Archive for the ‘Food’ Category

Homemade burger challenge

Saturday, December 3rd, 2016 | Food

Last month we tried mincing our own burgers and also tried the prawn cook-off challenge to see if we could tell the difference between fresh and frozen prawns.

What was the natural successor to these two events? A homemade burger challenge of course.

steaks-in-packaging

The premise was simple: two cuts, rump and rib eye. Which would produce the best burger?

Let the mincing begin!

stand-mixer-with-mincer

burgers

The results were good in both cases. Both cuts are fairly fatty when it comes to steak, but the rump produced a slightly fattier burger, making it Elina’s favourite. I preferred the rib eye.

A week later we also tried it with a sirloin. Sirloin is leaner, so produced a more meatier burger.

sirloin-burger

Buffalo worm stir-fry

Friday, December 2nd, 2016 | Food

buffalo-worms

Buffalo worms are small insects that look like tiny maggots. I know, sounds delicious right? I decided to stir-fry them in a fried rice-style dish: garlic, buffalo worms and prawns to start, then I added rice and peas, and finally an egg.

Here is the finished dish:

buffalo-worm-stir-fry

Buffalo worms do not have much of a flavour, so it tasted a lot like a regular fried rice with prawns.

Soy honey fish recipe

Thursday, December 1st, 2016 | Food

soy-honey-fish

One of my favourite ways to cook substantial fish fillets is to dip them in egg, breaded in panko breadcrumbs and then pan fried. This was the plan for a Friday night a few weeks ago when horror of horrors, I realised we had run out of eggs!

Instead, I mixed some soy sauce and runny honey together and used that to bind the breadcrumbs to the fish.

Now, if you are thinking “hmm, wouldn’t that make the fillet taste like the sweetest fish ever?” then you would be right, it does. It was still tasty, but definitely needs something to take some of the sweetness away. I will continue to experiment next time I run out of eggs.

Mary Berry Cooks

Monday, November 21st, 2016 | Books, Food

salt-crusted-fish

This is the second Mary Berry cookbook I have worked my way through, the other being Absolute Favourites.

I have eight recipes that are “keepers” from this book. That is two more than Absolute Favourites, and only beaten by two of the River Cottage cookbooks. It is useful for basics like roasting potatoes and vegetables, as well as some really nice starters, mains and desserts. I highly recommend this cookbook.

mary-berry-cooks

Deep fried camembert

Sunday, November 20th, 2016 | Food

camembert-1

This is a recipe from Le Cordon Bleu’s Complete Cooking Techniques. You slice the cheese, crumb it and put it in the fridge until it has regained its structure. Finally, you deep fry it.

camembert-2

Sauces

Thursday, November 17th, 2016 | Food

In the Worfolk household, we have themed months. I work through cookbooks fairly sequentially, and it takes me about a month to get through one, so each month ends to have a theme. For the past two months, that theme has been sauces.

I have been working with Michel Roux’s Sauces. I think it might be my new favourite cookbook. It has so many great recipes in there. It feels different to a regular cookbook and in some ways it makes things easier: if you have a great sauce you can literally just fry some chicken and serve it as is with the sauce.

The book is not without criticism. The recipes use so much veal stock. I don’t think I have ever seen veal for sale in UK supermarkets. Other ingredients are unavailable too. So far though, they have all been easy to substitute.

bread-sauce-wine-mustard

Bread sauce, mustard and white wine sauce.

parsley-nage

Parsley nage with lemon grass.

bearnaise-sauce

Bearnaise sauce.

juniper-sauce

Juniper sauce.

curried-mussels

Curried mussels.

sea-bass-shrimp-sauce

Sea bass and shrimp sauce.

michel-roux-sauces

Prawn cook-off challenge

Sunday, November 13th, 2016 | Food

prawn-cook-off-1

Can you tell the difference between fresh and frozen prawns? That was the best we put ourselves to. Two sets of raw king prawns, one which I put in the freezer for a month and then defrosted, and one that was fresh.

prawn-pans

Two identical frying pans, to cook each set of prawns in a mixture of oil and butter. They were otherwise unseasoned.

prawns-cooking

Finally they were served up on identical plates. Elina did not know which was which, but obviously I did.

prawn-cook-off-2

Could we tell the difference? Yes: but it is not clear which is best! The fresh prawns had more of a meaty texture, but the defrosted prawns actually had more of a prawn flavour.

Pineapple salsa

Saturday, November 12th, 2016 | Food

pineapple-salsa

This is a great salsa for Elina as it is onion-free and full of pineapple (surprisingly). It goes superbly with pork, and simple to make: chop up a chilli, lime and coriander and mix it all together.

I also tried Michel Roux’s tropical salsa. It is similar, but uses kiwi fruit and mango as well. This makes it quite watery, especially with the other ingredients, so not quite as good as the pineapple.

Shepherd’s pie

Tuesday, November 8th, 2016 | Family & Parenting, Food, Photos

shepherds-pie

God bless parents.

Chocolate cigars

Monday, November 7th, 2016 | Food, Photos

chocolate-cigars

Apparently you are not allowed to smoke in maternity wards anymore. Luckily, Elina got me some chocolate cigars instead.