Sunday, November 18, 2012

roast chicken on puy lentils

Allow me to introduce you to your new favourite way of cooking roast chicken.

one chicken
one lemon

one cup of french puy lentils
half a red onion, chopped
3 slices smokey bacon
1 cup white wine
1/2 cup chicken stock

Saute onion and bacon in a little oil. If you've got an ovenproof pan with low-ish sides, use this - then you can cook the chicken in it afterwards (less washing up!).

When the onion's soft, add the lentils and stir. Add wine, stir for a minute, add chicken stock. Season with salt and pepper.

Wash and dry the chicken, drizzle with a little olive oil and season generously with salt and pepper. Place the chicken on top of the lentils. Put half the lemon in the chicken's cavity. Slice the other half of the lemon and lay on the breast of the chicken.

Roast in a 180 degree centigrade oven for a good hour or until the chicken's cooked. Add extra chicken stock if the lentils seems to dry out - you want them to always be covered with liquid. Remove the lemons in the last 10 - 15 minutes so the skin browns.

Remove chicken and let it rest. Stir the lentils, over a heat if you need to reduce the liquid.

Cut up chicken and serve.

This is delish. It's very similar to how I cook lamb on a bed of lentils, but using white wine and chicken stock instead of red wine and beef stock adds a whole different taste to the lentils.

So good.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

pulled pork recipe

I am very suggestible. If there's a food trend - I want to try it. Hence, pulled pork had to be on the menu. I bought a big shoulder of pork at the farmer's markets today and did this to it.

Make a dry rub of two tablespoons of brown sugar, 1 teaspoon of dried thyme, 1 tsp of smoked paprkia and a good pinch of salt. Rub it into all exposed areas of the pork - with a little for the skin. Then prepare the skin as per usual. (I rub it with olive oil, then salt it liberally).

Turn the oven up to the max heat. Pop in the pork on a rack, with some water in the bottom of the roasting tin. Roast for 15 mins then turn the heat down to as low as it'll go.

Cook it slowly for four to five hours.

Remove the skin and place it on an oven tray and turn the heat up again and give it a blast for 15 mins. Rest the meat. Then, cut it into chunks and, using two forks, tear it into shreds. This is hard work, but if you've roasted it long enough it should fall apart of its own accord.

We ate this with a radicchio, radish and red apple salad. Oh my. It'd also be awesome as traditional sliders on little buns - with some of the cooking liquid drizzled over top.


Sunday, September 2, 2012

beef macaroni casserole

This is one of my faves from the Leggo's Italian Cookbook. It's got curry powder in it (I know! And I used the classic Keen's Curry for a seriously retro touch) and it just adds that special something to the dish. This is a real winner with my family - even the green capsicum tastes awesome. Seriously!

1 tblsp butter
1 large onion, chopped
1/4 cup chopped green capsicum
1 tsp curry powder
250g mince
2 tblsp tomato paste
1 cup chicken stock
2 cups cooked pasta (I use penne, farfalle or macaroni)
salt and pepper.

While butter melts in a frypan, chop up onion and capsicum. Toss them in and gently fry. When tender, set aside (make sure they're tender - don't get impatient. You want them soft, this really makes a difference.) Remove and set aside. Add mince and stir in curry powder. Fry away till meat is browned. Pop vegies back. Add tomato paste, chicken stock, pasta and salt and pepper. Mix it up well. Put the lot in a buttered casserole with a lid and bake 30 mins at 180 degrees.

Serves 4 - 6.

note: this only uses a really small amount of meat, so it's such a cheap meal. I serve it with a green salad and crusty bread. So yum.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

jamie oliver's favourite paella recipe

I've been promising a paella recipe for some time. But I haven't managed to cook one to my satisfaction, so I haven't shared it. Until now.

Last night I cooked Jamie Oliver's paella and oh my, it was gooooooood. I think the secret lies in the jar of fire-roasted red capsicum I used, it added a whole new dimension. I tweaked the recipe - left out the mussels and I didn't have any, nor did I have calamari - and I switched chicken breast for pork belly (I know - who am I? But hubby and daughter love chicken in paella...) Next time I'll add the full quota of seafood - and cook it for friends. It makes a big paella pan.

You do need a paella pan for this. It's the shape, size, depth etc that makes all the difference. I used arborio rice for this which worked well too. Here's the recipe:

serves 4-6

olive oil
2 raw chorizo sausages, thickly sliced
300g pork belly, skin removed, cut into 1cm pieces
1 green capsicum, diced
1 red capsicum, diced
5 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
1 onion, roughly chopped
small bunch of flat-leaf parsley, leaves roughly chopped, stems finely chopped
salt and pepper
a good pinch of saffron
400g mussels, scrubbed and debearded
300g paella rice
200g jarred red peppers, drained and tore into pieces
400g tin of tomatoes
1 litre chicken stock
12 large prawns, shells on
150g squid, cleaned and finely sliced
150g green beans, sliced thinly on an angle (or, just cut in half like I did - lazy)
1 lemon, cut into wedges.

Head a paella pan over medium heat an add the olive oil, sliced chorizo or pork belly (or chunks of chicken breast/thigh). When the chorizo browns add the capsicum, garlic, onion, and parsley stalks. Add salt and pepper and saffron. Fry gently for 10 mins, stirring every now and again.

Add the rice and jarred peppers and keep stirring for a few minutes so the rice is coated and yummy. Pour in the tinned tomatoes and 800ml of stock, seasoning again with salt and pepper. Bring it to the boil, then turn down heat to a simmer. Stir constantly for 15 mins. Stir every now and again from the outside of the pan to the middle, piling the rice up in the centre of the pan. Flatten it out, and start stirring again.

After 15 mins test the rice for doneness, it mustn't be chalky, but must be to-the-tooth-firm. Add mussels and prawns. Add extra stock if it's looking dry. Keep stirring and when mussels open and prawns turn pink add the squid and green beans and cook for 5 mins. Stir in chopped parsley and juice from half the lemon wedges. Bring to table with remaining lemon wedges on side.

Wait for applause.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

chicken and chorizo pasta bake

Okay, this is dead-simple and dead-delish. Ready?

1 chicken breast per person, cut into bite-sized chunks
2 chorizo, cut into bite-sized chunks
1/2 cup of dried pasta per person
1 jar of tomato pasta sauce (I used Five Brothers with caramelised onion - delish)
Grated cheese and bread crumbs to top.
See? Simple.

Cook pasta in boiling, salted water. I used farfalle pasta, but whatever tickles your fancy.

Sauté chorizo in a frypan till golden on the outside and set aside. Now, in the same pan, sauté the chicken breast pieces till golden on the outside and cooked through.

When pasta is cooked, drain it, and then pop back in the pan. Add the jar of tomato pasta sauce and stir. Now,  add the chicken and chorizo and stir. If there's any nice, crispy yummy-stuff at the bottom of the pan add a little water or wine, and stir till it comes off. Tip that into the pasta mix and stir. You want the sauce a little-more liquidy than you'd normally do for pasta in a bowl.

Add this to a greased baking dish. Top with a mixture of bread crumbs and grated cheese. Bake for 15 - 20 minutes - or until it looks all golden and awesome on top.

Serve with bread and a crispy salad.

Now, there's no reason why you couldn't add roasted capsicum and other yummy things to this dish - and you could make your own sauce if you fancy. I wanted something easy-peasy that was yum, and this served its purpose. Enjoy x

Saturday, August 4, 2012

chicken cacciatore recipe

I am loving the recipes I'm rediscovering in my retro Leggo's Italian Cookbook - and they're a total hit with the family. Plus, they're so simple my 12-year-old can cook them (and often does!) I'm trying this recipe this week:

Olive oil
1.5kg chicken pieces
2 medium onions, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
140g tomato paste
425g tinned tomatoes
salt and pepper
1 tsp oregano
1 bay leaf
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 1/4 cups of chicken stock

Heat oil in pan. Pop in the chicken and brown for around 5 mins. Remove from pan. Brown the onion and garlic. Return chicken to pan and add the tomato paste. Stir. Add tinned tomatoes Add salt, pepper, oregano, white wine and chicken stock. Stir, then cover and simmer for 1 hour. Don't let it boil.

Serve with buttered noodles, salad and a glass of white wine (Leggo's Italian Cookbook - I like the way you think!)

Saturday, July 7, 2012

slow cooker lamb pilaf recipe

I dug out my vintage Margaret Fulton Slow Cooker Cookbook this week with the aim of trying a new recipe. This one appeals to me. Hope you like it too.

500g Lamb shoulder, diced into 1.5cm cubes
2 onions, chopped
250g butter
1 cup long grain rice
2 cups stock (I'll use chicken)
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon melted butter
1/4 cup of flaked almonds, toasted (Margaret calls for 1/2 cup of raisins here, but I'm not a fan of fruit and meat. I'll sprinkle the toasted almonds on over the finished dish).

Saute lamb and onions in butter until meat is brown and onions soft and golden. Place meal in slow cooker and add more butter to frypan and fry rice for two minutes, stirring. Add to meat with stock, oregano and seasoning. Cover and cook on high for 2 - 3 hours. Give a light stir through several times during cooking. Combine tomato paste and melted butter and add to pilaf. Stir in raisins (if you're using) and cook for 15 minutes.

Serve sprinkled with almonds - perhaps with a grated carrot salad on the side.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

lamb kofta recipe

  • I remember watching MasterChef a few years back and they made this lamb kofta. I always forget to make it, and now I've forgotten the original recipe, but this is a classic. Simple, cheap and tasty - what's not to love?

  • 500g lamb mince
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 lemon, squeezed
  • 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs (made from day-old bread)
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, use your hands to squish everything through. 

Roll into sausage-like shapes and place on a tray lined with baking paper in the fridge for around 30 minutes. This helps them keep their shape when cooking.

Heat a little olive oil in a pan until nearly smoking, and cook these, turning regularly until they're all brown and yummy looking. Give them space, you might need to cook in two batches or more. When cooked, place them on a plate lined with kitchen paper.

Serve with warmed pitta bread (I use Jamie Oliver's method: wet a large piece of baking paper, squeeze, and place the pitta bread in the middle folding over so it's all enclosed. Heat in a moderate oven for around 10 minutes. They'll be a little crispy on the outside, soft on the inside). I also like to serve these with homemade tzatsiki (plain yoghurt, garlic, grated cucumber and squeeze of lemon) and a salad made with tomato, fresh parsley or baby spinach, and diced tomato. Hello.

Addendum: okay, I cooked these tonight and I was feeling totes lazy so I simply put them on an oven tray, at 200 degrees centigrade, for around 15 minutes, turning once. They were AWESOME. I'm cooking them this was in future.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

quick cassoulet recipe

Now there are many, many people who'll tell you about the most authentic recipe for cassoulet, mainly dependent on which region in France they're from. Some things stay the same: there's white beans, sausage and meat. Others change. This is a very quick version which serves to ensure a tasty, high-protein  meal is on your table in under an hour. I'll give the three-day version a shot some day, but for now, I'll go with this.

This recipe is based on the version I saw created at SandBar Newcastle Beach on its Friday night series: three dishes, two worlds, one night. A chef gives tips, serves up three courses from Europe, with matching Australian wines. We went to the opening night - The Pyrenees - sensational. Planning on visiting at least a few more - including Paris, Loire Valley and maybe The French Riviera.

Anyway, here's my dish:

2 tins of white cannelini beans, drained and rinsed
1 tin tomatoes, crushed
500g firm thick sausage (such as Toulouse sausage - but I used Mr Beak's Chorizo available from Woolworths - awesome)
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
250g rindless bacon, diced
a few stalks of fresh thyme
a couple of bayleaves
1 tsp smoked paprika
a sloosh of white wine
some vegie stock to thin out the sauce
Breadcrumb topping: 1 cup fresh sourdough crumbs mixed with 2tbsp of fresh, chopped parsley and two cloves of crushed garlic.

Sauté the onion, bacon and garlic in a heavy-based pot. I used my le crueset bistro pan. Remove and set aside. Sauté the sausage until browned all over, remove from heat and slice into one inch slices on the diagonal. Return the onion to the pan and add the beans, tomatoes, paprika, a good sloosh of wine. Stir it and add salt and pepper to taste. Thin with vegie stock if needed to taste. Add the sausage and top with breadcrumb mixture. Add to a 180 degree oven for 30 minutes, or until the top is all golden and gorgeous.

Serve with a green salad and crusty bread.

For variation you can add some cooked duck or chicken, pieces of pork or any meat you fancy - the sky's the limit. This was so good my husband's requested it a week after I last made it, and my 12-year-old bean-lover gobbled up every mouthful.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

quick chicken schnitzel recipe

One night I was trying to think of what to serve for dinner when a seven year old who's allergic to dairy came to dinner. I decided to try chicken schnitzel - it was a hit - and one I bring out every now and again to enthusiastic response. Here's what you need. This serves four, depending on the size of the chicken breast and how thinly you flatten it.

2 chicken breasts, sliced down the middle lengthwise, any excess fat or other erky bits removed.
plain flour seasoned with salt and pepper
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup of panko breadcrumbs (these japanese breadcrumbs are delish!)

After slicing the chicken breasts in half, place on a cutting board and pound out to about 1/2 cm thick using a meat mallet or rolling pin. Do it gently, moving around the breast to flatten.

Start by dipping in the flour, covering both sides well, and dust off excess.

Then dip in the beaten egg.

Finally, dip in the panko crumbs. Plain panko's yum, but you can also add grated lemon zest, chopped fresh parsley and garlic to pump up the flavour {this is gorgeous on pork cutlets}.

Place about 1cm of oil in a frypan. I like to use olive oil for the flavour. Wait until it's hot enough to brown a breadcrumb in seconds, then add the schitzel. Don't overcrowd, I usually cook one at a time. Cook for around 2 minutes, or until brown, then turn over and repeat. When browned, place on an oven tray and put in a 180 degree oven for around 5- 10 minutes. It depends how hot your oven is, and how thick your schnitzel is, but you want them cooked through.

Serve with mash, vegies or salad and a wedge of lemon or lime.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

simple shepherd's pie recipe

My daughter loves shepherd's pie, and will often request it when asked what she'd like on the meal plans. My father-in-law's also a fan, so it's a go-to recipe in this house. Simple too. Here's how I cook it. I usually use lamb mince, but if I've had a lamb roast and have leftovers I'll chop up the lamb meat. Delish. When lamb mince isn't available I'll use beef mince and call it cottage pie.

500g of lamb mince
1 onion, finely diced
1 carrot, finely diced
1 tin of tomatoes
1 tbsp of dried herbs
a teaspoon of worchestershire sauce
250g beef stock
2 bayleaves
3 - 5 large potatoes, cooked and mashed with butter and milk (and salt)

Preheat oven to 180 degrees.

First of all, gently fry the onion and carrot in a little olive oil, slowly, until it's really tender. Remove from pan and add mince and brown. Add vegies and stir. Then add stock, herbs, sauce, and diced tomotoes. Add a couple of bayleaves and salt and pepper to taste. Now, bring to the boil, then turn it down and simmer for 30 mins.

While this is simmering boil up the potatoes then mash them with a little butter and milk. You want a nice, firm mash for this. Add salt to taste.

Keep testing the mince. I add a little extra sauce and salt and pepper depending on whether it needs it or not. I'll sometimes add a little vegemite (!) or a splodge of tomato sauce if the flavour needs souping up.

Pour this into a pie dish, making sure you remove the bay leaves. Now, gently dollop the mash on top, you want a nice coverage of at least 2cm thick. I then use the tines of a fork to draw pretty patterns on the top to make a nice crispy, fluffy texture.

Bake in a moderate oven for around 30 minutes, or until the top is golden.

Serve with steamed greens and corn on the cob. Maybe with a piece of crusty bread to mop up any leftover sauce.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

retro meatloaf recipe

One day, for old time's sake, I decided to make a meatloaf. I threw a bit of this, and a bit of that, into a bowl, mixed it together with my hands, smooshed it together into a loaf tin and baked. It was a smashing success. It's one of those meals my daughter will often request (along with duck confit - eclectic tastes my gal) and is cheap, simple and delish. Here's how I make it:

500-750g beef mince
1 onion, grated or very finely diced
1 cloves garlic, grated or crushed
250g bacon, diced
1 carrot, grated
1 zucchini, grated
2 slices of bread, grated
1 tablespoon of dried, mixed herbs
a good sploodge of tomato sauce
a dash of worchestershire sauce
salt and pepper to taste
1 large egg

Simply add all the ingredients to a large bowl and smoosh them all together with your hands. Seriously! Wussy stirring with a wooden spoon won't combine it in quite the same manner.

Grease a loaf tin lightly with olive oil. Pack the mix into the loaf tin and cook in a 180 degree celcius, preheated oven for around 30 minutes - or until golden brown. The loaf should feel firm when you press down on it - that'll mean it's cooked through.

I like to put a baking tray 1/2 filled with water in the oven to help keen the meat moist. Another variation is that I'll line the loaf tin with bacon in a layer, and then bring the edges of the top so the meatloaf's completely surrounded with bacon. If I do, I leave out the chopped bacon in the meatloaf part - even I'm not that big a bacon fiend.

This recipe works just as well with chicken mince - but I'll also add some chopped pistachio nuts for interest. The amount of mince you use depends on the size of your loaf tin, and the size of your family. In an ideal world you'll make too much meatloaf for one meal and you'll have to have it sliced, on a sandwich, with pickles, the next day.

I serve this family favourite with mashed potatoes and steamed veg - and a nice brown onion gravy too.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

simple tuna noodle casserole recipe

Continuing on with my theme of being in love with retro recipes from the Leggo's Italian Cookbook from my youth, I'm giving another old fave a go. This tuna noodle casserole is a cinch to make, and hopefully my tuna-averse husband and daughter will enjoy it. Here's the recipe.

140g tomato paste
1 1/4 cups of water
170g tin of tuna
1/4 cup chopped green capsicum
1/2 cup chopped onion
185g cooked shell pasta
60g grated cheese
1/2 tsp basil (dried)
1/2 tsp oregano (dried)
1 tablespoon chopped parsley (fresh)

Combine water with tomato paste in a bowl. Add in the can of flaked tuna, green capsicum, onion and pasta. Then add grated cheese, basil, oregano, parsley, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir to combine.

Place in a casserole dish with a tight fitting lid and bake in a moderate, 180 degree oven for 35 minutes.

All this needs is some hot crusty bread and a green salad.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

low-fat potato bake recipe

I love a good potato bake - but I don't think it needs to be swimming in cream to taste good. Here's a simple way to up the yum-factor.

One and a half potatoes per person. Floury potatoes are good for this as the starch helps the sauce become more creamy.
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 tsp of finely diced fresh rosemary
3 cloves of garlic
Good quality chicken stock (you'll need enough to cover the potatoes)
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup pouring cream
1/4 cup of vintage cheddar, or your fave tasty cheese.

Slice potatoes very thinly and place an overlapping layer in the bottom of a greased baking dish. Add a sparse sprinkling of onion, some rosemary and season with salt and pepper. Repeat until dish is full. You can also include crispy pancetta or bacon if you'd like.

Once you've added all your potatoes, slowly pour in chicken stock until it just reaches the top layer. Now, pour the cream on the top layer. Cover with foil and bake in a 180 degree celcius oven for 30 mins. Test by piercing with a thin knife. If it goes in smoothly then all the potatoes are cooked.

Now, add a layer of cheese and pop it back in the oven, or under the grill, so the top browns and gets all fabulously golden.

Serve to an appreciative audience.

For a vego version you could totally use vegie stock - I just like the added richness chicken stock offers.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

my version of Nigella's carbonara

This is so simple, and yet so delish. Ready?

250g bacon, sliced and diced
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
2 eggs, lightly beaten
loads of parmesan

Put the spaghetti on to boil. While it's boiling, fry up the bacon in a little olive oil in a fry pan. When it's crispy add the crushed garlic and stir. Now, drain the spaghetti, leaving about 1/4 cup of the cooking water.

Remove pan from heat and add the spaghetti to the pan and toss in the eggs and stir, stir, stir until it becomes all creamy. If it needs thinning, add a small amount of the pasta cooking water and stir again.

Finally add parmesan and lots of cracked pepper, and serve.


That's it.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Spanish chicken recipe

I've been cooking variations of this for yonks. So simple, yet delish.

8 chicken pieces, with skin on. Ask your butcher to chop up a chicken for you - easier than doing it yourself really
2 chorizo sausages
1 spanish onion
3 Kipfler or similar waxy potatoes
1 red, yellow, or orange capsicum
six cloves of garlic
1 tsp or more smoked paprika 
1 lemon, cut into wedges
salt and pepper
Italian, flat leaf parsley to serve

Place chicken, skin-side up in the bottom of a lightly-oiled baking dish. Cut chorizo into bite-sized chunks and pop in between the chicken . Cut the capsicum into 1 inch chunks, cut onion into quarters, and quarter the peeled potatoes. Arrange all ingredients artfully around each other and sprinkle with smoked paprika. Dust with a good, generous pinch of salt (Maldon or Murray Pink Salt are my faves) and grind over plenty of black pepper. 

Cover with foil and bake in 180 degree fan-forced oven for 15 minutes, then remove foil and bake further 10 - 15 minutes until potatoes are nicely browned and the chicken's cooked through. Sprinkle with a good handful of roughly chopped parsley and serve with a nice green salad. 

This serves three to four people quite nicely thank you.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

slow cooked chilli con carne recipe

Okay, this has just been popped on to cook, so I thought I'd best write the recipe while it's fresh.

2 small-med onions (I used one purple and one brown), finely diced
1 red capsicum, finely diced
1 carrot, finely diced
a couple of cloves of garlic, finely diced
500g mince
1 tin tomatoes
1 tin kidney beans, drained
a slug of red wine
a slug of tomato sauce (or tomato paste - I was all out today)
2 bayleaves
1 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp cumin powder

First of all heat up your heavy based frypan. Then add a slug of olive oil and let it heat up. Turn the heat down and add the vegies and stir. Let soften for about 15 mins. Add spices and cook for one minute. Remove from pan and add mince, break up and let it brown.

Add the wine (1/4 cup-ish) and let alcohol cook off (2 mins). Add tinned tomatoes. Fill tin with water and add that to pan. Stir well and add tomato sauce and bay leaves. Bring to boil, add a lid and turn onto a low-heat to simmer.

Cook for around three hours. Add a tin of drained kidney beans 30 minutes before you're ready to serve. Stir well and adjust the seasoning to taste. Before eating, stir in two squares of dark chocolate and season to taste with salt and pepper. Add sweet chilli sauce if it needs more of a kick.

Serve with rice, corn on the cob, guacamole and some burritos. A dollop of sour cream or natural yoghurt's yummy too.

I've cooked this in my Le Creuset french oven, but it's just as good in a slowcooker. Just brown the meat and vegies and then tip it all into the slow cooker. You might need to use less water, probably only half the tin as it won't evaporate in the slow cooker like it does in a normal pot. Don't forget to cut a piece of baking paper the size of your slow cooker, wet it and place it on top of your chilli before adding your lid. I swear by this for non-dry meat.

Enjoy (especially you Melissa and PTT x)

Monday, April 2, 2012

caramelised pork recipe

One pork fillet, large enough to feed your family
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon of soy sauce
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
1 tablespoon of lime juice
A few drops of fish sauce, to taste
1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 dessertspoon of sweet chilli sauce
Udon noodles or rice
Asian greens

Mix all ingredients together and then marinate the pork fillet at room temperature for up to an hour (or until it comes to room temperature). Rub the marinade all over the pork to get it all sticky and well-covered.

Heat frypan until it sizzles. Pop in pork, turn the heat down to medium and cook on all sides until it's golden and cooked medium rare (or to your taste if you prefer pork cooked through). You might need to add a splash of water and cover the pan to get the pork to cook through. Don't worry, it just makes for extra sticky sauce!

Take the pork out and rest for up to 10 mins. Cook up some udon noodles and wilt some asian greens in the frypan you cooked the pork. Add a little water to deglaze the pan and the remainder of the marinade with some extra garlic and soy if needed.

Slice the pork into 2cm thick slices and serve on top of noodles and greens. Pour sauce over.

You can top with some crushed roasted peanuts and a few slices of chilli if you're feeling impressive and don't have littlies.

Use this recipe as a base and add more or less of your fave and less-fave flavours.


Tuesday, January 10, 2012

chicken with 40 cloves of garlic recipe

What do you do when you have too much garlic? Make a much-longed for Chicken with 40 cloves of garlic {and later, kick yourself that you hadn't made it sooner!}

First, melt butter in a heavy-based pan and add equal amount of olive oil.

Season a range of chicken pieces with skin-on. I used two Lillydale packs and removed the wings and popped them in a ziplock bag with a honey soy marinade for another dinner. Then adding a few pieces at a time, skin-side down, brown the chicken skin. Then carefully turn and brown underside. Then remove and set aside.

Deglaze the pan with a hearty sloosh of brandy. I'm guessing I used about 1/4 cup. And add the chicken pieces, skin-side up. Then break up the garlic cloves and shove them around the chicken, tucking in tightly - don't remove skins, you can squish the garlic out when it's cooked.. Strew with thyme stalks and then add enough white wine to almost cover {probably half a bottle.}

Pop on the lid and gently simmer for around 45 minutes. Then, remove the chicken, turn up the heat and reduce the sauce by half {oh. my. god. the sauce! tis delish!}. When sauce is thick, buttery and just bloody beautiful, add the chicken, pop on the lid and allow to heat through.

I served on a bed of creamy mash with loads of garlic bulbs on the side. Squooshed with a fork the garlic was creamy and just so divine mixed in with the mash and a forkful of chicken. Sorry for the crap last photo - too much steam and I was too desperate to eat.

Undoubtedly the best chicken dish I've ever cooked.


With a lightly dressed green salad on the side it's the perfect summer meal. Green beans, a winter feast.

Make it this week.