Chorizo and wine is another of our favourite tapas. The word tapas comes from tapa, meaning to cover. At first, this is what tapas were – a slice of ham or bread placed on a glass of sherry in a tavern to keep flies out of the glass. These salty complimentary morsels also promoted thirst and hopefully more drink sales. Tapas have evolved since then are now often the main reason for visiting a tavern.
Seriously, I can’t think of anything better than nibbling on this delicious meaty snack as I enjoy a glass of wine… as the sun sets… in a gorgeous location… with friends.
2 chorizo sausages, sliced on the diagonal 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped 1/2 cup white wine 1/4 cup dry sherry 1/2 teaspoon chicken stock powder 1 teaspoon sweet paprika 1 bay leaf 2 tablespoons of parsley, chopped
Heat a non-stick pan and cook the chorizo slices until browning slightly (you do not need to add oil to the pan). Remove the chorizo from the pan (keep the fat from the chorizo).
Heat the pan with chorizo fat, add the garlic to the pan and cook gently to soften, but do not burn.
Add paprika and cook for 30 seconds. Add the wine and the bay leaf and simmer until liquid has reduced a little. Add the chicken stock powder and the sherry and simmer until reduced and thickening.
Return the chorizo to the pan, add the parsley and toss to coat well.
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I have a simple scone recipe I use when camping. None of the ingredients needs to be refrigerated. I use self-raising flour, long-life cream and long-life milk, which is super handy if you have limited fridge/esky space.
Near the end of our last camping trip, I noticed I had ham, cheese and some herbs that I needed to use up, so I decided to make ham and cheese scones. I had never cooked them in the camp oven before and was super pleased they turned out as delicious as they did.
As always, Dwayne was in charge of cooking the scones over the fire. I simply told him I would usually cook them at 200C for about 30 minutes and let him work on getting the right temperature over the fire.
Further on, you will find some instructions about cooking scones in a camp oven and some tips on what you need to consider when producing the cooking heat. I hope you enjoy this recipe and be sure to let me know how they turn out.
Our camp kitchen
We cooked these yummy scones on a recent camping trip on Kangaroo Island. We were camped at American River.
3 cups self-raising flour 1 teaspoon baking powder 2 tablespoons finely chopped chives 1 teaspoon finely chopped rosemary 1/2 cup chopped ham 1 cup coarsely grated cheese A pinch of salt 300ml cream About 75 ml milk
Sift flour and baking powder into a bowl, add the chives, rosemary, ham, cheese and a pinch of salt, then mix well.
Make a well in the middle of the bowl and add the cream and most of the milk. Mix well add more milk if necessary. The dough should not be too wet and sticky. Do not over mix the dough.
Turn dough out onto a floured board and knead a little (do not over-knead). Shape the dough into a ball and then flatten to the shape of your camp oven. Place on a greased piece of baking paper and cut into wedges (you do not need to cut all the way through.
Heat your camp oven over the coals. Carefully lift the dough/scones by the baking paper and place them into the camp oven.
Cook the scones with a little heat under the camp oven and coals on top. Our theory is to cook it from both top and bottom with more heat on top. We hung our camp oven over a small fire. Using a star-drop (as a makeshift tripod), Dwayne was able to lift the camp oven higher to reduce the heat or lower it to increase the heat. We used heat beads on the top of the camp oven because we hadn’t had time to develop many coals and the heat beads hold their heat better, making this ‘brunch’ reasonably quick to make. We checked every 10 minutes until the scones were ready. Again, we adjusted the heat, if needed, when we checked it.
Use a knife to see if the scones are ready. Dig in deep with the tip of a knife; if the knife comes out clean, scones should be ready.
To cook in your home oven.
Place the scones on a greased oven tray and bake at 200C in a preheated oven for about 30 minutes.
For more instruction on cooking with hot coals.
If you want to cook on coals from a campfire, you need to burn a good amount of wood to create hot coals. It can take an hour or so for your campfire to make enough coals to cook on. Be sure to factor the process of producing the embers into your prep and cooking time. Alternatively, if time or good wood is in short supply, use heat-beads as they heat up quickly and hold their heat well.
The easiest way to cook in a camp oven over hot coals is to lift the coals out of the fire with a long-handled shovel. Select a safe place next to the fire and put a small amount of *coals on the ground. Place the camp oven onto the coals. Get some more coals from the fire to place on top of the oven. Getting the right amount of coals is not always easy. Be aware of cooking the scones too hot and burning them. It will take some experimentation to get the temperature right. Therefore, check the scones after 10 minutes to make sure you are not cooking them too hot or not hot enough.
*you only need a small number of coals under the camp oven or none at all. Too many, and you will burn the bottom of the scones.
Many factors determine the heat of the coals, such as ambient temperature and wind. If it is windy, the coals will cook hotter. Make allowances for wind by reducing the number of coals used.
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Spain is renown for its tapas. Tapas meaning ‘small Spanish savoury dish’, is typically served with drinks at a bar. When we visited Spain in 2019 we gorged on tapas and these spicy olives are just one of our favourites, and just one of the tapas recipes I will share with you.
I have hosted dinner parties where I have served tapas. These dinner parties were a hit. A taste of Spain was the theme and many dishes were served at the same time, allowing people to try lots of different tastes and textures. Tapas such as spicy olives, potato tortilla, meatballs, chorizo in wine, stuffed peppers, grilled eggplant, chickpeas and spinach create good variety and a balanced meal.
This recipe is simple, and easily dresses up ordinary olives making them a taste sensation!
1 – 2 tablespoons Olive oil
2 garlic cloves
2 teaspoon of chopped thyme
1 teaspoon of chopped rosemary
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 – 2 chilli, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
1 cup of mixed olives
Heat oil in a small pan, then add the remaining ingredients and heat gently. Serve warm.
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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.
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.
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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We love duck, and although it is not terribly good for you (it contains a lot of fat between the skin and the meat), it is not as bad as you think. In fact, without skin and visible fat, duck meat has less fat than roasted skinless chicken breasts. But seriously who can resist the crispy delicious skin of roast duck? Not me! Furthermore, duck meat is surprisingly nutrient dense, provides high-quality protein and contains essential amino acids.
Ingredients 2 duck breast, pat dry and score the duck breast
This was one of our favourite Cambodian street foods. Often made in roadside stalls; we watch these salads being made with tiny whole crushed crabs and sampled many others that incorporated small dried shrimp. I opted to make my mango salad with the dried shrimp* which is readily available in S E Asia where we are currently located.
2 green mangos, peeled and shredded/grated
1/2 a small carrot, grated (I used the carrot to add a bit of colour)
3 Tbs dried shrimp
1 small hot chilli, finely chopped
1 Tbs of finely chopped garlic
3 small Asian shallots, finely sliced
A handful each of holy** basil and mint, finely chopped
2 Tbs crushed peanuts
For the dressing
3 Tbs fish sauce
The juice of two limes
2 Tbs of sweet chilli sauce
1/2 tsp brown sugar
This is how I made the salad….
I put all the ingredients for the dressing in a jar and gave it a good shake and set aside until needed (this made enough salad dressing to save half to use the next day!)
Then in a bowl, I placed the shredded mango, carrot, shrimp, chilli, garlic, shallots, basil, mint and one tablespoon of the peanuts. I gave the salad a really good mix, then added the dressing and mixed it through well.
To serve I place a good portion on individual plates and sprinkle with more peanuts.
Just bloody delicious!
*leave out the shrimp if you can’t find any or if you do not like them.
**use normal basil if you can’t get holy basil
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