COOKING WITH GRANDMA CHRONICLES PART 40

BUBBLE AND SQUEAK Grandma still cannot approach the town of Cheltenham without a shudder. This is where she was at boarding school for six unhappy years. Given her love of cooking, it might have been the execrable food that did her in, but there was much more to it than that. Calvinist principles of self-denial

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COOKING WITH GRANDMA CHRONICLES PART 25

EMMA’S BURNT BEANS When we lived in Burgundy we were spoiled by our elderly gardener who loved to grow green beans. He would bully his elderly wife into picking them so we had literally buckets delivered each day. Then it was up to us to prepare them for the table. Luckily we had lots of

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COOKING WITH GRANDMA CHRONICLES PART 23

GRATIN OF SUMMER VEGETABLES We can make this recipe all summer long with vegetables from the supermarket but then, in early September, arrives the magic moment when every ingredient comes from the nearby farmers’ market. Vegetable gratin can be a first course or an accompaniment to lamb, chicken, or fish. Serves 4 to 6 2

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COOKING WITH GRANDMA CHRONICLES PART 17

FRESH GREEN PEA SOUP When Grandma was a child, she would help her mother to pick green peas in the garden, then she would sit beside the kitchen table to help in shell them. Out would pop peas of all sorts of sizes and sometimes, ugh, there might be a little worm inside.  Cooking times

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COOKING WITH GRANDMA CHRONICLES PART 15

HOT COLE SLAW Leo wondered why cabbage might be called hot and cold, so Grandma explained that “cole” means cabbage, not its temperature. This is a cold weather dish, good with roast pork or the leftovers of turkey. Serves 4 ½ small white cabbage (about 1 pound/450g) For the dressing 2 egg yolks ¼ cup/60

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COOKING WITH GRANDMA CHRONICLES PART 13

WINTER WHITE VEGETABLES So many winter roots are white. You could substitute others-artichokes or parsnips- for those suggested here: for colour, add carrots or sweet potatoes. The vegetables are simmered in stock, then stirred in bit by bit in the manner of risotto. They make a warming side dish for four. Serves 4 ½ lb/250

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COOKING WITH GRANDMA CHRONICLES PART 3

QUICK RATATOUILLE Grandma likes to use a wok for this quick ratatouille, a family dish for summer when eggplant, peppers, zucchini and tomatoes are at their best down at the Mas in Languedoc. The wide cooking surface of a wok spreads the vegetables so they cook more quickly and are easy to toss in the

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The Forgotten Sauce

Whether you call it by its classy French name Béchamel, from the 18th century French Marquis of the same name, know it as “cream gravy” as they do in Texas and much of the South, or simply call it White Sauce as the English like me do, I’m struck by how it’s become the forgotten sauce.

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Fresh Fava Beans with Bacon

Fresh favas are a favorite big bean, one of the first arrivals in early spring. They have one fault: a thick skin that needs peeling. It is a fiddly job but the bright green, slightly crunchy bean that emerges is ample reward. Even better, when fresh lima beans are in season, they can replace favas

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Spring Gratin

  As a way to present vegetables, enhanced but not hidden by their golden brown crust, a gratin seems to me ideal. Even when dressed in a white sauce, the color and shapes of the vegetables still show through, and nuts, chopped herbs and other flavorings only add to the riot of color. The special

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