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Tenik [userpic]
Lamb Patties and Tomato Salad
by Tenik (tenik)
at April 6th, 2008 (01:23 pm)

This taste so good. Not so good a couple of days later when you still have leftovers because you used 500g mince even though you were cooking for one and they kind of dried out a bit in the fridge, but amazingly good freshly cooked. Works with beef mince as well because Tesco does not sell lamb mince. I didn't make the salad part, instead made up my own salad involving more ingredients. Recipe from the NZ Cuisine magazine.


Lamb Patties and Tomato Salad

Serves 4

500g (1 lb) lamb mince
1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
1 red onion, chopped
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp finely chopped rosemary leaves (you don't have to chop them yourself, they also sell the dried variety in the herbs and spices jars that keeps ages so is very handy if you can't have your own herb garden)
sea salt and cracked black pepper
4 rashers of bacon, trimmed and halved
vegetable oil for shallow frying
4 vine-ripened tomatoes, sliced
1 cup basil leaves
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp olive oil

Place the mince, breadcrumbs, onion, cumin, rosemary, salt and pepper in a bowl and mix well to combine. I also added one egg as it makes the mince mixture stick together better. Shape the mince mixture into eight patties and wrap with the bacon. Cover the base of a non-stick frying pan with oil and heat over medium heat. Add the patties and cook for 3 minutes each side or until cooked through. Place the tomatoes, basil, balsamic and olive oil in a bowl and toss to combine. Serve the salad with the patties and spoon over any remaining balsamic mixture.


Tenik [userpic]
Chunky Cod Goujons in Coconut Batter
by Tenik (tenik)
at April 2nd, 2008 (10:31 pm)

Cooking fish is hard. Especially when you're doing it from scratch and trying to deep fry it. This recipe came from a little cooking fish booklet that fell out of either delicious.* or the Sainsbury's Magazine and I can't remember which. It sounded good and coconut is one of my favourite flavours so I decided I had to try it. It was a nice meal, but didn't live up to my expectations. Getting the oil to exactly the right temperature is difficult and the batter didn't taste coconutty at all.


Chunky Cod Goujons in Coconut Batter

Serves 4
Ready in 20 minutes

Sunflower oil, for deep-frying
125g plain flour (that's about 1 cup)
1 3/4 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp Thai fish sauce
50g desiccated coconut
700g skinned thick cod fillet
25g plain flour, for dusting
1 lemon, halved, to serve

1. Fill a medium, heavy-based saucepan two-thirds full with sunflower oil. Heat until a cube of bread browns in 20 seconds.
Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl. Add 175ml cold water and the Thai fish sauce and gradually mix together to make a smooth batter. Stir in the coconut and another 1-2 tablespoons of water if the batter is a little stiff.

2. Cut the cod into chunky strips, about 2.5cm across. Season with salt, then lightly dust with the flour and shake off the excess. Dip the fish into the batter, then fry in batches (4-5 pieces at a time) for 5 minutes, until crisp and golden brown. Lift out and drain briefly on kitchen paper.

3. Divide the cod goujons between 4 serving plates. Serve with the lemon halves to squeeze over and some oven-baked chunky chips and sweet chilli sauce, if you like.


According to wikipedia goujons is originally a French word which means small, fried strips of fish. So you could also call this Coconut Fish Strips, but it doesn't sound as fancy.

*Naming a magazine with a title which includes a full stop is stupidly pretentious. They even put the full stop in when it's in the middle of a sentence. What's next? People putting full stops in the middle of their names?

Tenik [userpic]
Sam's Funeral Cakes
by Tenik (tenik)
at March 24th, 2008 (10:17 pm)

This recipe comes from copperbadge (reposting with permission). I've made these a couple of times before, but now that I live in a country that has pomegranates in the supermarket I can make them properly. When I was in NZ I had to substitute in mixed berry juice. This time not only did I buy the correct juice, but also a little punnet (100g) of pomegranate seeds to add to the mixture as I thought they might add an interesting texture. They did and tasted great (the seeds turn a purply colour after baking). I also didn't have time for fiddly decorating, so just made some simple almond icing with icing sugar, water and almond essence.


Sam's Funeral Cakes

Dark chocolate cake flavoured with fragrant pomegranate, topped with marzipan bones and skulls. This cake is to be cut into pieces or baked as cupcakes, wrapped in white paper, and given to mourners at the funeral or eaten on holidays of the dead (Hallowe'en, etc). The dark chocolate adds a bitter edge to the cake, while pomegranates and almonds symbolise death and resurrection.

Makes 12 cupcakes or one 9" round cake.

3/4 cup sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup dark cocoa powder*
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup pomegranate juice and 1/4 water, combined

* I've been mentally mucking about with melted dark chocolate, but I think chemically it's kind of a bad idea and anyway the idea is that this cake is easy to make.

Frosting glue:
1/2 lb confectioner's sugar
2 egg whites

Marzipan for skulls and bones.

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour a baking pan or cucpcake pan. I made cupcakes, myself, so I haven't tested the Cake yet.

2. Put water and juice into a saucepan and set to heat on high. I actually used a bit more than a quarter cup up juice, because I knew a bit would evaporate.

3. Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl.

4. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla to the dry mixture; whisk until blended. The mixture will be tough and rather tarlike in consistency.

5. When water/juice mixture boils, add it to the thick mixture and whisk until blended, which may take some time. The batter will end up very thin. Pour batter into prepared pan(s); cake will rise, so be careful.

3. Bake 15 minutes for cupcakes or 30 for pan(?) until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool before removing, as the cake is very soft and spongy.


4. For frosting "glue", add egg whites to confectioner's sugar one at a time, mixing with a wooden spoon, then whisk with an electric mixer until smooth. If runny, add more sugar; it should be almost pastelike.

5. Shape marzipan into small skulls, bones, scythes, and other death-related symbols. Attach to individual pieces of cake using frosting glue in a pastry bag.


Note: I used 180 degrees Celsius and the mixture only made 10 cupcakes. I think maybe too much of the juice evaporated so next time I'll add more. Also couldn't find baking soda so had to use extra baking powder instead, so maybe they didn't rise as much as before. Although still taste light and fluffy.

What they look with sculls etcCollapse )

Tenik [userpic]
Grilled Cajun Beef Salad
by Tenik (tenik)
at March 24th, 2008 (05:00 pm)
Tags: ,

I decided to treat myself and make a salad that required an expensive piece of steak. This recipe serves four and although the steak was expensive, one 300g steak was enough for three nights of salad for dinner and so ended up being a reasonably priced meal. But if you don't love salad as much as I do, I'd suggest making this when you have more than one person to serve so you don't get sick of it after three nights in a row. The recipe originally came from the Foodtown magazine.

It tasted good and looked nice, but did not turn out as great as the picture. I think I have yet to master the art of grilling steak so perhaps this meal will improve after additional makings.


Grilled Cajun Beef Salad

4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp each: salt, cumin, coriander, paprika
pinch each: cayenne, freshly ground nutmeg
1 tbsp olive oil
2 thick sirloin steaks or New York Cut steaks, 600-700g in total

400g pumpkin or kumara (sweet potato for non-kiwis) cubes
2-3 tbsp butteroil really any oil will do
1 packet Mesclun Salad mix I used French style crispy lettuce from Tescos
12 cherry tomatoes, halved or use the whole punnet, because 12 is nothing!
chopped fresh herbs to taste
French dressing to taste I made my own. Bit of white wine vinegar, bit more of olive oil, salt, freshly ground pepper and some dried chopped up parsley.

Combine the garlic, seasonings and olive oil and rub over the steaks. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or overnight.

Return the meat to room temperature before grilling for 4-5 minutes each side.

Meanwhile, roast the pumpkin or kumara in butteroil at 190 (degrees Celsius) in an electric frypan for about 8 minutes, until golden and cooked. or if you don't have an electric frypan like me then you can roast it in the oven where things are normally roasted. I thought frypans were for frying.

Slice the steak into strips diagonally across the grain and serve mixed with the greens, roasted vegetable, cherry tomatoes and dressing.

Serves 4.


Tenik [userpic]
Free-form Rhubarb and Blackcurrant Pies
by Tenik (tenik)
at March 18th, 2008 (03:44 pm)
Tags: ,

As you may or may not know, last Friday was Pi day. To celebrate this maths holiday I made pie. I hadn't had rhubarb for a couple of years, and seeing as it is currently rhubarb season it was perfect timing to try out this pie recipe I cut out of the NZ Cuisine magazine awhile back. It turned out extremely delicious.


Free-form Rhubarb and Blackcurrant Pies

400g(14oz) rhubarb, trimmed and chopped
1/3 cup blackcurrants (I used a whole tin because fresh ones were not available)
1 cup caster sugar
2 tablespoons cornflour (cornstarch)
4 x 200g(7oz) sheets ready-prepared sweet shortcrust pastry, defrosted
1 egg, beaten
1 tablespoon caster sugar, extra

Preheat the oven to 200C(390F). Combine the rhubarb, blackcurrants, sugar and cornflour in a bowl and toss to coat. I'd suggest (especially if you are using canned blackcurrants) to get out as much moisture as possible. My pie mixture was a little too runny and one of the pies collapsed while cooking.

Use a 19cm (7.5in) round cookie cutter to cut out a circle from each sheet of pastry. Who seriously owns a 19cm cookie cutter? Look at a ruler. Yes, that is 19cm. Ridiculously enormous cookies. Just judge approx 19cm using a ruler as it definitely doesn't need to be a perfect circle.

Divide the rhubarb mixture between each pastry circle and, using your hands, bring the edges of the pastry together and press to partially enclose the rhubarb. Brush the pastry with the egg and sprinkle with the extra sugar. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the pastry is golden.

Makes 4.


Tenik [userpic]
Sausages with Oregano, Mushrooms & Olives
by Tenik (tenik)
at March 15th, 2008 (01:11 pm)

I got this recipe from mad_martha and am reposting it with her permission. I made it without the olives (as I still have a childish dislike of olives) for dinner on Thursday night and it was amazing. I was expecting something good but it exceeded those expectations and was so very easy to make. I had it with mashed vivaldi potates with butter and lots of cheese.


Sausages with Oregano, Mushrooms & Olives
(Original Version)

I think this came from BBC Good Food Magazine although I cut it out of the Daily Mail.

Serves 4


Reduced-fat sausages - 450g pack
Sunflower oil - 1 tsp
Dried oregano - 2 tsp
Garlic cloves - 2, sliced
Chopped tomatoes - 450g can
Beef stock - 200 ml
Pitted black olives - 4 oz
Mushrooms - 500g, thickly sliced


1. Using kitchen scissors, snip the sausages into meatball-sized pieces.

2. Heat a large pan and fry the pieces in the oil for about 5 minutes until golden all over.

3. Add the oregano and garlic, fry for 1 minute more, then tip in the tomatoes, stock, olives and mushrooms.

4. Simmer for 15 minutes until the sausages are cooked through and the sauce has reduced a little. Serve with mashed potato or pasta.

Martha's Version

Serves 2 or 3.


Good Cumberland chipolatas - However many you fancy
Olive oil - A splash
Dried mixed herbs - 2 tsp
Onion- 1 chopped roughly
Garlic cloves - An excessive amount, sliced
Chopped tomatoes - About half a can
Vegetable stock - 100 ml or so
Button mushrooms - A handful, halved


1. Realise that you do not have reduced-fat sausages, black olives, sunflower oil, beef stock cubes or oregano. Decide that it doesn't matter.

2. Snip some delicious Cumberland chipolatas (or your sausage of choice) into meatball sized pieces.

3. Heat a large, deep frying pan and fry the pieces in the oil for about 5 minutes until golden all over.

4. Add the mixed herbs, garlic and onion, fry for 1 minute more, then tip in the tomatoes, stock and mushrooms.

5. Discover that you forgot to slice the mushrooms, quickly scoop them out again with a teaspoon and slice them in half. Return them to the pan.

6. Simmer for 15 minutes until the sausages are cooked through and the sauce has reduced a little. Take a moment to congratulate yourself that the sauce actually does reduce.

7. Serve on thick slices of toasted crusty bread.


Tenik [userpic]
Bacon, Water Chestnut and Spinach Salad
by Tenik (tenik)
at March 11th, 2008 (07:33 pm)
Tags: ,

I adore salad so I thought I start things of with one of my favourites. Originally this recipe was the spinach salad in Alison and Simon Holst's Sensational Salads, but I've adjusted a few things.


Bacon, Water Chestnut and Spinach Salad

Approx 4-6 servings*
400-500g fresh spinach leaves
4-6 rashers of bacon
250g button mushrooms
Can of water chestnuts

Olive oil (2-3 tbsp)
Red or White wine vinegar (2 tbsp)
Rock Salt
Grainy mustard (2-3 tsp)
A bit of ground garlic (the stuff you can get in tubes is really handy!)

You probably don't need this part.
Just make sure the spinach and mushrooms are washed. Grill the bacon and break into pieces (let it cool before adding to salad). Slice up the mushrooms, water chestnuts and avocado. Put everything together.

Make the dressing by mixing everything together in a screwtop jar. Don't pour over the salad until right before serving.


*I usually only make it for one so do not know how exact these amounts are, but when it comes to salad it's easy to just guess.

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