Tag Archives: Comfort food

This little piggy

8 Sep

Went to the market too many times! Or for cholesterol at least. Today’s post is all about Eisbein. Yes, you read it. That piece of meat and meal that most are afraid of ordering at a restaurant if they see it on a menu,because they either think people will perceive them as gluttonous or because they  just can’t see themselves finishing such a big piece of meat. 
Well let me tell you, everyone wants a bit of crackling, fatty,juicy and falling off the bone Eisbein. I make it quite often. Why, you ask? Uhm, because it tastes fantastically incredible and also, how can something that is SO cheap taste SO good?! Double win! 

It is also a dish that really requires minimum effort. You can go about your tasks and things while it’s cooking. So, what’s the catch you ask?

Well, the cleaning of that one saucepan that you boiled it in… but not to worry, your man in your life wouldn’t mind doing it for you.. or, if you have children.. start them young.. teaching them the tricks of the trade! My lion of a man still thanks me gratefully each time for his Eisbein and he’s perfectly happy to do the dishes then ūüėÉ

People, it’s time to start climbing the stairwell to heaven!  Take that napkin and tuck it into your shirt’s collar, because you are going to eat till your chin and lips glisten! 

Ingredients 

1 X Eisbein / pork shank  person ( 2 for me and the lion) 

1 X cup of white wine vinegar

1 X teaspoon of whole peppercorns

1 X big pinch of rock salt for the water

4-5 bay leaves

1 X onion, roughly quartered, you can even keep the skin on 

700ml of boiling water from the kettle or enough to cover your pork shanks

2 X small pinches of rock salt 

As I’ve mentioned, it’s really easy and no fuss. Get the biggest saucepan or casserole dish you have – as long as it is deep enough for the shanks to be covered in water, then you’re good to go. I use my biggest Le Creuset  casserole baby that I have! 

Place the shanks in the saucepan, add all the ingredients and pour the boiling water over. Bring it to boil and then turn the heat down. Allow to simmer on a low heat for at least 3 hours.

After three hours,test the meat, almost like you would a cake. You’ll easily be able to tell if it’s cooked to the texture where it is nice and tender. I usually simmer mine for 4 1/2 hours, just because the shanks are so huge! If you think they’re ready, preheat your oven to 220 degrees. 

Carefully remove the shanks from the saucepan. This needs to be done with care,otherwise the piece of fat that is on top will slide and fall off and this is one of the most delicious parts of an Eisbein. 

Place on a lined baking tray. Gently pat the fat lightly with a thick paper towel, making sure the part with the fat is facing upward. 

Take a sharp knife and carefully score the fat. You don’t want to cut it through completely,only half way.

Sprinkle a pinch of the rock salt over each shank, focussing on the section where the fat is. All you do now is place it in the oven for about 45 minutes or until crispy! 

For the weary ones, you’ll hear loud “pop” sounds, almost like microwave popcorn. Don’t worry,this is simply the fat that is crisping up. 

Since Eisbein is so rich, I just want a refreshing,green salad, but then again, my Austrian friend Ulrike and her hubby will eat it the traditional way, with sauerkraut.Ending this off, I dedicate this recipe to my friend, the Scroobys, enjoy guys! 



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Cheeky lamb pie

25 Jan

pie

Most of us have this notion that we cook a leg of lamb for Christmas¬†or Easter. NOT my man with his rumbling tummy!! He tends to come home with a¬†huge piece of meat, and then stares at me with a cheeky smile. In this case, you’ve guessed what it is! He also has a way of putting in his order at the right time too!!

Our friends Franco & Sonia moved back to London from Spain, so I cooked a Sunday roast with this leg of lamb. ( recipe on the blog) Is it strange that they don’t eat as much as we do?¬†We might eat a little too much! I won’t comment further, because we then had a fair amount of meat left. The ultimate – when you can make a pie from venison, lamb or a good cut of beef roast. My oh my!!!!

This doesn’t occur, ever! A very cheeky dish and most people will say its a waste of good meat to use lamb in a pie, but I can tell you, no wastage there!! Try it for yourself and we’ll see.

mushrooms

Ingredients

1 dish of lamb leftovers ( mine was about 2 big handfuls of lamb)

1 x teaspoon of olive oil

2 x handfuls of mushrooms, chopped

1 x onion, roughly chopped

3/4 cup of red wine

1 1/2 teaspoons corn flour

1 x pack of all butter pastry

1 x egg

3 pinches of all purpose flour

salt & pepper to taste

mushrooms

Add olive oil to the pan. Fry the chopped onions until glassy. Add the mushrooms and fry until light brown. Now add  your lamb and start mixing through. After 5 Р7 minutes, add the corn flour.

onion & mushrooms

Mix through, ensuring it coats the mushrooms and  meat. Now add the red wine. Along with the heat and the corn flour,  it will now start to thicken the red wine into a tasty gravy.

Cook this on a low heat, until thickened. Put aside and allow to cool.

diced lamb

Take a little bit of butter or non-stick cooking spray and spray a 30cm square Pyrex dish or any dish of a similar size.

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Sprinkle the flour on a kitchen top surface and swish it around a little bit to give you an area where you’ll¬†be rolling out your puff pastry. Now get your rolling pin and start rolling!!!

puff pastry

I usually place one piece of pastry in the bottom of the dish, then I dish in the pie filling. Beat the egg and get yourself a little basting brush. Brush the edges on the bottom half of the pastry. Place the other half on top and gently squeeze the edges together. If you have any pastry left, cut little forms with cookie cutters and place it on top.

rolling pin

Brush your whole pie with the egg.

beaten egg

Last step : take a sharp knife and make a tiny hole in the middle of the pie or use an adorable pie bird!

lamb pie

Bake in the oven for 30 – 45 minutes or until golden brown. The final step is to remove it from the oven and look at the hungry buggers’ faces, waiting for the very first piece of that pie and then decide who you’ll give it to first!

lamb pie

Super food for my superman!

10 Oct

We all know superman has a weakness… kryptonite! Well MY superman‚Äôs weakness is flu. Over here, it is almost impossible to avoid it! When he gets it, I get it! I really want him to stay my superman and be my hero ;-p

So he mentioned to me today that he is not feeling well and he is definitely getting the flu. Hearing the feared words.. it kicked me into overdrive!! Most of the time, he loses his appetite, so I have to think of something that is tasty, really healthy and light, because I have found that this, and of course, chicken soup, makes him feel much better!! And of course the extra pampering & love and care he is receiving ;-p  So, I sat thinking about vitamin C, good fats, protein and crunchy and fresh greens!!Don’t forget some lovely, fluffy RED rooster potatoes!!

Yup, they‚Äôll get you back on track just like a rooster wakes you up in the morning! ;-p ¬†Ahhh, salmon my old friend!! Salmon has taken a bit of a back seat for a while, because I think I overdid it a while with my pink friend… but, if there ever was a comeback… it‚Äôs now!! Maybe it is also because salmon is easy to make, a lovely, oily and healthy fish and it feels like comfort food…. yes, comfort food to me!!! So for everyone out there feeling weak, under the weather and in need of a little comfort food… let us all hope your loved one cooks this for you too!!

 

300 g fresh salmon

2 potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks

Salt & pepper according to your taste

1 tablespoon of lemon juice

2 small radishes, finely sliced

1 teaspoon of wholegrain mustard

50ml of milk / soya milk

4 twigs of chives, finely chopped

1 teaspoon of grated parmesan

2 handfuls of watercress & rocket salad mixture

 

Preheat your oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Season your salmon with salt & pepper and the lemon juice. Place in the oven. Boil some water and put some salt in it.  Now add your potatoes and boil them until soft, but still firm.

Heat the milk in a small saucepan and add your mustard. Mix through gently and add your chives. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes and add your parmesan. Flavour with black pepper. Now, dish up!!

 

Place your radish on a plate, with your salmon ( I broke mine roughly into piecies) on top of that.

Place the potato around the salmon and sprinkle over the watercress & rocket. Drizzle over the sauce and enjoy!!!