On 03 September, 2016, three very special things happened.
The first was that I met my sister again for the first time in almost fifteen years. The second was that this happened at her wedding. The third is that one of the options for the starter at the meal was Black Pudding, Smoked Fish, and Hollandaise Sauce. Oh sweet baby Jesus!
Well I won’t bore you with how we came to be estranged for so long, and it’s not my place to share the details of her special day…. but I’m damned well sure I’m gonna share this beauty of a recipe with you!
Make sure you get a bit of everything on each forkful! The slightly sweet Hollandaise is countered perfectly by the smoke and salt of the fish, and the earthiness of the Black Pudding.
I’ve never been much of a baker (which you can probably tell by the disproportionate lack of sweet vs savoury recipes on tidymunch) and to be honest, I’d generally rather have a starter than a dessert. I do have a tiny bit of a sweet tooth now and again, though, and at Christmas I like to present a three course menu to you… so here you have this year’s dessert!
As usual, I wanted something a bit “different” but something that also references the traditions and themes of Christmas. Wracking my brains, I figured plum pudding would be a fairly traditional dessert, but with so much food to be consumed in the rest of the day, wouldn’t it be a bit on the heavy side? (One of the reasons I usually avoid Christmas Pudding!) So what about a tart? That could be nice and light, right? I scoured the interwebs, and tarte tartins came out tops…. I found a recipe that included spiced red wine, and that just screamed mulled wine to me (sue me if this isn’t quite accurate :p) and what’s more Christmassy than mulled wine?
Little did I realise that tarte tartins aren’t exactly easy! That’s the bad news… the good news is that even if you don’t get it quite right, this will taste amazing anyway! Go on, give it a whirl, I did, and even although I wasn’t 100% happy with the final outcome, it got rave reviews from six hungry co-workers!
Yay, we’re a year old! And what birthday would be complete without cake?! Well, technically, it’s a pudding, not a cake. And I’ve taken liberties with the title. It’s a Scrumptious Sticky Toffee Pudding, and the recipe is courtesy of Jamie Oliver in his Comfort Food book (with a small tweak from Nell).
It was my birthday a few weeks ago, so we made this for the occasion – but I decided to hold back blogging it until TidyMunch’s birthday!
I’ve never baked anything that was so easy, yet so rewarding… you owe it to yourself, your friends, family, and various other loved ones, to make this immediately. Go!
Today’s recipe was chosen by our Social Media Munchkins, who voted at either facebook or twitter.
Some people will try to convince you that this is not an authentic recipe, due to its use of Chorizo, but Paella varies so widely across the regions of Spain that I don’t think the concept of authenticity even exists in that sense.
Some balk at the thought of Black Pudding, but the beauty of Paella is that you can (and should) substitute any ingredients in or out as you please.
This may look like quite a strict and rigid list of steps, but it’s really not. Every time I make this, it’s different… largely because I do things differently without paying a great deal of attention. That’s the beauty of Paella. It’s supposed to be wild, an adventure of flavour and colour, taste and texture!