Tag Archives: potatoes

Paprika Chicken with Peas and Lardons


Here is a nice, tasty and easy way to jazz up the classic trinity of chicken, peas and potatoes. A real crowd-pleaser, this dish is ideal for a relaxed meal with friends.

You will need (for 4 people):
8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs
4 tbsp plain flour
4 tbsp rapeseed oil (or other cooking oil)
2 large onions
4 cloves garlic
2 tbsp paprika
800 g potatoes
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp tomato purée
A splash brandy (optional)
500 ml chicken stock

For the peas:
1 tbsp rapeseed oil
1 medium onion, chopped
200 g peas, fresh or frozen
80 g lardons
1 bay leaf
400 ml vegetable stock


Cut the chicken thighs into bite-sized chunks. Peel the onions and cut into wedges. Peel the potatoes and cut in 2 or 3 depending on size.

In a large, heavy based pan or casserole, heat up half of the oil. Flour the chicken, then fry in batches until nicely coloured on all sides. Reserve on a plate covered with kitchen paper.

Warm up the rest of the oil in the same pan, add the onion wedges and the peeled garlic cloves and cook gently for about 2 min. Add the paprika, then the potatoes and stir well. Add the tomato purée, leave to cook for a minute, then add the vinegar and brandy.

Put the chicken back in, add the stock and bring to the boil. Cover, and leave to simmer for about 15 min, then take the lid off and simmer for a few more minutes until the potatoes are tender and the sauce has thickened. Check the seasoning, and adjust if necessary.

Meanwhile, make the peas:

In a saucepan, heat up the oil, and gently fry the lardons and onions. When the onions have softened a bit, add the peas and stir.

Add the vegetable stock, bay leaf, and a bit of black pepper. Bring to the boil then turn the heat down and simmer for about 10 min. Using a fine sieve, drain any remaining stock out, and transfer to a warm serving dish.



Filed under Mains, Meat dishes

Your Sunday Night Hug: Fried Eggs With Potatoes and Peppers


Do you ever get this Sunday night feeling? You know, at the end of a great, sunny weekend, full of your child’s smiles, and laughter, and walks around the park, good food and good company, and a host of simple, little joys. When you realise this is over, and in the morning, once again, you will don your corporate smile, and matching suit, and make your way to work.

When you get this feeling, you want and need something that will help you make the most out of the small slice of weekend you have left. Something comforting and safe.

This is what this dish is. A little piece of sunny Sunday, a bit of a smile on your plate, an edible hug to help you through the week ahead.

You will need (for 2):

4 eggs
1 green pepper
3 medium potatoes
1/2 onion, finely chopped
Olive oil


Peel and thinly slice the potatoes. In a non-stick frying pan, heat up enough olive oil to come up to about 5 mm deep. Gently fry the potatoes on a medium heat until cooked, but not crisp.

Meanwhile, de-seed the pepper and dice it. Add it to the pan about 10 min after the potatoes. When cooked, drain the vegetables onto kitchen paper and pour the oil out of the pan, reserving just 1 tbsp.

Return the pan to the heat with the reserved oil, and gently fry the onion. Add the potatoes and pepper. Spread in an even layer at the bottom of the pan.

Break the eggs over the vegetables, taking care not to break the yolks, and cook to your liking. Season, then serve with crusty bread.image


Filed under Eggs, Mains, Vegetarian

Another “No Cheese” Rant: Authentic Gratin Dauphinois



I was fortunate enough to spend 3 years studying in Grenoble, in a part of the French Alps called the Dauphiné. And it just so happens that this region is the birthplace of Gratin Dauphinois (or dauphinoise potatoes as it is called in English).

When I say that I was “fortunate”, it is because at the end of these wonderful 3 years, I headed back home with the recipe for Gratin Dauphinois in my back pocket (and a Master’s Degree in Business, but who cares? You can’t eat a degree).

Now, for those of you who read my Quiche Lorraine post, you will know that I don’t like it one bit when people mess with a beautifully simple recipe. This also applies to Gratin Dauphinois. THERE IS NO CHEESE IN IT, just potatoes, milk, cream, eggs and seasoning. That is all you need!

This gratin is perfect as a side dish with roast meats, or as a main with a few slices of cured meats.

You will need (for 4):

About 1.2 kg potatoes
2 eggs
750 ml milk
4 tbsp double cream
1 clove garlic
100g butter + extra for the dish


Preheat the oven to 200 C/ fan 180C/ gas 6-7.

Peel the garlic and cut in half. Rub the cut side over the bottom and sides of a large oven dish. Butter the dish.

Peel and wash the potatoes, then cut into 2mm slices.

In a large jug, beat the eggs, then add the cream and milk. Season.

Put a layer of potato slices over the bottom of the dish (you don’t need to be neat), then pour some of the milk mixture over it. Repeat until the dish is full or you have used up all the ingredients.

Season, sprinkle some grated nutmeg on top, and some rosemary. Dot small pieces of the butter all over.image

Bake for about 45 min or until golden and cooked through.


Filed under Mains, Sides, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Gressingham Duck Breast Strips, Pan-fried Nectarines, and Golden Pan-roasted Potatoes


I have mentioned Mr Greedy Frog in a previous post (this one), but I haven’t told you yet that 16 months ago, Mr Greedy Frog and me had a Little Greedy Tadpole.

Today, I had to leave work early to pick her up from nursery because she had been ill (she is now fine). This gave me a chance to have a nice stroll to the shop, with Little Greedy Tadpole in her pushchair, and buy some fresh ingredients for dinner.

This is a rare treat for a Thursday, as like most working mums, I only normally have time for food shopping at the weekend, and have to rely heavily on my freezer through the week.

I had no idea what I felt like cooking or eating, but I knew it would have to be quick to prepare (a sick toddler doesn’t leave you a lot of time to cook), and also convey a bit of a sense of occasion (it was a sunny Thursday and I was not at work).

When I saw a pack of Gressingham Duck breast strips, I knew that it was what I wanted. Quick and easy to cook, but a bit fancier than the average mid-week meal.

I already had some Maris Piper potatoes at home, all I needed now was a sweet note.

It wasn’t easy to choose between all the lovely, juicy summer fruit available at the greengrocer’s, but I eventually settled on some gorgeous nectarines.

In this recipe, the potatoes are pan-roasted rather than oven-roasted, the way my mother makes them, and her mother before her. It produces crispy, golden potatoes in record time, and doesn’t require using the oven on a hot August evening…

You will need: (for 2 people)

350 g potatoes (any kind suitable for roasting)
Olive oil (or duck fat)
200 g Gressingham Duck mini fillets
1 firm nectarine
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Salt flakes
Chopped parsley, to serve


Peel the potatoes, cut into rough cubes, about 1.5 cm wide. Rinse well in cold water, drain, then tip onto a clean tea towel and dry thoroughly.

Heat up a deep cast iron roasting pan on a medium heat, add enough oil or duck fat to generously cover the bottom.

When hot, add the potatoes (be careful if you are using duck fat as it can get rather volcanic when hot). Give the pan a quick shake to distribute the potatoes evenly, then every 5 min or so, stir the potatoes to make sure they don’t stick. They should cook in about 20 to 25 min.

Meanwhile, prepare the nectarine. Wash it thoroughly then cut it in half, pit it, and cut each half into four.

About 10 min before the potatoes are due to be ready, heat up a non-stick frying pan.

Add the nectarine segments on one side of the pan, and drizzle with the maple syrup. Add the duck to the other side of the pan. Leave to cook for about 3 min, then turn over the duck strips and nectarine. Season with salt flakes and pepper.

Leave for another 3 min, then remove the duck and reserve under some foil. Turn the heat off under the frying pan, and drizzle the vinegar over the fruit, then turn to coat.

Sprinkle some salt flakes and parsley over the potatoes before putting them onto the serving plates. Add the duck and nectarine segments. Pour a little bit of hot water into the frying pan to make a quick glaze, and spoon onto the duck.


Filed under Mains, Meat dishes