To begin: Curried cauliflower soup with crispy leek bhaji
Roasted cauliflower is a real winter treat, and its nutty flavour goes great with the blended Indian spices that remind you of warmer climes. I was challenged by a friend to come up with a meat and dairy-free soup that needed no apologies – this was the result, and I was proud and delighted to be able to serve it along with the crispy leek bhajis.
Sushi Dragon Roll
Secret course: Smoky Dragon roll
Smoked mackerel and avocado topped sushi roll.
Dry rubbed ribs
Main course: Dry rub pork ribs with buttermilk onion rings and rainbow coleslaw
Dry rub slow-roast veg with buttermilk onion rings and rainbow coleslaw
“Dry rub” – where a mix of ground dry spices, salt and brown sugar are rubbed into the meat before cooking – is my favourite kind of barbecue. The spice mix I use is based on the regional style of Kansas City, but I kept my food miles down by walking the 50 yards across Cowley road to Alder’s butchers for some racks of baby-back pork ribs. The ribs are cooked for 18 hours, and I’m serving them with buttermilk-battered onion rings and my award-deserving rainbow coleslaw.
For vegetarians, the same Kansas City spice rub was used on meltingly tender staves of a selection of slow-roast vegetables, including sweet potatoes, sprout flowers, courgette and aubergine. Secret side: Jalapeño and Chipotle Ice Cream
Sherry and brown butter ice cream with crepe dentelle
Secret course: Sherry and brown butter ice cream and crepe dentelle
Rhubarb Custard Tart
Dessert: Bruleed custard tart with forced rhubarb and blood orange
This almond shortcrust tart is a favourite of mine all year round to serve with whatever vibrant red fruit is in season. In March, that means lightly poached rhubarb and segments of blood orange, but last summer you may have seen it when it was a strawberry custard tart.
For the March 4th Supper Club, in collaboration with the Restore car park and with inspiration from Michelin starred chef Massimo Botturato, I served this dessert as “Oops, I Dropped the Rhubarb Custard Tart”. You can see some pictures of this bold and beautiful interpretation of the dessert in the gallery below.