Tuesday 22 November 2011

Celeriac Puree with Spinach

Celeriac is such a wonderful veg that often gets overlooked. It’s the root base of celery and is quite starchy and delicious. They’re often forgotten as substitutes for things such as mashed potatoes, chips and many other things. I used it as a side dish to salmon in this recipe and it was simply delicious. With the addition of spinach and a few other ingredients it’s a hearty meal and can even be served alone! Enjoy!

1 large celeriac
2 tbsp. soy cream or regular cream (optional)
250-300g washed baby spinach (use more or less depending on what you like)
1 heaped tbsp. mustard (I used maille Dijon)
Salt + pepper

To Start:

This plant is the knobbliest thing I’ve ever seen so you have to thoroughly wash it, make sure every nook and cranny is washed up.
When you’ve done your best at cleaning out the dirt, slice the brown bits off, almost as if you’re peeling it with a knife.
When you’ve broken down to the base of it, it should look like a smooth large potato.
Chop that up into chunks.

To Cook:
Place in boiling water and boil until soft.
Drain and add the cream and puree with a masher or hand blender.
Add the salt and pepper along with the mustard.
Next add the spinach and toss until the leaves are wilted.

This is an excellent side dish for any meat; you’ll be surprised at how low in calories and carbs it is as well! Enjoy!

Thursday 17 November 2011

Simply Roasted Chicken

What’s the big deal, why aren’t more people roasting whole chickens? It’s simply the most economical way to get value for your money when it comes to the chicken. It is also in my opinion the most delicious way to prepare a chicken. It not only provides a wonderful meal, it can provide delicious leftovers for sandwiches, soups, curries...etc. It’s so simple, you just put it in the oven and forget about it, and clean-up is a breeze. My chicken was a small one about 1kg (2lb) to feed just my husband and I but get one big enough to feed your family. And I’ll explain cooking time later.

1 chicken (I highly recommend you spend the extra money for free range or organic)
1 whole onion
2 tbsp. olive oil
Salt + Pepper
2 tsp. dried rosemary (optional)

To start:

Cut the onion in half and peel it.
First things first, cut off the ankles of the chicken, or the part directly below the drum stick, some chickens might come with it already removed or sometimes you can ask your butcher to remove it.
Next wash him under cold water just to get any bits of feathers off.
Place him in your oven safe dish, (this is where you get dirty) drizzle the oil on his skin, and massage the oil into every nook and cranny , this will ensure a crispy skin crust.
Next put the onion inside the cavity.
Season with salt and pepper and rosemary.

To Cook:

Heat an oven to 220C or about 425F, place him inside for about 20 minutes until you see the skin nicely browned.
Turn the oven down to 180C or 350F, for another 45-1hr. Depending on the size, watch the browning on the chicken, if it gets too brown turn down the temperature and slowly roast it until all the juices run clean.
You’ll want to let this rest for a few minutes before carving. Enjoy!

Monday 14 November 2011

Crabby Crab Cakes

I’ve made a trial and error of this recipe a few times and have finally come to one that I really enjoyed making and eating. These were absolutely delicious and I will definitely be making them again. This recipe serves 2, or can serve 4 as a starter.


2 cans of crab meat (170-200g each)
7-8 crackers/biscuits (I used saltines)
2 eggs
½ red pepper
½ red onion
2 tbsp. chopped coriander (cilantro)
1 tbsp. light mayonnaise
1 tsp. mustard powder
½ tsp. cayenne powder (adjust to your own taste)
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
Salt and Pepper
1-2 tbsp. oil for frying

To Start:
Dice red pepper and onion.
Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl until well incorporated.

To cook:
Heat the oil in a non-stick pan.
When hot form the patties in your hand, this mixture should make about 4 patties.
Lay down in the hot oil and cook about 5-6 minutes on each side, ensuring a golden brown crust.
Turn gently once while cooking and allow the same amount of cooking on the other side.
When done serve immediately. Enjoy!

My accompaniment sauce is as follows:
1 tbsp. light mayo
2 tbsp. fiery hot ketchup

Mix it up and slather on top. Delicious!

Thursday 10 November 2011

Easy Strawberry Shortcake Shortcut

Easy Strawberry Shortcake Shortcut

This is a simple dessert, I made from a store bought cake shell called a ‘flan’ shell, or you could use any type of sponge as the base. For my American friends, a simple angel food cake would work perfectly or better yet some pre-made biscuits. The important preparation is the strawberries.

2 large boxes of strawberries
1 flan base, angel food cake, biscuits etc..
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
¼ c granulated sugar
1 can of whipped cream (or whip some yourself!)

To Start:
Wash and discard any moldy or ugly strawberries.
Slice off the tops and slice any way you’d like and put them in a large bowl.
Add the sugar and the balsamic vinegar, and stir until mixed well.
(I let the sugar mixture to set about 1 hour mixing frequently, the idea is to draw out the juice in the strawberries)

To Finish:
On the base that you chose, spoon some of the juices to moisten, next swirl on a layer of whipped cream.
Next add a layer of strawberries and then a layer of whipped cream and continue until ingredients are finished.
Next spoon the juice over the top. And you’re done!

Tuesday 8 November 2011

Salmon and Spinach Stuffed Filo Parcels

I might have used a bit too much filo pastry to wrap the salmon but definitely gauge how much you think you need. I think 3-5 sheets per fillet of salmon should work perfectly. This dish can be a bit time consuming but if you give it a little patience and love it will be a delicious dish that you can impress your guests with. This recipe is for 2.


1 Package (270g) Filo Pastry – Follow the directions to thaw
2 Salmon fillets (250g total)
250g washed baby spinach
1 small onion
2 garlic cloves
2 tbsp butter melted
Salt and Pepper
Olive oil

To Start:
Heat a pan with the olive oil
Dice the onion and garlic.
When the pan is hot add the onion and garlic and sauté until fragrant.
Add the spinach and wilt down for about 6 minutes then take off heat.

Make the Parcels:

On a clean surface carefully lay down one sheet and with a pastry brush, brush the melted butter all over the sheet.
On top of that add another sheet of filo, butter and repeat again. 3 sheets should be perfect for one salmon fillet.
When the layering of filo is done, add a salmon fillet in the middle, top with wilted spinach mixture.
Fold the ends up on both sides, and then fold it together like a package, so as to seal it.
Brush the remaining butter on top.

To Cook:
Bake at 200C or 400F for about 10-15minutes or until golden brown.

Serve with a salad or potatoes. Enjoy!