Bill Granger: Feed Me Now! cookbook22

Posted on May 26, 2009 by ChristieCookware Tests, Dinner Time


[Baked meatballs w/ tomato & tamarind sauce and pilaf w/ currants & cashews]

Feed Me Now! Love you long time!

This review is a little overdue, but in light of my recent adventures, it couldn’t be helped.

I’m quite a big Bill fan to be honest. I adore the breakfast food in his restaurant, Bills. I mean, who doesn’t? Especially the corn fritters with bacon and the ricotta hotcakes with honeycomb butter (pure genius combo!).

If I’m really honest, I’ll have to say that I love eating his food and reading his cookbooks but not watching his TV programs. The fact that he’s a self taught cook and not a chef makes his recipes so approachable, homely and incredibly tasty but this doesn’t translate on screen with his perfect teeth, crease-free t-shirts and sparkling kitchen.

I shouldn’t really hold that against him, after all, I do love clean kitchens :)

bill-granger-feed-me-now

The book is set out in helpful sections such as ‘Dinner Dash’, ‘On A Shoestring’ and ‘Freeze Me’ plus suggestions for whole meals with sides, condiments and sweet treats.

As usual, the photography is wonderful – fresh and clean without being sterile. The plating, too, is equal parts haphazard and beautifully arranged. Just enough to make you think it’s possible to recreate in your own tiny kitchen.

That’s the thing about Bill’s recipes, you really want to make them. How many cookbooks do you buy to drool over the perfect cheffy garnishes only to put the recipes in the ‘too hard basket’? I know I have a few.

Bill’s recipes aren’t like that. They use fresh produce cleverly and simply to really make the most of it and this cookbook is full of those kind of wonderful gems.

I made the baked meatballs with tomato and tamarind sauce and the saffron pilaf (that’s my photo above). Super easy and fabulously hearty. It’s meant to be accompanied with a mint sambal and spinach raita. But I was too lazy.

Although I was creative with the leftovers. The meatballs were stuffed into baguettes with cucumber and feta cheese and eaten with gusto.

The extra sauce was used as a warm salad dressing. I tossed chickpeas, canned tuna, red onion slices and baby spinach into a bowl and then dribbled over the warm tomato sauce. Absolutely gorgeous.

Still haven’t had enough of Bill?

Then pop on over to Not Quite Nigella who recently interviewed Bill Granger. She asked some great questions and teased out more than a few interesting answers.

One last thing, Bill Granger’s Feed Me Now! is published by Harper Collins, if you’re interested in that kind of thing. A big thank you to Nicola for sending me a copy.

Happy reading! Christie x

RECIPES

Baked meatballs with tomato and tamarind sauce

500g minced beef or lamb (I used beef)
1 small onion, grated
55g fresh white breadcrumbs
3 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
6 tbsp chopped coriander leaves, plus extra to garnish
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 red chilli, seeded, finely chopped
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
3 tbsp olive oil

Preheat the oven to 220C.

Combine all the ingredients, except the oil, in a large bowl. Mix gently with your hands, then shape into small balls (I find wetting my hands makes this easier).

Toss the meatballs gently in the oil in a roasting tin and bake for 10-15 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the tomato and tamarind sauce (see below).

Transfer the meatballs and the sauce into a frying pan over medium heat and stir carefully until the meatballs are coated in sauce then simmer for 10 minutes.

Serve with pilaf with currants and cashews and a condiment plate of spinach raita and mint sambal.

Tomato and tamarind sauce

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 spanish onion, finely diced
2 cloves of garlic, sliced
1 tbsp grated ginger
1 tbsp ground cumin
1 tsp turmeric
2 x 425g tins chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp tamarind pulp (or 2 tbsp lime juice)
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Heat the olive oil in a large heavy-based pan over a medium to low heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until the onion is translucent. Add the garlic, ginger, cumin and turmeric and stir for 2 minutes or until fragrant.

Then add the tomatoes, tamarind, sugar, salt and pepper and cook, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes.

Pilaf with currants and cashews

1 tbsp light-flavoured oil
1 tsp butter
1 onion, finely sliced
1 tsp sea salt
500g (2 1/2 cups) basmati rice
1L (4 cups) boiling water
2 pinches saffron threads
30g (1/4 cup) currants
2 tbsp chopped cashews

Place a large pan with a tight-fitting lid over a medium to high heat. Add the oil, butter, onion and salt and cook for 5 to 10 minutes, or until lightly coloured.

Add the rice and stir for 1 minute then pour in the boiling water. To this, add the saffron and currants and bring to the boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and cook for 10 minutes.

Turn off the heat and leave the pan for 10 minutes. Do not lift the lid as it will interrupt the cooking process. Serve immediately with chopped cashew nuts sprinkled over the top.

Want more beefy recipes? Check these out:

Pepper crust beef fillet w/ vegetable skewers (GF)
Chilli beef and broccoli stirfry (GF)

  • I’m with you – I’m a big fan of Bill Granger’s style – I regularly cook his recipes.

    Photography is beautiful as usual.

    I’m glad to hear that Bill’s new book is fabulous.

  • Yum! These look so great and you cant go wrong with the ricotta hotcakes.

  • Ah yes he did say the meatballs were great so great choice! I adore meatballs, especially in rolls (I always order the meatball roll at the Vietnamese bakery).

  • I’m glad someone else shares my unease over that too white to be true grin…I totally agree that his cookbooks and recipes are much better on the page than on the TV set.

  • I have never heard of him til now. Since he is getting rave reviews, I will pick up a copy of his book! :)

  • Mmmm breakfast at Bills – a Sydney institution. Though the reason the scrambled eggs are so good is because he uses cream instead of milk.

  • I didn’t know him wow appetizing recipes worth to see this cookbook, btw very original name :)

    Cheers!

    Gera

  • I bought 1/8 of a cow last year, and I have piles and piles of ground beef to get through.

    Thank goodness for this recipe. I’ll be trying it this week. Looks fabulous!

  • This is one of the *best* easy dinner recipes ever! It was published ages ago in good living in the Sydney Morning Herald when he was doing the column there. I’ve been a dedicated fan of this dish ever since. Awesome for a “help your self” dinner party!

  • Ju’eta

    I thought his restaurant is rather over-rated but nevertheless I love his recipes. They are fool-proof, easy, no fuss. Just what a Mum needs!

  • I love your creative ideas for the leftovers. The meatball baguettes sound really tasty, and the tamarind sauce sounds so versatile.

  • A great recipe Christie…I’m quite a fan too of Bill! Thanks for sharing and I hope you’re well in the UK!

  • Sounds very tasty! Thanks for keeping us up on the Aussie chefs, we hear very little of them over here! OMG, the bacon and eggs picture at NQN is giving me serious breakfast cravings at this late hour!

  • I made these tonight (with beef), and they were fabulous. Each one was an explosion of flavours. I was even lazier, serving the meatballs over plain rice, but still, they were so good!

  • I’ve always found Bill Granger’s food to be accessible, almost something you could do at home yourself if you bothered to take the time and care to do so. Have a few of his cook books but not this one.

  • Looks fantastic! I love the pilaf with cashews :)

  • Oh wow! All those dishes look amazing.. cant wait to try out.. keep it up!! cheers!
    nora

  • Rachel

    So after coming to this link via TasteSpotting, I just had to try it out (I have a serious weakness for tamarind). Currants were nowhere to be found so I substituted chopped dried apricots. Phenomenal flavour. Great post – thanks for the inspiration.

  • Love your blog. Tried for several days to get through. Must be getting an awful lot of traffic! Anyway, great photos, great recipes! Thanks for the entertainment!

  • @Joumana – Thanks so much for coming back so many times to get through! Yes, I’ve had a few visitors so the bandwidth was exceeded. I love your blog too! I’ve been searching for a Lebanese blog for a while now :)

  • @Rachel – Apricots are a great substitute :P

  • Bill Granger uses some great ingredients, healthy and fresh. I will be looking to buy his books. Thank you

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