Montezuma’s hash

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If you Google ‘Montezuma’ you will enter into an ancient world and boost your knowledge somewhat but it will do nothing to sate your appetite. This recipe was born out of a fancy for an easy breakfast one weekend and making the most of a few ingredients that needed a bit of love which lent themselves to a Mexican inspired dish hence the slightly obscure name (got to be creative, right?). The hash includes flavours which are sweet, spicy and savoury to create a moreish meal that will certainly set you up for the day ahead. But why stop there? It would also be perfect for a light dinner.

Ingredients- serves 2-3
1 large white potato- peeled and chopped
100g chorizo- chopped
1 tsp each of ground coriander, ground cumin and paprika
1 red onion- finely sliced
2 garlic cloves- finely sliced or crushed
2 vine tomatoes- deseeded and finely chopped
1 mild green chilli- deseeded and finely chopped
2-3 eggs
1 large ripe avocado- peeled and cubed
Fresh coriander

1. Bring a medium pan of water to the boil and preheat the oven to 180c/ 160 fan whilst you peel and chop the potato into chunks. Add salt to the pan and boil until the potatoes are par boiled; drain and set aside.

2. Take a large frying pan that is large enough to fit all the dish in and that has an ovenproof handle. Heat to medium high. Dry fry the chorizo before removing from the pan and setting aside for later. Toss in the potatoes and fry them in the chorizo fat until tender and coloured.

3. When the potatoes are nearly ready, add the onion, garlic, ground coriander and ground cumin to the pan; continue to cook until the onion is softened. Return the chorizo back to the pan. Stir through the tomato as well as half of the green chilli and cook for one more minute.

4. Use a spoon to create two or three wells in the mixture and crack an egg into each. Bake in the oven until the egg whites are set but the yolk is runny.

5. Remove from the oven and sprinkle over the avocado cubes so they start to slightly warm through on top of the potatoes. Scatter the fresh coriander, remaining green chilli and paprika to finish. Serve immediately.

Montezuma’s hash- a breakfast feast fit for a king!

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Smoky Hungarian pork goulash

In honour of an upcoming trip to Budapest I thought it was only right to get into the spirit of things with a warming, spicy goulash. I have used pork here but you can use beef if you prefer. Much like a lot of traditional recipes, there is no definitive goulash recipe but this is my take on it. I slow cooked this in the oven for 3 hours but you could do it in a slow cooker if you like.

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Ingredients- serves 4

400-500g diced pork
1 large onion- chopped
2 garlic cloves- finely chopped or crushed
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp hot paprika
1 tsp caraway seeds
Pinch of all spice
Pinch cinnamon
150g button mushrooms- halved
1 tbsp tomato puree
2 tins of chopped tomatoes (use 1 if using a slow cooker)
400ml chicken stock
1 dried ancho chilli

1. Preheat the oven to 160c/ 140fan while you get cracking on the pork. Take a large casserole pan and heat a glug of oil over a medium to high heat. When the oil is hot, brown off the pork pieces a few at a time until sealed off and golden. Remove from the pan and set aside.

2. In the same pan, cook off the onion and garlic until softening. Next up goes the spices. I used a combination of smoked and hot paprika but you can adjust these to taste if you want a bit more heat. Goulash comes in a range of heats so play around! Cook the spices for a minute before adding the tomato puree for an additional minute. I also added a dried ancho chilli to give a fruity, smoked flavour which worked perfectly alongside the blend of spices.

3. Add the pork back into the pan along with the mushroom, chopped tomatoes and stock. Bring to a gentle boil before popping in the oven for 3 hours. The pork is ready when it is tender and falls apart under gentle pressure.

Serve with soured cream, sauerkraut and rice or potatoes.

A Hungarian classic that will leave everyone Hungary for more!

Spanish style marinaded quail with morcilla and pepper potatoes

A wonderous thing happened a few weeks ago when walking around Borough Market. We stumbled across a Spanish produce stall and morcilla jumped into my hands and propelled me towards the counter to seal the deal and I’m glad it did! Morcilla is a Spanish blood sausage which is perfect crumbled through dishes so this is when this recipe was born. I allowed two quail per person for a main meal but this recipe is easy to double as needed. I also served this with a dressed green bean side dish which is well worth a try so read on for the recipes for the quail, potatoes and beans!

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Ingredients- serves 2
For the quail
4 prepared quail
60ml sherry wine vinegar
40ml olive oil
1 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp runny honey
Salt and pepper

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For the potatoes
Glug of olive oil
250g new potatoes
1 large roasted red pepper- sliced
Handful of crumbled morcilla
Roughly chopped flatleaf parsley

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For the green beans
100g green beans- trimmed and cut in half
Glug of oil
1 garlic clove – finely sliced
1 shallot- finely sliced

1. Get started by making the marinade for the quail by combining the sherry wine vinegar, oil, paprika, oregano, honey and seasoning. Cover and set aside for at least an hour but longer if you have a bit more time.

2. Preheat the oven to 180c/ 160 fan when you are ready to get going, pop the quails in a roast dish and cook for around half an hour until cooked through and the juices run clear. During cooking I basted the quail in the excess marinade to keep them moist. I also covered them with foil for the first half of the cooking time before removing for the last part.

3. While the quail is roasting you can start the potatoes. Par boil the potatoes for a few minutes before removing and halving. If you halve them before cooking they can get a little soggy so this way round is better. Drain well and set aside as you heat a glug of oil in a frying pan. Pop the potatoes in the pan over a medium heat for 10 minutes until they are starting to become a little more tender and turning a light golden colour. Add in the pepper slices and crumble in the morcilla and cook for another few minutes. Sprinkle over the parsley when ready.

4. At this stage you can think about boiling a separate small pan for the green beans- multi-tasking at its best! The beans need to be boiled for 5 minutes and then removed with a slotted spoon before refreshing in a bowl of cold water. Reserve 100ml of the cooking water. Using the same pan, heat a small amount of oil and cook off the garlic and shallot for a minute or two before adding the reserved water and beans back into the pan. Pop the lid on the pan and cook for an additional few minutes until the beans are tender and the water has reduced. The water, garlic and shallot creates its own little kind of dressing.

Serve the quail, morcilla potatoes and green beans in warmed dishes so everyone can help themselves.

Spanish style quail with morcilla potatoes and dressed green beans- a perfect way to try morcilla!

Spanish style baked brunch eggs

Feast your eyes on this satisfying brunch idea. Long gone are the days of fried breakfasts and soggy cereal so treat yourself to this spicy dish and kick-start your day!

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Ingredients- serves 2
1 tsp vegetable oil
1 small onion- finely diced
1/2 red chilli- finely chopped
Pinch of paprika
400g tinned chopped tomatoes
150g chorizo
 2 handfuls of baby spinach- shredded
2 large eggs
Salt and pepper

1. Before you get started preheat the oven to 180c/ 160 fan. Heat the vegetable oil over a medium heat and cook the onion and chilli until softened. Add a good pinch of paprika (I like smoked paprika) and continue to cook for a further minute.

2. Fry the chorizo in a separate small pan over a medium/ high heat and fry until golden and crisp. You could also add the chorizo to the onion and cook off together if you prefer.

3. Add the tomatoes to the onion and chilli and simmer for a few minutes. Shred the spinach and add to the pan. Remember spinach wilts quickly so do add more as you go if you like. Season to taste.

4. Divide the sauce into two small over proof dishes and use a spoon to create a well in the middle of each of them. Crack one egg into each dish and pop into the oven for around 15 minutes depending on how you like your eggs done.

5. Serve with a fresh toasted bread and dig in! Sourdough bread is delicious with this dish to dip.

Brunch is served! Try this and you’ll never look back!