Things That Go ‘Pump’ In The Night!

It’s that time of year again! It seems like the Kids have only just gone back to school and then the next thing you know Halloween is here!

We normally let the kids stay up a bit later on Halloween. They don’t go out trick or treating but they love it when other children come knocking on our door.

We have our own bag of tricks and treats to give out… we have a bag full of sweet things but lurking within are a few unpleasant surprises that I have made. In the past we have had chocolate coated sprouts, last year it was chocolate coated Fishermans Friends! This year… Ahhh, that would be telling!

Kit will have used her artistic skills to make them all masks. A task which needs a lot of patience! For those that haven’t got as much may want to head over to The Amazon Halloween Store

I’m sure we will have to have a pumpkin carved out. I can’t wait until the kids are old enough to do it themselves!

We tend not to cook something special for Halloween. If anything we’ll have some jacket potatoes and fillings. Easy to prepare and fuss free. Although we quite often have baked beans with them.

Now there’s nothing wrong with the tinned variety but you just can’t beat ‘Ome Made!

It’s really quite easy to make your own baked beans and of course it’s loads cheaper. You really can customize your recipe.

Here’s a recipe that I’ve used many times. I used to make these when I was working at a Bar opposite the Sheffield Crucible and Lyceum. There was one gentleman that used to come in especially to have beans on toast (even though it wasn’t on the menu!) because they were so good!

 ‘Ome Made Baked Beans

500g dried Haricot beans (soaked overnight in cold water).

800g of chopped tomatoes (tinned or fresh)

140g tomato puree.

250ml of water.

2 teaspoon of veg bouillon.

3 cloves of garlic

1 teaspoon of chilli powder.

2 teaspoons of paprika.

2 teaspoons of dried basil.

2 teaspoons of dried oregano.

2 teaspoons of dried parsley.

3 teaspoons of sugar.

Seasoning.

Method

Drain and rinse the beans. Place the beans in a pan and cover with water. Bring to the boil and boil for ten minutes. Turn down the heat and simmer for another twenty minutes.

Drain the beans and then put in a casserole dish or oven proof pan along with all the other ingredients. There should be enough liquid to cover the beans, if not add a little more water. Put a lid on the pan and place in an oven preheated to 160°C (140°C if fan assisted). The beans should be ready after 6 hours but could happily left for 8.

This basic recipe could easily be customized to your own liking. You could try adding some fried onion, bacon, a bit of diced pork or even sausages. A little diced carrot and/or celery gives your beans a bit more depth.

If your really brave you could make your own curried beans… just don’t blame me for the after effects!

Things really could go ‘Pump’ in the night!

‘Ome Made Kebab

‘Ome Made Kebab

I have been fond of kebabs since my beer swilling teenage years… You could not beat that garlicky, salty meat stuffed into a pita with slice cabbage, grated carrot, raw onion, sliced tomato and cucumber then drizzled with lemon juice, yoghurt & mint and hot chilli sauce after a night out on the beer!

Of course once I had kids, nights out were a thing of the past and a greasy donner kebab became something I’d have once in a blue moon.

Kebab

And then I noticed that when I was having them I was enjoying them less and less. The meat seemed to have less flavour, you got less salad,yoghurt and mint seemed to not be an option and ask for lemon juice and you got funny looks. And why can’t you get a kebab in a pita anymore?

It seems that a lot of takeaways standards have dropped these days. And to be fair there is a lot of dubious establishments out there selling things they shouldn’t be to make a bigger profit. Not that I want to tar all takeaways with the same brush… there are of course some excellent takeaways out there.

The thing is, sometimes you just fancy a kebab. So it’s handy to be able to make your own.

If I had my way I would have a big rotisserie spit in one corner of the kitchen but I don’t think Kit would approve!

'Ome Made Kebab

 

So how do you get something that tastes and has the texture of a Doner meat?

I’ve found the best method is what I refer to as ‘The Big Sausage’ method!

So here’s how you make it;

You will need

1 kilo lamb mince (or beef, or a mixture)

3-4 cloves of crushed garlic

1 teaspoon salt

3 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon chilli powder

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon dried oregano

Plenty of black pepper

1/2 tablespoon oil

Put all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl. The best way to mix is with your hands, so get in there and give it a good squish. The more like a paste you can get it the better.

Once all the ingredients are well combined get a large sheet of greaseproof paper and a large sheet of tinfoil.

Lay the greaseproof paper on top of the tinfoil and then get your meat mixture and lay it out in a line, round about 12” long. Now mold the meat into a ‘Big Sausage’ shape. Once you have a rough sausage shape you can roll it in the greaseproof paper to get it nice and round and compact. Wrap your ‘Big Sausage’ in the greaseproof and then the tinfoil. Lay the package on a baking sheet or dish (some juices may escape) and put in an oven at about 165°C (145°C for fan assisted)for around 80 – 90 minutes.

The meat will now be cooked. To serve slice the meat thinly and place on a baking sheet before giving it a flash under a hot grill.

Kebab

The meat can then be served in a pita bread with Turkish Salad, yoghurt and mint and of course a good dollop of chilli sauce (preferably ‘Ome Made!) or as I’ve done here in a gigantic Naan bread which is then rolled up and sliced (and by the way if you wrap it tightly in cling film and put in the refrigerator overnight, it slices really nice and is ideal served cold on a picnic or as pack-up).

Curried Bakers Oven Lamb

Here’s a traditional English dish given an ‘Ome Made twist, to be fair it was Kits’ idea. I was just going to do the plain English dish of lamb shoulder baked on top of layers of potato and onion, which in it’s own right is delicious. Add some spice, herbs and a curry sauce though and it takes the dish to a completely different level… This really was scrumptious! This is a fantastic dish to prepare the day before so that you can bang it in the oven the next day, forget about it and get on with all those things you need to catch up on, take the kids out or… go to the pub!

  It really is simple. You will need a full or 1/2 shoulder of lamb. Some White potatoes, onions and garlic. I also used some dried mint, fresh coriander and some red chillies.

 

 

First of all slice some potatoes (skin on) thinly and some onions. These need to be layered in a deep buttered baking dish. I did about four layers adding seasoning as I went along. On the middle layer I put a heap of chopped fresh coriander, a couple of chopped red chillies and some dried mint. On the top layer I sprinkled some more mint and some black cumin seeds.

 

 

I then fried some mild curry masala in a little oil and added some chicken stock and let this cook for twenty minutes or so. Next prepare the lamb. With a sharp knife make a few slits in the meat and push in some pieces of garlic. Now rub the lamb all over with some Kashmiri Chilli powder and some ground cumin. Sit the lamb on top of the layered potatoes and onions and give it a good grind of black pepper and a good sprinkling of salt. Pour your curry sauce into the corners of the baking dish. You want enough so that it comes about 1/2 way up your potato and onion layer.

 

 

Now cover the whole baking dish with a double layer of foil, creating a tight seal.

 

 

When your ready to cook pre heat your oven to 200°c. Put the lamb in the oven and then turn the temperature down to 165°c Which means the lamb will be ready after about four hours (but should be fine up to six). If you want to cook it for longer (or your having a really long session in the pub!) then you can cook the lamb on 145°c. The lamb will then be ready after six hours but be even better after around eight hours. To finish the dish off, remove the baking dish from the oven. Carefully remove the lamb to a warmed plate or dish. The meat should be falling off the bone. The layered potatoes then need to go back in a hot oven to brown and start to crisp up. If the liquid is above the potatoes just spoon some off ’till you can see the top layer. Put the baking dish back in the oven for about twenty minutes.

 

 

To serve, pull apart the lamb, spoon out some potato into a dish and place the lamb on top, spoon a bit more of the curry sauce over. A nice dollop of natural yoghurt goes nicely with the dish but that’s all it really needs.

 

 

A tasty, warming and comforting dish for a lovely lazy Sunday. Give it a go!

 

Don’t forget you can buy ‘Ome Made Curry Masalas at www.omemade.co.uk