Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Shot Glasses!!!!!

Maybe this is one for Deb to try on her return, to serve one of her flavoured vodka's in!

Chocolate covered strawberry shot glasses.

Sam x

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Hey Sam!

Hey honey, having a hot and sunny time in the Maldives -  any cooking going on ( lots of eating going on here - Bar - b - que night tonight )

See you soon
Mummmmmmmmmmy xxxxxxx

Friday, 23 September 2011

Red Wine Dressing

Another quick and easy dressing for any salad, especially one with cheese.

150ml olive oil
50ml red wine vinegar
2 tsp Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper

Mix all ingredients well and keep in the fridge until you need it.

Emergency Sour Cream

This is a very quick cheat (quicker than going to the shops) for when we run out of sour cream:

100ml double cream
1 tsp lemon juice (I've hear you can use vinegar as well)
A pinch of salt and pepper

1. Whip the double cream until it is stiff, but not like butter. I think of sour cream as I'm whipping to keep reminding myself of the consistency.
2. Add the lemon juice and seasoning.

It's obviously not the real thing, but if the shops are closed, or too far away, then this is a very suitable substitute.

Sam x

Monday, 19 September 2011

Whilst The Cat is Away

So mum (Debs) is on holiday in the Maldives, hence the lack of posts recently.

I had hoped that being at her house for two weeks would mean I'd be in the kitchen non-stop, but with work etc, I haven't done a thing!

I did however buy some bargains the other day. Six cookery books for £1 from my local junk shop. Some were pretty standard but others really interesting. Here are a few of the more interesting recipes:

Offal: Gourmet Cookery from Head to Tail.
Jana Allen and Margaret Gin
ISBN: 0 273 00958 3

Brain Caviar

3/4 pound calf brains
white wine vinegar
3 tablespoons salad oil
1 or more cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
2 tablespoons finely chopped chives
2 tablespoons finely chopped black olives
salt and white pepper to taste
3 tablespoons chopped parsley

Soak, clean and parboil brains, using white wine vinegar in parboiling liquid. immediately plunge brains into cold water; pat dry with paper towels. Press cooled brains through a sieve.Slowly combine oil with brains, stirring all the while, until mixture is smooth. Then add garlic, lemon juice and peel, chives, black olives, salt and pepper. Mound  in a dish and garnish with parsley. Serve with unsalted melba toast.

English 18th Century Cookery
ISBN: 0 905694 41 4

Sailors Sauce

Chop a fowl's liver with two or three shallots, and a couple of truffles or mushrooms; simmer these in a spoonful of oil, two or three spoonsful of gravy, a glass of white wine, a little salt and coarse pepper; simmer it about half an hour, and skim it very well before using.

Plain Gingerbread

Mix three pounds of flour with four ounces of moist sugar, half an ounce of powdered ginger, and one pound and a quarter of warm treacle; melt half a pound of fresh butter in it; put it to the flour and make it a paste; then form it into nuts or cakes or bake it in one cake.

The other books I bought were:

The San Francisco Chronicle Cookbook
Michael Bauer and Fran Irwin
ISBN: 0 8118 1445 9

A nice collection of recipes from the San Francisco Chronicles food section.

All About Meat
Leon & Stanley Lobel
ISBN: 0 15 604600 8

Apparently written 'by the most famous butchers in America' this is a very detailed book with lots of information on techniques!

DK Pocket Encyclopedia of Cooks Ingredients
Adrian Bailey
ISBN: 0 86318 435 9

This book brilliant! An indispensable guide to ingredients!

The All American Cookbook
Martha Lomask
ISBN: 0 86188 121 4

Quite a dated book. The recipes don't seem to have aged all that well, but there a few classics in there.

The idea of eating brains in there normal form turns my stomach slightly, but I'd give it a go. Brain caviar sounds bloody lovely though! I'll have to venture further than the Tesco meat isle to find calf brains... Where does one buy brains from in 2011?

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Got to have a go at this

Probably after the holiday now as Mr Debs is about to hop off to Glasgow on business but this recipe from the same programme looks delish. Naanwich -  not a place in Cheshire.


Slow Roasted Pork

I saw this prepared yesterday on Saturday Kitchen cooked by James Martin. I have to say I have cooked a number of recipes by him  - mostly seen on this programme and they are pretty much faultless. I bought a smaller joint of pork as I only cooked it for 4 people and only had to adjust the cooking time a  little.

Serves 4
2-3kg piece shoulder of pork

3 bramley apples
75mls cider
2 tbpns sugar
salt to taste

1 Sweetheart ( or savoy) cabbage
50g butter
75mls water

Preheat oven to 150c/300f.Gas mark 2
Score skin on pork with a sharp stanley knife and sprinkle with salt
Place pork in a nice deepish roasting tin and pour in ( not on top of pork ) 600mls water.
Cover tin with foil and pop in oven for about two and a half hours. Leave well alone.
After two and a half hours, take pork out of oven and turn oven up to 200c 400f/ Gas mark 6.
Remove foil and place pork back in oven for a further hour and a half. Leave alone.

In the mean time core, skin and chop apples and place in a small saucepan with cider and butter and bubble away for about 3-5 minutes. When apple is nice and soft add sugar and salt to season and take off heat.

Slice cabbage thinly and, about ten minutes from serving,  melt butter in a frying pan and add cabbage. Stir to cover with butter and add water. Just stir about for about 6ish minutes until cabbage is just tender.

The pork just falls apart so don't try and be too precious with it. Simply carve into generous chunks and serve with apple sauce and cabbage ( and fluffy mash) .

I had to resist the temptation to peek, baste, generally mess with this but boy is it worth it. The pork is so very tender. Another great recipe tried from this programme.


Friday, 9 September 2011

Maldives here we come

Not a whole lot of blogging -  or indeed cooking going on at the moment due to imminent holiday of a lifetime to the Maldives ( sorry Sam ). I have cooked loads of easy to prepare meals for the freezer for the coming two weeks but the maintenance of this blog is now in your hands Sam...DO SOME BLOGGING!!

P.S. As I remember there is a lot of curry going on in the Maldives YIPEEEEEEE

Can't wait

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Bye Bye lovely people

Just got back from a lovely evening spent with workmates at Frankie and Bennys, ok it's not exactly gourmet nosh but the company sometimes is all you need. Losing some good people here in the name of progress - it's too sad. Work politics suck.


P.S. Actually food was pretty good and serving staff were very patient.

mmmmmmm crab

Mr Debs came home with a couple of luvverly orkney crab so this lovely recipe from James Martin was  the flippin perfect  recipe

Serves 4
300mls chicken stock
300mls fish stock
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 shallots, finely chopped
25g butter
280g risotto rice ( arborio or carnaroli )
100mls white wine
2 green chillies, deseeded and chopped
a pinch of curry powder
half a tspn Thai green curry paste
1 stick lemongrass
3 kaffir lime leaves
2 tbsn mascarpone cheese
50mls double cream
15g each of fresh flat leaf parsley and coriander finely chopped
450g fresh white and brown crab meat
115g parmesan cheese
juice of 1 lime
salt and pepper to taste
chilli oil

Heat the two stocks together in a pan, on the hob.
Meanwhile, sweat the garlic and shallots in the butter for about a minute, add the rice, then the wine with the green chillies, curry powder, curry paste, lemongrass and lime leaes. Stir together to coat the rice with fat.

Add the warm stock, a ladle at a time, while simmering and stirring. Stir, and keep adding stock,until the rice is cooked which should take about 15-20 minutes.

Once the rice is cooked but still with a little bite add the mascarpone, cream, herbs,crab and parmesan. Adjust with a little more stock and cream if necessary then add the lime juice and stir well.

Plate risotto and drizzle with a little chilli oil and sprinke a little extra parmesan.

This is a super recipe and to be honest it dosn't need anything else, I think it may well become a regular feature.


Sicky poorly

I've been a little bit poorly for a few days so not much blogging going on - all ok now so back into it!