Issue 326
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"It's not the despair, Laura," says Brian Stimpson in Clockwise. "I can take the despair. It's the hope I can't stand." And as we're sat here chuckling at John Cleese's delivery of the most British line in movie history, we admit to being perilously filled with hope. Hope that though there's a long slog left, we might all be out of our homes in the not too distant future. Properly out. Until that day, you need things to do. For the eight weeks of lockdown Birmingham food blog Meat and One Veg has been tapping up top local chefs for their best 'at home' recipes in what is fast becoming a complete cookbook compendium. Wantonly jumping on that bandwagon, here's the latest, exclusive recipe from Brummie Masterchef winner Stu Deeley, who's still set to open a bricks and mortar venue in our city once the madness abates. It might look complex but broken into stages, it's easy and all ingredients are supermakertable. 


Thai paste ingredients:
3 green chillies, 3 cloves garlic, 70g shallots, ½ tbsp lemongrass, 30g ginger, zest of a lime, 15 stems coriander, 4 anchovies, ½ tsp ground cumin, ½ tsp ground coriander
Thai paste method:
Peel garlic and shallots. Remove the tops off the chillies, leave the seeds in and blend all ingredients until it resembles a paste. Easy right? You're committed now.
Thai green butter ingredients:
220g of your Thai green paste, 310g ghee, 60g coriander (stalks and all)
Thai green butter method:
Warm the ghee, add your paste, bring it to a gentle simmer. Allow the water content to evaporate and the flavours to infuse, that'll take about 10 minutes, and put to one side to cool a little. Once lukewarm blend with the coriander. Then place a J-Cloth (or a muslin cloth) inside a sieve and place both on top of a pan. Pour the butter mix into the J Cloth and allow it to drip through. That's done. Keep it room temperature. 
Thai green reduction ingredients:
7g ginger, 3g lemongrass, 4g shallots, 1 garlic clove, 5g ground coriander, 5g green chillies, 2g white peppercorns, 1 bay leaf, 1 lime (peeled), 60g rice wine vinegar
Thai green reduction method:
Chop all the vegetables roughly and place into a pan and cover with rice wine vinegar, simmer and reduce by half. You only want the liquid so sieve the ingredients out. That's done too. You're on a roll.   
Thai fishcake ingredients:
250g salmon (skinless), 250g hake (skinless), 1kg maris piper potatoes, 3 spring onions, 30g coriander, 4 cloves of garlic, 40g gherkins, 10g green chillies, 100g shallots, zest of 1 lime. Also some plain flour, 2 eggs, some breadcrumbs

Thai fishcake method:
Peel and boil potatoes in seasoned the water. Once the potatoes come to the boil drop the heat down to a simmer and cook until you can push a knife through the potato with ease. Drain, add the potatoes back to the pan and stir on a low heat to get rid of excess moisture. Whilst warm mash the potatoes. Dice the salmon and hake, slice the shallots and mince the garlic. In a separate pan sweat off the shallots and garlic, add the salmon and hake and cook lightly so the fish is just cooked. Chop the coriander and spring onions finely, then add to the fish. Dice the gherkins, chuck them in and add the lime zest. Now add it all to our potatoes and mix it all together thoroughly. Weigh the whole mix (if it's cool) into 7 portions (about 150g each) and roll into a ball and then flatten to resemble a disc. Smooth the edges by hand or use a ring-cutter. Once they've all chilled in a fridge, take three separate bowls and add flour to one, two beaten eggs to another and breadcrumbs to the last. One-by-one place the fishcakes into the flour dust off, then into the egg and then into the crumbs and repeat for each. If eating straight away, place to one side, if not bung them back into the fridge.  
Thai hollandaise ingredients: 25g of your liquid reduction, 135g of your butter, 4 egg yolks, 60g water, 20g lime Juice, 1 tsp salt  
Thai fishcake method:
The hollandaise is optional but if you're going to make it, do so just before eating. Get a pan of water on to a steady simmer. Find a mixing bowl that fits snugly on top of the pan, Add into the mixing bowl the egg yolks, reduction and water. Whisk until the mix doubles in volume and becomes fluffy and pale. When done, add the green butter slowly until it's mayonnaise consistency, take off the heat and add lime juice and salt. Keep warm until serving.  
Thai salad ingredients and method: 1/4 red pepper, 1/2 green chilli, 10 coriander leaves, 1 carrot, 1 spring onion, 1 asparagus spear. Slice it all thinly and mix.   
Thai dressing ingredients and method: 15g honey, 6g fish sauce, juice of half a lime, 5g rice wine vinegar, 5g sesame oil. Mix it all together. Done.

There's a two-part video of the step-by-step process on Stu's Instagram. Part One is here and Part Two is here



Keeper of Brum's latest Michelin star, Aktar Islam, is now doing takeaway from his Argentine steakhouse, Pulperia. The roast dinners feature a kilo of Galician prime beef (£60) or a Mangalitza pork loin (£45) with trimmings. to register interest. His cook-at-home recipe however, is from the subcontinent — Keralan Fish Stew.

Got water? Got onions? Got oil? Got time? You can nail a homemade version of Harborne Kitchen's only slightly more complex and by-now utterly legendary Roscoff Onion Broth, with one of the cheapest meals ever. HK are still selling vouchers, valid for 12 months from the day shutters finally go back up. Trific bday prez. Email  

Michelin-starred Brum food royalty, Luke Tipping, of Simpsons-fame, is all about a homely Chicken Noodle Broth that's super easy, super healthy and super affordable. Plus, in HUGE news, Simpsons will, next week, launch restaurant quality takeaway, prepared by their top crew. Follow their Facebook, Twitter or Insta for details. 

British and European Street Food awards winner, Lee Desanges, has got dessert sorted with his Joseph's Bad Boy Brownie recipe, named after his brownie potty son. Worth remembering Baked in Brick deliver an exceptional pork belly porchetta or char siu to your door. Their next order closes today (May 21) at 3pm. 
Head to Meat And One Veg for more West Mids 'Pan-demic' recipes
The Barber was the last place we visited pre-lockdown, but unfortunately for the bouffant growing atop the old bonce, we mean the Institute of Fine Arts, not the hair snipper. Such is our infatuation for the jewel in Brum's art crown, we did a lonely one-man high five to celebrate the launch of Barber Home, their online lockdown workaround that brings collabs with top artists — in the form of workshops and responses to their collection — to your digs. They're three episodes in, so far, (previous Barber Home's are archived here) and as of today, Brum ceramicist Wendy Tournay welcomes you into her studio for this week’s woot-woot. Responding to the Barber’s decorative Gold Teapot with Stand, made in 1785 (see that beaut here) Wendy shares with us the meditative slip-casting process used to create her own toot teapot (pictured) and also explains casting, fettling and finishing. Wish science would cast, fettle and finish this virus off, tbh. Full details
Following the Barber Institute into an 'at home' offering is Ikon. Visit all their current exhibitions digitally or check out 'The Six Lockdown Walks' — letters between artist John Walker and writer Alys Fowler about their daily state sanctioned strolls.

The next Virtual Walking Tour of Birmingham remains free and will take in Centenary Square and Gas Street Basin. Remember them?
Order by 1pm today and Opus will deliver wine to your door tomorrow. Six bottles from £40, within a 10 mile radius of town. Details 
Escape Hunt, makers of (in our opinion) Brum's best escape rooms, have launched two new print and play at home games. Thems be £14.99 a throw.    
Quick fire finale? Morridge is now open in the Great Western Arcade, Damascena Moseley, JQ and Harborne are now open for takeaway and Sabai Sabai Harborne is too.
Kat Slater see ya later.

"My doctor told me I had to stop throwing intimate dinners for four unless there are three other people."

Orson Welles

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WORDS: Tom Cullen
PICTURES: Becky Tranter (Stu Deeley)

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