Saturday, May 20, 2006

Pig’s bum and tuna

For lunch today, we had a lovely low-fat griddled tuna dish. Followed by a steamed pudding with lashings of custard. Ooh yeah.

364. Tataki of Tuna (Low Fat)
365. Quick Foolproof Custard (Basics etc)

I chose to reprise the pig's bum because I needed a pudding to go with the second custard recipe in the Basics etc. chapter, and I seem to have already completed all the other puddings and crumbles. The pig's bum is without a doubt my favourite pudding from the whole book.

Just in case you forgot…

The mixture for this steamed sponge is equal parts butter, sugar and flour, with 2 eggs, some baking powder, vanilla extract and milk (so just a normal sponge-cake mixture), with a rhubarb puree mixed through. And apart from the cooking of the rhubarb (which takes a scant 5 minutes), it’s all done in the processor.

pig's bum mixture

pudding in basin


You have to put the lid on the pudding basin, and let it steam for 2.5 hours. And in the meantime, I made the custard.

The quick foolproof custard is good for the custard-o-phobes among us (aah.. I remember when I used to be one of them!) because it dispenses with that whole nerve-wracking “stirring over low heat” stage. What you do is whisk some egg yolks, sugar and cornflour in a bowl. In a pan, you heat cream with a vanilla pod, and “allow the cream to rise in the pan”, before pouring it over the eggs, and whisking for a good 10 minutes until thick. I had no idea what allowing “the cream to rise in the pan” meant, so I just let it bubble a teensy weensy bit before adding it to the eggs. The custard took about 10 minutes with a KitchenAid mixer on medium heat.

Upon reflection, I don’t know why I didn’t try this custard back in the days when I couldn’t make custard, as it would have saved a lot of bother. But in the end, I guess it’s good that I forced myself to learn how to make custard with old fashioned stirring. Because even though this custard tasted fab, it did have a lot of tiny little air bubbles in it from the whisking, so it didn’t have that lovely voluptuous gloop of real custard.

Nigella says to have cold custard with the pudding, so I set the custard aside while I made the main.

Tataki of tuna is ideally, a long round tail piece of tuna, seared on all sides, and sliced thinly. I had to substitute tuna steaks, as they were all I could find, but the result was still good. I dusted the sides with wasabi powder, and cooked them briefly on a high heat in a cast-iron frypan.

Nigella says to serve with thin slivers of spring onions and a sprinkling of coriander, as well as a side salad of cucumber slices. As for sauces, she suggests a paste made of wasabi powder mixed with soy, or a mixture of soy, sugar and lime juice. I made both, just to try each one.

I also served it with cold soba noodles, dressed with a mixture of all the Japanesey sauces from my pantry – mirin, soy, rice vinegar, and honey.

tuna and cucumber salad


wasabi powder mixed with soy

one bowl

It was a fabulous lunch. The noodles, the tuna, the cucumber, the sauces – all lovely. After plowing through so much of the rich, meat-and-potato heavy food that Nigella favours, this was a refreshing contrast. Goodness, how I love soba noodles! It was so healthy and delicious, and not in that resignedly virtuous way – it actually tasted good, irrespective of its being low-fat.

Mmm… now check out the dessert. I think words are superfluous in this instance; just check out the photos…



one delicious plate

Pig’s bum is totally the best.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to second your comment that Pigs Bum is the best ! I was inspired by the last time you made this and had a go a few weeks ago and it is indeed Fab I've already had requests to make it again :) Thanks for the inspiration