Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Chicken Miso Soup

Ingredients
(serves 2)
Takes 20 minutes
  • 1/3 cup miso paste (I buy mine from Urban Hippie in Nelson). *Update, you can now buy this at Farro Fresh in Grey Lynn.
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 6 cups water
  • 4 free range chicken thighs, sliced
  • bunch of asparagus, tough ends snapped off
  • bunch of green beans, trimmed & halved lengthwise
  • 2 spring onions, sliced

Method

  1. Place miso paste, fish sauce & water in a saucepan over medium-high heat.
  2. Cover & bring to a boil, add chicken, asparagus & beans & stir.
  3. Lower heat & simmer for 5 minutes or until chicken is tender & cooked.
  4. Ladle into soup bowls & sprinkle with spring onions. Enjoy!

Stuffed Marrow with Mozzarella & Herbs

Mum gifted me a rather large marrow which I had no idea how to cook. After various searches I came up with this. I was determined to use some fresh herbs from my wee garden and I'm currently having a love affair with buffalo mozzarella, so viola!



Ingredients
(serves 2)
Takes 60 minutes (including cooking time)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary, leaves finely chopped
  • bag spinach (depends how big your marrow is), leaves roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp freshly ground fennel seed (or 1/2 tsp tarragon)
  • large handful fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped
  • Freshly ground pepper, salt to season
  • 1 large mozzarella ball, diced
  • 1 large marrow, halved & hollowed out
  • 2 free range eggs
  • 250ml (1 cup) milk
Method
  1. Preheat oven to 200 C.
  2. Heat olive oil in a large fry pan over low-medium heat & stir in garlic, cook until slightly brown, 2-3 minutes. Add rosemary and cook for a further 1-2 minutes.
  3. Add in spinach, handful at a time until wilted.
  4. Transfer to a bowl, add fennel, basil and season. Let it cool. This mixture smells divine!
  5. Add mozzarella.
  6. Cut marrow in half & trim ends. Hollow out creating a bowl, leave a 2cm shell.
  7. Discard flesh & seeds.
  8. Place spinach mixture into each half.
  9. Whisk 2 eggs & milk in a bowl, lightly season & pour over spinach mixture.
  10. Bake until quiche filling is set & marrow shells are tender, about 40 minutes. Enjoy!


Thursday, 13 December 2012

Asian Greens

These taste wonderful and the recipe is flexible as you can use seasonal greens.

Ingredients  
(serves 2)
Takes 10 minutes
  • 2 cups broccoli
  • big bunch choy sum or bok choy
  • bunch of asparagus or snow peas
Sauce
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger
  • 2 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 3 tbsp chicken stock, or stock cube or 2tbsp miso paste
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp honey (optional)
Method 
  1. Cut veges into similar sizes, snap woody ends off asparagus.
  2. Place veges in boiling water for 30 seconds then drain.
  3. Heat ginger in a wok with sesame oil over a med-high heat for 1 minute. Add remaining sauce ingredients & cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Add vegetables and toss through sauce. Cook for another minute until heated through. I served mine with Lamb Cutlets. Enjoy!

Lamb Cutlets with Parmesan Cheese


Finally got to use some of the herbs from the little herb garden I planted a couple of weeks ago (& it is little!). I served this with asian greens but you could easily serve it with couscous, mashed potato or a simple green salad. 
 
Ingredients
(serves 2)
Takes 30 minutes
  • 6 lamb cutlets, trimmed
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 tbsp fresh oregano & thyme leaves
  • 6 slices parmesan or feta (or cheese of choice, I wouldn't go too strong though as you don't want the cheese to be the star of the dish) 
Method
  1. Preheat oven grill to high.
  2. Place lamb cutlets into a baking dish and drizzle with olive oil & squeeze over lemon juice. Grind over a healthy serving of pepper and a pinch of salt.
  3. Grill for 2-3 minutes depending on size of cutlets. You want a slight colour on the lamb.
  4. Turn over and sprinkle with fresh herbs & top each cutlet with a slice or two of cheese. Grill until cheese has browned - few minutes on high.
  5. Turn oven to bake (keep on high temperature) & cook for 5-10 minutes.
  6. Serve with asian greens or a salad. Enjoy!    


 

Honey Salmon Salad


Ingredients
(serves 2)
takes 20 minutes

  • 400g diced salmon (or dice up one or two deboned fillets)
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • freshly cracked pepper
  • bag of mixed lettuce leaves OR baby spinach
  • 2-3 handfuls of fresh green beans, trimmed
  • bunch of fresh asparagus, ends trimmed (take the end of the asparagus between your thumb and forefinger and bend until it breaks) 
Dressing
  • 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • 1 tbsp honey 
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1-2 tbsp of olive oil
Method
  1. Make dressing: place all the dressing ingredients in a jar with a lid, shake and place in the fridge.
  2. Marinate salmon: whisk together in a bowl 2 tbsp honey, lemon juice & pepper and toss the salmon pieces until they are coated & set aside.
  3. To blanch veges: fill a large pot with 2 cups of water and bring to the boil. Add trimmed beans & asparagus. Cook for 1-2 minutes, strain and place veges in ice cold water. Strain & set place into a large serving platter or salad bowl.
  4. Heat a non stick fry pan over a medium to high heat.
  5. Place marinated salmon in the pan and cook for around 3-5 minutes.
  6. To serve: Place salad greens, beans & asparagus into the serving platter, place salmon over the top & pour over dressing with some freshly cracked pepper to taste. Bon appétit!


Inspired by donna hay

Monday, 3 December 2012

Tuna Chowder

Serves 4
Takes 15 minutes

Healthy and quick to make. What more could you ask for after a hard day at work...perhaps a cold beer to match?

Ingredients
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, peeled & finely diced
  • 2 large celery sticks, trimmed & finely diced
  • 1 tbsp wholemeal flour
  • 500ml skim milk
  • large can of tuna in water
  • 2 cups corn kernels (can used canned or frozen)
  • 1 tbsp freshly chopped thyme (or 2 tsp dried)
  • Salt & freshly cracked pepper
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • 2 tbsp freshly chopped parsley (to serve)
Method
  1. Heat the oil in large saucepan over a medium-low heat & add the onion & celery. Cook until both are soft, about 5-10 minutes.
  2. Stir in the flour & cook for another minute.
  3. Turn temperature down low and slowly add in the milk, mixing it in.
  4. Add the tuna & its liquid, sweetcorn & thyme. Mix then bring to the boil. Cover & simmer for 5 minutes.
  5. Remove pan from heat & season to taste. Sprinkle chowder with a pinch or two of cayenne pepper depending on how hot you like it & chopped parsley.
  6. Serve immediately & enjoy!

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Roast Pear, Blue Cheese & Walnut Salad

Ingredients
(serves 2)
Takes 30 minutes
  • 1/2 cup walnut halves
  • 1 firm pear, cored & cut into wedges
  • 50g firm blue cheese, crumbled
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • Salad leaves
Method
  1. Heat oven 190oC & bake walnuts until brown, about 5-10 minutes. Cool.
  2. Place pears in oven and drizzle with olive oil & roast 10-15 minutes until brown.
  3. Make vinaigrette by placing vinegar & mustard in a jar and shake until mixed.
  4. Arrange salad leaves in a bowl and arrange pears, walnuts & crumbled blue cheese on top & pour over dressing. Enjoy!

Puy lentils with Lamb Loin Fillets

Ingredients
(serves 2)
Takes 40 minutes

This is so easy & quick to do, very healthy but boy does it taste great! Trevor & I have a 'heart' rating system aka how much do we love it and this one was rated 4!
  • 25g butter
  • 1 small leek, diced
  • 1 stalk celery, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 carrot, finely diced
  • 1 tbsp chopped rosemary & parsley leaves (save the stalks)
  • 1 stalk thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup Puy lentils
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 2 Lamb Loin Fillets (I use Silver Fern Farms)
  • 1 cup prepared lamb jus
  • New Zealand Redcurrant Jelly (I use Barkers)
Method
  1. Melt butter in a large saucepan & gently cook the leek, celery, garlic, carrot & chopped herbs with a lid on for about 10 minutes or until soft but not browned.
  2. Tie the thyme, parsley stalks & bay leaf together with kitchen string & drop into the pot.
  3. Add the lentils & stock. Bring to the boil & simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally for 25-30 minutes.
  4. Get the loin fillets ready by seasoning to taste. When the lentils have 10 minutes to go pan fry for 3-5 minutes each side depending on how you like your lamb cooked. Remove from pan & rest under foil for at least 5 minutes before slicing in half.
  5. Warm the jus & serve alongside with redcurrant jelly. Bon appétit!

 

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Roasted Beetroot, Walnut & Feta Salad

Ingredients
serves 2
Takes 30-40mins
  • 4 cups, your choice of salad leaves ie rocket, lettuce
  • 3-4 large beetroot, scrubbed (peeled if old) & diced
  • 1/2 cup shelled walnuts, halved, roasted OR 1/4 cup roasted pine nuts 
  • 150g feta, crumbled
  • Vinaigrette dressing or red wine vinegar - we've been using Agretti Fig Condiment containing grape juice, red wine vinegar & fig juice. It's pretty darn good.
Method
  1. Preheat oven to 190oC
  2. Shell walnuts if using - this is a fun after work activity  with a hammer:) Place into a roasting pan and bake until slightly brown, around 10-15 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  3. If using pine nuts place in saucepan over low heat until they change colour. Set aside to cool.  
  4. Throw your diced beetroot into a roasting pan with a swig of olive oil & roast for around 30-40 minutes or until beetroot is tender. Set aside to cool slightly. 
  5. Place all the ingredients into a salad bowl and dress. Enjoy! 
    

Quinoa with Salmon and Mint Pesto

Ingredients
serves 4
Takes around 30mins 

  • 1 cup (200g) quinoa
  • 1 1/2 cups (375ml) vegetable stock
  • 1 bunch mint leaves
  • 30g parmesan, finely grated
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup (120g) frozen peas, blanched, refreshed, drained
  • 1 courgette, finely sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 lemon, finely grated zest & juice of 1/2 lemon 
  • 4 x skinless salmon fillets
Method
  1. Put quinoa & stock into a pot over a medium heat & bring to simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low & simmer for 15 minutes or until tender. Remove from heat, cover & set aside.
  2. Place mint (save a few leaves for garnishing), parmesan & 2 tbsp olive oil in a food processor, then whiz until a coarse paste.
  3. Add the peas, garlic, lemon zest & juice & blend until all combined. Season & put aside.
  4. Heat remaining 1 tbsp oil in fry-pan over medium-high heat. Season salmon & cook for 2-3 minutes each side until cooked but still a little rare in the centre. Rest for 5 minutes, then pull apart into bite size pieces.
  5. Combine quinoa with pesto, then stir in courgette. Place salmon & mint leaves over top. Enjoy!

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Prawn Saganaki

 Ingredients
(serves 2)
  • 500g uncooked prawns
  • 2-3 spring onions or red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1/4 tsp caster sugar
  • 400g canned whole tomatoes
  • few drops Tabasco
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped italian parsley
  • 1/3 cup each loosely packed fresh dill sprigs & mint leaves
  • 180g feta cheese
Method
  1. Shell & devein prawns leaving tails on.
  2. Slice onion, finely chop garlic. Finely grate lemon rind, segment lemon.
  3. Heat oil in a large frying pan; cook onion & garlic until soft, add prawns, stirring until they change colour.
  4. Add wine, sugar, undrained tomatoes, Tabasco and half of the herbs, bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer.
  5. Place lemon segments & crumbled cheese on top of prawns, sprinkle with rind & cook covered for around 3 minutes or until the cheese begins to melt.
  6. Season & sprinkle with remaining herbs. Serve with brown rice. Bon appétit!

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Beetroot Tarte Tatin

This is from River Cottage, Vege Everyday cookbook - currently my favourite cookbook out of the hundred or so sitting on my bookshelf!

I almost converted my meat loving boyfriend with this recipe. 

Hugh serves his with a vinaigrette dressing which is yum (& I've included the recipe) but a good quality balsamic glaze (which is thicker than your normal vinegar) goes beautifully and makes it quicker to serve.


Ingredients
  • 250g puff pastry
  • knob of butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp cider vinegar
  • trickle of honey or brown rice syrup (or 1 tsp brown sugar)
  • 300-400g baby beetroot, the size of a golf ball, scrubbed & halved  OR buy normal sized beets & quarter
  • Sea salt & freshly ground pepper
Vinaigrette
  • 2 shallots or 4 spring onions
  • 1 tsp English mustard
  • 1 tbsp cider vinegar
  • 4 tbsp rapeseed oil (or olive oil)
  • a pinch of sugar
  • handful of italian parsley leaves
Method
  1. Preheat oven to 190oC.
  2. Melt butter in a cast iron frying pan at a medium heat. Add the cider vinegar, sugar and some salt & pepper, stir well then add the halved beetroot cut side down and toss in the juices. 
  3. You want the beetroot to fill the pan snugly. Cover pan with foil and roast for 30-40 minutes in the oven until beetroot are tender.
  4. Take the pan from the oven and rearrange the beetroot halves neatly, placing them cut side up.
  5. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to a 5mm thickness & cut into a circle big enough to cover the fry pan.
  6. Lay circle over beetroot patting it down & tucking in the edges
    down the side of the pan.
  7. Return to oven & bake 20 minutes, until the pastry is fully puffed up & golden brown.
  8. Leave the tarte to cool in the pan for about 15 minutes, then turn out by putting a plate over the top and inverting it. Pour any juices left in the pan over beetroot.
  9. Put the ingredients for the vinaigrette into a food processor, season with salt & pepper and blend.
  10. Trickle over tarte tatin. Bon appétit!


Saturday, 10 November 2012

Butter Chicken

This is adapted from Bill Granger's 'Easy' cookbook. I nickname him the 'vain' chef as he constantly mentions his weight throughout the book. In fact he starts this recipe with "I'm too vain..." but it tastes great without all the added cream of a traditional butter chicken curry.


Ingredients
(serves 2)
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 large onion, finely diced
  • 2 tbsp curry paste (I used green)
  • 4-6 chicken thighs, cut into 2 cm chunks
  • 400g can of tomatoes
  • 1/3 cup of chicken or vege stock or white wine
  • 2/3 cup cashew nuts or almond meal (ground almonds)
  • 1/3 cup yoghurt (I use Naturalea acidophilus plain unsweetened although Bill uses thick Greek yoghurt which often contains cream so I've gone ultra healthy & it still tasted yum)
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • steamed rice (I used black rice which has a lovely sweet taste and went well with this but you can use basmati or brown or rice of your choice) OR cauliflower rice
  • lime wedges & handful fresh coriander to serve
Method
  1. Heat oil in a wok or large frying pan over a high heat and brown chicken pieces quickly on each side, remove & set aside.
  2. Lower heat to medium & cook onion for 6-8 minutes until soft & golden.
  3. Add curry paste & cook for another 1-2 minutes stirring until fragrant.
  4. Add tomatoes and stock, stir to combine. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat & cook gently for 10 minutes then add chicken and simmer for another 5 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
  5. Meanwhile, blitz the cashews in a food processor until finely ground.
  6. Add to the chicken & simmer for a further 5 minutes or until sauce has thickened.
  7. Remove from the heat & stir through the yoghurt &,lemon juice.
  8. Serve with steamed rice, dressed with coriander and a squeeze of lime juice. Bon appétit!

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Mushroom and Bean Hotpot

This one will not win a beauty contest but the taste is superb especially considering the ingredients are simple and it only takes 30 minutes to cook.


Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1-2 cups of button mushrooms (or whatever is in season), quartered
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 1 tbsp flour (I use wholemeal but rice or white could be substituted)
  • 1 tbsp mild curry paste or powder
  • 1/3 cup white wine (or  vegetable stock or water)
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 x 400g beans, drained & rinsed - I use whatever is in the cupboard. I've cooked this with kidney beans, white beans & chickpeas - it's always good
  • 3 tbsp mango chutney - I've started experiencing with other fruit chutney's. Last time I used half mango and half kiwifruit & banana chutney which I bought from a local market from some talented elderly lady. So good!
  • 3 tbsp roughly chopped fresh coriander and mint - optional but the fresh herbs do add to this dish
Method 
  1. Heat oil in a large pan over a low heat & cook the mushrooms & onion until soft and golden.
  2. Stir in flour & curry paste, then cook for 1-2 minutes before adding the wine/water, can of tomatoes, tomato paste & beans.
  3. Bring to the boil, then simmer gently for 30 minutes or until most of the liquid has reduced.
  4. Stir in the chutney & fresh herbs just before serving. Enjoy!

Monday, 15 October 2012

Honey Roasted Tomatoes

Ingredients
  • dozen small tomatoes, chopped in half or whole cherry tomatoes
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2-3 sprigs of fresh thyme, chopped (use mostly the leaves & throw a whole sprig or two on top)
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • pinch chilli flakes
  • pinch volcanic salt (or salt of choice)
  • freshly ground pepper 
Method
  1. Preheat oven to 180oC
  2. In an ovenproof dish mix all the ingredients together and roll tomatoes until covered. My honey was semi hard so I smeared mix all over the bottom of the dish and let it melt in the oven.
  3. Shake mixture after 10 minutes to ensure tomatoes are coated
  4. Bake for another 10-20 minutes depending on how many tomatoes you are using.
  5. Serve as side dish
I served my honey roasted tomatoes with a green salad and fish cakes (bought from Farro Fresh). Easy Monday :)

Sunday, 14 October 2012

French Onion Soup

Nothing like a hearty French Onion Soup in the middle of a very cold July, plus onions are cheap at the moment. If you have time, cook the onions slowly for a good hour or so, just remember to keep an eye on them or they will catch and burn - yes, I learnt the hard way! The more the onions caramelize the sweeter they taste however you can cook the onions within 10 - 15 minutes if you are in a hurry. When I do this method I sometimes turn the heat up high so the onions start to catch (i.e just start to turn brown) then remove from the heat and give them a good stir.


Ingredients
Serves 2
Depending on how long you have to caramelize the onions can take 15 minutes to 1 hour
  • big knob of butter and 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 6-8 large brown onions, sliced
  • 2-4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 cup red wine or dry white wine (or use extra stock with 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar)
  • 3 cups beef or vegetable stock
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, roughly chopped - if you don't have fresh use 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 bay leaves (remove before serving)
  • salt & pepper
  • toasted french bread or bread of choice
  • 1 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano (Parmesan cheese) or your favourite cheese to melt on top of the bread
Method
  1. Peel & chop onions. The chop blade on a food processor makes quick work of this (& less tears).
  2. Melt butter and olive oil in large saucepan over a low heat.
  3. Add onions & cook slowly for 1 hour until brown & caramelized. Don't forget to check the onions don't catch and give it a good stir every 15 minutes or so. If the onions haven't coloured within the hour turn heat up a tad.  If you don't have an hour cook the onions & garlic over a low heat for 10 minutes then add stock, thyme, bay leaves and increase heat to high & cook for a further 10 minutes. Season. Grill the bread as below and viola.
  4. Sprinkle over flour & stir in.
  5. Add wine and deglaze pan i.e stir in all the good bits that get stuck to the bottom of the pan
  6. Add stock, garlic, thyme & bay leaves, salt & pepper & bring to boil at medium heat.
  7. Reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered for a further 30 minutes.
  8. Preheat oven grill and toast bread on one side, turn over and sprinkle with grated cheese and grill until melted.
  9. Don't forget to remove bay leaves before spooning soup into bowls and top with the bread. Enjoy!


Tomato Sauce

Ingredients
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1-2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 4-8 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 x 400g tins of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tsp dried herbs (I use French herbs)
  • 1/2 tsp volcanic salt (or salt of choice)
  • 2 tbsp honey
Method
  1. Peel & crush garlic cloves with back of knife.
  2. Add oil to pan & saute sliced onion & garlic on low heat until soft and caramel looking. Around 30 minutes.
  3. Add herbs, salt, tomatoes & honey. 
  4. Cook on low until simmering.
  5. Blend with a stick blender
I like to serve over fresh pasta with roasted vegetables like pumpkin. I make the sauce in the weekend and use during the week for a healthy, quick meal. Bon appétit!



(Inspired by revive cafe)

Friday, 12 October 2012

Chicken, Green Bean & Broccoli Soup

This is a wonderfully warming soup by Donna Hay which has now become Trevor's signature dish ;)

Ingredients
Serves 4
Takes around 30 mins

  • glug olive oil
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp dried chilli flakes or fresh red chilli, finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp grated lemon rind
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 3 spring onions, finely chopped
  • 3 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 3 cups miso (mix 2 tbsp miso with hot water) - or just use stock
  • 2 chicken breasts or 4-6 thighs, sliced into bite size pieces
  • bag of green beans, trimmed and cut into bite size pieces
  • head of broccoli, trimmed and cut into bite size pieces
  • 3/4 cup of pearl couscous
  • fresh coriander, roughly chopped
Method
  1. In a large suacepan, warm oil over medium-high heat.
  2. Add garlic, chilli, lemon & onion & cook until onion is soft.
  3. Add stock & bring to a simmer.
  4. Add couscous and cook for around 2 minutes or until couscous starts to get soft.
  5. Add beans, spring onions, broccoli & cook for another 2 minutes
  6. Add chicken & cook until chicken is just done and couscous is soft in the middle.
  7. Spoon into bowls, top with fresh coriander leaves & enjoy! 



(Adapted from donna hay, simple dinners)

Monday, 1 October 2012

Chicken & Prawn Wonton Soup

To make a real quick version during the week I buy some frozen dumplings. When I have time I make my own. I don't eat pork so I use minced chicken and prawns instead. Enjoy!



Ingredients

  • 4 shiitake mushrooms - chopped. I used fresh but you can use dried porcini mushrooms. You will need to soak them for 20-30mins, drain & finely chop, keep the mushroom stock and add to soup
  • 100g raw prawns, peeled & finely chopped
  • 100g minced free range chicken
  • 4 water chestnuts, finely chopped (optional)
  • 4 spring onions (or shallots or fresh chives), trimmed & finely sliced
  • 1 free range egg white
  • salt & freshly ground pepper 
  • 1 1/2 tsp cornflour
  • 1 packet fresh wonton wrappers
  • 2 litres chicken stock
  • 2 cm piece root ginger, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or finely chopped
  • 1-2 lime kaffir leaves
  • 1 tsp fresh chilli, deseeded & finely chopped
  • 100g pak choi, washed & shredded (or anything 'choi')
Method
  1. Pour stock into a large pot (you want the wontons to move around), add the ginger, garlic & lime kaffir leaf. Bring to the boil then let it simmer while you prepare the wontons.
  2. Mix cornflour with 1 tbsp cold water to make a paste. Or just use water although I find the cornflour helps them stick better
  3. Mix chicken, prawns, water chestnuts, onions, egg white, chilli, mushrooms and season with salt & pepper. Mix well.
  4. Moisten edges of each wrapper then drop about a tsp in the middle of each one or use 2 wrappers per wonton, place tsp in middle and wet edges before placing 2nd wrapper on top. I used a fork to bring the edges together. 
  5. Makes about 26 wontons
  6. Bring stock back to boil, add wontons then simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the pak choi & cook for a further 2 minutes or until the pak choi is tender and wontons have floated to the surface and cooked through.
  7. Serve & sprinkle with spring onions or garnish of your choice. Enjoy!

Saturday, 29 September 2012

Salmon Gratin

Ingredients
Serves 2-4
Takes around 30 mins
  • Salmon pieces (boned & skinned)
  • 200g ricotta
  • 1/4 cup basil pesto
  • Huge bunch of baby spinach leaves OR silverbeet, leaves trimmed off stalk and roughly chopped up
  • Finely grated zest & juice of 1 lemon
  • Handful of pine nuts
  • 6 tomatoes (quartered) or 12 cherry tomatoes
Method
  1. Preheat oven to 200oC.
  2. Place salmon in the base of an ovenproof dish.Season with freshly cracked pepper.
  3. Layer spinach over the salmon. Really pack it in as it will reduce down.
  4. Place ricotta, pesto, lemon zest & juice in a bowl & mix. Season with freshly cracked pepper. Spoon mixture over spinach.
  5. Arrange tomatoes on top and sprinkle with pine nuts & some more freshly cracked pepper.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown.


(Adapted from Next Magazine, Oct 2011) 

Spinach Pizza

Ingredients
  • 2 large bunches of spinach (or silverbeet, I still can't eat silverbeet - bad childhood memories)
  • 2 small red onions (or 1 large)
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • Olive oil
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • tomato paste or puree or passata
  • Pizza base: I use whatever I have on hand i.e pita bread cut in two; Turkish bread; make your own or buy from shop - this works well with thin base 
  • Toasted pine nuts
  • Cheese of your choice: ricotta, mozzarella, blue cheese for example
Method
  1. Heat a glug (or 1 tbsp) olive oil in pan over a low-medium heat.
  2. While that's heating up, slice onion and crush garlic.
  3. Saute over a low heat until onion is soft. I sometimes throw a knob of butter in (love that smell of onions & garlic cooking).
  4. Wash spinach and chop roughly. I remove any thick stalks if not using baby spinach. Add to onions & garlic mixture in handfuls. Once one handful has wilted add the next.
  5. Depending on how much spinach you are using - and I like to use as much as possible - this process can take around 30 minutes.
  6. Keep the temperature low as you want to caramelize the mixture.
  7. Toast pine nuts in a saucepan over low heat until golden.
  8. Prepare pizza bases (halve pita bread if using) and cover with tomato paste & freshly ground pepper.
  9. Spread spinach mixture over bases then cover with cheese of choice & sprinkle over nuts
  10. Bake for around 10-15 minutes in an oven that's been pre-heated to 180oC until cheese melts & base is golden. Enjoy!