It finally looks as though my influence has rubbed off because my eight-year-old son has become interested in cooking lately. Nothing fancy – a pancake here, a toad-in-the-hole there, eggy soldiers, ham-and-cheese topped pizzas. But I’m delighted he’s taking an interest. I learned to cook at school, not because my mum encouraged me, but because she was such a dreadful cook (God rest her soul) that I figured I’d need to learn or starve when I left home.
This is my boy’s latest effort: breaded turkey goujons, with potato salad and sweetcorn. Nothing special, nothing fancy, but all the lad’s own work (with a little help from his five-year-old brother).
1 large turkey breast, cut into long strips (you should have about 10 strips)
100g plain flour
2 eggs, beaten
Breadcrumbs, made from 2 slices of wholemeal bread, whizzed in a food processor with 1 tsp paprika and 1 tsp black pepper
300ml sunflower oil, for frying
Using just four ingredients, this is about as simple as a kids’ dinner dish gets (OK, five, if you include the oil. OK, OKAY..six if you include the salad).
To be absolutely honest, I thought I’d made a mess of these when I first took them out of the oven. I imagined they would turn out like Yorkshire Pudding towers but instead they came out like cupcakes with sausages stuck in them.
The proof though is in the, ahem, pudding – and my kids snaffled them down like contestants in a hot-dog eating competition.
They’re dead easy to make, but just go easy on the oil – I went a glug too far.
4 frankfurter sausages
200g plain flour (approx)
200ml milk (approx)
1. In a mixing bowl, add the flour and create a well in the middle. Add the eggs and beat to a lumpy paste before adding the milk a little at a time. Keep mixing until you end up with a smooth batter than sticks to the whisk. Set aside.
2. Preheat the oven to 180C/Gas 4. Take a compartmentalised muffin tin and pour a little oil into each cup, just enough to cover the bottom. Put in the oven and heat up until very hot, approx. 15 mins.
3. Chop the franfurters into quarter lengths.
4. Remove the tray from the oven and using a ladle, pour in some of the batter mixture, until about a third-to-half full. Add 2-3 sausages to each compartment as quickly as you can, then return to the oven.
5. Cook for approx. 15-20 mins, resisting the temptation to peek, until the batter is risen, golden brown and crispy. Serve with salad.