I think we had a bit of summer here this morning, but it only lasted ten minutes. The rest of the time it has been miserable, not a lot of incentive to go anywhere, so I stayed in and did a little simple experimental cooking, and stuffed my face. First off, this was my lunch. I bought a packet of Staffordshire Oatcakes (yellow sticker), spread some margarine and garlic puree on two of them, and sprinkled with mature grated cheese.
Next add yellow sticker spinach, roll up into sausage shapes, sprinkle a bit of cheese on the top and microwave for a few minutes.
Served on a bed of spinach, with cucumber, sliced raw mushrooms, beetroot, pickled onions, grated carrot, and celery sticks. I had some Value Dip left which finished it off nicely. All washed down with a can of pear cider. Scrumptious.
As I was browsing the shelves at Tesco yesterday, I came across this packet of Polenta for 75p. I like to read the backs of packets sometimes, to see if it is something I might like to try. I hadn't heard of this before, it looks interesting.
It can be fried, grilled, baked, boiled, and microwaved, and it can be served sweet or savoury, so it's very versatile. Well it's worth a go for 75p.
I googlied it and there are lots of recipes to choose from, so with some ideas to play around with, I decided to make up my own recipe. I chopped two small onions, and some small mushrooms, and cooked them in my new pan, in sesame seed oil. Then I added some garlic puree, wholegrain mustard, lemon juice, and a bit of grated cheese. I cut a slice of polenta, cubed it and added that to the mix. Let it cook for a few minutes on a low gas, then just before serving add some plain yogurt. Serve on a bed of spinach, with chopped cucumber and celery. It was flippin lovely. I thought the polenta would dissolve and fall apart but it didn't. It was kind of softish, not chewey, and the texture complimented the mushrooms, with the onions being slightly crunchy. You could serve it with a microwaved spud, or some pasta would be nice.
If you fancy having a go at cooking with polenta, here are some recipes. I think it is mainly bought as a loose grain which you cook for yourself, but I think this ready made stuff is perfectly adequate. I'm going to make a pudding with it for my next experiment. If anyone already uses it, let me know what you do with it.
I never watch cookery programmes, because I don't follow recipes, but I've just watched the Hairy Bikers Vegetarian programme, and it was very interesting. There is an article on the Vegetarian Society, and a film about an Indian family who hold dinner parties for paying guests, serving up vegetarian food. It looked delicious, and has made me want to experiment a bit more with different ingredients. I have to say though that I won't be following recipes to the letter, but just pinching a few ideas. I still need to keep my cooking simple, as I don't want to become a slave to the kitchen. Just trying a few different things would be nice.