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Bonfire Night Recipes

As an equalitarian, it does pain me to say that this week is all about the guy! Just remember though, girls – what goes on the bonfire, and who gets the grub?

Here are some tips to make your spuds and bangers the best on the street, as well as my easiest recipe ever to elevate the humble tin of beans to something you will not just turn out for the 5th November. They are darn-doodley good with a thick pork chop and buttery mash too.

You need (to serve 2 hungry folk)
Olive oil (about a tablespoon)
1 onion roughly chopped
A 3” chunk of good, spicy chorizo
1 large garlic clove
1 red chilli
400g tin of baked beanz (you know the ones)
A splash of red wine (not essential but if you have one open, give the pan a glug)
A tablespoon of chopped parsley

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Do it like this.
Heat your olive oil over a medium heat in a smallish frying pan. Add the onion and fry for about 5 minutes until softened. Add the chorizo, garlic and chilli, and fry for a further 5 minutes. When the bottom of your pan looks like molten ruby, add the baked beans and the red wine (if using). Bring to a nice gentle bubble. You can leave the beans on the stove like this for anything from 15 minutes to an hour – just be sure to keep an eye on them and if they start to look a little dry, add some water or more vino. 5 minutes before the end add the chopped parsley.
And there you have it, easiest bean transformation on the planet. Perfect for mid-week eats.

Of course for bonfire night, these beans are God’s own partner to a fire of sizzling sausages and baked potatoes. So read on for tips on the perfect jacket and bangers.
Firstly, I don’t care how much you love your microwave, all self-respecting jackets need to have seen an oven, BBQ or fire for at least 30 minutes (and if you are giving the micro a miss altogether, then you are looking at a good couple of hours). Rub a bit of olive oil and sprinkle some salt over the skin to help crisp it up.
When the crispy little beauty comes out of the oven cut a big cross in the top and then squish together to let the hot, fluffy potato say hello.
Real jackets need real butter – forget those awful hydrogenated things called spreads. Butter and plenty of Maldon is all that is required. In with a small spoon and you are ready.

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The good old British banger really is an unsung hero. So versatile and so delicious, whether in a toad, skinless with pasta and mustard, or between two slices of bread with some brown sauce on a Saturday morning. Mr D makes his own sometimes, but you really need to put aside a weekend for serious sausage business like that.
Easier instead to make friends with your local butcher or deli. You want good meaty ones, and look out for natural casings (I prefer them as they give your banger it’s natural, characteristic curve). Mr Pickles’ Food Store on Abbeydale Road does some pretty terrific ones.

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So that’s it for this post, except to say have fun this bonfire night, and do let me know what you think of the beans!

Ciao bambinos,
Helen




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