Tag Archives: Tomatoes

Smoked Paprika Chicken – a delicious nod to Spain

Apologies again to all my lovely followers for my absence the last few weeks. I’ve been working tirelessly on completing the edits for my new novel. I’ve self-published my previous two novels on Amazon (you can check them out here). This time around I’d like to pitch the book to an agent and I’m hoping to have it ready by the end of the year. Wish me luck!

But regardless of how busy I am there is always time to cook good food. Some standards can never be allowed to let slip.

I can’t tell you how happy I am that spring has arrived in New Zealand. Winter this year seemed interminable, not helped by the horrible cough I had for weeks on end. But you need to be a little wary of spring. Just when you think it’s time to whip out the spring/summer wardrobe, Mother Nature decides to remind you that it’s not summer. Not yet. And on those chilly spring evenings I still find myself seeking comfort from the evening meal.

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Italian Sausages with Tomato & Cannellini Stew

It seems appropriate that I’m currently snugly settled in a café with coffee and my laptop while the weather rages outside. Appropriate because my recipe today is another winter warmer.

Yesterday was the winter solstice in New Zealand and therefore the perfect time to share this recipe that I am extremely fond of. Not great timing for my fellow Northern Hemisphere bloggers (a heat wave has been sweeping Europe!) who won’t be putting winter warmers on their cooking agenda at the moment. But it’s great fun to store recipes away and then revisit them when the seasons change.

This dish has many things going for it – simple to make and packed with flavour being among them. And I’ve always loved a sausage. They are so comforting and versatile. But the key as with most things when it comes to food and cooking is quality. You really do need to start with a good quality sausage.

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Sauce vierge – perfect in its simplicity

You’ve all heard the term “less is more”. When it comes to food and cooking it’s a motto to live by. That’s not to say complex and creative dishes don’t have their place. But there are times when paring it back is essential and the key to being a good cook is knowing when to do this.

I’ve mentioned previously that when I travel to Italy the first thing I eat is a Caprese salad. Mozzarella, tomatoes, basil and olive oil. That’s it. Of course you could try and be creative and add other things. But why would you? It’s perfect just as it is.

This week I’m sticking with the combination of tomatoes and basil (an outstanding combination of the food world) but move from Italian to French cuisine to bring you sauce vierge. This sauce is another example of less is more – keep it simple and let the quality of the ingredients and their flavour carry the dish.

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Homemade tomato relish – and my cheese obsession

My love affair with cheese goes back to my childhood. As early as I can remember it was my favourite thing to eat. In fact, my mother knew that when it came to her daughter’s school lunches a sandwich was not a sandwich unless there was a cheese component.

But my mother understood completely. After all, it was from her I inherited my obsession with cheese. And it is as strong today as it was when I was a child. But I find this is an obsession I can live with quite easily.

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Patatas bravas – the wonderful flavours of Spain

Each country has its own unique cuisine and certain elements or dishes of that cuisine are more famous than others and tend to make their way into popular eating in other countries. Spain is probably most famous for its tapas and rightly so. When I’m in Spain it’s always what I look forward to most.

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The Brave Eater

When I was growing up I was one of four children. That meant every evening my mother cooked for six people. She didn’t cook three slightly different versions of the meal depending on who liked what. There was no room for fussiness or pushing food around the plate hoping to skip straight to dessert. No. Mum cooked a meal and we ate it. Simple.

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The one dish tray-bake – effortless, delicious, comforting

Normally Thursday is my blogging day but I’ve deviated from my normal schedule to bring you a recipe I was desperate to share.

This magnificent meal was the product of a Saturday night spent at home – I’ve confessed previously how much I enjoy a quiet weekend. Often it’s a great opportunity to pick up a takeaway and a big tub of ice cream, relax and watch a good movie. But I decided to cook.

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