Showing posts with label quick meals. Show all posts
Showing posts with label quick meals. Show all posts

Friday, March 25, 2016

Quick and Good Friday Seafood - Smoked Salmon and Broccolini One-Pot Spaghetti

Quick amd Good Friday Seafood - Smoked Salmon and Broccolini One-Pot Spaghetti
Quick amd Good Friday Seafood - Smoked Salmon and Broccolini One-Pot Spaghetti


It's been an almost unforgivably long time since I've posted. Sorry. I don't really have an excuse, just haven't gotten around to it. So for Good Friday I thought I'd post a quick and really simple seafood dish that tastes amazing.

This is the most frequently occurring dish in our house at the moment. And for the last, oh, month or so. It is divine and oh so easy to make. It helps that Lance has been hot-smoking salmon like there’s no tomorrow. And that I wholeheartedly support this habit. But most supermarkets and delis have some good hot-smoked salmon options available for sale these days for if you don’t have yourself a Lance. You only really need 1 fillet for this 4-person dish as the flavour of the smoked fish is quite strong and penetrates the cream so well. Smoke and fat are best friends, (think smoked butter, smoked cheese, smoked brisket) so it makes sense that the cream benefits from the smoke as well. And the whole thing cooks in one pot. Seriously. I’ve heard tell of one-pot-pastas but finally braved it myself and now there’s no going back. Especially with this specific dish. If it’s more than a week since we’ve had it, Lance reminds me that there’s smoked salmon in the house. And it tastes super fancy and complicated. It will impress the socks off people when in reality, you’ve cooked a bit of onion and garlic, then popped everything else in the pan and walked away until it’s cooked.


 Oh, and this works just as well with asparagus!


Quick amd Good Friday Seafood - Smoked Salmon and Broccolini One-Pot Spaghetti
Quick amd Good Friday Seafood - Smoked Salmon and Broccolini One-Pot Spaghetti
Quick amd Good Friday Seafood - Smoked Salmon and Broccolini One-Pot Spaghetti



Smoked Salmon and Broccolini One-Pot Spaghetti

500g dry spaghetti
2 cups fish stock
3 cups water
1 cup cream
4 heaped tsps. prepared horseradish
1 bunch broccolini, sliced into 3cm lengths
1 hot-smoked salmon portion
2 tsp pink peppercorns
1 brown onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
Parsley and red chili flakes to serve (optional)



Heat a large, deep-sided saucepan to medium and add a splash of olive oil. Add the onions and sweat for 5 minutes, or until translucent. Add the garlic and cook for a further 5 minutes. Add the pink peppercorns, the fish stock. water, cream and horseradish and stir to combine. Check the seasoning, but make it a little less salty than you ordinarily would. Otherwise when the liquid reduces, it'll be too salty. 

Add the dry spaghetti and push under the liquid. Raise the heat gently to bring the liquid to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and leave for 15 minutes. The noodles should be definitely soft enough to stir at this point. 

Add in the broccolini and salmon, stirring through the mixture. Cook for another 5 minutes, or until al dente. The majority of the liquid will be dissolved into a beautiful creamy sauce. Check for seasoning and serve with chili flakes and fresh parsley.
Quick amd Good Friday Seafood - Smoked Salmon and Broccolini One-Pot Spaghetti
Quick amd Good Friday Seafood - Smoked Salmon and Broccolini One-Pot Spaghetti
Quick amd Good Friday Seafood - Smoked Salmon and Broccolini One-Pot Spaghetti
Quick amd Good Friday Seafood - Smoked Salmon and Broccolini One-Pot Spaghetti
Quick amd Good Friday Seafood - Smoked Salmon and Broccolini One-Pot Spaghetti

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Experimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg


Experimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg


One of my colleagues has a mini farm on her property, with chickens and ducks. I’ve been the lucky recipient of a few dozen fresh chicken eggs and when I mentioned I’d never tried duck eggs before, she brought some in for me to try. Lance stressed me out a little by asking what I was going to do with them, because I had to make something special to match the specialness of the duck eggs. The pressure was on! I didn’t know anything about duck eggs, apart from the fact that they’re bigger than chook eggs. And from ducks. I was told to expect richer, creamier eggs. A large yolk. They are fattier than chook eggs, but also have a higher protein content. They’re apparently great to bake with, and great for egg-heavy things like custards and souffl├ęs.

 

Ok. Well, with this knowledge but still no personal understanding of what to expect, I thought the first try would be best kept simple. A nice poached egg to let the flavours shine. (Yes, I know this is technically a soft-boiled egg, but David Chang calls this version a poached egg in my Treme cookbook and if it’s good enough for him, it’s good enough for me). Making a poached egg a meal, I thought I’d make some hummus mash of sorts, flavoured with a capsicum Lance had smoked on the weekend (my house is currently filled with an array of yummy smoked things, like salmon, capsicum, cashews as Lance experiments with a new chamber smoking technique). Just some roast capsicums will suffice if you don’t have a Lance/smoking fiend around you. If you do it yourself, really char the skins so they have a little smokiness, and add a teaspoon of smoked paprika to ramp up the smoke flavour more. Instead of tahini, I thought I’d toast and blend some sunflower seeds in the mix, and subbed balsamic vinegar for acid instead of lemon juice to add an extra layer of complexity to the smoke.

 

I beefed up the whole situation with some leftover roast lamb and toasted quinoa adds heft as well as salt and texture. Sub in whatever leftover meat or even chorizo or bacon as you see fit. A bit of a green salad adds some fresh crunch and voila…a lovely meal comes together.

 

So, my verdict on the duck eggs? The taste is basically the same as chicken eggs, but with a creamier mouthfeel. If you are into your #yolkporn like I am, duck eggs will be right up your alley! The yolks blended into the hummus to make it rich, without having added all the olive oil of a normal hummus. Definitely think I’ll be adding duck eggs to the repertoire!


Experimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg
Experimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck EggExperimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg
 Experimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg
Experimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg
Experimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg

Experimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg


Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg


¼ cup sunflower seeds

1 tbsp olive oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tin chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 cup chicken or vegetable stock

1 smoked capsicum (or roasted capsicum if you can’t access a smoked one, with 1 tsp smoked paprika)

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

 

¼ cup quinoa, rinsed and dried

1 cup diced roast lamb

1 tsp sumac

Salt and pepper to taste

 

2 duck eggs, room temperature

 

Heat a medium saucepan to low and toast the sunflower seeds for 2-3 minutes, tossing the pan here and there to stir until it smells nutty and toasty, but not browned. Pour out onto a cutting board or plate and set aside to cool. In the same saucepan, add the olive oil and garlic, and cook for 1-2 minutes or until translucent. Be careful not to burn. Add the stock and chickpeas and bring to a steady simmer.

 

Peel the skin off the smoked capsicum (much like roasting them, it should come off fairly easily), core, de-seed and roughly chop. Stir into the chickpeas and leave to simmer for 10 minutes for the flavours to fuse. Remove from the heat, add the sunflower seeds and blend the whole thing until smooth with a stick blender. Stir through the balsamic vinegar, check for seasoning and set aside with the lid on to keep warm.

 

Bring a small saucepan of water to the boil. Prepare a bowl of ice water. Gently lower the duck eggs into the boiling water and set a timer for 4 minutes, 30 seconds.

 

Meanwhile, heat a frypan to medium high and add the quinoa and lamb. If the lamb isn’t very fatty, you might need to add a tablespoon of oil to stop it sticking. Mix around to heat the lamb and toast. The quinoa should go a light golden colour and the edge of the lamb will crispen.

 

Pull the eggs out of the water and plunge into ice water to stop the cooking and cool enough to be able to handle. This should only take 30 seconds or so.

 
Plate the hummus, then gently peel an egg and serve on top, you can either split it to have the yolk spill out or leave it whole for the diner to do. Mix the sumac into the quinoa mix and season. Sprinkle over the top. Serve!

Experimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg
Experimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg
Experimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg
Experimenting with Produce - Smoked Capsicum Hummus with Toasted Lamb, Quinoa and a Poached Duck Egg



Saturday, October 18, 2014

Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole

Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole

Sunday’s whilst generally recovery days after the frivolities that Saturday nights inevitably bring, they’re also prep days for me. With a little bit of time and effort, my husband’s lunches are ready for the whole week and it’s one less thing to worry about day-to-day. He’s graduated from his quinoa biscuits to baked bean casserole. Baked bean casserole became a common dinner dish when we were saving to go on a 2 month trip to the US around 6 years ago. Back then, the only late night shopping was Thursdays, so we’d spend our night grocery shopping and fix a baked bean casserole in 10-15 minutes when we got home, then cook it in the microwave while we unpacked the bags. It was a super cheap, but highly nutritious meal and really tasty. It evolves constantly, depending on what we have in the house. Leftover roast veges are common elements, as is any type of leftover meat. The grain can be changed out too. Quinoa or buckwheat can take place of the rice. Or you can leave that out altogether if you aren’t feeling it.

The recipe below is one of the most common combinations when making it from scratch for lunches. I divide this up into 5x 500mL plastic containers that Lance then cooks in the microwave at work for around 4 minutes on high and eats with corn thins. When I take one to work, I usually have it with some rye toast.


Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole
Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole
Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole
Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole
Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole
Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole
Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole


Baked Bean Casserole

1 425g tin baked beans
1 400g tin chick peas, rinsed
2/3 cup passata
1 heaped tsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp mixed Italian herbs
1 cup capsicum, finely diced
1 cup mushrooms, finely diced
1 cup zucchini, finely diced
1 cup roma tomato, finely diced
1 cooked sausage, finely diced
1 large red onion, diced
1 tbsp olive oil
½ tsp salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 cup brown rice, rinsed
2 ¼ cups water

Put the brown rice and water in a large glass bowl and microwave on high for 24 minutes. Set aside to cool

Heat the olive oil in a frypan to medium heat and add the onion and salt. Fry for 5-10 minutes until translucent and then add the balsamic and garlic. Cook for a further 5 minutes until caramelized and then take off the heat and allow to cool.

Dice all the vegetables. You want them as small as the baked beans, or smaller. Dice the cooked sausage as small as this as well. Stir together all of the vegetables, the cooled onion mixture, sausages, baked beans and chick peas. Mix the paprika, herbs and passata together, then mix into the rest of the mixture. Finally add the cooled rice and mix very thoroughly. You want it to be completely mixed up.

Divide the casserole into individual containers, then store in the fridge ready for lunch throughout the week.

When ready to serve, microwave for 4 minutes to heat the casserole and cook the vegetables. Serve with corn thins, corn chips or hot toast
Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole
Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole
Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole
Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole
Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole
Sunday Prep = Work Lunches - Baked Bean Casserole

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Get Well Soon - Herbed Cream Cheese and Prawn Pizza


Get Well Soon - Herbed Cream Cheese and Prawn Pizza


Lance and I both got hit by the flu that was going around. It knocked us around quite a bit and in an attempt to kick it, I started amping up the health-promoting ingredients in all of our dishes. This on top of the lemon, honey and ginger teas we were drinking like they were going out of fashion. One Sunday we were both feeling sorry for ourselves, the sun was shining and I was a bit over the soups. So I made these cold-kicking cream cheese pizzas – full of garlic, ginger, chilli, fresh herbs and lemon and honey squeezed over the top. We sat out in the sun to get some vitamin D and shake off some of the germs and cobwebs from being in bed for a week. 

It felt a lot like the sitting at the pub and having a gourmet pizza that we were missing out on, and it perked us up enough to get back to work the next day.


You don’t need to be sick to enjoy these. But they’re easy enough to cook when you are. I think this is going to make a few appearances over Spring and Summer. Possibly with real, homemade pizza bases!



Get Well Soon - Herbed Cream Cheese and Prawn Pizza
Get Well Soon - Herbed Cream Cheese and Prawn Pizza



Herbed Cream Cheese and Prawn Pizza


100g peeled raw prawns
4 lebanese loaves
250g Philadelphia cream cheese
2 bunches coriander
1 bunch parsley
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1 tsp red chilli, minced
1 tsp grated ginger
¼ tsp salt
Handful bean sprouts
1 tbsp capers
Handful rocket
Lemon wedges for serving



Preheat the oven to 170C


Throw your cream cheese, coriander, parsley, garlic cloves, chilli, salt and ginger in a food processor. Pulse until it’s all chopped up and evenly combined.


Spread over the Lebanese loaves, then distribute the prawns, capers and bean sprouts. Pop in the oven and cook for 20 minutes until the prawns are pink and the cheese is getting golden at the edges.


Serve with a handful of rocket on top, then drizzle over some honey and add lemon wedges.
Even better with a beer or crisp white wine


Get Well Soon - Herbed Cream Cheese and Prawn Pizza
Get Well Soon - Herbed Cream Cheese and Prawn Pizza
Get Well Soon - Herbed Cream Cheese and Prawn Pizza
Get Well Soon - Herbed Cream Cheese and Prawn Pizza

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Quick Post - Roast Strawberry, Corn and Ancho Chili Salsa




Quick Post - Roast Strawberry, Corn and Ancho Chili Salsa

 Quick Post - Roast Strawberry, Corn and Ancho Chili Salsa
I know it’s not summer yet, but strawberries have started popping up more and more at markets and grocers and supermarkets around me. I had avoided temptation to buy the out-of-season and therefore expensive fruit…until I came across a punnet for .99c. I could resist no longer. Strawberries are delicious. Knowing that they weren’t in their peak season and therefore not going to be the sweetest they could be, I thought I would roast them to intensify the flavours. This salsa is sweet and juicy and warm. Perfect for tacos in these nights that still have a chill. I’ve used ancho chili powder because I wanted the smokey flavour, but didn’t want it to be “hot”, and ancho is a very mild chili. Feel free to use what you have. The corn adds a pop of texture and creaminess to the smoke.

I served these in tacos using shredded leftover roast pork fried with a tin of lentils. So apart from the roasting time of 15 minutes, this is the perfect midweek (taco) dish because it takes no more than 10 minutes prep time. Leftover roast chicken (or one from the supermarket or takeaway) would also go really well with this salsa and still be a quick meal. Add your own accompaniments if desired, such as cheese or shredded cabbage!

And check out my shopping spots if you can't find ancho chili powder


Quick Post - Roast Strawberry, Corn and Ancho Chili Salsa
Quick Post - Roast Strawberry, Corn and Ancho Chili Salsa

Roasted Strawberry and Corn Salsa

250g punnet strawberries, hulled and halved
2 tsp olive oil
1 tsp ancho chili powder
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp honey
pepper
½ cup corn kernels (if frozen, thaw by rinsing under water and draining well)
2 tbsp finely shredded basil

Preheat the oven to 170C

Mix the olive oil, chili powder, salt, honey, pepper in a bowl until evenly distributed. Stir in the strawberries and corn kernels, coating them well. Tip out onto a lined baking tray.

Put the dish in the oven and roast for 15 minutes until strawberries start to soften and go a bit jammy. Scatter basil leaves on top.

Serve!

Quick Post - Roast Strawberry, Corn and Ancho Chili SalsaQuick Post - Roast Strawberry, Corn and Ancho Chili Salsa
Quick Post - Roast Strawberry, Corn and Ancho Chili Salsa
Quick Post - Roast Strawberry, Corn and Ancho Chili Salsa
Quick Post - Roast Strawberry, Corn and Ancho Chili Salsa
Quick Post - Roast Strawberry, Corn and Ancho Chili Salsa