Sunday 30 June 2013

Camembert-stuffed turkey meatballs

This is a bit of a cheat as it is a throw back to the Camembert stuffed turkey meatloaf from back in 2011. I decided that I would do something similar so I made it into meatballs this time. Although I will say that the meatloaf was better at containing the Camembert as a lot of the meatballs had the cheese ooze out during cooking.

This time around I didn't put the quinoa, tomatoes or craisins in the mix. I did add some extra herbs and pepper. The sauce I made was pretty much the same except I used cranberry sauce in place of the redcurrant. It was a bit thick though, it would have been better if I thinned it down so that it was more of a sauce rather than a glaze. 

Over all, it was still just a wonderful as before and I will definitely make either the meatloaf or meatballs again. I served with roasted potato and sweet potato wedges and steamed broccoli and snow peas.

Thursday 27 June 2013

Provencal Potato Bake

I love my side dishes. I really do like to pep up a meal with a tasty side dish. When making a main that is a bit plainer, a steak or lamb chops just pan fried, I like to make the sides full of flavour. This was one of those instances. I served this with some pan-fried lamb loin chops which were just seasoned with some salt and pepper. 

I really loved this. Although I love anything that combines capers and olives. I am not keen on rosemary, I find it a bit too strong for me no matter how little I use. I had the parsley all chopped to sprinkle on top before I photographed and served but forgot about it. It didn't really matter, it still looked and tasted excellent. I loved how crispy that they ended up. 

Recipe from delicious November 2011 - Provencal Potato Bake

Tuesday 25 June 2013

AGT April 2013 - Sweet potato pancakes with bacon & maple syrup

Okay, okay, I know this is going back a couple of months now. I was going to cook from Australian Good Taste like I do delicious magazine but I haven't really been doing that. I planned to rectify this however, I received notice in the mail that Australian Good Taste is going to cease being published. The August issue will be their last. It is sad as it is a good magazine. There has been a couple of foodie magazines shut down recently. I hope that my other favourites keep going. I would be completely lost without delicious.

When I first received this issue in the post I couldn't stop staring (drooling) over the cover recipe. It just looks amazing. The combination of the chocolate cake with ganache and malted buttercream topped with the maltesers is just a stunning combination. I really wanted to make it but there really isn't anyone to cook for. It wouldn't be a cheap cake to make. I might make it the next time I get together with my friends for a bbq. 

I also have the Smoky root vegie hash with eggs and beans marked to make. It would make either an excellent lunch or easy dinner. The only root veg in it are sweet potato and potato and I think that I would probably change that. Most likely swapping out the potato for something like celeriac, although beets would work too. The smoky flavour comes from smoked paprika, I would probably use my hot smoked paprika to add a bit of a kick. 

I ended up making the Sweet potato pancakes with bacon & maple syrup for breakfast one morning. Well, brunch really. The recipe called for the sweet potato to be boiled and then mashed. There are a lot of recipes that have pumpkin, sweet potato and the like boiled or steamed before mashing for use in other recipes. I would prefer to roast and then mash since boiling and steaming adds extra water into the vegetables that usually causes problems in the final recipe. I baked in their jackets until soft then left to cool, peeled and mashed. I really liked these pancakes, they were so light and fluffy with such a great flavour. The sweetness of the roasted sweet potato really came through. Adding bacon and maple syrup just rounded it out beautifully. 

Sweet potato pancakes with bacon & maple syrup

400g sweet potato, roasted whole, then cooled, peeled and mashed
265g (1 3/4 cup) plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarb
1 tbsp caster sugar
500ml (2 cups) milk
2 eggs
40g butter, melted, cooled
Bacon, fried (or baked) until crisp
Maple syrup, to serve

Combine flour, baking powder, bicarb and sugar. Whisk together milk, eggs and butter. Add milk mixture and sweet potato to the flour and stir until smooth.
Heat a large non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat (I use an electric griddle). Melt a small amount of butter in the pan.  Drop 1/3 cup batter into pan. Spread slightly. Cook until bubbles appear on the surface. Turn and cook for 1 minute or until golden. Transfer to a plate. Cover with a clean tea towel to keep warm. Repeat with remaining batter to make 12 pancakes.
Divide pancakes among plates. Top with bacon. Drizzle over maple syrup.

Monday 24 June 2013

June 2013 - Crunchy mac and cheese with bacon

Hmm, it has taken me almost a whole month to post this. I made this on the 1st of the month. My words have taken a holiday and it is so very frustrating. I have started a few posts and haven't gotten very far with any of them. I think I will just have to push it for a while. Even if it means just posting some recipes and photos at least that will keep things happening on here. I do keep cooking food so it will also keep it from building up too much. 

As for this issue of delicious magazine, well, there wasn't that much that I really wanted to make. Besides the mac & cheese that I ultimately made. There was really only two other recipes. The first was Katie Quinn Davies' Smoky beef chilli con carne. With an ingredients list as long as your arm it looks to be a complicated recipe but when you read further into it it really isn't that difficult. I do find that a lot of recipes that have long ingredients lists aren't really that complicated. The main reason I didn't make it is because I didn't have everything on hand. I can never get chipotle chillies in adobo sauce anywhere other than online and sometimes I just don't want to have to purchase everything online. When shopping online it isn't just a matter of picking up one item and going due to postage costs. Previously I haven't really worried about it and just filled a cart up but that is how I ended up with a huge amount of food on hand with random bits and pieces some of which I am not really sure what to do with now. Oh and the recipe used bourbon, I don't drink it so don't have it on hand. Alcohol is expensive, especially spirits, something else for "one day". Maybe the next time I am making pecan pies, my recipe isn't the same without bourbon. 

I also really liked the look of the crumbed wasabi chicken with crunchy japanese salad. Although I probably wouldn't make the salad. The only thing that puts me off is using ground wasabi peas. I did that with salmon before and it was so hard to grind up the peas, although in this recipe the aren't ground finely, just coarse so it probably wouldn't be as difficult. There is also a mix of mayonnaise and wasabi paste to go with it. The recipe just says whole-egg mayonnaise but, really, if you are making something with Japanese flavours surely it requires kewpie mayonnaise. 

I ended up making Katie Quinn Davies Crunchy mac and cheese with bacon. It was very good, a lovely bit of comfort food because that is what mac and cheese is for me. There was really only two differences to what I would normally do, the first is that there was some cream in it and secondly the breadcrumbs on top. The recipe used a combination of panko and sourdough breadcrumbs. I didn't have any sourdough so I just used all panko. Oh and I put some parmesan in as well. I served with chicken thigh fillets that I had dredged in flour and hot smoked paprika and pan-fried. The creaminess of the mac and cheese combined beautifully with the spiciness of the chicken.

Crunchy mac and cheese with bacon

400 g macaroni, cooked and drained (I used shells)
50 g unsalted butter
1/3 c (50 g) plain flour
3 c milk 
250 g strong vintage cheddar, grated 
1/4 c grated parmesan (my addition) 
Pinch nutmeg
250 g bacon, finely chopped, cooked until golden & crisp
1 c parsley, chopped
1/2 - 1 c panko breadcrumbs

Melt butter, add flour and cook, stirring 1 - 2 minutes. Slowly add milk, whisking after each addition until smooth and thickened. Add 200 g cheese and parmesan, stir to melt then add cream and nutmeg. Combine macaroni, cheese sauce and bacon. Spread into individual baking dishes or a large baking dish, top with combined breadcrumbs and remaining cheese. Bake for 20 minutes at 180 C or until golden.

Tuesday 18 June 2013

French Toast Crumpets

Wow, have I ever been lazy this month, well in terms of posting on here. I have been busy though, well sort of. I have things that I have cooked. I just haven't gotten around to posting them yet. I will start off with this quick little recipe. I worked this one out a while ago and have made it a lot since. 

I love french toast and one morning I really wanted some but I didn't have any bread in the house. I did, however, have a packet of crumpets. I decided that they would make the best french toast and they did. They are like a sponge and just suck up the egg mixture. It gets into all those little holes and you get lots of eggy goodness. Plus it is so easy to make. I served them with a quick blueberry sauce. 

French Toast Crumpets

Serves 1

2 crumpets, I like the wholemeal ones. 
2 eggs 
1 tbsp cream (or milk) 
1/2 tsp vanilla

Whisk eggs, cream and vanilla together. Add crumpets one at a time until fully soaked with egg mix. 
Fry in a pan over low-medium heat until browned. Serve immediately. 

Blueberry Sauce

Handful frozen blueberries
1 tbsp caster sugar

Combine and heat over a medium heat. Squish some of the berries and simmer until slightly thickened.