On the menu – pasta fail/rescue, harissa chicken, a winter salad and chai tea banana cake

Sunday

I attempted to make Gino D’Acampo’s Fusilli Al Quattro Formaggi from Gino’s Pasta, the sauce was interesting, it didn’t require a roux but I think that’s where it fell down. You heat the milk then add the cheese and well, the sauce just looked totally split and not at all appetising. Maybe that’s what it was meant to look like but I wasn’t going to take the risk.

With pasta already cooking on the hob, I had to think quickly and luckily I remembered that Nigella had been tweeting about her marmite pasta recipe, which I’ve made before, ages ago and I knew that it was good, so St. Nigella and a jar of Marmite to the rescue, we had something to eat for tea.

Monday

This is Grilled Harissa Chicken with Preserved Lemon, Couscous and Herbs from Signe Johanson’s Solo and it was rather nice. I went for the more salad-y combination of veg rather than the greens from the main recipe.

Thursday

This was adapted from the Winter Chopped Salad with Candied Seeds from Anna Jones’ A Modern Way To Cook, I added chicken (because I needed to use it up, tossing it in maple syrup towards the end of the cooking time), replaced the pecans with walnuts, replaced the winter greens with rocket and skipped the pear and it was really nice.

This is ‘naked’ Chai Tea Banana Cake from Nadiya’s British Food Adventure, it’s naked because I didn’t make the cheesecake topping, which I’m guessing is the milky part of the chai tea. Anyway, it’s nice as it is, I had some bananas to use up and I fancied something slightly different from the normal banana bread. It has, as well as obviously banana, cinnamon, cardamom and ginger. It has the comfort-ness of a good banana bread with the something extra of the spices.

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