Tag Archives: Easy Recipes

Chorizo, Pepper and Potato Tortilla (Spanish Omelette)

This chorizo, pepper and potato tortilla (Spanish omelette to the uninitiated) is the perfect dish for one of those nights (or lunchtimes) when you don’t have much of anything to make a meal out of.  Due to extensive flooding, we found ourselves delayed in being able to get to the supermarket this week, but thankfully we have the remains of a large sack of potatoes kicking about, and we always try to keep eggs, peppers and chorizo in the house (among other things like onions, sweet potatoes and garlic) so we came up with this creation.  Neither of us has had a Spanish Omelette/Tortilla before, but as far as we’re concerned, you can’t go far wrong with chorizo, peppers and potatoes so it was most definitely worth a shot.

I did a quick bit of Googling, and of course there are a number of schools of thought as to how one of these should be made, most of which involved cooking it entirely on the hob, flipping it over halfway through, and knowing how useless I am when flipping pancakes, the grill option seemed to make much more sense.  And we’re all about making things easy.

So here it goes: dig in and let us know what you think.

Chorizo, Pepper and Potato Tortilla (Spanish Omelette)

Chorizo, Pepper and Potato Tortilla (Spanish Omelette)

Ingredients

  • 6 medium potatoes
  • 1 cooking chorizo or about 1/3 of a cooking chorizo ring
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 red pepper
  • 6 eggs
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • grated cheese, optional but delicious
  • 1 tbsp or so olive oil

Instructions

  1. Peel and slice the potatoes - not too finely, and chuck the slices into a large frying pan, covered with salted water. Let them simmer, topping up the water if it dries out before the potato slices are nice and tender.
  2. When cooked, remove from the pan and add the oil. Now fry the potato slices, half at a time, until lightly golden. Remove and set aside for now.
  3. Slice the onion and fry until soft, then set aside.
  4. slice the chorizo into pound coin sized pieces and half each piece, then fry those off until just turning crisp.
  5. Mop up some of the fat, and beat the eggs together in a jug along with parsley and seasoning.
  6. Layer the potato slices in the pan with the onion, chorizo and pepper slices (they'll cook enough in the pan) then gently pour over the egg, letting it fill in the gaps. Turn your grill or oven up high.
  7. Let the pan sit over a low to medium heat, letting the egg gently set, like you're making a regular omelette.
  8. Slide the pan under the grill while the egg on top is still raw. Leave it there for a couple of minutes then remove and sprinkle on the cheese. Put it back under the grill until the cheese is melted and turning golden then carefully remove and set the pan on a worktop saver. Try not to leave it under the grill for any longer than you have to, as the eggs will turn rubbery.
  9. Slice up and serve with peas or salad and enjoy!
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Caramelised Onion Cheese Straws

These caramelised onion cheese straws are a bit like something that featured in one of Charles’ earliest recipes, but with my parents coming to visit, I thought we ought to put on a bit of a party for them in the new house.  As they were going to be arriving late on Friday evening, I got a lasagne in the oven and set about making them something to nibble with a drink when they got here.  With homemade food being at the heart of our home, it’s hard for us to hold back with that sort of thing.  If you come for a cup of tea or coffee, expect homemade biscuits or a cake, but if you come for a drink, well, we’ll try to put on a bit of a spread.  I know my Mum is a fan of cheese straws, so I figured we could add a little bit of interest to the traditional script by adding a caramelised onion chutney.  These are so simple to make but are pretty impressive when you wheel them out, and although Charles ended up eating most of them, they are pretty tasty and moreish as well as filling enough to serve up with drinks.

Caramelised Onion Cheese Straws

Caramelised Onion Cheese Straws

Ingredients

  • 1 packet ready-rolled puff pastry
  • 4 tbsp caramelised onion chutney
  • 100g mature cheddar
  • 1 egg

Instructions

  1. Grate the cheese onto a plate or into a bowl.
  2. Roll out the ready-rolled puff pastry and flatten out any creases.
  3. Using a spoon, spoon and spread out the onion chutney all over the surface of the pastry.
  4. Add around half of the grated cheese onto one half of the pastry.
  5. Fold the uncheesed pastry half over the cheesed half and press down lightly, matching up the edges as well as you can muster.
  6. Cut the pastry in half and then cut each half into four sections. Then cut the whole thing in half widthways to give you 16 sticks of sandwiched pastry.
  7. Lightly beat the egg with a fork and use a pastry brush to brush egg over all of the sectioned pastry.
  8. Now comes the tricky part! Prepare two large baking sheets or trays by lining them with greaseproof paper. Now turn each pastry stick into a twist by picking up the top right corner and twisting and folding it over the left side, and repeating the process but in the opposite direction with the bottom of each straw. Press them down a little and then egg wash each straw and sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Pop them in the fridge for half an hour and preheat the oven to 180c.
  9. Once they're nice and chilled, pop the trays in the oven for 20 minutes, or until golden, risen and crispy on the edges. If the cheese or caramelised onion burns in place try not to worry as long as the pastry hasn't burned.
  10. Allow to cool before removing from the trays, being careful as the cheese can become quite sticky, so if you try to whip them off too quickly they could break.
  11. Pop them into a nice bowl and serve to your guests. And enjoy the party!
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If you are looking for something to serve up with a nice cuppa rather than a glass of something stronger, why not try whipping up one of our Victoria Sandwiches or Mocha Cakes?

 

Quick Tasty Pork Rub

Pork loin steaks and pork chops tend to be readily available, whatever the season, in supermarkets and butchers alike, so this quick tasty pork rub recipe is a great one to have in your back pocket to transform a simple and balanced supper into a delicious weekday treat. If you’re anything like us, you’ll already have the ingredients in stock at all times (not the pork, obviously), but if not, they’re all fairly common ones which can be used in all sorts of recipes meaning they’re worth investing in.

Quick and Tasty Pork Rub

Quick and Tasty Pork Rub

Ingredients

  • 4 pork loin steaks or 2 large chops
  • 1 heaped tsp dried oregano
  • 1 heaped tsp ground cumin
  • 1 heaped tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme or 1 heaped tsp dried thyme
  • pinch salt
  • crack of black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Instructions

  1. Take the pork loin steaks (or chops) out of the fridge a good half hour before you plan on cooking them. This rub isn't a marinade so it doesn't need a couple of hours to settle into the meat; but you could of course use it that way if it's more convenient for you.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180c fan, and prepare a good sized baking tray by lining it with tin foil.
  3. Get yourself a clean bowl and add each herb and spice to it in the quantities given above, starting with the dried herbs and spices then adding the fresh thyme.
  4. Feel free to alter the proportions if there's something you prefer to taste, or leave out or substitute ingredients you don't have to hand for those you do. This is convenience food!
  5. Mince up or grate up the garlic before adding it in.
  6. Add the oil and stir everything together.
  7. Rub the rub into both sides of the pork and lay it onto the baking tray.
  8. Put in the oven for around 8 minutes until it looks cooked on the surface.
  9. It should be juicey and tender, but cooked through.
  10. Serve up with your choice of sides. We plumped for a lemony vegetable cous cous made with a little vegetable stock and lemon juice as well as some green beans.
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This recipe would also be great for sticking on the barbecue, just make sure it’s nicely cooked before you serve it up.  That said, there’s been a change in heart as  to whether pork can be served up pink.  We reckon it’s a matter of personal preference and are happy to serve it to ourselves that way, it helps it to stay as moist and tender as possible, but we wouldn’t serve it up like that to guests if they weren’t willing to try it!

If you liked this recipe, why not try our summery chicken marinade, which also works well in the kitchen or on the barbecue.

Beef and Mushroom Stir Fry

When I was in Morrisons last weekend, I spotted some oyster mushrooms and couldn’t possibly have left without buying some. They are expensive though so use sparingly! I also bought some quick fry sandwich steak (3 pieces for £3.30 which made two meals for one greedy person). I also used some of my usual stock vegetables and some tender stem broccoli, as it was only 89p for a change. 

  
There are quite a few ingredients in this guy, such as mirin and rice wine, but you can pick them up relatively inexpensively in most supermarkets or Chinese supermarkets, abs once you have them in your cupboard they’ll help you out with a multitude of other oriental recipes (and by that time they’ll feel like they are free flavour). So, there might be a  bit of an outlet but just go for it….

You will need (to feed 1) (although you can use whichever vegetables and protein you like):

1tbsp mirin

1 tbsp shaohsing rice wine

1 tbsp honey

2 tbsp light soy sauce 

1 clove garlic, grated

1 tbsp ginger, grated

Dash sesame oil

Splash groundnut oil for frying with

Half white onion

Half red pepper

Small carrot

4 florets of tenderstem broccoli

Handful of oyster (or other) mushrooms

Strips of your favourite stir fry beef, I used 1 1/2 quick fry steaks 

Rice or noodles to serve 

  
1. Chop the vegetables into bite-sized pieces. Grate the ginger and garlic. 

  
2. Add the ginger and wet ingredients into a bowl and mix together. This part can be done in advance if you like, but it doesn’t take long. 

  
3. Slice the beef into strips and place in the marinade. This should be done at least 10 minutes before you plan to fry the beef which, incidentally, should also be out of the fridge for 20 minutes or so before you plan to cook it.

  
4. Heat a large pan or wok on a high heat and add the oil. Chuck in the onions and allow them to start to break down a little. Although I like my carrots to be crunchy and fresh, I prefer onions and peppers to be a relatively softened, and I can’t deal with raw broccoli! The cooking times are entirely customisable to your vegetable crispness preferences. 

5. Once the onions have started to soften, turn the heat down to medium and add in the peppers, carrots and garlic, stirring occasionally so that nothing burns, then add the broccoli and allow all of those to simmer. 

  
6. Once the vegetables have almost reached your desired level of cookedness, push them to the side, turn up the heat and add another splash of oil. If you’re having dried noodles, they should be ready to go on by now too as they will only take a few minutes and will be reheated in the pan. 

7. Add the beef strips, a few at a time, trying not to introduce too much of the marinade to the pan. This will only lead to the beef boiling, which will leave it chewy. When just cooked on one side, turn onto the other and add the mushrooms to the vegetable side. Stir everything together.

  
8. Add the noodles and the marinade and stir through until everything is hot and combined, being careful not to overdo the beef. 

 Serve and enjoy!