Saturday, 29 November 2014

Winter Warmers 1: Chicken Paprikás with Garlic and Bacon Nokedli

This is the first in a series of three meals which are perfect for the cold winter months. The first two feed into the third (a rather fetching Seafood Risotto) by providing the ultimate stock, so you can try making all three in one week to get the most out of them. The next step is the Moules Frites.

Before my recent trip to Hungary, the only reference point I had for paprikás was from When Harry Met Sally. So I didn’t exactly class myself as an expert on the matter. But it did teach me two important lessons. First, make sure it doesn’t have too much pepper on it. Second, don’t leave Budapest without trying it.

When I sat myself down in an empty basement restaurant hidden up some side street at too-damn-early-to-be-ordering-dinner o’clock, I was presented with a rich, creamy chicken stew served side-by-side with tiny buttered dumplings. This traditional accompaniment, nokedli (also called spätzle), is as much a part of the dish as the paprika, so I’m including them in this recipe. That’s as far as tradition goes around here though, because I’ve messed around with the dish and added some ideas of my own.

If the nokedli sound like more effort than you're willing to put in, rice is a great substitute. One thing’s for sure though, you won’t go Hungary after this meal! Eh? Eh?

Your jokes are bad and you should feel bad!

Saturday, 8 November 2014

Shredded Chicken, Mango and Avocado Salad

Did you know that a salad is basically defined as a bunch of raw (or cooked) stuff, cut up and served cold (except when it's served warm)? Seriously. Look it up.

Did you also know that a salad is basically the single easiest meal to prepare? Well it is. If you want the most effortless job at a potluck, volunteer to make a salad. It’s also got the added bonus of carrying really low expectations, so when you actually turn up with a sexy number like this one, even your dad will be proud of you.

That’s all I’ve ever wanted…