Wednesday, 9 October 2013
I think one of the favourite things I like to do with the leftover veg from a Sunday Roast is to make what is called Bubble and Squeak. Bubble and Squeak is a prime example of British ingenuity and thrift. It's almost too simple to show . . . but too good to pass by.
No hard and fast rules apply. You simply chop up everything you have vegetable wise, and then bang it into a hot pan with a few seasonings and a bit of butter or drippings to brown it all in. Sometimes I add Worcestershire Sauce, sometimes I don't. It all depends on what kind of mood I am in.
It doesn't really matter if what you end up with looks a bit like a dog's dinner . . . it's the taste that really matters and how can all of those lightly caramelized vegetables taste bad?? I don't think there is any way to improve upon it . . . or is there????
Well, I didn't think that was possible until yesterday . . . last week I was sent a bottle of English Truffle Oil by the Truffle Hunter Company.
Now I will confess right now. I don't know a lot about Truffles. I've never been able to afford to buy them. But I do know that they are a well appreciated ingredient by those lucky enough to be able to use them on a regular basis. Truffle Hunter English Truffle Oil is uniquely 100% English. It is made with Cotswold Cold Pressed Extra Virgin Rapeseed Oil, English Truffles hunted in Wiltshire and Somerset, and Truffle Hunter own Black Truffle flavour. I thought it would perhaps add a unique flavour to the dish . . . just a light drizzle over top . . . as a finishing adornment.
I have to say . . . I was not disappointed. It added another depth to the flavour of something which is quite ordinary, lifting it to the extra-ordinary. It was gloriously rich and tasty. We both quite enjoyed it! Many thanks to Truffle Hunter for providing me with this oil to try. They also sent me some truffle butter and some truffle honey, but I will save them for another day. The truffle oil retails at £5.95 for 100ml.
*Bubble and Squeak*
Traditionally made by frying up the leftover potatoes, cabbage or Brussels sprouts (Christmas) in the drippings from the roasted Sunday joint. From what I understand the name came from the noise made from the vegetables as they fried in the pan, although I have also heard that it might have something to do with the effects that brassica vegetables might have on the human digestive system . . . ahem . . . If you don't have any leftover potatoes, you can always cook some to use in the recipe in some boiling salted water, just until they are tender, drain, cool and then proceed as per the recipe.
2 TBS butter, lard or meat drippings
a splash of oil
2 large mugs of leftover roasted potatoes, roughly diced
one medium onion, peeled and chopped
2 large mugs leftover cooked cabbage, Brussels Sprouts, and other cooked vegetables,
salt, pepper and summer savoury to taste
Heat the butter in a wide heavy skillet or frying pan along with the oil. Once it is hot add the onions and cook, stirring, until they have softened. Add the remaining vegetables along with the herbs, salt and pepper. Give them a good stir to mix, then press the mixture down into the frying pan to compact it a bit. Cook, without stirring, over medium heat for about 5 to 7 minutes until they are beginning to brown. Give them a good stir, and repeat, allowing it to brown again. Once it is as crisply browned as you like, remove from the heat and serve, spooned out onto plates with, or without gravy. Some people like to just have it with a poached or fried egg on top which is also very good.
Many thanks to Truffle Hunter.