As I am sure you're realised friends and food go hand in hand in this house. We have friends around for meals, we go to friends for meals and we have friends who work in the industry so we go to their restaurants for meals. Prior to restaurants and pubs reopening in July this year we made a trip down to The Duck Inn, Pett Bottom, to meet up with Dean and Becky for a catch up and of course a meal. I can never go empty handed, it is not in my nature, so I offered to do cocktails and starters. Jalapeno Popper dip was the winner in this case for starters/snacks. This is a recipe I wrestled off my friend Sonali, who made it a few years ago for Kyle's birthday and I've not made it since she sent it to me. Full disclosure; Sonali got the recipe off someone else and can't remember who.
Disclaimer - if you are on a diet, this recipe is NOT for you! If you love cheese, lots of cheese, sour cream and butter, this recipe IS for you.
Dean and Becky are extremely close friends and we adhered to all government guidelines when we saw them.
1 jar pickled jalapenos, diced
1 kg pack soft cream cheese
1 cup sour cream
1 tsp garlic powder
2 cups grated mature Cheddar cheese
3/4 grated Parmesan cheese (not the pre-grated stuff)
1 cup panko bread crumbs
4 Tbsp butter, melted
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 bunch flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
5 - 6 spring onions finely sliced, optional garnish
Preheat oven to 190 degrees C. Using a hand mixer beat cream cheese, sour cream and garlic powder until fluffy. Add cheeses and jalapenos, mix well. Spread into an oven proof dish. Combine the ingredients for the topping, do not include the spring onions, and sprinkle evenly over the dip.
Bake for 15 - 20 minutes or until the topping is golden brown and the dip is bubbling. Remove from the oven, garnish with the spring onions and serve.
I served this with a mix of tortilla crisps, toasted baguette, olives, charcuterie and pickles. In the past we've even put this on a roll with steak for a dirty, cheesy, steak sandwich. Whatever floats your boat. Once you taste this you will want to put it on everything!
Needless to say we had a wonderful time with friends and ate and drank incredibly well. Dean did the most amazing roast pork with roast carrots, caramelised shallot and apple jus and roast potatoes. We rounded the day off with Cards Against Humanity, a White Rabbit cocktail and a cheeseboard. As if we were low on cheese.
Happy eating peeps and I hope you have been able to make it back to your local pubs and restaurants to show your love and support for what they do. Check out The Duck Inn if you are in Kent for delicious food and a warm welcome.
It is bank holiday Monday, we have had a wonderful weekend filled with great food, wine and good company and need to get back to our normal eating routine before tomorrow. I just wanted something light but tasty for lunch so whipped this up. A couple of recipes combined but always with the Nicole twist.
2 onions, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 tsp turmeric
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp cumin seeds
1 kg carrots, peeled and sliced
1.25 l fresh chicken stock
1 Tbsp lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
100 gr Chorizo
1 Tbsp Greek yoghurt or sour cream
Heat a pan on medium, add olive oil and butter. When the butter has melted add the onion, ginger and garlic and sweat for 10 minutes until translucent. Add the spices and cook for 2 minutes until aromatic and perfumed. Add the carrots and cook on a low heat until softened, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper.
Add the stock and simmer for 20 minutes until the carrots are soft. Leave to cool and then blend until smooth in batches. Stir in the lemon juice. Heat a frying pan with a dash of olive oil and add the sliced chorizo. Sautée until almost crispy.
Serve in a bowl with a dollop of yoghurt or sour cream. Top with the chorizo and a drizzle of the oil from the chorizo pan. Pop a crusty roll on the side and you have a fabulous lunch. Enjoy!
Good food is very often, even most often, simple food. - Anthony Bourdain