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18 2017 Apr


April 21, 2017

Roast Rabbit.

1 rabbit; 1/4 cup olive oil; salt and freshly ground black pepper; 6 sprigs of thyme; 2 cloves garlic, crushed; 1/4 cup dry white wine.

Preheat the oven to 160 deg.C. Rub the rabbit all over with oil and sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Put the rabbit into a roasting dish and drop onto it the thyme and garlic, pop it into the oven and roast for 30 minutes. Add the wine to the pan, mix in the juices already in the pan and baste the rabbit with them. Cook the rabbit for another hour, basting every 15 minutes, until the rabbit is golden brown.

Horseradish custard.

300 ml milk; 2 eggs; 1 egg yolk; 1 tablespoon crushed horseradish; 1 teaspoon salt

Whisk together the eggs, extra egg yolk, horseradish and salt. Warm the milk then stir it into the egg mix. Let it stand for 5 minutes. Preheat the oven to 120 deg.C. Strain the custard then pour it into five small oiled moulds. Put them onto a baking tray and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
Serve as an accompaniment to the rabbit, garnished with sliced snowpeas.

April 14, 2017

Marbled Tea Leaf Eggs.

6 eggs; 3 tablespoons strong black tea; 1 tablespoon salt 2 whole Star Anise (you can buy the Star Anise at Chinese grocery stores or the gourmet section of your local supermarket)

Put the eggs in a saucepan, having first made a small hole in the blunt end, and cover them with cold water. Bring the water to a simmer and cook the eggs, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Then run them under the cold water tap so you can handle them without burning your fingers, and also to prevent the grey ring forming around the yolk. Now, tap them gently all over with the back of a spoon so that a fine network of cracks covers the shells. Having got rid of the first lot of water put the eggs back in the saucepan. Pour in 4 cups of cold water, the tea, salt and Star Anise and bring it to simmering point again. Let them simmer for 30 minutes then turn off the heat and leave the eggs in the liquid for about another hour. Shell the eggs carefully and you’ll find the whites will be traced with a fine marbled pattern. Use them as garnish either whole or cut in halves or quarters.

April 07, 2017

To make a fish pie one needs fish of some type. And in this case, pastry. I have chosen frozen puff pastry – the commercial brand. Although I did consider and, right up to writing this, filo. But I remember, last night when making the pie I’m about to describe, I couldn’t find the filo in my freezer. Therefore the puff. I chose two pie dishes, each would hold enough for one person. I sprayed the inside of each dish with a little olive oil. I then cut up a brown onion and peeled and sliced 4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped 2 ripe red tomatoes and some raw Atlantic Salmon pieces of various bite sizes and heated the lot in a pan wet with olive oil.

Once that lot was warmed through (I wasn’t cooking it for the table, it was for the pie, therefore would continue to cook once in the oven with its lid of pastry to brown and puff). Anyway, I scooped the mixture into the pie dishes, added some cut up green beans (they would be over-cooked had I included them with the fish etc.) I also popped in some chunks of raw plum and apricot and a splash of cream and a spoon of tomato paste and some green spinach leaves.

On with the lid and into a hot oven until the pastry browned.

By the way, you can use any fish which appeals to your palate.

March 17, 2017

Paddy’s Potato

1 potato
1 rasher lean bacon, cut into strips
1 tablespoon butter
pinch of dried basil leaves
freshly ground black pepper
1 spring onion, finely chopped
1 lightly-poached egg
1/4 cup grated tasty cheese
1 tablespoon whipped cream

Bake the potato in its jacket in the oven at 220 deg.C for an hour or so (depending on its size), or cook it in a microwave. Now, lie it on its side and cut a hole in the top. Scoop out the flesh and pop it into a mixing bowl with the bacon, basil, freshly ground black pepper and spring onion and mix it all together. Push it back into the spud you’ve hollowed out and just leave a little hollow. Pop the egg into it, top the egg with cheese to protect it from the heat then put the potato into an ovenproof dish and put it into the oven until the cheese is melted and golden. When it comes out of the oven, put a little blob of cream on it – Paddy’s potato.

March 10, 2017

Quiche Lorraine

185g shortcrust pastry; 60g sliced gruyere cheese; 4 eggs; 1 cup cream; 125g bacon, chopped; 1 tablespoon butter; 1 small onion, cut into fine rings; 1 teaspoon finely chopped parsley; salt; freshly ground black pepper.

Lightly fry the onion rings in butter and set aside. Line a flan tin with shortcrust pastry and lay out the gruyere slices over the bottom of it. Beat the eggs and cream together, add the bacon pieces, onion and parsley and season with pepper. Pour the egg mixture gently onto the cheese and bake in an oven at 200 deg.C for 30 minutes. Sprinkle with a little salt. Allow to cool, then gently take it out of the flan tin. Serve with a fresh French salad.

March 3, 2017

John Howard insisted salads be exempt from GST. Now the ATO is objecting to Uncle Tom Cobley and All demanding EVERYTHING is a salad. Hot. Cold. Green or the colour of the rainbow. Even aunty’s hat decoration. Really, one only has to look up the Oxford definition of ‘salad’.

Anyway, folks, this current hot weather is Salad Days for the gourmand and gourmet.

I make a salad dressing by splashing olive oil and white wine vinegar over whatever. Add garlic juice and a squirt of mirin – sweet sherry if no mirin – and a small slurp of light soy sauce. If my lemons are ripe, I forgo the vinegar for a good wetting of lemon juice – though sometimes I use both, and instead of mirin I dribble in a little honey to counter the acids of the vinegar and lemon.

For your interest, Oxford Dictionary says: salad n. cold dish of various mixtures of raw or cooked vegetables or herbs usu. seasoned with oil, vinegar, etc., and eaten with or including cold meat, fish, hard-boiled eggs, etc.; vegetable or herb suitable for eating raw.

February 17, 2017

Zucchini for when your neighbours give you their home-grown vegetables.

Peel and shave the zucchini lengthways with a vegetable peeler and then blanch them in hot water. (Throw them into the hot water and take out immediately.) Dry, then mix with a little olive oil, lemon zest, shaved Parmesan cheese and some cracked pepper. Toast a slice of sourdough bread on both sides. Brush with olive oil. Top with the zucchini then fold on slices of Prosciutto. Top with a lightly poached egg, salt, pepper and more lemon zest. Easy, eh?

February 10, 2017

BLACK OLIVES – ROASTED. 1 1/4 cups black Spanish olives; 2 tablespoons olive oil; 3 teaspoons finely chopped thyme; 5 cloves garlic, finely sliced.

Preheat the oven to 200 deg.C. Whilst it’s heating, rinse and drain the olives then put them into a bowl with the olive oil, thyme and garlic and stir them around until they’re well coated. Spread the olives out on a baking tray and roast them, shaking the tray occasionally, until they have shriveled and the garlic is golden – about 20 minutes. (Be careful not to burn the garlic.) Serve the olives warm. They’ll keep for 2 weeks covered with olive oil in an airtight container in the fridge.

January 27, 2017
Thinly slice pepper crusted salami. Evenly spread out on the rack under the grill. Crisp the slices (this gets rid of a lot of the fat). Put aside. Peel a cucumber (discard the pips), quarter it lengthwise. Cut these four strips into chips. Melt olive oil and butter in a pan. Slightly soften the chips. This is a quick process.
Plate the chips with raw, young spinach leaves and the crisp slices of salami. Serve as an entree.

January 20, 2017
My neighbours Ian and Dianne Rohde filled my mail box with cherries, baby marrows and cucumbers which they’d grown. I skinned the marrows and cucumbers, took the seeds out of the cucumbers, then cut both into little finger-sized shapes and warmed (not cooked) them in a little butter and olive oil, a splash of light soy sauce and sliced garlic (given by another neighbour John Terrell. I had some pre-cooked arborio rice and cubed chicken pieces which I combined with the vegetables. Turning off the gas I threw in the cherries and some cubed orange segments (from my garden). This combination was served in individual Chinese bowls after drizzling honey over each serving.

January 13, 2017
Soak, then blanch 500g of lambs’ brains. Dry them on kitchen paper (paper towels) then cut them into slices and season them with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Heat a tablespoon of butter in a frying pan and fry the brains until they’re golden on both sides then take them out and put them onto a warm serving dish. Add another 4 tablespoons of butter to the pan and heat until it starts to smoke then throw in a couple of tablespoons of chopped parsley. Stir then quickly pour over the brains. Warm a tablespoon of cider vinegar in the pan and sprinkle over the top of the brains. Serve straight away. This should be enough for 4 people.
Peter Russell-Clarke

December 30, 2016
Don’t overcook ANY food! Cold leftovers (from the fridge) can be diced then stirred into a hot sauce made from a good splash of soy sauce and equal amounts of cream.
Remember don’t boil the sauce – just heat it. Stir in the cold leftovers and serve over hot mashed potatoes.
Easy eh?

December 23, 2016

Last week’s recipe for Peter’s ‘Sounds of the Mountains’ radio segment.
1 egg; 1 1/4 cups chilled milk; 1 teaspoon honey; nip of brandy (or orange juice; cinnamon.
Into a blender break the egg, pour in the milk honey and brandy (or orange juice). Blend it, pour into a glass, sprinkle with cinnamon and you’re in business. If you like, use brown sugar, or vanilla essence or drinking chocolate or coffee. Instead of brandy try rum or whisky or sherry or fruit cordial or syrup. Even a spoonful of ice-cream or yoghurt is good.
Listen to Peter each and every Friday around 10.00 am on Sounds of the Mountains

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