7. Broccoli & Stilton Soup
I made this one for Hubby as he absolutely loves soup, and he is pretty keen on blue cheese as well. This fast soup used 1kg of frozen broccoli, and is basically a simmered soup but with Stilton (blue cheese) added in while simmering, as opposed to at the end. Nigella also added in dried thyme. It blended into a smooth soup and made a vat of it. It was a bit strong for me, and I wasn’t convinced about the thyme, but I didn’t make it for me (just felt I should give it a go!) and Hubby liked it a lot, strong and gutsy and the blue cheese taste was strong.
8. Coq Au Riesling
I sort of de-expressed this one a bit, because I can’t get boneless skinless chicken thighs where I live, so had to do a bit of DIY boning and skinning. I’ve done it before, and although I hadn’t forgotten how to do it, it did take me a little while to do. I had about 14 thighs, and the first 6 took me about 20 minutes, but the other 8 took only about 5 minutes – once I established a routine for doing them it became quite fast.
The chicken is simmered in a whole bottle of Riesling along with bacon, mushrooms, leek, garlic oil and bay leaves. At the end of the recipe Nigella says this is best the day after it’s made, so I planned for this and made the stew one night ready for reheating the next night. I liked this a lot, and didn’t add cream in this time, but I will try it next time just to see what it’s like. I served it with buttered noodles, and the sprinkling of dill in the recipe, and the dill went really well. I don’t think I’ve ever made anything with dill and chicken together (lots of dill and fish though!), and it worked well with the wine-y chicken and mushrooms. I re-heated the stew and cooked the noodles after a day out and it provided a lovely comforting supper, for what was a cold Autumn evening. Will do this one again for sure.
9. Breakfast Bars
These are a quick measure and stir then bake job. They make a sort of dry flapjack, or granola in bar form. I replaced the peanuts in the recipe with chopped pecans, there was also coconut, dried cranberries, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds – the liquid part being a tin of condensed milk. Nigella said in the book that these get better and better as they sit, and it’s true, they seem to have matured over a couple of days into a deeper taste than on the day they were made. They are really fruity, oaty, nutty and filling, my kind of breakfast on the run, mmm.