The one about cooking like a fiend

22 Jun

Last weekend was a cooking frenzy. I decided it was time to embrace domesticity, and L1 was in the mood, too, so we ferociously attacked the fridge, store cupboard and, on occasion, the garage (don’t worry, I hadn’t come over all Heston Blumenthal, experimenting with WD-40 as ingredient, we have a spare fridge in there) to create something a bit different for Father’s Day lunch and for the kids to take to school.

With L2’s explicit blessing – he would prefer to be an unadventurous eater – we tend to get into a bit of a packed lunch rut (Wrap. Cheese. Olives) but while he embraces that, L1 becomes restless. She has a much more tolerant palate (even eating a slice of my now-legendary sprout cake, while all around her were throwing up) and, fair enough, demands packed lunch variety.

So, we tackled recipes from the supremely brilliant Easy Fish recipe book ( This publication lives up to its name on two fronts; I am wondering if you can guess what they are. We made tuna pasta salad for packed lunches, and smoked mackerel and horseradish wraps for Father’s Day lunch. Both were easy and, as the dish titles suggest, contained fish (there, I’ve gone and given away the answers to my quiz earlier in the chapter).

Particular things I had never thought about where combining pesto with olive oil for the pasta salad, to coat the penne and keep it easily edible, soft and stored, for a few days. What a great mix of flavours that is. And smoked mackerel and horseradish, mixing cream cheese with the horseradish kept that root’s biting flavour under control meaning that it brought only good things to the party.

Unfortunately as the cooking creation urge has waned, I appreciate I have set high lunch standards, perhaps unadvisedly, since it may prove difficult consistently to maintain them. Let’s see, though – Easy Fish…


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