Eaten as soon as they’re ready, crisp oven chips and golden butternut fritters make for a satisfying impromptu feast

We sit on high stools by the hob, lowering batter-dipped vegetables into bubbling oil, eating them as they emerge, hot and crackling from the pan. There are tangles of grated celeriac threaded with pumpkin and parsley, a pesto sauce for dipping and dish of sea salt. We eat (or perhaps I should say “wolf”) our parcels as each becomes ready, bobbing to the surface, the grated vegetables turned into crisp, unruly fritters.

Another day, we eat chips cooked in the oven, each long, fat finger of potato in a coat of semolina – I use fine polenta – and Lebanese za’atar with its notes of dried wild thyme, sesame and oregano. As they rustle on to our plates, there is a tiny bowl of garlic sauce, a dip of red pepper, olive oil and egg at their side. I make it in the style of mayonnaise, adding the oil drip by emerald green drip, into a purée of grilled red peppers, egg yolk and a fat, juicy clove of chalk-white garlic.

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