No bread is an island

...entire of itself. (With apologies to John Donne!)
I live and breathe breadmaking. I’m an evangelist who would like everyone to make his or her own bread. I want to demystify breadmaking and show it as the easy everyday craft that it is. To this end I endeavour to make my recipes as simple and as foolproof as I possibly can.

I call my blog 'No bread is an island' because every bread is connected to another bread. So a spicy fruit bun with a cross on top is a hot cross bun. This fruit dough will also make a fruit loaf - or Chelsea buns or a Swedish tea ring...
I'm also a vegan, so I have lots of vegan recipes on here - and I'm adding more all the time.

Monday, 30 August 2010


I'm a great lover of lentils - they are the most versatile ingredient, IMO, and they're so quick and easy to cook they're almost a fast food!

Here's what I did after coming home late from the cricket on Saturday - it took me exactly 30 minutes:

Boiled the kettle, put 100g each lentils and rice in a pan, covered them with the hot water and left them to simmer.

In another pan, in a little sunflower oil, I fried a chopped onion, a teaspoon of cumin seeds, a couple of teaspoons of my own curry powder plus a teaspoon of asafoetida. (Not for everyone - most people use a pinch or two, but I love the stuff!)

To this I added several chopped mushrooms and some shredded Savoy cabbage. (I like to keep the cabbage in strips.)

After several minutes I added boiling water to this and let them cook until the veg were soft - meanwhile stirring the lentils and rice.

To the vegetables, I added a teaspoon of stock powder, a good dash of mushroom sauce, a sprinkle of dried herbs, several squirts of tomato puree and a dessertspoon of vegan pesto (Meridian).

When the veg were cooked I added them to the lentils and simmered the dish for a little while, while I defrosted, sliced and olive oiled a wholemeal roll. (I use olive oil which has been frozen and kept in the fridge as a spread - it stays solid and acts just like marge.)

With a glass of home-made red wine, this went down a treat! (And there's loads left for tomorrow!)

(Thanks to Mamta, who introduced me to asafoetida!)


  1. This looks quite tasty, a mix of several things, like a casserole dal. You say thanks to Mamta at the end of your recipe, but thanks for what, it isn't my recipe :-).

    1. Hi Mamta - I've added the reason I thanked you at the foot of the post!

  2. I googled lentils, cabbage and mushrooms, as that was all I had in the pantry, and came up with this. Wonderful! I am a lover of asafoetida too. I will add it to my repetoire. To make it more Indian, try adding mustard seed, coriander, fenugreek and turmeric to the cumin.