Sourdough pitta bread

Two pitta breads with charred bits, slightly puffed up, on a plate

Now that summer is officially under way and it (sometimes) gets hot, I tend to avoid turning the oven on, as our flat gets very hot and we don’t need any extra heat. It’s time for salads, gazpachos and things that can be eaten cold(ish).

However… sometimes the pull of making something with flour is still strong. And that’s when I reach for these very easy to make pitta breads, which are dry-fried in a pan rather than baked in the oven.

It will still be hot in the kitchen for a bit, but then you’re done and ready to eat your little freshly baked wonders. And it’s so exciting to see them puff up! One of my favourite parts.

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Za’atar bread

Za'atar bread loaf, sliced

We bought a really big pack of Za’atar a couple of weeks ago, and the first thought I had (apart from cooking more cauliflower fritters) was that it would somehow make its way into bread.

First we made some sourdough manakish: a sort of flatbread topped with a paste made of za’atar and olive oil. That was very good!

Then I had an idea: what about making a hybrid between manakish and a ‘classic’ loaf?

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Leek and broccoli risotto

Leek and broccoli risotto

I signed up to a “British vegetable box”, and what that translates into these days is: a lot of leeks, carrots and potatoes.

It’s a fun challenge to come up with new recipes (new to me, I suppose!) to use them in different ways.

So after I made a leek and potato soup (a Devvers classic), I devised a leek, carrot and potato fritatta, and then… a leek and broccoli risotto for Sunday lunch, because Sundays should be for rice dishes!

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Leek, carrot and potato fritatta

Leek, carrot and potato fritatta with soya topping on a cast iron pan

I had some left over boiled potatoes and carrots from a bollit, and a lot of leeks, so I turned them into a comforting fritatta.

I was feeling quite creative so I decided to add a spicy twist to this by concocting a sort of “spicy soya topping”, using dehydrated soya mince, chilli oil and paprika. After baking in the oven, the texture became crispy and super interesting—nothing to do with the boring soggy soya bits you get just after rehydrating.

It provided a good counterpart to the soft, comforting fritatta flavours. Something to experiment with!

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[VERY BELATED POST] Pseudo-isolation, week 17: everything is weird (and quiet)

Note: this post was written almost a year ago, in July 2020! It had been sitting on my drafts for some reason, and it’s a pity because it has some cool stuff we did last year! So out it goes!

Feel free to imagine it is preceded by a whiff of naphtalene or something 😂

This week we went to two (!) restaurants and a pub and it was all weird and quiet. We also ran out of milk but made porridge anyway. And Devvers made Spanish sweets following a Valencian recipe again!

We still can’t walk without the persistent feeling that everyone is going to give us the virus, and many things are still closed, although at least the supermarkets around us are relatively well stocked nowadays.

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