It’s about time: 10 meals that take 10 minutes, and 10 that take 10 hours – The Guardian

Posted By on May 15, 2020

What you cook in lockdown can depend heavily on time. Some people suddenly have to feed multiple hungry mouths several times a day. Others have hours to while away and need a task absorbing enough to take their minds off the people and places they miss. Whichever camp you fall into, there are recipes here for you.

Pea soupBettina Campolucci Bordi, a plant-based cookery writer, heats through 600g frozen peas with a little olive oil and a can of coconut milk, before blitzing until smooth. Divide between 2-3 bowls and serve with a dollop of yoghurt and fresh herbs.

Pitta pan toastieOllie Templeton, of Carousel, London. fills a pitta (any bread would work) with cheese, salad leaves and sriracha, then toasts it in a heavy-based pan, with another pan on top to flatten it.

Pasta with courgetteFelicity Cloakes courgette carbonara is a thing of beauty. If you like the combo, another option is this pasta nerano by Robin Gill, of The Dairy, London. Cook 400g spaghetti to al dente about eight minutes. Meanwhile, fry four medium courgettes sliced in rounds, in batches and in olive oil, until lightly browned. Saut three sliced garlic cloves, add in the cooked pasta with a ladleful of the pasta water, then the courgettes and mix vigorously. Add a handful of grated provolone cheese and fresh basil, and mix until fully melted.

Cornershop noodlesCarl Clarke, chef-founder of Chick n sours, London, says to boil a full kettle, and make an omelette with two seasoned eggs and some finely sliced spring onion, then slice into strips. Slice and fry on a high heat for a few minutes half an onion, a pepper (any colour) and a handful of button mushrooms. If you like, throw in some cubed tinned meat (Spam, ham, corned beef etc). Add 4cm sliced fresh ginger and four cloves of garlic, along with a handful of green leaves. Pour over 170ml boiling water and add half a packet of chicken-flavoured instant noodles, along with the packet seasoning, and cook until most of the water is absorbed. Add the omelette. In another bowl, mix together 1 tbsp curry powder, 3 tbsp soy sauce, 3 tbsp fish sauce, 1 tbsp rice wine or dry sherry, 1 tbsp sugar, 1 tbsp sesame oil and 2 tbsp cold water, and at the last moment, add to the noodles and stir. Garnish with sliced spring onion to serve.

Chicken noodle soupFood writer Molly Wizenberg, meanwhile, has this even simpler chicken noodle hack (serves two), using tinned soup, vermicelli, egg and parmesan.

Buckwheat noodle saladAs a post-home-schooling quick-fix for two, Nicholas Balfe of Salon, in Brixton, south London, says boil a full kettle then pour 1.5 litres into a saucepan on a high heat. Soft boil two eggs (six minutes set a timer). Meanwhile, dress very thinly sliced carrot (use a peeler) with a pinch of salt and 50ml each of sesame oil and rice wine vinegar, some sesame seeds and some nori seaweed, cut up finely. In another bowl, season cucumber half-moons with 50ml soy sauce and a teaspoon of sugar. When cooked, plunge the eggs into cold water, then peel. In the reserved hot water, cook 250g buckwheat (soba) noodles according to the packet instructions (two to three minutes), then drain and rinse briefly. Divide the noodles between two bowls and place clusters of carrots, cucumber and protein (it could be shredded roast chicken, smoked fish, cubed silken tofu or red beans, seasoned with salt, lime zest and juice). Top each bowl with a halved egg, fresh herbs and toasted nuts, and serve with kimchi, pickles, and/or hot sauce on the side.

Spicy vegan bao bunsThese pineapple-glazed treats from chef Denai Moore (@dees_table) are reason enough to keep a packet of ready-made bao buns in the freezer In a saucepan, mix 120ml pineapple juice, half a de-seeded scotch bonnet chilli (or a milder one if you prefer), two tablespoons each of coconut sugar and soy sauce, and two thinly sliced garlic cloves. Bring to the boil, then reduce for six to eight minutes until sticky and glossy. Meanwhile, slice 10 asparagus spears and 10 button mushrooms and fry in olive oil until caramelised and brown (four minutes) and season with a pinch of sea salt. Add the pineapple glaze, then remove from the heat, stirring to coat evenly. Microwave four frozen buns according to packet instructions, then fill with thinly sliced cucumber topped with the mushroom and the asparagus on top. Garnish with fresh herbs to serve.

Eggs kagianaAsimakis Chaniotis, the Michelin-starred executive chef of Pied Terre, London, says: grate three large tomatoes into a pan, over a medium heat. Stirring continuously, add in seven whisked eggs to form a thick paste. Season to taste with salt, pepper and oregano and pour into an overproof dish. Top with 200g crumbled feta and bake at 220C, until the cheese begins to caramelise. Serves 2-3.

Chickpeas with feta and red onionMix a drained tin of chickpeas in a large bowl with a sliced red onion, 100g of feta cheese, cubed, a handful of cherry tomatoes, some chopped black olives and fresh basil. Drizzle with olive oil and a teaspoon of sherry vinegar, and season to taste. Tom Kitchin serves this with roast hake portions, which you can easily do in the same 10 minutes (season then pan fry, skin side down, for a couple of minutes then place in a 180C oven for four minutes more).

Cheats chicken shawarmaAfter a long day, chefs Itamar Srulovich and Sarit Packer, of Honey and Co, London, often turn to this dish. Dice an onion and fry in a hot oily pan, add as much garlic and chilli as you want, dice a breast of chicken and toss it in, mixing until almost cooked. Then, they say, hit the spice rack: choose from baharat, Lebanese seven spice, ras el hanout, curry powder or a mix of cumin, paprika and a pinch of cinnamon with lots of black pepper. Serve with sliced tomato, flat breads and yoghurt.

GumboThe night I spent meticulously following Sara Roahens recipe (live-chatting colour swatches with her to check my roux was asdone as it should be) is etched in my brain as the foundational culinary experience. I measured, dredged, sweated. There were times when I hallucinated No wonder Matthew McConaughey pictures his father up in heaven in his pants, Miller Lite in hand, and a big pot of this southern wonder on the go. Read Roahens Gumbo Tales to get a taste

ChaminIsraeli chef Tomer Amedi, of Palomar in London, singles this dish out as his taste of home. It is slow-cooked on Friday night for the Sabbath. It sits [on a hot plate] all night long, thick and heavy, and by Saturday morning you are losing your mind because it smells so good, but you cant have any until its time, he says. Yotam Ottolenghis oxtail with everything stew takes its cue as much from chamin (or cholent, as the Ashkenazi Jews call it) as from a good old French cassoulet, and requires an oven simmer of 12 hours.

Roast porkThe Michelin-starred Andrew Wongs char siu involves a six-hour marinade and lengthy oven roast followed by a six-hour steep in sugar syrup. For his pork shoulder, meanwhile, Ottolenghi makes a marinade with Szechuan pepper with citrus and pomegranate molasses and leaves the joint in the oven all night. Jane Baxter, by contrast, uses fewer aromatics, instead drying the meat overnight to ensure perfect crackling.

Chocolate sourdoughIf you have spent the past six weeks of lockdown nursing a sourdough mother into bubbling life, take things up a notch and bake a chocolate-studded loaf. Sliced hot and slathered in mascarpone, it is enough to make anyone weep. There are several recipes online Jennine Walkers is simple; Shiao-Ping on The Fresh Loaf gives more complete instructions.

Gardenscape focacciaThe other viral iso-baking trend. Here, its not just the lengthy proving that racks up the hours, but the level of detail that goes into decorating them. You want a good basic recipe (Felicity Cloake or Rachel Roddy, say), a wealth of pretty veg and a good eye.

Pie artAs Lokokitchens Lauren Ko put it recently:Dont try this at home, kids. Or do because it will occupy you for approximately 469632154239 hours. Ko has mastered the art of the geometric pie, an edible cross between string art and high-stakes tiling. Other decorative pie accounts to ogle at include Thida Bevington, Julie Jones and Jo Harrington. To start, get a hold of some rhubarb and a protractor, and make Bevingtons pink herringbone number.

A Bake Off showstopperBaking will take as many hours as you can put in, really, as Kim-Joys two-tiered lavender lemon curd fox cake proves. The Spanische windtorte was one of 2015s technical challenges: it will see you spooning oversized meringues, shaping fondant violets replete with stamens and piping Swiss meringue borders on it. So much sugar to get lost in.

The 20-hour applesIn his 1999 reference tome, Desserts, the pastry chef and chocolatier, Pierre Herm, gives a recipe for the Melody cake which is almost 10 pages long. One of the cakes seven layers is comprised of wafer-thin apple slices slow-cooked in butter and sugar for 10 hours, then rested in the fridge for 10 more.

The Cronut Even Edd Kimbers fauxnut is an undertaking. I think if youre going to give this deep-fried, ganache-filled, laminated butter dough with champagne glaze a go, you really ought to try Dominique Ansels original recipe.

MufulettaThis only takes 10 minutes to prepare but its the overnight press in the fridge that makes it sing. You gouge out a boule of bread, then fill it up with layers of deli meat, cheese, salad and pickles. Put the lid, as it were, back on, wrap tight in clingfilm and foil, then weigh down with something mighty heavy. Just the kind of celebratory door-stopper you will need once were allowed to spend the day picnicking in the sun.

Cure some egg yolks (they make superbly savoury rice toppings) and make candied fruit. You can glac wedges of citron, slices of orange, halved and stoned stone fruit, stalk-on cherries, whole clementines or even a pineapple with its crown intact. To be sure, it is the very definition of non-essential cooking. But what with the wildly protracted escapist prep time, the glistening jewel-like hues and the luxe touch even the smallest sliver gives whatever you pop it on, making a batch of fruits confits truly is a kind of holiday. Arrange in old-school muffin cases under cellophane wrappers with little gold ties, and pretend its August in Aix-en-Provence.

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It's about time: 10 meals that take 10 minutes, and 10 that take 10 hours - The Guardian

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