Monday, 26 November 2012

Fish Pie

The Rockling has looked so lovely at the fishmonger's lately that I thought I would use it in a fish pie instead of salmon and haddock as recommended in Jamie Oliver's recipe from Jamie's Ministry of Food. It was simple to put together and the flavours not too fishy. It doesn't make the house smell either.

Serves 4-6 easily
1 kg potatoes peeled and chopped into chunks
1 grated carrot
2 sticks of celery grated (leave out the stringy bits)
150g cheddar cheese grated
1 lemon
1/2 fresh red chilli (optional)
4 sprigs of fresh flat-leaf parsley
600g fish fillets chopped into bite size chunks (no skin or bones)
125g king prawns, raw, peeled
olive oil

What to do...
Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6
Bring pot of salted water to the boil and add potatoes
Cook for 12 mins until soft
In a deep baking tray or dish (I dug out this old baking dish that I have had for about 37 years it is well used and not very pretty but it did the job!
Zest the lemon
Finely chop your chilli and parsley, including stalks.
Put zest, chilli, parsley, grated celery, carrot and cheese into the baking dish and mix together.
Put the fish and prawns into the baking dish and add the juice of the lemon, drizzle with olive oil and mix together well.
Drain and mash the potatoes
Add a couple of good lugs of olive oil and add a pinch of salt and pepper.  Mash until nice and smooth and spread evenly on top of the fish and grated veg.
Place in the preheated oven for around 40 minutes, or until cooked through and lovely and crispy and golden on top. Serve with veg or salad.  I will make this again!

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Glazed Ling with Sweet and Sour Shallots

Ling with Sweet and Sour Shallots and snipped chives
A little bit of "Simply Red" to cook by 

The man felt like chinese food as he always does! And then as if he read my mind said 'Let's give the Random Challenge a go'. The book came down from the bookshelf,  being an April baby it was no. 4  - a Gordon Ramsay book "Healthy Appetite". I haven't cooked from this book much and I don't know why (well I do know why cos, I have a bit of a thing about Gordon, like some do about Nigella. His TV shows have been done to death, to the point where now I can hardly stand him). Having said that, each time I have cooked from this book the recipes have all been really well balanced, flavoursome, restaurant quality meals. How can I fault that. The man flicked open the book randomly.
Ling! .......Ling? what is Ling? A fish, but what fish?

We went to our local fishmonger to see what he could recommend.  The Rockling caught my eye immediately, it looked really lovely and fresh. I asked for Ling not realising that it was one and the same. How silly did I feel. Anyway its a nice firm white fish from the cod family, so if no Ling is   available cod or whiting can be easily substituted.

 I laid the Ling out on the bench and cut it into four even steaks. Then set about putting together the sauce.  Funnily enough this has a definite asian feel but not too fishy or complicated and simple and easy to cook. So don't be afraid to give it a go.

4 skinless Ling fillets (Rockling) about 170g each
a little olive oil for oiling
60ml light soy sauce
2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
100ml white wine vinegar (I just used white vinegar)
50g soft brown sugar
1 teaspoon coriander seeds, lightly crushed
1 teaspoon black peppercorns, lightly crushed
3cm knob of fresh root ginger, peeled and finely grated
400g small shallots peeled
75ml dry white wine
150ml fish stock (I had mine in a bottle)
small handful of chives snipped.

What to do.....
Lay the fish in a lightly oiled large baking dish - set aside
Put both soy sauces, vinegar and sugar in a pot and stir over a low heat to dissolve the sugar
Increase the heat and and add crushed corriander, pepper and ginger

Boil for 8-10 minutes until liquid has reduced by half.
Leave to cool

Heat the oven to 180C
Blanch the shallots in a pot of boiling water for 10 mins until tender, then drain.

Pour the soy sauce mix over the fish in the baking dish and cook in the oven for 5 mins until the sauce begins to caramelise.
Add the shallots to the fish and add the white wine and fish stock.
Return to the oven and bake for another 6-8 minutes until the fish is just cooked through.

Transfer the fish to a warm plate and cover with tin foil to keep warm (approx 5-10mins).

Tip the remains of the baking dish, onions and sauce into a pot and boil for 10 mins until reduced to a sticky sauce.
Place the fish on warm plates and spoon over the shallots and sauce.

 Garnish with snipped chives.

It was yummy yummy!

I decided to serve this with some side dishes of steamed rice and quickly stir fried Pak Choy or chinese greens.

Stir fried Pak Choy
Heat a wok or frypan  - glaze with a little olive oil
Add a splash of hot water so that the wok sizzles
Throw in the Pak Choy and quickly stir fry, stirring continuously until the greens start to wilt.
Drizzle a little sesame oil just before you take the greens from the wok - easy and still a little crunchy.

I am entering this in Belleau Kitchens Random Recipe Challenge No. 22 random birthday numbers.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Pumpkin Choc Chip Muffins

After the Birthday Halloween Party there was so much pumpkin left that some serious pumpkin recipes needed to be sourced to rid us of all the vegetable.

A great way to get the children to eat that left over "Jack O Lantern" are these choc chip muffins.  Sugar and chocolate can be reduced as this recipe has both in abundance. Making them perfect for the lunchbox.  This recipe was from a purchase last year at the St. Kilda & Balaclava Kindergarten Fete - The Kinder Cook Book 2004  (see last year's post). Put together with donated recipes from the families of the kinder children of 2004.

1 2/3 cup plain flour
1 cup granulated sugar (less if you want them less sweet)
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice (cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger in the ratio of 2:2:1:1)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 cup cooked mashed pumpkin (I put mine in the blender so it was lovely and smooth)
1/2 cup butter - melted
1/2 cup of choc chips

Drunken left over Party Pumpkin
Happy Birthday Wes - what a great 5th birthday party
What to do...
Yielded lots of vegetable
Grease 12 cup muffin tray (or use paper cases)
Combine dry ingredients thoroughly.
In a separate bowl whisk together eggs,
Add cooled pumpkin and cooled butter until well blended
Great costumes
Stir in choc chips,
Gently fold wet mixture into dry ingredients until mixed and moist.
Spoon evenly into muffin cases (nearly two tablespoons into each case)
Bake at 180C for 20-25mins.
Makes 12 good size muffins
They are much better if left to cool if you can wait that long! I had one for breakfast.
Birthday Cake
Birthday Boy
Oooh bats!
Cousins with the loot!