24 January 2012

Abel & Cole's "Cooking Outside the Box" ~ a review


~  Menu  ~

Roasted Apple and Butternut Squash Soup
Croissant Croutons
The Merest Tad of Red Wine

I wish to review a rather lovely book I discovered in the library.  It is Abel & Cole’s “Cooking Outside the Box and I picked it up because I was already vaguely familiar with their informative website and it turns out their book is exactly my kind of thing. I really like and collude in their style of recipe writing “a dollop” or a “glug” and their list of food alternatives means that, in reality, using this book one can still be creating a dish all one’s own.

Reading “Cooking Outside the Box” reminds me of when I was young; their Cheesy Woosty Eggs and Spinachio Pie recall our own dear Caribbean Banana Thingy and Toad in the Crevasse at our restaurant The House on the Strand. 

The Abel & Cole Cookbook is not brand new on the market, it was published by Collins in 2006 but if you haven’t already got a copy I really do recommend adding it to your collection.  Lots of good ideas in there including not one but two recipes for swede which I am tempted by even though I can’t abide the stuff!!! 

As I say “Cooking outside the Box” by Abel & Cole was published by Collins in September 2006.  It is an attractive hardcover book with some quirky illustrations that add to its charm  You can get it from Amazon  or Abel & Cole  will send you a free copy if you order a box of superb veg from them


Pumpkin and Apple Soup 

I decided to try this soup but in the very spirit of the book used butternut squash instead of pumpkin.  It is a simple but utterly delicious recipe involving roasting apple and pumpkin together with a little chilli till tender and yum and then puréeing it all together with some veg stock.  I couldn’t help trying the purée before adding the stock and it would make a very fine side dish.  The soup was gorgeous particularly served with croutons made from a rather stale croissant.


Leftover Croissants

Croissants, due to their flaky texture, lend themselves to some great interpretations of standard leftover bread usage.  For the croutons I just diced the croissant, tossed it with a little olive oil, sea salt and black pepper and bunged in a hot oven for a few minutes till crunchy and golden

I have posted before about Croissant French Toast in which I quite rightly said “The many layers of the cut side of the croissant go crunchy crisp; make sure to serve cut side up so that the layers trap all the gooey maple syrup and butter or what have you.”   I apologise that the picture is poor but if you’re tempted see here.

The other thing I have made with leftover croissants is bread pudding – I slice the croissant along its length and lay in the dish so that the when baked the cut edges att he top of the pudding go delicately crisp.  See recipe for Alcoholic Marmalade Bread Pudding here and adjust accordingly!

Breaking the Rules of Blogging!

On another matter I’d just like to break not one but two of "rules" of blogging:

1.   I understand one should not apologise for a large gap in posts and yet … I am so sorry I haven’t posted for a while; we have been moving my Father in Law into his own annexe – calloo callay – which has been time consuming and fraught.

2.   I intend to continue referring to my partner as “my real man” or other affectionate terms despite being informed that failing to refer to your spouse by his or her real name is a no no.  My real man (there I go now), on the other hand, is a private sort of chap and would prefer to keep his name to himself.
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2 comments:

Kavey said...

I reckon the rules are those you set yourself! Love the sound of the crispy edges of the cooked croissant!

M and N said...

I think I should get that book that would really help us in our 'britain in our kitchen challenge'.. I have been blogging for a couple of years now and never mentioned my husband's name, is that really a no no?