Katy Hill’s Winter Cookbook
When not putting her culinary training into action as a chef at Michelin-starred Elystan Street in Chelsea, Katy likes to simplify and create hearty, filling food that’s easy to warm up after a busy day.
Better yet, she’s kindly offered to share some of her favourite winter recipes with you over the next few weeks. Get involved.
Get warm this winter with London chef Katy’s simple and hearty recipes…
After graduating from University of Leeds with a degree in Art and Design, Katy decided to explore her interest in food by undertaking culinary training at Leith’s school of Food and Wine. Since gaining this diploma she has fallen in love with restaurant kitchens and gained experience in a variety of styles, currently working at the Michelin-starred Elystan Street in Chelsea, under Phil Howard.
While she enjoys using her classical training at work, at home she likes to simplify and create hearty, filling food that’s easy to warm up after a busy service.
Smoked Haddock Kedgeree
“This could almost be considered healthy, but in the depths of December, who cares. For me, this is just a low-maintenance risotto with fewer rules. Like risotto, it can be chopped and changed with all sorts of different flavour combos.”
Ingredients (serves 2)
- 150g long grain rice
- 2 smoked haddock fillets
- 1 onion, thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 2 tsp curry powder
- 2 tins coconut milk
- 100g frozen peas
- 100g baby spinach
- 2 eggs
- 50g butter
- 1 lemon
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Put rice in large saucepan with pinch of salt and cover with water 1 cm above the rice. Bring to boil and gently simmer until all the water has been absorbed. Then, turn off the heat, cover with a lid and leave to steam.
- On a large, rectangular piece of baking paper, place your haddock fillets on one side and put butter and 2 slices of lemon on top. Fold other half of baking paper over the top and seal edges by folding inwards to create an airtight parcel. Bake for 10 mins in oven, until the fish is opaque and flakes apart. Leave it in the parcel, somewhere warm until the very last minute.
- In a frying pan, cook onion and garlic in vegetable oil with a pinch of salt on a low temperature until soft and translucent. Add curry powder and cook for further 2 minutes.
- Add coconut milk and simmer until it reaches your preferred consistency. I like mine quite loose.
- Boil small pan of water with splash of white wine vinegar and poach eggs for 2 minutes. Fold in rice, peas and spinach into coconut cream until spinach has wilted. At this point, taste and adjust seasoning with salt if needed.
- When you’re ready to eat, fold fish — along with all the buttery sauce in the parcel — into your main sauce. Stir very gently so fish only breaks up into large chunks and doesn’t become too mushy. Spoon into bowls and place poached eggs on top with pinch of salt and black pepper.
Baked rice pudding with boozy plum jam
“This is such a guilty pleasure of mine and is so easy to make. Don’t think school dinner stodge, think rich, creamy and indulgent, with a little sharpness and fresh fruitiness.”
- 10 ripe, juicy plums
- Caster sugar
- 1 cinnamon stick (or 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon)
- Almond extract (if you have it)
- 10g butter
- 110g pudding rice (or arborio, if you can’t find pudding rice)
- 250g milk
- 250g double cream
- 45g caster sugar
- Vanilla extract
- Demerara sugar
- In a pan, melt the butter and fry the pudding rice for 30 seconds then add all the remaining ingredients and bring to the boil until the rice floats at the top.
- Transfer to a heavy, oven-proof dish and cover with baking parchment. Bake at 160 degrees for about 35 minutes, stirring every 5–10 minutes to ensure the rice cooks evenly.
- Meanwhile, make your jam by halving and stoning the plums then chopping into chunks. At this stage, weigh the plums and calculate 20% of that as your weight of caster sugar to use.
- Place the caster sugar in a large pan with enough water to create the texture of sand then cook on a really high heat until the sugar JUST starts to turn golden and then add a generous slosh of brandy and allow to boil off for 1–2 minutes.
- Throw in your plums with the cinnamon and a few drops of almond extract if you have it, then continue to cook on a high heat for 10–15 minutes until they break down and all their juice has reduced to a lovely, deep red and your spoon leaves a trail on the bottom of the pan when stirred. Remove from the pan and feel free to adjust the flavour with a little extra brandy. It helps if your plums are at room temperature before adding to the sugar so they immediately release lots of juice.
- Once the rice in your pudding has no bite left and the cream has thickened, turn the oven onto grill, sprinkle the surface of your pud with a little demerara sugar and place under the grill until it caramelises. This is a highly unnecessary bit of extra sugar but I think it gives a little more richness and a little crunch in the eating. Remove from the oven and scoop into a bowl. Drizzle over a big spoonful of your plum jam and settle in.
French Onion Soup on Toast
“This recipe is simple, but also labour of love so start early, find a friend and take turns chopping and stirring. But if you’re patient it’s well worth the wait.”
- 150g butter
- 20 large brown onions
- 1 full bulb of garlic, minced
- 50ml brandy
- 500ml beef stock
- Gruyere cheese for grating
- Your favourite crusty bread and another knob of butter
- Peel and finely slice your onions. In your largest pan, melt the butter and add your onions with a few generous pinches of salt on a medium-high heat. Cover with a lid or tinfoil for a few minutes until the onions begin to steam and then uncover, add the minced garlic and stir regularly until they start to sink down.
- Lower the heat to medium and then simply wait. Stir every 5–10 minutes. It will take a good 1–2 hours as you don’t want the onions to burn, you simply want them to gradually take on colour and reduce down to a sticky pile of delicious goo.
- In the meantime, slice your bread and lightly fry in butter until golden. Grate your cheese.
- Once the onions have taken on a lovely, rich golden brown colour, turn the heat up and add your brandy. Wait for the brandy to boil and reduce down then add your chicken stock and simmer for 30 minutes.
- At this stage quickly taste for seasoning and add more salt if needed. It will hold beautifully in the fridge or freezer, ready to use. Or use a slotted spoon to pile onto your fried bread and grate over a generous layer of gruyere cheese then place under the grill until the cheese bubbles and colours.
Creamy Cannellini Beans with Pumpkin and Nduja
“Although this recipe is a little high-tech for home cooking, it has real depth of flavour and will definitely clear out any cobwebs if you brave the heat.”
- 1 small pumpkin (or squash, if you can’t find pumpkin)
- 20g nduja sausage meat
- 100g chorizo, diced
- 1 onion thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- Vegetable/rapeseed oil
- Olive oil
- 100ml chicken stock
- 400g tin of cannellini beans (alternatively, buy dried, soak overnight and then boil until tender. Retain cooking liquid)
1. Preheat your oven to 180. Prepare your pumpkin by carving in half. Cover the knife with a dishcloth to protect your hand as pumpkins can be tough. Once in half, scrape out the seeds and cut into thick wedges. Place in a baking tray and generously drizzle with olive oil and sea salt. Roast for 20–30 minutes until just tender but not falling apart. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
2. In a large frying pan, heat a tablespoon of vegetable oil on a medium high temperature. When the pan is hot, add your nduja and fry until it has melted away.
3. Add your sliced onion and minced garlic with a pinch of sea salt and cook on a simmer until soft and juicy.
4. Remove half of this mixture and blend in a food processor with half the roasted pumpkin, the chicken stock and 50ml of the juice from the cannellini beans until it is a loose, creamy texture. Taste for seasoning and add salt if needed, or a little yoghurt if its quite spicy.
5. With the remaining mixture, turn the pan up to a high heat and add your diced chorizo. Fry until golden and crispy, turn the pan heat down to a simmer again and add your remaining pumpkin and cannellini beans then gradually add your pumpkin puree until it is the consistency you want. I like mine thick and creamy but it’s equally delicious as a loose bean soup. Spoon into a bowl, stir through a little more yoghurt if you fancy and enjoy!