Tag Archives: Teaspoon

Mashed like a fishcake

5 Aug

…..is what I feel like today. Yesterday’s blog didn’t happen – I blame it on the buses that never arrived, which caused me to walk home. I also have to add that I was wearing tights, a VERY short dress and shoes that I won’t say won the award for most comfortable walk. As I took my long and lonely walk home, I became irritated. I just want to get off the train, get on the bus and get home. Imagine my facial expression when someone whistled at me! In that split second that it took to think about the face I was going to make and what I was going to say, I saw an extremely dashing and handsome young man across the street.

It was fate, we met across the street from each other, each one on the corner ;-p  What I wouldn’t do to get his phone number! As it turns out, I have it already! Along with this happiness, I saw a mischievous GLARE coming from the hubby’s face! He knew if it was anyone else whistling at me I would blow my top. This little surprise naturally improved my mood. How blessed I am to be so in love with my very handsome husband. “What a dashing young lad”, as my neighbour Ave (who has a huge crush on the hubby by the way) would often say.

Needless to say, I rustled up a very quick pasta, sorry guys, I will make it again and take photos and post. So last night I was “woman down”.  In better terms, exhausted. The life was sucked out of me and I still feel like this today. And so enters….. the mashed up fish cake! My mood, my brain and my body! So which better route to take than to eat some fish and hopefully you will have the speed and strength of a tuna to carry on ;-p

Of course, there are easier and quicker ways to enjoy a fish cake, but alas, the hubby wont even touch it. Home-made, however is a completely different story. Also, if you think how difficult it is to catch tuna, I suppose it shouldn’t be too easy to prepare and eat it:  “It’s hard to catch one, but it’s my favourite kind of fishing,” says Robby Coad of Edgartown, a commercial fisherman and charter captain. Tuna have incredible vision, Robby explains, and they’re fast. “They can swim over fifty miles an hour, so it’s easy to lose them, especially when they’re on the line and scared. It’s hard to do and you don’t get them every time you go.”

I also think it will give a different take on tinned tuna, using them for fishcakes. It tastes great, fresh, and healthy and it is affordable. How often does one enjoy fresh, home made fishcakes? As often as one finds fresh tuna in the shops and that is never! ;-p So, as they say, there is always a first. Let’s hope I don’t make it the last! I’m going to do a slightly different take on the tuna fishcakes than one normally would. I am going to use butter beans as a base. You can use mashed potato as well, but I think butter beans might add a lovely flavour. To make this easier, create a little station at your preparation area in a row. Start your row with a bowl of flour, then a bowl with 2 eggs, beaten and lastly, a bowl with breadcrumbs. From there you can just put your fishcakes in the frying pan.

Salsa style tuna fish cakes

½ can of butter beans, drained

1 1/2 tablespoons of mayonnaise

½ red onion, roughly chopped

handful of coriander, roughly chopped

1 teaspoon of cumin

1 teaspoon of olive oil

1 can of tuna (chunks)

Half a chilli, roughly chopped and deseeded

Clove of garlic

2 eggs, beaten

Breadcrumbs for dipping

Flour for dipping

Salt & pepper to taste

Sunflower oil for frying

Corn

2 sweetcorn cobs

1 tablespoon of butter

Asparagus 

bunch of asparagus

1 teaspoon of garlic

1 teaspoon of butter

1 teaspoon of lemon juice

1 tablespoon of dry white wine

Salsa

handful of roasted cherry tomatoes

1/2 red onion, finely chopped

1 teaspoon of capers

Handful of coriander, roughly chopped

1 tablespoon of red wine/malt vinegar

4 slices of cucumber, finely chopped

Take your butter beans, tuna, chilli,onion, cumin, olive oil,coriander, mayonnaise and garlic and mix until fine, but not complete mush, in a processor. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Make little “patties” with your hands and put them through your prepared station. Coat both sides with flour. Dip in the egg and now dip in the breadcrumbs. Do the same with the res of the mixture and place in the fridge.

Boil water and cook your corn for 8-10 minutes.While this is cooking, start with your asparagus.Melt your butter in a pan, add the garlic and fry cook your asparagus. Add your white wine and lemon juice. Flavour with salt and pepper. Take your cooked corn, drain, cut them from the cob, mix through with butter and season to taste.

For the salsa, mix everything together, season with salt and pepper and allow to stand. Now, heat a frying pan and add your sunflower oil. Fry each side of your tuna cakes till they are golden brown and place in a bowl with a paper towl.

Now dish up onto a plate and top with your salsa. Serve with sweetcorn and cous cous, or simply on it’s own 🙂

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lazy lemon meatballs

5 Apr

The word “lazy” enters the vocabulary when I whip out my little Kenwood chopper!! This little beauty was another wonderful gift from the hubby!! Yes, I am spoilt rotten!! Add to this little gadget saving me time = quick happy hubby! Which might I add, allows me to finish my blog post quicker, as he feels this comes 1st instead of him ;-p So, in my haste I also accidentally deleted a few photos that I took.

Maybe this is a underlying problem from me wanting to clear all the clutter and extras away, as yet again, my day was filled with walking down the street with boxes again!! Also, I only had mince. Now there comes a time when meatballs with homemade tomato becomes more boring than all the women with their prams here in London ;-p So I had to think of something different and lighter.

A while ago, before I started my blog, I made mini meatballs with cumin, and found that this was a different alternative, however, still served it with tomato sauce and basil. This is a different take on meatballs, tasty, light and warm for the tummy and soul 🙂 No summer here yet!! So here we go:

Meatball mixture

250g mince

half onion, finely chopped in your processor

1 teaspoon of paprika

1 teaspoon of dried coriander

1 teaspoon of turmeric

1 teaspoon of cumin

pinch of salt

4 cream crackers, made fine in your processor so they are fine crumbs

1 egg, beaten

Sauce

half a onion, finely chopped in your chopper

1 teaspoon of garlic

1 tablespoon of butter

3 tablespoons of lemon juice

1 teaspoon of paprika

1 teaspoon of turmeric

250ml of Chicken stock

1 teaspoon of cumin

Ok, so lets start with the meatballs. Place your mince in a bowl, add your spices, cream crackers and egg and lemon juice. Mix thorougly and make mini meatballs. Simples!! Now add your butter and garlic to the pan and the onion and all the spices for the sauce. Fry the onion for 5 minutes. Now add your meatballs. Let them fry and squiggle them around in the pan. Do not allow them to burn, but only brown them. Now add your chicken stock. Cook for about 15 – 20 minutes or untill cooked through.

I have served this with cous cous and finely chopped red pepper, courgette and harissa paste. I took 1 courgette and 1/2 a red pepper and chopped it in my chopper. Fine, but not too fine so that it turns into a paste. I drizzled the pan with a little bit of olive oil. Then take 1 teaspoon of  harissa paste and mix through in the pan. Now add your finely chopped courgette and red pepper. Fry for about 5 – 10 minutes. Now add a cup of cous cous. Mix it through so that it absorbs all the flavours. Flavour lightly with salt and vegetable spice. Now add a little bit of water, just enough for the cous cous to absorb it. Mix through so that the cous cous seperates. Now cover with a lid and allow to stand. The cous cous with now be done. Serve up with your meatballs and enjoy!

Red fiery chicken for a fiery lady…

10 Mar Red fiery chicken

You heard it!! Today, after we paid a reservation fee to put in an offer for the beautiful house we have our eye on, the landlord said it was too low. How greedy are these people? What if I deliver them some home made chocolate brownies? (Nadia daydreaming about delivering brownies and instantly recieving the keys to the house after the agents enjoyed a brownie!) Nope, no bribing here 😦

Then, after I recieved the bad news, add to this my “exciting” job for the day – phoning registars to confirm a client’s share certificates… all 22 of them, I started to conjure a little “fiery” recipe in my head for tonight’s dinner. Not to mention I still had to bake the cheesecake!

By the way.. while I am busy typing today’s blog, the cheesecake is baking in the oven, with the hubby laughing in the background for the “Mr T” add on tv! Yup, he loves that ad. Perfect housewife much? Wink wink!! So, this dish is a different take on butter chicken. It has a very mild flavour, with a little bite from the chilli – similar to my mood today ;-p However, it is the first time I thought of this and my man was the guinea pig! So if you make this dish, decide for yourself  🙂

7 Drumsticks

1 Leek, chopped

1 cup of ground almonds

1 chilli finely chopped

Basil oil / olive oil

2 bunches of fresh Coriander chopped

2 anchovies

1 tin of chopped tomatoes

1 tablespoon of tomato paste

2 teaspoons of garlic

1 teaspoon of cumin

1 handful of feta

1 tablespoon of cream / soya cream

Salt & black pepper

Served with rice and Zucchini ribbons

2 Zucchinis

1 teaspoon of butter

balsamic glaze

Heat a casserole dish and drizzle with your olive/basil oil. Add the garlic and chilli and fry for 2 minutes. Add your leeks and fry for 5 minutes. Now add your tomato paste,cumin and anchovies. Mix through and add your chicken and allow the chicken to brown slightly, but be careful for your garlic not to burn.  Add your ground almond and mix through. Now add your tin of tomatoes. Before throwing away your tin, half fill your can with water, mix around in the can so it catches the few juices still left in it and add to your casserole. Add half of your chopped coriander and mix through. Let it simmer for 40 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and add your cream and crumble in the feta. Remove from heat.

Now, as a topping, grate your zucchini. Take one teaspoon of butter and place in small frying pan and let it melt. Add your zucchini and fry for about 5 minutes. Slightly drizzle with balsamic glaze and mix through. Season with salt.

You can make jasmine rice to go with your dish ( I still do the cheat of the packet rice since I am not allowed to eat rice) Lazy!! I know. So, dishing up, use the rice as your base, place the chicken and sauce on top, sprinkle with some chopped coriander and top with your zucchini ribbons. Enjoy!!

Creamy mustard chicken with a silver lining of a white picket fence… ;-p

9 Mar Creamy mustard chicken

Today was a DULL day. First day back at work, so I had to pace myself. Still browsing the internet trying to find a place to stay and that is why I had to make something quick and tasty to fill a hungry man’s tummy! Like all men, my hubby gets grumpy when he is hungry, feed him, and he is like a little lion cub!! So after a long, dragging day, we had to go and view a property. Even before this happened, I was informed by the hubby that I have to make him his favourite treat  – Chocolate peanutbutter cheesecake. The reason? His birthday was celebrated in South Africa, so his colleagues missed out on a sweet treat. This brings me to the point that I had to go past the shop to go and buy a few ingredients for this cheesecake that I have to make tomorrow night. This is another silver lining to look forward to for tomorrow’s post!

So, we went to view a property and it is my dream little home ( fingers crossed!) I did realise that it doesn’t matter how I flutter my eyelids or how sparkly my smile is, if they don’t accept the offer, we don’t get the house 😦  So everyone, hold thumbs please!!! This is very boring, but I had to share, so back to tonight’s dish. This is a creamy mustard chicken with a slight bite and gnocchi. Gnocchi is always a favourite and a lifesaver because you can easily keep it in your fridge anything from 2 – 8 weeks. The hubby calls it “fluffy ball things”. Gotta smile at that one!

So here we go with the ingredients:

1 pack of chicken thigh fillets, cut into chunks

handful of button mushrooms, cut into slices

1 onion roughly chopped

4 teaspoons of wholegrain mustard

olive oil

2 teaspoons of crushed garlic

2 teaspoons of harissa paste

2 teaspoons of lemon juice

30 ml of dry white wine

250ml cream / soya cream

handful of grated parmesan

handful of chopped fresh chives

salt & black pepper

1 pack of gnocchi

1 teaspoon of butter

Drizzle olive oil in a heated pan. Add your garlic and onions. Fry your onions until glassy and add your harissa paste and mix through. Now add your mushrooms. Fry the mushrooms until they brown slightly. Now add the mustard. Mix through and add the chicken. Fry for about 5-10 minutes. Season with salt. Add your lemon juice, mix through and now add your white wine. Cook for another 5 minutes and add your cream and 3/4 of your chopped chives. Simmer until your chicken is cooked through. Now add your grated parmesan and mix through.

Meanwhile, boil water in a kettle for your gnocchi. Pour into your saucepan and when the water is boiling, add your gnocchi. They take about 5 minutes. When they float to the surface, they are ready and you can remove them. Place in a bowl and add 1 teaspoon of butter and the remaining chives. Mix through and season with salt. By now your chicken should be done. Dish up some gnocchi and top with your creamy mustard chicken. Serve with a simple salad.

Pancake day..drizzled with a little bit of sun!

8 Mar Pancake day

We have returned. All things bright and beautiful and relaxation is a thing of the past again. We had a lovely holiday, and I really, and I mean reallllllly miss my mom! So, after sitting on the computer pretty much for the whole day trying to find a place for us to stay, everyone has been running around obsessed with pancakes! So, I phoned up the hubby and it turns out it is pancake day here in the UK. Who has a freakin pancake day? THEM, because they can’t have a SUN day! hahaha!

Ok, that was a rude joke, we have been very lucky to have two, very COLD sunny days since we have returned. So, obviously we had to have pancakes too!  I have to dedicate this to my beautiful, ever patient mom, as I have never really been able to make a good pancake, until I asked her and she told me to  remember the rule of one – one of each. She always has a way of making everything easy and simple, even though it might be more complicated than it sounds or looks. So mommy, I know you still make a better pancake, but I try, because I learnt from the best! So here is my MOM’s pancake recipe -It is the best-fluffy and simply beautiful!  You will understand what I mean with the rule of 1.

Pancakes

1 cup of flour

1 cup of sparkling water

1 egg

pinch of salt

1 teaspoon of baking powder

Sieve the salt, baking powder and flour together. Beat the egg and sodawater together. Add the egg and sodawater mixture to the flour and beat until smooth. Walla!! Now heat a non-stick pan with a little bit of sunflower oil and pour in a soup ladle full into the pan. When it starts making little air bubbles, flip it over.

Now, for the filling:

3 pork shoulder steaks, cut in strips

handful of chives, chopped

1 red chilli, finely chopped

1/2 teaspoon of ginger, grated

2 teaspoons of crushed garlic

salt & black pepper

2 tablespoons of olive oil

2 tablespoons of sweet chilli sauce

1 teaspoon of soya sauce

1 granny smith apple, grated

2 teaspoons of honey

Use a mortar & pestle. First, add your olive oil and garlic. Now grate in your ginger. Add the teaspoon of soya sauce and the honey. Mix in the chopped chilli and chives. Grate the apple and mix in with the rest of the mixture. Season with salt and pepper. Toss the meat with this marinade. Heat a non-stick pan and add the meat with the marinade to the pan. While the pork starts cooking, add the sweet chilli sauce to the meat. Cook for about 8 – 10 minutes or until cooked through. Take a pancake, fill it with your pork and enjoy! Serve up with a simple salad.

drop in temperature calls for a little bit of indulging

26 Jan

So after a very busy day, another hold up on the train.. taking almost two hours to get to work again, the day started out in a similar way as it ended.. exhausting. After finally getting home, freezing and tired, I had a look in the fridge. One pack of chicken and one courgette. So I thought of  Tarragon Chicken. Most people don’t use tarragon, but I discovered it again after coming over to London. It has a strong, but distinct taste. So,this dish is dedicated to my hubby! If you want to give him heaven.. give him good food.. it makes him really happy 🙂 He loves cream, but unfortunately he is lactose intolerant, so I use soya cream. I have made this dish once, and my hubby fell in love with it – and oh how critical he is when it comes to food and cooking. So, I am sure if he loves it, you most definitely will! If you aren’t lactose intolerant.. do use cream!! The real thing is always better!! So this is fairly quick and you make it in one pan… less dishes = happiness!

Tarragon chicken with white wine & cream

1 pack of chicken, thighs or drumsticks or mixed

1 onion, finely chopped

2 teaspoons of olive oil

2 teaspoons of garlic

3 teaspoons of tarragon

1 wine glass of dry white wine

salt & pepper for seasoning

1 large courgette, chopped in triangles

250 ml cream/soya cream

Heat a deep non-stick pan with one teaspoon of olive oil and one teaspoon of garlic and two teaspoons of tarragon.Fry the onion with the courgette until glassy, but still firm. Season slightly with salt. Remove from the pan.

Now add the remaining garlic,olive oil and tarragon and add the chicken to the pan to brown. Add the white wine and the onion & courgette mix. Simmer for 10 minutes. Add the cream and simmer, with lid on for 30 minutes. Remove lid and simmer for 10 minutes. This dish has a very mild, but tasty flavour. Serve with fluffy jasmine/ basmati rice or linguine. Whatever your taste buds desire!!