Friday, 2 May 2008

Tonight's recipe

Jenny is at a high-powered Darwin College celebratory dinner and won't be home for ages, so I cooked myself some dinner and am idling the evening away waiting for her. Actually, I'm not idling it away entirely at all, I'm doing stuff. My web-page for the Washington DC weekend is progressing well and I'm catching up on my friends' blogs, many of whom I've not visited for weeks. Sorry to all of you.

So I treated myself to a grass-fed, organic Aberdeen Angus rib-eye steak from the local farm shop. First I did couscous, as there isn't a potato in the place, and the couscous could sit cooked, under a cover, for 5 mins, without coming to harm. I took the seeds from half a dozen cardamoms, crushed them and threw them in the couscous before cooking in the normal way. I have to tell you, the flavour was subtle, but worth repeating. Very good indeed, though I say so myself.

The steak I just peppered and fried in olive oil, but I did also make a sauce for it. Chopped up a couple of dried apricots, a couple of dates and added about a tablespoon of sultanas. Fried them up in butter for a bit, then threw in some dry sherry. Added a bit of water, covered and left for 5 mins to simmer. If it had been too liquid I'd have taken the lid of to reduce it a bit, but it didn't need it. I imagine the selection of dried fruit you use will depend on a blend of personal taste and what's in the larder (or does that come to the same thing?)

God, I'm a genius!

Oh, OK, and frozen peas as there isn't a vegetable in the house either. Hey, come on, we were away all last weekend!

Accompanied by a bottle of 1993 Señorio de Guadianeja Gran Reserva Cab Sauv, most of which has gone, which accounts for the rather lackadaisical attitude to what I've written. Hic!

And before I go, I can hear the strains of James Taylor seeping up from BBC4 downstairs. I got a shock, I can tell you, when I switched over. I knew he was on, but you have to realise, I have a vinyl lp downstairs which I bought new in about 1975, and he had hair on his head then. Lots of it. I've not seen, heard, nor thought of him since, before tonight. It was a shock, believe me!


Sparx said...

You always have great recipes - will try the cardamom trick in couscous next time. Am a veggie so the steak idea isn't really appealing but I do cook chicken for my son sometimes and might copy the dried fruit marinade idea...

Rob Clack said...

The cardamom works well with plain basmati rice, too, I discovered last night. I waited until it was almost cooked before adding the spice, as I didn't think leaving it to cook for ages would work well.