Thursday dinner: Bread, sweet potatoes, aubergines, eggs, milk, cheese
Savoury bread pudding with sweet potatoes and aubergines. Tear up some slices of bread and mix them with previously-roasted cubes of sweet potato and aubergine (leftovers from a couple of nights ago). Add grated cheddar and parmesan cheese (leave out the parmesan if you’re feeding vegetarians), season with salt and black pepper, then pour over a custard made by whisking eggs with milk (I used soya milk) and cream cheese (or cream, or plain yoghurt). Mix well, and add more milk if necessary to make it quite moist. Leave for 30 minutes to let the bread absorb the liquid, then pour into a greased baking dish and bake at 190ºC/375ºF/Gas 4 for 40–60 minutes.
Serve on its own or with salad, green veg, etc.
Saturday dinner: Tuna, celery, carrots, bread
A light dinner tonight since bob and I had dim sum for lunch.
Tuna salad. Mix drained tinned tuna with grated carrot and finely-chopped celery. Season with fish sauce and black pepper. Bind with mayonnaise. Serve in sandwiches or on toast.
Friday dinner: Salmon, red peppers, broccoli, potatoes, bread
Red pepper salad. Slice a red pepper thinly, dress with seasoned sushi vinegar.
Steamed tenderstem broccoli.
Cold boiled potatoes. Left over from earlier in the week.
Olive ciabatta. Bought from supermarket and warmed in the oven.
Friday dinner: Chickpeas, squash, bacon, bread
Chickpea and acorn squash stew with bacon and smoked garlic. Lardons and thick-sliced onions fried in the fat coming from the bacon until well-browned; thick slices of smoked garlic added, fried some more; Chinese cooking wine added and reduced; tomato purée added and stirred for a minute. Cooked chickpeas and cubed acorn squash added along with enough vegetable stock to cover; simmered until done.
Served with bread and butter.
Wednesday lunch: Flageolet beans, bread
This is a version of a salad I’ve posted about before. My aim here was to make a version that will freeze well.
Flageolet bean salad. Cook lots and lots of finely- chopped garlic very slowly in plenty of olive oil, until the garlic flavour has mellowed. There should be enough oil to make a dressing in the next step. Mix the garlic and oil with some (canned, rinsed, drained) flageolet beans, some (drained, finely sliced) sundried-tomatoes-in-oil, some (drained, finely chopped) capers-in-brine, and a good few spoonfuls of brine from the caper jar. Season to taste with salt if needed. Let it all sit for at least 10 minutes if possible, to let the flavours blend.
Served with wholemeal bread.
Friday dinner: Chickpeas, potatoes, chorizo, olives, bread
Chickpea, chorizo, and potato stew. Sauté chopped onions and chopped cooking chorizo in olive oil until onions are soft; add peeled chopped potatoes, de-stoned black olives, tomato purée, garlic purée, cider, veg stock, paprika; simmer until potatoes are soft; add finely-chopped parsley and celery leaves; simmer 1 more minute; serve with nice bread.
Sunday lunch: Artichokes, bread, carrots, chickpeas, cucumbers, edamame, peppers, rice
Buffet lunch for various friends.
Cucumber, edamame, and kelp salad. Scoop out and discard the seeds from a cucumber; cut the rest of it into chunks. Cook some edamame, take them out of the pods if they didn’t already come that way (I used frozen depodded ones). Mix with a packet of spicy kelp. Season with a little white vinegar, sesame oil, and sugar.
Chickpea, artichoke, and pepper salad. Mix cooked chickpeas with quartered artichoke hearts and chopped peppers; dress with olive oil vinaigrette.
Sweet and sour peppers. Slice peppers, fry in olive oil until very soft. Add balsamic vinegar, palm sugar, and a slosh of vegetable stock concentrate; cook down until the liquid becomes a thick glaze.
Vermicelli rice. Made with olive oil instead of butter.
Everything I cooked was vegan, though I did serve some non-vegan things (cheese, taramasalata, chicken wings) on the side. I also served various breads; black Lithuanian bread with cumin, Caribbean mongoose bread, Turkish bread (all these were bought within 5 minutes’ walk of my house).
Tuesday dinner: Black beans, chorizo, red peppers, broccoli, bread
Black bean, red pepper, and chorizo stew. Render fat from cubed chorizo, add chopped onion, soften. Add garlic purée and tomato purée, cook 2 minutes. Add cooked black beans with their cooking liquid, along with stoned quartered black olives, plenty of paprika, and a slosh of vegetable stock concentrate. Cook down until the liquid has reduced, then add chopped red peppers and broccoli florets, and continue to cook until the vegetables are done.
I served this with a slice of sourdough bread and a glass of Rioja.
Thursday dinner: Pork, lentils, greens, radishes, bread
Pork and lentil soup. Made with leftover roast pork from Tuesday, plus onions (fried in the pork fat that came off the roast), garlic, split red lentils, finely-chopped greens, chopped radishes, veg stock. Served with sourdough bread.
Wednesday dinner: Bread, tomato sauce, tuna, anchovies, cheese
Another quick dinner tonight: pizza toasts. This is sort of like cheese on toast with extra toppings.
Pizza toasts. Toast a thick slice of bread (I used sourdough) on one side, then turn it over and spread some tomato sauce (I used Loyd Grossman brand with wild mushrooms) on the untoasted side. Add flaked tinned tuna on top of this, then add cheese (I used sliced English goat cheese) and finally some anchovy fillets (the salty kind that come in olive oil). Put it back under the grill/broiler and toast until the cheese has melted and the rest of the toppings have warmed through.