Recipes from food stylist Nicolas Ghirlando: Fish fingers to Friday nights.

  • Don’t be so shellfish

    I found a lobster in the freezer yesterday. Cooked and frozen solid. I’d forgotten about it, languishing there like an extra in Quincy. I gave it a hot bath, and a little…

  • Garlic, chive and thyme aioli

    If you fancy something to dip your chips in, an alternative to mayo in your chicken sandwich or something to fire up your fish, this is a perfect quick sauce to scare the people…

  • Spring a leek

    I’ve been meaning to make leeks with vinaigrette since we got back from Paris at the beginning of March. We were primed for a fancy lunch for my great Aunty…

  • Nuts in April

    The Easter weekend is coming up, and this year my birthday is sandwiched between death and resurrection on the Saturday. I shall not be doing any cooking for the whole weekend,…

  • A spring in our step

    There is a strange kind of calm in the house. Just the gentle hum of the washing machine in the background. I hear a car pass by and the clock ticking on the wall. It’s a…

  • Sea aster time

    It’s STILL the Easter holidays. The children have not stopped talking to me for two solid days. I think they must breathe through their ears. It’s been a…

  • Easter Scotch Creme eggs

    This recipe is not for the faint hearted, or at least not for people who don't like Creme eggs. Use as many creme eggs as you want, I stopped after eight, which is another kind…

  • Mind your onions.

    They’re home for the next few weeks because of the school Easter holidays. I have a glut of onions from a job the other day, so to annoy them, I’ve decided to peel…

  • Happy yeaster

    The dough has risen again after the first thirty minutes. I knocked it back with a gentle flick or two of the wrist and folded it in on itself a few times before shaping into a…

  • Bombay paneer with garlic chilli sauce

    I’m writing this lying on the floor in the middle of a cheese coma. The sudden trauma of morning, getting the children ready for school and repeating ‘brush your…

  • On the lamb

    There is a Roald Dahl short story whereby a wronged wife clonks her husband on the head with a frozen lamb leg and renders him dead. While I am no way advocating such action…

  • The Absolute ‘Pie-agne’

    We got back from Paris on the weekend. Now there’s a city that knows what to do with pastry. Crumbling and flaky lemon tarts, strawberries glazed and nestling in creme…

  • Scotch egg? You’re in luck, now.

    The petrol station. Where food goes to die. This is why people think badly of Scotch eggs, although, thankfully there has been a little positive renaissance recently of these…

  • Go man, go

    This recipe is inspired by the kulfi sticks the children (and I) love on our occasional trips to Tayaabs, but I’m certainly not going to make it at home the proper and…

  • Scone with the wind

    Maya’s off school ill today. And somehow, come 9.30 this morning, she has made what medical science would term a miraculous recovery. I’ve never seen someone less ill.…

  • Hand-raised lamb, potato and spinach pie.

    Since my father’s inexplicable and treacherous switching of allegiance from Newcastle Untied to Reading FC, he now has a cup of tea and a Waitrose balti pie every half time…

  • Aaloo sailor

    Potato has to be one of life’s great comfort foods. And while I rail about the result versus the time and planning taken to bake a jacket potato to golden crunchy skin…

  • Salmon to watch over me

    A small package, wrapped in a brown paper mushroom bag arrived for me from Eugene, Oregon the other week. Inside, thanks to my friend Linda Schindler, was vanilla salt. She said…

  • Punjab dhal dumpling curry

    I always get excited when I stumble across new ingredients. I’ll try anything as long as it’s not a joke or a dare. Or fugu. Or a still beating snake heart. Or a…

  • Having a ball

    Recently, before Christmas and in the throes of trying to establish a new world record for sugar consumption, I bought a box of gulab jamun from the local supermarket. I’ve…

  • Polenta, lobster and squid ink tomatoes

    Tinned fish is one of life’s simple pleasures, and for me tinned sardines have become a gateway drug to other, more eye-watering products. As well as coming in all kinds of…

  • Quiche me quick

    We got back from a long New Year’s weekend on a farm clutching fresh eggs from the cuckoo marans that pecked around the muddy yard. I may have clutched them a little hard as…

  • A right pear

    The pears arrived, hard as meteorites, risking dental appointments for the children. A few days later, after sitting in a bowl, one had turned to a mould-spotted mush and the…

  • This pheasant land

    I stumbled across a pheasant the other day. I say stumbled, more bought one. Sadly I wasn’t a gun with my wellies and cap out on the moors looking wistfully and…

  • Garam Masala

    This spice mix, key to much Indian cooking, is so easy to make.You can tailor it to have more cinnamon, fewer cloves, a pinch of chilli heat and so on, as you wish. It goes in at…

  • A potted fish story

    Kevin, our plumber, has buggered off to France on the proceeds of our unfinished boiler. This has, however, led to the discovery of an unopened tin of ghee beneath the fuse box in…

  • pumpkin-halloween-pumpkin-paratha-spiced-scrambled-eggs-with-green-chillies

    Smashing pumpkin

    The proof of the pudding is in the eating. And while this is not pudding and I have nothing to prove, the only way you're going to understand how delicious this dish is, is by…

  • Simple Pleasures

    Garlic grilled lobster, 24 hour slow-roast pork, smoked salmon scrambled eggs, roast chicken. The list of snacks the children are asking me for each evening they get back from…

  • Ooh, The Cheek Of It.

    The slow change from vivid green to red, yellow, orange. And then how quickly the trees become bare and the glorious colours give way to brown and grey sludgy streets. In the…

  • Philly Cheesesteaks. One Wiz Wit’

    In West Philadelphia, born and raised, on the playground where I spent most of my days. Chilling out, maxing, relaxing all cool, and all shooting some b-ball outside of the…

  • Lamb Shanks with Spaghetti Squash

    Last night the oven caught fire. I’d only popped out for a while and left Bee a lasagne to heat for supper. We’ve had it for about 13 years, and it has seen two…

  • Taco Chance on Me

    We’ve recently started taco evenings with the children and they’ve been a roaring success. I suppose it’s the spread of food in front of them and the feeling of…

  • Lamb and Rosemary Stuffed Squash

    The evening light fades so quickly in September. It feels like only last week that the sun was setting late after nine o’clock and our nights were short with dawn flooding…

  • Rolled Lamb with Pistachio and Apricot

    I prefer Autumn lamb, more flavoursome than spring and in my mind, less mean-spirited to eat. It’s had a chance to gambol about and is saved from the misery of the long dark…

  • Orzo I Thought

    And the nights are drawing in. Summer’s almost gone, before we know it we shall be wearing makeup and knocking on neighbours doors demanding sweets. Even if you don’t…

  • Apple and Blackberry Crumble

    Yesterday was a low-calorie day for me as I endeavour to return to the svelte, Adonis-like figure I had when young. Perhaps aiming for the slim figure I had when at art college…

  • Sri Lankan Beetroot and Coconut Curry

    First of all, if you don’t like beetroot, please leave the room because a: I don’t trust you b: you won’t like this curry. It tastes of beetroot. For those of…

  • Fungi To Be Around

    Just as I was packing away my shorts, chucking out the sun cream and darkly muttering about the “nights drawing in”, the bloody sun finally comes out. I was conceding…

  • Gooseberry with Mackerel, Chilli and Galangal

    It’s been such a long time since I’ve eaten gooseberries. Perhaps since childhood, picked from the bushes in friends’ gardens. Maybe once in jam at…

  • Everything’s Rosy

    I have a vague, dusty memory somewhere of my mum making coconut macaroons. Specifically, the rice paper underneath and the wonder that you could actually eat it. They…

  • Ail Be Back

    I seem to be roasting rather a lot at the moment. Maybe it’s down to this peculiar summer we’re having or perhaps in a counter-intuitive way because I’m busy. As…

  • Root One

    I suffer from low curry levels if I go more than four days without one. This clearly quite serious situation can result in either a delivery, a trip to Ganapati in Peckham or  a…

  • There May Be Truffle Ahead

    My friend Roberto, who runs http://www.trufflestories.co.uk brought me back a few black truffles from L’Isola d’Asti the other day while we painfully wait for the…

  • Scallops with Celeriac Remoulade

    Celeriac makes a great doorstop. If you have some time and patience on your hands (which you must be prepared to shred on the mandoline), a remoulade is another, and tastier way,…

  • Roast Squash with Juniper, Thyme, Garlic and Paprika

    Sometimes it’s the little things. The touches here and there that make a meal special. And they don’t have to be tricky or crazy, sometimes simple is best. I love the…

  • Salmon and Pearl Barley with Pesto and Wild Garlic Pods

    For those of you who regularly read my recipes (hello Mum!), you’ll know I love using wild garlic. Having used all that I had access to this year, all that remained were the…

  • Chive Talkin’

    It’s officially the first day of summer and true to form here in England, the rain is torrential. Nonetheless, we carry on regardless, cheerfully wearing shorts, smiling and…

  • Matcha the Day

    I don’t think I’ve had a choc-ice since primary school. I’d forgotten the joy of the thin chocolate cracking as you chill your teeth on the ice cream. I wanted…

  • Roast Vegetables

    Throwing a load of vegetables in a tin with some herbs, oil, salt and pepper is about as easy as cooking gets. Easier than boiling an egg, even. It’s a great accompaniment…

  • pork-chops

    Pork Chops with Mustard and Cream

    We don’t often eat pork chops in my house. We’ve had the fear put into us by my mother-in-law that we will have a terrible night’s sleep if we eat pork in the…

  • Snack of the week

    If you are hungry and need a quick pick me up, this snack has won my coveted ‘snack of the week’ award. It’s an amazing, classic combination and if you have…

  • Baked eggcellence

    It has been a fairly uneventful week in the kitchen, which means it’s been quite tidy. The children made their own tomato, sweet potato and carrot soup which they promptly…

  • Fruit smoothie

    About an hour after I’ve had my jasmine tea in the morning,  I’m ready for breakfast, which almost every morning is a Nutribullet smoothie. Usually I will start with…

  • Love and hake

    Still off the carbs and sugar, mealtimes are becoming much more interesting. While I have craved the odd sandwich or snack, and with weekends being particularly tricky with the…

  • Herb Salt, or Amkräuter salz

    Not much happened in Suffolk last week. I’m not sure it ever does. That’s what made our stay in the cottage so rejuvinating. Lighting fires, reading books, walks on…

  • Roast chicken with mashed potato, creamy leeks, fennel seed and peas

    I think it far better to buy a whole good chicken and roast it all than buy expensive packaged bits. At the very least you can make a really good chicken stock, let alone all the…

  • Vietnamese deep-fried summer rolls

    Our long-lost family restaurant, The Mekong in Pimlico (disclaimer: I snorted when I first went and now claim it as my own) closed perhaps a year ago with what seemed like no…

  • Breakfast smoothie

    I use a nutribullet for my smoothies. The great thing here being that your bananas may be on their way out, your spinach may not be at its freshest, but there is no need to waste…

  •   Five minute fish curry

    Fry the curry spices in the coconut oil, add the fish chunks. Cook for a few minutes then add the remaining ingredients and a little coriander. You could use coconut milk rather…

  • Quick barbecue sauce recipe

  • Quick children’s meals and how to get them to eat vegetables

    How times have changed. Wasn’t it only yesterday I was able to stay up past 10 in the evening and function the next day? My friends and I would get up to all sorts of…

  • Sugar and dairy-free gelato heaven

    I don’t remember anyone ever having said a bad word about Italian ice-cream. Its texture is creamy and rich, soft and smooth on the tongue. The flavours sing purely, as if…

  • Sweet mango, lime and chilli

    It’s August here in London, the height of summer. Looking out of the window, the unrelenting monsoon makes me wonder if it will ever get light. Instead of turning to slow…

  • Cauliflower, turmeric and garlic mash

    I love cauliflower raw in salads, pickled, picalillied, turned into ‘cous cous’ or ‘rice’ or comforting cauliflower cheese. It also makes a great mash. You…

  • Low-carb suppers: Seared tuna with warm bean salad

    If you were to find me in a restaurant in the early 2000s, chances are I would be eating seared tuna on a ‘bed’ of le Puy lentils. I couldn’t get enough of it. It seemed to…

  • Miso soup with prawn, scallop and samphire

    This is one of the simplest and quickest meals you will ever make. And one of the most delicious. To make it work, though, you must get absolutely fresh tiger prawns and plump,…

  • Breakfast ice lollies

    As a supposed grown-up, I feel I can eat whatever I want, whenever. Cold pizza for breakfast and such. While I try and promote a healthy diet to the children, that…

  • Cured mullet with pickled radish

    At the back of my fridge you’ll find a jar or two of pickled herring from Ikea. I always stock up when I go, it’s the highlight of the trip. I get excited about any food that…

  • Sugar free yoghurt, cardamom and elderflower bundt cake.

    I bore my wife every year with constant updates on the elder state, and my excitement and her relief peaks when the buds start to open into flowers. Pick them first thing on a…

  • Morning Smoothie

    I tend to start every morning with a Nutribullet smoothie. I was never a great breakfast eater, but this has proven an easy way for me to get the day off to a good start. Some…

  • North African chickpea and tomato stew

    I say North African, but this really is a mix of store cupboard items that could be Asian, Indian, Turkish, Moroccan and Mediterranean. Chickpeas were a staple growing up and my…

  • Nettle and wild garlic pesto with prawns and sweet potato

    Nettles grow like mad this time of year. Now, after many childhood tears, it’s time for revenge. They have a grassy, earthy flavor that goes well in risotto or soup and if you…

  • Kasha with spiced roast vegetables

    This vibrant dish can be served warm or cold. Kasha, or roast buckwheat is so good for you and has a nutty taste and texture that complements the sweet roast vegetables. What I…

  • Hawthorn tea

    It’s hawthorn blossom season in London at the moment and while the trees are in bloom it’s a great time to make fresh tea or dry the flowers for future use. The tea has…

  • Spicy filo vegetable parcels

    Bourek, samosa, pasty or empanada? They’re all good ways to eat a messy filling with your hands. I first had bourek in a cous cous restaurant in Paris and loved the delicate…

  • Quick carb-free crab ‘courgetti’

    This is a take on one of my favourite pasta dishes. It’s a great way to cut out carbohydrates if you’re on a health kick, and it really stands out as a dish in its own…

  • Jasmine-cured mackerel fishcakes

    Fishcakes are a great way of either using up fish trimmings or making fish a bit more accesible for the children. I’m a big fan of Thai fishcakes. Full of zingy flavours,…

  • Infused oils: getting more flavour into your meals

    Here’s a quick and easy way to add a little more flavour to your cooking. Depending on what you’re making, using infused oils to cook with can make the difference between a…

  • Fiery homemade chilli sauce that’s full of flavour

    Chilli sauce has been a source of constant disappointment in my life. It’s either not as hot as it says it should be, or it’s hot but without much flavour. I remember trying a…

  • Dhal Vadai: spiced Indian lentil balls

    I have talked about my love of lentils in an earlier post. Like the Swedish are never too far away from a herring, dhal is never too far from my mind. Lentils are comfort food…

  • Delicious beef kofte skewers with yogurt, cumin and mint dip

    A good kebab is a great thing. It’s almost the ultimate in balanced meals with the meat, salad, vegetables and carbohydrates. It can either soak up a night’s excesses or…

  • Meatballs with spiced tomato sauce and courgette ‘spaghetti’

    I love meatballs more than almost anything in the world. It’s hard to beat a bowl of them served with spaghetti, but for this version I thought I’d make a healthier…

  • The beautiful lentil

    My favourite part of an Indian meal is most often the dhal. Dipping homemade naan into the silky, slightly spiced comforting refuge of the tarka-ed lentils is to me a little like…

  • Curried spelt with salmon

    Apart from the smell of onions and garlic cooking in a little butter and oil, I don’t think anything beats the aromatic and almost mysterious smell that comes from toasting a…

  • Rabbit terrine with asparagus, pancetta and peas

    This dish is so pretty, but essentially my rabbit terrine is a big slab of meat, freshened by the addition of peas and asparagus. Served with a pickled salad and a few truffle…

  • Beautiful whole sea urchin

    Sea urchin spaghetti with lemon and olive oil

    One of the greatest meals I’ve ever had was a sea urchin pasta, eaten overlooking a beach in Paxos. We were at a cookery demonstration by Spiros, owner of Bar Taxidi in Loggos…

  • Roast lamb with garlic, baby aubergines and anya potatoes

    Lamb – whether spiced and charred in the tandoor, coated with a herb crust and roasted, or simply sliced thinly and served in a sandwich with mustard, parsley and cucumber…

  • Fig and goat’s cheese tart with onions, tomatoes and honey

    When I was at my parents’ last weekend for my dad’s birthday, I wanted to contribute something to the lunch, and brought in the figs I happened to have left over from the day…

  • Welcome to The Modern Husband

    Welcome to The Modern Husband, where I post a wide range of recipes and writing about food I love to make – from quick family suppers to Michelin-style cooking for special…

    Spring a leek

        I’ve been meaning to make leeks with vinaigrette since we got back from Paris at the beginning of March. We were primed for a fancy lunch…

    Nuts in April

      The Easter weekend is coming up, and this year my birthday is sandwiched between death and resurrection on the Saturday. I shall not be doing…

    Easter Scotch Creme eggs

    This recipe is not for the faint hearted, or at least not for people who don’t like Creme eggs.
    Use as many creme eggs as you want, I stopped after eight, which is another kind of chocolate I probably only have once a year.

    Happy yeaster

      The dough has risen again after the first thirty minutes. I knocked it back with a gentle flick or two of the wrist and folded…

    On the lamb

    There is a Roald Dahl short story whereby a wronged wife clonks her husband on the head with a frozen lamb leg and renders him dead.…

    Go man, go

    This recipe is inspired by the kulfi sticks the children (and I) love on our occasional trips to Tayaabs, but I’m certainly not going to make it…

    Scone with the wind

    Maya’s off school ill today. And somehow, come 9.30 this morning, she has made what medical science would term a miraculous recovery. I’ve never seen someone…

    Aaloo sailor

      Potato has to be one of life’s great comfort foods. And while I rail about the result versus the time and planning taken to bake a…

    Having a ball

    Recently, before Christmas and in the throes of trying to establish a new world record for sugar consumption, I bought a box of gulab jamun from…

    A right pear

    The pears arrived, hard as meteorites, risking dental appointments for the children. A few days later, after sitting in a bowl, one had turned to a…

    Garam Masala

    This spice mix, key to much Indian cooking, is so easy to make.You can tailor it to have more cinnamon, fewer cloves, a pinch of chilli heat…

    pumpkin-halloween-pumpkin-paratha-spiced-scrambled-eggs-with-green-chillies

    Smashing pumpkin

    The proof of the pudding is in the eating. And while this is not pudding and I have nothing to prove, the only way you’re going to understand how delicious this dish is, is by making and eating it. I urge you to do this as soon as you can.

    Simple Pleasures

    Garlic grilled lobster, 24 hour slow-roast pork, smoked salmon scrambled eggs, roast chicken. The list of snacks the children are asking me for each evening they…

    Taco Chance on Me

    We’ve recently started taco evenings with the children and they’ve been a roaring success. I suppose it’s the spread of food in front of them and…

    Orzo I Thought

    And the nights are drawing in. Summer’s almost gone, before we know it we shall be wearing makeup and knocking on neighbours doors demanding sweets. Even…

    Everything’s Rosy

    I have a vague, dusty memory somewhere of my mum making coconut macaroons. Specifically, the rice paper underneath and the wonder that you could actually eat…

    Ail Be Back

    I seem to be roasting rather a lot at the moment. Maybe it’s down to this peculiar summer we’re having or perhaps in a counter-intuitive way…

    Root One

    I suffer from low curry levels if I go more than four days without one. This clearly quite serious situation can result in either a delivery,…

    Chive Talkin’

    It’s officially the first day of summer and true to form here in England, the rain is torrential. Nonetheless, we carry on regardless, cheerfully wearing shorts,…

    Matcha the Day

    I don’t think I’ve had a choc-ice since primary school. I’d forgotten the joy of the thin chocolate cracking as you chill your teeth on the…