Wednesday, 6 July 2016

(Not the) Cookery Calendar Challenge: June

I'm (sort of) joining with Penny at The Homemade Heart who invites fellow bloggers to choose one cookery book each month, select and cook two dishes from it and post their thoughts at the beginning of the following month.

Finish Potato Salad

In June I should have been cooking from Sabrina Ghayour's Persiana but, in honour of the EU Referendum (to which I fervently hoped the answer would be 'Remain'!) I decided, over the course of the week leading up to the vote, to prepare and eat one dish (or drink one wine/beer) from each of the 28 nations of the union.

Maltese Scrambled Eggs
Danish Bubble

I kicked off with Irish soda bread and rounded it off with a Hungarian goulash.  In between we were treated to a cheese pie from Sweden, a Danish bubble and squeak, a fiery pepper sauce from Coatia to go with Bosnian burgers, an almond cake from Spain and a Finish potato salad.

Bulgarian Yoghurt & Cucumber Soup

I tried two cold soups, the first a refreshing yoghurt and cucumber one, spiked with garlic, from Bulgaria, and the second a dayglo pink beetroot one from Lithuania.  The recipes ranged in effort required from the lightly pickled Latvian cucumbers to the tricky cheese noodles from Austria.  I included a few indulgences including a Dutch apple tart and some Slovenian apple doughnuts.

Lithuanian Beetroot Soup

There were a few dishes that did not particularly inspire, which may have had more to do with the lack of authentic ingredients or my inexperience in cooking them, but there were many more that I would happily try again.  These included a simple yet tasty mushroom and potato gratin from Estonia, a delicious Greek take on ratatouille, a delightful honey and lemon flavoured haloumi dish from Cyprus and a rich and creamy Portuguese custard tart.

Portuguese Custard Tarts
Dutch Apple Tart

Tackling three or four new recipes a day proved to be more of a challenge than I anticipated but I can honestly say I enjoyed the experience.  It's just a pity that what started out as a celebration of our union ended as homage to its demise.  The Italian prosecco bought to cheer our victory ended up drowning our sorrows.

Halloumi with Honey & Thyme

Persiana has not been forgotten and will be my cookery book for July.


  1. Gai I love this post and only wish with all my heart that the rest of the UK shared your (and my) feelings about unity and togetherness. Never mind, us bloggers will carry on sharing the love, that's all we can do X

    1. I'm glad you like it. I'm still coming to terms with the result but your're right, we've got to keep our hearts and minds and homes open.

  2. the last one looks like a grilled orange half?

  3. Pretty close Diana. It's a griddled lemon half, slightly overdone! It blended deliciously with the honey and the thyme.