Tom Kerridge’s Proper Pub Food – Ginger-Braised Ox Cheeks with Spiced Red Lentils

Oh my LORD! It’s been a whole month since I last blogged, and that post was way overdue too! Well, the less said about my slackness, the better. I just need to sort out my blogging mojo… my apologies mean nothing if I’m not actually going to follow them up with some regular posts.

So, let me tell you about the book I’ve cooked from this week – Tom Kerridge’s Proper Rub Food. To be fair I have actually only cooked one dish from it so far, but I seriously plan on cooking more and I’ve got a few dishes lined up for next week.

Ginger-Braised Ox Cheeks with Spiced Red Lentils (and watercress yogurt – which I didn’t make) was easy peasy to make, required the type of ingredients that I always have knocking about at home (in fact I only needed to buy the cheeks and fresh ginger) and was bloody lovely. The only problem I had was that I followed the recipe to the letter and put the full 900ml of beef stock in with the cheeks. I thought it was too much at the time and I would have preferred a thicker sauce – so I’ll be following this version of the recipe in future as it calls for only 600 mls. (However, I am thinking that I can use the leftover liquid as a base for a warming soup.)

Tom Kerridge's Proper Pub Food - Ginger-Braised Ox Cheeks with Spiced Red Lentils

Tom Kerridge's Proper Pub Food - Ginger-Braised Ox Cheeks with Spiced Red Lentils


Anyway, the cheeks were deliciously tender and nicely spiced thanks to the star anise, chilli, coriander and cumin seeds and ginger. However, the lentils were, for me, the best part of the dish and something I would do again. Of course I’ve made lots of spicy lentil dishes before (dahls) but this was incredibly simple in terms of the method and the ingredients used and it still tasted amazing!

As for other dishes I’m planning, there’s the Slow-Roasted Shoulder of Lamb with Boulangere Potatoes that I’ll be making this weekend (along with the Lemon Posset with Fennel Biscotti), and the Smoked Haddock Fishcakes with Fried Egg and Cheese Sauce needs to get in my belly asap! And that’s the thing with this book, there are so many truly delicious sounding recipes to choose from! But, best of all, most of them seem really approachable, affordable and easy to replicate at home. 

God bless Tom Kerridge. I praised his three course lunch menu, which is exceptional value at £19.50, when I had the joy of eating at The Hand & Flowers last July and now I have to praise him again. Yeah, ok this isn’t corned beef and tinned potatoes kind of cooking, but it’s refreshing to see a chef of this credibility (TWO Michelin stars) putting out a recipe book packed with doable recipes.

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