Bocadillo de longaniza y tortilla francesa (sausage and omelette sandwich)

I made this practice mini loaf the other day as an experiment born out of an experiment: I had made a coca with a focaccia dough made with my beer starter (and a couple of cans of Camden Hells lager instead of water), and I had set some dough aside to practice shaping it into a baguette, as I don’t have lots of experience with that type of shaping.

Loaf with focaccia dough
Loaf with focaccia dough

Then I was gathering ingredients to make an omelette, when I noticed there were two sausages in the fridge, and that gave me an even better idea:

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Celeriac, potato, onion and courgette soup

Celeriac soup with caramelised onion, roasted pine nuts, browned courgette

The first thing I think of when autumn arrives is mushrooms. Then pumpkins. And then, celeriac.

But for some reason, they were not stocking it anywhere near us. I kept peeking at the vegetables section each time I visited the shops, and all I saw were sad swedes (the roots, not the people) and tiny squash and potato cubes. No! That will not do!

So I finally braved the rain and wind, walked to a supermarket further away, and found celeriac there. At last!

Celeriac soup with onion, courgette and pine nuts
Celeriac soup with onion, courgette and pine nuts

This appetite of mine for celeriac soup is a bit of a recent thing though. I blame The Celeriac Soup that I had at Brunswick House once.

THE Celeriac soup
THE Celeriac soup at Brunswick House

Have it once, try to mimic it forever. Such is my fate…

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Noble Rot Soho

Noble Rot soho - looking outside through the window

I have a confession to make: I am late to most culinary trends and “best kept secrets”.

I had never been to the Gay Hussar, the restaurant that used to be in these premises. I actually barely knew anything about it, its fame (used to be frequented by politicians on their old-school long lunches) or the type of cuisine it cooked (Hungarian), until it was threatened with closure.

And then it was finally closed and boarded up, and I never had the chance to visit, and then it spent quite a bit of time shut, and I would cycle past it and never give it a second thought (there’s only so much you can be saddened with before everything drags you down).

Then a couple of weeks ago Devvers said we should visit the restaurant as it had just opened.

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Bollit / hervido (“boiled”)

Picture of a portion of bollit / hervido in a soup dish, containing half a red onion, a carrot and one potato with a dash of butter

In the quest for the most extravagant and spectacularly looking dishes, we often overlook the basics. What a shame!

So here’s one of them: bollit (in Valencian) or hervido (in Spanish). Which literally means… boiled!

This dish is extremely simple, consisting of boiling vegetables in salted water, and then having them with a bit of fat of your choosing. I know—it sounds “unappetising”, and it looks “ugly”, but it can be oh so comforting, especially when the weather is cold or if you’re feeling not so great and all you need is some simple food that doesn’t require extremely sophisticated skills to prepare.

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