Saturday, August 23, 2014

Review - Would Meyer honour a 10 year guarantee?

About 6 years ago I invested in some Meyer pans from Debenhams. They cost more than I usually paid for pans but they looked and felt gorgeous and came with a 10 year guarantee. I have loved using them ever since.

Six years on and 3 of the 4 pans are still good as new. I am a daily scratch cooker - no microwave in my kitchen - so they do get used lots and lots.

But sadly the forth pan is missing. Posted to Meyer under the guarantee as the handle had become very wobbly and water was starting to escape through the holes where the handle rivets were.

I had dug out the receipt and guarantee and read it. Seeing something about manufacturing fault versus normal wear and tear made me nervous. Would they say the handle coming loose was the latter so hard luck? Hubby popped the pan in a box and sent it off for me. These days it is so common to be fobbed off or ignored by companies when things go wrong that I didn't really expect much. I wouldn't have been surprised to never hear of my beloved but injured pan again.

But, lo and behold, a few days later this arrived:

With an accompanying letter apologising that the design has changed slightly (it looks to me as though they have improved the way the handle is fastened on - so clearly a company that learns lessons as well as giving excellent service) and for my inconvenience.

My new pan is lovely. My other pans are still brilliant. I am one very happy and impressed customer.

So well done Meyer!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Recipe - Vegetable and Quorn Curry

This is a cheap easy recipe and the curry is tasty but not too hot.  The main expense would be stocking up on spices but I have kept it to ones that I use again and again in many recipes so the price per recipe is low.


3 shallots or 1 medium onion
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon coconut oil (no need for the expensive virgin stuff for cooking, refined is fine for this and much cheaper - you can use another cooking oil if you prefer)
1" root ginger
1 tsp cumin seeds (use ground if you prefer)
1 tsp coriander seeds ( use ground if you prefer)
1 tsp turmeric
2 cardamon pods
2 cloves
1 can chopped tomatoes
2 large handfuls of any vegetables you want to use up  (on this occasion I used sweet potato and butternut squash as I often have some of these left over from other meals and they do take on curry flavours wonderfully) 
1 handful of quorn chicken-style pieces 
Water as required
50 g creamed coconut (1 sachet if you buy Patak's creamed coconut in a box - handy to avoid waste)
2 tsp garam masala
A few coriander leaves (optional - I had some anyway but wouldn't buy specially for this recipe)

Peel and finely chop the onion, garlic, and ginger and saute gently in the coconut oil until softened. Meanwhile grind the cumin and coriander seeds together in a pestle and morter if you are using whole seeds. Once the onions are softened stir in the cumin, coriander, and turmeric and saute gently for another couple of minutes.  Add the canned tomatoes, cardamon pods and cloves and stir well. Add the vegetables and quorn and enough water to cover. Simmer gently until the vegetables are the texture you like (this will depend on the veg you choose and your own preference).  Stir in the creamed coconut, garam masala, and coriander leaves and cook for a few more minutes.

I like mine served with brown rice.

Serves 4.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Review - I love this Mason Cash Pestle and Mortar!

I bought myself a pestle and mortar years ago. A cheap little marble one from a supermarket. It has driven me nuts for years. It was too small - the spices kept jumping out. I could never grind them well enough. It felt fiddly and annoying. So I finally invested in a decent one recently from Mason Cash.

This one is made of unglazed stonewear (glazed on the outside for ease of cleaning) and costs around £12 for the medium which seems a perfect size to me. They do a smaller one at about a tenner and a larger one for about £14.

What can I say - I think it is a thing of absolute beauty. I could quite happily just look at it. The weight, feel, balance, everything about it screams quality and feels such a pleasure to use. Grinding spices is a joy now not an annoying chore. The pouring spout is great for accurately tipping the herbs/spices where you want them. I just love this kitchen item.

I have not been contacted in any way by Mason Cash - this is an honest opinion of an item I have bought myself.