Saturday, December 31, 2011
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Sunday, April 11, 2010
Olives baked in white wine, lemon, rosemary and thyme
Steamed carrots marinated in fennel seeds, coriander seeds, sherry vinegar, orange juice, toasted almonds and mint
Almond tart with mascarpone and mandarins marinated in saffron syrup and served with toasted pine nuts
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Yes, we all left dinner a little wiser.
I like food, a lot. And I've eaten quite a bit of it in my time. Most of it tastes good, but usually much like something I had last week/month/at an ethnic wedding. This was super yum, and unique. Smokey....tomatoey....not fishy but marinesque somehow. Great textures, popping peas, smooth rice and creamy onion-ness.
The biggest compliment I can give it is that I've never liked mussels before. ever. I ate them all. Plus prawns: heads, brains, shells, spindly legs included. Crunchy and aromatic and somehow disturbing, but fun. Queen of prawns indeed. Superb effort Joel.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Monday, March 22, 2010
Covered the streets of Rome to welcome the triumphant return of the Emperor Nero.
Enjoyed at Roman orgies as a broth to ensure Venus, the goddess of love, could be worshipped, energetically.
The colour of choice for Buddhas robes.
And most importantly, the founding flavour of the Paella.
A dinner party with only one course. Paella.
Sunday 30 March 2010. 7pm.
To reserve a seat at the table, email me email@example.com
Monday, May 25, 2009
Might give myself more than a day to prepare next time.
I could never have pulled it off without the help of MJ, Becki and Linda. Others deserving an appreciative beverage include Jessamy, Jordan and Croz.
Strawberries macerated in mint and lemon juice with a sweet balsamic cream
Persimmon wedge draped in brie and wrapped in prosciutto topped with honeyed crispy sage
Rosemary roasted beetroot skewered with goats chevre resting on crushed walnut lines
Ras el hanout spiced shredded chicken with currants, lemon and toasted almonds served on Turkish bread
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
I made it through the tastings, the pressure tests, the mystery boxes and the invention tests. But it was the humble egg that got me knocked out. And the ongoing inability to cry on-demand also played against me.
Anyway - I had my time in the sun, chopping more fingers than onions, getting creative under the glare of the cameras with George telling me to 'clean up this mess, yeah?'
My 15 minutes may have passed but the recipe that got me through will live on in kitchens around Australia (unlikely).
Blackened corn topped with shredded chicken and a poached egg.
Spices (cumin, paprika cinnamon, salt, pepper)
Herbs (flat-leaf parsley, mint) Olive oil
For the chicken
Bring deep pan of water to a simmer with 3 cloves of garlic, a few stalks of parsley, salt and juice of half a lemon. Submerge chicken and poach for approx 10 minutes. Remove and rest on plate then begin shredding into strips using a fork. Place chicken shreds in a bowl and add lemon zest, handful of hydrated currants (place currants in cup of hot water for 30 min until plump), chopped parsley and mint (more parsley than mint), spices (more cumin than paprika and more paprika than cinnamon - maybe 1-2 tsp of cumin…and enough salt and pepper) and good olive oil - lots of the stuff. Go crazy on it and mix through until the chicken mixture becomes moist.
For the cornRub corn cob with oil and season with salt, pepper and cumin. Place in oven and grill for around 10-15 minutes until corn kernels begin to blacken.
For the poached eggTo poach the perfect egg, crack the egg onto a large spoon, such as a serving spoon, and gently lower into boiling water with a splash of vinegar if available. Immediately turn the heat down to a simmer and continue to hold the spoon while using another spoon to gently cover the egg (quinelle style) so the whites begin to whiten. Continue this process until the egg firms up and then allow it to slide off into the water to finish the cooking process - this final stage will only take 10-20 seconds.
To plate the dish
Shave the blackened corn off the cob and top with the shredded chicken. Carefully place the poached egg on top of the shredded chicken, dust with toasted cumin powder and finish with a squeeze of lemon juice. Garnish with shredded mint or parsley if you feel like it. Allow the yolk of the poached egg to 'dress the dish' as described by Matt Preston.
Enjoy with friends who don't wear cravats and forbid the use of the expression 'chop chop' or 'bags of flavor' or 'this is the most important dish of your lives.' Enough, back to my audience of two at home in Melbourne.
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
A run and swim in the salty waters of Port Phillip Bay was the perfect preparation for the feast. KR took out the run, JB took on the sting rays while BM was too busy searching for the elusive red mullet.
Friday, April 3, 2009
Maker of all things salt. Most famously, the Salted Caramel Tart ™
Who would you trust more, someone with a crane or someone with a sharp knife?
Thanks for the review undercut – too kind of course.
Was it worth the battle?
The onion, the weather, the strange clucking animal with a disproportionately sized brain?
Well, luckily there were no onions involved and everything else was impressively creative, despite Joel asking for a harsh review. Oh, and the weather surprisingly didn’t throw me into oblivion, so, I might as well get to it.
First, the potato; presented as a rosti with rosemary oil and a white anchovy. There is a sign of someone who can cook (or possibly someone who can eat), and I believe that is someone who isn’t afraid to use salt. The rosti itself was a good platform for the anchovy and the oil, and despite what you usually get with rostis, not greasy. The only thing was that the rosti was too starchy and could have benefit from being rinsed in cold water after being grated.
The brussel sprouts were probably my favourite. Very simple and clean by being pan fried and served with crispy prosciutto, roasted hazelnuts and pan fried sage. The presentation of this became a little tricky, but negotiated in the end between a smash-pile and a bridge. The flavours themselves were very straightforward and, in lack of a better way to put it, ballsy. The saltiness of the prosciutto was cut by the freshness of the sprouts, which still held their crunch and mellowed by the nuts.
The next course I think was unconsciously presented. That sentence, though vague, can be explained. So, rocket, blackened corn, chicken which has been poached and shredded with raisins and a hard-boiled egg was presented as a nest; kind of fitting since, if you think about it, we were eating the mother and its unhatched spawn-ovum (not that this egg belonged to this particular bird). The chicken was a drier than Joel would have liked, but the corn and the egg hid that quite well. Quite a mild dish that followed such a gutsy second course, but its subtlety was appreciated.
By this stage, I was getting full, so I didn’t get to finish the dessert. Figs were cooked in a filo pastry with thyme, served next to salted-caramel walnuts and a goats cheese and vanilla icecream, presented in the skins of figs. A very impressively constructed dish, as pointed out, a play on a cheese board, so of course I liked it. The pastry was subtly sweet and ended with a savoury tone with the thyme, which went well with the salt from the walnuts and the goats cheese icecream. It seemed that no combination in this could go wrong, and had the textures and temperatures covered on all bases. The only thing is that the walnuts could have benefited from being toasted before covered in caramel, but that is only personal preference. Though, when I am full and keep going back, you know you have a gold star.
Oh, and I should probably mention this was all cooked on an electric stove and the oven broke. So, I say, thanks kid. I’ll come back when it is raining a second shower over me and blowing me sideways.
Sunday, March 22, 2009
Potato and lemon rosti served with white anchoy, rosemary oil dusted with paprika
Brussel sprouts pan fried in butter and sage lemon and served with crispy prosciutto and roasted hazelnuts
Poached chicken shredded with currants, roasted roasted almonds, flat leaf parsley, mint and a middle-eastern spice blend served with blackened sweet corn soft (hard...) egg and lemon rocket
Fresh figs baked in filo with thyme and honey served with salted caramel walnuts and figs filled with goats cheese vanilla ice cream.
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Potato (Potato, a mans vegetable - as George Calombaris would say*)
Brussel sprouts (Brussel sprouts, from Brussels - GC)
Chicken (Cluck cluck - GC)
Figs (Figs worked for Adam right? - GC)
*When we were doing the challenge, GC introduced our mystery ingredients with a byline as i've done above. The apple introduction was a laugh, valid point though, apples are "yummy"...
What to create from these mystery ingredients...
I'll have the timer going, the cameras focused and the host smiling, I might even try chopping onions again, without the blood loss sustained in the Master Chef studio...
Will I make it through to the next round or have to tearfully face the cameras and go home with a big fail??
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
And what a week it was - quality food (cooked by us, not the catering company), quality people (with the odd exception) and great TV (Channel 10 editing has a bit of work to do...)
So top 35 for Global Gobbler. Questionable given my inability to chop onions...
A menu inspired by the "Mystery Box" challenge - without pork - will follow shortly.
Let's hope the guests are as honest as the judges...although all cravats will be banned...
Friday, January 30, 2009
Three dishes for Messrs Preston, Calombaris and Mehigan at MasterChef audition - day 2.
White gazpacho served Martini style with a toothpick of grapes.
Cannelini beans cooked with saffron, chorizo and thyme.
White witlof layered with aioli, marinated red peppers and white anchovies.
The food stood up apparently. The personality didn't. Advice from the judges: "More footy, less yoga, yeah?" Ha, thanks George.
No photos (cameras weren't allowed during filming) but MasterChef begins on Channel 10 in April/May and Global Gobbler may show up if the 'character' making spherical peas doesn't hog all the air time ; )
Thursday, January 29, 2009
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
First and only course
Homemade pappardelle tossed with freshly made basil pesto and topped with confit Roma tomatoes and homemade labna (yogurt cheese) coated in roasted pine nuts and thyme.
Basil and tomatoes from the garden (c/o JB's Vegie Patch - installing vegie patches across Melbourne. For enquiries call Joel or Jesse on 0438 329 218 or 0407 712 921. Marketing plug ends.)
Pasta from my Marcato pasta machine.
Labna made from Greek yogurt.
Global Gobbler takes on the masses.
Saturday, January 17, 2009
Monday, January 12, 2009
Loved the prawns with sidekicks of crispy sage and hazelnut salt.
Sourdough with honey and balsamic feta was ok - bread needed a good soaking in oil though.
Anchovy, almond and orange zest 'arrangement' was interesting - in a bad way...
Nice way to kick off the night - a plate full of prawns would have broadened smiles around the table.
Home-made spaghetti. The taste is almost fruity rather than simply a plate of carbs. The walnut, tomato and roasted pepper sauce was luckily subtle and the buffalo mozzerella with basil lifted the whole dish.
Pomegranate, zucchini ribbon and parmesan was an experiement that worked. Sweet, creamy and sharp.
Almost a shame to put anything on the pasta - some extra virgin, garlic, salt and pepper. Love match.
A sharp, almost too sharp, lime curd - overdid the lime juice a little I think... And if you can't decide between sour cream, yogurt, mascaporne or cream - give quark a try. Whipped with vanilla bean and topped with lime zest.
The food was good, the people were better.
On the night I fell in love with my Marcato pasta machine.
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
A pasta machine lay waiting for some attention. The first weekend without plaster on my recently-broken arm presented the perfect opportunity to test it out on friends who would either enjoy the food, or drink enough that it would appear they enjoyed the food...
No real theme behind the menu - pasta was the star.
Rye sourdough topped with feta and crushed walnuts marinated in honey, olive oil, thyme and balsamic vinegar and topped with fresh sliced cherry tomatoes.
King prawns marinated in sauvignon blanc, lemon juice, sage and olive oil then pan fried and served on wild rocked and sprinkled with hazelnut salt and crispy sage.
Fresh spaghetti dressed in olive oil and served with a walnut, garlic, tomato and red pepper sauce and topped with buffalo mozzerella and shredded basil.
Zucchini ribbon salad with mint, pomegranate seeds, shaved parmesan, olive oil and lime juice.
Baked lime curd topped with vanilla bean infused quark, topped with caramelised lime wedge, lime zest and fresh raspberries.