Chicken Parmigiana, The Real Deal

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Stuck on something to impress your family or special someone well here is the dish for you. I cooked this up for my lovely flatmates on Sunday night and it sure went down a treat, lets just say it was rather quiet when this was being consumed which is a good sign right?

Crunchy crumbed chicken breast baked with tomato passata sauce, dollops of basil paste, parmesan and layers of fresh mozzarella finished in the oven until golden brown and crispy! Served up with simple spinach and garlic penne pasta. I will admit this may be on the cards again for dinner this week as it was so satisfying and tasty.

Homemade Chicken Parmigiana with Spinach and Garlic Penne

Ingredients:
150gm Breadcrumbs
2x eggs
1/2cup Flour
2 1/2tsp Garlic Salt
2tsp Cracked black pepper
4x Chicken breast, skin removed
250ml Canola oil
500ml Tomato Passata sauce or Tomato pasta sauce
80ml Tube Basil Puree or 4 tbsp fresh basil chopped
1/2cup Parmesan, finely grated
250gm Mozzarella
1tbsp Fresh parsley, roughly chopped
Spinach and Garlic Penne
50gm Baby spinach
500gm Penne Pasta
1tsp Garlic salt
1tsp Cracked black pepper

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degress.
  2. Crack eggs into a bowl and whisk together, set aside.
  3. Place flour in another bowl and add 1tsp garlic salt and 1tsp cracked black pepper, mix until seasoning is evenly mixed through.
  4. repeat same process with the bread crumbs and remaining garlic salt and cracked pepper.
  5. Firstly coat the chicken breast in flour, then into the egg mixture and finally into the seasoned bread crumbs. Set aside and repeat until all breasts are crumbed.
  6.  Heat oil in a heat based wok or fry pan over a low to medium heat until it reaches 170-180 degrees. This will take around 5 minutes or so, Be very careful at this point.
  7. Add 2x Chicken breasts to the hot oil and fry either side for 2-3 minutes until golden brown, place in oven proof dish.
  8. Pour a strip of tomato passata sauce over the crumbed chicken followed by half a tube of the basil puree or 2 tbsp fresh chopped basil. Pour the remaining sauce around the sides of the dish.
  9. Sprinkle 3/4 of the parmesan over and cut mozzarella into 12 pieces, lay 3 pieces over each chicken breast.
  10. Spoon a small dollop of tomato sauce over the top of the chicken and a teaspoon of basil puree and the remainder of the parmesan.
  11. Sprinkle with cracked pepper and bake for 40 minutes until golden brown.
  12. Boil penne in heavily salted water with 2 tbsp oil until cooked.
  13. Drain and add 1 tbsp oil to prevent it from sticking together  add spinach, 1 tsp cracked black pepper and a teaspoon of garlic salt. Mix together.
  14. Remove your chicken from the oven, sprinkle with roughly chopped parsley and serve over your spinach and garlic penne.

ENJOY!

Sweet Tooth Fix, Two ingredients say no more

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Do you ever want to just make something sweet with minimal effort and minimal ingredients?
Well I sure have the recipe for you, two ingredients and 5 minutes of your time and its ready to hit the fridge.
Today’s creation is soft and creamy fudge that only requires two ingredients, YES you heard me TWO INGREDIENTS!!
No pots or pans are required for this recipe either. Simply a microwave safe bowl or jug and a rubber scraper.  This fudge is soft and melts in your mouth I have already eaten 5 pieces writing out the recipe, be sure this wont last long in your house.

Two Ingredient  Fudge

Who doesn’t like fudge? I think nearly everyone does even more so that it only takes 5 minutes and two ingredients. I wanted something that wasn’t going to take much effort or time to be completely honest with you all. Who doesn’t want that right? So I have created a very simply recipe for 2 ingredient 5 minute fudge. You can make any flavour you like I turned a simple milk chocolate fudge into a cookies and cream dream and a Cadbury Caramilk flavour. Flavour possibilities are endless and up to you.

Ingredients:
600gm Chocolate (I used Whittaker’s Milk Choc and Cadburys Caramilk)
1 1/2 can 395gm Condense Milk

Method:

  1. Brake chocolate into small pieces, place in microwave safe bowl.
  2. Pour in condense milk.
  3. Place in microwave and change power setting to 50% microwave for 1 minute, then stir.
  4. Repeat this step 5x to equal 5 minutes, after 3 minutes your mixture will start to thicken, don’t panic just stir it evenly with a rubber scraper insuring that you get around the sides and base of the bowl.
  5. Once you have completed this pour into silicone cake mould or baking dish lined with baking paper.
  6. Cover with a piece of baking paper and using your hands spread the fudge evenly over the dish, remove baking paper before placing in the fridge.
  7. Add desired toppings I’ve done cookies and cream and also a plain one in the pictures below.
  8. Place in the fridge for 3 -4 hours or overnight. (for best results overnight is best)
  9. Cut into 2.5cm cubes.

Flavour additions:

Cookies and Cream Fudge:
8x Oreos
12 cookies and cream Herseys kisses
Once you have poured your fudge into your dish and smoothed the top, sprinkle with crushed cookies and Herseys kisses. Place baking paper over the top and press topping in so when the fudge sets its in your fudge rather than falling off.

Tender Venison Necks

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Everyone who knows me knows I absolutely love a good bargain! One of my favorite things to do is get the reduced to clear meat goes very cheap and usually still has 2 days good before it must be frozen. However these were not reduced to clear they were full price $3.86 for 5 venison necks, $5.99kg now that is awesome isn’t it?

Venison is one of my favorite meats its super high in iron and very lean! Today I was in a relaxed mood as it was my day off so i decided to put the slow cooker on. I love the thing I must say switch it on in the morning by dinner time all you have to do is thicken and make some mash. Love a simple dinner and here is a beauty one im sharing with you all!

Venison necks are a nice cheap cut of meat and they have a surprising amount of meat on them to so its a great value for money meat. You can find them at most supermarkets i picked these up from pak n save however i used to get them at countdown and sometimes new world as well. The ones here are from Canterbury from a farm called the Merchant of Venison.  If your lucky enough to have wild venison or know a hunter who could get you some give it a go with that it has a more gamer flavour and is also delicious.

Slow Braised Venison Necks with Cranberry and Pumpkin
on
Swede and Agria Mash

Ingredients

5-6 venison necks
1 tsp paprika
1 onion, fine dice
1 stalk celery, medium dice
2 cloves garlic, fine dice
2 carrots
1/2 small crown pumpkin, peeled and 3-4cm dice
1 tin diced tomatoes
400ml water
1 bay leaf
1 tbsp fresh rosemary
1/4 cup cranberries
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper
2 tbsp cornflour + water for slurry
Swede and Agria Mash
1/4 swede, peeled and small 2cm dice
3 medium agria potatoes, peeled and 4cm dice
1 spring onion, finely sliced
50gm butter
1/8 cup milk
salt and pepper

Method:

  1. Turn slow cooker onto low.
  2. Season venison generously with salt, pepper and the paprika on both sides.
  3. Heat medium fry pan over a medium to high heat, add 1 tbsp oil followed by onion, celery and garlic. Saute until opaque add to slow cooker.
  4. Brown venison necks both sides add to the slow cooker with the remaining ingredients, apart from the cornflour.
  5. Cook on low for 6 hours, combine cornflour and small amount of water to make a slurry stir into venison and cook for further 10 minutes.
  6. Bring swede and potato to the boil and cook until tender. ( it is important to cut the swede smaller as it takes longer to cook than potato.)
  7. Drain, mash and stir in butter, milk, spring onion, salt and pepper. Stir well.
  8. Serve venison necks on bed of swede and agria mash with sprinkle of crumbled feta and chopped celery leaves.

Serves: 2-4

Feijoas yes please!

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I love feijoa’s hence this is my second post on feijoa’s today ! Make the most of them while they are nice and cheap and are available. If you get a your hands on to many you can always peel and freeze for when you have a feijoa craving!

This is one of easiest cake recipe out! You put all the ingredients in the food processor so no mixing or hand beating requires! It a moist upside down feijoa and lime yoghurt cake, it goes down a treat warm with a cup of tea. Would be perfect served warm with ice-cream for a different dessert but is just as good cold!

Upside Down Feijoa and Lime Yoghurt Cake

 

Ingredients:
5 feijoa’s, peeled and slice thick rings
2 limes, zest and juice
1 lemon, zest and juice
1 cup canola oil
1 cup yoghurt
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda

Method:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 170 degrees.
  2. Combine all ingredients in food possessor apart from the feijoa’s!
  3. Puree until combined scrap down sides and blitz once more.
  4. Line a loaf tin with baking paper and arrange the feijoa slices along the bottom making sure there are no gaps.
  5. Pour over cake batter and bake for 40-50 minutes until golden brown and a knife comes out clean when tested.
  6. Remove from oven and allow to cool in tin for 5 minutes until turning onto serving plate.

Serve warm or cold.

*this can be made in either a loaf tin or cake tin but it is important that you line it or it wont turn our of the tin.

 

Homemade Cinnamon Coconut Crunch Muesli

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Here’s a great base recipe for homemade muesli what i mean by base recipe is you could add any chopped dried fruit you wanted I just didn’t have any in my cupboard at the time. Some of my favorites are apricots, cranberries, sultanas and blueberries.

You can use this muesli for much more than just breakfast! It can be the crunch layer in a layered yoghurt dessert added to raw muffin mix for a crumble topping and many more!

This is my new go to muesli recipe! Im sitting here at 2 in the afternoon with a big bowl and it is so tastey and crunchy, with a combination of sunflower and pumpkin seeds, shredded coconut, finished with cinnamon and maple syrup.

Homemade Cinnamon Coconut Crunch Muesli

Ingredients:

  • 2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 2 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 8 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup white sesame seeds
  • 2 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 brown sugar
  • 250 gm butter, melted

Method:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 160 degrees.
  2. In large bowl combine all ingredients, mix well, pour into a lined baking tray and bake for 45-50 minutes or until golden brown not to dark as it will taste burnt.
  3. You want to stir it every 5-10 minutes to evenly bake the museli.
  4. Remove from oven , cool and store in an air-tight container.

Makes: 10-15 serves muesli

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Sunday Comfort

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With snow on the forecast and and the fire going I thought nothing better than a roast, however this time I wanted to change it up a little and try a pot roast pork.
One of the local supermarkets was selling pork shoulder for a bargain $6.99 a kg how could I not partake in that bargain!!

The Italian Herb Blend by Equagold was a perfect rub for this pork shoulder! Notes of fennel and oregano went perfectly with pork and lemon brussel sprouts, it added a good sharp tasty note to this comforting dish.

Italian Rubbed Pot Roast Pork Shoulder with braised agria potatoes,red onion and a side of garlic lemon brussel sprouts

Ingredients:

Pot Roast Pork
1-1.5kg pork shoulder
3 tbsp Equagold Italian Blend
3 tbsp oil
1 tsp flaky sea salt
1/2 tsp ground cracked pepper
2 large agria potatoes, washed
1 1/2 red onion, cut into large wedges
2 garlic cloves, rough chop
2 cups vegetable stock

Garlic Lemon Brussel Sprouts
8 brussel sprouts, cut into quarters
1/8 cup water
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp butter
1/2 lemon zest and juice
1 tbsp chopped parsley
salt and pepper to taste

Method:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degress.
  2. In small bowl combine oil, salt, pepper and Italian herb seasoning, stir to combine, pour over the pork shoulder and massage in. (you could marinate overnight if you had time for extra flavour)
  3. Heat medium size fry pan, add 1 tsp oil and red onion, season and add to the bottom of casserole dish that has  a lid or you can use tin foil.
  4. Cut Agria Potatoes into Large wedges with skin on, brown slightly and add to casserole dish.
  5. Brown pork roast both sides around 3 minutes, sear in all the flavour and juices, add to the potatoes with chopped garlic and vegetable stock.
  6. Place on the lid or tin foil and bake for 2 hours.
  7. Remove pork from oven, take the fat of and shred the pork, spoon over juices from the casserole dish about 1/2 cup. (keep some juices to spoon over your finished dish.)
  8. Heat medium frypan over medium to high heat, add 1 tsp oil and brussel sprouts , brown slightly and add water. Simmer for 2 minutes, add butter,lemon zest, juice, salt and pepper. Finish with parsley.
  9. Place potatoes on your plate followed by onions, brussel sprouts and topped with the star Italian shredded pot roast pork, spoon over some casserole juices and serve!

Serves:1-4 ( 1 potato per person)

Cut onion into large wedges.

Cut onion into large wedges.

Combine oil, salt, pepper and Equagold's Italian Blend Seasoning.

Combine oil, salt, pepper and Equagold’s Italian Blend Seasoning.

Rub over pork and massage in for a minute.

Rub over pork and massage in for a minute.

Cut potatoes into large wedges. Leaving the skin on holds them together during the braise.

Cut potatoes into large wedges. Leaving the skin on holds them together during the braise.

Brown onion followed by potatoes.

Brown onion followed by potatoes.

Brown pork both sides add to casserole dish. Deglaze frypan with vegetable stock and add to casserole dish, place on lid and cook for 2 hours.

Brown pork both sides add to casserole dish. Deglaze frypan with vegetable stock and add to casserole dish, place on lid and cook for 2 hours.

Shred pork shoulder.

Shred pork shoulder.

Cut brussel sprouts into quarters.

Cut brussel sprouts into quarters.

Heat medium fry pan over medium to high heat, add 1 tso oil lightly brown sprouts, add water and simmer for 2-3 minutes.

Heat medium fry pan over medium to high heat, add 1 tso oil lightly brown sprouts, add water and simmer for 2-3 minutes.

Add salt, pepper, garlic, lemon zest, juice and butter.

Add salt, pepper, garlic, lemon zest, juice and butter.

Serve potatoes topped with onions, brussel sprouts then the star shredded pot roast pork, spoon over casserole juices and serve.

Serve potatoes topped with onions, brussel sprouts then the star shredded pot roast pork, spoon over casserole juices and serve.

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Bubble and Squeak Quiche Bites

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My partner has just started studying and I wanted to make some wee snacks for him to take. We had a roast yesterday and there is heaps of roast vegetables and steamed cabbage left over. Cabbage and roast veges ,that’s a perfect combo for bubble and squeak then I thought why not make individual quiche bites. So here is the end result , I hope you enjoy! you can make the filling what ever you like.

Bubble and Squeak Quiche Bites

Ingredients:

1 cup left over roast root vegetables, small dice (I used swede, potato, pumpkin)

1 cup steamed sliced cabbage

6 eggs, beaten

200gm shaved ham, rough chop

1 clove garlic, finely diced

Pinch salt and pepper

1/4c grated cheese

6x muffin cases

Method:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees.
  2. Line 6 hole texas muffin tin with muffin cases.
  3. In large bowl combine all ingredients apart from the cheese, stir well to combine.
  4. Fill each muffin case with about 1/4 cup mixture, any left over divide evenly between the cases.
  5. Top with cheese and bake for 16-17 minutes until puffed and golden brown. Do not over cook as they will go soggy.

Makes : 6 medium individual quiches

Rustic Autumn Chicken Cassoulet

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Verging the end of the working week I found myself with a Friday off which is very rare working in hospitality. As the leaves are now beautiful oranges and reds and begin to fall I thought why not make a rustic autumn dish that is perfect for the winter months too.

This one is pretty easy brown everything off add to casserole dish with lid, whack it into the oven for hour and 20 minutes and she’s ready to be eaten. Served mine up with some rustic Southland swede and potato mash. Must say the partner loved it and i even added olives to the top for him. If you don’t like olives or the kids don’t you can leave them, out.

Rich tomato base with bursts of coriander, succulent chicken that falls apart, naturally sweet carrot and earthy notes from the mushrooms and chickpeas.

Rustic Autumn Chicken Cassoulet

Ingredients:

6 chicken drumsticks

1 red onion, sliced
3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tbsp canola oil
1 carrot, peeled and sliced into ovals *see the picture
1 cup mushrooms, chunky chop
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup red wine* can be substituted with stock
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 bay leaf
2 tbsp fresh coriander, rough chop
8-10 black olives, pitted
salt and pepper

Fresh coriander to serve

Method:
1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees.
2. heat a heavy based frypan, add oil and brown onions, carrot and garlic add to the bottom of the cassoulet or baking dish. Sprinkle half the chickpeas.
3. Season chicken with salt and pepper, brown in the same fry pan, add to the top of the vegetables and chickpeas.
4. Pour red wine,tomatoes, brown sugar, bay leaf and coriander into the fry pan and deglaze, add to the top of the chicken with remaining chickpeas and mushrooms.
5. Place the lid on and bake for 1 hour remove the lid top with olives and bake for further 20 minutes.
6. Serve on mash or rice with a side of your favorite green vegetables.

Serves: 3-6

If you don’t have a casserole dish with a lid a deep oven dish with tin foils works just as good!

Slice Carrots on an angle to achieve the oval shape.

Slice Carrots on an angle to achieve the oval shape.

Brown onion, carrot and garlic, tip into bottom of the casserole dish.

Brown onion, carrot and garlic, tip into bottom of the casserole dish.

Top with browned chicken.

Top with browned chicken.

Add red wine, tomatoes, brown sugar, coriander and bayleaf to your frypan and deglaze.

Add red wine, tomatoes, brown sugar, coriander and bayleaf to your frypan and deglaze.

Top browned chicken with remaining chickpeas and mushrooms.

Top browned chicken with remaining chickpeas and mushrooms.

Top with the reduced tomatoes and wine. Cover and bake for 1 hour with lid on.

Top with the reduced tomatoes and wine. Cover and bake for 1 hour with lid on.

Remove lid top with olives and bake for a further 20 minutes.

Remove lid top with olives and bake for a further 20 minutes.

Remove from oven top with fresh coriander and enjoy.

Remove from oven top with fresh coriander and enjoy.

Serve on generous mound of mashed Southland swede and potato.

Serve on generous mound of mashed Southland swede and potato.

Summer Stunner

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SUMMER STUNNER

Spice roasted broccoli and lentil salad.

This salad sure does pack a punch, lightly spiced broccoli with creamy avocado and bursts of coriander. Full of all things fresh, healthy and seasonal!

This may be on the table this Christmas it sure was delicious!

 

Ingredients:

¾ head broccoli, florets cut in half

3 tsp rice bran oil

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp cumin

¼ tsp cinnamon

Pinch chilli powder

Pinch cayenne pepper

½ zest of lemon

2 garlic cloves, finely grated

Salt and pepper

 

1 avocado, thick slices

1 can lentils, rinsed and drained

¼ cup coriander, roughly chopped

3 tbsp sultanas

3 tbsp sunflower seeds

½ lemon, juiced

Salt and pepper to taste

 

Method:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees.
  2. Combine all spices, lemon zest, garlic and salt and pepper together. Pour over broccoli and bake for 20 minutes.
  3. In large bowl add lentils, sultanas, coriander, sunflower seeds toss together.
  4. Once broccoli is cooked add to bowl followed by avocado, lemon juice and salt and pepper, toss gently.
  5. Serve on its own or goes perfectly with bbq or cooked meats.

 Serves: 4-6