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My Golden Pear

Thursday, 13 June 2013


I've spoken before about my love for hot, spicy food and this lamb kofta is one of my favourite midweek curries. 
The kofta mixture is very versatile - make small meatballs, shallow fry them in oil and serve with chutney or a yoghurt dip as an appetiser, mould them on to skewers and char-grill and serve as a starter or cook them in this curry sauce for a more substantial meal. 
 I always make this quantity and then freeze any surplus meatballs and sauce separately, ready for a quick home made meal when I don't feel like going to too much trouble.
When served with the curry sauce, they are quite spicy but it is easy enough to tone down the chilli if you prefer.

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour
Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Yield: 6
  • 1 small onion, roughly chopped
  • 5 cm piece of ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 green chillies, seeds removed
  • 15 g coriander (cilantro) leaves
  • 2 tblsps plain yoghurt
  • 500 g minced lamb
  • 2½ tsps ground cumin
  • 1½ tsps ground coriander
  • 2 tsps garam masala
  • ¼ tsp chilli powder
  • 2½ tsps salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  •  For the sauce
  • 3 tblsp ghee or sunflower oil
  • 2 medium onions, roughly chopped
  • 10 cm piece of ginger
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • ½ tsp chilli powder
  • 3 tsp garam masala
  • ¼ tsp asafoetida
  • 4 ripe tomatoes roughly chopped
  • 1 tblsp tomato puree
  • 500 ml lamb stock
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 4 curry leaves
  • 200 ml water
Cooking Directions
  1. To make the kofta, blend the onion, ginger, garlic, green chillies and the coriander leaves together in a food processor until they form a paste.
  2. Put the lamb mince in a bowl, add the paste, yoghurt, spices, salt & pepper and mix well with your hands until thoroughly combined.
  3. Cover and put in the freezer to rest while you make the sauce. (You just want it super chilled - not frozen).
  4. To make the sauce, heat the ghee in a large saucepan and gently fry the onions, garlic and ginger until softened and lightly browned.
  5. Add the chilli powder, garam masala, and asafoetida and stir well.
  6. Add the chopped tomatoes and cook for a couple of minutes to release some of the juice.
  7. Add the stock and tomato puree and season with black pepper.
  8. Add the cinnamon stick and curry leaves and bring to a simmer.
  9. Partially cover with a lid and cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  10. Remove the sauce from the heat and discard the cinnamon and curry leaves.
  11. Blend the sauce until as smooth as possible.
  12. Return to the heat, add 200 ml water and bring back to a simmer.
  13. Remove meat mixture from the freezer.
  14. Using wet hands, shape the mixture into meatballs about the size of a walnut. you should get between 25 and 30.
  15. Drop all the meatballs gently into the sauce mixture and return to a simmer.
  16. Cook, uncovered for a further 30 minutes, stirring regularly.
  17. Serve the meatballs with rice and topped with yoghurt and fresh coriander leaves      
Written by Angela Darroch  
The sauce is adapted from BBC Food

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Friday, 5 April 2013


Many, many moons ago when I lived on my own I used to treat myself to some deliciously hot and spicy curries.  The kind of curry that clears your sinuses and leaves your mouth numb for hours after.  That all changed when I met my husband. He was a meat and two veg man and so as to not scare him off I toned down my taste for all things spicy.  Next came the kids and once again I have had to change the way I cook a curry.  There is now almost no heat, just the delicious mix of different spices.  How I love a curry takeaway these days when I can order my very own vindaloo. 
 This recipe for Kashmiri Chicken is one that we all love.  It is definitely not a hot curry but the combination of cardamom, chilli and paprika are delicious.  My 4 year old describes it as "the curry I can't get enough of."  As a Mum, that is music to my ears.
For the printable version - click here

Kashmiri Chicken

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
Total time: 30 minutes
Yield: 4
  • 25g ghee or butter
  • 2 large onions, thinly sliced
  • 10 whole peppercorns
  • seeds from 10 cardamom pods, crushed
  • small cinnamon stick
  • small knob of fresh root ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 2 tsps paprika
  • 600 g skinless chicken breasts, chopped into bite size pieces
  • 100 g frozen peas
  • 250 ml natural yogurt
Cooking Directions
  1. Melt the ghee or butter in a wok.  Add the onions, peppercorns, crushed cardamom seeds and cinnamon and fry for about 8 - 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are golden.
  2. Add the ginger, garlic, chilli powder, paprika and salt to taste and fry for a further 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add the chicken pieces and fry until they are evenly browned and cooked through.
  4. Add the peas and fry until cooked.
  5. Gradually add the yogurt, stirring constantly until heated through.
  6. If sauce is too thick, add a touch of water to thin it out.
  7. Serve hot with rice and lime wedges.
** The curry does tend to curdle when adding the yogurt but I find if I leave it to cool down and then reheat again, the sauce blends together but you will need to add some water to thin it out a bit.       
    Written by : Angela Darroch

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Friday, 18 January 2013


Today's post is not so much about a recipe but more about one of my favourite food products, the Peppadew pepper.

I'll start by saying that I was not paid to write about these little beauties, nor do I work for the company - I just love them.  The combination of the wonderfully sweet brine which they are preserved in together with the heat from the peppers is a marriage made in heaven.  I'm not sure about you but I have succumbed to buying those stuffed peppers that they sell on the High Street on market day and I'm disappointed every time.  They generally tend to be a bit squidgy and break down into nothing when you try to pick one up.  Well, the answer is to buy  a jar of these little lovelies and fill them yourself with some cream cheese. You won't be disappointed, the crispness of the peppers together with the smooth, creaminess of the cream cheese.  Delicious.
Now I may be accused of being slightly biased towards this product because they originate from South Africa but try them for yourself. 
It will be love at first bite. 
If not, I will send you my postal address and you can send me the remainder of your jar. 

Enough said about the peppers. The meal below is my idea of comfort food. If you have left over mashed potato then make up a batch of these potato cakes . You don't need to be too precise with the ingredients. A bit of this and bit of that is normally what goes on. You can't really go wrong with hot, fried mashed potato and of course topped with the Peppadew salsa it is heaven.

Because I've used leftover mashed potato I am going to submit this to Turquoise Lemons - No Waste Food Challenge which is being hosted over at Elizabeth's Kitchen for this month.

For the printable version - click here

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Total time: 25 minutes
Yield: 1 serving
  • 1/2 tblsp olive oil
  • 1 small red onion, sliced
  • 150 g Peppadew mild piquante peppers, sliced in half
  • 1 tblsp balsamic vinegar
  • small handful of fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 cup mashed potato
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 tblsp flour
  • 1 tblsp red onion, finely chopped
  • small handful of fresh parsley, chopped
Cooking Directions

To make the salsa
  1. Heat the oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the sliced onions and peppers and cook for 5 minutes, or until the onion is softened.
  2. Add the balsamic vinegar and basil, season and warm through for 2 minutes.
  3. Remove from the heat and keep warm.
To make the potato cakes
  1. In a mixing bowl, combine the potato, cheese, flour, chopped onion and parsley.
  2. On a separate plate, have some flour ready for dredging the potato cakes.
  3. Measure out equal parts of the potato mixture and shape each one into a pattie using your hands. Dredge in the flour.
  4. Add some sunflower oil to a non stick frying pan and lightly saute each pattie for a couple of minutes on each side until golden brown and crisp on the outside.
To serve
  1. Stack the potato cakes on your serving plate, spooning your warm salsa over and around them.
  2. Add some fresh basil leaves on top.   
Written by : Angela Darroch           

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Tuesday, 31 July 2012


I'm always on the look out for new and interesting starters so with my hubby away on business I thought I would try this one which I found in one of my old Taste magazines. There is a lot involved in making all the different components so probably not one for your average family get together but more for a flashy dinner party.  It is quite spicy and I think it needs to be in order to cut through the richness of the coconut cream sauce.  I did try one version with less curry paste but it was just too insipid.  I have also tried using Thai sticky rice instead of the sushi rice but it was far too heavy and glutinous.  I think a small portion of plain boiled rice would work just as well.

Prep time: 40 mins
Cook time: 30 mins
Total time: 1 hr 10 mins

Yield: 4


For the red curry cream:
  • 2 tblsps red curry paste
  • 125 ml coconut milk
  • 175 ml cream
  • 2 sticks lemongrass, crushed
  • 1 small knob fresh ginger, peeled & crushed

  • 16 medium tiger prawns
  • oil for frying
  • 200 g cooked sushi rice
  • Half a butternut, boiled and cubed
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 50 g peanuts, chopped finely
  • fresh baby leaves to garnish

Cooking Directions
  1. To make the red curry cream, place a saucepan over a medium heat.
  2. Add the red curry paste and heat for a few seconds until fragrant.
  3. Add the coconut milk, cream, lemongrass and ginger and simmer for 15 mins until slightly reduced and full of flavour.
  4. To cook the prawns, place a pan over a high heat. Lightly toss the prawns in the oil before flash frying for 20 seconds on each side.
  5. Divide the rice and butternut between 4 plates and top with 4 prawns each.
  6. Scatter over the sesame seeds and peanuts before drizzling with the red curry cream.
  7. Top with the fresh baby leaves.
Written by : Angela Darroch       

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