Cooking two fiddly and elaborate fried starches just because you can’t make up you mind which you want is more or less canonically indulgent. Nonetheless, that’s what I did on Thursday. I’d not made croquetas before, and something about the idea of frying dollops of sauce just didn’t seem quite right. Into that uncertainty crept all sorts of thoughts about adding potato which didn’t seem quite right either.
So it was a bet-hedging exercise. There’d be croquettes if the croquetas didn’t work out, and no need to run either by trying to combine both.
To spoil the ending, it mostly worked. The croquetas suffered from not being deep-fried, an instruction I was foolish to ignore. The croquettes were just a little too doughy, and this again was a simple, fixable, process error.
It’s a gorgeous afternoon. I’ve just had a slice of excellent pizza from the newly-opened Norfolk Street Bakery. Their bread and butter pudding cake looks astounding. I’m in a great mood, and I’m putting off playing Pokémon for the OneMetal Podcast. So it’s time to crack open a St. Idesbald Tripel and build a Waterzooi recipe.
Waterzooi is the most interesting thing I came across on a recent trip to Belgium. The most interesting edible thing, anyway. There were some fucking splendid beers, and a lot of interesting art, too, but gastronomically it was the Waterzooi that stood out. So I’m going to have a crack at recreating it.
Last night I cooked dinner for some friends. This substantially involved re-cooking a couple of things from Veguary I’d been meaning to blog about for a while. Both are variants on dishes from the River Cottage Veg Every Day book that I’ve made a few tweaks to, and both work really rather well.
The kale pizza is pretty much straight up from p186, with a base sauce of insanely thick roasted garlic béchamel sauce, and a spot of cumin. This has the benefit of tasting stupidly indulgent whilst not actually being all that bad for you. But I am not fucking about with the garlic; you were warned.
For the salad, I borrowed the dressing from Fearnley-Whittingstall’s
“Asian-inspired coleslaw” on p115, and whacked it over blanched beans and julienne carrots. It’s all about the sesame, and the dishes work together surprisingly well, although there’s a lot of very strong flavours sloshing about here.
On Thursday, I was running short of ideas for what to cook, and asked the internet.
This proved to be a mistake in several ways. What follows is a little long-form,
and you may well wish to just skip to the recipe itself.