Sunday, November 08, 2009

Autumn rain and Apples for Jam
I think it was about 6am Sunday morning when the sound of pouring rain first registered. By 10am my Sunday morning slumber had ended, but the rain had not.

It was a somewhat typical autumn day, grey and rainy but unusually warm. Yellow-orange leaves were clumped here and there on the ground outside, which made walking particularly difficult as leaves get awfully slippery when they are wet! It was a day that was beautiful in its own way but the grey tinge in the sky meant our evening meal had to be something particularly warming and comforting …..

Enter Apples for Jam – By Tessa Kiros

I am a huge fan of Tessa. I have four of her 5 cookbooks and I think she is brilliant. She is a devoted foodie, who has gathered together a repertoire of recipes that all seem to stem from family influences. Apples for Jam is a book devoted entirely to meals that would appeal to kids (not to be confused with a children’s cookbook). Tessa has very fond food memories from her own childhood and in Apples for Jam you get the feeling she is trying to create the same kind of memories for her own children… and by extension all of her readers and their kids as well!!

So on this rainy autumn day we decided to try Tessa’s Lamb and Green Bean Casserole (pg 190).

We found a Lamb shoulder roast that was on sale – It was a little bit fatty but looked as though it would suit a slow cooked stew. I trimmed a large portion of the fat off the roast before carving in into largish chunks and browning in a healthy amount of olive oil (you need to have a saucepan that can go on the stove top and then into the oven).

Once the meat was brown we added a generous dollop of butter (!!), chopped tomatoes, cinnamon, onions and 500mls of water. After seasoning with salt we popped the dish in the oven and an hour later we added the green beans. It was then back in the oven for a further hour. With very little preparation and minimal intervention during the cooking process, this dish nearly made itself!

So after two hours of cooking my chief recipe taster, a visiting friend with an inclination to musical theatre, and me sat down to enjoy Lamb and Green Bean Casserole served with delicious roast potatoes and a Julie Andrews classic... Thoroughly Modern Millie.

The meal was lovely. The lamb was melt in your mouth soft, the beans still surprisingly firm and the sauce/liquid flavoursome. The combination of warming lamb casserole, a silly but entertaining musical and lots of frivolous banter ended this rainy London evening on a satisfying high note!

Until next week ……..

1 comment:

  1. I love that movie, especially the part when they have to dance their way up the elevator...such a classic!! I love the sound of those morrocan meatballs - yummo!!