Well, Si King and Dave Myers aka the Hairy Bikers have a new book and TV series of the same name: Hairy Bikers’ Family Cookbook – Mums Know Best! The TV series started before the book was out, and it's a good one, Mums, families and their recipes, plus recipe fairs, it’s great to watch.
I’ve always been interested in other peoples’ food, and their family recipes, you know the ones that will pass from generation to generation. Si and Dave are the perfect pair to go on this journey of discovery, they have stuck to their guns and been true to the family recipes, instead of trying to jazz them up. I like that, something that was good fifty years ago should still be good now. Some are Dave and Si’s family recipes and some are from families that they have visited on the show. It’s not all British either, of course there are British recipes, but also from further afield, families from other countries, with different foods that are now cooked as family food here. I can’t wait to try Yasmeen’s Spinach, Carrot and Potato Pakoras, they look like the real deal, and so good.
The book is divided up into six chapters: Family Favourites, Show-off Food, Good Simple suppers, Birthday Treats, Sunday Dinner and Picnics. I’ve always liked the hairy bikers, and have enjoyed all their books, but this is the one I’ve cooked from. I’m enjoying the book a lot, and I was given it as a belated Christmas present from my own little one, she has been watching the programmes with me, and has been very interested herself!
Anyhow down to business, here’s the first batch of what I’ve been cooking from this book. I’m sure there will be a second post from this book in the future!
I couldn’t believe how much cheese was in this! It was soooo rich. It’s a good idea though, and since I made the one in the book I’ve brought life to leftover mash by adding some grated mature white cheddar cheese and baking it in the oven. I used considerably less cheese though!
Traditional Rice Pudding
We as a family love rice pudding, and this one made a huge dish of it. It was good, although I’ll add a bit more sugar next time as I have a big sweet tooth!
A milder mushroom risotto, where the chicken stock is paramount to the end result. Lovely.
Cottage Pie with Cheesy Mash
This was gorgeous, just the thing for the cold January night I made it on.
These are not rocky road as I know them, but sort of mars bar crispies with crumbled shortbread and marshmallows added in for the bumpy effect. The shortbread was really good here, unexpected buttery, almost creaminess it added to the bars. Quite compulsive, I could have eaten a lot more than was good for me!
EDIT: I've made this a few times since, and now make it in a 7 inch aquare tin and top with 200g melted milk chocolate.
Sweet and Sour Pork Hong Kong Style
This was good, mine didn’t look like the picture in the book, but the pork was tender and the batter crispy, mmm. I added in some skinned peppers for a veggie element.
Key Lime Pie
We didn’t like this one that much, the filling was way too sour, the sweet base and meringue topping just couldn’t cope with the sour middle for us.
A classic. I cooked the shortbread a bit too long, so it is darker than normal, but still very good.
Pork BBQ Ribs
At last a BBQ sauce that doesn’t have chilli in it! These were lovely, I’ll try the sauce with chicken too.
Steak and Ale Pie
This was really delicious. Loved by all.
I so wanted to make these the minute I saw the picture in the book. We used to have these when I was little, I know them as Sailors’ Hats. I’m not sure why they were called sailors hats though! Anyway they were beautiful little biscuits, both to look at and to eat, yum!
Here are the recipes for Rocky Road and Empire Biscuits in a link from the BBC (Scroll down).