Friday, September 23, 2011


This week, after an over-carnivorous jolly at Abergavenny Food Festival, I opted to go meat free. Why? To boost veg intake, to be friendly to the environment, to save a bit of money and to try new things...Yep, all those things. Halo.

So far, the most notable change has been my weak, weak willpower.

There was a minor blip just 24 hours into my new found vegetarianism when I tucked into a juicy leg of chicken without even thinking. The slip-up was purely accidental and I didn't clock until the chook was done and digested. Since, aside from dreaming of more chicken legs, I have been trying to think before I eat.

So far, though shaky, so good. I've denied myself beautiful black pudding-stuffed grouse, and mac and cheese with minuscule shards of pancetta (bacon's just seasoning, right?). I refused leftover lamb and date tagine at work today - something I have never be known to do before. I even used vegetable stock in the recipe below.

The truth is, I often cook vegetarian food - my last blog was beetroot ravioli with sage butter and it was to die for. I certainly don't think you need to eat meat with every meal - vegetables are so very delicious on their own - but I do think that meat is damn hard to turn down when it's offered. This week has been fickle but strengthening, so maybe a week once a month will produce a less-meat-eating-me and - we'll see - a less greedy one...

Here is tonight's vegetarian supper which arrived crispy and light and sweet. No craving the big stuff as of yet.


serves 2


2 small floury potatoes, such as Maris Piper, peeled and halved
1 large shallot, thinly sliced
1 clove garlic, crushed
handful of fresh mint leaves
200g petit pois
100g Parmesan, grated
1 tbsp vegetable stock
3 free-range eggs, yolks separated from whites
knob of butter
salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4

Bring a pan of salted water to the boil and cook the potatoes until soft. Drain and slice.

Meanwhile, in another saucepan, melt a small knob of butter. Add the onions and soften. Follow with the garlic, peas and stock. Season well and add the Parmesan. Roughly blend with a hand whizzer.

Layer a small, shallow, buttered oven dish with the slice potatoes. Cover with the pea mixture and set aside. Lightly whisk the yolks and season. Now whisk the egg whites in a dry, non-oily bowl until stiff. Gently fold the yolks into the whites - you don't want to bash the air out - and pour over the peas and potatoes.

Place the dish carefully into the oven. Cook for approximately 20 minutes or until the top of the frittata is golden. Drizzle with olive oil, a pinch of sea salt flakes and serve.

Serve as it is with a watercress and spinach salad (or as a perfect accompaniment to a roast chicken lunch. Ouch).

1 comment:

  1. Looks lovely, good timing for your post as I am battling guilty pangs for never managing a vegetarian day, let alone week! Must try harder!