Smoked salmon pappadum stack

Had this light meal the other night. Just using up a few odd items in the fridge and pantry.

Savoury and salty pappadums are a real treat here and go lovely with the variety of textures and flavours between them. I sprinkle a bit of sumac for something extra. The recipe is linked below. Just chop and change salad ingredients with what you have although i would say the avocado is essential! Dill always goes great with smoked salmon and so nice to go outside and clip some from the garden. You could also use some capers too!

Smoked salmon pappadum stack

Lots of goodness inside.

 

Red curry of prawns and potato

I’ve made this curry a few times now and it’s exceptional. It’s a one wok dish too!

The herbs really highlight this red curry, stirred through just before serving, add to that the fresh, fiery chilli thrown in at the beginning of the cooking process? It lingers wonderfully on the pallet.

The recipe says to cook the potatoes for about 10minutes until soft but i’ve found each time that it takes longer. Put a lid on the wok or saucepan so the sauce doesn’t evaporate and cook the potatoes until soft when pricked with a sharp knife. At that point add the prawns to cook for the final couple of minutes. I also added shredded kaffir lime leaves because they’re just so fantastic.

Don’t forget to serve in warmed bowls, you want that curry to stay hot, tastes so much better that way!

That time is upon us!

And if you have leftovers, as with most curries, they’re often better the next day as was the case here.

Red curry of prawns and potato.

 

A couple of corn recipes

The famous corn on the cob; we’ll buy them for a BBQ first and foremost. Roasted over the coals until the kernel’s start popping, served with lashings of butter. Now, don’t get me wrong, i love them served this way, but it had me thinking when Ange bought some for me to use. Time for something different?
When i need some ideas or recipes i always go to www.taste.com.au.

First night we tried this Mexican corn on the cob, a wonderful looking and sounding side dish. Smoked paprika is mixed with some mayonnaise, a fiery spice mix to sprinkle over the cooked corn, grated Parmesan and a squeeze of lime. Now, what would go with this? I’m a bit hot on chicken schnitzels at the moment and i figured they would go nicely with the mayonnaise.

It was a sensational combination, something completely different for that mid week meal. Pretty simple too. You could buy your schnitzel if you didn’t want to make one, but from experience a made one? Can’t beat it.

Mexican corn on the cob.

Just a brilliant new way of serving corn.
Just a brilliant new way of serving corn.

The next night was tuna and corn quesadillas. Another simple yet different meal. Instead of tinned corn i just microwaved our two remaining cobs for 4 minutes and stripped off the kernels.
You’ve seen me post up quesadillas many times in the past, (on Instagram, Facebook, @mejulesok), a great way to use up any left overs but also giving you a simple, easy dinner and here is no exception.

Tuna and corn quesadillas.

Firstly make your mixture for the filling.

Fast and easy mixture done. Time for cook!
Fast and easy mixture done. Time for cook!

Place your tortilla in the pan and top with the mixtures and shredded cheese. Place remaining tortilla on top and cook until golden, oozing and crisp.

Clean and simple cooking.
Clean and simple cooking.

Served here simple chips and salad.

Close up! ;)

Close up! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Think outside the box with your favourite ingredients and mold them to fit into the cuisine or combination of your liking. You’ll be surprised. ๐Ÿ™‚

Salmon Frittata

I’ve had this one circulating in my mind for a while. We bought some salmon pate, (comes in a tube), a while ago and gave me an idea to do a multiple types of salmon frittata.

Hot smoked, normal smoked salmon plus the salmon pate would adorn this creation. I’d incorporate some classic ingredients that go with it such as dill and capers.

Dice up a zucchini and soften in a 20cm frying pan. Meanwhile, whisk up 7 eggs with 1/4 cup of milk, season with salt and pepper.
Break up the hot smoked salmon into chunks and when the zucchini is softened add the hot smoked salmon, chopped dill, parsley and some salted capers that have been rinsed and drained. Add the egg mixture and then leave on medium low for about 10 minutes. In a separate pan crisp up the salmon skin in a little oil.

Preheat the grill to high. After 10 minutes the bottom will have set now just need the top to set and brown. Place under the grill for 2-3 minutes, watching so that it does not burn. Once the top has set and has reached a nice brown colour, remove and invert onto a plate and then invert again onto serving board.

Sprinkle extra capers on top and fold the smoked salmon over the top also. Squeeze little lines of the salmon pate and finally add the crispy skin.

It was a pretty fabulous dish. Lovely contrasts of salmon flavour and texture. From the salty, warm hot smoked, creamy pate and then the soft and luscious smoked salmon sitting on top. Oh and some nice crunch from the skin. In the back ground you have those tart capers and hints of dill. Not bad mang.

Served here with chips and simple salad leaves ๐Ÿ˜‰

Little messy ;)
Little messy ๐Ÿ˜‰

Probably best to cut the slices and then add the toppings! Oh well…

Mussels with garlic, chilli and kale

I posted this to Instagram the other night and have been wanting to share this recipe and dish with you all.

You’ve heard me say it many times how good mussels are. Not only are they good for you, they’re tasty, (some will disagree!), cheap and sustainable, we don’t use them enough.

It seems the simpler the recipe the better for these guys.

This one blew my socks off, so simple but a flavour that will have you nodding your head in approval.

Heat a tbs of oil in a wok or large saucepan over high heat. Add 3 chopped garlic cloves and chilli’s, (depending on how spicy you like it you can reduce the chilli) and cook for a couple minutes until fragrant. Add 250ml vegetable stock and bring to the boil, reduce heat to medium and simmer for 3 minutes.

Add 1kg cleaned mussels and a large handful of kale, removing the leaves from the tough stems. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, stirring a couple of times to make sure the kale is submerged in the stock. Before serving, stir through 1/4 cup chopped parsley.

Pour into a large, warmed bowl. This is important as you want to keep the stock hot. Spoon onto warmed plates and devour.

Mussels and stock

 

Served with chips here but you could also just eat with fresh, crusty bread.

Mussels and chips

The kale really gave the stock an extra depth of flavour and with the chilli also letting its presence felt this was sensational, i couldn’t stop spooning for more soup.

You could even remove the mussels from their shells and serve as a small soup for a starter.

Forgive the dodgy phone photos! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Mussels with garlic, chilli and kale.

Creamy mustard and sage sauce

Whipped out the German cookbook tonight for a bit of a change in scenery. Ange is mad on mustard at the moment so this one caught my eye with a marvelous creamy mustard and sage sauce. It would work well with steak too and you could also substitute chips for mash or roast potatoes.

Chicken breast was cut into strips then fried in olive oil and butter until golden. I think i overcooked mine slightly waiting for the colour to grab me.

Prep for this is quite simple. If you've got a few of the ingredients in the fridge even better.
Prep for this is quite simple. If you’ve got a few of the ingredients in the fridge even better.

Meanwhile for the sauce heat up 200ml cream with 2 tbs of chicken stock, don’t boil. Add in 3 tbs of wholegrain mustard, 1 tbs Dijon mustard, 1 tbs freshly chopped sage and juice of 1/2 lime, stirring to combine. Just keep that warm while you continue the chicken. There’s plenty of sauce for leftovers too!

For the kale, my simple way that Rick Stein does it is prepare it by taking it off the stalk, rip into pieces and then place into a large saucepan with a little water in the bottom, add some salt and then continue to stir until it wilts, maybe a couple of minutes.

Serve on warmed plates and enjoy the sauce.

Sauce junkie heaven.
Sauce junkie heaven.

As i said on Instagram, i was just dunking whole chips into the sauce afterwards, so addictive.

It’s worth making this meal just for the sauce if this widens your hungry eyes.

Seafood Sunday

Seafood Sunday is quite a common thing for us. A chance to serve up a few small dishes throughout the afternoon and evening. All 3 of these dishes were amazing and all i’d never cooked before. The scallops one though was the knockout, wow, so simple but so gooood ๐Ÿ™‚
Can you believe it? There’s no oysters for once!

Crispy goodness :)
Crispy goodness ๐Ÿ™‚

Whitebait fries with OLD BAYยฎ Seasoning.
I haven’t made these for a couple of years now and after having these i don’t know why? So crispy, lots of taste and with the addition of Old Bay and lemon they were superb.

Recipe based off of this one, i just replaced the cayenne with Old Bay and then additional Old Bay on serving.

Whitebait fries recipe.

Less is more with these delicious plates of lush.
Less is more with these delicious plates of lush.

I still had some leek and tarragon from my parents garden and didn’t want ย them to go to waste. What a way to serve it. From Manu Feildel‘s cookbook, French Bistro. This simple yet beautiful dish had us licking each empty shell for just a little bit more sauce. This one will definitely be going on our regular menu.

And finally, pippi’s with celery and peas.

I’d been watching Good Chef Bad Chef in the morning while looking for something to cook, at first Adrian was cooking lobster and i was certain that was what i was going to do. Then Zoe cooked these yummy clams and when cost came into consideration this one got the nod. I’d been eyeing off pippi’s for quite a while and that helped sway my decision also.

Wonderful broth, every pippi opened and eaten and served with some toasted sourdough. The inclusion of the celery was fantastic.

Recipe for Clams with celery and peas.

I've got my eyes on the sauce at the bottom, hehe.
I’ve got my eyes on the sauce at the bottom, hehe.

You know, all that seafood cost us $20. With a few extra groceries it’s an affordable afternoon of fantastic seafood. Accompanied by a cold crisp Riesling? Oh yeah ๐Ÿ™‚

Twice cooked beans with pork and XO sauce

An old favourite of mine with simple ingredients, just a little prep and a few minutes cooking time. Perfect for that week night dinner where you’re short on time but still wanting a tasty meal. If you’ve got some pork mince sitting in the freezer you get the added bonus of a cheap meal.

I recommend buying some dried Shiitake and black fungus, also known as wood ear or cloud ear mushrooms. Soaked in a little boiling water they can bulk out a meal and add that little extra flavour and texture, great in stir fries like this. Just a packet of each costing a few bucks will last you a long time ๐Ÿ™‚

Serves 2.

Dried Shiitake and Black Fungus mushrooms.

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1 tbs light soy sauce.

4 of each, dried Shiitake and Black fungus mushrooms, chopped, (about 10grams dried).

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Prep done :)
Prep done ๐Ÿ™‚

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Combine the soy sauces, rice wine, sugar, cornflour and pork in a bowl, then set aside for 15 minutes to marinate.

Blanch beans in a saucepan of boiling salted water for 1 minute. Drain and pat dry (it is essential beans are completely dry before frying).

Heat the oil in a wok over high heat. Stir-fry the beans for 2-3 minutes until tender. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel.

Twice cooked beans

Add the garlic and chilli to the wok, and stir-fry for 30 seconds over high heat until fragrant. Add the pork mixture to the wok and stir-fry for a further 3-4 minutes until cooked through. Add the XO sauce and stir to combine. When just about done stir through the beans to warm through and serve on warmed plates with extra XO sauce.

Twice cooked beans with pork & XO sauce————————————————————————————-

A very smooth dish, soft pork mince, with crunchy beans. XO sauce gives it a bit of spice along with the chilli. This is a nice recipe to bring out and surprise your friends or family with. Something different that will introduce you to new flavours! After that the XO sauce will become a fridge favourite, it definitely is here ๐Ÿ™‚

This original recipe is from taste.com.au. Twice cooked beans with pork and XO sauce.

๐Ÿ™‚

Another incarnation from another cook!
Another incarnation from another cook!

 

 

Stir Fried Tofu

I always wonder what you guys must think when you see me post another tofu recipe? I expect most would just scroll down or navigate elsewhere and in a way i can understand, hehe, i used to be the same way. But lately, tofu’s just doing something for me. Discovering how it’s best used, what it goes with, how to cook it etc.

I chose this recipe on the weekend, it was the last of 3 meals i had picked out to start the week. At times i was like, ‘ahh, i’ll do something else’, but i’ve learnt to stick with the choices you made because in most instances they’ve been pretty amazing. This dish may sound a bit ‘boring’, but believe me it will surprise you, i know it did me ๐Ÿ™‚

Stir fried tofu with bean sprouts and pak choy.

Have you ever removed the roots from a whole bag of bean sprouts? I doubt many will say they have, but now i can. Recipe recommended that you remove the roots. When i first tipped the bag out on to the board i’m like, ‘you’ve got to be kidding me’. Anyway, they won’t remove themselves so i got stuck into it. Took about 15 minutes, but i can understand why you’d want them removed, all those stringy bits in your stir fry, how ugly! ๐Ÿ™‚

Rooted ;)
Rooted ๐Ÿ˜‰

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Serves 4

300g firm tofu. I used medium and worked fine.

250g bean sprouts.

100g pak choy.

1 tbs sesame oil.

1 tbs sunflower or vegetable oil.

2 tsp granulated chicken stock.

Salt and pepper.

Coarsely ground white sesame seeds to serve.

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Drain the tofu and then wrap it in kitchen towel to remove excess water. Replace the towel 15 minutes later and then rest for another 15 minutes.

Cut the pak choy between the stem and the leaf, slice the stem length ways into about 2 cm strips. Chop leaves horizontally into pieces. They will wilt a bit during cooking so don’t cut them too small.

Heat the sesame oil in a large frying pan. Break up the tofu by hand and fry for about 5 minutes on medium-high heat, tossing the tofu to coat in sesame oil. Try to toss it, that way you won’t mash it up by using utensils. When it’s really sizzling remove from pan and into a dish.

Add the sunflower oil to the frying pan and heat, add the pak choy and then the bean sprouts. Return tofu to the pan, mix gently with the vegetables and season with the chicken stock powder and salt and pepper.

IMG_9842

Cook for a few more minutes tossing to coat and let stock powder dissolve into the cooking juices. Once pak choy is bright green and crunchy, remove and serve with a sprinkling of sesame seeds.

IMG_9847————————————————————————————-

When i tried the pak choy to see if it was cooked the taste really surprised me, the slight hint of sesame oil with a salty undertone created by the chicken stock. Perfect crunch of the pak choy and bean sprouts along side the silky soft tofu, finished off with nutty sesame sprinkles justified my faith in this dish.

The ingredients for this meal were cheap as chips so for like $10 you’ve got a tasty Japanese meal for 4.

 

 

XO prawns and snow peas

With a handful of ingredients, minimal prep and hardly any cooking time this recipe was perfect for a hot and windy Monday.

I was eager to get XO sauce back on the menu. Stir fried withย juicy prawns and crunchy snow peas this simple dish would have ample flavour, spice and texture. Fabulous XO prawns tonight!

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Serves 2.

12 large green prawns, peeled, deveined.

1 tsp peanut oil.

80g snow peas, trimmed, sliced in half on an angle.

1tbs XO sauce, (i use Lee Kum Kee).

1/2 tsp cornflour, combined with 2 tbs of chicken stock.

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The wine wasn't part of the recipe ;)
The wine wasn’t part of the recipe ๐Ÿ˜‰

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Butterfly the prawns by cutting through the back about halfway through and pressing open with the flat side of a knife.

Heat a wok over high heat and drizzle the oil around the edge. Add prawns, season with a pinch of salt and stir-fry for about 1 minute or until prawns start to turn pink.

Add the snow peas and stir-fry for a further minute. Add XO sauce and toss through for a further minute or until the prawns are just cooked and snow peas are tender but still crunchy.

Drizzle over the cornflour mixture, a little at a time, while tossing to combine for a final 30 seconds. Transfer to warmed plates and serve immediately.

IMG_9833————————————————————————————-

Get all your prep done, get that wok smoking and off you go, tossing, turning, scraping, ahhh the smell as each ingredient is added! Luckily it only takes a few minutes cook, it’s torture.

Beautiful meal, the prawns were succulent, the rich, salty, spicy sauce with crunchy snow peas. ย Ange was pretty wrapped, she’s not usually one for the rich, salty dishes but she was thumbs up in this case.

You could use any greens really, whatever you have available, just cut them into appropriate sizes. XO sauce is quite versatile so having a tub in the fridge can be used with a variety of ingredients!

This recipe was from delicious magazine 131