Sunday, June 29, 2008

Making Sticky date pudding

To start chop 250g pitted dates then place into a bowl, add 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda and pour 1 cup of boiling hot water over the top.

Set aside for 20mins.

You will also need:

90g butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
1 3/4 cups Self-Raising Flour, sifted

Using an electric mixer, beat butter, sugar and vanilla until pale and creamy.

Add eggs, 1 at a time and beat well after each egg.
Fold through flour and add the date mixture.

Mix together with a big spoon or spatula.

Pour mixture into a greased cake tin and place into a preheated oven baking for 30-40 mins at 170 degrees Celsius.
Butterscotch Sauce

Melt 1 cup of brown sugar and 50g of butter. From my experience if you let the sugar caramelize a little you will get a much better flavour.

Pour in a tub of 300ml thickened cream (or double cream).

Whisk together until combined.

Let the sauce boil (and bubble) until it thickens a little. Remove the pot from the heat and set aside to cool down.

When ready take the cake out of the oven.

Leave it on a cake rack to cool down.

Serve with a scoop of ice cream and top with the butterscotch sauce.


Saturday, June 28, 2008

Making Osso Bucco

I've had a recipe ripped out from a magazine sitting on my desk for ages. It wasn't till I saw Joel's post about making osso bucco that I felt inspired to give it a go myself.

Step 1. Brown 3 pieces of veal osso bucco and set aside when ready.

In another pot (preferably a heavy one) soften some vegetables with a slosh of oil and a pinch of salt. I used onion, tomato and celery. I meant to add carrots but didn't realise that I had ate them all during the week.

Place veal into pot adding a can of tomatoes, prawns (optional) and a cup of white wine. Season and add enough water to cover the meat. From here you have two options:

1. Bring to boil then turn down heat and simmer for 2.5 hrs (until meat is tender and falling off the bone).

2. If your pot allows, place the lid on and put the whole pot in the oven to slow cook for 3 hrs.

(Not the best photos because you can't see the meat!) But when ready, serve on a bed of rice (or mash) sprinkle a bit of parsley to garnish and enjoy! In my case with a glass of white (Oyster Bay).

Thanks Joel for the inspiration, it is great comfort food indeed.

Making Takoyaki

boiled octopus (cut into bite-size pieces)
shallot (chopped)
prawns (boiled, peeled and chopped)
batter (dashi soup, flour, eggs)

Heat pan, when hot add oil followed by a layer of batter. Proceed to place prawns, shallot and octopus into each slot when done add a layer of batter to cover.

This part is hard to it cooks start to fold the the excess batter into a ball shape.

Work quickly!

Then flip the balls to ensure both sides are cooked evenly

Remove from pan

Top with Japanese Mayo, takoyaki sauce and bonito flakes (I forgot to buy seaweed)

Ta-da! It tasted awesome!

Finish with a glass of Japanese Plum wine and you'll be in heaven!