Category Archives: Food and drink

Vile Potatoes

A very easy recipe that operates in the same space as boulangère potatoes, dauphinoise potatoes, potatoes au gratin and no doubt others that I have forgotten.


It’s basically just sliced potatoes, onions and garlic baked in cheese sauce:
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Beer tragedy update: good news, bad news

A week ago, I re-bottled my under-fermented, over-carbonated beer. The process was messy and physically painful, but I got it done. Tonight, I opened one of the re-bottled bottles to see how the beer had survived the process:


The good news is: I was able to open the bottle without causing a beersplosion, and the beer tastes good! Still a little sweeter than I would have chosen, but definitely deeper and richer than it was when I sampled it pre-rebottling.

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Chicken sort-of-korma

I’m posting this recipe for my colleague Jason Skomorowski, who enjoyed this curry when he was staying with me recently. It’s a mild, creamy curry that to some degree resembles a korma, but it’s nowhere close to authentic. Still, it’s my own recipe, and it works well. It has a much richer and more intense flavour than an actual korma.

This is not my curry, but it looks pretty much like it.

This is not my curry, but it looks pretty much like it.

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Rebottling over-carbonated beer: a tragedy with a happy ending

A few months ago I made some homebrew beer. But I bottled it prematurely — it hadn’t got far enough through fermentation — and so it kept generating more pressure in the bottles. A few of those bottles were glass: two of them exploded. Most bottles were plastic, and they inflated. When I opened a bottle to taste, it went absolutely crazy and shot all the beer out all over the place.

To get some advice, I emailed Andy Farke, who brews fairly seriously. He said the least worst approach would be to open all the bottles, capture what beer I could, and rebottle it. I attempted this a couple of days ago.


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Birthday sushi

For Dan’s birthday (and mine, which was six days earlier), I took him to Birmingham, which as far as I can tell is the nearest place to us that you can get good sushi. My goal was to fill him so full of sushi that he actively wanted to not eat any more. Here he is with the first plateful:

2016-03-19 13.50.46

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A cake that didn’t quite work

It was my birthday on Saturday, so I made myself an experimental cake:

2016-03-14 08.59.49--cakefail

It’s a variant on the chocolate and marmalade cake that I’ve been making. I wanted to aim for a more fresh, real flavour, so I dumped the 450 g marmalade, and instead used two whole oranges. I gently simmered them whole for thirty minutes to soften them, then blended them, and used the resulting semi-liquid in place of the marmalade.

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Oh, and the chocolate-marmalade cake!

Here it is, served with full-fat natural yoghurt:

2016-03-03 14.32.49-slice-of-cake

It’s a variant on a recipe attributed to Nigella Lawson — though of course recipes get handed down and around so much, with so little attribution, that it’s impossible to say where it really originated. The question might not even be meaningful, since cake recipes are like Makefiles: no-one ever wrote one from scratch, every one is copied and modified from one that’s close to what you want.

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