The Kitchen’s Nearly In…

It’s been a very busy few days here. Extra people in the flat like carpenters and plumbers…

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Tools everywhere…

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But now we have a kitchen worktop…

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There’s no cooking being done yet in the new kitchen, but no one’s going hungry!

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Oven Roasted Vegetables with Cod Fillet

In Spain when we want to enjoy cod, we buy it dried and salted, Bacalao. And very good it is too once it has been desalted and cooked with love. Nowadays fresh cod is starting to make its way into the Spanish markets too, but in the UK, fresh is what is available – at a price.

In our temporary adopted home of Bexhill on Sea, we have an amazing fish and chip shop very close to home, and we do indulge ourselves from time to time. However, fried food like this is a rare treat and we bought some delicious fresh cod fillets to enjoy at home, cooked in a healthier way.

Ingredients (per person)

  • One fresh fillet of cod
  • One medium potato, peeled and cut into large cubes
  • A quarter of a red pepper, cut into large chunks or strips
  • A large carrot, peeled and cut into chunks or thick strips
  • Half an onion, cut into about 6 pieces
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • Approx 6 cherry tomatoes or one or two small tomatoes cut into halves or quarters
  • About 6 spears of asparagus cut into 4 pieces
  • About 6 green beans cut into 4 pieces
  • Olive oil
  • Salt & pepper
  • Lemon

Do feel free to mix up the vegetables, depending on what you have available. Make sure to cut the root vegetables into chunks approximately the same size as these will start to cook first.

In a large oven tray lined with foil, put the potatoes and carrots, pour over a little oil and salt and mix in, ensuring all the vegetables have a light coating of oil. Bake on medium/high for about 25 minutes then add the rest of the vegetables, add a little more oil and season with salt and pepper. When the vegetables start to turn brown at the edges and the potatoes and carrots are soft enough to insert the point of a knife, reduce the heat to medium.

Place the cod fillets on top of the vegetables (this would also work well with any other firm fish such as salmon) season and cover with foil. Cook for about 15 minutes more. Check that the fish is cooked through by inserting a fork gently into the fish and looking to see that the fish is no longer transparent in the centre.

Serve the cod on top of the vegetables with a drizzle of oil and a squeeze of lemon juice.

And now for a gratuitous shot of the work in progress. The kitchen´s still not looking like a kitchen, but it´s taking shape…at least it no longer has a bathroom in it!

Making progress…Making Food

It´s been a while, I´ve missed you all. Lots of news to update you with though.

Work has been going well, the kitchen has now moved on from this…

To this…

Just the final touches to the units (handles, skirting boards), then the wall units to follow. There´s still wall tiling to go but … pah…easy peasy compared to some of the things we´ve been doing.

Of course, when you have a hob and an oven (as of yesterday) you can COOK!! Oh what joy to have a relatively dust free area to prepare meals that are not sandwiches filled with cement or fried eggs lightly dusted with sawdust.

Supper was a simple meal of grilled lamb chops sprinkled with Malvern sea salt and a squeeze of lemon juice, with rice mixed with garlic mushrooms. It was nothing complicated but with a good glass of wine it tasted like the food of the gods.

Lunch today was a sharing platter (we have a lot of those as it means less washing up, very important when you´ve had to wash up with cold water in a bucket!). Good old tortilla, a leftover corn cob and some salami from home with a little salad made with sweet juicy local tomatoes.

Hopefully soon I´ll be able to get a little more adventurous in the kitchen, and we´re not talking about power tools here.  So…a little more news which may leave some of you wondering if we both need to get our heads examined. Things have gone so well, and we have learned so much…we´re going to do it all over again when we´ve finished this house. Yes, you heard right. Just around the corner from this house was another one crying out for some love and attention. It has a very similar scary carpet but we´ve learnt not to fear the shag pile.

It´s been more recently modernized…we´re talking some time during the late 1970s as opposed to the early 1960s in the current house, so a little less work. But not much.

No…your eyes do not deceive you…that´s a downstairs bathroom coming off the “oh so modern” kitchen.

We´re getting the internet installed though, so cross your fingers, toes and eyes for us and hopefully in about a week I´ll be chatting away to you all in my usual fashion and hopefully doing a bit more talking about cooking and a little less about house renovating. But I´m not making any rash promises!