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Slow cooked pulled pork

11 Jul
INGREDIENTS
  • 2 medium yellow onions, thinly sliced
  • 4 medium garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon salt, plus more as needed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 (4-1/2- to 5-pound) boneless or bone-in pork shoulder, twine or netting removed
  • 2 cups barbecue sauce (optional)
Method
  1. Place the onions and garlic in an even layer in the casserole dish and pour in the stock or broth.
  2. Combine the sugar, chili powder, measured salt, cumin, and cinnamon in a small bowl.
  3. Pat the pork dry with paper towels.
  4. Rub the spice mixture all over the pork and place the meat on top of the onions and garlic.
  5. Bring to boil on the cooker.
  6. Cover and place in the oven at a low heat (gas mark 2).
  7. Cook until the pork is fork tender, about 2-3 hours minimum.
  8. Pour the onion mixture from the slow cooker through the strainer and return the solids to the slow cooker. Set the strained liquid aside.
  9. If the pork has a bone, remove and discard it. Using 2 forks, shred the meat into bite-sized pieces, discarding any large pieces of fat.
  10. Return the shredded meat to the slow cooker, add the barbecue sauce, if using, and mix to combine.
  11. Taste and season with salt as needed.

Serve with coleslaw and buttery corn on the cob. Yum!

Luscious Cobb Salad

28 Feb

CobbMy favourite salad by a mile. It’s so yummy that you forget you’re having a salad! I guess the crispy bacon/pancetta and the cheese makes it less healthy. Oh well… 🙂

Ingredients

Salad:

  • 3 hard-boiled eggs, peeled, chopped
  • 8 slices streaky bacon or pancetta
  • 1 head romaine lettuce, torn into bite-size pieces
  • 4 cups diced cooked chicken
  • 2 ripe avocados, peeled and diced
  • 2 ripe tomatoes, chopped
  • 4 ounces Roquefort cheese, crumbled (or any blue cheese)

Dressing:

  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup olive oil

Method

  1. Fry the bacon until crisp, drain on paper towels, and when cool enough to handle, crumble and set aside.
  2. Arrange a bed of lettuce on the serving plates. Arrange the eggs, bacon, chicken, avocados, tomatoes, and Roquefort cheese in straight rows on top of the lettuce, covering the surface completely.
  3. In a bowl, whisk together the mustard, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, salt, and pepper. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil whisking constantly to form the dressing. Drizzle the dressing evenly over the salad, and serve immediately.

Taco Potato Gratin (or whatever you may want to call it)

27 Feb

Taco dish This is a dish that developed out of my love for tacos and potato gratin. It’s a completely something out of my own brain, hence the non-existent word for it! I’ve trawled the web to find anything similar and haven’t found anything – yet! It’s so easy to make + not that calorific either (unless you count the cheese of course….)

Oh, and it’s a real ‘cheat’ dish a la Delia…

Ingredients (serves 4):

  • 500g peeled potatoes (I used Desiree variety, but any floury or all-purpose potato would do)
  • 400g mince meat
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 bags of Old El Paso ready-made Salsa (comes with a taco kit) or any other salsa
  • 1 bag of taco spice mix (Old El Paso, but any other will do)
  • Grated cheese

Method:

  1. Slice potatoes finely (use a mandolin if you have one – if not, it’s worth investing in one). Put them in an oven dish with some water and heat in the microwave for 5 minutes or until the potatoes are soft and almost cooked through.
  2. Meanwhile, fry the meat in a frying pan with some oil until all browned.
  3. Mix the tomato and one bag of the salsa with the taco mix in a bowl. Pour it in with the meat and mix it all together.
  4. Remove the cooked potatoes from the oven dish temporarily to another plate and start layering potatoes with the meat & tomato mix into the oven dish until it is almost full.
  5. Finish off with spreading the second bag of salsa over the top of the dish and cover all with a good amount of grated cheese. This can all be done in advance and re-heated in the oven for 30-40 minutes until the mixture bubbles and the cheese is nice and browned. If food is still warm, it will only need to brown up the cheese (15-20 minutes).

Let it cool for a while and serve with some crispy salad and, why not, a dollop of sour cream and guacamole on the side. It’s pretty much like having a taco – only with potatoes!

Options:

  • Add sliced aubergine in with the potatoes for a bit of Greek/Mex moussaka variety. Aubergines need to be pre-cooked, though. Nothing worse than chewy, bitter aubergines!
  • Add chilli for a bit of spice
  • Add beans to the meat mix – or replace the mince with pinto or kidney beans for a veggie option

Seafood Chowder

20 Jan

Chowder

I was never much of a fish eater when I was younger despite growing up in Sweden where “fish is king”. The north of Sweden is even famous for its Surströmming (fermented raw herring) – can you blame me for not liking fish???  I’ve realized later in life it’s because it was never cooked the right way! I can’t stand the ‘fishy’ taste and smell you get from fish that is not fresh (which is why I HATE any kind of caviar and roe). I’ve now learned how to cook fish in a way that suits me, as well as my husband, and this is one of those great recipes.

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 100g streaky bacon, chopped
  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • 600ml stock (I tend to use chicken stock)
  • 225g new potatoes, halved
  • pinch of mace (nutmeg flower) – you can use nutmeg (sparingly) if you don’t have mace
  • pinch of cayenne pepper (to taste)
  • 300ml milk
  • 320g fish pie mix (salmon, cod and smoked haddock)
  • 4 tbsp single cream
  • 250g cooked shellfish (whatever you can find)
  • small bunch of parsley
  • crusty bread to serve

Method:

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat, then add the onion and bacon. Cook for 8-10 minutes until the onion is soft and the bacon is cooked. Stir in the flour, then cook for a further 2 minutes.

Pour in the stock and bring up to a gentle simmer. Add the potatoes, cover, then simmer for 10-12 minutes until the potatoes are cooked through.

Add the mace, cayenne pepper and some seasoning. Then stir in the milk.

Tip the fish pie mix into the pan, gently simmer for 4 minutes. Add the cream and shellfish and the simmer for 1 more minute. Check seasoning.

Sprinkle with parsley and serve with some crusty bread.

Yummy! Particularly great during cold winter nights. Think I might make some later….