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…

Kung Pow Chicken

Wow, it’s been a while! My little page, so neglected. Oh well, here we go again. Seems it goes on hiatus whenever i get side tracked by something else hehe.

I have only cooked this once before, a couple of years ago, actually i think it might of been the page’s 1st or 2nd post? I do not know why it’s taken me so long to do it again! It’s a bit fiddly getting all the steps done and prepared but it all comes together quite quickly at the end. Just read and prepare each stage of the recipe and you will not get flustered at the end when everything is going into the wok.

It’s got some unique ingredients, such as black vinegar and chilli bean paste but they can be found easily in an Asian supermarket.

Get all the little recipe steps organized in little bowls. It saves a heap of stress later!
Get all the little recipe steps organized in little bowls. It saves a heap of stress later!

Kung Pow Chicken. It has the numbing sensation from the Sichaun peppercorns and hits that spicy note with the dried chilli’s and chilli bean paste. A nice rich sauce, succulent pieces of chicken with the crunch of peanuts. It really is an amazing dish. Serve with rice.

Serving shot was a bit 'messy'.....
Serving shot was a bit ‘messy’…..

You’ll wake up the next day excited for leftovers!

This is the recipe i used.

http://www.seriouseats.com/โ€ฆ/real-deal-kung-pao-chicken-recโ€ฆ

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.

Pickled red cabbage

Thought i’d share this great pickled red cabbage recipe with you as it’s so versatile and best of all tasty. If you like the crunch of raw cabbage with the zing of vinegar and chilli, you’ll love this simple pickle.

Alright, let's go.
Alright, let’s go.

1 small whole red cabbage, (you could use half white and red for added colour effect), 1/2 cup champagne vinegar, (or use any other white vinegar), 3 tbs rice vinegar. 1 tsp black peppercorns, 1 tsp coriander seeds, 4 bay leaves, 4 tbs caster sugar, any combination of chilli’s you like. I used long green and red in previous batches and were fabulous. Halve the recipe if you need to. The cabbage will last a few weeks refrigerated.

Halve and core your cabbage and shred.

Get that tough core out.
Get that tough core out.

Add all your ingredients with 160ml of water to a saucepan and bring to the boil.

 

Bring to the boil

 

Gently pour the boiling liquid over your shredded cabbage and chilli’s and toss. Leave to cool.

How vibrant and colourful is that!
How vibrant and colourful is that!

To sterilize jars, place them on a tray and put in a 120degC oven for 20mins. Be careful when you remove them hehe.

Once cooled evenly distribute between jars. Done!

Sealed and delivered.
Sealed and delivered.

Used in last nights solo dinner mixed with some grated carrot, shredded lettuce, mayonnaise. Makes a fantastic slaw because you already have the vinegar made in the jar. I cooked the pork steak with lashings of BBQ sauce. Served with a sprinkling of celery salt. Very nice and great use of leftovers, (pulled that steak out of the freezer), leftover shells, carrots, lettuce, cheese from the other night. Ange was out, sat in front of TV and watched Man of Steel.

Leftover bonanza.
Leftover bonanza.

 

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.

Two nights with Venison

After a massive birthday weekend, (just like it should be), i got the chance to cook up something Sunday night.

After a quick visit to my sister’s house yesterday she dug up and chopped up some carrots and herbs for me, puurfect.

So French to have two wonderful sauces on the plate at once. No one was better than the other, so moreish and for a sauce junkie like me i was in heaven. The venison was quite rare, so the texture was interesting. Ange loved it though. Another of Manu’s recipe’s.

Fillet of venison with pepper sauce and pumpkin puree.

Two amazing sauces.
Two amazing sauces.

Venison night two.

Ok, going places i’ve never been before, raw vension served as tartare. When we originally bought this fillet i’d planned on making this dish and tonight’s the night. Matched with plenty of condiments i’d figured it would take my mind off the nature of what i was eating.

There was no fat what so ever in this fillet, just dark red, lean meat. I topped mine with a raw duck egg yolk. You really wouldn’t know the difference to a cooked one.
I served it with some chips hehe
The finely diced venison was mixed with some chopped cornichons, capers, eschalots and parsley.

Fries and condiments galore!
Fries and condiments galore!

I quite liked it, i ignored the texture and actually finished quite a large serving. It was nice with all the different condiments such as Tabasco, ketchup, Worcestershire, Dijon mustard, horseradish, and crushed juniper berries.

What do you think?

Venison Tartare.

Duck egg yolk, yummm.
Duck egg yolk, yummm.

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.

———————————————————————————–

1 tbs light soy sauce.

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

————————————————————————————-

Prep done :)
Prep done ๐Ÿ™‚

————————————————————————————-

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!

 

 

Onion Rings

With the previous post’s spotlight on the cheeseburger i thought it would be fitting to post the recipe for the onion rings served with it. I’ve cooked onion rings quite a few times with varying success but these were the best ones ever. A bit messy and time consuming but well worth the effort and a perfect side for that burger or steak.

————————————————————————————-

1 large onion sliced less than 1cm thick.

1 1/4 cups plain flour.

1 tsp baking powder.

1 tsp salt.

1 egg.

1 cup milk.

3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs or dry breadcrumbs.

Vegetable oil for frying.

————————————————————————————-

Heat the oil in a large saucepan or deep fryer to 185degC.

In a small bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and salt.

Dip the onion slices into the flour mixture until they are all coated; set aside. Whisk the egg and milk into the flour mixture using a fork. Dip the floured rings into the batter to coat, then place on a wire rack to drain until the batter stops dripping. The wire rack may be placed over a sheet of aluminum foil for easier clean up.

Onion rings

Spread the bread crumbs out on a plate or shallow dish. Place rings one at a time into the crumbs, and scoop the crumbs up over the ring to coat. Give it a hard tap as you remove it from the crumbs. The coating should cling very well. Repeat with remaining rings.

Deep fry the rings a few at a time until golden brown, watch they don’t burn as they will cook fast. Remove to paper towels to drain. You can keep them warm in the oven whilst cooking the following batches. Season with seaย salt, and serve.

Mouth watering ;)
Mouth watering ๐Ÿ˜‰

Original recipe from here.

Classic Cheeseburger

I’ve had a cheeseburger on the brain for a while now, it’s just something that i can’t get out of the system until i have one. For most people, and even in the past myself; to satisfy that cheeseburger craving you’d just hit McDonalds. Not tonight though.

I’ve been reading about what goes into the patty, what’s the best cheese to use, how to construct the burger. There are plenty of opinions and i’m going to have to subdue my own as well to keep to the rules that best allow me to say, ‘classic cheeseburger’. ๐Ÿ™‚

It’s actually been a lot of fun reading random articles with the comments that follow, studying pictures on Google images. I’m now educated on cheeseburgers.

This is the basic structure on how to build a classic cheeseburger which i’ve stolen from here, it’s actually a good read and the comments are also worth looking at.

5254676ddbfa3f2cba00eb4f._w.459_h.457_s.fit_

Firstly with the patty; the simplest method and most common is do not add anything to your mince other than salt and pepper. I shaped my patty gently, not working the meat too hard into a round and cleaned up the edges with my thumb. A light seasoning of salt and pepper after you’ve formed the patty, you season the other side when you flip your meat.

I’ve made some BBQ sauces recently but keeping to the objective i’ve stuck with the classic ketchup. Fortunately i can use my home made pickles though ๐Ÿ™‚

What cheese to use is another hot topic, i had some edam on hand so decided to use that, it melts well and that’s what you want here. Next time i’m going to try a Gruyere.ย IMG_9859

All the salad and condiments ready. I didn’t believe mayo was part of the classic cheeseburger so left it out.

I wanted to do a side dish for this and onion rings had also been a recent craving for me so cooked up a batch. Very messy and quite fiddly, at times i was wondering why i decided to do it. But in the end it was worth it , they were brilliant and the perfect accompaniment to my burger ๐Ÿ™‚

Onion rings

The meat should be flame grilled in my opinion, it just adds that smokiness, ย colour and char that a pan cannot give. Although i used the skillet it’s still not authentic enough, next time ๐Ÿ™‚

Arrange your burger as per template and you have a mouth watering meal to dive into.

All the work and research payed off.
All the work and research payed off.