Orecchiette with Pistachios, Hazelnuts, Parmesan and Mint

Sometimes I yearn for a pesto sauce that packs a bit more of a punch that the regular basil and pine nut version especially when the quality of shop bought basil can be patchy – who else has splashed out on a packet recently only to find that the leaves are all pretty much too…

An Andalusian Lemon-scented White Bean Dip

These sunny high summer days are all the motivation we need push open the French windows and think about creating lighter and vibrant sharing plates. This vibrant vegan dip is inspired by a gorgeous little whitewashed bar high up in the Andalucían mountains where I was once served a warm tapa of plump white beans,…

Greek Island Tzatziki with Dill and Mint

Originating from the Ottoman Empire, this is my version of the popular Greek dish, tzatziki (known as cacık in Turkey). It’s simply a bowl of authentic Greek yoghurt getting it on with little cubes of crunchy cucumber, lots of finely chopped garlic, briny sea salt, a generous glug of grassy Kalamata olive oil, an audacious…

Greek Gigantes with Tomatoes, Wild Oregano, Dill and Mint

I’ve just read this passage in Katherine Wilson’s wonderful book, ‘Only in Naples, Lessons in Food and Famiglia’: “In Neapolitan culture, foods that could potentially damage children’s health include crackers, ketchup, hot dogs, cold milk, anything in a can, anything that has ever been frozen and anything that has ever been in a microwave. Oh,…

Turkish Yoghurt with Mint, Pul Biber and Lemon Zest

Yoghurt is one of the most important components of the modern Turkish diet and, certainly in my experience, there is rarely a table where it isn’t featured in some form or other; as part of a main dish, or as a dip mixed with a copious amount of chopped herbs, in a dessert or even…

Greek Broccoli Salad with Sun-dried Tomatoes and Toasted Almonds

Now we have so much more of time on our hands, we can be more mindful of our friends, family and neighbours which is lovely but cooking continues to be my solace and I’m taking my time. I’m reminding myself of happier times – when we could travel – by designing simple menus that remind…

Livorno Balsamic-glazed Red Onion, Ricotta Salata and Olive Tart

Livorno, Tuscany’s quintessential port town on the southernmost edge of the Ligurian Sea, possesses a colourful history and a cosmopolitan heritage. My kind of place. Its shabby historic quarter – known as the Tuscan Venice – is crisscrossed with jade green canals along which skittish brown boys manoeuvre their launches as they attempt to coolly navigate…

Moroccan Zaalouk Tartine with Whipped Feta, Lemon and Mint

Dusk falls and the Jemaa el Fna – place of the vanished mosque – in the heart of the ancient walled médina is transformed into a seething mass of tribesmen, Berber villagers, performers and musicians who converge upon Morocco’s ochre-tinted city every evening to tell stories, juggle, bang drums in a trance-like state of bliss, dance, charm snakes,…

Cihangir Potato and Asparagus Salad with Dill and Mint

High above the heart of the richly historical neighbourhood of Cihangir in Istanbul there is a restaurant of unparalleled beauty complete with a wonderful terrace from which one can enjoy panoramic views of the mouth of the Bosphorus and the first bridge. Here the elegant wooden furniture is bleached by the sun and the tables are covered with…

Greek Wild Oregano-roasted Tomatoes and Whipped Feta on Garlicky Sourdough

I had no idea of what to make for lunch today, I wanted something quick and easy yet also incredibly vibrant and sumptuous and then I saw Raphael Deli’s wonderful Greek breakfast of tomatoes, ricotta with oregano and smoked sea salt on rustic bread. I immediately jumped away from my desk in order to drizzle some luscious plum tomatoes with…