Sunday, October 25, 2015

The 5 best green tomato recipes

It's the time of year when anyone who grows tomatoes might have some green ones left on the plant, with no chance now of ripening. So I thought I'd put my favourite recipes in one place for anyone wondering what to do with green tomatoes. And not a jar of chutney in sight...

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Green tomato and lentil curry

Here's a recipe for anyone who has unripe green tomatoes left on their tomato plants, and doesn't fancy making chutney.
And if you don't have green tomatoes, it's just as good with red ones. Or you could swap the tomatoes for spinach, or cauliflower, or whatever vegetable takes your fancy.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Spanish vegetable stew

Here's another autumn dish - filling and delicious, but with a few flavours of summer in there. And it's packed with vegetables. Aubergines seem to be cheap and abundant at the moment, and this is one of my favourite ways to use them. The other good thing about this dish is that it doesn't require much preparation, just a bit of time in the oven while you get on with something else.

This is based roughly on a recipe from the Eagle in Farringdon, which was arguably the first London gastropub back in the early 1990s. I think I have been making this recipe, on and off, for the last 15 years or so.

I've called it a stew but it's also hovering near the salad zone, especially if you eat it at room temperature. I slightly prefer it hot but either will be pretty good.


Serves 4

Two red peppers
Two aubergines
Two courgettes
Two to four potatoes (use an all-purpose or floury potato, not new - two if they are jacket potato size, three or four if they are smaller)
Two to four onions, unpeeled (as with the potatoes, depends on size)
1 bunch fresh basil, roughly chopped
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil


Put the whole onions, aubergines, potates and peppers in a roasting tin and cook them for 30 minutes (check them after 25, but the potatoes and onions may need longer) or until they are all soft.

Slice the courgettes into medium rounds, coat them in 1 tbsp of the olive oil and cook them in a separate tray for about 25 minutes or until soft but not burned. Take out any vegetables which are in danger of burning and set them aside while the rest finish cooking. 

As soon as the vegtables are cool enough to handle, discard the aubergine and pepper stems, the pepper seeds, and peel and trim the onions. Cut everything into rough chunks (I sometimes find it easier to do this with a pair of scissors than a knife).

Mix together with the remaining 2 tbsp of olive oil and half the basil. Season to taste. Serve with the rest of the basil scattered on top and some crusty bread on the side, if you like. You can eat it hot straight away or later at room temperature.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Easy salad for autumn

Autumn is here and sunshine becomes a precious commodity. I'm eating tomatoes while they still taste of something, but I'm all to aware that this won't be the case for much longer. Savoy cabbages are in all the shops - my favourite type of cabbage, with their crinkly leaves and a flavour that manages to be well-developed without any bitterness.