Thursday, 19 May 2011

You see that I have moved to DC, I see and taste Delicious Crumbe

Jet lag follows us around haunting our foggy minds. I seem to look for my local East London urban farm raised root veggies around every Northwest DC corner. And the smells and look of Rock Creek Park trees and leaves confuse my chili and cumin stuffed nostrils from this past winter spent in Sylhet, Bangladesh...

Jet lagged? Maybe. More likely longing for friends and food from what was foreign and soon became familiar. After many years as a chef in upstate NY I soon was creating trainings in London for chefs in how to cook “their” historical foods; Sunday roasts and shepherds pies becoming my foods as well. Sharing food with neighbours in Sylhet, Bangladesh...”their” home made curries for “my” fresh rolled pastas, and rice pastries for layered non-alcoholic cocktails became a nightly treat.

Do we miss those we are no longer near? Of course! Was I being mocked by East London friends about moving to D.K (District of Khaki)... of course!!!

The truth is that in a couple weeks so far living in D.C. I have seen so many wonderful glimpses into its food world. And so many people willing to chat, to connect me with other people and to give me the key tips...

No, this is bigger than all the job search tips...I am talking about the real keys to life in DC that people have schooled me on: the farmers markets (had wonderful ashed goat cheese at Mt.Pleasant), the amazing supplies of bulk goods at Takoma Food Co-op, which CSA to join, best bicycle routes, where to help make a difference in my new community,etc...

I get so excited talking to people about work, community, and food in the area as I unpack my boxes and find my way I can only start by give back a little bit...the last plate of crumble!!!

Mt. Pleasant Farmers Market Fruit Crumble



4 apples, washed, cored and thin sliced

6 stalks rhubarb, washed and chopped

Lime, zest and juice

2T raisins

1 t Cinnamon, to taste

2T sugar


75g(1/3cup) Sugar

75g (1/3 cup) Butter

100g (2/3cup) Flour

50g (1/2cup) Oatmeal

1t Cinnamon


  1. Heat oven to 190 C/375 F.
  2. Toss apples, rhubarb, raisins, lime zest, lime juice, cinnamon and 2 t sugar in you baking tin.
  3. Rub butter into the flour, stir in sugar, oats, and more cinnamon and rub till crumbly.
  4. Cover rhubarb apple mix with crumble mix and press firmly into place to create sealed layer over the fruit.
  5. Bake in oven for 40 minutes until browned and let rest 10 minutes, if you can, before eating.

  1. Serve this with some natural yogurt instead of ice cream or custard.
  2. Use whatever seasonal fruit is available.
  3. Add in some dried fruits or other citrus zests to change the flavours.

Saturday, 19 March 2011



One half kilogram of beef rib, freshly cut, at my local Kajitula market.


One kilogram of tomatoes, One kilogram of carrots, one kilogram of onions, one kilogram of flat beans, one half kilogram of potatoes, 2 bunches of coriander, 20 chilli peppers, 2 unknown to me variety of cucumberesque vegetables.

150 Taka is the total cost of the contents of both photographs.

This is about 2 American dollars or 1.50 British pounds. It might seem pretty cheap, but in a country where a labourer makes 150 taka a day and a child labourer makes 100 taka a’s pretty steep.

The same 150 taka will get you 2 kilograms of rice and 1 kilogram of lentils.

So many choices for us, so few for many others. We have the option to actually follow what often seem to be crazy food guidelines in the U.S. or U.K. Just look at these two pictures and we see a Eat well plate, Food pagoda, Food pyramid or whatever pictorial device your country uses to show proportions of food.

I am not being scientific here, simply realistic. We need to decrease our animal protein intake dramatically in order to become healthier, save money, and decrease environmental degradation due to the present system of animal protein production.

A bit of red meat aint gonna kill anyone, a big ole pile of cooked vegetables and salads will help you out alot nutritionally and focusing your meals around cheap and healthy whole grains and fibre rich vegetable proteins such as lentils and beans will not only add to your health, but keep lots more money in your pocket.

I love my breakfasts of hard boiled egg, a bit of cheese, tea, carrots, tomatoes, cucumbers that can be quickly assembled for an on the go breakfast here in Sylhet and sometimes I simply crave a bit of roti and tea at the end of the day. We all need to eat a bit more like one elder lunch lady from East London said while she was participating in public sector cookery training “... like a king for breakfast, a prince for lunch and a pauper for supper...”

In the end, we don’t simply buy dinner at the market, we are paying for our family’s health and well being...and as the adage goes....You get what you pay for!!!!

THE WORLD IS A VERY SMALL PLACE...especially in terms of childrens food choices

Spending these winter months living in Sylhet, Bangladesh continues to be an eye opener. Sometimes its as simple as reminding me that the world is the same all over...

Ice cream and fried treats for sale outside the school gates

The Maggi “chef” visits a Sylhet town primary school to teach children how to "cook" their “healthy” instant noodles!!!!

The school tuck shop selling processed foods with long enough ingredient lists that they could teach a spelling lesson through label reading!!!!

How much different is this from the U.S. with school pouring rights issues, sponsored TV shows at school, and low fat but high sugar items created for the public sector market at every turn...And U.K. schools with their dozens of fried chicken and chips shops surrounding every school...

Our world is getting smaller, and with the ability to communicate, share ideas, and get to know one another this makes me very happy...but our tasteless processed foods are becoming more prevalent the globe over....

Seeing fields of rice, pineapple, tea, limes, and bananas less than ten minutes from town refreshes me but then I am stupefied when I then see processed bagged food products being marketed to children in and around schools that seem to be made of nothing but wheat or soy flours, soy or corn oil, and some form of sugar derivative.... I think we all can be a bit more imaginative with our food, caring to our kids, and helpful to our health....


In a town like Sylhet in Northern Bangladesh, it’s quite easy to eat locally.

I have my pick of locally grown and processed rice’s at every shop in Sylhet...whether I want highly polished basmati, baby basmati, short grain aram, or my favourite hand milled “almost” brown boro!!!

I adjusted the menus of all my restaurants to the seasonal bounty of the Finger Lakes of Upstate New York. I work with schools and social enterprises in London to hit their price points by purchasing local meats and vegetables from their own community. In Sylhet, we cook rice for our main meal most days, eat local eggs, chickens, and river fish, use mustard oil and have learned local sweet desserts made from rice, carrots, and sweet potato.

I say this not to gloat. Of course I should be able to come up with great dishes to eat...I am a professional chef. That is not the point. It’s actually irrelevant for great cooking. Let the market write your home food menu, as I did with my restaurants. This is the secret trick of simple great food.

We have seen in the last few weeks laal saag (a bit like red swiss chard) overflow in the markets, which pushed us to make lots of greens and beans or saag paneer when the paneer cheese man walks by our house. Now spinach is coming to town and this will be the centre piece along with baby eggplant for pasta that we will roll out this week as we have dinner parties for local friends before we return to London and then Washington...

Let the market (not the supermarket or tv advertisements) write your menu.

It may sometimes seem like a bit of a hunt to get your food supplies...and yes it will be very rare that every item on your plate is from the local market place, but every meal can have some item from the local food shed. And in time you will find many a wonderfully tasty surprise...and maybe just maybe as it takes a bit longer to find these wonderful items, we may learn again to appreciate food and those who toil to grow it for us.

Sunday, 27 February 2011


Spending these winter months living in Sylhet, Bangladesh is turning out to be an ideal time to focus slowfoodfastcookin on some bigger ideas of cookery and food. Each week I have been exploring a cookery mantra that will help you in the kitchen. With a photograph and a bit of global perspective, I trust you will find each entry helpful and thought provoking.

I love to cook. I hate waste. Whether it is rotting vegetables in the refrigerator or time cooking too small a batch of food. I truly detest wasting good food or precious time.

Many people complain that cooking is too difficult to do every night. Its too hard to plan so many meals for a week, with kids lunches to make, community events to attend, cookery shows to watch(hmmm?), cleaning to finish, not to mention simply relaxing with friends and family...

Don’t cook food every night. Yes, I said it. You do not need to cook a masterpiece of variety, flavour, and artistry every night of the week. What you simply need to do is understand how the size and timing of your cooking can make life easier

  • Think about more than one meal when you cook. Maybe steam the entire kilo of broccoli, knowing you will want to bring some for lunch during the week. Why not chop onions for tonights stir fry with rice and the mid week fried rice (hmm...same rice two ways as well)
  • Cut your products the same size for even cookery. The point of cooking is not to cook everything to death so that you know its DONE.... trust me it was five minutes ago!!!
  • Use the correct size pan for the job...why break out the giant stock pot and waste gas boiling five gallons of water to simply cook one pound of pasta...what else can you cook with same water...and what are you doing while its boiling???
  • Double and triple the recipe size. This will save you time when you simply have to reheat or defrost that wonderful soup, sauce or casserole you made previously.
  • Buy real whole food and buy in bulk. Simply put... shop less, save more, and know what is actually in your food besides the salts, sugars, fillers, and preservatives!!!!
  • If you make a big batch and it does not taste perfect...fix it and forget about it!!!! This is dinner, not the end of the world, we all have bigger issues to worry about then if the onions are slightly over caramelized or the paneer is a bit too cooked!!!!

Remember that there are about seven billion people on this here billion are undernourished, one billion overweight or obese and most of us are just trying to stay “safely” somewhere in the middle.

Am I recommending you buy a giant chest freezer and attempt to cook a months worth of meals on a 24 hour cooking bender, as my friend’s mother did when I was a child. Hardly. I simply want you to make the right choices. Our present belief in the necessity of unlimited choice is an unnecessary and unsustainable luxury. Making meals at home should not be.

Size does matter, and so does our time, our health and our food.

Saturday, 19 February 2011


More and more we are observing a call to cut back on salt, fat and processed sugars. Many try and often find the end result of their “healthy” cooking to be both bland and less than inspiring. Some would say, SO WHAT, its for your health, learn to live with it. I say, no £$£@%? way!!!

Tasty food is about quality cooking and seasonal and fresh ingredients, period. It’s not about excess and the heavy hand of fats, salt, and sugary products. As we have spoke of in recent blog posts, one needs to use a variety of techniques to flavour your food. Many people ask me how they can, “...spice up their food?” The answer is in the question!!!

The liberal use of spices, is not merely a substitute for fats and salts, but actually can increase the taste of your dishes. I am not talking about the season salt, supermarket blends of spices; I mean individual spices used with what is almost, just almost, reckless abandon...

  • Toast whole spices such as cumin or coriander seeds to bring out deeper flavours before you toss with roast
  • Crust a piece of fish, beef, or tofu with crushed fennel or smoked paprika before searing in a pan
  • Braise vegetable or meats with a small handful of whole spices such as peppercorns, dried chilli’s, or cinnamon sticks thrown in ( blog post 4 May 2009).
  • Toss a handful of black onion or mustard seeds in the pickling liquid when using up leftover seasonal vegetables (blog post 17 June 2009).
  • Use a mortar and pestle or a clean coffee grinder to grind your own spices, as you need them, for max flavour.
  • Buy spices in bulk, keep them sealed and out of the light, and use them with a heavy hand.
  • Taste what you are cooking !!!!!!!

FINALLY.... Don’t add one grain of salt to your food till the end of cooking process... then and only then add and taste again.

And this is how you will end up with tasty food flavoured by your cookery and a whole lotta spices!!!

Thursday, 10 February 2011


That sounds like a mouthful, and it is. A real mouthful of flavour. Any chef, cook, parent, friend, who tells you a list of twenty ingredients for their special sauce or recipe better go back to the stove and try again. I am not saying don’t flavour your food but that folks should put a lil thought into what to actually add to the food that you purchased with hard earned money from the hard working farmers who keep us fed.

When it’s the time of year for a specific seasonal product, then I say use it. Again and again. I ate mangos all day long during the hot season when I lived In Mali. Raw, juiced, dried, mixed with greens, cooked with peanut sauce, stewed, and chomped on like an apple!!! And they were dreamlike. Eating a wonderful piece of local Pabda fish here in Sylhet I find the slow cooked pile of sweet onions that have just come to market are amazing!!!! In Sylhet the winter crop of onions are worth savouring as the price has almost doubled in the last year for consumers along with rice, oil, and wheat, and at the same time the farmers are making half the amount of money...that is food for thought my well fed friends!!!!

Want to add cumin into a nice meal of roasted vegetables, with salmon and a sauce? Why not roast the vegetables with cumin seeds, crust the salmon with cumin and then make a puree like sauce of some of the roasted cumin flavoured beets. Now we have added flavour, doubled texture and simplified the number of ingredients.

Think carefully of what type of fat you may be cooking with: a strong olive oil, a dollop of butter, a bit of bacon...all can go along way if used correctly.

What are the one or two spices/herbs you want to flavour your dish? Got ‘em? Now don’t be afraid to use them in a few differently ways (roasted, toasted, powdered, fresh, etc)

Is the cooking technique you are using the best for the job? Maybe its worth firing up the grill even in winter, to get a great flavour on those root veggies or a steak as opposed to putting the magic combination of every spice in the cabinet on them!!!

What are the complimentary dishes? Can the tomatoes in the tomato sauce also have some roasted tomatoes as a garnish? Maybe the fennel puree can be served with pickled fennel and crushed fennel seeds on your roasted tofu?

Can you change your main dish with a new twist? How about a puree of your favourite black beans under your standard white rice and served with a center of plate attraction of grilled or roasted seasonal vegetables...

This is not rocket science...this is having fun in the kitchen and not burying flavours in the bottom of a shopping list of random acts of seasoning unkindness....

We all want to eat well. We all want to have fun. We should be able to achieve both in the kitchen each and every day.

Saturday, 5 February 2011


Two nights ago I passed a fever filled night of chills and shakes. Last night I started writing this blog entry only to be jolted by the shaking of our building during an earthquake. Two nights ago was man made and last night was nature. Both were real. The reality of life should be awakening...

The food we eat needs a wakeup call. I was told by a man on the street, as we all fled out of doors during the shaking of buildings, ”Life is but an instant, Life is nothing...” And it made me think of what most of us humans actually eat. We eat as if nothing matters; like a prisoner on death row awaiting their last meal. Globally, with an obesity rate of 10%, UK/US rate of overweight at about 40% and increase heart disease, diabetes, and various cancers we are not far off!

In truth what we want in those moments, whether after an earthquake, on death row, or just returning home are memories through flavours, a last taste of a reality we may never know again. Some ask how to get to that place???

  • When I want to eat something fruity, I want the juice of the mango on my lips, not that of corn syrup sweetened candy.
  • When I desire the flavour of tomatoes bursting in my tomato sauce, I want them from real farm fresh seasonal tomatoes not from powdered pulp mixed with thickeners, sugars and fillers
  • When i want to eat a roast chicken, I want to taste the crispy skin and the juicy meat. I want to savour the flavours of the fields the chicken found food in, not the extrement of the pen it was stuffed in with thousands of others as they wait to become proccessed fried chicken products.
  • When I have a cup of tea each morning, I want reality as well. The real price paid for the real labour of all the south Asian migrant labourers up here in Sylhet, slaving away in the hot sun, the stifling humidity, and often the torrential flooding all to pick the worlds tea leaves.

We in the U.S. and U.K. currently pay less for food than at any other time in our collective histories, and the ones paying the price are the billions of poor producers, labourers, and the environmentally deteriorating planet!!!

I will keep writing blog posts with cooking ideas, but we all need to remember to eat real food. Don’t eat marketing. Don’t eat labels, They just don’t taste good. Simply eat real food. It does not matter if you are a manager of a school food division or managing your kid’s lunch, take a second to think of the big picture and what real food really means to you and the people you serve. Buy if you can from a real grocer, butcher, fishmonger, fisherman, and farmer. Find out where your food really comes from and then try to pay a real price. And most important, have some real enjoyment with friends and family.


Thursday, 27 January 2011


Spending the winter months living in Sylhet, Bangladesh I thought it would be a good opportunity to refocus the blog on some bigger ideas of cookery and food. So each week I will explain a cookery mantra that will help you in the kitchen. I will relate this through a photographic item of note from my present time here in Bangladesh, which I hope helps to frame our cookery mantra towards some other larger food issues.


There is a battle waging in people’s kitchens. Day after day, year after year, people sweat and are stressed in front of the stove. WHY? To cook well one needs firstly to relax!!!

One attempts to cook a beautiful piece of sustainable fish in a pan and it never seems to brown no matter how much they move it around? All one needs is to have a hot pan, pour in a splash of oil, and then slide in the piece of seasoned fish over the oil. Next shake pan one to make sure the fish (if multiple pieces do not crowd the pan) is not sticking and then.... LET IT REST. Do not touch it, I repeat, do not touch it. Let it cook; and when browned, then and only then flip it. The same idea holds for roasting vegetables:spread out on a tray, let cook, then flip(see blog post 23 April 2009).

Ah, the BBQ ...Flipping every item on the BBQ as if you are gymnast doing your Olympic floor routine. NO. NO. NO...Let each side cook till nice marks appear before you turn them and not before. How do you think restaurants get the perfect grill marks on an grass fed steak that should be a "rare" treat? Easy, place seasoned steak on very hot grill and turn steak after 2-3 minutes to a 90 degrees angle, then after 2-3 more minutes flip/turn 90 degrees more, and then after 2-3 more minutes turn 90 degrees again and depending on temperature desired you should be complete (see blog posts on grilled pizza 10 July 2010 and grilled sardines 10 July 2010)

Lastly, lets remember what to do after cooking a wonderful piece of sustainable fish, grilled grass fed steak, or a nice free range carving bird.... LET IT REST. Before slicing the occasional steak or serving a piece of fish, let the hot item relax a few minutes (for a large item such as a turkey or large joint of meat one can let it relax for ½ hour covered in foil).

Resting a piece of meat allows its juices to evenly redistribute from the center across all the product and you end up with a more tender/flavourful food on your plate!!! Also, the residual heat in the product actually continues the cooking, so when you think a piece of meat is finished cooking, remember, it will continue cooking as long as it’s hot!!! This is the same for a nice casserole, lasagna, loaf of bread or cake...calm, relax, and let it rest (See blog post 29 July 2009))!!!!

In short, cooking should be relaxing, it should not be a stressful act that looks like karate or gymnastics...if you see yourself or your family member acting as such then you are working to hard and more importantly you are working your food to hard and it will let you know in drier, less tasty meals...

I know many of you may think these steps are nice, but you are also saying, I DON'T HAVE THE TIME!!!! I have to admit, cooking does take time. Fortunately, studies have show that the time we spend at restaurants, drive thru and take away shops is actually more then people previously spent actually cooking real food!!!! So don’t succumb to the billions of marketing dollars the food industry spends every year to convince you that good nutritional health and fiscal freedom comes out of a box. It does not!!!! It comes from you and you can help put it on your plate. Just cook, and remember ... LET IT REST

Friday, 21 January 2011

THE secret kitchen ingredient

Spending the next few months living in Sylhet, Bangladesh I thought it would be a good opportunity to refocus the blog this winter on some bigger ideas of cookery and food. So with each post I will explain a cookery mantra that will help you in the kitchen.

WATER, the one ingredient used in every meal!!!

How would we survive without the hydrating force of water? How do we wash our vegetables, let alone our hands and surfaces we cook on without a bit of soap, bleach, etc and a whole lotta water??? I must confess, that water is the real secret ingredient used in every restaurant kitchens across the planet, even if the most chefs don't know it!!!

How do we thin out an over reduced sauce?

How do we rinse off salt we have put on vegetables for pickling?

How do we wipe off our knives between uses?

What do we steam our vegetables over?

How should we refresh ourselves while we cook?

Often restaurants use stock to flavour soups, sauces or braises. A stock is basically cooking a flavourful ingredient such as veal or fish bones, with aromatic vegetables (usually onions, garlic, fennel, celery, carrots, etc) in a large quantity of, guessed it.... Water!!! Allowing the heating of water to pull out flavours from ingredients over a low and slow cooking process brings out flavour from often discarded ingredients such as bones, vegetable trimmings, and leftover carcasses. (See blog post from 29 july 2009)

When one wants to slow cook meats in the oven until they are mouth wateringly fork tender (braising); what is usually the liquid beyond stock (mostly water) used as the cooking medium? Its water! Allowing the meat to cook in its own juices, along with aromatics, and just enough water to cover the product a braise (see blog post 4 may 2009) is a cheap and tasty way to gain flavour.

Serving a gravy and you realize it’s a bit thick and you wonder, what did you do wrong? Unfortunately you have most likely reduced it too much and the water vapour escaped. This is no problem, just return the missing ingredient by splashing in a small amount of water.

Making flatbreads (10 july 2010 blog post) and the dough is a bit too tough and not very pliable then simply splash a bit of water on your hands or on the dough and get kneading!!!

And of course when you are sautéing some fresh, local, seasonal and healthy vegetables in a pan and you have only used minimal oil to cut down on the fat, there may often be a problem. The vegetables seem to be drying out and possibly burning???? Well besides turning down the heat and making sure you don’t have too many vegetables in the pan for a good sauté (Saute translates literally as, jump!!!), just add a splash of water to finish the cooking. This not only unsticks the product, releases the nice browned bits from the pan, helps to pull all the flavours together, but even makes clean up a bit easier.

Water is the secret ingredient for easy and healthy cooking. So important for the 6 billion people on the planet and yet we still waste it!!! Do you cook and brush your teeth with tap water? Then why not drink It.? Why use bottled water that has absolutely no extra nutritional value? Are you living in a place with no access to clean, reliable water? That is what I thought. Besides being a secret ingredient in your cooking, did you know it takes nine litres of water in the process of producing 1 litre of bottled water for you to purchase? That my friends is a waste of the secret key ingredient in your cooking, and more to the point a waste of a scarily not so secret scarce commodity for the majority of our planetary residents!!!!

Saturday, 15 January 2011


Spending the next few months living in Sylhet, Bangladesh I thought it would be a good opportunity to refocus the blog this winter on some bigger ideas of cookery and food. So with each post I will explain a cookery mantra that will help you in the kitchen.


It takes alot to balance your flavours in cookery. When you make a soup, stew, sauce, or gravy often it tastes a bit, shall we say... off, missing something, or in need of a certain je ne c’est quoi!!! So what to do?

Have you made a soup that tastes a bit sharp and acidic; then add a splash of olive oil. If you are feeling a bit naughty, a pat of butter swirled into the soup just before serving will give the roundness and mouth feel that makes a good soup taste great. Often the big change, the real help, is a lil' bit of acid. And what do we mean by acid: lemon juice, lime juice, orange juice or a flavoured vinegar to cut through the richness and fat of a dish.

For example, when making pan gravy to go with your Sunday roast it often is quite fatty, even after skimming the fat off the top, and it may be missing a bit of spark. One can simply squeeze a bit of lemon or lime into the final product to brighten the flavour before everyone starts dumping salt on his or her food.

A few other examples of how this can work:

  • If making a lentil soup use lime to brighten up final flavour before thinking of salt.
  • When making a marinara sauce a finishing splash of balsamic vinegar or olive oil may be necessary depending on the freshness of the tomatoes and the length of cooking.
  • A beef stew can go in so many directions: lemon juice or red wine vinegar can both help to balance the richness of the final product.
  • Here in Sylhet all of our curry meals have been served with wedges of lime, chili's and cucumber which all help to balance and give depth to the meal.
  • Often we here of “oddball” ingredients in recipes, secret tips, that in truth are just mechanisms of balance: bitter chocolate in regional Mexican dishes, coffee in chili con carne, preserved lemon in a tajine and chutneys with a cheese ploughman's are all methods to balance the fat and acid that make a boring meal into a masterpiece.

The key is in using only what is necessary and tasting as you make adjustments. These are simple ways to adjust, enhance, or change up any dish you make without adding the unhealthy and uninteresting option of salt. As well, use fresh/seasonal ingredients which have more natural flavour and sugars that don’t need much enhancement by extra salt, sugar, or fat.

It is simply a question of balance.

The purported balance of the new “natural” Frito’s, recently trialed vitamin fortified Pepsi, or fadtastic Omega-3 fatty acid pills are a cheap ploy to sell products to a population with an unbalanced diet, just as splashing salt on your food is simply masking a lack of balance in your cooking. Eating a couple pieces of fruit a day for a snack, a piece of omega rich fish once a week, or drinking some good old fashion water might help bring back some balance not only to the vitamins and minerals you want, but the sustenance and joy in eating that one needs.

In short, a bit o butter once in a while will not kill you, a bit of acid may help you cut back on salt, and a bit of thought about the food we cook and eat will go along way in creating a balance that is long overdue in how all of us enjoy sustainable and nutritious food with our co-workers, friends and family.

Thursday, 25 November 2010


Every year it happens to us. We make a holiday meal such as the one you are stressing over today in America: the turkey is in the oven, the potatoes are a roasting or mashing or sweet and under the marshmallows, and then it occurs to us? What do I got to do with those sprouts? Well for sprouts or cauliflower or any of those root veg such as beets, carrots, parsnips or sun chokes here is an easy, heavenly treat....

What you need
250g ( 1/2 pound ) streaky bacon, large dice
1.5 kilogram ( 3 pounds) Brussels sprouts, washed, ends trimmed off and cut in half
salt and pepper
spice of choice ( fennel seeds, cumin seeds, black onion seeds, etc)

What to do
  1. Turn oven to 200 degrees Celsius ( 385 F)
  2. ON large baking tray spread out bacon and place in oven till fat is rendered and bacon starts to crisp slightly.
  3. Toss Brussels sprouts on top of bacon ( add splash of olive oil if you have been skimpy on the bacon)
  4. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and spices
  5. Roast in oven till lightly browned ( 1/2 hour)

More dishes to wash
  • Substitute in small rough chop of carrots, beets and turnips for a colourful change.
  • Sprinkle some Stilton or other blue cheese over vegetables just before serving.
  • Try this recipe with cauliflower, and toss hot vegetable quickly with spinach for a seasonal wilted side "salad" dressed with a squeeze of lemon and a few pomegranate seeds