Friday, March 20, 2009

Cooks Club Challenge #5

Here is my third success! Lemon Meringue Pie from Challenge No.5
This was lovely - both hubby & Dad went back for seconds - I love the way the lemon came together and just flowed into the pastry case.
Here is my next success - Chilli tomato & mushroom Fettucini. this dish was really nice - had a really nice kick to it. This is another dish I regularly make up for myself in a big batch and divide into single serves for later.
Now for the first FAILURE!
I have never had much luck using yeast or geletine in anything I have made in the past.
I figured, with my new found confidence, I would make Hot Cross Buns. I followed the instructions step by step, they looked quite nice in the pan before they went in the oven.
When they came out, they looked OK (if a little darker than what I would have liked ;-( ) but on the big taste test - BAA BAAM - they were so rubbery. The flavour was good, but the texture was so wrong!
This failure has not deterred me from trying other things - there are one or two more failures to come which I will report on a bit later - these failures are usually 'operator error' as a result of me not reading the instructions properly.
Will post some more cooking results soon.
Feel free to let me know what you think.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Cooks Club Challenge #1 2008

Here is the second dish I tried from Cook's Club Challenge - full thread can be found here.
Bacon & Pumpkin pasta - unfortunately, I did not make my own pesto, but used Leggo's pre-made basil pesto.
Usually, I am not a fan of vegetables but this dish has changed the way I think - especially about pumpkin. I now make up a batch of this at least once a month and divide it up into single serves to have later. It freezes well and reheats well (if treated gently).
That's two dishes I have tried and two successes - I am feeling very chuffed with myself and my new cooking ventures!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Easter Egg Slice

My Favourite CraftMad site has just published it first online journal here.
In this magazine there are heaps of Scrapbook & Card Challenges, Egg Decorating techniques, Off the Page Easter Projects, Stitched Easter Cards & also a recipe for this Easter Egg Slice.
The base is lovely and it is very sweet - almost too sweet ;-)
May I say that if you really love chocolate - this one may be for you!
The one good thing with trying this recipe is that I got to use my processor attachment for the first time. I recently bought a Kambrook Essentials Stick Mixer for my smoothies and it came with a small processing bowl. Up until this recent purchase, I have been without a processor - I figured I didn't need one. How wrong was my thinking!
Now another world has opened up for me - stay tuned for more experiments!

Cooks Club Challenge #1 - 2008

Here is the first recipe I decided to try from the Cook's Club Challenge - Satay Chicken - the full thread for this challenge can be found here.

This dish has become a firm favourite in this house - the sauce could be spiced up a bit if you wish, but the sauce is the reason we like this dish. This beautiful satay sauce does not have that 'kick/burn' that some have, nor is it too peanutty (? is that a word ??) or sweet.

You'll need 12 skewers.

Ingredients (serves 4) 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce 1 1/2 teaspoons honey 1 teaspoon turmeric 2 garlic cloves, crushed 1 tablespoon peanut oil 700g chicken tenderloins, halved lengthways 1 1/3 cups jasmine rice 6 green onions, sliced diagonally 1 can Ayam Satay Sauce (mild) 1 can Coconut Milk (light) olive oil cooking spray steamed Asian greens, to serve

Method Soak skewers in water for at least 30 minutes. Combine soy sauce, honey, turmeric, garlic and oil in a ceramic bowl. Add chicken pieces.. Turn to coat well. Thread chicken onto skewers. Spoon over marinade. Cover. Refrigerate for 1 hour or longer, if time permits. Cook rice, following packet directions. Use a fork to separate grains. Add onions. Place satay sauce and coconut milk in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes or until heated through. Preheat a barbecue grill or chargrill on medium. Spray skewers with oil. Cook for 6 minutes, turning, or until cooked. Place skewers on plates and drizzle with satay mixture. Serve with rice and Asian greens.

Tip: I mix the marinade in a zip lock bag then put the chicken in the bag & massage – then put bag in fridge and leave for as long as I can before threading onto skewers. When cooking, I do 1 ½ mins each side (four sides) I have also discovered Uncle Ben’s Bazmatti rice (in a packet) just a nice serve for two people and easy to cook! I throw in a chicken stock cube in the water with the rice!