Name: Jenny

Posts by Jenny:

    Recipe: Super Coconutty Blueberry Muffins

    January 22nd, 2015

    I really don’t understand people who get away with not eating breakfast in the morning. I am a complete and utter nightmare when I am hungry. I am basically a mashup of all those snickers adverts rolled into one 28 year old sulking trembling mess. Usually I am quite good at shoving at least a couple of slices of cold toast (if not better) down my throat before running out the front door, but for some reason I have been failing at even this some days in 2015. I am not joking when I say I am pretty useless when I am having a sugar low, and particularly first thing on a shoot you have to be really with it to get everything up and running in time for the first shot. Winter has been particularly stressful as the hours of natural light that you have to shoot with are so short, yet you’re expected to get as much done as you would do in a day that has four-five more workable hours in. Long story short – you need to be on your A game and hungry and unfocused is not really an option.

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    So I have packed my freezer out with some grab and go refined sugar and gluten free muffins for days when I am less organised than I should be. AKA days where the snooze button and a streak of liquid eyeliner take precedence over feeding myself. I have packed them full of lots of fruit to make them sweet and coconut flour, because, well I had some in my cupboard after a shoot and I thought what the hell. I’m also still on the coconut oil band wagon, even more so after spending a day last week with the lovely Hemsley sisters sharing why they love the product so much and some of their recipes they use it in. That was such an inspiring day, they have such an approachable view on cooking and eating. I particularly love their idea of big batch cooking and then doing a food swap with friends. The whole day was great, and it was amazing to actually meet/remeet/not-quite-meet some of the lovely girls behind some of the blogs I read (top with cinnamon/shiny thoughts/Rachel Phipps).

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    These muffins are the easiest thing to make, you just need a bowl, a fork (and a whisk if you’re being fancy) and a muffin pan. They are a great way to use up any browning bananas lingering in your fruit bowl, which as I have already said is a problem in my flat. The minute quantity of coconut flour sounds like a mistake but it is really absorbent and expands as soon as you add it to the banana and oil. Thrown in a bag with a thermos of black coffee and you are ready to go, not matter how much of your walk to work you have to do at a light jog.

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    One Year Ago: Peanut Butter and Jam Sandwich Cake
    Two Years Ago: Cake Balls
    Three Years Ago: Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

    Super Coconutty Blueberry Muffins

    makes 6 recipe by Jenny Brown

    Ingredients

    2 very ripe medium sized bananas

    1 tsp vanilla

    1 egg

    50ml melted coconut oil (I will just throw it on a radiator until enough of it melted to pour out what I need)

    30g coconut flour

    1 tsp baking powder

    pinch of salt (I like pink Himalayan salt - I got loads for Christmas!)

    100g blueberries

    Instructions

    1. Preheat your oven to 175C (fan assisted) and line a muffin tin, this is quite a moist mixture so I recommend using cupcake cases).
    2. Using a fork mash up your banana, don’t worry too much if there are a few lumps.
    3. Add the melted coconut oil, egg and and vanilla and beat for about a minute, you will see the mixture get slightly lighter in colour.
    4. Add the dry ingredients (coconut flour, egg, and baking powder) and whisk together, then fold through the blueberries.
    5. Split between your cupcake cases and bake in the middle of the oven for 20 minutes, turning half way through. The top should be golden brown and an inserted skewer should come out clean.
    6. Leave to cool in the tin for 5-10 minutes before removing and letting to cool to room temperature on a wire rack.
    7. Store in an airtight tub for up to about half a week, or if freezing wrap individually for a quick breakfast.
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    To keep up with my cookbook new years resolution see the full list here.

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    Recipe: Pandan Madeleines with Lime Curd

    January 15th, 2015

    I can’t believe that I got to cook for and meet one of my foodie heros last week, who’s latest cookbook has been sitting on my coffee table since Christmas.  I may have the coolest job ever.  Last week my boss was the resident chef at a pop up restaurant in Marylebone. The Vietnamese menu was fantastic, I nibbled on leftovers as much as I could.  I hadn’t realised how much I missed the humour and camaraderie of working in a team of people.  The constant joking and teasing (‘don’t mess up that ice cream cake it’s for Yotam Ottoleghi’ was whispered over my shoulder more than once – even on the days he wasn’t attending) and the support from experienced staff as I found my feet on the steep learning curve.  It’s a week I won’t forget in a hurry, but at the same time the whole experience is blurred together in a haze.  Dinner service sped by in a flash, every night I was shocked when after the last plate of dessert went out that the time has fast forwarded in a blur from 7.30pm to gone 11.

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    I wanted to share with you one of the dishes from the five course menu, but having helped make it all five days in a row for several hundred people I couldn’t quite bring myself to make it again in my own time.  So instead, here is a play on the dessert, using some of the same flavours to create a decadent sugary breakfast instead (one of my favourite weekend indulgences)with a Vietnamese twist.  Frances occupation of Vietnam in the 19th and 20th centuries introduced a lot of french cooking into the local cuisine.  Bahn mi, a baguette filled with Vietnamese herbs and meats being an obvious example.

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    One of my favourite French breakfasts is Madeleines (and croissants… and pain au chocolat… and brioche…). I’ve flavoured them here with pandan, you can buy the extract in some asian supermarkets, or it’s really easy to make yourself from the leaves (you can buy them in the Vietnamese shops on Mare Street, Hackney).  Pandan has quite a difficult to describe flavour, it’s floral and citrusy with a hint that’s almost grassy whilst being quite delicate which makes it work wonderfully with the light sponge of madeleines.  To add a tart aspect, as on their own I find these little cakes a little too sweet, I’ve made a simple lime curd.  By replacing the usual butter with coconut oil it creates a tropical flavour without being overpowering, or changing the texture or consistency.  If you don’t have any coconut oil (but you should, it’s the best ingredient/makeup remover/moisturiser/hairmask!) you can swap it like for like with unsalted butter.

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    One Year Ago: Clementine Cake inspired by The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
    Two Years Ago: Asparagus Soup
    Three Years Ago: Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

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    Pandan Madeleines with Lime and Coconut Curd

    madeleine recipe adapted from Bread, Cake, Doughnut, Pudding makes 12 curd recipe by Jenny Brown makes 250ml

    Ingredients

    madeleines:

    80g pandan leaves

    25g clear honey

    80g butter plus extra for greasing

    2 eggs

    75g caster sugar

    10g demerara sugar

    80g plain flour plus extra for dusting

    5g baking powder

    icing sugar for decoration

    curd:

    zest and juice of 2 limes

    110g golden caster sugar

    3 egg yolks

    50g coconut oil

    Instructions

    1. Chop the pandan leaves into 1-2 inch chunks and place in a blender with 150ml water. Blend until smooth and then pass through a sieve. Pour into a bottle and store in the fridge for up to two weeks.
    2. Over a low heat melt together the butter and honey, remove from the heat and allow to cool a little.
    3. Beat together the eggs and sugars in a stand mixer for 5 minutes until light and foamy and tripled in sized.
    4. Using a spatula fold through the butter and honey, making sure to scrape to the bottom of the bowl as this is where most of the butter sinks to. Next sift in the flour and baking powder and fold through. Finally pour 75ml of the pandan extract into the bowl and stir through, the mixture should turn a light green.
    5. Cover in clingfilm and leave in the fridge overnight to rest - or for at least 4 hours.
    6. Preheat the oven to 180C (Fan), grease and dust your madeleine tray (I use this one ). Spoon about 1tbsp of mixture into each shell, so they are almost completely full. Bake for 10-11 minutes until golden brown and an inserted skewer comes out clean.
    7. Serve hot straight from the oven, with a light dusting of icing sugar.
    8. Place your jar and lid in a pot of boiling water to sterilize.
    9. Reserving the zest, tip the rest of the ingredients into a heavy bottom pan and place over a medium heat.
    10. Whisk constantly until the curd begins to thicken and it starts to boil (about 5 minutes). As soon as you see the first bubble remove from the heat. Stir through the lime zest.
    11. Carefully remove the jar from the water, making sure to drain it the best you can. Pour the hot curd into the jar (I like this small one ), and screw the lid on. Tip the jar upside down, so the hot curd covers the inside of the lid, this helps to sterilise it further. Leave to cool to room temperature, then keep in the fridge for up to two weeks.
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    Recipe: Speculaas Banana Bread

    January 8th, 2015

    Happy New Year I hope you’ve had a good one so far! I spent the first day of 2015 curled up on my sofa surviving one of the worst hangovers of my life, the clinging remainder of a fantastic (Mexican themed) see off to a brilliant year.  I love this time of year, even when my head is throbbing, my stomach is churning and my noisy upstairs neighbour are grinding down my last nerve. It feels so fresh and full of promise, and as a bonafide resolution junky I can get the best fix of the year.  The past few years I have extensively shared my plans for the new year (read about 2014/2013/2012) so to ring the changes this time I will only share one, my big aim for 2015 (which isn’t that bold or difficult!)  is to cook a recipe from each of my (currently) 56 cookbooks.  You can see the full list here  - and I will be sharing the results via instagram for the next 52 weeks!  I knocked the first one out on Sunday, and it was so delicious that I remade it the following day too.

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    One of the things my job requires me to be able to do is to learn how to make something at the drop of the hat.  For Marks and Spencers it was old fashioned fudge, for the Telegraph it was gluten free pastry.  It’s stressful and sometimes hopeless, but it suits my short attention span, and every week is a new adventure.  So hopefully this resolution will not only get me passed aimlessly perusing my collection of books (they have to count for more that just a good workout whenever I move house) and I will pick up a new skill or two along the way.  So next time an editor calls the night before a shoot to yet again change the object for the next days shoot I will feel a little more prepared.

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    So I may have lied slightly, and I’m going to veer into sharing another of my resolutions, eat more fruit and vegetables.  Ok, maybe it’s not that new a resolution as I have mentioned it many many times.  As soon as I start mentioning healthy eating the you can almost guarantee that there will be a glut of varying shades of browning bananas hanging out in our fruit bowl.  I start with the best intention in the world of eating almond milk porridge with just a sprinkle of pink salt and sliced banana every morning, but by the end of the week my resolve has softened.

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    Brown bananas mean one thing… BANANA BREAD!! Sweet sticky slices of absolute pure comfort.  My favourite way to spend a wet and blustery winters afternoon is cocooned in a duvet with a pot of tea and a few slices of banana bread.  In the spirit of my Amsterdam adventure last year (and in the hope that 2015 will bring more exciting travel) I added a little dutch spice which was kindly sent to me last year.  Wintery spices like cloves and cinnamon are banana breads best friend, adding a warm dimension to the sweet cake which will have you immediately reaching for a second slice.

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    One Year Ago: London Particular
    Two Years Ago: White Bread Loaf
    Three Years Ago: Spiced Nutella Madeleines

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    Speculaas Banana Bread

    makes one loaf recipe by Jennifer Brown

    Ingredients

    85ml flavourless oil (I used rapeseed) plus extra for greasing

    3 large very ripe bananas, mashed

    200g caster sugar

    2 tbsp treacle

    1 egg

    1 tsp vanilla extract

    1 tsp Speculaas spice or ½ tsp ground cloves ¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg ¼ tsp ground cinnamon

    1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

    pinch of salt

    170g plain flour plus extra for dusting

    50g walnuts (optional)

    Instructions

    1. Start by preheating the oven to 160C (fan) and greasing and dusting a 2lb loaf tin - this is my favourite.
    2. In a large bowl whisk together the mashed bananas, oil, sugar, treacle, vanilla and spices. Whisk until slightly lighter in colour, which takes about a minute.
    3. Sift in the bicarbonate of soda and flour, add a pinch of salt and fold together using a wooden spoon. If adding walnuts stir through. Pour into the prepared tin and bake in the middle of the oven for an hour. If after about 35-40 minute the top looks dark brown you can cover with foil to stop the top from burning. When cooked an inserted skewer should come out with only a few crumbs attached.
    4. Store in an airtight container. Serving suggestion, whipped cream and crushed walnuts.
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    Recipe: French Pumpkin Pie

    December 5th, 2014

    I think that this french pumpkin pie might be my ultimate baking masterpiece. As I have mentioned several times I have a bit of a hatred when it comes to making pastry. A few failed attempts when I first started baking and an entire genre of baking is expunged from my kitchen. The shame is that decadent fruit filled tarts are always the first thing to catch my eye at bakeries (and whilst whiling away my hours on pinterest). Whenever I pass a patisserie it reminds me of eating raspberry topped tarts on a whirlwind trip to Paris when Dan and I first started dating. I dragged my friends to the other side of Amsterdam to try what had been hailed as the best apple pie in the city. So the moral of the story is that I love pastry, so long as I have had no hand in it’s making (even after my pear tarte tatin turned out so well earlier this year). Sometimes days off call for baking challenges.

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    French pumpkin pie is not a quick dessert. It take a few hours of pottering around the kitchen warm cup of tea in hand, flicking through brightly coloured cookbooks whilst slowly stirring a simmering pan on the stove. The result is a subtly sweet flakey pastry holding a silken vanilla filling, closer to an egg tart than it’s strongly spiced American cousins. If I was serving this for dessert at a dinner party, I would pipe delicate rosettes of whipped cream around the crust as an elegant end to the meal. As it was it was, this incarnation of the french pumpkin pie was consumed in much the same way as it was created, whilst relaxing at home, with a steaming cup of hot tea in my hand.

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    One Year Ago: Lime Cake With Mango and Passion Fruit Curd
    Two Years Ago: Mexican Hot Chocolate
    Three Years Ago: Metropolitan Cocktail

    If you liked my blog, you can also find me on:

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    You can subscribe to BAKE via email by following this link

    Speculaas Banana Bread

    makes one loaf recipe by Jennifer Brown

    Ingredients

    85ml flavourless oil (I used rapeseed) plus extra for greasing

    3 large very ripe bananas, mashed

    200g caster sugar

    2 tbsp treacle

    1 egg

    1 tsp vanilla extract

    1 tsp Speculaas spice or ½ tsp ground cloves ¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg ¼ tsp ground cinnamon

    1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

    pinch of salt

    170g plain flour plus extra for dusting

    50g walnuts (optional)

    Instructions

    1. Start by preheating the oven to 160C (fan) and greasing and dusting a 2lb loaf tin - this is my favourite.
    2. In a large bowl whisk together the mashed bananas, oil, sugar, treacle, vanilla and spices. Whisk until slightly lighter in colour, which takes about a minute.
    3. Sift in the bicarbonate of soda and flour, add a pinch of salt and fold together using a wooden spoon. If adding walnuts stir through. Pour into the prepared tin and bake in the middle of the oven for an hour. If after about 35-40 minute the top looks dark brown you can cover with foil to stop the top from burning. When cooked an inserted skewer should come out with only a few crumbs attached.
    4. Store in an airtight container. Serving suggestion, whipped cream and crushed walnuts.
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    Recipe: Aubergine and Pomegranate Bruschetta

    November 24th, 2014

    On Saturday we headed down to Hyde Park to go to the annual Winter Wonderland.  It seemed so long ago that we were last there (though it was only a year) bemoaning the fact that we had to leave early to get back to Canterbury.  Excitedly, we planned how late we could stay the next year when we would be Londoners like all our friends – it closed at 10pm so not that late!  Unlike last year when we found a cozy bar and holed up for the night, this year we wandered round most of the attractions, buying German beer and mulled wine as we went.  The park is huge.  After four hours there I don’t think we covered all of it.  Each section has a different theme, from German market, to a mini Oktoberfest with light shows and a live Queen cover-band, and of course all the fairground rides illuminating the skyline.

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    As soon as the weather turns cold, and I start feeling festive, it seems like all my healthy eating plans go out the window.  I want live off a rotation of meats, bread, apple crumbles and hot chocolate.  Sneaking fresh produce into my diet becomes an uphill struggle against what I crave.  Aubergine is a brilliant vegetable for those seeking a substantial alternative to meat, with its spongy bite and savoury flavour caused by the charring. I usually throw it in to heavily spiced dishes like curries and burritos, but I was looking for something simpler as an easy lunch.

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    This Mediterranean inspired aubergine and pomegranate bruschetta is a little bite of sunshine in this cold, wet English winter weather.  Sweet pomegranate seeds burst with each bite and fresh mint brings a bright freshness to each mouthful.  Lemony yoghurt pulls all the flavours together, the citrus balancing out the umami of the griddled aubergine.  What I love most about it is that the hot toast and vegetable make this satisfyingly warming, which is exactly what I want at this time of year as I hide under layers of jumpers.

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    One Year Ago: Mulled Cider
    Two Years Ago: Unrefined Pancakes
    Three Years Ago: Marrakech

    If you liked my blog, you can also find me on:

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    Recipe: Aubergine and Pomegranate Bruschetta

    makes 4 recipe by Jenny Brown

    Ingredients

    4 thick slices of good quality bread (I used this recipe with white flour instead of wholemeal)

    1 aubergine

    1 tbsp olive oil

    zest of half a lemon

    1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

    150g plain yoghurt

    pinch of salt

    seeds of half a pomegranate

    2 sprigs of mint

    Instructions

    1. Slice the aubergine into 7mm (approx) rounds and brush each side with a little olive oil. Heat a griddle pan to a high heat and lay the slices across it, making sure they don’t overlap. Cook for 3-4 minutes on each until the firm flesh has gone soft and lines are charred across it.
    2. Mix together the yoghurt with the lemon juice and zest and a pinch of salt.
    3. Lightly toast the bread, then assemble the bruschetta: generously layer aubergine, followed by a drizzle of yoghurt, a scattering of pomegranate seeds and a few leaves of mint.
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    Review – Uyen Luu’s Vietnamese Cooking Class

    November 19th, 2014

    One of the perks of being employed an immensely talented chef (and food stylist/food writer/author/photographer - you get it she’s amazing at a lot of stuff!) is that I get to eat more than my fair share of delicious meals and call it work. Sitting in her kitchen a few steps away from her stove, transcribing recipes, dictated as she industrially whips up incredible food, has taught me a lot. Enough to be able to pull together restorative chicken noodle soups when I feel under the weather, balancing sweet, salty, umami, sour and bitter in a way that I wouldn’t have been able to earlier this year. A few of Uyen’s recipes I now know by heart as they feature frequently on my own table, but I was lacking the basic foundation understanding of Vietnamese cuisine. When Uyen asked me if I would like to attend one of her popular cooking classes I jumped at the chance.

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    Uyen’s home is bright and inviting, full of flowers and props with her two friendly dogs padding around underfoot. The class started sat around a table with warm cups of fresh ginger tea, informal introductions and a quick lesson on the key ideas of Vietnamese cooking. How to balance flavours, yin and yang in cooking and how food is used to help cure ailments. Through out the class she imparted tidbits of history, family stories and recommendations of the best products to buy. One of my favourite parts was the field trip to the local Vietnamese supermarket. Uyen showed us her favourite brands, which products she found haven’t worked as well, and highlighted the differences in label illustrations to make sure you pick up the right one in the future. I came home with a full bag even though I frequent that shop most weeks! There was a real emphasis in the class that these were achievable, healthy, economical dishes that you could make at home.

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    Uyen and her Mum (who Uyen says in her mind sets the bar for Vietnamese cooking) taught us so many recipes, thinking back to it makes my head buzz slightly. Ten dishes in one afternoon – yes you get to eat all of it and yes you get to take home a doggy bag too – which is a lot for four and a half hours on a Saturday. If I had to whittle it down to three favourite dishes (which is saying something as they were all delicious) they would be: Thịt Heo Kho Yrứng, a rich savoury stew with melt in the mouth chunks of pork, dotted with quails eggs. Served with fluffy white rice it is both exciting to the palate and the ultimate comfort food. Bahn Xeo, which are eggless rice flour pancakes studded with pork belly and giant prawns. To offset the fried pancake you wrap each strip in a blanket of lettuce and mixed herbs which you then dunk in a spicy tangy dressing. I first ate this for pancake day this year, and I have been saving it to make for friends next Shrove Tuesday. It is impossible to eat neatly, I always lose half my filling in my dipping bowl.

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    Finally, Saigon Summer Rolls, packed with a mixture of vibrant fresh herbs, pork, prawns and noodles, wrapped tightly in paper thin rice paper. This was one of my favourite dinners, served with an array of dips this summer (though they take a little practice!). They are so good that Jamie Oliver invited Uyen to make them as the starter at his Feastival Supper Club this year! Here’s a video we filmed last month on how to make them at home (click here for the recipe)

    How To Make Vietnamese Summer Rolls By Uyen Luu from Uyen Luu on Vimeo.

    Thank you again Uyen for inviting me, and for more information on classes, supper clubs and more visit her website.

    One Year Ago: Mulled Cider
    Two Years Ago: Chocolate and Ginger Cake
    Three Years Ago: Marrakech

    If you liked my blog, you can also find me on:

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    1 Comment "

    Recipe: Roasted Vegetable Pasta {Vegetarian}

    November 17th, 2014

    I’m back, rested and rejuvenated after an unintentional month off. And what a month it has been! At the beginning of November I took a quick weekend trip to Amsterdam to celebrate a friend’s birthday. It is such a beautiful city, so picturesque and tranquil, which lulls you into a false sense of security. One step in the wrong direction to admire one of the plethora of canals and you almost meet your untimely demise at the hands (or more accurately wheels) of one of the millions of manic cyclists. The other side of the city is a lot less tranquil, and far fuller of inebriated tourists. We spent a hilarious night, two roads away from canals reflecting red lights, singing Maroon Five karaoke, fuelled by the local Amstel beer. In my mind we were definitely the best, but what can I say, I’m biased.

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    This pasta was born out of tiredness and accidental necessity, but in my experience some of the tastiest meals are. After reading Deliciously Ella’s post on ‘Healthy Eating On The Go’ I have been trying to keep my fridge stocked with roasted mixed vegetables, homemade hummus and a giant tub of home cooked grains or quinoa. A little prep on a Sunday evening and lunches for the rest of the week involve nothing more than spooning the contents of various tubs onto a plate on into a lunch box. Roast a little extra veg and you have the beginnings of several easy to throw together meals right there. This meal can be made in the time it takes to cook spaghetti, if you have a well stocked fridge. This makes it a favourite of mine after a long day on a photoshoot when the siren call of the local Turkish takeaway is particularly alluring.

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    Butternut squash is one of my favourite roasted vegetables. It is high in antioxidants, and carotenoids (they cause it’s orange colour) which can help protect against heart disease and breast cancer. The delicate flavour of the squash helps balance out the sweetness of the roasted carrots. I prefer to use thyme as I love it paired with mushrooms, and as it grows the most abundantly on my balcony – despite my best black thumbed attempts at nurturing which usually ends in the early death of most of my plants. If you don’t have thyme then any woody herb, like rosemary or sage would work just as well.

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    One Year Ago: Mulled Cider
    Two Years Ago: Chocolate and Ginger Cake
    Three Years Ago: Marrakech

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    Recipe: Roasted Vegetable Pasta {Vegetarian}

    serves 2 recipe by Jenny Brown

    Ingredients

    for the roast vegetables:

    3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped into 1 inch chunks

    ¼ butternut squash, peeled and chopped into 1 inch chunks

    8 chestnut mushrooms, washed

    2 tbsp unsalted butter

    for the spaghetti:

    120g dried spaghetti

    1 tbsp unsalted butter

    4 sprigs thyme

    20g parmesan/pecorino

    salt and pepper to taste

    Instructions

    1. Preheat the oven to 170C, cover the bottom of two tins with (preferably unbleached) baking parchment. Spread the carrots and butternut squash on one and dot around with the butter. Place the mushrooms in the second tin, and put both in the oven.
    2. At 10 minute intervals, use a wooden spatula or spoon to move the squash and carrots around, this makes sure they are equally coated with butter and cook evenly. The should be cooked through with brown edges after about 35-40 minutes.
    3. After 15 minutes (or maybe 20 if they are larger) remove the mushrooms from the oven. When they have cooled enough to handle cut into 5mm slices.
    4. Once the vegetables have been in the oven about 25 minutes, put the pasta on to cook according to the packet instructions. When soft, drain and leave to one side.
    5. In a large pan melt the butter, and add the leaves of the thyme, discarding the tough stalks. When they are sizzling slightly, and the oil from the herbs has infused with the butter, add the roasted vegetables and mushrooms. Fry for 1 minute stirring constantly to coat everything in the fragrant butter and to stop from sticking to the pan (if using preroasted vegetables this stage takes about 3-5 minutes until everything is warmed through).
    6. Add the pasta to the pan, and season with generous amount freshly ground pepper and a small pinch of salt (the cheese will be quite salty, so you don’t want to add too much salt at this point). Stir everything together until thoroughly mixed. Serve into dishes and top with freshly grated cheese.

    Notes

    I have given the quantities of vegetables for the two portion recipe, but it really is worth throwing in as much extra veg as you can and keeping it for later.

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    Favourites From The Web #5

    October 17th, 2014

    Last weekend I had the pleasure of joining a food shoot hosted by the incredibly talented Tara with her brilliant baking friend Nikoletta.  Tara is one of the most driven people I have ever met, and I feel constantly put to shame when I hear the amount of effort she puts in to achieving her dream career. She has the most beautifully curated collection of props, and a fantastic eye for style. Just check out her beautiful pinterest boards, so inspiring. Over the next few weeks I will be posting a few of the extra photos from the shoot, and of course will be sharing the recipes of the dishes I contributed.

    fig salad blog

    The changing of the seasons has sent me into a bit of a fitness mode. My summer forgotten running shoes have been dusted off and I’ve been hitting the park, enjoying glimpses of skyscrapers through the treeline. After quitting my gym when I left Canterbury, I have dabbled in a few online fitness classes, with little luck. Xbox Fitness doesn’t register properly in our city sized living room and the Youtube videos where quite frankly terrifying! When I stumbled across Blogilates I was so excited. I can actually make it to the end of her videos! I may be shaking and sweating profusely but they are actually achievable for the average girl (ok I’m probably of sub average fitness!). I really hope I can hold on to this fitness streak, I have the slightly lame ambition of being able to run to London Bridge and back before the end of winter. It will also help me work off this ton of bread from the shoot this week.

    egg muffins 1 blog

    Inspiring me this week:

    I want to do: A capsule wardrobe, Caroline from the blogging bombshell Un-Fancy’s  starter guide is so simple and clever. A spreadsheet and a giant pile of clothes and I am well on my way to my perfect fall/winter 37 items of clothing. It’s also a perfect excuse to go out a buy this and this.

    fig bruchetta 2 blog

    I want to eat: This beautiful breakfast in bed from My Name Is Yeh, because not being the first one to brave the cold morning to put on the kettle is the ultimate form of winning.

    My Sweet Tooth Wants: Pretty much anything that involves cooked apples and cinnamon, I seriously cannot get enough of them! These spiced apple waffles from Vegetarian Ventures really caught my eye.

    carrots blog

    I want to go: Food prop shopping at Battersea (as recommended by Hemsley and Hemsley)

    This was really interesting: This guide to October produce in the UK by The Dinner Bell, it reminded me I need to make cauliflower cheese ASAP!

    fig bruchetta 1 blog

    One Year Ago: My Vietnamese Kitchen Book Launch
    Two Years Ago: Halloween Cookies

    If you liked my blog, you can also find me on:

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    garlic blog

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    Recipe: Herby Wild Mushrooms On Toast

    October 15th, 2014

    There is a cafe within hungover stumbling distance of my flat called Lazy Social. During a particularly party-filled weekend over the summer I ended up there for breakfast, head throbbing and dry-mouthed, twice in 24 hours. In part this was because I was craving their large plate of garlic and parsley butter mushrooms on sourdough, which I foolishly overlooked in favour of pancakes on the first visit. It’s not to say that I purposely went out of my way to imbibe in order to make the correct hangover brunch choice. But sometimes life presents you with opportunities and you just have to lean into them.

    mushroom toast 1 blog

    After my second breakfast there, the one I had spent the previous 24 hours obsessing over turned out to be a garlic and herb butter-devoid disappointment.  So since then I’ve made sure to keep a stock of ingredients, because even in my most incapacitated, frying a few mushrooms and tumbling them over toast is well within anyone’s grasp.

    mushroom toast 2 blog

    This version is a slight departure from my midsummer cravings, because lets face it, sometimes it’s kinder not arriving to an event surrounded by an allium haze. Most greengrocers are now stocked with the beautiful wild mushrooms that have just come into season. The earthy flavours of mushrooms pairs beautifully with woody herbs like thyme, which happens to be one of my favourites. That may have a little to do with the fact that it thrives in the UK and therefore I alway have an abundance growing on my balcony.  I love the slight tang of sourdough, but I think the flavours of the mushrooms really shine next to the nutty undertones of wholemeal bread.  This is a really fun way to use up those last few slightly stale slices from a really good quality (maybe homemade) loaf.

    mushroom toast 3 blog

    One Year Ago: My Vietnamese Kitchen Book Launch
    Two Years Ago: Halloween Cookies

    If you liked my blog, you can also find me on:

    bloglovin’ | | twitter | | pinterest | | tumblr | | flickr | | instagram

    You can subscribe to BAKE via email by following this link

    Herby Wild Mushrooms On Toast

    serves 2 recipe by Jennifer Brown

    Ingredients

    10 mixed wild mushrooms

    1 tbsp olive oil

    4 sprigs of thyme

    1 tbsp butter

    salt and pepper to toast

    half a ball of mozzarella

    2 thick slices of bread lightly toasted

    Instructions

    1. Heat a large frying pan over a medium heat and add the olive oil. Clean and slice the mushrooms, and add them to the pan in a single layer making sure they are not too crowded (crowding stops them from browning properly).
    2. Shake the pan occasionally to stop the mushrooms from sticking. After 5 minutes or when they are golden brown on the underside, turn them over and cook for a further 5 minutes, or until they are brown all over.
    3. When the mushrooms are browned to your liking, add the butter to the pan and the leaves of the thyme. Using a wooden spoon stir the mushrooms until they are coated in the herby butter, for two minutes until the butter has slightly reduced. Season the mushrooms to taste.
    4. Spoon over the toast and top with torn mozzarella and serve hot.
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