Saturday, 13 February 2016

Beef and Noodle Salad

I went a little crazy on the chilli when I made this the first time - had me running to the fridge to stick my tongue on ice! Apart from that little mistake this is an awesomely fresh and quick weekday meal slightly adapted from Penny Oliver's Simple Salad cookbook - well worth grabbing one for the humid Auckland summer.

INGREDIENTS

serves 2
  • 600 grams rump steak
  • 200 grams dried vermicelli rice noodles
  • handful sweet peas, podded & used raw
  • ½ telegraph cucumber, peeled and cut into 3cm pieces
  • 6 cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup each mint and Thai basil leaves (I only had normal basil on hand)
  • 1 long red chilli, seeded and thinly sliced (don't forget to check heat of chilli!)
  • Asian Dressing (see below)
  • ¼ cup roasted unsalted peanuts, chopped
Asian Dressing 
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce (or any hot chilli sauce)
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • Ground black pepper
Shake all the ingredients together in a sealed jar to combine.

METHOD
  1. Pan fry rump steak to your liking and allow it to cool.
  2. Cook the noodles according to the packet instructions and drain well. Add to large serving platter followed by the peas, cucumber, tomatoes, red onion, herbs and chilli. 
  3. Layer sliced beef over the top followed by the dressing then mix. Serve with peanuts scattered over the top and enjoy :)

Monday, 8 February 2016

Zucchini Gratin

Fantastic way to use up the last glut of courgettes if you were lucky to get some this year - mine started off so promising, flouting their flowers then promptly got a layer of mould and died. Never mind, courgettes are still cheap in the shops :)



Ingredients
serves 4

  • 6-8 zucchinis (depending on size)
  • 50g butter
  • 1 large onion, cut in half & sliced
  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp grated nutmeg 
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme or 1/4 tsp dried thyme or parsley 
  • 1/2 cup fresh or panko breadcrumbs 
  • 1/2 cup grated Gruyere or Parmesan cheese

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C
  2. Slice each zucchini into 4 or 5 slices and arrange in overlapping rows in an ovenproof dish
  3. Melt the butter in a very large saute pan and cook the onion over low heat until tender and starting to turn golden
  4. Add flour and cook for a few minutes stirring frequently.
  5. Add milk and stir until sauce comes to a boil then simmer over low heat for 6-7 minutes
  6. Season by adding salt, pepper & nutmeg
  7. Pour sauce over zucchini, add breadcrumbs, cheese and thyme and pour some good quality olive oil over the top
  8. Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden then serve hot. Yum :)

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Curry Fish Salad

Tasty salad from Lauraine Jacobs. Recipe calls for blue cod but I could only get Gurnard and it worked well. I've tweaked a couple of other ingredients as well. 

Don't be put off long list of ingredients, it's easy to throw together.

Ingredients
serves 2
takes 30 mins

Curry Dressing

  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp mild curry powder
  • 2 tsp chilli sauce
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper 
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
Fish
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper 
  • a good slug of olive oil
  • 300g gurnard or cod fillets
  • 1 small cucumber, peeled & shaved into fine ribbons
  • 1 stick celery, finely sliced
  • 1/2 red onion, finely sliced
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 tbsp shredded mint leaves
  • 1/2 cup puffed rice
  • 4 tbsp curry leaves, deep-fried (optional)

Method
  1. Combine all the dressing ingredients and blitz with stick blender
  2. Mix turmeric, salt & pepper with oil in a large bowl, add fish and toss to coat.
  3. Mix remaining vegetables & ingredients into large salad bowl
  4. Place a dash of olive oil into fry pan over medium-high heat, add fish and cook a couple of minutes each side. Let it cool slightly before breaking into chunks and adding to salad. Enjoy!