Rabbit Fricassée… and an Erica cake

With rabbit and girolles both perfectly in season (not now, I know – this is slightly late) this one sort of suggested itself

Sweet, milky rabbit with garlic and pungent mushrooms, wine, parsely and a touch of cream

It’s fun to do rabbit, because you get a chance to butcher and use the whole animal.  The legs and body were poached for 40 minutes, and picked for the lean meat

The saddle fillets, which are really easy to remove with a sharp knife, take a minute or two in a hot pan

When this is all combined with some sweated onions, wine and girolles and finished with cream and parsley, you’ve got a pretty magic little autumn team

And now, for the real star of this post:

This is the first appearance for not just Erica Black, but also one of her notorious cakes

Nobody ever knows in what form they will arrive (not least because they are normally partly devoured by the chef on the bike ride to dinner). Less do they know what they are likely to contain. Past hero ingredients have been peanut m&ms and yoghurt

They normally arrive oddly shaped and gaffer taped into tin foil, like a Mexican cocaine smugglers cargo

They are however always strangely good, and this lemon drizzle cake was no exception

I defy even the most proficient of bakers to produce a cake this soft and lemony after a 10 mile bike ride and a bottle of wine (let’s face it, two bottles)


Poussin. Crispy Sage. Lemon. Bacon. Lentil.

Simple but lovely, and there’s something nice about having a portion sized bird.

Stuffed with lemon and sage, browned in a pan and chucked in the oven the Poussin is sweet and juicy.

Crisp up the sage leaves in the same pan with butter and then make a little sauce by adding a splash of red wine to the pan juices.

Served with lentils steeped in thyme and mixed with bacon.

Lamb Neck Fillet. Beetroot Thoran. Mustard Potato Fry.

I can only take credit for the lamb here.  Bit of a slow post, as we had this a while ago when lamb was just in season.

For the beetroot thoran, the amazing mustard potato fry and the warm yoghurty cucumber bit (i.e. All the best bits of the meal) I deferentially credit East London’s new guru of Keralan cookery S. Newman.

Lamb neck is cheap (even from the Ginger Pig) but it feels and tastes sweet and luxurious.  A billion times better than a fillet steak, simply pan fried and finished with a little butter, and great alongside these Indian flavours.


Sirloin. Dauphinoise. Bistro Salad. Dijon Dressing.

After work one night I was feeling like eating something really classic and French.

This is all so easy and quick, just slice up your potato and onions for the dauphinoise and cover them in a cream that has nutmeg, thyme and garlic in.

I gratinate them later with parmesan too, which is not classic but is tasty.

Steak pan fried on a medium heat with a salted butter baste from halfway through cooking and a classic dressing that’s one part dijon, 3 parts olive oil plus a splash of white wine vinegar and slat and pepper served over bistro leaves.

The kind of thing it’d be great if Cafe Rouge actually did well.