Thursday, 5 April 2012

Notes on Med Veg

Mediterranean vegetables are my favourites, to the point that I'm sad to be British. I'm sorry but cabbages and turnips simply can't compare with shiny purple aubergines, scarlet tomatoes, taut crimson peppers and aromatic chillies. Paired with basil, bay, thyme and oregano, it's impossible to create a dull tasting dish.
I've not had alot of success growing aubergines and peppers in the past and I'm hoping Zia Mays can enlighten both me and the workshop participants. My tomatoes have always worked a treat though. Is there anything better than a home grown tomato?
It's going to be fun for me to create a light supper; I haven't made ratatouille in a while and will once again struggle with the big ratatouille debate which rages over continents: add tomatoes or not? I think a ratatouille shouldn't be too sloppy.
I may make pepperonata, red peppers slowly braised in onion and garlic. Bread will be needed to mop up the slick juices.
Baba ghanoush, a recipe from my book. Not too much tahini is the secret here. And properly sear the skins of the aubergines to get that smoky smell.
Or maybe a melanzana parmigiana...this takes a long time and I'm generally forced to consume a bottle of red during the making. Don't mind me if I'm pissed when you arrive.
I think we should start with a Bloody Mary but with a twist perhaps as a soup or a jelly?
Chocolate covered aubergine slices and candied chilli peppers for dessert possibly?
Shopping advice for buying tomatoes:
Buy tomatoes that feel heavy in your hand.
Store them carefully, in fact do not put them in the fridge, their flavour turns mealy.
Don't worry about funny shapes, do worry about soft spots.
Smell them! Good tomatoes should have that earthy, acidic, greenish smell.

Workshop and supper on April 15th £45. Starts at 2pm.
Book here:

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