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pumpkin curry

Sautee two sliced onions in oil. When transluscent add one teaspoon finely chopped ginger and two cloves of crushed garlic. Sautee another minute and add 2 cups of 2 cm cubes of raw pumpkin and a 800 gm can of crushed tomnatoes. Add one teaspoon of whole cumin seeds and one teaspoon curry powder. Put a lid on the pot and simmer for twenty minutes or until pumpkin softens. Add one can of chickpeas and one cup of sliced courgette (optional). Cook another ten minutes.

Seasoned Salt from ibn Warraq

16 parts salt
4 parts ground sumac
1 part ground juniper berries
4 parts ground pomegranite seeds (a.k.a. anardhana)
3 parts cumin, ground
2 parts asa foetida (a.k.a. hing)
4 parts polished sesame sees, whole
2 parts nigella seeds, whole

Measurements are by volume and very approximate.

I got the sumac in Mediterranean Foods, the juniper in Mercato, and all the other spices in Yogiji.

Rice for a crowd

Here are the full instructions for how I do fluffy rice in the oven.

2kg* long-grain white rice (I like Basmati, but other long-grain rice is fine)
60ml oil or 60g butter, melted (optional)
1Tbsp salt (optional) + any other seasonings you like**
3.5l boiling water, stock, or whatever you like to cook rice in**

Put the rice, fat, and seasonings into a full-size 4 or 6 inch deep hotel pan or similar. Give it a bit of a stir to distribute everything. Add the boiling water and cover tightly with foil (or cover with foil and put the lid on, if you have a lid). Bake 40 minutes at 350F/180C, then uncover, fluff and serve. Makes ~40 meal portions or ~60+ feast portions.

*To halve this recipe, use a half-size pan and reduce cooking time to 25-30 min. Don't try to double it-- if you need more, use more pans.

**For saffron rice, put the saffron in a cup of water and bring to the boil. Let it stand 5 minutes, and then combine with enough boiling water to make up 3.5l. One 1g packet of saffron is more than sufficient for 2kg rice.

almond pudding from Caliph's Kitchen

> Take 1 raãl (1 pound) walnuts and almonds [altogether] and finely pound them. [Put them aside] Break 30 eggs into a big bowl, add to them 2 raãls (2 pounds) refined pounded sugar and the ground nuts. Beat mixture until well blended [and set it aside].
> Take a clean pot and pour into it 10 raãls (20 cups) fresh milk that has just been drawn and is still warm. Light a fire underneath it and boil it down to 5 raãls (10 cups). Add the egg mixture to it and stir it briskly and constantly until it thickens. At this stage, you can [further] sweeten the custard with some honey. You should never stop stirring the pudding until it thickens and pot is taken away from the fire.

Grind 140 gm almonds (or 200 if you have them), add one cup of white sugar and stir in 6 eggs. Heat 1 can (1.5 cups evaporated milk) and half a cup of normal milk in a put til hot. Add the egg mixture and stir. much stir, do not get distracted. If it starts to curdle dump in 1/4 cup of cream. cool, then chill in the fridge.

Nov. 3rd, 2010

I thought I'd write this down, since I was reading an article about feast planning that relies on the most conventional division of foods into meat, carbs, vegetables, etc. We don't do it that way at all. Here's a rough explanation of food groups according to the Peerless Kitchen. I thought I'd write this down, since I was reading an article about feast planning that relies on the most conventional division of foods into meat, carbs, vegetables, etc.  We don't do it that way at all.  Here's a rough explanation of food groups according to the Peerless Kitchen.



Tastes Best With

Not So Good With

Dry Brown

Mainly roasted and broiled meats, but also some non-meat items such as felafels, substantial fritters, meatballs and rissoles, sausages, etc.

Wet Crunchy

Dry Crunchy
Plain Starchy (too dry!)

Wet Brown

Mainly meat stews and tajines, but also vegetarian dishes of a similar form such as eggplant tajine or chick peas.

Wet Crunchy
Plain Starchy

Rich Creamy (too rich!)
Soft (too soft!)

Rich Creamy

Includes a wide range of egg/dairy/almond milk dishes-- lozyns, cheese tarts, rice puddings, scrambled eggs, blancmanges, etc.


Wet Brown (too rich!)
Plain Starchy (too pasty!)

Wet Crunchy

Many raw vegetables, crunchy fruits such as apples, crisp pickles, sauerkraut, salads, etc.

Dry Brown,
Wet Brown



Many kinds of cooked vegetables and fruit, plus non-crunchy raw fruits.

Dry Brown,

Wet Brown (too mushy!)

Dry Crunchy

Wafers, biscuits, meringues,etc.

Everything but Dry Brown or Plain Starchy

Dry Brown (too dry!)
Plain Starchy (too bland!)

Plain Starchy

Non-creamy rice and noodles, bread, couscous, etc.

Wet Brown

Dry Brown (too dry!)

Condiments and Sauces

All kinds of mustards and sauces, plus a few other savoury items such as roasted onions



Sally Lunn Cake

Per usual, I suggest reading this all the way through before starting. Makes one 10 inch round loaf or one bundt loaf

For the dough:
1 cup milk, scalded and cooled to lukewarm
60g unsalted butter, cut into bits
2 Tbsp sugar
3 1/3c high-grade flour (N. American readers can use all purpose)
one envelope (or 2-1/2 tsp) dry yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
zest of 1 lemon, finely grated
pinch of mace
2 large eggs, lightly beaten

For the glaze:
2 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon sugar

Put the milk into the bowl of a stand mixer and add the yeast. When the yeast has dissolved, add the egss, 2c of the flour and all of the salt, yeast, mace, and lemon zest. With the dough hook, beat at medium speed for 4 to 5 minutes, or until well-combined and smooth, scraping the bowl down as needed.

Reduce the speed to low and add the remaining or 1 1/3 cups flour, and beat until fully incorporated. Continue to beat 7 or 8 minutes, or until smooth and elastic. The dough should be fairly sticky.

Scrape the dough into a large, lightly oiled bowl. Cover with a tea towel or plastic bag and let rise ina warm place for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until doubled in bulk.

Butter and flour a tall-sided, round 10-inch pan or a bundt pan. If the pan has a flat bottom, line it with a round of baking paper or greaseproof paper. With flouerd hands, deflate the dough and form it into a flattish disc and transfer to the pan (poke a hole in the middle for a bundt pan. Cover and let rise at room temperature until well risen and crowning above the pan, about 45 to 60 minutes. Thirty minutes before baking, preheat the oven to 425°F/210°C. Bake 15 to 20 minutes, or until a rich golden-brown on top.

While baking, heat the milk and sugar for the glaze together in a small pan, until the sugar has dissolved. When the bread is fully baked and just removed from the oven, gently brush the glaze over the top of the bread. You will probably not need all of it.

Cool the bread in the pan for 15 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool thoroughly. Slice into wedges and serve warm; alternatively, split into three horizontal layers and fill with clotted cream for an authentic British teatime snack. (It's also good sliced with creme fraiche and jam).


mmm meatloaf

Makes a large meatloaf.
Sautee to medium sliced onions til soft, set aside. Cook 200 gm streaky bacon, cool and chop.
In a bowl mix two eggs, 3/4 cup breadcrumbs, 1/2 cup bbq sauce, bacon, onion and 1 kg pork mince. Squish with hands to mix. Line a loaf tin with baking paper. Squodge in meat mixture. Pour more bbq sauce on top. Bake at 180 degrees C for about 75 minutes. Really good cold in a sandwich with gherkins.

Gibanica Recipe

This is the recipe for the large cheese pie served at Amy's birthday.  I recommend reading the recipe all the way through before starting.


  • 1 pkg phyllo pastry (375g or similar)
  • 500g cottage cheese
  • 200g feta
  • 250g sour cream
  • 1/3c milk
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 1/2c butter, melted
Seive the cottage cheese and feta or give them a whizz in the food processor 'til reasonably smooth.  Stir in the sour cream, milk and egg yolks.  Beat tthe egg whites until stiff but not dry and fold into the cheese mixture.

Lightly oil a 23 x 33 x 5cm (or similar) baking pan.  Line with eight full sheets of phyllo, putting in two sheets, then brushing with butter, then repeating.  Don't worry about untidyness-- just let the pastry hang over the sides of the pan. Spread about 1/6 of the filling onto the pastry-- don't worry if it's not perfectly even.  Cover the filling with six sheets of phyllo, cutting the sheets to fit the pan and brushing with butter after every two sheets.  Now repeat the last two steps until you run out of filling, finishing with a layer of phyllo.  Put a couple more sheets of phyllo on top and fold the overhanging pastry from the first layer over the top-- you might have to roll it up a little.  Brush the remaining butter over the top.  Bake at 180C for one hour.  Serve hot or cold.  Makes 24 small servings or 8-12 big ones.

High Gothic French Feast (Proposed Menu)

Most of the dishes have been sourced from Du Fait de Cuisine, Le Menagier de Paris and Ouverture de Cuisine with a couple from other sources.
The first and second courses will be coming out very close together, with a long gap after the third course so that the entertainment has sufficent time to do it's thing.

First Course
Red Salad
Green Salad
Salted Olives
Fresh Fruit

Second Course
Pea Pottage
Hungarian Chicken Stew
Scallops with White Garlic Sauce
Mushroom Pies

Third Course
Roast Beef with Green sauce and ?? sauce
Carrots with honeyed walnuts
Grilled Fish with ?? sauce
Leafy Tart
Crayfish (if we can get them)

Fourth Course

Issue de table
Fruit (fresh and candied)

Savoury Muffins

I will delete this if I deem them a failure:
preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius

in a big bowl:
2 eggs
1 cup oil
2 cups milk

you will then need to crumble 30 gm of blue cheese
finely chop 3/4 cup celery
1/4 cup spring onion
3 slices of ham (all fat removed), chopped
200 gm grated tasty cheese

Add 4 cups of flour, 4 teaspoons of baking powder, 2 teaspoons of paprika and dump in the the other stuff. mix til just blended. Spoon into standard sized muffin cups not the silly giant ones, 20 - 25 minutes.