Saturday, 31 October 2009
Thursday, 29 October 2009
I also went to Lille for the day yesterday with my Mum and sister and we had a fantastic time. We ate lunch at La Compostelle, where I had an Asian beef salad and then dourade with red pepper and walnut pesto, a cream sauce and courgette risotto, and they were both delicious. We then looked round the shops and went to the supermarket where I stocked up on all the things I love but can't buy here. We also had tea in Meert and bought the most delicious cakes to eat on the train on the way back, it was a little tricky to eat them as we had no forks, but really tasty none the less.
As the evenings get colder here, although this week its been unseasonably warm, I start making lots of soups and casseroles. I love Asian style soups, especially noodle soup. This one was originally just a fairly plain Chinese fish soup with no noodles and not much veg, so I used the basic recipe and jazzed it up a little, adding egg noodles, spinach, sugar snap peas and mange tout. It was delicious.
Chinese Style Fish Noodle Soup (Adapted from Ken Hom's Hot Wok)
1 egg white
2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground white pepper
1 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp cornflour
1.2 ltrs chicken/veg/fish stock
2 tbsp light soy sauce
2 tsp shaoxing rice wine
2 tsp finely shredded root ginger
2 tbsp finely chopped spring onions
1 tsp chilli oil
2 tsp rice vinegar
mixed stir fry veg
2 packets of straight to wok noodles
Remove the skin from the fish fillets and then cut them into small pieces, about 2.5cm square. Combine the fish, egg white, salt, pepper, sesame oil and cornflour and mix well. Refrigerate for at least 20 mins.
Pour the stock into a wok and bring it to a simmer. Add the soy sauce, shaoxing rice wine, ginger and spring onions and simmer for 30 secs. Then add the veg and noodles and simmer for 2 mins.
Add the fish and stir gently for 1 min. As soon as the fish turns white, immediately turn off the heat. Add the chilli oil and vinegar. Ladle the soup into individual bowls, garnish with fresh coriander and serve immediately.
Monday, 26 October 2009
Anyway on Saturday night I made a delicious rabbit casserole from a recipe found through google. It was Provencal Rabbit Stew with Olives and Capers from We Are Never Full.
It ended up being a little too salty for me, but I made a fantastic pasta sauce by watering down the leftover liquid and adding sour cream to the leftovers for dinner yesterday.
This weeks Menu Plan Monday is like normal full of quick and easy meals. My Mum is coming to stay on Tuesday night as we are off to Lille for the day on Wednesday. I told my friend that I was basically going to Lille to grocery shop and she laughed and said that was typically me! So on Tuesday evening I'm trying something different to feed my Mum! I bought green tea noodles and had absolutely no idea what to do with them, but I found a fantastic mushroom noodle recipe so I'm going to try that as a side dish with some miso salmon.
I am so looking forward to going to Lille and all the exciting ingredients I can buy which I can't get here, especially lots of cheese!
Lunch: Smoked Duck and Sesame Salad
Dinner: Goats Cheese and Sundried Tomato Stuffed Chicken Leg, Pasta with Pesto and Veg
Lunch: Onion Bhaji with Curry Fried Rice, Indian Spinach, Raita and Mango Chutney (Bento)
Dinner: Leftover Rabbit with Creamy Sauce and Pasta
Lunch: Pesto and Tomato Potato Salad, Sausages with Ketchup and Mustard (Bento)
Dinner: Miso Salmon with Green Tea Noodles and Mushrooms
Lunch: Out for lunch in Lille
Dinner: Picnic from Lille
Lunch: Hoi Sin Smoked Duck with Yakisoba Noodles (Bento)
Dinner: Pitta/Naan Bread Pizza with Goats Cheese, Spinach and Olives
Lunch: Quiche and Salad
Dinner: Goan Fish Curry, Lentil Curry, Rice
Lunch: Courgette Soup, Bread
Dinner: Chicken Nuggets, Baked Beans and Chips
Monday, 19 October 2009
I spent a couple of days at my parents last week and was cooked for by my Mum. We had a lovely swordfish dish on Tuesday night and then steak and chips on Wednesday, and there really is nothing better than a home made chip! The highlight of last week for me was the Shrimp and Grits, I completely forgot to take a photo of it, but I loved the texture of the grits, which I added loads of cheese and butter to. I adapted one of the recipes from Jamie's America, which I bought last week, which added meatballs to the recipe, and the meat and prawns worked really well with the smokey flavour of the Old Bay.
I also participated in a snack swap through Live Journal this month and received my box of goodies over the weekend. I swapped with a lady in Lancaster, Pennsylvania and all the snacks she sent were local to her area, the nearest five minutes away and the furthest an hour away!
Dinner: Out at an Asian Fusion Restaurant
Lunch: Macaroni Cheese, Salad
Dinner: Vegetarian Chilli in a Tortilla with Cheese and Sour Cream
Dinner: Chinese Style Fish Soup (Ken Hom)
Dinner: Steak Pie, Potato Gratin, Veg
Dinner: Chicken and Bamboo Shoot Stir Fry, Jasmine Rice (Chinese Food Made Easy)
Dinner: Out for dinner with a friend
Dinner: Spaetzle with Sausage and Tomato Sauce
Friday, 16 October 2009
Pizza (from Leiths Cookery Bible)
(makes 2 10 in Pizzas)
10g fresh yeast
1 tsp sugar
110ml warm water
200g strong flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil
1 quantity of pizza sauce
225g mozzarella, shredded
3 tbsp Parmesan, grated
a selection of toppings
Cream the yeast with the sugar and 2 tbsp of the lukewarm water.
Sift the flour with the salt and make a well in the centre. Pour in the yeast mixture, the remaining water and oil. Mix together to make a soft but not wet dough. Add more water or flour if necessary.
Turn out onto a floured surface and need well for about 5 mins until the dough is smooth. Place in a clean bowl and cover with greased cling film. Leave in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 230C. Divide the dough into 2. Roll each piece into a 10 in circle. Place on a greased and floured baking trays.
Crimp or flute the edges of the dough slightly to help keep in the filling. Spread with the pizza sauce. Sprinkle with the cheese and toppings and pour over a little oil.
Bake in the top third of the oven for 5 mins, then turn down the temperature to 200C and bake for a further 15 mins.
Wednesday, 14 October 2009
I have wanted to make pho for as long as I can remember, but never seemed to get around to it. I was also scared of how spicy the dish was, I'm not very good with chilli as I have said many times before, but with this recipe each person can control how much they put in which was fantastic. I invited my sister round for dinner and made this for us both, we loved being able to pick and choose what extras we put in. I have one criticism, not of the recipe itself, but probably more of traditional pho, we felt that it could have done with more green veggies and next time I make it I will add some to the accompaniments tray. Otherwise the broth was really flavourful and it was a delicious filling meal. Thank you to Jaden and to Daring Cooks.
This one was mine:
This one was my sisters:
Vietnamese Chicken Pho
For the Chicken Pho Broth:
2 tbsp whole coriander seeds
4 whole cloves
2 whole star anise
2 quarts (2 liters/8 cups/64 fluid ounces) store-bought or homemade chicken stock
1 whole chicken breast (bone in or boneless)
1 3-inch (7.5 cm) chunk of ginger, sliced and smashed with side of knife
1 to 2 tbsp sugar
1 to 2 tbsp fish sauce
1 lb (500 grams/16 ounces) dried rice noodles (about ¼ inch/6 mm wide)
2 cups (200 grams/7 ounces) bean sprouts, washed
Fresh cilantro (coriander) tops (leaves and tender stems)
½ cup (50 grams/approx. 2 ounces) shaved red onions
½ lime, cut into 4 wedges
Sriracha chili sauce
Sliced fresh chili peppers of your choice
To make the Chicken Pho Broth: heat a frying pan over medium heat. Add the coriander seeds, cloves and star anise and toast until fragrant, about 3-4 minutes. Immediately spoon out the spices to avoid burning.
In a large pot, add all the ingredients (including the toasted spices) and bring to a boil.
Reduce the heat to medium-low and let simmer for 20 minutes, skimming the surface frequently.
Use tongs to remove the chicken breasts and shred the meat with your fingers, discarding the bone if you have used bone-in breasts.
Taste the broth and add more fish sauce or sugar, if needed. Strain the broth and discard the solids.
Prepare the noodles as per directions on the package.
Ladle the broth into bowls. Then divide the shredded chicken breast and the soft noodles evenly into each bowl.
Have the accompaniments spread out on the table. Each person can customize their own bowl with these ingredients.
This is how it looked on the table. I was pleased because it gave me an excuse to use my Chinese set of dining ware, so we even had chopstick rests and bamboo ladles, and we used chopsticks to eat the meal!
Tuesday, 13 October 2009
I am coming to the last of the veg which is growing in the garden, the courgette plants are still producing, but thankfully at a much slower rate and size than before, my average size being a couple of inches. I also planted some sorrel quite late on and now that is producing with abundance, and I had no idea what to do with it. I came across this chicken recipe on the Good Food Channel website and it was delicious. The sauce worked really well with the flavours of the sorrel and the chicken. It was definitely the highlight of last week.
This week I'm home for a couple of days, so no cooking and I'm also trying shrimp and grits. I could only get instant grits at the supermarket, so I'm not sure how well they will turn out, but hopefully if I add enough butter and cheese it'll be ok!
Lunch: Out with my Mum and Sister (had Eggs Benedict)
Dinner: Out at Yo! Sushi
Lunch: Chicken, Green Bean and Pesto Pasta Salad
Dinner: Chickpea Curry, Curry Sauce and Rice
Lunch: Ham and Mustard Sandwich
Dinner: Home at my Parents
Lunch: Spaghetti, Chicken, Blue Cheese, Spinach and Beans, Salad
Dinner: Shrimp and Grits, with Old Bay Seasoning, Veg
Lunch: Mini Quiche, Potato Salad, Ham and Cheese Wraps
Dinner: Chinese Style Fish Soup (Ken Hom)
Lunch: Potato and Chicken Croquettes, Broccoli and Mushroom Noodles
Dinner: Grilled Sausages with Rosemary and Garlic Potatoes, Egg
Thursday, 8 October 2009
I actually ate this quite a while ago, but never got around to writing about it. It was really simple to make and a great one pan dish. I served it with mash potato, green beans, sugar snaps, samphire and mushrooms.
4 pork loin chops
2 tbsp butter
12 baby carrots, halved lengthways
1 medium apple, sliced and pips removed
1/3 cup maple syrup
Sprinkle the chops with salt and pepper. In a frying pan melt the butter over a medium heat and add the chops. Brown for 2 mins, turning once. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add carrots, apple and maple syrup. Cover and simmer for 8 mins or until done.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the chops, carrots and apples to a warm plate bring the syrup mixture to a boil, and boil gently for 1-2 mins until thickened. Pour over the chops and serve.
Tuesday, 6 October 2009
Lunch: Prawn, Broccoli and Noodle Stir Fry
Lunch: Courgette and Watercress Soup, Bread Roll
Dinner: Japanese Beef Curry with Noodles
Lunch: Bagel with Lox Spread and Capers
Dinner: Chicken and Sorrel with Crème Fraiche, Potatoes, Veggies
Lunch: Salmon Ravioli with Peas and a Crème Fraiche
Dinner: Out with my Dad
Lunch: Special and Egg Fried Rice, Chicken Nuggets with Orange Sauce
Dinner: Spinach and Feta Pasty, Veg
Lunch: Pesto and Prawn Pasta Salad
Dinner: Out? If not Chickpea Curry, Curry Sauce, Rice
Lunch: Quiche, Salad
Dinner: Out with my Dad and Sister
Saturday, 3 October 2009
Thursday, 1 October 2009
This Coriander Potatoes with Chickpeas and Tomatoes dish was definitely one of the tastiest chickpea recipes I've tried. The egg wasn't in the original recipe, but I added it in for a bit more protein and it went really well with the flavours of the dish.
Coriander Potatoes with Chickpeas, Tomatoes and an Egg on top (adapted from Australian Women's Weekly Lebanese Cooking)
1 large onion, sliced thinly
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
4 medium potatoes, sliced thickly
400g tin chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp sugar
1 1/4 cups/310ml water
300g tin of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh coriander leaves