Mark’s breakfast for the hungry

Mark, the baker, once used to live in Adamsdown  and work at a workers co-operative on Clifton street called ‘Hungry Planet’. Some Adamsdown residents still recall those days with a bit of nostalgia. ‘Hungry Planet’ was a healthfood store, a cafe and a bakery with its core values being positive social change, ethical and sustainable food.

Sadly,’Hungry Planet’ had to close its doors a few years ago. After the closure Mark still continued baking bread and  grew it into something new, something that provides Cardiff with healthy and tasty sourdough bread. ‘Riverside Sourdough’, an artisan sourdough bread bakery was born and has been running ever since.

Mark shared his daily breakfast recipe which is a selection his favourite ingredients thrown together to create a really nourishing and satisfying breakfast. Perfect if you’re hungry.

Ingredients

6-7  leaves of steamed kale or chard, or other greens

a few slices of feta cheese, cubed

5-6 olives

a handful of sauerkraut, or other fermented vegetables

a slice or two of sourdough (Mark usually has a gluten-free or spelt bread)

1-2 tinned sardines or boiled egged, chopped, if not using sardines

1-2 tbsp of   pumpkin, sunflower, sesame seeds mixture

tamari sauce

1 tbsp lemon juice

2 tbsp olive oil

Method

1.Prepare the seed mixture. Toast the seeds in the pan on a low heat for about 6 minutes. Leave to cool. Add tamari or soya sauce.

2.Assemble everything in one plate and enjoy!

This is my take on Mark’s super breakfast

 

Jannet’s fried bread and jam

This is the recipe Jannet remembers from her childhood. She as a child would sit round the table with other kids eagerly waiting while their dad was making them fried bread and jam, a recipe he learned while away in the army.

It’s very simple, very delicious and great for breakfasts. In order to enhance the flavour, I recommend sprinkling a bit of nutmeg on top of bread. Nutmeg seems to have been forgotten now, but it is still remembered amongst older generation and for a good reason. It adds this inexplicable taste that is somewhere between salty and sour. It works great with sweet stuff such as bread with jam.

Ingredients (serves 1)

1. Two slices of bread
2. 1 tbsp jam (I used strawberry jam)
3. 3 tbsp flour
4. 1 1/2 tbsp milk
5. a pinch of salt
6. a pinch of nutmeg

Method

1. Spread jam on bread.
2. Mix flour with milk and salt. Add more milk if needed.
3. Roll or spread the batter on bread and fry it in a bit of oil or butter until brown.
4. When done, sprinkle a bit of nutmeg, it adds a lovely extra taste.
5. Enjoy!

And here is another one called eggy bread. Also very delicious and simple to make.

Ingredients (serves 1)

1. Two slices of bread
2. 1 tbsp of jam
3. 1 Egg
4. A pinch of salt
5. A pinch of nutmeg

Method

1. Spread jam on bread.
2. Mix egg in a bowl. Add a bit of salt.
3. Roll bread in egg mixture and fry it in the pan in oil or butter until brown.
4. Sprinkle a bit of nutmeg. Enjoy!

Zara’s lamb and herb stew

Zara is an Iranian woman whom I’ve met in Oasis- a place in Splott buzzing with workshops, food events and other creative activities. I asked her if she could share a recipe that is special in some way, or has some story. She said she knew just the one. ‘Ghormeh sabzi’, she told me with a smile on her face. It is a herb stew, ‘ghormeh’ from Iranian means ‘a stew’ and sabzi ‘greens’. Parsley, coriander and fenugreek are slowly cooked making this dish so flavoursome.

Fenugreek leaves are one of the key ingredients in Ghormerh sabzi. Suprisingly fenugreek is used in making a fake maple syrup as it has a very similar aroma. When it’s cooked and combined with other flavours though it adds nice and subtle bitterness and sweetness to the dish. If it’s difficult to come by fresh fenugreek leaves, you can use dried fenugreek seeds, but toast it in the pan beforehand to reduce the bitterness.

Traditionally it is also cooked using limoo amani or dried limes which are sun-dried limes. In Persian cuisine they are often used in flavoring stews and soups.

It is a very special recipe in that it’s very very tasty. It is one of the best stews I’ve ever had. I must admit that the great quality lamb from Cardiff central market played a great part in this too.

Ingredients (serves 2)

1. A bunch of parsley

2. A bunch of corriander

3. 1/2 cup fresh fenugreek, or 2 tbsp dried fenugreek

4. 1 onion, diced

5. 400g stewing lamb, diced

6. 1 tsp tumeric

7. 1 can of kidney beans (or 250g if soaking and boiling)

8. 3 dried limes (limoo amani) or 3 tbsp of lime juice (I replaced it with lemon juice)

9. A pinch of salt and pepper

10. 1 cup of rice

Method

1. Finely chop parsley, coriander and fenugreek (if using fresh) and fry in a bit of oil. Put it is aside for now.
2. Fry deiced onion until golden. Then add lamb, tumeric, salt and pepper and fry until it has browned a bit.
3. Add all the other ingredients- herbs, beans, lemon, fenugreek (if using dry). Add water so that it covers the stew and let it cook for about 1 1/2hours.
4. In the meanwhile cook rice.
5. Assemble everything in one plate and enjoy!

Nuno’s Milho Frito

I’ve met Nuno in a newly opened Portuguese community resource centre on Clifton street where he works. He shared with me one of the classics of Portuguese cuisine – Milho Frito, which is a side-dish usually eaten with tuna steak soup. Milho frito is made of polenta, which is a staple food in Portugal. It’s loved because it’s cheap and goes a long way. Milho Frito can also be eaten as a side-dish with eggs or beans. If Nuno was making it he would make a big batch to serve a crowd. I’ve adapted the recipe below to feed only two. It makes it easier to cook and to avoid the dreaded lumps.

Ingredients

1. 1/2 cup polenta
2. 2 1/2 cups water
3. 1 cube of stock
4. 1 small onion, diced
5. one clove of minced garlic
6. 6-7 leaves of kale leaves, minced
7. a pinch of salt

Method

1. Fry onion and garlic in a pan with a bit of oil until brown.
2. Add water and a stock cube. Heat it up until boiling.
3. When water is boiling add polenta through the sieve in order to avoid lumps and keep stirring. This is the decisive moment when cooking polenta, and stirring it will help prevent the lumps. Another way to avoid lumps is to put polenta in a bit of water and leave it for a few minutes before putting it into a pot. This can help reduce the lumps significantly.
4. Add the minced kale to the pot, and mix it. Keep cooking until water is absorbed, for about 15 minutes.
5. When cooked put it in a tray and let it cool. When completely cold, cut it in squares and fry in a bit of oil.
6. Enjoy!

In light of Angharad

People’s stories often intertwine in the most unexpected ways, and so it was with the story of Angharad, a fair Welsh woman walking in the footsteps of photographer Tom Mathias.
Mathias was from West Wales, and with his camera he documented much of the daily life in Cilgerran where he lived. In 2015, Angharard organised an event in Cilgerran called ‘In light of Tom Mathias’, breathing life back into those moments captured in Mathias’s camera almost a century before.

And now Angharad has become part of my photographic story, as I search through the daily life of Adamsdown, looking for people and their recipes. It was Angharad who introduced me to some of Adamsdown’s older residents, people who she meets with friendliness and cheer – as she does with everyone, making everyone feel at home even those from far away lands. These recipes she’s shared with me were taught to her by her forefathers.

Glamorgan sausages. You can fry them in the pan or cook in the oven for a slightly healthier option. It will also be more evenly cooked and less burnt.

Ingredients

1. 25g butter
2. 2 leeks, sliced in circles
3. 175g breadcrumbs
4. 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
5. 150g grated Caerphilly cheese
6. 2 free range eggs.
7. 100ml milk
8. 1 tsp mustard
9. a pinch of salt and black pepper.

Method

1. Melt butter, add the leeks and fry them until golden.
2. Then add them to a big bowl together with 125g of breadcrumbs, parsley, cheese, milk and mustard. Mix it all.
3. In a separate plate break the eggs. Put the remaining breadcrumbs onto a separate plate. Shape the main mixture into sausages, role them on eggs and the remaining breadcrumbs. Put the pan on heat and let the oil start to sizzle. Then put the sausages and fry them for 3-5 minutes.
4. Enjoy!!

Sweetcorn fritters. This recipe requires some extra spices, but the rest of the ingredients are just potatoes, sweetcorn, eggs and onions.

1. 4 medium potatoes
2. 1 garlic clove, minced
3. 1 onion
4. 200 g sweetcorn
5. 2 eggs
6. 1 tsp paprika
7. 1 tsp ground corriander
8. 1/2 tsp tumeric
9. 1/2 tsp garam masala

Method

1. Boil potatoes. Then mash them in a bowl.
2. Slice the onion, fry it in the pan with garlic and add it to potatoes.
3. Mix the eggs and add it to potatoes.
4. Add all the remaining ingredients and mix them all.
5. Put the pan on heat, add oil and let it heat up. Make pancakes out of the mixture and add them to the sizzling oil. Fry for about 3-5 minutes on each size.
6. Enjoy!!

Christine’s comforting ‘frogspawn’

With this recipe I felt like I have unearthed a treasure. It was passed on to me by Christine, an elderly lady that used to do lots of cooking even for 30 or so years ago. She would have three soups simmering at a time to feed her hungry family.

I later found out that tapioca, which is a pure starch extracted from a Cassava root, was much more popular in the past. You could buy it in every corner shop, according to Christine. Tapioca pudding or so-called ‘frogspawn’ used to be a British school lunch classic. It wasn’t particularly loved, but it is still vividly remembered amongst older generations. Despite the name it has nothing to do with frogs or toads, or other creatures. Just a lovely (in my opinion) comforting thing with little translucent perls that stare at you from your a plate like an army of frogspawns in the pond. They are soft and chewy and taste a lot like a rice pudding, just the texture is more bubbly.

Tapioca pudding is very simple to make and has very few ingredients.

Ingredients

1/2 cup of tapioca
1 1/2 cup of water
1 1/2 cup of milk (I used almond milk)
a pinch of salt
1 tbsp of sugar
a pinch of grated nutmeg

Method

1. Mix tapioca with water, milk, salt and sugar in a pot. Let it simmer for 30 minutes (check to see if tapioca perls are soft)
2. When it’s cooked grate a bit of nutmeg on top.
3. Enjoy!!!

The hunter-gatherer Kate and her (slug) omelette

Kate likes exploring the outside world and being in different places. She likes going on a food hunt, whether its skipping through a surplus food from supermarkets (although those days are way behind her), or foraging in parks, orchards or a back garden. She is curious about food textures and creatures that live outside her door, most notably the slugs. She got into them after she was invited to share her harvest with friends at the party. The only thing she could harvest were those slimy creatures, and Kate boldly gave it a go. This is how the ‘Slug omelette’ came about.
She learned that slugs require special preparation, such as starving them and then boiling to help remove toxins and parasites. Since it takes time to prepare and it’s not a slug season yet, Kate served me a nice omelette with mushrooms instead, texture of which is similar to that of a slug.

Adamsdown hasn’t been Kate’s neighbourhood for that long, but it looks like she’s putting roots down Adamsdown ‘community soil’. She and a friend have started a small co-working studio space that will also have a small sourdough bakery, a pottery, a community kitchen and quite possibly a sauna (!).

Ingredients:

1. 5 eggs
2. a handful of mushrooms (100-200g) or specially prepared slugs
3. a pinch of salt, and other spices or herbs (e.g. thyme)

Method

1. Slice the mushrooms and fry them in the pan with some oil until brown. Add salt, pepper and thyme.
2. Beat the eggs in a bowl and when mushrooms are ready pour it over.
3. Fry it until cooked , then turn upside (can use a plate) down and cook the other side.
4. Enjoy!

Huw’s sweet semolina

I decided to cook something that makes me feel really happy. This dessert is super delicious and also brings back some really good memories. A few years ago I was in Australia, volunteering at an Organic farm run by Krishna devotees, they were great people to be around and the food was so good there I almost didn’t want to leave – Keshava (one of the devotees) told me that’s the reason he joined the ashram!
The recipe I use is from a book called the Higher Taste, it’s a vegetarian cookbook that you’ll find in pretty much every Hare Krishna cafe, anywhere in the world.

This is the first time I’m following the recipe properly, I normally use dates instead of raisins and walnuts. That’s how we made it at the farm for their monthly feast. For me the most important part is to chant Hare Krishna while you “sacrifice the semolina grains” in the heat of the pan.

Ingredients

2 3/4 cups water
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup raisins
140 g unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups semolina

1/3 cup of walnuts

Method.

1. Combine water, sugar and raisins in a pot. Heat it and stir it until sugar is dissolved.
2. Put the butter in saucepan and melt it over low heat. Then add the semolina and stir the grains for about 15 minutes or until they become darker and more fragrant. Add walnuts for the last 5 minutes of toasting.
3. Increase heat for water and sugar and let it reduce. Increase the heat and stir continuously semolina for 1 minute. Then remove it from heat and slowly pour the sugary water over it slowly while stirring semolina making sure the liquid is absorbed.

4. Put it back on the heat and stir it for another 5 minutes until it becomes pudding-like and the grains have absorbed the water.

5. Enjoy!! (It’s very nice with some custard)

Ailsa

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Ailsa was looking for a vegetarian recipe that would delight her vegetarian friends. Her University friend Deri, the Ethical Chef himself, came to her assistance. He taught her the ways of cooking the hearty and nourishing Sweet potato, chickpea and spinach curry. This is the recipe she shared with me…

When I arrive cooking has already begun: vegetables, chickpeas, herbs and spices are eagerly bubbling in the pot, selflessly releasing all the goodness they have. They will become a part of something greater. In the meantime, Ailsa and I talk life in Splott. I share my knowledge of community groups and events, places to shop and eat out, locals with some stories to tell. Our lively chat is frequently intercepted by Ailsa’s sizeable and eager dog getting concerned about nearby wandering cats or smells coming out of that very red pot.

Ingredients

1 red onion
2 large sweet potatoes, diced
1 tin of chickpeas, washed and drained
a handful of fresh baby plum tomatoes
small stub (1.5inch) of fresh ginger
3 cloves of garlic
100g fresh spinach
2 small chillies
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp cayenne chilli pepper
1/2 tsp tumeric
salt, pepper
2 pints vegetable stock
1/2 lemon juice

Method

1. Fry off the chopped onions, garlic, ginger, chillies, spices in oil.
2. Add the chickpeas togethre with vegetable stock.
3. Add the chopped sweet potatoes and stir.
4. Add spinach, tomatoes and stir.
5. Add salt and pepper to taste.
6. Allow to simmer for 30 minutes.
7. Add 1/2 a lemon juice and fresh coriander to finish.

Enjoy!

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Boudicca bakes

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Boudicca bakes because she enjoys it and because that’s something one can do when one has kids. ‘Boudicca bakes’ is the name of her cake business that she’s been working on for a while. 10 years, to be precise, of perfecting brownies, flapjacks and other sweet delights.
For my food project she very kindly baked a flapjack covered with yoghurt.

Ingredients

Butter 180g
Maple syrup 100g
Golden syru 50g
Dark brown sugar 45g
Salt 1/2tsp
Ginger powder 1tsp
Cinnamon 1/2 tsp
Pecan and maple cereal (Aldi pecan maple crisp) 150g
Pecans 50g
Oats 280g
Mixed dried fruit (cranberry and raisin) 100g
White chocolate 50g

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees.
2. Melt together the butter, syrups, and sugar on a low heat.
3. Add the salt, ginger and cinanamon and stir together.
4. Roughly chop the pecans and the cereal. You can pulse it in the blender or food processor into smallish chunks.
5. Add the nuts, cereal, fruit and oats to the butter mix and stir thouroughly.
6. Pour into a lined 8inch cake tin and bake for 15 minutes.
7. Once cooled drizzle with melted white chocolate.

I brought the flapjack cake home, put it on my kitchen counter. That evening it started quickly disappearing from the counter. I had to photograph it before it was gone. So here is a photo of it midway through to disappearing.

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