Veal and Eggplant Bake (Borjúhús és padlizsán süt)

Veal and Eggplant Bake

Veal and Eggplant Bake

Straight up I have to confess that I have no idea if the Hungarian name I have given is correct, so please help me out if you know the “authentic” name for this dish. In our place it’s simply referred to as Hungarian Veal. It’s very rich, filling dish to warm you up on a cold Autumn night, served with lashings of mashed garlic potato or kumara, roasted veg and wilted greens. Don’t forget toast or a chunk of crusty bread to clean your plate!

I am quite sure the best Food Stylist would have a hard time making this rather homely looking dish look more appealing. The Junior Sorority acknowledge this with an unflattering nick-name .. I am sure the dog would like it for breakfast, but he has to beat me to it 😉 Like many cream dishes, this is much better the next day so leftovers are eagerly devoured on toast with grilled tomatoes, which helps cut through the thick, creamy sauce.

Butternut Pottage

Butternut Pottage

Butternut Pottage

In the middle Ages, this stick-to-your-ribs dish would have been called a “Pottage”, closer to a stew than a soup. Given how thick and rich it is, I choose to stick to that tradition. The Junior Sorority call it baby food .. which doesn’t stop the big babies eating it by the bucketful 🙂

I know I have given you the recipe to feed a dozen people, but given the impressive appetites I live with, that’s the only sensible way for me to make it, especially as the frozen leftovers make a great emergency lunch. I’ll give you the cheat’s version for one in the notes.

The Mollusc Mazurka

Roman Snail

Is it safe to come out yet?

For the first time since I had my operation, I was able to go for an evening walk. It wasn’t much of a walk, given the distance Fuzzbutt and I normally cover in our evening rambles .. more of a shuffle around the block really .. but it felt so good to be standing (almost) straight and stretching my legs. I am not used to being so sedentary, so for the past week or so I have suffered badly from a condition the Junior Sorority laughingly refer to as “bot-rot” .. my butt is almost permanently asleep. Such respect they show their injured Mother.

It is a cool evening, the ground and air moist after the rain that is traditional for Anzac Day. As my Beloved and I strolled along, I noticed that some snails were also out for their evening constitutional, taking advantage of the cool, moist conditions. Of course I view snails as The Enemy .. voracious invaders who eat my garden alive, so those imprudent enough to show themselves paid the ultimate price as I gleefully stomped on all I saw. Although not normally given to displays of violence, I take a sort of grim satisfaction as the little buggers go to their next plane of existence with a gratifying crunch. My Beloved rolls his eyes and makes sure my efforts don’t become too gymnastic.

Pork Stew with Tomatillos (Guisado de Puerco con Tomatillos)

Pork Stew with Tomatillos

Pork Stew with Tomatillos

The first time I made this I accidentally blew the family socks off. One-by-one pale, sweat jeweled faces turned toward me accusingly before running for juice, milk and slices of cucumber. All except my chilli-phile Beloved, who sat grinning like a maniac, wisps of steam flowing gently from his ears. At long last I had made a meal to his taste, rather than ours and he was one happy chappy. Apparently it tingled.

But how?? How had I made such an error when I had followed the recipe so carefully. I only used three chillis, removed all the seeds and membranes .. um .. Habañero is not the same as Jalepeño is it?? No, not by a long shot.

Tomatillo (Physalis philadelphica syn P. ixocarpa)

Tomatillo "Grande Verde"

Tomatillo "Grande Verde"

Low growing annual from the Solanaceae (nightshade) family originally from central America. It grows with an upright habit that becomes increasingly spreading as the smooth 60 -90cm branches are weighed down with developing fruit. The 5cm long, dark green leaves have between two and six 8mm “teeth” along their jagged edges.

Bright yellow blossoms, sometimes with faint greenish blue or purple spots and pale blue or greenish blue anthers, are around 2cm in diameter.