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Small cooking revelations to share

  • The trick to making the besterest felafels, as discovered by M this week: don’t use cooked chickpeas. Use dried ones, which you boil for ten minutes and then leave to soak, heat off, for a few hours. Add seasonings of choice and a little flour, mash it all up in the food processor and chill before using. After years of felafels that simply disintegrated into fried crumbles (not as tasty as it sounds) when they hit the oil, this is a big deal. I had felafels for lunch all last week. If you’ve got yourself some mint and yoghurt sauce there, you’re freaking SET.
  • I struggle to think of any recipe involving pumpkin that doesn’t benefit from roasting the pumpkin first.
  • While we’re talking chickpeas, the secret to attaining bethini-level awesomeness in your hummus lies in these little babies:

    Toasted little babies


    …and these little squirts:

    Roasted little squirts

    Toasted sesame seeds, roasted garlic, and skimp ye not on the lemon juice and olive oil.

  • Anything wrapped in rice paper rolls is a fantastic lunch. I will eat carpet scrapings and staples if you wrap them in rice paper and drizzle them with dipping sauce. I have begun experimenting with my fillings. The latest triumph: boiled eggs/mayonnaise/lettuce/capsicum.
  • This week I did some pizza experimenting and I am some sort of fucking pizza genius. (By which I mean a really awesome pizza maker, not somebody who likes to…well, not to pizza they’re sharing. That would be unhygienic.) The two following combinations hovered from oven to table, levitating by power of AWESOME alone:
    • Base brushed with olive oil, balsamic vinegar and vinno cotto, topped with sliced figs and feta, sprinkled with rocket before serving.
    • Base brushed with hummus, then sprinkled with black pepper and chilli flakes, then topped with slices of tomatoes and olives.

    If neither of those ideas excites you, CHECK YOUR PULSE.

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