Tag Archives: food

Caramelised Onion Jam

I made this onion jam to eat with an English specialty… toad-in-the-hole. Now that I have discovered that it is so easy to make, I will keep some of this yummy concoction in my fridge at all times. This would be just as delicious with a cheese plate or on sandwiches of roast meat. Yum yum, making myself hungry!

 

Ingredients

2 Tablespoons of olive oil
1 Tablespoon of butter
2 large red onions, halved and thinly sliced
1/4 cup of caster sugar
1 cup of red wine
1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar

marmalade red onions red wine condiment

Method

Heat olive oil and butter in a large pan over medium heat. Add onions and sugar to oil and cook for about 15 minutes, stirring often.

Stir in red wine and balsamic vinegar and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until liquid is evaporated (about 15 to 20 minutes).

 

To serve

Place in a serving bowl and serve with sandwiches, flans, cheese plates or my yummy toad-in-the-hole (recipe coming soon).

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Red wine, onion, conserve, preserve, marmalade

Thai Banana Blossom Salad

We have spent a lot of the last four years in Thailand, therefore I do cook many Thai style meals. I usually shop at the local SuperCheap (a Thai supermarket) and consequently use mostly Thai vegetables and fruits in our meals.

For over a year now I have regularly seen banana flowers in the veggie section and finally decided to make a banana blossom salad. Using the traditional flavours of Thai cuisine this what I came up with…

Banana Blossom Salad

Ingredients

3 Tablespoons lime juice
2 Tablespoons fish sauce
1 Tablespoon palm sugar*
1 Tablespoon chilli paste or chilli jam
3 Tablespoons coconut cream

1 banana blossom
1 large red chilli
1 large green chilli
1 small carrot (or 1/2 a large carrot)
2 spring onions
bean shoots
4 Tablespoons of Asian fried shallots
2 Tablespoons of crushed peanuts**

Method

Mix the lime sauce, fish sauce, palm sugar and chilli paste in a bowl and stir until sugar is dissolved. Add coconut cream and blend well. Check for the right balance of salty, sweet, sour and spicy. Adjust as needed (fish sauce – salty, sugar – sweet, lime juice – sour and chilli paste – spicy). Set aside.

Cut the chillies lengthwise, remove the seeds and pith. Slice the chillies thinly and add to a large mixing bowl. Grate the carrot and add to the mixing bowl. Finely slice the spring onion and, along with the bean shoots, add to the dish. Set aside.

Thai food

Fill a large bowl with cold water and squeeze some lemon or lime juice into it. Remove the outer leaves of the banana blossom until all dark leaves have been removed. Keep the best two outer leaves for serving. Cut the blossom lengthwise and remove inner core. Finely slice the blossom and place each slice in the water as you do so, to stop it going black.

Thai food cooking

Strain the blossom and add to the mixing bowl, add the dressing and two tablespoons of the fried onion and mix well.

To serve

Place two clean banana blossom leaves on plates and heap with the salad. Garnish with a tablespoon each of fried onion and peanuts.

Banana Blossom Salad1

Bon appetite

Notes

*Use soft brown sugar instead of palm sugar

**I didn’t have peanuts so used a seed mix with the salad in the photos. Peanuts would definitely suit the taste better.

Chilli paste, chilli jam and Asian fried shallots found in Asian grocery stores.

This recipe will serve two as a meal or four to six as a side dish.

Add cooked prawns to make it a meal.

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Thai Banana Blossom Salad

Larb Moo Tod

Larb Moo Tod are Thai-style fried pork balls. Made with similar flavours like the popular larb moo which is a Thai (or initially a Laos) salad made with pork mince and herbs, they are delicious. We first tried these pork balls at “The Deck” which is the restaurant/bar at Phuket Yacht Haven Marina. We both love these tasty morsels, so I set to work decoding the Larb Moo Tod ingredients. Below is the recipe I created, and Dwayne and I both think it tastes as good as the original.

Larb Moo Tod - Fried Pork Balls Thai style. Displayed in a white bowl. They are being served on a boat and the background has a red and black headsail furler rope in it.

Ingredients

3 Tbsp raw glutinous or sticky rice
4 lemongrass stems (soft white part only)
1 clove of garlic
1 small red onion, finely diced
8 kaffir lime leaves, finely sliced and diced
1 red chilli, finely diced
2 spring onions, finely sliced
500g pork
2 Tbsp fish sauce
1 Tbsp Lime
1 tsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp flour
Oil for deep-frying

Larb Moo Tod - Fried Pork Balls Thai style. Displayed in a white bowl. They are being served on a boat and the background has the headsail furler rope in it.

Method

Firstly you need to roast and grind the rice (Khao Khua). Heat a wok to medium heat and add the rice. Cook while frequently stirring until the grains are toasted and golden; this will take about 5 minutes and might smoke a little. Let the rice cool down for a few minutes before grinding it, with a mortar and pestle, into a coarse powder (or you can use a spice grinder).

Using a mortar and pestle (or a food processor) mince up lemongrass and garlic and transfer it to a large mixing bowl.

Add to mixing bowl all remaining ingredients (apart from the oil) and mix well to combine.

 
Tourradar

With wet hands, shape the mixture into small balls (don’t be fussy any shape will do!). Heat enough oil in a wok to deep-fry the balls in batches.

Fry the lab moo balls for approximately 5 – 7 minutes, until crispy, browned and cooked through.

Remove with a slotted spoon or tongs and place on paper towels to drain.

Serve with or Nam Jim or sweet chilli sauce.

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Larb Moo Tod - Thai style fried pork balls - easy to make, savoury snack. Delicious, bursting with flavour and full of texture. #recipe #thai #pork #chilli

Poached Chicken Breast with Ham, Herbs & Dijon Dressing

This scrumptious low fat poached chicken looks and tastes so good, you can easily use this recipe for a special occasion! Experiment with different ways of plating it up and match it with tasty vegetables.

Ham, recipe, herbs,
Poached chicken breast served on a bed of mashed pumpkin!

Ingredients

4 x 170g single chicken breast fillets.
¼ cup finely chopped fresh chives
¼ cup finely chopped basil
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon rind
1 teaspoon olive oil
200g thinly sliced leg ham
4 spring onions, thinly sliced.

Zesty Dijon Dressing
3 teaspoons olive oil
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

Low fat, herbs ham dijon

Method

Pound chicken breast between two sheets of plastic wrap (Glad, Saran, Cling wrap etc) until they are 1 cm thick. Combine herbs, garlic, rind and oil in a small bowl (or process in a food processor for a few seconds). Spread a quarter of the herb mixture on each chicken fillet and top with ham. Starting from one long side, roll chicken pieces tightly, enclose in plastic wrap and twist ends to seal. Wrap each layer in one more layer of plastic wrap to secure them.

Bring a saucepan, or large fry pan, of water to the boil. Add the prepared rolls, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Remove rolls and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Discard poaching liquid.

Meanwhile make the dressing by combining ingredients in a jar, securing top and shaking well.

Remove plastic wrap and slice rolls to about 1cm thick. Divide slices among serving plates. Sprinkle with spring onion, drizzle with dressing and serve with steamed veg.

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Poached Chicken Breast with Ham Herbs and Dijon Dressing #recipe #chicken #poached #ham #dijon #herbs

Tea Smoked Duck with Asian Style Salad

I love duck! Love it! Whenever I want to make something special I will often think of duck. This was my first attempt at smoking duck and it turned out delicious… if I do say so myself!

Smoking mix

1 cinnamon stick
1 star anise
1 clove
1 cup of uncooked rice
1/2 cup of tea
1/4 cup sugar

Tea smoked duck

And this is how I made it….

In a mortar, I crushed the cinnamon stick, star anise and clove (crushed but not powdered) and then I combined this spice mix with the rice, tea and sugar.

I lined a wok with a couple of layers of foil and added the tea mix. I heated this over high heat until it was smoking hot. On a trivet, over the smoking tea, I placed the duck breast, skin side up.

I covered the top of the wok with foil, put the lid on and turned the heat down to low. Then I let it smoke for 20-25 minutes.

If you want crispy skin duck (as we did), take the duck out of the wok a little earlier. Heat a frying pan (no oil needed), add duck skin down and cook for a few minutes until crispy.

Tea smoked duck

My Salad

Shredded cabbage, thinly sliced large red chilli, thinly sliced beans, bean sprouts, finely chopped small red chilli, chopped coriander, mint and basil, grated carrot and grated green apple (apple tossed with the juice of 1/2 lime).

For the dressing – I used the same dressing I made for my green mango salad.

I served the duck with salad and lontong which is a compressed rice cake.

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Tea smoked duck with Asian style salad #recipe #duck #salad #smoked #teasmoked

Tea smoked duck with Asian style salad #recipe #duck #salad #smoked #teasmoked smoked duck with Asian style salad


Tourradar

Tea Smoked Fish

We love smoked fish and had the desire to make some. We were anchored at Langkawi ,and we had a couple of problems to overcome before we could make our own smoked fish. The first was we didn’t have a smoker and the second is we could not find any hickory wood chips (or similar) on the island.

Not usually one to be deterred from doing something just because it is not straightforward, Dwayne set about thinking about how to make an easy smoker. He came up with something we could use on the beach with two aluminium foil trays, some bulldog clips and a rack.

In the meantime, I had decided we could use a tea mixture instead of wood chips as the smoking mix and set about making something that may just add a delicious flavour to our fish.

This is what we came up with…

For the smoker…

2 aluminium foil trays
6 bulldog clips
1 oven rack or trivet
1 empty beer can
white spirits (metho)
sand
(or coals or wood for fire)

smokedfish6

Ingredients

fish

For the brine…

1 cup of water
1/4 cup salt
1/4 cup tightly packed brown sugar

For the tea smoke mixture…

1 cinnamon stick
2 star anise
2 clove
1 cup of uncooked rice
1/2 cup of tea
1/4 cup sugar

And this is how we smoked our fish…

I made the brine by dissolving the salt and sugar into 1/2 a cup of boiling water. Then I add 1/2 a cup of ice cold water. I then let the brine cool down before I added the fish.

I let the fish soak in the brine for 1/2 hour, then removed it and dried it with paper towels. Then set it in the fridge until we were ready to smoke it.

For the tea smoking mixture, I crushed up the cinnamon stick, star anise and cloves in my mortar and mixed it with the tea, sugar and rice.

When we were organised we went to the beach to set up our smoker.

Once on shore, we placed some of the tea mixture on the bottom of one of the trays then, because my rack doesn’t have legs, we used some old rocks from the beach and placed the rack on those so it was sitting over the tea mix. Next, we placed the fish on the trivet and topped with the other tray. Using the bulldog clips we secured the two trays together. The ‘smoker’ was then placed on top of a couple of bricks allowing space for the burner underneath.

Now we needed a flame. Dwayne, always willing to do one for the team, then skulled a can of beer, proudly producing the much-needed burner equipment. He cut the beer can in half and filled it with dry sand and then poured the white spirits over the sand. He lit this mix-up and placed it under the tray…. we now had our smoker and we could sit back with a refreshing glass of white wine while we let the smoker do its job.

smokedfish4

(Alternatively, you can use coals as your heat source or even a wood fire.)

We smoked the fish for about an hour. The cooking time will obviously depend on how hot you have it cooking.

We were extremely happy with the result! Next time I’ll tell you how to make my yummy smoked fish chowder!

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Tea Smoked Fish and How to Make a Disposable Smoker #recipe #teasmoked #fish #lunch #howto #smoker

Tea Smoked Fish and How to Make a Disposable Smoker #recipe #teasmoked #fish #lunch #howto #smoker


Tourradar

Spiced Roast Duck Breast with Mango Salad

Cooking on a boat

Ingredients
2 duck breast, pat dry and score the duck breast

Spice mix

1cm cinnamon stick
4 petals of star anise
1 tsp peppercorns
1 clove

Salad

1 green mango, shredded or grated
2-3 spring onions, thinly sliced
2 Asian shallots, thinly sliced
1 long red chilli, julienned or diced.
basil, mint, coriander, chopped

Salad Dressing

Salad dressing is the same I use for the Cambodian Green Mango Salad

3 Tbs fish sauce
The juice of two limes
2 Tbs of sweet chilli sauce
1/2 tsp brown sugar

cooking on a boat

Method

For the duck…

Using a mortar and pestle, crush the spices until well ground (or use five spice powder if you prefer).

Rub the spice mix all over the duck breast.

Heat a frypan until hot (do not add oil). Place duck skin side down and cook for a few minutes, on moderate heat, until fat renders.

Then place the duck into a preheated oven, set at 210c, for 15 minutes. Remove the duck from the oven and let it rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

For the salad…

Put all the ingredients for the dressing in a jar and give it a good shake. Refrigerate until needed.

Combine all the salad ingredients and dress the salad at the time of serving.

Serve the sliced duck with the mango salad for a fresh zesty treat.

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Spiced Duck Breast with Mango salad #crispyduck #zestysalad #mango #mint #recipe  #dinner #luncg #easyrecipe