Coconut Poached Fish

It’s a pulled from the pantry quickie

to whip up this incredibly tasty meal!

When you finally fall through the door after a hectic day, just take a deep breath & have this fabuliciouz meal on the table in a jiffy!

Grab a large frypan & pour in a 400ml tin of coconut cream along with a tablespoon of fish sauce, a teaspoon of minced garlic, a teaspoon of white wine vinegar, the juice & zest of a lemon, a squirt of ginger paste (about a teaspoon), a tablespoon of brown sugar & 2 teaspoons of chilli flakes. Give it a jolly good mix & pop it over a medium heat to bring to the boil.

Once at the boil, turn down the heat to low & carefully place in 3 or 4 fish fillets. Simmer gently until they’re cooked through (about 10 minutes). Seafood is awesome because it actually tells you when it’s cooked by changing colour! How convenient is that?!?!?

Simply serve the fish on a bed of fluffy white rice, pour over the luscious sauce (don’t be stingy now) & hook in!

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Easy Peasy Chicken Bake

Some day’s you just gotta stop at the shop for a BBQ chook on the way home!

But here is what you can do with it when you get there.

Firstly, shred that BBQ chicken, make sure to get all the meat off it before disposing of the carcass. If your fam-bam is anything like mine, they’ll happily devour the skin for you!

Next, melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a frypan & then sauté off 6 finely diced bacon rashers along with 2 finely diced onions. When they’re all lovely & cooked down, add in the shredded chicken. Combine that lot before pouring in 3 cups of chicken stock, give it a jolly good stir, then leave to simmer away for 5 minutes.

Season ever so generously with salt & white pepper, then pop in enough cooked rice to thicken the sauce up. Set it aside to cool a wee bit while your oven heats up to 180c.

Pour the filling into a pie dish, then top with whatever crumb floats your boat before crowning with shredded cheddar cheese & a nice sprinkling of Parmesan cheese too.

Bake in the 180c oven for 20 minutes.

Pork & Lemon Dumplings

Fresh citrus enlivens the mouth in a light pork meatball.

Delicate enough to serve at a dinner party yet substantial enough to be a firm fam-bam fav, these wee morsels of fabuliciouz-ness are sure to be a hit on your menu!

Grab a mixing bowl & pop in 500g of pork mince along with 150g of crumb (whatever type floats your boat), 2 tablespoons of thickened cream, 1 finely grated onion, the zest & juice of a lemon (I absolutely love having our own lemon tree to pick fresh from!) and for the last part you will need to take just 6 tablespoons of chicken stock out of 600ml before setting the rest of it aside for later. Season it all generously with salt & white pepper.

Get your hands in their to give that lot a jolly good mix up, then shape into balls & set aside.

Pop a large frypan onto your burner & throw in 1 large chopped up carrot along with 1 large chopped up leek then cover those with the rest of that chicken stock you set aside. Carefully add in the balls, pop on a lid & gently simmer it all for 15 minutes.

Serve the dumplings over creamy mashed potatoes, remembering to scoop out the veggies & ladle over the soupy sauce!

Who says meat & 3 veg is boring?!?!?!

Chicken Korma

A flavour packed fabuliciouz meal that you can have on the table in just 30 minutes!

It’s another one from my post Ballet quickie arsenal! This taste of the Far East is slightly modified from the original Chicken Korma to make it just that wee bit lighter after a hard work out in the studio.

Start by peeling 4-5 potatoes (350g worth) before chopping them into either halves or quarters, depending on their size. You’re after nice wedges. Pop them in a saucepan & cover with water, then add a pinch of salt & bring the pot to a boil. Boil the potatoes for 10 minutes before draining them & set aside.

Now get a pot of water on the burner to bring to a boil for the rice. Once the water is at the boil, add a pinch of salt then pop your rice in to cook.

While that’s happening, crack on with the curry.

Heat a good glug (1 tablespoon) of oil in a large saucepan before adding in 1 finely chopped onion. Sweat the onion right down to release all it’s sweetness & make it nice & tender. Next, pop in 500g of chicken mince, mix it all in together & continue to fry off until it’s cooked through.

Add in half of a 290g jar of Korma Curry Paste & allow it to cook off for at least a minute whilst you stir it through to coat everything.

Toss in the potatoes along with 150ml of boiling water, pop the lid on & gently simmer for 10 minutes.

During this time, you’re rice will probably be ready, so drain that off & scoop into the bottom of your serving bowls ready to soak up the luscious flavours that await it!

After the curry has driven all your neighbours absolutely mad with envy on the aromas emanating from your kitchen, remove the lid & throw in a handful (75g) of fresh baby spinach leaves to gently wilt through as you cook for about another minute, stirring them in.

Then dish up, Chef! Ladle that glorious concoction over the rice & It’s Chompin Time!

Salad of Fish, Baby Spinach & Eggplant Fritters

A different kind of offering to your standard fish & chips!

The eggplant looked really good at the shop the other day, so I bought it without having a clue what I wanted to do with it, only that I’ve really missed plucking these delectable delights from my own garden, oh how I miss our wee veggie patch, so this is what I came up with.

First, you’ll need to peel & slice an eggplant into round discs. Lay them out on paper towel & sprinkle a generous layer of salt over them. This draws out all the bitter liquid so definitely not a step to skip! Place another paper towel over the top & leave them be for a good 15 minutes. After which, simply pat off all the excess salt & liquid from the eggplant discs.

Now they’re ready to crumb.

In one bowl make up an egg wash, so that’s 2 cracked eggs with a splash of milk & don’t forget to season generously with salt & white pepper before whisking.

In a second bowl, pop in whatever crumb floats your boat & also remember to season generously with salt & white pepper.

Dip an eggplant disc into the egg wash, then the crumb to completely coat it, & set aside. Repeat with all the discs.

Heat enough oil that it covers the entire bottom of your frypan & a wee bit more. We’re shallow frying people! Get those eggplant fritters in, cooking one side at a time before turning to the other side then setting aside to drain off any excess oil. Now I just sit a cooling wire over an oven baking tray to drain things when I fry, but plenty of people like to use good old paper towel too.

Now for the fish.

Into a plastic bag place about a tablespoon of flour & season it generously with salt, white pepper & paprika. Toss in a sliced up fish fillet & shake, shake, shake to coat all those fishy pieces!

Shallow fry off the fish in the same oil as you used for the eggplant & set them aside to drain as well while you crack on with the spinach.

Heat a good glug of Extra Virgin Olive Oil ever so gently in a small wok, or pan, whatever you have to hand, & fry off a couple of cloves of garlic before tossing in 500g of baby spinach leaves until they wilt down nicely. Take that off the heat & transfer into a mixing bowl. Season with salt & white pepper before finally squeezing over the juice of half a lemon & give it a jolly good toss to combine all those luscious flavours through.

So, I plop a healthy amount of spinach in the bottom of my bowl before crowning with the fried delights.

On a side note, you probably don’t want to do what I did on this one which is to take a lovely photo to share, be half way through greedily devouring the meal & suddenly remember the cheese sitting on the bench which was supposed to go on top! Crumbled Fetta would of been lovely over this dish. Cest la vie.

Lentil & Egg Curry

A flavour packed dish that’s perfect for sharing.

You’ll need to start this one a day ahead so some prior planning needs to be thought about when wanting this wee number.

Place 1 cup of dried lentils into a bowl, cover with water & allow to soak overnight.

Next day, drain the lentils & let’s get our kitchen smelling like a Curry House!

Peel & finely dice up 2 onions.

Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a saucepan, add 1 tablespoon of curry powder, give it a quick mix then add in those onions. Cook them off until they have caramelised right down so that they release all their sweetness. That usually takes about 10 minutes or so, cooking nice & slow.

Splash in 3/4 cup of water along with the lentils, give that lot a jolly good stir then pop on a lid.

Cook, ever so gently, over a low heat for 45 minutes.

Meanwhile, hard boil 4 eggs then peel & set aside.

When the curry is ready, simply slice up the eggs & add them to the pot with a good pinch of salt for seasoning & stir in ever so gently.

Serve this one hot with lovely flat breads or pappadums to pick up the curry with.

Chicken Mornay

This absolute Classic Comfort Food has been somewhat lost to the

inferior supermarket frozen cardboard box variety.

Well, no more!

You will be amazed at just how much more flavour you will enjoy from making the

proper, old skool, recipe at home.

I love busting out my old recipe books from the 1970’s to take a gander about the food from my childhood & then introducing fond classics to Hubby & Mini-Me. Being a farm kid, we did things a wee bit differently to the city folk, but simple food is quite often the best food.

Start off by dicing up 2 succulent chicken thighs into small, bite sized pieces. Heat a splash of oil in a fry pan, drop in a teaspoon of minced garlic to gently warm through before adding in the chicken. Season it ever so generously with salt & white pepper then cook it off properly & set aside.

Next, into a large saucepan goes 1 tablespoon of butter. Gently melt that over the lowest heat setting possible then remove & add in 1 tablespoon of plain flour along with 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Give it a jolly good stir to incorporate before popping back onto that lowest heat setting & continue stirring for a minute or so to cook off that flour taste. Pour 1 & 1/4 cups of milk into the pot slowly, stirring continuously to avoid lumps. Squeeze in the juice of 1/2 a lemon & then season with salt & paprika to your taste (if you have a Hungarian Hubby, you’ll be heavy handed on the paprika!).

Add the chicken to the sauce & stir through. You may like to increase the heat to a medium flame at this point, just to give it a wee bit of thickness.

Pop the mix into a heatproof oven dish, sprinkle with breadcrumbs & finally crown with shredded cheddar cheese & grated Parmesan.

That goes into the oven just to brown lightly & melt that luscious cheese.

Serve your Classic Chicken Mornay with rice on the side.

I like to boil my rice in chicken stock with a handful of frozen veggies thrown in & allow the grains to absorb all the liquid to plump up full of flavour!

Red Pork Curry

A spicy delight to tickle your tastebuds!

It is so easy to whip up a fabuliciouz curry to rival any take-away that you’ll be dusting off your wok in no time! The secret to cooking this quick, yet healthy, cuisine is prior preparation. Have all of your ingredients ready to go before you start as wok cooking is stepping into the culinary fast lane!

Start off by handing Hubby a 500g packet of pork rashers to go sacrifice at the alter of burnt offerings (aka BBQ). You want that smokey char that only grilling can give & it also renders down the fat a wee bit.

Meanwhile crack on with the rest of the preparation.

Have a 400ml tin of coconut milk open & ready to go.

Keep your fish sauce on stand by near the cooktop along with a jar of red curry paste.

Peel 3 good sized carrots before slicing them on the angle, just to be fancy, & set them aside in a bowl.

In another bowl, place a sliced up long red chilli, also cut on the angle.

Yet a third dish will contain pineapple & lychee – grab 4 lychees out of a tin & chop them up roughly & then grab yourself a small tin of pineapple rings, there’s usually about 4 rings in there, & chop them up too.

Finally, have half a dozen kaffir lime leaves shredded up. I like to cheat by using the pre-done ones in the jar.

When Hubby brings in those now perfectly cooked pork rashers, slice them up so they’re also ready to toss into your wok when it’s their turn.

Now we are ready to cook!

Pour half of the coconut milk into your wok over a medium heat & heat it through.

Next, add in 3 tablespoons of the red curry paste & give it a jolly good stir to incorporate.

Pop in the carrots & let it all gently simmer away for about 5 minutes. You’re giving the carrots time to cook through as they take the longest whilst also cooking off the spice paste.

When you see the oil of the paste start to separate on the surface, it’s time to drop in the pork, Lychees & Pineapple along with the rest of the coconut milk & a splash of the fish sauce. You can also add in a tablespoon of the lychee juice from the tin if that’s what floats your boat but you don’t have too if it’s not your kind of flavour.

Bring that lot to the boil before throwing in your chilli & cook for another few minutes.

Last, but certainly not least, it’s time to stir through those kaffir lime leaves just before removing from the heat.

Serve this absolutely fabuliciouz spicy, saucy, soupy curry with fluffy white rice.

Taco Pizza

The perfect partnership for Friday night drinks!

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Honestly…..what else can be said about this glorious mash up of two totally fabuliciouz fav’s except GET IN MY BELLY!

This recipe is so deadset simple even Mini-Me can make it so either get the kids in the kitchen for a family night or keep it up your sleeve for when you need that post night out munchie fix getting home!

Simply brown off 500g of chicken mince in a hot frypan, seasoning with an entire packet (30g) of Taco Seasoning Mix & then set that aside.

Grab a bowl & mix together 1 can of refried beans with 1/2 cup of salsa then spread that onto a pizza base to use as your sauce.

Sprinkle with some shredded cheddar cheese then pop the spiked up mince on top before, go on, being generous again with the shredded cheddar cheese, yeah?! If you’re going to do it, you may as well do it properly!

Pop the pizza into a 220c oven for 20 minutes, or whatever your prepared pizza crust instructions say.

Meanwhile, we’re not done yet! What does every good taco have on top???? The SALAD!

Into a mixing bowl goes 1 diced up tomato along with a shredded iceberg lettuce. Add in 1 cup of sour cream & give it a jolly good mix to coat evenly.

When the pizza comes out of the oven, adorn it with the salad & crown it gloriously with slices of creamy avocado.

 

Roasted Tomato Soup

A celebration of Summer bursting with the lively flavours of

sun-kissed Tomatoes, tongue-tingling Capsicums & soul-soothing Garlic. 

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This soup is a guilt free pleasure & we feel the goodness pulsating nourishment  throughout our bodies with every fabuliciouz spoonful! I hope your Fam-Bam loves it just as much as mine does.

Begin simply by quartering 1.5 kg of tomatoes & spreading those evenly in a roasting dish. Drizzle over 1 tablespoon of olive oil along with 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar. Season ever so generously with salt, pepper & dried thyme.

Next, squeeze a whole head of garlic into a corner of the pan & just set it aside for a moment.

Grab a baking tray & onto that goes 2 red capsicums which you’ve cut in half & removed the seeds & bitter white pith from. Make sure you place them skin side up on the tray before drizzling with a wee splash of olive oil as well.

Pop both the pan & the tray into a 180c oven for half an hour to roast.

Once done, place the capsicums into a bowl & cover them with cling film to sweat. Set that aside.

Into a big pot or saucepan, place the roasted tomatoes along with all those luscious juices from the pan. Just make sure you take that head of garlic out first!

Meanwhile, return to your capsicums as they should be done by now. Remove the cling film & the skin on all the capsicum halves should easily peel away, then into the pot they go! Remember to pour in any collected juices too – that’s all flavour!

Start to break apart your garlic head & squeeze all that soft yumminess out of the skins & into the pot!

Pour in 1 litre of chicken stock & get that on to the heat. Bring the soup to a boil & then simmer away for 15 minutes.

Finally, drag out good old Mr Buzzy (aka stick blender) to blend your soup smooth before one more go at the salt & pepper, seasoning to your taste.

Tanz Tip ~ To keep my meal completely Gluten Free, I like to serve Mini Pappadum’s alongside my soup so that I still get the crunch factor without the crusty bread.