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Tag Archives: Comfort Food
  • Posted on October 19, 2017

    Venison Sausages with Red Wine & Rosemary Gravy

    This is real comfort food! Perfect for a romantic evening in or an Autumnal dinner party. Rosemary works really well with red wine in a gravy. Easy to make. Everyone will love it. Win, win!



    600 g/21 oz. venisonsausages


    4 tablespoons light olive oil

    20 g/11/2 tablespoons butter

    2 medium red onions, thinly sliced

    2 garlic cloves, crushed

    1 tablespoon freshly chopped rosemary leaves

    1 tablespoon tomato puree/paste

    1 tablespoon plain/ all-purpose flour

    175 ml/3/4 cup fullbodied red wine

    175 ml/3/4 cup beef stock

    sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

    mashed or baked potatoes and red cabbage, to serve

    Serves 4


    Heat a frying pan/skillet over a moderate heat.

    Add 2 tablespoons of the oil, heat for 1 minute then add the butter.

    Once the butter has melted tip in the onions, stir and cook over a moderate heat until they start to brown.

    Add the crushed garlic and rosemary, stir and cook for another minute. Add the tomato puree/paste, stir, cook for a minute and then work in the flour.

    Pour in the red wine and beef stock, bring to the boil, season lightly with salt and a generous amount of freshly ground black pepper then turn the heat right down and simmer for 15 minutes. Check the seasoning and adjust to taste.

    Meanwhile brown the sausages well on all sides in the remaining oil. Drain off the fat and add the sausages to the gravy. Leave over a low heat for 10 minutes or so for the sausages to absorb some of the sauce then serve with mashed or baked potatoes.

    Red cabbage is also delicious with this dish.


    If you liked this recipe, check out Wine Lover's Kitchen by Fiona Beckett.





    This post was posted in Featured, Featured, News, Recipes, Recipes, UK, US, What's new, What's new and was tagged with savoury, Comfort Food, recipe for the weekend

  • Posted on June 19, 2015

    Recipe for the Weekend: Father's Day Fries

    This weekend in the UK we're looking forward to some time with our dads... If you want to treat your old man to something special on Sunday (and we don't just mean a cold beer and the TV remote!), then why not cook him these delicious looking Father's Day Fries? This recipe is taken from the tempting new book by Laura Washburn, simply titled Fries and filled with all sorts of tasty tricks to pimp up the potato, sweet potato, parsnip, pumpkin and celeriac into the ultimate comfort food.

    I'm travelling back up north to visit my dad this weekend, so just happen to be in the mood for this British (and mostly northern!) favourite; chip shop chips and curry sauce! We'd love to see your chips chaps (curry sauce or not!), so tag us in your photos on Twitter or Instagram using #fathersdayfries and our favourite fries will win a copy of the book on Monday!

    Curry Fries

    classic fries

    3–4 large floury potatoes, all roughly the same size

    vegetable or sunflower oil

    sea salt flakes


    Peel the potatoes and trim on all sides to get a block. Cut the block into slices about 1-cm/3⁄8-in. thick, then cut the slices again to get chips.

    Put the potatoes into a bowl of iced water for at least 5 minutes, to remove excess starch and prevent sticking when frying.

    Fill a large saucepan one-third full with the oil or, if using a deep-fat fryer, follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

    Heat the oil to 190°C (375°F) or until a cube of bread browns in 30 seconds.

    Drain the potatoes and dry very well. Working in batches, fry about a handful of potatoes at a time. Place the potatoes in a frying basket (or use a slotted metal spoon) and lower into the hot oil carefully. Fry for 4 minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels. Repeat until all of the potatoes have been fried.

    Just before serving, skim any debris off the top of the cooking oil and reheat to the same temperature. Fry as before, working in batches, but only cook until crisp and golden, about 2 minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels. Repeat until all of the potatoes have been fried.

    Sprinkle with the salt flakes and serve.

    Classic Fries

    curry fries

    This is a British chip-shop staple that’s hugely popular. The sauce is usually a powdered mix but, when made from scratch, it does elevate this well above the average. Depending on how hot you like your curry, adjust the curry-powder heat in the recipe and if lots of fiery chilli is desired, add a good pinch of chilli flakes as well. Great with an ice-cold lager.

    Classic Fries (see recipe above)


    2 tablespoons vegetable oil

    1 onion, grated

    1 apple, peeled and grated

    1 garlic clove, crushed

    2-cm/ ¾-in. piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated

    2 tablespoons medium-hot curry powder

    1 teaspoon turmeric

    1 teaspoon paprika

    2 teaspoons ground cumin

    ½ teaspoon ground coriander

    1 tablespoon plain/all-purpose flour

    500 ml/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock

    1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

    1 tablespoon tomato purée/paste

    freshly squeezed lemon juice and/or sugar, to taste

    SERVES 4

    Prepare the curry sauce. Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan/skillet with the onion. Cook over a medium heat, stirring occasionally, until aromatic, 3–5 minutes.

    Add the apple, garlic, ginger, curry powder, turmeric, paprika, ground cumin and ground coriander and cook, stirring for about 1 minute.

    Add the flour, add a splash more oil if it is very dry, and cook, stirring continuously for another 1 minute.

    While stirring, gradually pour in the stock and stir until well blended. Bring just to the boil, then lower the heat to a simmer. Stir in the Worcestershire sauce and tomato purée/paste and simmer for 15 minutes. Taste. Depending on preference, add some lemon juice for more acidity or a pinch of sugar to sweeten, or both.

    Transfer to a blender and whizz until smooth. Set aside while you prepare the fries, according to the recipe above.

    To serve, reheat the curry sauce. Mound the fries on a platter and pour over the sauce. Serve immediately.

    Fries by Laura Washburn

    For more fantastic fries recipes, check out the new book Fries by Laura Washburn, available here.

    Happy Father's Day Dads!

    This post was posted in Competitions, Featured, News, Recipes, UK, What's new and was tagged with Comfort Food, Laura Washburn, fries

  • Posted on October 10, 2014

    Recipe for the Weekend

    Autumn has definitely arrived, and she’s brought with her flurries of leaves, shiny conkers and some rather unwelcome showers. So we’re very much looking forward to a cosy weekend, with perhaps a blustery walk in the park if the rain stays away. Simple and warming, this delicious casserole will be the perfect post-walk fare and it’s taken from our new title, A Gourmet Guide to Oil and Vinegar by Ursula Ferrigno. And don’t forget that you can enter our twitter competition to win a copy of this beautiful book.


    Nonna Ferrigno’s Chicken Casserole

    This recipe is revisited so frequently in my home, not just for its taste, but also for its ease of cooking. It is tasty, satisfying and also a one-pot meal, which is very useful for time-short mums. I have experimented over the years with various combinations, sometimes using smoky bacon, lardons or pancetta. All these are good variations, but not necessary.

    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

    2 tablespoons Italian ‘00’ flour

    8 chicken thighs, bone and skin on or off, depending on your preference

    3 tablespoons olive oil

    2 celery stalks, finely chopped

    1 medium carrot, diced

    1 red onion, diced

    150g chestnut/cremini mushrooms, coarsely chopped

    1 garlic glove, crushed

    3 tablespoons white wine vinegar

    2 sprigs rosemary, leaves finely chopped

    1 teaspoon dried mixed herbs

    3 bay leaves

    6 tablespoons Italian passata/strained tomatoes

    6 medium potatoes, peeled and quartered (not too small)

    Handful flat leafed parsley

    To serve:

    Focaccia or crusty bread

    Serves 8

    Add a little salt and pepper to the flour, and coat the chicken in it.

    Heat a flameproof casserole dish, add the olive oil and heat gently. Add the chicken, cook until coloured and remove. Add more oil if necessary and add the celery, carrot, onion, mushroom and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes until lightly golden. Add the chicken, vinegar, 500ml water, herbs, passata and potatoes. Season with salt and pepper.

    Simmer for 45 minutes, checking that the casserole is not drying up and stirring it periodically.

    Garnish with parsley and serve with focaccia or crusty bread to mop up the juices.


    A Gourmet Guide to Oil and Vinegar by Ursula Ferrigno is available here.

    Have a lovely weekend, and don't forget to enter our competition!

    This post was posted in Competitions, Featured, Recipes, UK, What's new and was tagged with olive oil, chicken, casserole, Comfort Food, recipe for the weekend, 2014, Oil, Vinegar, A Gourmet Guide to Oil and Vinegar, Ursula Ferrigno

  • Posted on September 26, 2014

    Recipe for the Weekend

    We’ve finally reached Friday and oh, what a week! With all the excitement from Bake Off, a crazy few days in the office and autumn hitting us over the head with a swift chill, we’re definitely ready for a relaxed weekend! Think warming comfort food as the leaves start to fall and easy leave-it-in-the-oven dinners while we get on with our weekends…

    We shared a delicious cinnamon, cider and apple doughnut recipe yesterday, so today we’ve continued the apple theme but have opted for something simple, savoury and oh so September… a ham and apple pie. Taken from the new Easy Kitchen book, Pies & Tarts, this recipe is sure to be very tasty and a great one to make for the family.

    ham and apple pie

    Serve this with a robust vegetable such as broccoli, cabbage or sprouts and boiled, buttered new potatoes. Cook in deep individual dishes if you have the time.

    For the suet crust pastry:

    225 g/1¾ cups plain/ all-purpose flour

    1/2 teaspoon salt

    50 g/2½ tablespoons lard

    50 g/4 tablespoons shredded beef or vegetable suet

    1 teaspoon dried mixed herbs

    2–3 tablespoons ice-cold water

    3–4 tablespoons milk, to glaze

    For the filling:

    450 g/1 lb. cooked ham, diced

    3 tablespoons plain/all-purpose flour, seasoned with salt and black pepper

    2 tablespoons soft light brown sugar

    ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

    ¼ teaspoon ground allspice

    450 g/1 lb. cooking apples, peeled, cored and quartered

    2 onions, thinly sliced

    300 ml/1¼ cups dry (hard) cider

    sea salt and freshly ground

    black pepper

    a 900-ml/1-quart pie dish

    a pie funnel

    Serves 4–6

    Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) Gas 6.

    To make the pastry, sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl, add the lard and rub in with your fingertips until combined. Stir in the suet and herbs and mix to a soft dough with just enough of the water to bind. Knead lightly until smooth, then leave to rest in a cool place until required.

    Toss the diced ham in the seasoned flour to lightly coat. Mix the sugar and spices together in a separate bowl.

    Put half the ham in the pie dish and cover with half the apples, then half the spice mixture and half the onion slices. Repeat these layers, seasoning between each one, then pour in the cider.

    On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry and make a small slit in the centre to fit over the pie funnel. Dampen the edges of the pie dish with a little milk and cover with the pastry. Brush the pastry with milk, set the pie dish on  a baking sheet and bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 180°C (350°F) Gas 4 and bake for a further hour until golden (covering the top with kitchen foil if you feel the pastry is becoming too dark).


    The Easy Kitchen: Pies & Tarts is available here.


    Have a wonderful and relaxing weekend everyone, and happy cooking!

    This post was posted in Featured, Featured, News, Recipes, Recipes, UK, US, What's new, What's new and was tagged with baking, cinnamon, Comfort Food, recipe for the weekend, simple, ham, Easy Kitchen, pie, 2014, bake off, Great British Bake Off

  • Posted on September 20, 2013

    Recipe for the Weekend

    This week's Recipe for the Weekend is taken from one of our new Autumn titles – Mac ‘n’ Cheese by Laura Washburn. It seems that we’ve all had to put the heating on this week and hunt out our coats and umbrellas; so now that autumn has truly arrived, the yummy pasta bakes in this book will satisfy those warm, comfort food cravings! The recipe that we are sharing with you today is a delicious version of the classic dish, with smoked haddock, spinach and nutmeg.


    Smoked Haddock & Spinach Macaroni Cheese

    Delicate smoked haddock and wilted spinach are a classic combination that needs nothing more than a light creamy sauce spiced with nutmeg to make the flavours sing, resulting in an impressive dish indeed. Lovely for a light dinner or even a weekend brunch.

    SERVES 6–8

    a handful of coarse sea salt

    500 g/1 lb. macaroni

    600 g/11⁄4 lbs. smoked haddock fillets

    2 tablespoons vegetable oil

    500 g/1 lb. fresh spinach

    15 g/1 tablespoon unsalted butter

    1 large shallot, finely chopped

    600 ml/21⁄2 cups double/heavy cream

    a pinch of grated nutmeg

    200 g/12⁄3 cups grated medium Cheddar

    50 g/1 cup fresh breadcrumbs

    fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

    Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil. Add the coarse sea salt, then let the water return to a rolling boil. Add the macaroni, stir well and cook according to the package instructions until very tender. Stir periodically to prevent the macaroni from sticking together. When cooked, drain, rinse well under running water and let drip dry in a colander.

    Arrange the haddock fillets in a microwaveable dish in a single layer, skin side down, and pour over just enough water to cover. Cover with clingfilm/plastic wrap and microwave on high for 4–5 minutes, or until the flesh flakes easily. Flake the fish, discard the skin and cooking liquid and remove any bones. Set aside.

    Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a deep frying pan/skillet. Add half the spinach and cook over high heat, stirring often, until wilted. Season lightly with salt and pepper, then transfer to a chopping board and spread out to cool. Repeat for the remaining spinach, then chop all the spinach coarsely and set aside in a large mixing bowl.

    Preheat the grill/broiler to medium–hot.

    In the same large skillet/frying pan, melt the butter and heat the remaining oil. Add the shallot and cook over high heat for 2–3 minutes until just golden, stirring occasionally. Add the cream, nutmeg and a good pinch of salt and bring just to the boil, then reduce the heat.

    Add the haddock and cheese to the spinach in the bowl and pour over the hot cream mixture. Stir well to melt the cheese, then add the macaroni and mix well. Taste and adjust the seasoning.

    Transfer the macaroni mixture to a baking dish and spread evenly. Top with a good grinding of black pepper and sprinkle the breadcrumbs evenly over the top. Grill/broil for 5–10 minutes until the top is crunchy and golden brown. Serve immediately.

    Mac 'n' Cheese by Laura Washburn is available here.

    Have a lovely weekend everybody and happy cooking!


    This post was posted in Featured, News, News, UK, US, What's new, What's new and was tagged with 2013, baking, Comfort Food, recipe for the weekend, mac 'n' cheese, Laura Washburn, spinach, light dinner, cheese

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