These Are a Few of My (New) Favourite Things

Published / Written by Anna Scott / No Comments Yet

It was only when I was cooking stir fry the other evening that I realised it had been quite a while since I last rustled one up. It used to be one of my weekly easy mid-week meals, but these things happen on occasions, dishes fall by the way side to be replaced by something else and so on and so forth as the cycle continues – if we were to cook the same things all the time then we’d soon get bored of food in general. So it got me thinking about the sort of things I’ve been using more and more recently to replace the old favourites and bring them to your attention on the off chance that you might like to give them a go too…

Of course, it’s no coincidence that the cyclical nature of these recipe changes are somewhat seasonal. I’ve come to the conclusion that in extreme weather, be it hot or cold, my efforts tend to wane a bit because the last thing I want to do is be stuck in the kitchen for too long when it’s freezing/roasting outside. In short, I’m a bit lazy at this time of year and my cooking reflects that.

This is why one of my new favourites right now is soup, or more specifically, pumpkin soup – it is easy and tasty and hot and these are three things that you want from a meal (the first point being most important if you’re the one cooking said meal). If I know I’m going to cook this one evening, I usually stop off at the shops on my way home and treat everyone to a decent loaf of crusty bread to eat with it, because with the money saved on the affordable ingredients, I feel this is more than justified. And when serving with a homemade soup, I reckon the crusty bread has to be lightly toasted with plenty of butter and anyone who says otherwise needs to take a long hard look at their life choices.

Pumpkin soup in white plate on vintage slate chalk board

Another thing I have been making with increasing regularity also involves toasted crusty bread with lots of butter (come on, it is winter, after all). For someone who loathed eggs for the first 16 years of her life, I eat a heck of a lot of the things now and I’ve recently discovered a way to make them even more delicious. Baked eggs are not a new invention and for some unknown reason, I’ve never bothered with them up until now, but I have to say, baked eggs on top of a spicy tomato sauce, combined with the aforementioned bread for dipping purposes is one of my absolutely favourite things right now.

To make the sauce, I fry some finely chopped onion, garlic and red pepper then add some chopped up chorizo before emptying a couple of tins of tomatoes into the pan, then cook this down and season it. However, if you’re cooking for more than two people, the actual baking of the eggs might prove a bit problematic in terms of space in the pan so in this instance, just fry or poach the eggs and serve on top of the sauce on the plate, and don’t forget to season the yolks with salt and plenty of freshly ground black pepper. I could wax lyrical for days on the qualities of a perfectly cooked eggs with its runny yolk and soft whites but I’ll spare you that today and instead insist that you try this dish on a winter evening when just-above zero effort is required in the kitchen.

I know these dishes will probably fall by the way in a few months’ time, like they all do in the end, but by that time I’ll have some more new favourite things to share with you…