There is a heady aroma in the house this evening, Garlic, Thyme, Rosemary, Lamb, Wine, Red Currant Jelly & Port, braised Lamb Shanks are on the menu with ‘Butter’ Mash and Green Beans wrapper in Pancetta.
Last week was hectic, manic and downright crazy with lots of travelling, eating, workshops and courses so the energy levels were rather low this weekend and cooking was not on the agenda. The benefit of travelling was the chance to try some great food, Meze in Darlington is really worth a visit and my review is already on Tripadvisor. Pauline and Cem made me most welcome, they don’t normally open on Monday evenings but my booking was accepted over the internet and the restaurant was all mine for the night. After a delicious starter of Feta stuffed filo ‘cigars’ with a selection of side dishes the main of Izmir Kofte returned fond memories of our two holidays to Turkey, eating proper home cooked food.
|The Delicious Starter of Feta stuffed Filo, Yummy!|
A real treat was when being cheeky, and mentioning I was ‘into’ food, could I see the kitchen and meet the chef, within minutes I was sitting with Cem, drinking coffee and talking food, a lovely end to a fantastic evening, thank-you both for your warm Turkish hospitality.
Another treat was some ‘posh nosh’ at the 5* Rockliffe Hall Hotel just outside Darlington, imagine Wild Garlic and Smoked Potato Veloute with crispy Frog’s legs, it was beautiful. The main was a difficult choice as there was lots to choose from, in the end it was the Sea bream ‘French style peas’ Pancetta & Parmesan Dauphine that got me, beautiful cooked. Dessert was ‘Rhubarb and Custard’ you will have to eat their to try it, it was fab.
So back to this weekend, feeling rather ‘zonked’ the only outing was a trip to the New Forrest to get some fresh air, see the Ponies and surprisingly, find a fab Fish and Chip shop in the centre of Lyndhurst which was just brilliant.
On getting home, a snack was in order but not feeling up to much a quick look in the cupboard to see what could be thrown together quickly.
Sardines, what could we do with a couple of tins and some half decent Rye Bread and a few brain cells kicking into action, so here goes!!!!
Take some Ras-al-Hanout and Dukkah spice (about a tea spoon of each) and stick into a cup with some olive oil and mix to make a marinade, you will need to adjust the quantity depending on how many people you are making this for.
Put the marinade into a flat dish and add some sliced Tomato for 30 mins or so. Empty the Sardine’s and Oil into a dish, add some chopped Garlic and sprinkle over some Dill, Thyme and some Black Pepper from the mill. Grate some lemon zest over the top, and squeeze half a lemon’s juice, turning the Sardines over to ensure both sides get the treatment.
Butter the bread (or brush with Olive Oil), and bake in the oven until crispy (about 7 mins at 180 deg fan). Remove from the oven and lightly spread some tomato paste (the stuff in the tube) over the bread, you need about 2 inches worth for each line.
Layer the marinated Tomato over the tomato paste on the Bread and bake for another 2 mins.
Split the Sardines into two, removing any eggs and place 2 slices on each piece of bread and bake in the oven for about 5 – 7 minutes.
The end result is just delicious, crispy buttery Bread, soft Tomato with a kick of spice and added flavour from the Tomato paste, and the Sardines with a hint of Lemon, Dill and Garlic. Good food does not need to involve expensive ingredients, I have added this one to the memory banks for later.
Hope you all have a great week, until next time.