curry leaves as I am not easily able to find fresh where I live; and secondly, this was due to my impatience - I did not brown the onions well, hence why my Pilau is not as golden, but let me tell you it was still delicious, moreso because of my homegrown tomatoes!  

D loved it and said I should make this for our American guests when they come in September.  Hopefully we will still have tomatoes coming from the greenhouse, in which case I shall be making it again.  

Meera suggests serving it with a fresh green salad.  I told my husband this and he rolled his eyes and suggested that I should have thrown in some of our homegrown green beans to the Pilau.  Instead he had his with a dollop of mango chutney, I think it was a good decision. If I have tempted you once again, then please check out the full recipe

Other Pilau Recipes you may like
Broad Beans Pilau with Mint
 Butter Bean and Kale Curried Turmeric  Rice
Cauliflower Pilau
Fenugreek and Radish Rice
Rainbow Carrot Rice Pilau
Savoury Jerusalem Artichoke Rice
Savoy Cabbage and Lentil Rice
Wild Garlic and peas Rice

Wednesday, 21 August 2019

Meera Sodha's Lebanese Tomato and Bean and Stew

Well homegrown tasty tomatoes keep on coming and some of you may have seem my link to some of my homemade tomato recipes, but I have also been seeking inspiration elsewhere and it came recently whilst browsing The Guardian's New Vegan food and drink section.  
The recipe for Lebanese Green Beans and Vermicelli Rice comes from Meera Sodha. It not only gave me the opportunity to use my homegrown tomatoes which are plentiful, but also green beans and runner beans that are coming by the bucket load.  
I did tweak the recipe just a little as I did not have vermicelli to hand, so used small star shaped pasta that I use in soups in place of the vermicelli for the rice.  I also kept some tomatoes back and added them in towards the end mostly for aesthetic reasons, and would you not agree it look darn delicious?! and it really was - really, really flavourful.  I served it with a generous dollop of labneh doused in za'atar.

I f I have tempted you, then please check out the full recipe by Meera Sodha's Lebanese Green Beans and Vermicelli Rice from her new cookbook East  which may go on my Birthday or Christmas wish list (not that I need more cookbooks), otherwise I'd be more than happy to borrow it from the library.

Monday, 19 August 2019

Tumbling Plums and Unruly Beans

So another week and another harvest.

This week I am sharing plums from the garden. 
Those of you who came by last week will remember me mentioning that part of our plum tree was damaged in the high winds, taking a load of branches laden with unripe plums with it. I had left the branch on the side hoping the plums still clinging on it would ripen, well they did.  These are those plums and they have already been used in baking into Cinnamon Plum Cake, its one I make every year and more than once.  
I also wanted to show the difference between our plums and the neighbours plums.  The large glossy ones belong to my neighbour. Its the first year my neighbours plum tree has produced.
As well as our own plums, we are being gifted by plums from the neighbours tree too, as half the tree is leaning on our side of the garden.
I thought I'd share the flowered artichokes with you too.  See how pretty they are, blooming sharp and prickly too!
Half way through last week, we also harvested globe courgettes, a variety of beans in all sizes and of course plums.  
With the green beans I made Sarah Beatties Peixinhos da horta which translates as 'little fish from the kitchen garden' 

I also adapted Sarah Beatties Green Bean Korma recipe to include my homegrown round courgettes and runner beans.  
Finally from my husbands greenhouse, a colourful selection of  tomatoes.  Here's a link to some tomato recipe inspiration.  

I am sharing my homegrown fruit and vegetables with Dave at Happy Acres who hosts Harvest Monday every week and I'd like to add he does a grand job at it too. 

Sunday, 18 August 2019

Bakers Dozen: Best Tomato Recipes

We have been growing our own tomatoes for nearly fifteen years, whether it was on our window sill at home, our greenhouse at the allotment plot  in Scotland or here, in our back garden in Wales, the passion for trying to grow some of our own, continues.   

This year the tomatoes are not as plentiful, but they are still tasty and bit like the courgettes, every year I wonder what am I going to do with all these tomatoes, other than making the usual soups , chilli red tomato chutneys, sauces and lasagne.  So if you are looking for some inspiration and are looking for something different than you have come to the right place.
First up is Rosemary Elliot's vegan Bloody Mary Jelly 
Next we have an Oven Baked Za'atar Tomato and Potato Frittata
Something light to snack on Pan Con Tomate - Catalan Tomato Bread
Something light to eat for lunch Red Pepper and  HarissaTomato Potatoes , the vegan  with VPud Black Pudding is optional. 
How about this Red Tomato, Fenugreek, Paneer Coconut Curry
Something to impressive your dinner guests with - Savoury Cherry Tomato Clafoutis
Savoury  Cherry Tomato, Paprika Mozzarella Muffins
Slow Cooked Balsamic Tomatoes and Butter Beans 
Sweet and Savoury Tomato Spring Rolls
Tomato Farinata with roasted aubergines and black olives
Tomato, Potato and Rosemary Bake
Vietnamese Tofu in Tomato and Black Pepper Sauce
Green Tomato Chutney

Do you have a favourite tomato recipe that you make year on year, please let me know.

I am also sharing 12 tomato recipes from my co-host of Eat Your Greens Veg Hog, as well as linking to the Guardian celebrity chef and food writer tomato recipes. 
The Guardian Part 1
The Guardian Part 2
The Guardian Part 3
The Guardian Part 4