Thursday, July 31, 2008
As always the recipe here is a guide, I will try to be as exact as I can (this serves 4)
Storecupboard Salmon Curry
1 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
oil for frying
1 tsp curry powder (or more if you like it spicier, this is the mild version for our spice averse daughter!)
1-2 sticks celery, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely diced
1/2 c frozen peas
1/2c frozen corn
2 tins red salmon (400g approx)
1 tin coconut cream (400 ml)
4 boiled eggs (I like them just past soft)
Chopped coriander or flat leaf parsley to serve
Basmati rice to serve
Fry onions and garlic in oil til soft, add curry powder and fry a little longer. Add celery, carrots, peas and corn and soften. Drain salmon and get rid of bones and skin, then flake into pan, incorporating with the veges. Pour in coconut cream and simmer for 15 or so minutes, stirring every now and then.Serve on the cooked rice with the eggs quartered on top, then sprinkled with coriander or parsley (and a lemon or lime wedge for squeezing over if you fancy!)
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Stupid me didn't read the recipe and just bunged it all in the crockpot, fortunately it didn't matter as it turned out really well, an incredibly deep flavour that developed over the next few days (I made enough to feed an army as usual!). I love food like that, so simple but so delicious.
To go with it, Granny suggested Brown Soda Bread. Another recipe I had wanted to try - and I am so glad I did! Using the buttermilk for this gives it a gorgeously light texture, it tasted amazing out of the oven, and kept well in an airtight container- I slathered it with lots of butter and honey to have with my cup of tea the next morning. I really will be making it again....and again!
Thanks Brenda for two lovely recipes!
Irish Stew (copied from Violet's Pantry with Granny's notes)There isn't really a recipe it's more a chuck in the pot thing but to enable me to share it I have tried to make it so.
Approx 1lb/500gms lamb cut into cubes (or beef)
6-8 potatoes cut up into pieces or less whatever your taste.
2 carrots roughly chopped
2 parsnips roughly chopped
1 large leek roughly sliced
2 onions chopped
oil for browning
chicken stock (2or 3 stock cubes)
Dried herbs as desired.
Salt and pepper
Brown Lamb and add onions in a large pot Stir around and add leeks leave a few mins and add about 1/2 pint water and 1 stock cube herbs and Worcester sauce. Leave to simmer until lamb is tender. Add more water as desired.
In another pot boil up potatoes carrot and parsnip in stock. Leave in stock until lamb is cooked.
When lamb is tender add cooked potatoes etc, with stock
Stir all around and keep heat low. The potatoes should be a bit mushy now
Taste and add more stock as desired.
Season to taste
Turn heat off and leave to absorb flavour
Brown Soda/Wheaten bread
A very simple very popular Irish Bread. No yeast required. Lovely warm from the oven with lots of butter. Excellent with cheese and lovely with smoked salmon or just butter and jam for an afternoon cuppa. This is the basic bread but it lends itself well to all sorts of additions as you like. It is basically a scone mixture.
8 ozs/225gms Wholemeal Flour
4 ozs/100gms Plain Flour
4ozs/100gms Porridge Oats Or 2oz/50gms Oats and 2oz/50gms bran
Approx. One pint/575mls Butter Milk
1 teasp Bicarbonate of Soda/Baking Soda
1 teasp sugar or honey
1 teasp. salt
Greased and floured round sandwich tin
Oven temp 350F 180.C Gas 4
In a large bowl mix together all the dry ingredients.
Cut the butter into small pieces and rub through.
Add enough buttermilk to form a soft but easily handled dough. It should not be runny.
Knead lightly and quickly into a round and place in prepared tin.
(It is essential you use light hands)
Cut a deep cross in the bread.
Sprinkle with oats if desired
Bake for approx 40 Minutes
Tastes great straight from the oven so don't hold back
Notes: If you do not have or cannot get Buttermilk add a couple of tablespoons of lemon juice or vinegar to ordinary milk and leave for ten minutes or so. Cover with a tea towel when it comes out of the oven to stop the crust getting too hard
Sunday, July 27, 2008
My most popular version is banana with either blueberry, strawberry or raspberry. I am still making them with frozen berries, as they make a great stop gap for Carys when she is whinging for dinner and it isn't quite ready!
I also make up iced chocolate or coffee and pop them into the iceblock containers for the adults as something to cool down with. My recipe for that particular concoction is here
Friday, July 25, 2008
A Ham or Bacon Hock (or bacon bones)
Soup mix (barley, split peas, red lentils, alphabet pasta)
Inevitably, quantities and ingredients vary, which is where the excitement starts really! Tonights soup was heavy on the pumpkin, as they are ridiculously cheap at the moment, and not only did it make it go alot further, my family actually prefer it to be overly pumpkin. I didn't have a leek or capsicum, so a couple of onions were tossed in instead.
The basic method is to boil the ham/bacon hock up in plenty of water with the soup mix for a good hour or so, take the bone out of the water (and skim off any icky bits on the top), and get all the meat off it. Return the meat to the stock along with all the other veges (which you have dutifully chopped up while waiting for the stock to develop!). Boil this for at least another 30 mins (to be fair, how much longer after that is up to you- this not being a purist recipe, I am hardly going to preach about achieving perfection here!!!!:).
I quite enjoy the chopping endeavour, but some days I am somewhat ambivalent about hacking through lots of pumpkin, so I microwave the whole pumpkin for around 10 mins and the knife just glides through, you can scoop out the seeds and then de-skin it and chop it in no time at all.
If I am feeling really enthusiastic everything is cut into lovely small dice, or I will grate the carrots and parsnips, but usually it is haphazardly cut into irregular chunks! On those days it is known as the 'rustic' version!
To serve with this I made the cheese scone recipe from here - this time shaping and baking it in a round cake tin and serving them as wedges. I got that idea from making Rhyley's Granny's soda bread, and it is a nifty way to cook and serve savoury scones that I think I will keep up!
Thursday, July 24, 2008
Smoked Salmon and Caper Pasta
Pop your water onto boil for the spaghetti. While you are waiting for that, chop some red onion (or spring onion or leek, in this one I used leek, it is lovely in it!) and some garlic and pop them into a hot pan with oil, frying until soft. Add in a tablespoon (or two!) of capers and briefly fry. Chop in about 200g of smoked salmon, then add in 1/4c white wine. (Put your spaghetti into the pot to cook!) Add in a tin of evaporated milk or a tin minus 1/4 c and top the liquid up with cream for a richer sauce. I usually let this simmer for a few minutes and thicken it with a little bit of cornflour and water mixed together so that it coats the spaghetti a little better. Chop in some fresh herbs just before serving, dill, basil, flat leaf parsley all work well. When the pasta has cooked, drain it and toss it through the sauce, then serve with a wedge of lemon for squeezing over the pasta.
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
I have been on the look out for a friand tin for some time, I never seem to be able to lay my hands on one. My mother happened upon some individual friand tins on her recent visit to Wellington (from where else, Moore Wilson!) and managed to bring home 12 of them. As she was unpacking her spoils after her trip I seized upon them, and the poor woman didn't have a chance. I assured her I would have them trialled and back to her ASAP- after all this time I knew it wouldn't be long before those lonely egg whites would be mixed together with lots of almonds and butter for a fabulous afternoon treat!
I found the recipe for these on www.stuff.co.nz - a brief look on the internet showed them to all be much of a muchness, and this recipe looked like a good place to start. This one is for Lemon Friands, but I plopped a few frozen blueberries and raspberries on top of each one as well, which sunk to the bottom while cooking and made a nice foil for the richness of the 'cake'. I should probably have adjusted the cooking time as I think they should probably have had a little longer, but they were perfectly acceptable for a first attempt. The top was wonderfully chewy yet crunchy and one simply wasn't enough......two was perfect! These were ridiculously easy to make, they would make a fabulous morning tea 'plate' as they are just that level better than a muffin. I can't wait to try a few variations!
200g icing sugar
50g plain flour
120g ground almonds
Zest of 2 lemons
1/2 tsp lemon essence
5 egg whites
Extra icing sugar
Heat oven to 180deg. Lightly grease friand moulds (or muffin tins).
Melt the butter then set it aside to cool. Place butter, sifted icing sugar, flour, salt, ground almonds, lemon zest and essence together in a mixing bowl. Lightly beat the egg whites until frothy and then stir into the other ingredients until combined - do not overmix.
Spoon into greased friand moulds and bake for 25-30 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Allow to stand for five minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.
To serve, dust with icing sugar and accompany with a spoon of whipped cream and a little seasonal fruit.
Sunday, July 20, 2008
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1teaspoon baking powder
Special equipment: 2 (each 8-inch diameter) layer tins with removable bases, buttered
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Put all the cake ingredients: flour, sugar, baking powder and soda, cocoa, butter, eggs, vanilla, and sour cream into a food processor and process until you have a smooth, thick batter. If you want to go the long way around, just mix the flour, sugar and leavening agents in a large bowl and beat in the soft butter until you have a combined and creamy mixture. Now whisk together the cocoa, sour cream, vanilla, and eggs and beat this into your bowl of mixture.
Divide this batter, using a rubber spatula to help you scrape and spread, into the prepared tins and bake until a cake tester comes out clean, which should be about 35 minutes, but it is wise to start checking at 25 minutes. Also, it might make sense to switch the 2 cakes around in the oven halfway through cooking time. Remove the cakes, in their tins, to a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes before turning out of their tins. Don't worry about any cracks as they will easily be covered by the frosting later.
To make this icing, melt the chocolate and butter in a good-sized bowl either in the microwave or suspended over a pan of simmering water. Go slowly either way: you don't want any burning or seizing.
While the chocolate and butter is cooling a little, sieve the confectioners' sugar into another bowl. Or, easier still, put the icing sugar into the food processor and blitz to remove lumps.
Add the corn syrup to the cooled chocolate mixture, followed by the sour cream and vanilla and then when all this is combined whisk in the sieved confectioners' sugar. Or just pour this mixture down the funnel of the food processor onto the powdered sugar, with the motor running.
You may need to add a little boiling water, say a teaspoon or so, or indeed some more confectioners' sugar, depending on whether you need the frosting to be thiner or thicker. It should be liquid enough to coat easily, but thick enough not to drip off.
Choose your cake stand or plate and cut 4 strips of baking parchment to form a square and sit 1 of the cakes, uppermost (i.e. slightly domed) side down.
Spoon about 1/3 of the frosting onto the center of the cake-half and spread with a knife or spatula until you cover the top of it evenly. Sit the other cake on top, normal way up, pressing gently to sandwich the 2 together. Spoon another 1/3 of the frosting onto the top of the cake and spread it in a swirly, textured way (though you can go for a smooth finish if you prefer, and have the patience). Spread the sides of the cake with icing and leave a few minutes until set, then carefully pull away the paper strips.
Friday, July 18, 2008
Pete’s Lemon Pickle
2 whole lemons, chopped and pips removed
5 large onions, roughly chopped
4 cups white vinegar
1 cup lemon juice
3 tsp salt
5 cups sugar
1 tsp turmeric
4 tsp horseradish
finely grated rind of 2 lemons
5-6 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tsp ground ginger
Puree lemons and onions with some of the vinegar until very smooth. Place in a large non-corrosive pot with all other ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for about 45 minutes until reduced to a spoonable consistency. Bottle while hot in sterilised jars.
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
25 g cold butter, grated
2 tbsp fresh flat leaf parsley and chives, chopped
1 tbsp whole grain mustard
milk to combine
Put all ingredients in bowl and work butter through flour. With a knife mix milk in until you have a fairly firm dough, don’t overwork. Roll into walnut sized balls and drop into stew about ½ an hour before serving. They should swell up to about twice the size.
Monday, July 14, 2008
Saturday, July 12, 2008
It was lovely to share some good food and conversation with our guest!
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Cut the fat or rind off the chops, and then bash them briefly but brutally with a rolling pin between 2 pieces of cling film/plastic wrap to make them thinner.
Heat the oil in a pan, and then cook the chops over a moderately-high heat for about 5 minutes a side. Remove them to a warmed plate.
Pour the cider into the pan, still over the heat, to deglaze the pan. Let it bubble away for a minute or so then add the mustard and stir in the cream. Let the sauce continue cooking for a few minutes before pouring over each plated pork chop. If you're having gnocchi with, make sure you turn them in the pan to absorb any spare juices before adding them to your plates.
Monday, July 7, 2008
I recently had my nephews to stay so we hauled out the waffle maker and the maple syrup, then popped some frozen strawberries into a bowl with some vanilla sugar and gave them a good burst in the microwave. They turned into 'melted' strawberries (as my daughter has coined them), not quite a syrup, but not quite a conserve either! They were delicious with the crispy waffles and provided something a little more special for breakfast.
For the waffle recipe I used one from The Best of Annabel Langbein: Great Food For Busy Lives (revised and expanded edition) which I have just bought and have started a list of all the lovely things in it I would like to make!
Old Fashioned Waffles
2 cups milk
1 tsp salt
3 eggs separated
2 1/4 c flour
3 tsp baking powder
100g butter, melted
Beat together milk, salt and egg yolks, mix flour and baking powder. Once combined, add the melted butter and beat until smooth. Leave to stand about 2 hours. Beat egg whites until stiff then fold into mix. Pour about 3/4 c of mix onto hot buttered waffle iron and close. Cook until golden brown. Makes 8-10 waffles.
Saturday, July 5, 2008
The recipe comes from an old book of mine called Espresso: culture and cuisine (by Karl Petzke and Sara Slavin), which has a number of recipes in it that I have relied on over the years and keep revisiting such as Espresso syrup, Espresso and Hazelnut Cheesecake and Biscotti with toasted espresso beans.
Espresso Crème Brûlée
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 c milk
1/4 caster sugar
1/2 c brewed espresso
3 whole eggs
3 egg yolks
1/2c demerara sugar (or white sugar)
2 tbsp finely ground espresso
Preheat oven to 150C (300F). In a medium saucepan, combine the cream, milk, sugar and brewed espresso. Place over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes, or until war, do not let mixture boil. Remove from heat. In a medium bowl, beat together eggs and egg yolks. Gradually stir or whisk the beaten eggs into the heated mixture, then cook over a medium heat stirring constantly.
Pour the mixture into 8 150 ml (6 ounce) custard cups and place the cups in a shallow baking dish. Add water to the dish to halfway up the sides of the cups. Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until custards are set in the centre. Remove from baking dish and let sit for 1 hour.
Sprinkle sugar over top of each custard. Apply heat (with blow torch, or put under a hot grill) until sugar begins to melt being careful not to let it burn. It should caramelise and form a liquid, sprinkle on a little espresso grounds, while the sugar is still warm. Leave for a few minutes for the sugar to harden so you have a toffee 'shell' on top of the custard before serving.