Friday 29 August 2014

Pan Fried Sea Bass with Potted Shrimps and Lancashire Potato Cakes

For our final homage to all foody things great about Lancashire I wanted to use potted shrimps and make a potato cake, and here it is!


2x Sea bass fillets
2x Large spuds
2x Garlic cloves, peeled
1x Pot of potted shrimps
1x Small savoy cabbage
Half a lemon
Frozen peas
Self raising flour


1. Peel and chop the spuds, boil with the garlic cloves and allow to cool a little.
2. Mash the potato with a big knob of butter and season.
3. Mix self raising flour into the mash to make a dough, roughly 4 parts spud to 1 part flour.
4. Pat lumps of dough into cakes about 1/2" thick, leave them roughly shaped for rustic or trim up into squares or triangles for posh.
5. Heat some oil in a frying pan and medium heat and turn the oven on low. Fry the cakes in the pan, turning occasionally, then put them in the oven to keep warm.
6. Shred the cabbage and stir fry in a wok with lemon zest, at the end squeeze in the juice of the lemon and season.
7. At the same time as cooking the cabbage, dry the bass on kitchen roll, score the skin at 1" intervals, season, then place skinside down in the frying pan used for the cakes on medium heat. You must press the fish down gently as it curls, it will only curl for a minute or so. Fry skinside for about 3-4 minutes then flip over fry the flesh for 1 minute.
8. Remove the fish from the pan and bung in a handful of peas for a minute.
9. Put the pot of shrimps in the microwave for about 20 seconds or until the lid rises.
10. Plate up and pour over the lovely buttery shrimps. I gave mine a sprinkle with Lancashire Sauce too, yum!

Upon reflection it would probably of been easier to buy ready made potato cakes from Booths. I'll probably make this at home with rosti's. You could even use potato waffles!

Thursday 28 August 2014

Parched Pea Chilli Con Carne

Parched peas are a Lancashire delicacy usually served in small polystyrene pots with pepper and vinegar by street food vendors. I love them! They are actually maple pea's but I only ever see them for sale in Lancashire. To prepare they need soaking overnight then boiling for 1-2 hours. They produce a delicious brown gravy which gave me the idea that they would be perfect for a vegetarian chilli con carne. It worked well and we think tasted better than beef chilli. If you cant get parched or maple peas try it with any dried pea or bean.


For the chilli:

Parched peas
1x onion, diced
2x Garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
2x Carrots, peeled and cut into semi-circles
2x Celery sticks, diced
1x Red chili, chopped
1x Can of tomatoes
1x Red pepper
1x Tin sweetcorn
1x Bay leaf
Tomato puree
Coriander powder
All Spice
Chilli powder
Smoked paprika
Red wine vinegar
Frozen peas
Fresh coriander stalks, chopped
Basmati rice
Lancashire sauce
Lancashire cheese, grated
Sour cream

For the guacamole:

Basically just mash this lot up in a bowl, season and put in fridge.

1x Avocado, peeled stoned and diced.
1x Shallot, diced
1x Red Chili, diced
1x Tomato, peeled, deseeded and diced
Fresh coriander leaves, chopped
1x Lime, juiced


1. The night before prepare the parched peas as per the packet instructions. Basically soak them.
2. The next day sweat off the diced onion in a deep pan with a splash of oil.
3. Add the carrots and celery and cook for a couple of minutes.
4. Add 1tsp of each of the following:
    Coriander powder
    All spice
    Chilli powder
5. Add the garlic for one minute.
6. Squirt in about a tablespoon of tomato puree and 1tsp of paprika and cook for a minute.
7. Pour in the tinned tomatoes and 2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar.
8. Add the chili, remove seeds and pith if you do not like it hot.
9. Add the parched peas and just cover with boiling water.
10. Add the bay leaf and chopped coriander stalks.
11. Cover and allow to simmer for 1-2 hours, stirring regularly.
12. Cook the rice in a separate pan. 1 cup of rice to 1 cup of salted boiling water with a tablespoon or two of Lancashire sauce for about 10-15 minutes.
13. When the rice goes on add the peas, sweetcorn and red pepper to the chili, add more water if it's too thick..
14. Taste and season the chilli.
15. Plate up the rice, top with the chilli, then grated cheese, then the sour cream, then the guacamole, and finally torn coriander leaves.

Tuesday 26 August 2014

A Garlic Festival of Chicken and Mushroom Spaghetti

Another super easy tea, loaded with flavour due to all that garlicky goodness.


2x Large garlic bulbs
1x Chicken breasts, cooked and chopped up
2x Glasses of white wine
1x Echalion shallot, or half an onion, diced
Mushrooms (about half a tub of closed cup chopped into quarters)
Double cream, small pot.
Sugar snap peas, or any pea or green bean, fresh, frozen or tinned
Fresh parsley


1. Chop about 1cm off the top of 1 whole bulb. Put the bulb in a foil parcel, drizzle with oil, wrap up tightly and roast in the oven on gas 6 for about 40 minutes.
2. Have a glass of wine then about 30 mins later bring a pan of salted water to boil and put in the spaghetti.
3. In another pan sweat of the shallot in a bit of oil.
4. Add the chopped mushrooms to the shallot.
5. After a few minutes chop or crush 2 cloves of garlic and add to the mushrooms and shallot. Fry for about a minute.
6. Pour in a glass of wine and finely chopped parsley stalks and reduce down by about half.
7. Add the chicken and pour in half a pot of cream.
8. Chuck into the spaghetti a handful of peas or beans.
9. Remove roast garlic from oven and allow to cool a bit.
10. Carefully remove the delicious gems of roast garlic cloves, any that get mashed up just plop them in the sauce.
11. If the sauce is too thick add a bit of the spaghetti cooking water. Season to taste.
12. Serve up by piling the creamy garlicky chicken and mushroom sauce on top of a plate of spaghetti and peas, grate some cheese on top and scatter the delicious garlic cloves. Finish with black pepper, chopped parsley leaves and a drizzle of nice oil.

Monday 25 August 2014

Easy Peasy Cheesy Chicken Sleazy

I've noticed that the recipe index is lacking in chicken recipes and also some easy to cook recipes, so in two birds with one stone fashion I give you my Chicken Sleazy. Sleazy because its full of tinned stuff, but it is very tasty and perfect for those lazy evenings when you can't be bothered to slave away at the stove.

Vegetarians just swap the chicken soup for condensed celery soup, and use cauliflower, broccoli or quorn instead of chicken.


1x Cooked chicken, we used a rotisserie one from Booths
1x Box of stuffing
1x Tin of Campbells condensed cream of mushroom soup
1x Tin of Campbells condensed cream of chicken soup
1x Tin of mixed veg
1x Tin of sweetcorn
2x Glasses of white wine
1x Chicken stock cube
Cheese, any will do, we used Mrs Kirkhams Lancashire cheese, we are in Lancs after all.


1. Make the stuffing as per packet instructions.
2. Pick all the meat from the chicken with your fingers.
3. In a baking tin or casserole dish mix half a tin of chicken soup with a glass of wine.
4. Mix into the dish all the mushroom soup with a tin of hot water and half a stock cube.
5. Sprinkle in the chicken meat.
6. Drain the tinned veg and sweetcorn and sprinkle into the dish.
7. Grate the cheese on top.
8. Layer the stuffing on the very top.
9. Cover with foil and shove it in the oven on Gas 6 for about 20 minutes then remove foil for a further 15 mins.
10. Drink a glass of wine.
11. Put it on a trivet in the middle of the table and tuck in!

Serve it with some nice green veg, we did it with stir fried iceberg lettuce and garlic. This meal is intended to be easy but you can add more flavour by first sweating off some onions and garlic and use fresh veg like carrots leaks, celery, etc.

Friday 15 August 2014

Lamb Steaks in Blue Cheese Sauce, Sautéed New Spuds, Salad and Garlic Stir Fry

Mrs Larry loves blue cheese sauce so instead of doing the old faithful beef steak I thought we would try it with lamb, and it worked! Salad quickly stir fried is delicious too, it doesn't have to be eaten raw and if it is just about to go soggy bung it in a wok rather than throw away. We also used leftover new potatoes that are simply delicious when crisped up in the wok. This is a quick, easy dinner with very little washing up.


Lamb steaks (or chops or cutlets)
Blue cheese. I used 150g of gorgonzola
Cheddar cheese
English mustard
1x Pot of cream
1x Bag of salad
New potatoes previously boiled
2x Garlic cloves, peeled and sliced


1. In a saucepan gently warm half the pot of cream (about 150ml) with a teaspoon of mustard.
2. Season and oil the lamb then put them in a hot wok for about 2 - 2.5 minutes each side. Remove and cover with foil.
3. Into the warm cream crumble in about 140g of blue cheese and a handful of grated cheddar.
4. Bung into the wok the precooked spuds and some more oil if needed. Cook until nicely browned then set aside.
5. Finally into the wok goes the salad and garlic. Keep it moving in the wok for about a minute, season if needed.
6. Pour any lamb juices into the cheese sauce.
7. Plate up!

Wednesday 13 August 2014

Crispy Skin Salmon, Lemony Greens, Garlic New Spuds and a Poached Egg

Salmon fillets with crispy skin are delicious and easy to do too. It took me a long time to work out how to cook a perfect poached egg and then one day, whilst staying on Passage Farm CL in Gloucestershire, I learned how simple it is. The eggs have to be no older than 3 days. That's it. If they are that fresh they will poach perfectly every time, anything older will separate and get messy.


2x Smoked Salmon Fillets
1x Bag of new potatoes
2x Eggs. We used bantam eggs from the local farm.
1x Garlic clove.
Half a lemon.
Runner beans.


1.  Peel the garlic and crush the clove with a fork until it is a smooth paste. Mix the paste with the butter, wrap in cling film and put in the fridge.
2. Get the new spuds on the boil.
3. Slice the side off the runner beans length ways, trying not to cut the kidney beans. Squeeze out the beans then slice the rest of the green bean.
4. Get a pan of water for the eggs on the heat.
5. Bung all the beans in a frying pan or work and gently saute with some nice oil.
6. After a few minutes add the peas to the beans and zest the lemon in.
7.  Oil the skin side of the salmon and season with salt. Place skin side down into a hot frying pan. Season the upturned pink side. Cook for 3 minutes then flip over and cook for 1 further minute only.
8. Crack the egg into a bowl then empty from the bowl into the pan of barely simmering water, just a few bubbles are needed.
9. Take the spuds off and drain, mix the garlic butter with the spuds and season.
10. Squeeze the juice of half a lemon into the runners.
11. Plate up!

Tuesday 12 August 2014

Mr Stanleys Marrows Soup

Mr Stanley is a nice old gentleman in the van next door and he gave me a couple of marrows he had grown himself back at home. We had some other veggies that needed eating up so soup was on the menu. It's a nice healthy option if you remove the cream, or bread depending on your diet.


2x Marrows, peeled and deseeded
1x Leek chooped up
2x Sticks of celery, sliced
6x Garlic cloves
1x Onion chopped
1x chicken stock cub or equivalent
2x glasses of white wine
Frozen peas
Flat leaf parsley
Parmesan cheese
Single cream
Horseraddish sauce
Rape seed oil
Crusty bread


1. Put the garlic cloves (skin on) in a roasting dish and coat in oil. Put in the oven at gas 6 for about 20 minutes. You are looking to be able to squeeze the sweet juicy pulp out of the skins.
2. In a big saucepan or wok sweat off the onion.
3. Add the leek and cook down a bit.
4. Add the marrow and celery.
5. Add a glass of wine.
6. Drink a glass.
7. Add some water and bring to a simmer.
8. Add the stock and garlic pulp.
9. Seperate the parsley leaves from the stalks, chop the stalks and bung them in the pan.
10. Add a couple of big handfuls of frozen peas. Cook for only a minute or two.
11. Whizz up with a hand blender or mini mixer.
12. Return to heat and add water if consistency too thick. Season with salt and pepper if needed.
13. Mix the horseraddish sauce with a good glug of cream. Dont mix too vigorously or it will thicken, loosen with milk if this happens.
14. Swirl the creamy horseraddish into the soup.
15. Shave the paresan cheese with a peeler and tumble into the pan.
16. Swirl in some rape seed.
17. Drop some torn parsely leaves onto the top and serve with the crusty bread. Yum!