During Greek summers I don’t often eat much in the way of British food as I’m snowed under with delicious med veg that’s cheap too. So come winter, I like to indulge myself in a bit of British stodge as fuel. So I’ve made some Bubble and Squeak. The recipe is from fresh veg but, in our house, in my childhood, it was usually something had on a Monday to use up the mash and savoy cabbage from Sunday dinner (If I hadn’t demanded the mash go to make griddle cakes instead). The recipe can be endlessly messed with (try adding some chunks of apple too!). The pudding was inspired by one of Felicity Cloake’s recipes from her ‘Perfect’ series on the guardian. I can’t recommend Felicity enough. She’s fantastic. I did mine stove top rather than in the oven.
The recipes are for 2 people
Bubble and Squeak
10 baby potatoes halved and steamed until tender
half a head of Savoy cabbage shredded
1 onion chopped
3 rashers of bacon chopped (optional)
a good pinch of nutmeg
salt and pepper to taste.
Gently fry the potatoes and bacon in a little butter in a skillet on a medium low heat til the potatoes are a bit golden. Add the onion and cook for a few more minutes. Pile the shredded cabbage on top. Sprinkle over the seasonings and dot with a little butter. Put a lid over the pan and let cook on medium low heat for about 10 mins. Turn all the pan ingredients over so everything is well mixed and taste to check seasoning and see if the cabbage needs more time or not. Adjust seasoning as necessary and give a few more minutes with the lid on if the cabbage isn’t tender.
I like this served with a fried egg on top and lots of HP sauce…
Pears in Wine
4 pears peeled and cut into big chunks or chunky slices
half a bottle of red wine
2 tablespoons of vanilla sugar*
1 star anise
1 small piece of cinnamon
Put the wine, sugar and spice pieces into a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over a moderate heat to dissolve the sugar. Add pears and cover with a lid. Gently simmer for about 20 mins to half an hour or so. The time depends on the hardness of your pears and the size of the chunks. The pears are done when tender to the point of a knife. Remove pears with a slotted spoon to a bowl. Reduce the liquid
til it thickens to a nice glossy syrup and pour over the pears. Really nice served cold with Greek strained yoghurt.
*I keep a jar of sugar with a vanilla pod in it. I just keep the sugar topped up. Use ordinary sugar if you don’t have vanilla sugar.