Ingredient Challenge To Use An Ingredient In A New Way

I am behind in my own challenges, and so I want to thank everyone else for doing them. I made a cake with dried fruit, but it did not work and until the adapted recipe is perfected I am not going to share it with you. The disaster effort was turned into rusks, so all was not lost. This week, the challenge is to use an ingredient you always have in your fridge in a new way. As usual, let me know you have taken part, and please link back to my blog. There is no end date!

PREVIOUS CHALLENGES ROUND UP

My email let me down with Presto Pasta Nights and I did not get Claudia who blogs as Honey From A Rock, submission for Grilled Brats With Sauerkraut And Apples On Egg Noodles. Cindy made some dried fruit tarts. Another Day has contributed her recipe for barm brack. JamieAnne has made carrot raisin bread.

Thanks all for taking part icon smile Ingredient Challenge To Use An Ingredient In A New Way

Tandy

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Prawns with Oak Smoked Red Bell Pepper

Sometimes, not telling the truth can be because you do not want to hurt someone. But, in my mind that is considered lying by omission. It is not really a case of “what you know won’t hurt you” as you always end up getting hurt, no matter what. Most recently I have had to keep the truth from a friend. This is not the same as keeping a secret. Keeping the truth means not telling your friend something you know. And, this is even harder when she asks you directly. I have only once been in this position before now. A lifetime ago, it seems, a friend of mine was having an affair. One day his wife, who was also a friend, asked me outright “is Andy having an affair”. I thought the telephone was not the right ‘place’ to answer the question and so I fobbed off the situation and instead asked her something else – and tried to make arrangements to see her. This was on a Friday, she had just returned from hospital and her husband was not really concerned about her and this is what sparked the little bit of self doubt. On the Monday she watched South Africa play cricket and lo and behold, in the crowds was her husband, with his girlfriend. On the Tuesday we had a long chat on the phone – we were having an awards dinner that night and their son was getting a trophy. We spoke about mundane things – like what we were going to wear. They did not arrive for the dinner and I made phone call after phone call to see what had gone wrong. Little did I know that she had committed suicide. After all my studying and working, I had missed all the signs and I was the last person to speak to her. I never got to answer her question, and I will never know if the truth might have changed things. She was an amazing mom. Her son was quite the fussy eater and so she decided with her daughter that she would eat whatever was put on the table. So, when we went for dinner, there sat the four year old daughter, eating prawns as if they were a normal part of her diet and not something ugly to be left alone.

c2a9 prawns with oak smoked red bell pepper Prawns with Oak Smoked Red Bell Pepper

© prawns with oak smoked red bell pepper

PRAWNS WITH OAK SMOKED RED BELL PEPPER

ingredients:

1 tablespoon olive oil

15g butter

2 cloves garlic, chopped

6 prawns

salt and freshly ground black pepper for seasoning

juice of half a lemon

1 teaspoon oak smoked red bell pepper

method:

heat the oil and the butter in a frying pan

add the garlic and sauté until soft without browning them

add the prawns and season

add the lemon juice and the smoked red pepper

toss well in the sauce to make sure they are nicely coated and evenly cooked

Printable Version

Tandy

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Recipe For Lemon Icing

My cinnamon buns called for lemon icing but unfortunately this was not going to happen in my household. Ordinarily I use a product called sugalite to make icing with, but the last batch I purchased did not work. I used it to make a sugar free pavlova and threw out 6 egg whites and 300g of sugalite. This product costs R324 per kg so you can imagine my delight. Thinking I had made an error I was not too concerned about making butter icing a few weeks later – 250g of butter and a kilo of sugalite later, I had no icing and a sense of humour failure. I wrote a letter of complaint and Shirley Peak who is the home economist for Huletts called me and basically told me I did not know what I was doing! She promised to get back to me after the weekend and two months later I had not heard from her. I sent another email, and this one landed on the desk of Natalie Marais. She collected the remaining 700g of product and I have been sent 10 packets to use. Shirley called again and her words to me “I deal with so many complaints I cannot remember yours” left me speechless. So, unless I can find a suitable substitute for icing sugar, butter icing is not going to be a part of my baking for a while.

cinnamon buns Recipe For Lemon Icing

cinnamon buns

Lemon Icing
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • 250mls icing sugar
  • 1 lemon, juice and zest
Method
  1. sift the icing sugar into a bowl
  2. mix in the zest and juice until you have a slightly runny icing
Cooks Notes
what I did: I melted 85g white sugar free chocolate and added 2 drops of lemon essential oil

For conversions click here
Tandy

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Recipe For Gorgonzola Mushrooms

Those of you who are regular readers of my blog will know that I really need routine. And part of that routine has been writing down my recipes every night. I used to keep a food diary and it evolved with this blog to a recipe diary. I am so far behind in putting the recipes from my notes onto my blog that I have in fact stopped jotting down recipes every night. This has been quite liberating as I can just cook comfort food. And, Dave is also cooking which has been wonderful for me. It has been a mini time out. With that in mind, I will share with you the fact that I made this dish for Gorgonzola mushrooms on the 25th of February! My mid year sojourn will at least mean that sometime in the near future I will be blogging ‘current recipes’ and not ones that appear to be out of season, or with photographs taken in haste.

Gorgonzola Mushrooms Recipe For Gorgonzola Mushrooms

Gorgonzola Mushrooms

Gorgonzola Mushrooms
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • 6 rashers bacon
  • 100g Gorgonzola
  • 4 steak mushrooms, stalk removed
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
  • 20mls basil pesto
Method
  1. preheat the oven to 200° Celsius
  2. cut up the bacon and fry in a dry pan until the fat has rendered down
  3. remove from the pan and set aside while you pan fry the flesh side of the mushrooms
  4. season the exposed side, add the cut up bacon and the gorgonzola
  5. bake in the oven for 5 minutes
  6. then put under the grill for a further 5 minutes
  7. top each mushroom with a teaspoon of the pesto

Tandy

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Recipe For Calamari Risotto

Usually during the Tour De France my friend Kim and I watch ‘together’. She will be in the lounge of her home in Australia and I will be in the lounge of my home in Gordons Bay. We sit with our laptops, chatting on IM and we discuss where they are, how the riders are doing and generally what has happened during our day. It is so amazing that she can be 6 hours time wise away and about 20 hours of travelling away from me. As soon as she hits the enter button on her laptop, I can read what is on her mind. So, during the tour I have been coming home to chat to her, but she has not been online. It is usually about 17h00 here when I get home, and I know that means it is bed time for her, but I miss her. In order to keep myself company, I will have to cook! A risotto is a perfect meal as it takes time to prepare everything, and there is still 35km to go of today’s tour.

Calamari Risotto Recipe For Calamari Risotto

Calamari Risotto

Calamari Risotto
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon lemon infused olive oil
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 200g Arborio rice
  • ½ cup white wine
  • 500mls vegetable stock, on simmer
  • 2 pinches flaked salt
  • ½ cup frozen peas
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper for seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon mixed herbs
  • 30g butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 chilli, halved
  • 250g calamari
  • small handful fresh rocket, roughly chopped
Method
  1. heat the lemon infused olive oil in a large frying pan
  2. sauté the shallot and garlic, without colouring
  3. add the celery and cook until soft
  4. add the rice and stir until it starts toasting
  5. add the wine and allow the alcohol to burn off, and the rice to absorb the wine
  6. add one ladle of stock and stir until it is absorbed
  7. add a pinch of flaked salt and another ladle of stock
  8. once again stir while it is being absorbed
  9. add another pinch of flaked salt and continue to add a ladle of stock at a time
  10. you don’t need to stir all the time, but make sure you stir often and don’t add another ladle until the stock has been completely absorbed
  11. when you have one ladle of stock left, add the peas and adjust the seasoning and add the herbs
  12. now add the last ladle and check for doneness
  13. at the same time as adding the last ladle of stock, heat the olive oil and 15g butter in a separate pan
  14. add the chilli and the rest of the garlic
  15. flash fry the calamari on a high heat until done
  16. take the risotto of the heat and add 15g butter and mix in thoroughly
  17. remove the chilli from the calamari
  18. top with the calamari, the pan juices and garnish with the rocket

Click on the links for conversions and notes.

I submitted this recipe for Presto Pasta Nights, last week to  Debbi Does Dinner but my email seems to have got lost in the ethernet, so I am sending it off to Anu of Truth Personified for this week.

Tandy

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Recipe For Pan Fried Fennel

After making my fennel cake I had quite a bit of fresh fennel left over and so I decided to experiment with cooking it. The first night I cooked the fennel in the griddle pan, and even though it looked good, I did not quite get it cooked enough. Fennel has a lovely anise flavour and is a key ingredient in making absinthe. Fennel is indigenous to the Western Cape and can be seen growing wild in most uninhabited tracts of land around our house. The entire plant can be used, from the bulb to the seeds. I chose some young fennel to use for this recipe, and you need to make sure that the ones you choose are firm.

Pan Fried Fennel Recipe For Pan Fried Fennel

Pan Fried Fennel

Pan Fried Fennel
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • 15mls olive oil
  • 15g butter
  • 1 fennel bulb, sliced
  • 5 sundried tomatoes, sliced
Method
  1. heat the oil and the butter in a frying pan
  2. cook the fennel until soft
  3. add the sundried tomatoes and cook until warm
  4. suggestion: serve as a side dish to accompany fish

Click on the links for conversions and notes.

Tandy

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Something Sweet Challenge: Dried Fruit

I switched my challenges around so that I could host Presto Pasta Nights and so this week, it is the turn for something sweet. I have been baking up a storm in my kitchen, first a batch of biscotti for Delheim which were taste tested by 9 people and all enjoyed them. I am going to make another batch with fructose to see how that turns out. But in the meantime, the challenge this week is to bake something using dried fruit. If you take part in the challenge, leave a comment here and link back to my blog.

PREVIOUS CHALLENGES ROUND UP

Sue has come up with an innovative way to preserve her ClemenGolds! Cindy was a bit to late with her pasta dish for the PPN round up, her dish of baked pork sausages wrapped in bacon, with fusilli and tomato gravy sounds like a perfect winter warmer.

Tandy

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Friday’s Food Quiz Number 60

It is Saturday morning, and before I head to my kitchen to bake I am doing Pink’s quiz!

1. What are the main ingredients of a Cassoulet?

This dish is the regional dish of the area where we spent our holiday this year. Three cities claim each to have the best – Toulouse, Carcassonne and Castelnaudary. Dave tried it twice in Tolouse and once in Castelnaudary. Unfortunately most of Carcassonne was closed when we were there due to it being Easter otherwise he may have tried four different dishes. We have brought back with us a meal for two of canned cassoulet! The main ingredient in the dish is haricot beans. These are cooked into a stew and to this duck leg and the local pork sausage is added.

2. What is seasoned flour?

I am hoping this is as simple as adding seasoning to flour! I usually add salt and pepper to my flour to season it. Sometimes I may add cayenne pepper, herbs and/or spices. 

3. Which fruit is the richest known source of the antioxidant called lycopene?

As far as I know, tomatoes are the richest source of lycopene. The difference between wisdom and knowledge: Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit, wisdom is knowing you should not add it to a fruit salad.

4. Why is it advisable to rest steak for a couple of minutes after cooking?

To allow the meat to relax and the juices to settle

5. What is a galette?

This is interesting to me, as there are two types of galettes. The one is a buckwheat pancake which is served in Brittany and when we were there I ate quite a few of them. The other is a flat cake.

6. What is chimichurri?

I love making this! It is a green sauce from South America made of coriander, chilli, garlic, and olive oil

7. Where is Polenta a staple food?

I do not enjoy polenta, even though it is Italian!

8. What is Chaîne des Rôtisseurs?

I can guess as one word looks similar to the English – ?? of  Rotisseries? A French legion of roasters?? 

9. What is a a Pink Lady?

An apple

10. What is a sommelier?

A wine steward

Tandy

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Presto Pasta Nights 222 Round Up

I woke up last Friday morning to the very first submission for Presto Pasta Nights 222 and I was so excited to get stuck in and think about how I was going to present to you, the most amazing collection of pasta dishes. Thanks again Ruth, for letting me host! For those of you new to my challenge round ups, please click on the person’s name to see the recipe they submitted.

Presto Pasta Nights 222 Presto Pasta Nights 222 Round Up

Presto Pasta Nights 222

  • Jules of Pictures of all my Princesses took a favourite Moroccan Chicken recipe and tweaked it! I am a fan of anything Moroccan and love that this dish was the first submission.

 

  • Rachel, The Crispy Cook, has shared with us her recipe for Gluten Free Smoked Paprika Noodles with Butter, Cheese and Herb Drizzle. For anyone who is gluten intolerant please follow the link for more recipes, and blog events.

 

  • Jacqueline of the Tinned Tomatoes has shares with us Spaghetti con Pesto alla Siciliana. She is so right, everything sounds better in Italian!

 

  • Elizabeth from The Law Student’s Cook Book, has shared her recipe for vegetable lasagna using eggplant – not her favourite vegetable, but this dish makes it worth cooking again!

 

  • Madge, The Vegetarian Casserole Queen, has submitted a recipe for Balsamic Pasta Salad, to celebrate summer and her love of carbohydrates!

 

  • Elizabeth who blogs over at Etherwork, has shared with us her recipe for Spaghettini Puttanesca, which she loves to have on a hot summer’s evening.

 

  • Ruth, the founder of PPN who blogs at Once Upon A Feast, has submitted a recipe for Steak & Mushroom Pasta. This is a great use of left overs!

 

  • Suvidha whose blog is Suvhida’s Kitchen has sent in her Tomato Penne Pasta recipe.  She has a clever way of getting this ready in no time at all!

 

  • Val from More Than Burnt Toast (I love the blog name) made Arugula Pesto Pasta with Asparagus, Ricotta and Bacon. Anything with my favourite condiment (bacon) works for me icon smile Presto Pasta Nights 222 Round Up

 

  • Stash over at The Spamwise Chronicles, threw together this dish of pasta with sardines, fava beans and tomato. This recipe is perfect for me to try next time fava beans are in season.
  • Sue from Couscous & Consciousness has made Pasta E Ceci, a dish warming for the soul as well as the tum I think.
  • Xiaolu at 6 Bittersweets has posted a recipe for Cherry Pistachio Orange Cocoa Couscous. My taste buds are intrigued by this salad.
  • Tigerfish who blogs at An Escape to Food has submitted a recipe for Steamed Clams Capellini Aglio e Olio. We both have small kitchens so I can relate to the perfect simplicity of this dish.
  • Lidia, Bianca’s and Jordan’s Mom, has made Macaroni Schotel With Chicken Ragout. Schotel is a new word for me! It means dish in Dutch for those of you, who like me was wondering.

 

  • JamieAnne, whose blog is A Dash of Domestic, has made Beefy Orzo. This recipe has been specifically made from a caring heart.

 

  • Claire from Purely Food is a PPN first timer and she has submitted her recipe for Aubergine Polpette. This is a great meat free recipe worth trying.

 

  • Theresa, The Food Hunter’s Guide To Cuisine, has shared her recipe for Pasta with Chickpeas and Fresh Rosemary. This Scott Conant recipe is a healthy meal that can be prepared on a work night.
  • Colleen, aka browniegirl, has posted a recipe for Heirloom Tomato Zucchini and Chorizo Spaghetti. This is something I could tuck into right now!

I would like to thank everyone who participated in Presto Pasta Nights – now that I have come to the end, I know that next time I will change the format a little bit – but it has been fun icon smile Presto Pasta Nights 222 Round Up

Take a look at my Sweet Potato Gnocchi With Exotic Mushrooms And Blue Cheese recipe!

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Exotic Mushrooms and Blue Cheese Presto Pasta Nights 222 Round Up

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Exotic Mushrooms and Blue Cheese

Tandy

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Recipe For Sweet Chilli Sauce Duck

A friend wants to know a bit about my first job and what I used my wages for. I was 16 when I first went to work. I started off as a cashier at our local Spar and progressed to working in the deli and the bakery. I earned a basic wage and got it in a brown envelope once a week. I cannot even tell you how much I earned, but I can tell you that it went to paying my phone bill. I had a younger sister who at 12 discovered the telephone. She would come home from school and straight away call her best friend – with whom she had just spent the day at school with, and they would talk all afternoon. So of course, that meant I could not speak to my friends! I moaned to my dad, and in his most practical manner said that they would get a phone line for me, if I paid the bill. So, I had my own phone line and I paid the bills. Of course, if I were in the same boat now, I might forego the phone and spend the money on eating out – I would be this young foodie, eating her way through all these fancy restaurants, trying all these fancy meals. But instead, I am a little bit older, have a fantastic job, and I can do the foodie thing right at home. Duck is the one foodie item most people would rather eat out that try at home, but I assure you, it is so worth making duck for yourself.

Sweet Chilli Sauce Duck Recipe For Sweet Chilli Sauce Duck

Sweet Chilli Sauce Duck

Sweet Chilli Sauce Duck
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • 15mls sweet chilli sauce
  • 15mls honey
  • 2 duck breasts
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
Method
  1. preheat the oven to 180° Celsius
  2. in a small pan, gently heat the chilli sauce and honey
  3. score the skin of the duck
  4. season the flesh
  5. place the duck into a cold frying pan and turn on the heat
  6. allow the fat the render down
  7. turn onto the flesh side for one minute
  8. remove from the pan and place into an oven proof dish, skin side up
  9. cover with the glaze and cook in the oven for 8 minutes
  10. allow to rest before serving

Tandy

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