Recipes from Nigella’s Kitchen

December 31, 2010 at 1:26 pm | Posted in baking, puddings, savoury | 2 Comments
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So… as this is NYE, and my goal for the year was to cook at least 50 new recipes. I’ve just flicked through Nigella’s Kitchen which has been my main cookbook for the last couple of months to see what I have cooked but not blogged and the amazing news is that I have cooked 12 recipes from Kitchen which brings the grand total up to 52 recipes which means I have reached my target! I sadly don’t have time today to write-up a full posting for all of the missing recipes… so instead I am going to do a speed-review for what I have cooked.

Overall I think Kitchen is a good recipe book. I’ve been trying to work out where I think it sits in the league table of cook books (or at least Nigella’s books) –  it probably sits below How to Eat and Domestic Goddess, which are two of my favourite cook books of all time, and broadly equivalent with Feast and slightly above Nigella Express.  Nigella Bites, Forever Summer and Nigella’s Christmas all have their places – and some of my favourite recipes can be found in there – but overall they are less brilliant than the others. It is interesting to look through the different books, written over more than a decade, to see how Nigella’s style has changed (most obviously a greater use of food processors and mixers in the later books!) but also the development of clearer method sections which makes recipes much easier to follow (if a little less interesting to read).

So to the recipes:

Recipe 41: Chocolate chip cookies
Pretty simple to make. I was initially attracted by the photos of Nigella putting them on baking trays using a quarter-cup to measure them out. I tried doing that, but just made a mess! I used M&Ms instead of choc chips, which looked great, but I think the sugar coating on the M&Ms made the overall effect a little too sweet. Need to re-try with choc chips and also play with cooking times a little as they were not as soft as i hoped (but we still managed to polish them off quickly in the office!)

Recipe 42: lemon polenta cake
This is to be become a classic! It is wheat/gluten-free which makes it very useful! It was delicious – lemony, rich and damp (Nigella describes it as lemon curd in cake form). It is very damp, which did make it slightly messy to eat, but we overcame that hurdle!

Recipe 43: flourless chocolate lime cake
The lime flavour came through strongly in the cake, which was surprising given it only contained one lime, but it was a brilliant sharp edge to a rich chocolate cake. I served it with the suggested margarita cream – which was incredibly delicious. So overall another hit (and brilliant as a flourless chocolate cake that doesn’t involve the faf of separating eggs!)

Recipe 44: marmalade pudding cake
A great pudding – a simple hot sponge pudding delicately flavoured with marmalade.  Worked well after Sunday lunch. Great with ice-cream (and as Nigella suggested, the leftovers were still yummy the following day!)

Recipe 45: lemon meringue fool
Unbelievably easy: softly whipped cream, lemon curd, lemon juice and some crumbled meringue. It was rich, but I find the sharpness of the lemon cuts through the richness. I made it twice in quick succession and it will definitely be added to the list of super-fast, super-easy and super-delicious puddings that taste amazing but involve no effort!

Recipe 46: chocolate chip bread pudding
Sadly this was a bit too dull for my taste! It wasn’t as rich as the Delia chocolate bread and butter pudding, but neither was it as interesting. Although it was easier to make as the bread was simply cubed and no need to butter!

Recipe 47: mixed meat pilaf
Simpler to make than the saffron scented lemon pilaf and a good set of suggestion for using up leftovers . I didn’t use any pomegranate seeds, which probably would have raised it up from being slightly dull but I’ll probably revisit the template when I am using up the last bit of turkey stashed in the freezer.

Recipe 48: small pasta with salami
A simple pasta sauce using salami, canellini beans and chopped tomatoes which was wonderfully warming on a cold day (battling through the slightly surprising snow in the first week of December). I think I added too much water, so had to leave it to boil down for a while longer than Nigella suggested. But definitely one to revisit.

Recipe 49: spanish chicken with chorizo and potatoes
Another tray-bake so very simple to make. Unfortunately by the time the chicken was cooked, the chorizo had become rather too crunchy. But I’ve now bought special “cooking” chorizo which are little individual sausages which should take slightly longer to cook and not dry out in the same way.

Recipe 50: greek lamb chops with lemon and potatoes
I think this will become a dinner party standby as it’s incredibly simple – everything is cooked in one tray but totally delicious! The juices are lemon-y and garlicky and while it was a robust dish it was somehow reminiscent of somewhere in sunshine!

Recipe 51: roast duck leg with potatoes
This was amazing! Incredibly easy – the duck was browned off on the hob to start the process of getting the fat out, then the potatoes were added and it was shoved in the oven for 2 hours. By the end of that time, the duck and potatoes were soft inside but crispy on the outside.

Recipe 52: slow roast belly pork
I’ve already cooked it twice – as it is the perfect Sunday lunch. The pork is marinated overnight and then cooked slowly for 3 hours – so perfect for shoving in the oven before going out to church. Then when you get back, the oven is turned up to crisp up the skin, giving time for roast potatoes as well! The only shortcoming is that there is no gravy – I did try, but the marinade just leaves burnt bits of tahini n the tin which doesn’t make a flavoursome jus – it just tasted burnt!

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  1. […] Recipe 13: Merguez with halloumi and flame-roasted peppers from Nigella Express to be honest… a disappointment! Using ready roasted peppers didn’t add much flavour so I continue to use fresh peppers and cook them in the full tray bake as outlined in recipe 40. I didn’t manage to get merguez sausages either… and the chorizo was overcooked (should have remember that before cooking the spanish chicken) […]

  2. […] greek lamb from Nigella’s kitchen, slow cooked pork belly (both in the Nigella’s kitchen round-up post) or the marinated lamb from the Vicar’s […]


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