27 Oct FAKEAWAY THE FINGER LICKIN’ WAY
Well, here we go… I have now been with Bums on Seats for just over a year and have so far managed to hide behind some incredible blogs that the team have produced (I know right, me … hiding?!) even Amber got one out before me. Safe to say I have been caught like a deer in headlights and PROMISED Amber I would get my creative juices flowing to get a blog published.
The main reason for not producing content so far is twofold, 1) the guys in the team have been pinging over some amazing content week in week out that I just didn’t need to and 2) trying to nail down a topic to talk about was driving me wild. I have decided to let you into a week of delicious dinners cooked by me with my takeaway classics in mind, the common craze that is known as FAKEAWAYS. Creating dishes and cooking always gives me a sense of escapism, I’m so concentrated on the ingredients and the method that I completely lose my thoughts whilst singing away to Celine Dion’s greatest hits, a beautiful rest bite for those intense days in our wonderfully demanding industry.
I’ve been trying to stick to quite a strict diet of late but SOD IT, comfort food is calling and so is my well overdue blog. I’m sure if you give them a try you will discover some delicious recipes that you can make for yourself or the whole house – so enjoy, get your online shopping tab open and start adding ingredients to your basket ready to create your own week of fakeaway goodness. PS; all dishes are open to interpretation, go wild!
Admittedly, trying to recreate something as iconic as a McMuffin would be madness but let me tell you now if you get yourself a burger press and an egg ring you’re on to a winner. Plus, if you have OCD like me, they’re a dream to ensure you create patties and eggs the same size as the muffin … A visualgasm (new word alert).
Ingredients you will need; 1 English muffin, 2 organic eggs, beef mince (5% fat works best), cheese slice.
Method; Burger press your mince to make thin patties, fry until golden brown on each side, add cheese slice until slightly melted, put aside to rest whilst you ‘crack’ on with the eggs. I always do double eggs, pop your egg ring into a hot pan, crack eggs inside add a lid to steam. Toast muffins slightly then build your muffin.
Based on EATs Chicken Laksa Soup
One of my favourite quick lunch time bites was a Chicken Laksa from EAT, glorious in taste and luscious in texture, it takes me back to working in the City, I would have a laksa EVERYDAY (no joke) sat at City Point with not a care in the world, a pot of warmth in the colder months. Here is my take on the classic laksa (I love prawns with it but chicken or just vegetables work just as well).
Ingredients you will need; 50g fresh medium rice noodles, Laksa Paste (ingredients below), 400ml coconut milk, vegetable stock cube, 150g cooked large prawns, asparagus, beansprouts, coriander.
How to make the paste; add 2 peeled garlic cloves, 5cm ginger, 1 fresh red chilli, 1tsp turmeric, 3 spring onions, 1tsp peanut butter, 1 lime, ½ bunch coriander stalks (leave leaves for garnish), 1tbsp sesame oil, 1tbsp soy sauce and 1tbsp fish sauce into a food processor, blitz until smooth paste (handheld works fine too).
Method; Add stock cube to 800ml boiling water, mix through paste, trim asparagus and add to broth with a handful of beansprouts, pour in coconut milk until it boils then simmer, add prawns to laksa alongside your fresh noodles. Add more seasoning as required to suit your taste, serve in a bowl with lime and dash coriander (if you like it) over the top.
This little nugget is SO easy to make, mainly because YO! sell the katsu sauce in packets, I got mine from Tesco. If you fancied going the whole hog, Wagamama released ‘the making of’ their Katsu over lockdown, the step by step video tutorial is fab and honestly, it tastes exactly like being sat on one of those benches on a busy Saturday afternoon shopping break. This dish packs a punch and gives you all the takeaway feels.
Ingredients you will need; 120g rice, chicken breast, 50g plain flour, 2 eggs, 100g Panko breadcrumbs, 75ml vegetable oil, YO! Katsu packet sauce, mixed salad leaves.
Method; Start by making rice as you normally would (packet is fine), pop the chicken breast between two sheets of cling film and seal, beat with a rolling pin until lovely and thin. Creating an assembly line with a bowl of beaten eggs and a bowl for your breadcrumbs, add chicken to the egg mix then into the breadcrumbs to create a lovely escalope. Fry in a hot pan with the oil until golden brown on both sides. Heat sauce through in a pan, add cooked rice to a bowl, slice chicken into strips and add on to the rice, top with the sauce and serve with your salad leaves.
Many of you may know, my first client when I joined Bums on Seats was Carluccio’s and still is to this day. One dish I am always drawn to in ANY Italian restaurant is anything with Funghi (mushrooms) in, I just love it mixed through delicious pasta and a creamy sauce; so hearty and delicious. One dish that stays in my mind is from the man himself Antonio Carluccio. Pappardelle ai Funghi is a must try dish, for my take on it I have taken inspiration from Zizzi, they used to have a creamy mushroom, spinach and pea dish which was heavenly. They only change really is the pasta and the addition of a creamy white wine sauce OH and spinach. OK maybe I’ve changed the entire dish, but the foundation comes from the ‘mushroom man’.
Ingredients you will need; Casarecce pasta, 330g wild mushrooms (I used shitake and chestnut), 2tbsp olive oil, 1 onion, 1 garlic clove, 75ml white wine, 100ml crème fraiche, fresh parsley, spinach, 1 chilli, parmesan (as much as you like on top), season as desired.
Method; Bring a pan of seasoned water to the boil, add pasta, bring back to boil then simmer. Add oil to hot pan then add garlic, chilli and onions to soften, season accordingly with black pepper. Add wine and reduce liquid by half, add all your mushrooms for 3-4 minutes before adding the crème fraiche, simmer until lovely and creamy. Mix through spinach and parsley until the spinach has wilted, add some parmesan to thicken. By this point the pasta will be perfect, stir through a few ladles into the sauce then serve.
It would be sacrilege to not include a pizza surely? With that said, making dough is not my forte so I actually purchased a Pizza Pilgrim Kit for this one, I’ve been meaning to give this a go for a while so what better way than for my blog. 2 pizzas for £15 is a steal and with all the ingredients one would need to make it from scratch its more cost effective too. Now, I have a genuine fear of meat on a pizza, so I ALWAYS go for a vegetarian/vegan option, here I chose the classic Margs but slightly pimped with my favourite veggies.
Ingredients you will need; 1 Pizza Pilgrim at home kit you can order yours here. Additional meat/veggies as required.
Method; follow instructions in your box.
I’m hoping this blog is the start of a new string to my bow and I hope you’ve enjoyed reading as much I enjoyed writing/cooking, please do send us over your attempts or other dishes inspired by your restaurant go-to’s – I’d love to hear about them and see them.
Until next time, be safe and be kind.
Jamie is an Associate Consultant for Bums on Seats and is our Group Sales, Third Party and Casual Dining Expert.
Jamie has a wide breadth of knowledge in the hospitality sector having worked across restaurants, pubs, bars and clubs, holding senior positions across the different sectors and providing substantial sales growth.