Monday 26 October 2015

Malvern Pudding

OK so the Clent Hills aren't in the Malverns but we are in Worcestershire, as are the Malverns, and as we can see them from the Clent Hills so Malvern Pudding will do as a local dish for me. All the traditional recipes talk of making custard from milk and cornflower or double cream but you know what, I cant see anything wrong with a good old carton of custard. There is nothing wrong with the taste so why go to all that hassle, especially when on holiday in the van.


Apples, 1kg peeled, cored and diced. We used Bramley but you can use any.
Granulated sugar, about 50g
1x Lemon, zested
Custard, 1kg carton
Cinnamon, 1tsp
Brown Sugar, 1tbsp


1. In a frying pan or wok cook the apples with a big nob of butter for about 5 minutes or until they are soft.
2. Stir in the lemon zest, granulated sugar and cinnamon and cook for another minute.
3. Pour the apples into a dish and top with the custard.
4. Dot thin slices of butter over the top of the custard and sprinkle with brown sugar.
5. Grill for about 5 minutes or until the bubbling.


1. Squeeze the lemon juice into a bowl and coat your apple pieces immediately after chopping, its stops then turning brown.
2. In the caravan the grill is quite small so you will have to rotate the dish to grill the top evenly.

Also available on Meals in Fields

Sunday 25 October 2015

Brummie Balti with Chicken and Rice

For our Sunday lunch today we decided to throw tradition out the window and have the local specialty of a balti. I'm not sure why I called this dish a Brummie balti as the term balti originated from Birmingham anyway. There is a debate as to where the name came from but to me it is simply another Indian curry, and I love curry! As we are a stones throw away from Brum it would be rude not to give the dish a go but not wanting to stink the van out I'm cooking it on the cadac outside.

(Serves a family of 5)

Paprika, 1 tsp
Cumin, 1 tsp
Coriander powder, 1 tsp
Garam masala, 2 tsp
Turmeric, 1/2 tsp
10 Cardamon pods, shell discarded, seeds removed and crushed
Cinnamon, 1/4 tsp
2x Onion, diced (or 1 large onion)
3x Garlic cloves, diced
4cm Ginger
Chopped tomatoes, 2 cartons 780g
1x Red pepper, diced
Fresh coriander, a bunch
Natural yoghurt
White wine vinegar, 1 tbsp
Sugar, up to 1 tsp
5x Chicken breasts, cut into pieces


1. In a big frying pan or wok heat a glug of oil and fry the chicken pieces in batches for a minute to seal then set aside.
2. Into the pan goes the onion to sweat off for 10 minutes, keep stirring.
3. Mix in all the spices and keep stirring for a couple of minutes.
4. Add the garlic, ginger and red pepper in. Keep stirring for another 2 minutes.
5. Pour in a cup of water and then the tomatoes.
6. Chop up the coriander stalks into the sauce.
7. Cook the sauce for about 15 minutes then blend with a hand blender. You might need to add some water if its too thick. Taste and season with the wine vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper.
8. Get a pan of water boiling ready for the rice.
9. Pop the chicken into the sauce and simmer for about 20 minutes or until cooked.
10. At the same time as the chicken goes in get your rice on the go.
11. Plate up with a blob of yoghurt and sprinkle over torn coriander leaves.


1. If you like it hot then definitely add chopped chillis, With the seeds if you like it really hot, with the garlic and ginger. This was cooked for the kids too so I omitted heat but added a good glug of my favourite chilli sauce to my portion.
2. If you want to make it more balanced add some veggies like cauliflower or broccoli florets for the last 10 minutes.

Saturday 24 October 2015

Faggotless Faggots with Mushy Peas and Cauliflower Puree

Mmmm you can't beat a good faggot! We are staying in the West Midlands conurbation and as such are not far from the Black Country where faggots* and pea's are as regional to them as jellied eels are to cockneys**. All the local butchers make their own faggots, each with unique tried and tested recipes and I'm sure I'd love them all but there is a but. Mrs Larry isn't keen on the thought of the offal so for our tea tonight I'm making faggotless faggots, meatballs basically, with Worcestershire Sauce - well we couldn't come to Worcestershire and not use that infamous and illustrious delectable pride of the county. Served up in onion gravy with mushy marrowfat peas and cauliflower cheese puree (to keep the carbs down) I can't think of a finer meal on this chilly old autumn evening in the van.

(Serves a family of 5)

1x Box of marrowfat peas soaked overnight
1x Cauliflower, large
Grated cheese, 3 large handfuls

For the faggots:

Mince beef, 1kg
1x Small onion, finely diced
1x Large garlic clove, crushed
Worcestershire sauce, as much as you like, I used 1 tbsp
Salt and pepper

For the gravy:
Chicken stock, I used fresh but only because I had some. Make up any stock cube you like.
1x Onion, halved and sliced
1 tbsp cornflower mixed with water to make a paste


1. Mix the faggot ingredients together in a bowl by hand,  season well and shape your meatballs with your hands.
2. Heat a glug of oil in a deep frying pan or wok and brown the meatballs for a minute or two. Do them in batches then set aside.
3. In the frying pan make the gravy by sweating off the sliced onions for 15 minutes then pour in the stock and bring to a simmer. Thicken the gravy with the cornflower/water mix
4. Pop the balls back in and simmer until cooked, about 30 minutes.
5. In another pan gently cook your marrowfat peas to the packet instructions.
6. Cook the cauliflower in a pan of water for about 5 minutes or until soft, drain the water then mash with a fork or a hand blender if you have one on board, add grated cheese and season.
7. Plate up


1. You could simply use bisto for the gravy and not bother making up stock and cornflower.
2. Personally I like Mr Brains faggots so you could simply use his. They are tasty, easy and cheap.
3. I don't use binding agents in the faggots but you could add breadcrumbs or egg if you like.
4. Use any mince meat you like, I used beef steak mince but you could use any beef, pork or turkey. A mixture of beef and pork mince is a very fine combination indeed.

* In the Black Country faggots are also known as Ducks, and in the North of England they're called Savoury Ducks.

** Did you know that to be a true cockney you have to be born within earshot of the Bow Bells, which is St Mary-le-Bow church on Cheapside near where I used to work in London. I can't think of any maternity ward near Cheapside so I'm guessing true cockneys are sadly a dying breed.