Caldo Gallego, a Spanish White Bean Soup with Sherry Vinegar

A beautiful dish for early autumn evenings, this beautiful aniseedy broth with lightly braised haricot beans, tomatoes, courgette and fennel is seasoned with a really good Spanish sherry vinegar, chilli and fennel seeds but it’s the punchy mojo verde – a garlicky green herb and garlic sauce originating from the Canary Islands – that makes…

Saint-Raphaël Soft-boiled Egg, Shallot and Tarragon Tartine

“Egg dishes have a kind of elegance“ wrote Elizabeth David, “a freshness, an allure which sets them quite apart from any other kind of food so it becomes a great pleasure to be able to cook them properly and to serve them in just the right condition.” It’s exactly that quality that makes this simple tartine…

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…

Citrusy Herbed Labneh and Roasted Tomato Tartine

Yoghurt is one of the most important components of the modern Mediterranean diet and there is rarely a table where it isn’t featured in some form or other; as part of a main dish, as a dip mixed with chopped herbs, in a dessert or even as a drink. On Mondays, our evening meal often consists of various…

San Marino Bustrengo, a Fresh Apple, Fig and Polenta Cake

Bustrengo is a traditional Italian dessert originating from the humbly named ‘The Most Serene Republic of San Marino’, one of the world’s smallest and oldest republics which, though not technically part of Italy, is surrounded by Emilia-Romagna and Le Marche regions near the Adriatic Sea making it an easy day trip from Florence and Bologna. It’s…

Ligurian Basil Gnocchi with Broccoli, Spinach and Creamy Cheesy Sauce

This beautiful dish is perfect for these early autumn days because, although it’s comforting, it is ultimately still light and delicious. The recipe is a little more complicated than you’re used to from me but it all comes together quite quickly in the end. If you don’t fancy making the gnocchi, you can always replace them with large white beans or thinly sliced cooked…

Sicilian Pea and Ricotta Salata Bruschetta

The word ‘ricotta’ means re-cooked and ‘salata’ means salted. Ricotta Salata is a Sicilian cheese made from the whey part of sheep milk which is pressed, salted and aged for at least 90 days. It is milky white in colour with firm texture and a refreshingly salty taste (similar to Cheshire cheese). It’s great for slicing, crumbling and…

Mallorcan Smoky Tomato and Garlic Dip

On a recent trip to Mallorca, breakfast consisted of endless cups of darkly strong black coffee, freshly baked ‘ensaïmada’ – a beloved Mallorcan sweet pastry originating from Arabia – and ‘pan con tomate’ (Spanish tomatoes on garlicky toast). I could happily live forever on the latter so I wanted to create something similar for this…