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    Wednesday, November 14, 2018

    Coconut Chicken Curry

    When I first made this curry, I used Curry Powder, but this week I used a Curry Paste
    I think it was a more exciting flavour
    Also I rubbed the chicken thighs with the paste and roasted them
    Then pulled the meat apart. Great flavour on the chicken
    But if you follow the recipe below It becomes a very quick curry
    A Curry in a Hurry in fact.
    Very popular with the kids and the Adults
    I found this recipe on the Epicurious Site
    This feeds six

    1 medium onion roughly chopped
    1 tablespoon oil
    1 kilo chicken boneless, skinless  thighs chopped
    2 Sachets of Asian Gourmet Curry Paste… the Vietnamese Flavour
    1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
    1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    2 tablespoons virgin coconut or vegetable oil (plus 2 teaspoons; optional)

    2 x 400 ml cans coconut milk (preferably full-fat)
    1 (2 1/2") piece ginger, peeled and rough chopped
    4 garlic cloves, peeled
    1/4 cup raw cashews, chopped (optional)
    1 1/2 teaspoons yellow and/or black mustard seeds (optional)
    1 packet baby spinach
    Cilantro leaves with tender stems and cooked rice or naan (Indian flatbread; for serving)

    Toss chicken with curry paste, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl.
    Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet (at least 12" in diameter) over medium-high.
    Add onion and cook, stirring, until softened, about 2 minutes.
    add 1 sachet of curry paste, stir
    and cook for another couple of minutes remove and set aside
    Add more oil and saute chicken till brown
    You may need to do it in batches
    Meanwhile Purée coconut milk, ginger, and garlic in a blender until very smooth.

    Add coconut milk mixture and cooked onion to the chicken in the pan
    and cook, tossing occasionally, until chicken is cooked through and sauce has thickened, 7-10 minutes.
    Add spinach to pan sprinkle with salt and pepper
    and blend in till spinach is wilted. about a minute or two
    Meanwhile, if using, heat 2 tsp. oil in a small skillet over medium.
    Add cashews and mustard seeds and cook, stirring, until fragrant and lightly browned, 2–3 minutes.
     Immediately transfer nut mixture including the oil to a small bowl.

    Serve the Curry over rice
    Garnish with Cashews, Coriander and Red Pepper
     Delicious, Pretty and So so simple

    Friday, November 09, 2018

    Easy Butter Chicken

    I have never made Butter Chicken. 
    Last week my Granddaughter requested it for dinner
    so I Surfed the Net and found quite a few recipes, naturally
    I decided to use the BBC Good Food idea, 
    with a couple of changes, to suit what I had in the cupboard
    It was very popular, with the kids…Second and third helpings in fact
    I didn’t add chilli as I was cooking for kids, but if you feel the need…
    Finely chop and saute a red chilli with the garlic and ginger

    If you want greens I suggest some wilted spinach on the side
    Cooks hint
    Don’t forget when you wilt the spinach, sauté  in a little butter with garlic, seasoned 
    with S & P

    Spinach really needs that extra touch

    So back to the Butter Chicken 
    You will need

    25 gms Butter
    1 red onion chopped
    Sea Salt and Freshly ground Black Pepper
    3 tablespoons Butter Chicken Curry Paste
    3 large chicken Breasts cut into pieces
    tablespoon butter and 1 tablespoon Rice Bran oil

    3 cloves garlic peeled and crushed
    1 Tablespoon grated ginger
    2 whole tomatoes chopped
    Sea salt and freshly Grated Black pepper
    500g Passata or 1 400 gms can chopped tomatoes blitzed
    100 mls double cream

    Handful coriander chopped, stems and leaves 
    Cooked Rice to serve

    Marinate the chicken piece in the curry paste, for at least an hour
    Then when ready 

    Heat butter in a large pan, 
    Over medium heat, add onion, season with salt and pepper and sauté till softened
    Meanwhile in another pan over high heat
    Add More butter and a tablespoon of Rice Bran oil
    Brown chicken pieces
    Don’t crowd the pan so you will need to cook in batches
    You will also need to add more cooking fat as you go
    Add to onion mix

    Add another tablespoon of butter
    Add garlic, ginger and chopped fresh tomatoes
    Season with S & P
    Saute till soft
    Add to chicken and onion
     Add the Passata/Canned Tomatoes
    Stir and bring to a simmer
    Simmer gently, uncovered for about 20 minutes, till chicken is tender
    Taste and adjust season if needed 

    Just before serving add cream and chopped coriander
    Serve over cooked rice 
    With a leaf or two of coriander for presentation

    It was suggested that you add 2 tablespoons Cashew Butter with the cream
    I didn't have any but it sounds like a tasty idea
    And as usual the youngest Members of the Family don't give a damn

    Wednesday, October 24, 2018

    Beef and Noodle Salad - Vietnamese Style

    We have a new BBQ and already it has been well used
    A beautiful piece of Scotch Filet was cooked up in the weekend and of course
    there were leftovers
    Also we have the garden
    In fact to prove how fresh our cabbage is
    It still has little slugs living in it
    In amongst that Wilderness, there are loads of Cabbages and Kale
    To be honest, I’m not that wrapped in Kale but it amazing what butter and garlic will do
    I digress
    So back to the Beef. 
    We had mint, coriander  and chilies in the Fridge
    A Vietnamese Beef Salad came to mind
    What I love about this style of salads is the flavour, the freshness the crispness
    All the food groups almost

    If you wish to start from Fresh
    This will feed 4-5

    600 gms scotch Filet
    A little oil
    Sea salt and ground black pepper

    3 spring onions chopped
    1 red chilli deseeded and chopped
    2 cloves garlic chopped finely
    6 tablespoons lime juice
    6 tablespoons fish sauce
    4 tablespoons soft brown sugar. I used coconut sugar
    2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
    2 tablespoons grated ginger

    Rice or wheat noodle 50 gms per person

    Cook  noodles according to manufacturers instruction
    Drain, run under cold water and set aside
    At this stage with kitchen scissors, cut the noodle into pieces easy to pick up

    2 carrots grated
    1/2 small cabbage
    1/2 telegraph cucumber de-seeded and finely sliced
    1/2 yellow pepper sliced
    1/2 red pepper sliced
    Handful of coriander leaves roughly chopped
    Handful mint Leaves roughly chopped

    Rub beef with a little oil and season well with salt and pepper
    Cook to desired doneness
    Preferably rare (not blue )
    Slice across the grain and set aside
    To make dressing
    Place all ingredients in a jar with a screw top lid
    Shake well

    To Assemble
    Place all vege into a large bowl
    Place cooked and drained noodles on top
    Then the beef

    Drizzle the dressing over
    Then get your hands in and toss it all well
    That's the fun bit
    Just what the Doctor ordered...Fresh, Crisp, Delicious

    Monday, October 22, 2018

    Miss Cleo's Favourite Waffles

    This weekend the Family bought a Waffle Iron. 
    One member of the Family is mad on them
    Our Miss Cleo of Course
    Cleo’s Best Waffle Mixture

    2 cups all purpose flour
    1 teaspoon salt
    4 teaspoons baking powder
    2 tablespoons white sugar
    2 eggs
    1 1/2 cups warm milk
    1/3 Cup (76 gms) butter
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

    In a large bowl mix together flour, salt, baking powder and sugar
    Warm milk with butter to just melt it

    Pre heat waffle iron

    In another bowl beat the eggs, stir in milk and butter
    Add vanilla
    Pour this milk mixture into dry ingredients

    Stir well till combined

    Ladle the batter into preheated waffle iron
    Cook waffles until golden and crisp

    Personally I just like butter on them
    But Miss Cleo loves that cream and maple syrup

    Maybe its a kid thing?
    Finished product excellent
     We found this recipe of the allrecipes website

    Friday, September 14, 2018

    Savoury Muffins

     A morning tea Treat 
    Savoury Muffins
     We are having a Garage Sale today

    I’m not really good on the selling bit, so I am in the kitchen
    Now…I’m good at that
    The family needs to be fed.
    Some Savoury Muffins seemed to fit the bill
    Because of few food issues in the house… these are dairy free
    BUT I just had to have a dob of butter on them to consume
    Nothing really replaces it, I'm afraid, Dairy Issues or not
    So you need
    For the Batter
    1 ½ cups  Self Raising Flour
    4 eggs
    ½ cup (125ml) water
    ¼ cup (60ml) oil of your choice, I used Rice Bran

    I tbs chopped basil
    Salt and Pepper to taste

    I tablespoon oil

    I red onion peeled and chopped
    3 rashers bacon chopped
    Preheat your oven to 200°C (180°C fan forced)
    Grease or line a 12 cup muffin tray

    Chop Bacon and Onion and
    Season with a little Sea Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper
    Sauté till soft in oil
    Place in a sieve to drain off any excess oil
     In a large bowl combine flour, water, oil and eggs,
    Mix well until all ingredients are well combined
    Fold in Savoury filling into the batter.
    Spoon the mixture into muffin tray
    and set to bake for 20-25 minutes.
    Check after 20 minutes
    Mine took 25
    Rest for 5 minutes in tray and cool on a wire rack,
    Serve warm
    Went down a real treat

    Wednesday, August 22, 2018

    Lamb and Beer Curry

    I found this excellent curry recipe in the website
    This recipe called for potatoes but one member of the family, is not eating food from the nightshade family for a month or so, therefore I used sweet potato (kumara) instead
    It worked well
    Pretty too
    Perfect for a winter night
    2 tablespoons rice bran oil
    1 red onion, sliced
    2.5 cm piece of fresh ginger, chopped
    3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
    1 tsp chopped fresh turmeric
    1 red chili, finely sliced
    1 tsp cardamom seeds
    1 tbs finely chopped lemon grass, outer Leaves removed
    2 tbsp red curry paste
    700g  lamb leg, no bone, cut into 4 cm chunks
    125g  plain yoghurt
    330ml bottle of 8% ale
    3 potatoes, or sweet potatoes peeled and each cut into six pieces
    1 large handful fresh coriander (cilantro), chopped
    16 sugar snap peas, topped and tailed
    16 green beans, topped and tailed

    Heat the oven to 170°C
    Blanch the prepared peas and beans, in boiling salted water, for just a minute
    Drain and set aside
    Heat the oil in a flameproof casserole dish over medium heat.
    Add the onion and cook, stirring often, until lightly caramelized. 
    Add the ginger, garlic, turmeric and chili and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes.
    Stir in the cardamom seeds and lemongrass powder and cook for a few minutes more.
    Stir in the curry paste and cook until fragrant,
    then add the lamb pieces and stir well to thoroughly coat all the lamb with the paste.
    Stir in the yoghurt, bring to a simmer,
    then add the beer, stirring well to combine.
    Bring back to a simmer.
    Put the lid on the dish, place in the oven and bake for 45 minutes.

    Meanwhile, toss sweet potato with 1 tbs red curry paste and 1 tbs rice bran oil
    And roast for 20 minutes
    Toss with 2 tbs coriander
    and add to casserole
    Then back into oven for another 30- 40 minutes lid on
the meat should be quite tender by now.
    Add the sugar snap peas and beans and bake, still covered, for a final 5 minutes. 
    Stir the remaining coriander through just before serving.

    Wednesday, July 25, 2018

    Pork Chops in Creamy Tomato Sauce

    What I am loving about regularly cooking for several people…
    (who will eat anything, well almost everything,) on a daily basis...
    It gives me a chance to try out some of the many recipes I read everyday
    So much inspiration, most, really so so simple and so so tasty
    Just perfect

    Recently staying with my Hawkes Bay Hosts, I came across this on the Better Recipes Site, submitted by Rachel Popa
    Pork Chops in Creamy Tomato Sauce... of course, as usual, I often make some changes to make the recipe my own
    Usually to add some extra flavour
    This time I added Onions...Everything tastes better with Onions
    Plus I used Passata instead of canned tomato sauce recommended by the recipe writer
    And for extra seasoning some Vegeta Powdered stock.
    Thumbs up from the hosts


    4 Pork Chops
    2 teaspoons Garlic powder

    Sea Salt and Black Pepper
    1 tablespoon Olive oil
    1 onion thinly sliced
    1 cup Tomato Passata
    1/2 cup cream
    1/2 cup hot water with 1 tsp Vegeta dissolved
    1/4 cup basil chopped

    First, preheat oven to 180 degrees C.
    Trim excess fat off the pork chops
    Place the fat in a cold pan and slowly raise heat to medium and render it
    Perfect for browning the chops

    Sprinkle pork chops in garlic powder
    Season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    Brown in the fat over medium heat… for about two or three minutes on each side.
    Set aside
    Add olive oil to pan and add onions
    Lightly sauté till translucent
    Meanwhile mix Passata, Cream and hot water with powdered Vegeta
    Add to onions in the pan
    Cook for about 2-3 minutes
    Add chopped Basil
    Place the pork chops in a baking dish, and pour onion sauce over pork chops..
    Bake covered in the oven for 30-45 minutes or until pork chops are cooked through.
    Tear some basil leaves over the top

    Serve with Mashed Potato and other vegetable of choice… we had Brussel Sprouts and Cauliflower
    NB: Mary used the leftover sauce mixed with some fried bacon to smother some pasta
    Waste not want Not, Another Dinner...always a winner