I won't go on and on about why I spent a year finding such amazing recipes, and how much I love food and how most of my memories are associated with great meals – instead, I'm just going to give you ALL these recipes in one shot.
My breakfasts have switched so much but I go through phases where once I find a recipe I really like, I will make the same breakfast for myself, day in and day out, on repeat for a solid two weeks. Right now it's the Chocolate Chip Pancakes. I would for sure recommend adding a little coffee to your pancake batter, it adds a very subtle flavour and just elevates your breakfast more than usual. Also, if you're into it, I found a fantastic recipe for savoury pancakes. I missed the sweetcorn pancakes with salsa, sour cream and guacamole I ate at Gail's Bakery in the UK so I just had to make my own minus the sour cream and guac. Prior to pancakes, my breakfast of choice was a really nice shakshouka, before which it was the TikTok sensation – baked oats. Lastly, the french toast at Nutcracker in Bombay just has to have an honourable mention.
MAINS and salads
It's no secret that I plan my days around my meals – here are some of my favourites for lunch and/or dinner. If I'm craving Asian food, I'm all about taking plain egg noodles and making dressings and sauces for them from scratch, whether that's Yakisoba, Korean-inspired or my favourite is a Spicy Peanut and Garlic sauce to coat the noodles in. When I want something a little healthier, my go-to is a Spicy Nandos-Style Chicken Pita – I marinate some chicken in Nandos' Peri Peri XX Hot sauce, spread tzatziki on one side, hummus (store-bought) on another, stuff the chicken and some salad, cucumber, tomatoes, olives in a hollow pita and grill it on both sides for a little char. Honourary mentions – the Spicy Thai Chicken and Quinoa from Pinch of Yum and the Greek Chicken Grain Bowls from The Kitchn.
If you know me even a little bit you have to know I'm obsessed with pasta – so I have a couple of recipes I flit between every other week. The first has to be a pasta bake which could not be simpler. I use Gigi Hadid's Spicy Vodka Pasta recipe to make the actual pasta and then ladle it into an ovenproof dish in three parts, adding a little mozzarella in between the layers and a little more on top. It goes into a fan oven for 10 minutes at 180 C until the cheese is bubbling around the edges and *chefs kiss*. From time to time I also crave a really rich risotto but because I couldn't find arborio rice, I made it with brown rice and while I'm aware it might be a cardinal sin on my part (I think I can hear all my Italian friends gasping in horror) but I was hungry and desperate times led to desperate but delicious measures. I added mushrooms, olives and some fresh arugula to mine and it tasted divine.
I promise I'm all about balance so I had to include some of my favourite salad recipes as well. The Asian inspiration carries on here as well, I make this Thai chopped chicken salad almost twice a week and I'm still not bored of it, it's just that good. Another fan favourite in my house is this Nutty Green Veggie Crunch Salad from Ashley at Blissful Basil and is a fantastic option for cold meals in a heat-wave. I do love a good Chicken Caesar Salad and in June I figured out how to make croutons at home from scratch so that I could enjoy the salad in its most authentic form from the comfort of my kitchen. I make the dressing from scratch but because I can't find anchovies as easily at the moment, I've got two dressing options for you to choose from – with and without anchovies. Honourary mentions include the Shredded Chicken Salad and the Help Yourself Grain Fridge Salad from BBC Good Food.
Now let's get down to what you're really here for. I've been going on and on about my chocolate chip brownies for ages at this point, and the only bonus I've added this year is a dark chocolate ganache to go on top of it. It's always a hit at parties, it makes for a great gift for others or even for yourself at 11 PM on a Sunday night, and was a must-have at my Christmas dinners back in the day. Speaking of Sunday night cravings, I recently stumbled upon a single-serve chocolate chip cookie recipe – need I say more? And last but definitely not the least is an easy single-layer chocolate birthday cake which I like to smother in frosting.
I would continue writing about more recipes but my mouth is watering and I need to go find some chocolate. Although please do let me know if you'd be interested in restaurant guides for different cities? I've got at least seventy to recommend in and around London.