Pasta, Tomato & Blue Cheese

Well it has been a while! I feel a little like I have lost my cooking mojo at the minute. No matter how much I plan, I’m not really sticking to it. So this is one factor in my lack of blogging. Then there is the fact that I’ve had my busiest period at work and I’m still playing catch up there. Then weekends are taken up by dogs and helping Mr S with the admin side of his business. Yes, it has definitely taken a back seat.

As I was so far behind I was going to ditch this post. Look at it! It doesn’t look like much does it? I decided to post it because it SHOULD have been good. I just made a poor choice on the pasta. So here we are:

On 14th May 2016, This was Dinner

Get set…

  • Quarter some cherry tomatoes
  • Finely chop a garlic clove
  • Crumble some blue cheese
  • Get pasta, chilli flakes, good oil & seasoning ready

Throw it together…

 

Mix the tomatoes with the garlic and oil. Add the chilli flakes and some salt and pepper then give it another stir and leave to one side for about half an hour.

Cook the pasta according to the instructions then mix with the tomatoes and add the blue cheese.

Dish it up…

Finish with a pinch of pepper and a little more cheese if you have it.

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Ha, I couldn’t even remember how I posted the blog!

This recipe can be found in Hugh’s Three Good Things, where he uses a lovely penne pasta.

Egg Fried Rice with Beef

I was look forward to my post for Gnocchi with Bacon, Blue Cheese & Cavolo Nero but you have to believe me when I say it tasted far better than it looked! It was so good though, I’ve posted the recipe below this one.

So on 28th January 2016, This was Dinner...

Note: To get ahead, precook some rice.

Get set…

  • Oil & season a large steak
  • Slice some mushrooms
  • Slice a couple of garlic cloves
  • Slice some spring onions
  • Lightly whisk a couple of eggs
  • Get cooked rice, soy sauce, sriracha, beansprouts, sesame oil & seasoning ready

Throw it together…

Heat a griddle pan up high and cook the steak for 2 to 3 minutes each side, depending on how you like it. Remove from the pan and leave to rest.

Heat the sesame oil in a pan and add the mushrooms, cook until starting to soften then add the garlic, beansprouts and both sauces. Cook for a minute or so then add the rice.

When the rice is cooked through, move to one side and add the egg to the empty side of the pan. As it starts to cook, stir the rice back through. Add the spring onions and season to taste.

Dish it up…

Slice the beef and serve on top of the rice with an extra squirt of sriracha.

TWD_2801_Fried_Rice

Here’s the original.

So the gnocchi…

And the problem was the gnocchi. Don’t believe the packet when it says its OK to freeze. It spoils it. We thought we were in for a terrible meal but it was actually really tasty, just not photogenic.

I’ve not used cavolo nero (or black kale) before but decided to use it last week when I saw it in the supermarket.

Get set…

  • Thickly slice some cavolo nero
  • Crumble some blue cheese
  • Get gnocchi, single cream, bacon, butter & seasoning ready

Throw it together…

Cook some strips of bacon in a dry frying pan. Remove and chop into pieces.

If the bacon has released plenty of oil, add the kale but if not add a little butter first. Cook it, stirring all the time until it wilts. Add a little cream and the blue cheese and stir occasionally.

Cook the gnocchi in boiling salted water, drain and add to the kale. Stir well and season.

Dish it up…

Serve sprinkled with the bacon bit’s and an extra dash of black pepper if required.

I’d definitely use a stronger blue cheese next time. I bought it from Aldi as the cheese man at the market was on holiday so there wasn’t a large choice. Oh and I will definitely avoid freezing gnocchi in the future!

Pork Chops with Tomato & Blue Cheese

On 19th January 2016, This was Dinner

This went from being Lamb with tomatoes and feta to this. Mr S didn’t see any nice looking lamb chops at the market so picked up some pork. As he never knows what things are for he still bought the feta but we had some blue cheese in the fridge that needed using up. I’ll think of something to use the feta with.

You can cook the steaks however you want but I always prefer my pork finished in the oven.

Get set…

  • Trim & season some pork steaks
  • Roughly chop some tomatoes
  • Crumble some blue cheese
  • Tear up some basil.
  • Get white wine vinegar, oil & seasoning ready
  • Preheat the oven to 190°c (fan)

Throw it together…

Mix the tomatoes with the cheese, basil, vinegar and oil. Season.

Heat some oil in a pan and cook the pork for a couple of minutes each side then transfer to a baking tray and cook for 5-8 minutes, depending on the thickness of your pork. Let the pork rest for a minute or so.

Dish it up…

Serve the tomato mixture on top of the pork and drizzle with any juices. We had ours with some crusty bread.

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The original recipe comes from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s Three Good Things which is a great book. I highly recommend it.

Steak with Onion & Blue Cheese Sauce

On 2nd January 2016, This was Dinner

Over the Christmas period there’s a lot of pastry and finger food involved and although I already had a food list prepared, we both fancied something nice and simple.

Preparing:

  • Finely chop an onion
  • Preheat the oven to 190°c (fan)
  • Get your steaks to room temperature
  • Grate some cheddar
  • Get double cream, blue cheese, butter, Worcestershire sauce, oil & seasoning ready

Making:

Pop the potatoes in the oven. Cook for an hour depending on size.

When the potatoes are almost done, make the sauce.

Heat a little oil and butter in a saucepan and add the onion. Cook gently until softened. Add a dash of Worcestershire sauce and pour in the cream, stirring gently on a low heat. Crumble in the blue cheese and stir, season to taste and keep warm.

Heat a griddle pan. Oil the steaks and season with salt. Cook to your liking then leave to rest whilst you get the potatoes out.

Cut the potatoes and serve with butter and cheese. Pour the sauce over the steaks.

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Steak & Chips with Blue Cheese Sauce

On 25th July 2015, This was Dinner

We were supposed to be having my parents round for a barbecue but they had to cancel. It worked out quite well as I was at the hairdressers in the morning and was spreading myself a little thin. Also, not really BBQ weather.

Mr S met me after the hairdressers and he’d decided on steak and chips with a blue cheese sauce. Rather than deep fry the chips, we ovened them, far better for you and just has delicious.

Preparing:

  • Get the (rump) steaks to room temp
  • Cut some potatoes into chips
  • Crumble some blue stilton
  • Get cornmeal, plain flour, butter, oil, milk, sea salt & seasoning ready
  • Preaheat the oven to 190ºc (fan)

Making:

Par boil the chips. Drain and leave to dry out a little.

Toss in oil, cornmeal & sea salt.

Lay out evenly on a baking tray and cook for about 25 minutes.

Heat the butter gently in a pan and add plain flour, stirring until combined. Remove from the heat and add a little milk at a time, stirring continuously. Be patient, this will ensure there are no lumps in your sauce.

When all the milk is added, season well and bring to the boil. Reduce and add the stilton.

Oil and season the steaks. Add to a preheated pan and cook to your preferred tastes.

TWD_2507_Steak_Chips

I had some courgettes which were not going to last much longer so I roasted them too.

On Sunday we had Lisa’s chilli with Lisa’s flatbreads. There was a right pile of both.

Blue Cheese, White Grape & Red Onion Tart

This was supposed to be a dinner but with takeaways last week it ended up as a spare so I decided to make it, cut it and freeze it to take for work lunches.

Preparing:

  • Preheat the oven to 170ºc (fan)
  • Finely slice a couple of red onions
  • Halve some white grapes
  • Slice up some blue stilton
  • Get some shortcrust to room temperature
  • Get plain flour, paprika and oil ready

Making:

Roll out the pastry on a floured surface and line a tart tin. Mine was probably a little big for the amount of filling. Prick the base and cover with baking parchment and baking beans. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes then take out of the oven and remove the paper and beans, bake for another few minutes if you feel it needs it.

Heat some oil in a pan and add the onion, frying gently until softened.

Transfer the onion to the base of the pastry then add the grapes and the stilton, sprinkle with paprika.

Bake for about 10 minutes.

TWD_Baking_Grape_Stilton

Digging out old cookbooks again, this comes from ‘The People’s Cookbook, A Celebration of the Nations Life through Food’ and I think it might be the first I’ve ever cooked out of it.

I had a piece for lunch at work yesterday and it’s quite rich but very nice.

Blue Cheese Salad with Walnut Croutons

On 22nd September 2014, This was dinner

Mr S did the market shop alone this week. When requesting some blue cheese from our cheese stall he was told “that’s very strong blue cheese” to which he replied “it’s OK, I’m doing the shopping”

Sigh!

I had to have the tiniest of pieces on my salad as it was far too bloody strong for me! That’s it. He’s not having chicken for a month!

Preparing:

  • Make a lemon & wholegrain mustard dressing
  • Cut some walnut bread into chunks
  • Cut some blue cheese into pieces (very small pieces in my case)
  • Mix natural yoghurt with parsley and seasoning
  • Get baby spinach, rocket, oil & bacon ready

Making:

Fry your bacon in a dry pan, pop on some kitchen paper.

Fry the pieces of bread in the bacon fat until golden.

In a bowl put baby spinach and rocket and drizzle with the lemon and mustard dressing.

Add the blue cheese and croutons.

Roughly chop the bacon and add to the salad.

Top with the yoghurt dressing.

TWD_2209_Blue_Salad

Nice but a milder blue cheese for me next time.