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    Tuesday, December 23, 2014

    For A Change Try Sausage and Pasta - Another Kid Friendly Meal


    The Kids were coming over and I remembered that, previously, I had made a Gordon Ramsay Pasta dish, using Sausage meat... so I looked it up in the cook book
    Turns out, the recipe I was thinking of, was actually a rice dish
    The kids wanted Pasta, so I devised this dish, inspired by Gordon (I feel I can call him Gordon)
    It is so different from the original I think I can call this mine

    2 tablespoons Olive oil
    Onion peeled and chopped
    Sea salt and freshly Ground Black Pepper
    Red pepper chopped
    Sausages from the famous Westmere Butcher
    Beef, Garlic, Parsley and Parmesan, perfect

    1 1/2 sausages per person will be enough

    White wine to deglaze
    2 cups chicken stock

    Pasta, Farfalle, cooked to manufacturers instructions

    2 medium fresh tomato chopped

    1 head of Broccoli
    Olive oil
    2 cloves of Garlic peeled and finely chopped
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    Zest of 1 Lemon

    Spring onions to garnish and or chives
    Chopped parsley


    Grated Parmesan
    Method
    Place olive oil into a pan, heat to medium heat
    Add chopped onions
    Saute till soft
    Add chopped red pepper and sauté till soft
    Season with S & P
    Meanwhile remove sausage meat from skins and break up to resemble small meatballs

    Add to pan, I actually used a second pan to brown the sausage, stop it from stewing
    plus you get a better flavour

    Add all the cooked sausage meat to the pan
    Deglaze the sausage pan, with a slosh of white wine and tip into the main pan

    Add chicken stock
    Bring to a simmer and cook gently for about 15 minutes

    So the Broccoli
    Cut into small florets
    Blanch in salted water for about 3-4 minutes
    Drain and put into ice water
    This will stop it cooking and keep the nice green colour
    Drain and out aside

    In a large pan, add the olive oil
    Throw in the chopped garlic
    Season with salt and pepper and the lemon zest
    Add the cooked broccoli
    Toss well
    Set aside

    So, cook the pasta
    I usually allow 100 gms per person

    When it is just cooked
    Drain
    At this stage,
    Add the broccoli and chopped tomato
    to the sausage
    Toss well
    Add pasta
    Mix well

    Dish up and grate some Parmesan over the top
    garnish with some chopped green onion tops or chives and a little chopped parsley

    Loved by young and old
    Very tasty

    Sunday, December 21, 2014

    Christmas Appetisers - Feed The Drinkers - When Only White Bread will do


    It's that wonderful time of the year again Christmas and it is usually full of good cheer
    It is really important that you feed the drinkers
    The best soaker upper, is of course...White bread
    Of course offer lovely crisp vege and dips, also I do have some gluten free appetisers in another blog
    Click here to view.

    You can serve a cheese board with cherries, for those who are not eating bread, but for the majority,

    How about these Little Chicken and Pistachio Sandwiches, and some Mushroom filled Patty Cases

    I have stolen the Sandwich filling from my good friends Mary and Catherine
    Probably a little different from theirs, but any way you do it,
    Guaranteed Tasty!

    So first buy some white sandwich sliced bread
    Butter well

    Filling
    1 medium chicken breast poached and finely chopped
    3 tablespoons chopped pistachio nuts
    2 tablespoons finely chopped chives
    2 tablespoons finely chopped gherkins
    3 tablespoons mayonnaise
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    Mix together well
    Place filling on one slice of the bread
    Cover with another buttered slice
    flatten with your hand and cut off the crusts
    Cut into triangles
    Pop on a little plate
    Sprinkle with a little chopped parsley
    So for the Mushroom Savouries
    I found these in one of my Cajun Cooking Bibles

    Terry Thompson’s “Cajun-Creole Cooking”.
    I have just checked out Amazon.com and you can buy Terry’s book from them.
    It is a great addition to your Cookbook Library

    First make the Patty Cases.
    These are the best ones I have ever made.
    You must use the (as we call it) "plastic" white sandwich bread.
    You know that soft white bread that the food police say “DON’T EAT”…
    I have to say when one has a hangover, a little sandwich made from this bread, maybe bacon and mashed egg, is just the ticket.

    So cut the crusts off and roll the bread both ways
    Cut out shapes with a pastry cutter.
    I used these mini muffin tins. I got 2 rounds per slice of bread.
    Butter the muffin tins and carefully press the bread rounds in.
    Bake 200C for 10 minutes. You can keep them in an airtight container for a few days or they will keep in the freezer for up to 3 months.
     Mushroom Filling.
    ¼ cup unsalted butter
    4 green onions chopped
    2 tablespoons minced parsley
    2 tablespoons minced chives
    250 gm mushrooms finely chopped
    3 tablespoons flour
    ¾ cup cream
    ¼ teaspoon dried thyme or 1 teaspoon fresh thyme finely chopped
    ¼ teaspoon cayenne
    1 ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    Sea salt
    1 tablespoons lemon juice
    24 baked Patty Shells
    Grated Parmesan Cheese.
    2 tablespoons butter at room temperature


    Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat
    Add green onions parsley and chives
    Cook until wilted about 3 minutes
    Add mushrooms
    Cook 10 minutes, or until liquid evaporates.
    Sprinkle flour over mixture, stir till blended
    Cook 2 minutes stirring it will be dry be careful it doesn’t stick to pan.
    Stir in cream, thyme cayenne freshly ground black pepper, salt and lemon juice.
    Reduce heat to low cook 5 minutes or until thickened.

    Preheat over to 175C
    Place patty pans on baking tray and fill with cooled mixture.
    Top with a little Parmesan cheese and ¼ teaspoon butter
    To add to the Christmas Theme, 
    I topped them with a little slice of tomato and a little touch parsley

    Bake about 10 minutes until mixture is bubbling

     I made the Mushroom Savouries for a drinks party yesterday and they were gone in minutes

    Tuesday, December 02, 2014

    Kids Chicken and Potato Dinner - Nutella Dessert? Perfect


    I’m always looking for recipes, that fill my Grandchildren with Joy.
    They are good eaters and enjoy their food and like trying something new.
    There is a couple of allergy issues but as the children grow, these are getting better.

    Italian Food is away popular and also, the kind of food, I was brought up with.

    Grandma style

    This week,  I thought I would try a couple of new things
    My friend Trish has a recipe for Potatoes that she used to use in her Restaurant and very popular it was too. Just toss your potatoes in French Onion Soup Mix and Cream
    Yum. How easy is that?

    Next I am not a Paleo person, it’s the restrictions that drive me crazy, nevertheless there are some ideas which are worth trying… have heard a bit about Cauliflower Rice
    Why not try Broccoli Rice
    Yes that was fun and they liked it.

    Different

    Next for the protein, Jamie Oliver in his one of 15 minute Meals, cooked, what he called Golden Chicken, so I borrowed that.

    Back to The UK Super Chefs, Gordon Ramsay, in his Ultimate Home Cookery, produced a 3 Layer Sandwich Meringue Cake. He layered it with melted chocolate folded into whipped Cream

    I made a couple of changes. Not just ordinary Melted Chocolate
    But how about Nutella mixed into the cream
    Terrific. show me a kid who doesn't like Nutella
    So an excellent Menu all in all

    Trish’s Potatoes

    Take 4 large Potatoes peel and chopped into medium cubes
    Bring to the boil in salted water and simmer till they are almost cooked
    Drain and pop into a oven dish
    1 packet of French Onion Soup Mix
    200 ms cream


    Sprinkle the potatoes with the soup mix,
    Season with a little salt and pepper

    Funnily enough the French Onion soup mix is not overly salty
    so it needs some extra seasoning
    Pour the cream over
    Toss and pop into a Hot oven  200C and cook till cream is absorbed and potatoes are covered with the delicious creamy sauce


    Broccoli Rice
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1 small onion, roughly chopped
    2 heads Broccoli
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    Splash of water
    Zest of lemon
    Large knob of butter


    Place onion and whiz up in the food processor
    Add to a medium hot pan contain the olive oil
    Sauté gently

    Cut the Broccoli into small florets
    Don't throw away the stalk
    Peel it, and save, my kids love to eat it raw
    Back to the florets Put into the food processor and whiz till it turns into “Rice”


    Add to the onions and toss
    Splash in some water abut 3 tablespoons
    Season, cover and cook for about 4 minutes
    Grate in the zest of the lemon and add the butter
    Ready to serve

    Jamie’s Golden Chicken
    2 Large Chicken Breasts
    1 tablespoon chopped rosemary
    3 tablespoons flour seasoned with salt and pepper
    Olive oil


    Take the Breast and open them out so they are flattened and even
    Cut into serving size pieces

    Mix the seasoned flour and rosemary together
    Dip the chicken into the flour both sides
    Place olive oil into medium to hot pan
    Add chicken, only cook a couple of pieces at a time
    After a minute, turn it over and continue turning every minute
    till the chicken is cooked and golden
    A total of 5-6 minutes

    Remove and keep warm till needed while you cook the remainder

    Serve
    Voila
    Tender Tasty Chicken on Broccoli Rice with Creamy Potatoes

    So onto Gordon’s dessert
    I bought some roasted hazel nuts and whizzed them up in the food processor
    The Meringue
    4 egg whites
    225 gms caster sugar or Golden caster sugar
    50 gms ground hazelnuts

    For the Filling
    2 large tablespoons Nutella
    200 mls whipping cream


    Pre heat the oven to 140 C
    Beat the eggs white till they reach soft peaks
    Start adding the sugar, a tablespoon at a time
    Beat until the meringue is nice and shiny

    Gently fold in the ground hazelnuts
    Line 3 baking sheets with baking paper
    Mark out  a ring on each of approx 18cm
    To keep them anchored, just place a little piece of the meringue mix under each corner
    Spread the meringue equally over the 3 rings


    Bake for 1 1/2 hours
    When cooked, leave them in the oven with the door slightly ajar
    till cooled
    They are ready to go

    They can be kept in an airtight container for a week if necessary

    To  assemble

    Pick out the best ring for the top
    Lay one sheet on a plate
    Cover with the filling

    Top with another ring
    More Filling
    Last Ring and top with the remainder of the  Filling

    Place in the fridge for at least 2 hours before serving

    What to do with the leftover yolks
    Make a Chocolate Pudding of course

    Thank you Martha Stewart
    I am not normally a milk pudding sort of person, but even I like it

    The kids loved it
    Ingredients

        2/3 cup sugar
        1/4 cup cornstarch
        1/4 teaspoon salt
        1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (if making chocolate pudding)
        2 1/2 cups milk
        4 large egg yolks
        2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
        1 teaspoon vanilla extract


    Directions

    Place a fine-mesh sieve over a medium bowl; set aside. 

    In a medium saucepan, off heat, 
    whisk together sugar, cornstarch, and salt. 
    If making chocolate pudding, add cocoa powder. 
    Very gradually (a few tablespoons at a time) 
    whisk in milk, taking care to dissolve cornstarch. 
    Whisk in egg yolks.

    Whisking constantly, cook over medium heat until a skin appears

    Reduce heat to low; still whisking, cook 1 minute. 
    The bubbles will incorporate and Voila Look at that
    Rich Chocolate velvety pudding
    Remove from heat; 
    immediately pour through sieve into bowl. 
    Stir butter and vanilla into hot pudding.
    Place plastic wrap directly on surface of pudding (to prevent skin from forming); 
    chill at least 3 hours and up to 3 days. 
    Before serving, whisk pudding until smooth; divide among four serving dishes.
    Unfortunately I neglected to take a picture. Silly me
    So you will have to use your imagination
    Of course it needs a little whipped cream to cut the richness