A chilly stay in the Cotswolds included a visit to a delightful pub called the Chequers Inn at Churchill, Oxfordshire. As rain lashed down outside and my dog snuggled close to the roaring fire, we tucked into plump, bouncy, interestingly devilled kidneys on toast. This is my interpretation of that heartening lunch, perfect for these nippy nights as we head to winter proper. I’d thought of grinding Moroccan ras al hanout for the devil but settled on Basque piment d’Espelette, although cayenne or paprika is more usual.
Prep: 15 min
Cook: 15 min
8 lambs kidneys
3 tbsp flour
1 tsp cayenne, paprika or other spicy mix
4 thin slices of sourdough-style bread
1 tbsp vegetable oil
few sprigs flat leaf parsley
Halve the kidneys lengthways and cut out the white core. Dust with flour shaking off excess, toss again with cayenne. Smear the bread on both sides with butter. Place on a pre-heated grill pan over a medium heat. Dry the bread rather than toast it, turning regularly until crisp and golden. Turn off the heat. Heat the oil and remaining butter in a frying pan and when hot, add the kidneys, tossing regularly as they plump and wriggle, cooking for a few minutes until just cooked through. Turn off the heat, leaving them to settle and weep into the pan juices for a couple of minutes before piling over the toast. Garnish with finely chopped parsley if you have it and serve with English or Dijon mustard.