Gastronomically Terrific

December 28, 2014

Seasonally spiced nuts

Another thing that I have made in the past (back for Christmas 2012), I like having some spiced nuts around on Christmas Day morning. It means that people who are feeling peckish but don’t like/ want chocolate have something to eat. Besides, they make the house smell nice and look pretty good too (you’ll have to take my word for that because this is something else I failed to take a photo of). And they are easy to make…

… usually! Because we bought some of our Christmas shopping online this year, we ended up buying 500g of nuts still in their shells. Which resulted in Dan taking a hammer to the nuts to get them out of their shells (no, we don’t own a nutcracker. The only nuts we usually ever buy in shells are pistachio nuts). The whole process took a good half an hour. But, after that, spicing the nuts was easy!

On Christmas Eve I dry-fried the nuts in garam masala and celery salt, added some brown sugar, oil and rosemary, and then tipped them into a baking tray lined with foil. I then covered the baking tray with foil and left them until Christmas Day. Ten minutes before I wanted them on Christmas Day, I put them in the oven to heat through. Once they were heated, I added them to a bowl with a few sprigs of rosemary. And that was it. Admittedly, there are still nuts left lying around 3 days later, but they have been picked at over the last few days and make for a tasty alternative to more sweets and chocolate!

Who made it: Anna

Recipe: Nigella Christmas, pg. 21


August 14, 2014

Potato, celery and caramelised onion salad

Filed under: lunch, salad, vegetarian — Tags: , , , , , — lawsonanna @ 6:02 pm

The final thing I made for our not-picnic-tea was this salad. I wanted to make a potato salad so that we had a slightly more diverse range of food than just a standard lettuce-based salad, but I don’t usually make potato salad; so I needed a recipe to follow. This was one of the few potato-based salad recipes that I seemed to have in the house.

I wasn’t sure how well it would work out as it was a fairly simple recipe, but it was actually one of the tastiest elements of our Saturday evening tea. The recipe is really basic – boiled new potatoes with fried onions and celery. Dan ended up frying the celery, even though the recipe said not to, and this actually worked out really well.

The dressing was a mixture of mayonnaise, olive oil and lemon juice. Dan wasn’t sure about the mayonnaise as it had been in the fridge for a while, but it transpired that it tasted fine, and the salad (whilst nice without it), worked really well with the dressing. My brother and I ate most of a salad made for 4 people in one sitting.

Definitely one we’ll be making again, although I’m not entirely sure why it’s in a Christmas collection. This most definitely felt like a summer (or maybe autumn) salad. Oh, and sorry – no photos again. Far too busy cooking and eating.

Who made it: Dan

Recipe: Mary Berry’s Christmas Collection, pg. 264-265

Blog at