Diamond Jubilee Dining Week Continues: UN-fish and chips and leftover pie

un-fish and chips- Southbank London


John with his veggie fish and chips in London. We were there on his birthday last year.


For our homemade un-fish and chips, I choose to coat the slow melt cheese with egg, crushed Ritz crackers and a little flour. Yeah, I know it’s not deep-fried, but with melted butter in the pan that helped make up the difference.

I tried to make mushy peas again, but learned a hard lesson– don’t take a walk around the block and leave mushy peas simmering away with too little water in the pan. We had to quickly substitute non-mushy peas (they were fresh English peas though).

I also oven baked my chips– I know how “un” can you get, but it was a week night, what can I say.

The next night we had leftover Will and Kate Beer and Barley Mushroom pie with boiled potatoes and corn. It freezes and reheats so well.

Another Great Britain Jamie Oliver (Stephy tweaked veggie) recipe. Check out the original blog post for the how-tos!


One more meal to go and the celebrations eating ends– parting is such sweet sorrow.

Even Paul thinks so.


Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Dining Week: ER Coronation Tofu!

For our second night of celebration dining I decided to make Jamie Oliver’s ER Diamond Jubilee Chicken, but without the chicken. Since I’ve never had the classic coronation chicken I had no idea what to expect (and then I substituted garlic tofu on top of that!)

I was worried it was going to be more of a mystery jubilee than a regal jewel, but as all of Jamie’s recipes turn out (even with my American-Vegetarian finagling) it was really good!

First I cut the tofu and marinated it juice from one lemon, some fresh pineapple chunks, a thumb-sized piece of diced fresh ginger, 4 diced garlic cloves, and some olive oil. I only let it sit for around 30 minutes. Keep the marinade! You’ll need it later.


Then I sautéed the tofu until golden and crispy in more olive oil.


Then added all the spices. Hang on to your crowns: 1 tsp of coriander, 1/2 TBSP of garam masala, 1/2 a tsp of turmeric, 1/4 a tsp of chili powder, 1/4 of a tsp of red chili flakes (add more if you want it spicier- we’re mild people at our house). Wow, it seemed like a lot more when I was making it.


After cooking in the spices ( 5 minutes or so) I added a cup of chopped fresh pineapple, a handful of cashews, 1/2 a tsp of cumin seeds, 1 TBSP of sesame seeds, and 3 or 4 sliced green onions.
I also added back in my marinating mix.


The last steps- squeeze juice from one lime and lightly stir in a TBSP of plain yogurt (don’t skip the yogurt, it adds a richness you won’t want to miss!)


Oh! And I almost forgot the mini yorkies! I made Yorkshire puddings for the first time. Jamie recommended a mini muffin pan and that’s what I went with.


They’re basically like popovers, but a little denser. The smoking hot oil in the muffin pan freaked me out a little, but it turned out to be pretty easy and yummy.



The whole meal included: the jubilee tofu on top of cucumber slices, butter onion sweet rice, salad and the Yorkshire puddings.



Ta until tomorrow!

Queen E. Diamond Jubilee Week: Homemade Pizza Express

To celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s time on the throne, I decided we should eat British all week! We usually only eat British on occasional Sundays, but celebrations and chance to dream about our home away from home don’t come as often as we would like.

Fridays are pizza nights for us, so I decided to try and recreate the pizza with a salad in the middle that I’ve had twice at Pizza Express (once in Liverpool and once on Baker Street in London). Pizza Express is a chain restaurants that have become our trusty fallback favorite for 4 reasons: 1) they are everywhere 2) the food is pretty good 3) they give you a choice when it comes to wine glass size- regular and large (God bless’em) and 4) they serve dough balls instead of breadsticks.

I made the dough balls first.





Ok- so I had to make a pizza with a hole in the center. I settled on using an oven safe bowl and cut a circle around the bowl with my knife, remove the middle dough, grease up the bowl and put it back in the center.


I used a Cabernet pizza sauce I created and froze two weeks ago. You will noticed I added a rim of dough to keep my toppings from running all over the place.


And then added my toppings: 3 cheese for John and marinated olives, mozzerella, fava beans and fresh grape tomatoes. Why not go a little exotic when you’re making a pizza with a hole in the middle anyway.


In the oven it goes!


When I took it out I had a momentary panic that I wouldn’t be able to remove the bowl without hurting the pizza.
But, no worries, it came out with a little wiggling. Without the salad it kind of looks like a pizza donut.


Then all you do is add the salad to the middle and you have a Pizza Express creation right in your kitchen.


Oh, and my wineglasses weren’t “large” enough so I had to drink two of these to keep the experience real!