I had a school assignment to do involving food tech, we had to cook one thing of our choice in under 100 minutes. I decided to cook this, roasted lamb backstrap with carrots, asparagus, parsnip puree and a beetroot jue. Now I know you might be wondering what a beetroot jue is, so I’ll tell you. A normal jue is stock and usually red wine reduced down to 1/10 of the original volume, but we weren’t allowed to cook with alcohol on school grounds, so I used beetroot juice instead.
When you add the beetroot juice to the stock and reduce it down, it concentrates not only the flavour but the colour to. It has a dark, vibrant purple-ly red colour after being reduced, and the flavour bursts in your mouth. When you pair the slight sweetness and earthy flavour of the beetroot with the strong saltiness of the stock you get an amazingly complex flavour, yet only using two simple ingredients. To make the beetroot jus, you just add two diced beetroots to 1 cup of beef or lamb stock. That’s it! Pair it up with any red meat for a stunning sauce.
Hey everyone, just letting you know that even though it has been quiet here it has been really busy over at instagram. If you want to see what I’ve been up to I’m @theboychef. I’ve got a tonne of recipes I’m writing up, but in the mean time here is some photos of what I have been doing.
So just bask with me for a moment in the glory that is this milkshake…
Seriously, how good looking is my afternoon tea? Salted caramel sauce and chocolate ganache mixed with icy milk, topped with whipped cream, cake crumbs, pecans, meringue kiss and more salted caramel and chocolate ganache- what more could you need?
There isn’t really a method (or measured ingredients) to this madness, just layer it up and enjoy! Or, if you can, head to Canberra and get a Freakshake, which this is inspired by. So much excessiveness…. and deliciousness….a cream… and caramel…. I think I need another one!
Regional flavours at Brisbane was the best thing in the world! I know I said that last year, but each year gets better and better. I was lucky enough to meet Paul West again and was completely inspired by his talks to just keep it simple, fresh and therefore, tasty! If you are reading this Mr West, thank you again for the inspiration and the reminder good cooking starts with good food. And thank you also for the insight you gave into the cooking industry, that was very interesting and helpful (and funny!). So without further ado, this is my simple cherry tomato pasta inspired by the wholesome, real of River Cottage Australia.
Roasted Cherry Tomato Pasta
500g of mixed cherry tomatoes
3 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons of olive oil
salt and pepper
250g of pasta
olive oil and parmesan to serve
Preheat the oven to 150 degrees celsius. Line a baking tray with baking paper or foil. Spread the tomatoes out evenly on the tray and drizzle with olive oil. Add the garlic cloves and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for at least 40 mins or until soft. Once they are nearly ready, bring a large pot of water to boil, cook the pasta until al dente. When cooked, drain the pasta, toss in a large bowl with tomatoes and the juices from the pan. Drizzle with a little more olive oil, or to your liking. Season with salt and pepper, grate some parmesan over the top, and serve.
You can always head down to the local fish and chip shop and get greasy, heavy fish and chips, but if you want a lighter, crispier option, definitely have a try at making them yourself.
Here are my top 3 tips for delicious fish and chips, Boy Chef style!
1. Boil the potatoes first and get them just soft on the outside and then bake them to get a nice fluffy centre with an amazingly crispy outside.
2. When making tartare sauce, it will always taste better if you make the mayonnaise yourself. Watching the chemical reaction between the egg yolks and the oil is worth it within itself. It goes from this runny, oily mess to thick, creamy mayo! But….. make sure you add the oil very, VERY slowly and don’t use olive oil, go for something milder like grape-seed oil.
3. Make sure the oil is plenty hot before you put the fish in. This will give it a crispy outside and it will give a nice air pocket around the fish so that its nice and light and not heavy and soggy.
And that’s it! Other than that, check out the River Cottage Australia Book for a recipe for the tastiest batter 🙂
Well this post has taken me a while, but I’m finally here to tell you how awesome cronuts are! If you don’t know what cronuts are, they are a cross between a croissant and a donut. And they will make your heart stop. Literally. I’m not kidding. These babies are NOT good for you, buuuut….. so worth it for the taste!
To demonstrate how not-good-for-you they are to the left is the butter block that you need to add to the already butter-filled dough to make the cronut dough. But look on the bright side, you only live once!
Yup, that is also butter oozing out of the resting cronuts too.
I followed the Dominique Ansel recipe which meant 3 days of hard labour, but it is the original recipe, so I didn’t want to try any of the cheat versions. Above is the nutellla raspberry cronut. This filling wasn’t included in his extensive recipe, but was pretty simple. Just warm nutella piped into the centre and then melted chocolate and crushed frozen raspberries on top.
Next was the whipped lemon filling, icing and sugar that was included in the instructions. Mum said this was the best. I preferred the next one though which is….
Apple Pecan Pie!!!!!!!!!! This one was made with a cinnamon pastry cream, stewed apples and crushed pecans. So much deliciousness!
As you can see, these are not for the faint hearted. Or the weak hearted. Or anyone with underlying health problems. But they taste sooooooo good! Plus they make you messy and make you pull weird faces in pure joy because they are just rings of crunchy, sweet, tasty, sugary, rich, buttery, layered goodness.
While exploring the depths of Harris Farm one day, I came across some delicate, little quail eggs. I had tried a few different ways of cooking them, but I think they really were at their finest paired with this sirloin steak, salad and easy balsamic dressing. They have quite a rich flavour that balances with the bite of the balsamic vinegar.
This is actually a very easy dish, with the only pressure point really being the quail eggs. You don’t need very long at all for these tiny eggs, but given that they are hard-boiled, it doesn’t really matter if you over cook them a little.
Sirloin and Quail Egg Salad
400g sirloin steak
8 quail eggs
2 large handfuls of rocket
4 radishes, thinly sliced
3-4 tbs of dukkah
4 tbs caramelised balsamic vinegar
2 tbs olive oil
salt and pepper
Put on a pot of water to boil. While that is coming to the boil, put the frypan on over high heat. Pat dry the steak and season with salt and pepper. Fry the steak to your liking (mine took about 3 minutes either side). Once the steak is cooking, place the quail eggs in the water and cook for 1 minute. Remove after one minute and place in cold water to cool and help with making the shell easier to remove. Once the steak is cooked, set aside to rest for a few minutes while you get the salad and dressing together. Toss the rocket, radish and dukkah. Divide onto two plates. In another bowl combine the caramelised balsamic vinegar and oil. Remove the shell from the eggs, the easiest way is to give it a light tap with a spoon and peel the shell under running water. Slice the eggs in half. Place on top of salad. Slice steak and place on top and then drizzle with dressing.