Posts

Turkey Meatballs with Chorizo in Tomato Sugo

Image
So I overindulged over the weekend, which is usually standard practise but this weekend was extra-indulgent because I turned THIRTY. Yep, I'm officially an adult. NO! You can't make me!!! Ok, but really, I celebrated turning thirty by pretty much eating and drinking all weekend. Needless to say my thirty-year old body is not what it once was and I am feeling the pain of the rich food overload.

In true old-lady style I thought I would make a hearty yet healthy dinner on Monday night to sort-of balance out all the pizza, fries and cake I ate over the weekend, so putting some turkey mince to good use I make some gluten-free meatballs in a nice rich tomato sauce with some green beans on the side (and not a starchy vegetable in sight!)



You will need...
500gr turkey mince
1 large egg
1/4 cup gluten free flour such as rice or coconut flour
1 Tbsp fresh chopped basil
100gr skinned and finely diced chorizo sausage (cos the thing needs some flavour!)
1/2 a large brown onion, finely dic…

Croissants

Image
I have finally decided to try my hand at Croissants, they have always daunted me for some reason. It's probably because I'm not a one for patience, which is one of the main ingredients in croissant-making.

I've rarely made puff pastry, opting for store bought every time. I'm not proud to admit it, but I'm just not interested in spending such a huge amount of time laminating dough (you know, all the folding of the butter in the dough so you get all the layers required in a good puff). But I'm conquering my fears and making croissants which uses the same technique of laminating dough, with the added fun of using a yeast-risen dough (yay more waiting).

So here goes my first attempt at croissants... I was already worried when the recipes I looked up online told me that I definitely WOULD NOT get these right the first time. Well, thanks for the vote of confidence guys! I feel like maybe this doesn't apply to me seeing as these recipes are targeted at at-home ba…

Braised Beef Spanish Style with Chimichurri

Image
This recipe is a revelation and once you make it it will end up being a staple in your cooking rotations. You will notice that I keep the beef and sauce separate, and only combine the two when reheating. The reason I do this is so that I can make a large batch, portion the beef into zip-lock bags and freeze them, along with pouring the cooking liquid into ice cube trays, freezing and then also into zip lock bags for portion control.  
This way I can reheat the beef and sauce whenever I like. Also, keeping the beef separate to the sauce means that it can be used in a whole different manner of ways. I've used it in curries- cooking veggies in coconut milk with red curry paste and then adding the beef at the end as an easy week night dinner. It can be added to salads, pizzas and even stir-frys. 
Or you can just eat it once cooked with the sauce over a bed of rice or with some vegetables or roast potatoes on the side as I did with our meal. I highly recommend making the chimichurri t…

Grilled Salmon, Chickpea, Quinoa and Kale Salad with Tasty Tahini Dressing

Image
If you are new to cooking salmon, heres a great little resource for pan-frying a really good bit of fish----> http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-cook-perfect-salmon-fillets-230150

I would recommend using this method for most fish and meats. Bringing seafood or meat to room temperature before cooking and using a hot pan is key for ensuring your protein doesn't 'seize' up and go tough while cooking. Also, I recommend resting EVERYTHING before you serve it. Most people know to rest meats like beef and lamb but not many people know that fish and chicken also require a good rest time to ensure tenderness and juiciness.

Always cook the side you intend to serve facing up first (chef trick), and if you are a fan of crispy salmon skin then ensure you salt the skin (just like you would crackling) and cook it first in a good bit of oil. As you can see from my images, I didn't serve skin side up as we passed on the skin this time- but it always adds a nice bit of crunchiness to t…

Tomato Bruschetta

Image
I recently found a couple of rogue tomato plants that had somehow taken root in my garden beds. Now it has to be said that I have tried and failed many times to grow my own fruit, herbs and vegetables,  so I have given up and now only keep hardy succulents that I know I can't kill.

But when I saw these tomato plants growing out of nowhere, I decided to leave them and see how they fared without my grey thumb touching them. So, surprise surprise, I now have two large tomato vines, both baring fruit to the tune of about 30-40 tomatoes. These beauties have thrived on my neglect and I was able to pluck two ripe ones yesterday. WINNING!


In honour of the first fruit I have ever grown from a seedling in my own backyard, I decided to make the most traditional tomato dish ever- Tomato Bruschetta! Bruschetta, meaning 'toasted bread' has no limits it seems, with most restaurants serving all different incarnations of the delicious Italian snack. There is only one true bruschetta in my…

Easy Banana Bread

Image
A few simple steps and you can have yummy banana bread, you can slice this loaf up, wrap it up and freeze it for lunch boxes or eat it all in one go!

You will need...
3 ripe bananas
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup margerine
3/4 cups caster sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicard soda
2 cups plain flour

Method...
1. Preheat the oven to 170 degrees celsius, grease and line a loaf tin.
2. Peel all the bananas, mash two in a bowl using a fork, and slice the other banana lengthways and set aside to place on top of the banana bread.
3. Sift all dry ingredients together into a bowl. In a separate bowl, lightly whisk the eggs, add the milk and mashed banana.
4. Melt the margarine in the microwave and set aside to cool.
5. Form a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients slowly while mixing with a wooden spoon, stir well to make sure there are no lumps then finally add the melted margarine and stir to combine well.
6. Pour the batter into the prepared tin and then to…

Pork Roast with Homemade Gravy

Image
You will need..
2.5kg pork leg roast, de-boned, trussed with skin scored (ask your butcher to do this for you)
2 Tbsp sea salt
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp lemon juice
fennel seeds (optional)

Mirepoix- chunky diced vegetables
1 carrot
1 onion
2 celery sticks
4 cloves garlic (leave whole in skins- just lightly bruised)

Gravy
2 Tbsp plain flour
2 cups reduced salt stock (or water)

Salad
1 fennel bulb, shaved
1 granny smith apple, thinly sliced
1/2 cup roasted, peeled hazelnuts
1 cup baby rocket leaves
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp vinegar of your choice
salt and pepper to season

roasted vegetables of your choice- pumpkin and sweet potato go well

Method..
1. Preheat your oven to 240 degrees celsius.
2. Dice the mirepoix and in the bottom of a heavy roasting tray, and lightly drizzle with olive oil.



3. Rub a drizzle of olive oil over the skin of the pork. Scatter salt to evenly cover in a light layer over the pork skin, then drizzle lemon juice and a scatter of fennel seeds if you are using. Lightly mas…