Food is about taste. It’s about flavour, it’s about that TLC you put into the dishes you are making for someone, or even yourself, by knocking something together instead of picking up a microwave meal or calling for a takeaway (not that I don’t do that once in a while too).
The point is that tasty cooking, tasty food doesn’t have to mean spending hours slaving over a stove. It can be had from opening a tin of beans, cooking them with a simple holy trinity of garlic, chilli and ginger, then serving them with some toast. It’s not gourmet, it’s not grand, but it is a very quick supper, one that you have cooked yourself and most importantly, it’s tasty.
I repeat: you will have cooked. Detractors will say this is not cooking, that jazzed up beans is too easy, that cooking should be hard; it should require effort and anxiety, time and precision. Well, I say what a load of mince – and not the tasty type. Tasty food is not, and should not, be scary or hard.
Any good ingredients, whether fresh or processed, combined with care and thought will result in a tasty dish. Of course you can cook complex recipes and try different techniques; there’s no doubt this has amazing results, but cooking and eating are above all about fun.
Tasty is a book for cooks and for anybody wanting to have a go. It is not a book with complicated techniques, nor is it fashion-led. It’s taste-led. It’s the food I cook for my friends, family and guests.
Tasty by Tony Singh is published by Headline, £20. Singh’s new restaurant The Old Bakehouse, West Linton (01968 660 830, www.theoldbakehousewestlinton.com) is open now.