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    Friday, July 28, 2006

    Supreme Cheese Cake

    How about trying this for an after dinner treat served with maybe some slices of fresh pear and some crackers.

    I saw this made by Bob Blumer The Surreal Gourmet and it is a little boomer.
    At left are the ingredienst very simple.

    I took
    2 brie cheeses (see if you can get the 11 cm size for best balance)
    1 Clue Castello cut in half horizontally lie the sides next to one another
    1 pkt raw pistachio nuts lightly toasted
    1 pkt marscapone cheese

    300 mls marsala wine
    3 tsp sugar

    Reserve about 10 pistachio and then whiz the rest up in the food processor.

    First make a simple syrup of the marsala and sugar.
    Simmer till reduced by half.
    Reserve about 20-30 gms of marscapone to make the little rosettes
    and add the syrup to the rest of the marscapone and stir well.

    To build

    One brie on the bottom then the Blue Castello then the other brie.

    Ice the cake with the marsala marscapone.
    Press the chopped nuts around the side.

    Make little rosettes with the reserved marscapone on top and pop a little pistachio on top.
    Voila not just a cheese cake but in fact a cheese gateau fit for a king.

    Cooking on Boats

    Winter at sea in Auckland...not too bad?

    We are back on the boat again. It is a wonderful time to eat and drink. The weather was clear, sunny, beautiful and very cold.

    I thought you might like to see the little galley that I work out of.
    It is very functional and we have catered for at least 10 people out of here.

    The oven is interesting it is either hot or not but with years of experience I can make most things I must admit I haven’t attempted cakes.
    But I have made great bread which I will show a little later

    Here are a couple of interesting dishes I grabbed off Food TV.
    And cooked on the boat.

    Filet steak with mushrooms, spinach tomatoes and shallots.

    This seems like a lot of pans and trouble but really it is worth it…so so tasty.

    I served it with a piece of roasted buttercup squash each

    You need for 2 people
    1 200 gm piece of filet steak per person
    1 large Portobello mushroom each, stalks cut off so they lay flat
    1 tbs olive oil
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    Few sprigs thyme

    1 tbs olive oil
    2 large tomatoes cut into 8
    2 shallots sliced
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    ½ tsp of sugar

    1 tsp olive oil
    Pkt baby spinach
    1 whole clove garlic peeled
    S & P

    2 large slices Gruyere cheese.

    In a small pan heat olive oil and throw in tomatoes and shallots season and add sugar this is really good for getting the best flavour from your tomatoes
    Toss around till vegetables soft and keep warm.

    Heat oven to 200 ◦C
    Season steaks and mushrooms
    In a pan that can go in the oven heat till really hot
    Add oil and place b in and also mushrooms skin side down
    Throw in sprigs of thyme.

    Leave for a couple of minutes to get a good golden crust on the steak
    Turn all over and leave for about a minute and place into the oven
    About 8 minutes for med rare.

    While steaks are cooking heat another pan add olive oil and then the spinach
    It will wilt very quickly just move it around with the clove of garlic on a fork.
    This is enough to flavour the spinach without overpowering it.
    Season with S & P.
    Just as you are ready to serve put the gruyere slices in with the spinach for about 20 seconds just to get it started

    Now ready to serve
    Turn your broiler on to maximum heat

    In your steak pan start building the towers
    Turn the mushroom onto its flat side
    Lay the tomato mixture on top
    Then the steak
    Place the spinach on top and cover each with a slice of the cheese

    Pop under the broiler till cheese starts to bubble
    Reove and place each tower onto your plates

    Looks great…tastes sensational.

    Doesn’t this look good!!!


    A little Goats Cheese Tart.
    I saw Mike from “Heaven’s Kitchen” make this.
    We had a staff party last week and I made a bigger version of this
    it was very successful.

    First caramelize your onions
    4 large onions sliced
    1 tbs olive oil
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    Pinch of sugar
    Thyme leaves

    Heat oil in pan and add the onions, seasoning plus sugar and thyme and gently saute for about 15- 20 minutes until they turn golden brown

    Frozen sheets of savoury short crust pastry enough to cover your favourite pie plate.
    Bake blind about 10 - 15 minutes in 190◦C oven.

    125 gms soft goat’s cheese
    2 eggs
    1 cup milk
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    More thyme leaves
    4-5 black olives stoned and chopped in half

    Remove pastry shell from oven and add onions, break up goats cheese place around pan.
    Meanwhile beat eggs, milk S & P and pour over goat’s cheese.
    Sprinkle with thyme and olives.

    Bake in to 180◦C oven for another 25 minutes or until set.

    I served this with a tangy Green Mango Salad.
    This is really easy and would go well lamb, chicken, goodness almost anything

    1 green mango peeled and grated
    1 red chili de-seeded and chopped finely
    Handful chopped mint
    1 spring onion chopped finely

    1 tbs brown sugar
    1 tbs fish sauce
    Juice of 1 lime

    Put all the veges in your serving bowl
    Mix dressing ingredients and toss together.

    Friday, July 21, 2006


    Thank you for the comments I have been receiving. I am so thrilled that people are finding the site helpful. I will continue to post recipes. It's all been a lot of fun.
    I have been asked how to set up a's easy just go onto and follow the instructions and go for it!!!

    Wednesday, July 19, 2006

    Tuna Delights

    Tuna, Mint and Ginger Burgers

    Tuna goes so well with Mint and Ginger…
    Canadian Chef Michael Smith came up with this idea and I have converted his recipes to suit.

    He made Tuna Ceviche with the following ingredients and I thought why not make a Tuna Burger. It makes an economical fresh tuna dish as you can use the cheaper cuts of tuna.

    For 2 people

    300 gms fresh tuna (doesn’t have to be sashimi quality) chopped finely
    3-4 drops sesame oil
    1 tbs soya sauce
    Zest 1 lime
    Juice ½ lime
    2 tbs spring onions finely chopped
    1 tbs ginger grated
    2 tbs mint finely chopped
    Freshly ground black pepper

    2-3 tbs Vege oil

    Mix ingredients together, form into fat patties and fry till golden brown each side
    (about 3-4 minutes

    This salsa is delicious to serve with the burger, once again bringing in the ginger and mint.

    3 ripe tomatoes roughly chopped
    1 tbs grated ginger
    1 clove garlic finely chopped
    2 tbs mint finely chopped
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    2 tbs olive oil
    Juice ½ lime

    Just mix around in bowl and garnish burger.
    Of course you can put the burger in a bun.

    Now while we are doing Tuna patties try this one as an excellent appetizer

    Bob Blumer “The Surreal Gourmet” made this take on Tuna burgers they taste fantastic
    They are not as big as they look in the should just make them bite size pieces great to have with drinks.
    250 gms fresh Tuna
    1 egg beaten
    1 clove garlic crushed
    1 tbs grated ginger
    1 x spring onion
    Zest of 1 lime

    Vegetable oil for frying

    All into the blender…whiz up...but leave some texture.
    Make into little patties and fry about 1 minute each side

    Serve with little avocado slices and pickled ginger

    Tuesday, July 18, 2006

    Curried Parsnip Soup

    You know how you have days when everything you make seems to be a failure…
    well this certainly happened when I made this soup.
    This was created by the famous English Cookery writer Jane Grigson.
    In fact I read that in a magazine recently…and well her daughter Sophie made this on Food TV a couple of weeks ago so it was meant to be!

    Had some parsnips in the fridge, decided to make my own curry powder but was pipped at the post by the supermarket…No fenugreek anywhere so I bought a ready made curry powder from India (Hot).

    I overdid the curry powder and we had a lovely smooth soup (see photo), topped with a little cream and coriander leaves but all we could taste was hot curry. Very boring and difficult to eat.

    Not to be thwarted by this conundrum I went out and bought more parsnips, onions etc and used the left over soup as a stock…didn’t add any more spice, and a lovely parsnip soup was had.

    Here is the recipe please be careful how much curry powder you put in…

    To make your own curry powder, try this:
    Equal quantities of coriander seeds, cumin seeds, fenugreek, and chili flakes turmeric and grind in your mortar with the pestle or use a spice grinder. Keep in an airtight jar.
    Or use bought curry powder.

    I large parsnip peeled, wooden core out and diced
    1 med onion diced
    1 clove garlic
    1 med potato peeled diced
    Big knob of butter

    1-2 tsp curry powder
    1 tbs flour
    1 litre stock heated.

    Coriander leaves roughly chopped

    Add butter to pot and throw in vegetables, sauté gently till translucent, about 10 minutes.
    Add spices stir well
    Add flour mix around and then add hot stock stirring all the time, leave to simmer about another 10 minutes, until parsnips and potatoes are tender.

    Into your blender whiz till smooth,
    Serve with cream drizzled in and sprinkle some coriander leaves for colour and that little extra zizz.

    Tuesday, July 04, 2006

    Roast Root Vege with Spicy Coconut Sauce.

    This is a great vegetarian dish. I saw this on Huey’s Cooking Adventure on Food TV.
    I added the fish sauce, as I think it just gave an extra kick.
    Isn’t it amazing how when you first experience fish sauce you can’t stand the smell?
    The flavour it adds is so fabulous and any Thai styled food is really boring without it.
    I made this for staff lunch so the quantities in the picture are for a crowd.
    I forgot to take the picture till I had the food in the boot of the car so consequently… Sorry about the shadows. It may be my worst photo yet.
    Anyhow I think you get the picture!!!

    Heat oven to 190◦C
    For 2 people
    2 med carrots
    1 med kumara
    2 med parsnips
    1 large red onion
    2 med beetroot boiled whole till tender, cool then peel.
    2 tbs olive oil
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

    Cut all the vege the same size about 2.5 cms pieces.

    Heat oil in roasting pan on top of stove, and toss vege around to get them started.
    Season and roast for 10 minutes in oven.

    Meanwhile make sauce.
    2 chilies sliced
    2 cloves garlic chopped
    2.5 cms ginger peeled and grated
    5 tbs coconut cream, (use the cream on the top of the tin leave behind the water.)
    2 tbs soy sauce
    1 tbs fish sauce
    2 tbs palm sugar shaved
    2 tbs vege oil
    Zest and juice of 1 lime
    Big handful coriander chopped (about 1 cup)

    Extra coriander leaves for garnish

    Put all the ingredients into the blender and whiz it up.
    Taste for seasoning, add a little extra fish sauce if it needed.

    Remove the vege from the oven and pour the sauce over them.
    Toss well and back into the over about 20- 30 minutes.

    To serve turn into bowl and garnish with the coriander leaves.
    Accompany the vege with plain steamed or boiled rice.