Most of us have our go-to recipes, be it for a mid-week lunch, a dinner party pleaser or a sumptuous cake that Nigella Lawson would be proud of. In case you’re stuck in a food rut, however, here are some of our readers’ fail-safe recipes from around the world to add your repertoire. Bon appétit!
Katherine Thomson, UK: Mirin-glazed Salmon
“This mirin-glazed salmon is my favourite healthy mid-week meal. It’s a super-easy Nigella Lawson classic – we serve it with a delicious cold noodle salad instead of sushi rice.”
Ingredients (serves two):
- 2 salmon fillets
- 60ml mirin
- 60ml soy sauce
- 50 grams light brown sugar (or just a teaspoonful, if you like)
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- spring onion – a handful, sliced
- bean sprouts – a handful
- 1 packet of mangetout (snow peas), steamed but still crunchy
- sesame oil
- toasted sesame seeds
- juice of half a lime
- coriander – a handful, roughly chopped
- 1 packet egg noodles
- Marinate the salmon in the mirin, soy and sugar for about five minutes, turning occasionally. Meanwhile, prep the salad by cooking the noodles to the packet instructions. Drizzle with sesame oil then leave to cool. Once cooled, mix in all the other salad ingredients (using your hands is easiest), leaving some coriander and spring onion.
- Cook the salmon in a dry, non-stick pan for 2 minutes on each side, adding the marinade juices at the end. Once cooked, plate up the noodles and top them with the salmon.
- Pour any remaining marinade juices over the salmon and finish off with the lime-juice and remaining coriander and spring onion.
Mark Montano, Philippines: Leche Flan (milk flan)
“This is the Philippine version of crème caramel. Every time we invite friends to our place for lunch or dinner, they ask me to make a leche flan for dessert. In the Philippines, leche flan is typically made by steaming it in a bain-marie; but my recipe, which I learnt from my mum, is baked in the oven.”
Ingredients (serves around six):
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 cup evaporated milk
- 1 cup condensed milk
- 6 egg yolks
- 1 whole egg
- 4 cups water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 175 degrees Celsius.
- Mix together the evaporated milk, condensed milk, egg yolks, whole egg and vanilla extract.
- In a saucepan, dissolve the brown sugar slowly until it just caramelises (take it off the heat before it goes too dark or it will have a bitter taste).
- Quickly pour the caramel into a pan or mould and swirl it so the caramel evenly covers the bottom. Top with the egg milk mixture.
- Cover the container with aluminium foil and place in a large roasting pan. Pour in hot water until it reaches up to the same height as the flan mixture.
- Bake for 45 minutes, allow to cool at room temperature and then refrigerate for a couple of hours.
- To un-mould the flan, simply run a knife around the sides, place an upside-down serving platter over the flan, then invert it! Great on its own or served with vanilla ice cream.
Be part of the great recipe swap!
If you have a fail-safe recipe you’d like to submit for our next issue, send the recipe, a photo of yourself and a few words about your dish to email@example.com. Thanks, Chef! If we publish your recipe in our magazine, you’ll be adding a great cookbook to your bookshelf. This month it’s All Minced Up, a Food Heroes cookbook that has everything you need to know about cooking delicious homemade meals with all kinds of mince, from Thai chicken cakes to turkey chorizo empañadas and Sichuan beef meatballs. Publisher: Parragon.