Oh dear! A streak of bad luck has befallen our cooking!
First up, yesterday for dinner I made Vegan Yum Yum’s Crispy Sweet & Sour Tofu. This a great site, full of imaginative vegan grub, and lots of beautiful food photography. I had a bit of an urge on me for good old fashioned radioactive coloured sweet and sour sauce, like the very first Chinese take out I had age 12 in my cousin Carmel’s house. I thought it was so exotic. It was, compared to our standard fare.
So in this recipe, the tofu method was spot on. I didn’t have any egg replacer, being not of the vegan variety, but the tofu went lovely and crispy using the cornflour alone. But, it was thrown across the table by his nibs, who clearly prefers my other tofu dish. As for the sauce, hmm, I think I’ll keep looking. It was a great consistency, but I think it was the ketchup I didn’t like in it. Pineapple might not be authentically Chinese (or is it? is ketchup?) but I think this might be what this dish was lacking for me. Hungry Dom does not tolerate new foods for long if he doesn’t like the first bite, so it was forkfuls of plain white rice for the rest of his dinner. Actually, the rice was perfectly cooked, using this method – Rinse basmati really well in a sieve, cover with water – 1.5cms approx above the rice (I start with boiling water). 12 mins covered on a low simmer. Voilà.
Today, it was husbag’s turn. He turned a blind eye to the whole supermarket shop I did yesterday after his head was turned by The Good Cook on BBC. Off we went to Fallon & Byrne for some gorgeous overpriced veg, and a trip to the offie for Vermouth. He likes an aul cheffy dish (read: using every saucepan and utensil going) and made this Braised Fennel with Butter & Parmesan for a light dinner this evening. Fennel cooked like this is so good for baby led weaning – perfect fingers of sliced fennel to hold, soft enough to chew easily. To our adult taste buds, this was divine. The vermouth is not a strong taste and the alcohol is clearly gone. I know fennel is divisive, but one quick chew and it was spat out by our cantankerous toddler. Talk about barely giving it a chance!
Honestly though, this is the kind of dish I’d serve as part of my meal if I were on Come Dine With Me. Child doesn’t know what he’s missing. He had a yogurt and 2 kiwi’s for his dinner instead.
To make up for such rejection, I decided I’d make a sure fire winner, with none for baby! Step up the fabulous Babaduck, whose baked goods are becoming legendary via their pale imitations round here. Husbag asked in a urgent worried tone if any of these were going into work with me as I took them out of the oven. Take that baby boy… we’re eating all of these now you’re gone to bed…