Adventurous, curious and passionate about food, Allegra McEvedy comes across as someone who would be a fantastic travelling companion. Apart from the fact that, due to her obsession with collecting knives, she must spend a lot of time being stopped at customs and having to justify her latest purchase.
From a simple wooden-handled Turkish picnic knife to the sexy, single-edged Japanese tool made for eel cleaning, Bought, Borrowed & Stolen tells the stories behind Allegra’s acquisitions. Also included are a wide variety of recipes she picked up on her travels: think Brazilian Breakfast Juice, Oranges in Tangiers and Rooibos Malva Pudding from South Africa.
One of the founders of the healthy fast food chain, Leon, Allegra wrote their first cookbook and it was her opinionated, slightly breathless voice that made that book such a joy. B,B&S has a similarly big-hearted feel and, like the Leon book, there are plenty of irresistible recipes here. This book is both an esoteric travel guide and a series of snapshots from a life well-lived.
Must try: Stuffed Pot-Roast Chicken with Pine Nuts and Pomegranate Molasses, Rosemary’s Pumpkin Curry, Smoked Duck Breast with Beetroot, Horseradish and Rocket.
Bought, Borrowed & Stolen by Allegra McEvedy is published by Octopus.
Homemade Peanut Butter
I had to try this homemade peanut butter which just uses peanuts and, if you think it needs it, some good flaky sea salt. If you have kids – or a Husband! – that likes peanut butter, they’ll be delighted that the leap from peanut-in-a-bag to peanut-butter-on-toast is so quick.
Salted peanuts – 1 bag
Irish Atlantic or Maldon sea salt – to taste
Preheat the oven to 160°. Scatter the peanuts on a flat baking tray and roast for 15-20 minutes, checking and shaking regularly, until a deep golden brown.
Set aside for a few minutes to cool, then pulverise in a food processor or blender with 3-4 tablespoons of warm water. Add salt to taste – depending on how salty the peanuts are, you might not need any more – and, if necessary, more warm water until you are happy with the consistency.
Store in a sterilised jar in the fridge. Best eaten fresh!
Adapted from Bought, Borrowed & Stolen by Allegra McEvedy.