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November 10, 2012

hugh’s 3 good things s01.

Episodes 1-5

Hugh reveals his theory that three-ingredient dishes are ideal for simple but delicious cooking... and tests it by competing against other chefs.

Hugh faces River Cottage chef Gill Meller and guest chef Florence Knight, from London's Polpetto. The star ingredient is beetroot.

The star ingredient this time is tomatoes. The recipes are clams with tomatoes and garlic; slow roasted shoulder of lamb with tomato and chard; and sweet raw tomatoes with lightly cured grey mullet, and finely chopped raw shallots.

It's all about the courgette this time. There's courgettes and mozzarella, and pasta and creamy courgette soup from Hugh. Gill Meller cooks a salad of courgette, mange tout and lemon, and Florence serves chargrilled courgette with salty goats cheese and honey.

On the menu is curried mushrooms in a baked spud, a simple mushroom, blue cheese and spinach salad, a pastry parcel full of mushrooms and pancetta, and pigeon, polenta and button mushrooms.

There's kale, onion and chestnut pizza on the menu this time. Also kale with squid and chick peas, kale with lobster, and a perfect pasta and kale soup recipe from Hugh too.

Lamb: For the second week of the food competition, the chefs turn their attention to meat.

Ham and Bacon: The star ingredient this time is ham and bacon.

Chicken: Hugh's out to prove that you really can make a winning dish from three key ingredients, and he's putting his cooking where his heart is.

Venison: It's the penultimate day of meat week, and the chefs take on venison, a meat 'deer' to Hugh's heart.

Beef: It's the final day of meat week, and it's time for beef to take centre stage.

Apples (Savoury): Hugh and Gill Meller are joined by Sophie Wright, who's cooked for the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio and Roman Abramovich.

Pears: Hugh creates a warm pear, black pudding and chicory salad, as well as a ginger pear and custard pudding.

Dried Fruit: On the menu this time is partridge, dried pear and spelt, dates with lemon and lamb's breast, and a salad of chickpeas, apricots and carrot.

Citrus: Hugh serves a simple lemon sole with lemon-flavoured mash. Also on the menu is griddled oranges with roasted pumpkin and Halloumi cheese, and grapefruit, squid and avocado

Apples: Hugh makes posh apple crumble. Gill Meller makes an apple flan with almond paste, and Sophie makes a ricotta cheese doughnut with apple pureé.

Hugh makes a simple ceviche, served with a hot lime and mint-flavoured broth, while Caribbean fusion chef Euten Lindsay fries his black bream with Jamaican allspice with pickled carrots. River Cottage's Danish chef Kasper Gaard hopes to win the day with a plate of bream poached in butter and served with a celeriac purée.

Hugh is never happier than when combining mussels with leeks and cider. He likes it so much, he's doing two dishes that way, one hot and one cold. Kasper Gaard serves smoked mussels, tart sea buckthorn berries and vanilla sauce, and guest chef Euten Lindsay tries to muscle his way into contention with his steamed mussels with chilli and ginger.

Hugh combines his crabmeat with chorizo and peas, representing the best of the sea, land and veg garden - all served on a piece of toast. Kasper Gaard makes a punchy crab soup that uses every part of the animal, including the ground-up shell.

Hugh fries his mackerel coated in oatmeal and serves it with rhubarb compote, as well as baking another mackerel in foil with bay and lemon. Kasper Gaard goes back to his Danish roots by pickling the mackerel with red onion and fennel, while Euten Lindsay creates a Jamaican classic, mackerel run down, with coconut milk and peppers.

Hugh serves squid grilled with almonds and home made hummus. He also serves barbecued squid with a salad including parsley and edible flowers. Euten Lindsay grills his squid with courgettes and a lemon dressing, and Kasper makes a salad of boiled and fried squid with horseradish and baby leeks.

Hugh cooks up a couple of classics - pasta, tomato and blue cheese and a simple spaghetti with garlic and olive oil. Hugh's joined in this pasta cook-off by Allegra McEvedy, founder of the award-winning Leon chain, and River Cottage regular Tim Maddams.

Hugh's plumped for walnuts to make baklava, as well as some hazelnuts to stir in with ricotta and honeycomb to make a simple but delicious pudding. He's not the only one with his hands in the hazelnut jar though, as Tim uses them to make melt-in-the-mouth macaroons, while Allegra knocks up a chestnut brittle mixed with cider-soaked prunes and yoghurt.

The star ingredient is pulses. River Cottage's Tim Maddams makes a Mexican-inspired black bean soup; award-winning chef and author Allegra McEvedy opts for a Spanish-influenced chickpea, chorizo and red pepper tapas dish; while Hugh laps up the lentils, combining puy lentils with celeriac and sultanas in a perfect summery salad, and red lentils with bacon and onions in a wintery soup. Hugh's mum judges the results.

Rice is the key store cupboard ingredient this time. Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall goes Japanese, teaming his rice sushi-style with seaweed and avocado and also using it Caribbean-fashion in a simple red beans and rice dish with coconut milk. Allegra McEvedy demonstrates her own version of that Chinese restaurant classic, egg fried rice. And from River Cottage chef Tim Maddams there's a West Country twist on pilaf, mixed with chicken stock and sorrel.

Hugh creates an irresistibly rich and delicious chocolate pudding with prunes and brandy, along with some DIY chocolate, fruit and nut bars. River Cottage chef Tim Maddams makes indulgent chocolate truffles. Guest chef Allegra McEvedy plans to outdo the boys with the ultimate South American-inspired chilli-spiked, creamy hot chocolate.

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