Friday, February 26, 2016

504/1038 - Sicilian lemon lamb from Carol Field

As I did a grocery shop today, lamb was definitely on my mind. A few nights ago I was all geared up to tackle this recipe...until I realised we were without lamb! 

I decided to buy lamb rump as it is the cut we most often buy and I was fairly sure things would work out OK, even if I did skip the part about leaving the meat to sit in its juices overnight. 

After wandering around our wonderful garden this evening, snipping parsley and lemon thyme to add to our dinner, I thanked my husband for what felt like the millionth time for keeping me in fresh herbs. I honestly do not know what I would do with myself if I didn't have my fragrant little plants to add taste to almost everything I cook. 

This recipe was designed to feed eight and so I halved it using a little trick I devised many years ago. I tend to get a bit lost in the process as I cook, and in the past have been know to halve some ingredients and then forget myself and proceed to add the non-halved amount of others. Whenever halving or doubling a recipe now, I always rewrite the entire list of ingredients with the converted amounts. Occasionally (and as I did tonight), I will also write out a short-hand version of the recipe so that I can put the book away and make sure I don't slip back into old habits! 

As soon as I had my first taste of the sauce I knew we were onto another winner. The lemon offset the flavour of the meat juices perfectly and I will confess to having many tastes as it thickened. 

My favourite recipes are those which evoke happy groans from my family. Tonight was groan city (hooray!) and we are all eyeing off the leftover sauce which I am fairly sure I will be stealing to pour over a vegetable lunch I had planned for tomorrow. 

A truly heavenly meal x 

The recipe halved...and my shorthand version of the method

Thursday, February 25, 2016

503/1038 - Potato drop scones

This recipe didn't make it past the first version of The Cook's Companion, which is a shame because they were very simple and tasty!

Blending the ingredients, I couldn't get the mixture as smooth as I would have liked but the result was absolutely fine anyway. I think I added around double the required amount of parsley to the mix but we LOVE parsley and I think they tasted fabulous this way. 

Dinner tonight was these little drop scones topped with runny-yolked poached eggs, raw vegetables and steamed rainbow trout. A delicious combination.

We may sound like we eat like the healthiest family on the planet, but I think a small part of me was just trying to make up for the very decadent carbonara we ate last night.

Mission accomplished x

Thursday, February 18, 2016

502/1038 - Mediterranean baked fish - a one-pot dish

A few weeks ago I bought the most beautiful snapper from the Vic market but sadly had to come home and put it in the freezer, along with the many other packages that I bought way too many of! 

To be honest, the fish was so incredible it would not have mattered how we cooked it; the tasty topping becoming the icing on a very delicious cake.

Even my youngest ate the olives which was a bit of a surprise. He eats most things but olives are something we haven't quite got over the line with him just yet. We have a rule in our house that has turned him from a picky eater into quite the little gourmand; if there is something on your plate you don't like, you must eat at least one mouthful and then take it or leave it as you like. I like to call this 'palate conditioning' and it has worked a treat with most foods. My favourite meals are those where a corner is turned and my youngest exclaims, "Ooh, I like such and such now!". Even he enjoys telling people how this technique taught him to like eggplant. Olives next...

The tomatoes I used were picked fresh from the garden, and due to their small size I did not peel or seed them. There is simply nothing like a home grown tomato; so sweet and ridiculously tasty!

Another lovely meal and recipe 502 done and dusted x

Beautiful tomatoes, straight from the garden

Thursday, February 11, 2016

501/1038 - English mint sauce

I just LOVE the five minute recipes in this book. 

Whilst I realise it is obvious that I am a Stephanie fan, I can say with all honesty that this is the nicest mint sauce I have tasted. Perhaps it was because I used apple cider vinegar, perhaps it was because it was only five minutes old when we ate it. No matter the reason, I am so pleased I have found yet another reason to love having mint in the garden!

Apple cider vinegar being very good for the gut, I think I should be making this sauce more often.

Flash fried lamb rump is great, but mint sauce makes it absolutely fabulous x

Friday, February 5, 2016

500/1038 - Rose's foolproof ganache

Goodness, what a milestone! Four and a half years of cooking and I finally feel I have made a decent dint in this challenge. How appropriate that recipe number five hundred was a celebratory one! 

It was my son's birthday this week and he requested a chocolate mud cake. It is one of my least favourite cakes, but of course I obliged. When it is your birthday in this house, nobody else's opinion matters when it comes to the food choices. To make him extra happy, I decided to coat his calorie-laden slab with Rose's foolproof ganache, which amusingly I somehow managed to mess up! With a bit of quick thinking it was able to be recovered but I did have a quiet giggle that I flubbed a recipe with the word foolproof in the title.

With LOADS of ganache left over, I whipped up some strawberry macarons and sandwiched the ganache in between each pair. 

A decadent week for our family indeed x 

The actual reason for making the ganache!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

499/1038 - Pickled sardines with chilli

Seeking a light lunch, I went cruising through the garden today to see what I could find. The best I could manage was a tiny tomato, a few lettuce leaves and some basil. Where on earth did all of my vegetables go?

Mixing my finds with a couple of boiled eggs, I was a little underwhelmed with the result. Thankfully I remembered that I had sardines marinating in the fridge and lunch wasn't so bad after all! 

Apparently these little morsels will last up to a year in the fridge but I am fairly certain mine won't be in there that long. 

Goodness, look at that number! Only one recipe to go until the big 500 x