Beef Stew with Rice

Beef Stew & Rice

Don’t you just love throwing meat and veggies in a pot, let it cook for hours and have meals lined up for a week? Definitely my kind of cooking. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we did.

Ingredients

1 kg stewing beef, cubed
250 g bacon, cubed
2 sticks celery, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 onion, sliced into wedges
4 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
8 – 10 medium potatoes, halved or quartered
400 g brown Swiss mushrooms, halved or whole depending on the size
5 sticks rosemary
5 sticks of thyme
1/3 cup tomato paste
700 ml beef stock or just enough to cover the meat
1/2 cup red wine
2 tbsp flour
Salt and pepper to taste, season as you go through the process

Method

Heat a big pot and fry the bacon until it is cooked but not crispy. Remove bacon but keep the oil in the pot. Add the beef and fry for a few minutes until browned on all sides, add the flour, stir and allow to cook another minute or 2. Remove beef from the pot.

Now its time to start with your veggies. Add a bit more oil to the pot and fry the chopped onion, garlic and celery for about 5 minutes or until soft. Now add the carrots and wedged onions and fry for another few minutes. Next add your beef and bacon, fry for 2 minutes and add the red wine. Allow the red wine to reduce to about half and then add your tomato paste, beef stock, potatoes, mushrooms and herbs. Mix everything together and allow to cook on low heat for 3 hours minimum.

Serve with your choice of rice and enjoy.

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Paprika and Lemon Salmon with Saffron Wild Rice

Paprika and Lemon Salmon with Saffron Wild Rice

We have added a lot of fish onto our diet lately. I used to really really struggle to eat salmon but after a few months of experimenting with flavour combinations I have found a few recipes that can convert just about anyone to love the big old pink fish. This is delicious and very easy to make. Enjoy

Ingredients

2 x 180g salmon fillets
50g butter, melted
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives an flat leave parsley
juice and zest of 1 lemon
2 garlic cloves, crushed
wild rice
1 good pinch of saffron
1 tbsp butter
1/2 cup of frozen peas

Method

Pre heat the oven to 180 degrees Celcius. Prepare two pieces of foil, each big enough to completely be folded over the salmon with some space for the steaming action. Place the salmon on the foil and season with salt. Let that sit while you prepare the rest.

Mix together the 50g butter, paprika, lemon juice and zest, garlic, chives and parsley and divide evenly over the two pieces of salmon. Close the foil at the top and cook in the oven for 20 minutes. After the 20 minutes remove from the oven, turn to grill, open the foil carefully And allow fish grill 4 minutes, do not burn.

While the fish is cooking, heat water for the rice and cook as per packet instructions. If the rice comes with a seasoning pack use that along with the saffron, if not add the butter and saffron. You could also use chicken stock instead of just plain water if the rice does not have a seasoning pack. I use the Uncle Bens wild rice with seasoning and it works perfectly with this salmon recipe. Once the rice is cooked and water is absorbed add the peas and allow to sit in the rice for 5 minutes. Serve hot with the salmon and garnish with some more fresh flat leave parsley. Enjoy

French Toast with Berry Compote and Coffee Ice Cream

French ToastI love having the odd naughty French toast for breakfast. I saw a beautiful loaf of brioche at the bakery and thought, why not make some at home. It was delicious and well worth the calories! Remember to make your ice cream mixture in advance.

Ingredients – French Toast

6 thick slices of brioche, about 2.5cm thick each
4 eggs
1/2 cup thickened cream
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste
2 tbsp butter
fresh mint leaves and maple syrup to serve

Method

Beat the eggs, cream and vanilla bean paste together. Transfer to a square or rectangular dish for easier dipping. Dip the slices 2 at a time on both sides. Make sure to get a good coating but do not soak too much. Melt the butter in a pan and fry the dipped bread slices for 2-3 minutes per side or until golden brown. Repeat with the other slices. If you have a bigger pan, do more slices at once.

Ingredients – Berry Compote

2 cups mixed fresh berries
2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp butter

Method

Melt the butter in a pot. Add the sugar and lemon juice and cook for 2 minutes then add berries and stir together well. Allow to cook for 4 – 5 minutes and serve warm.

Ingredients – Coffee Ice Cream

1 pint of vanilla ice cream
2 strong shots of espresso, cooled down

Method

Prepare the ice cream in advance. Take the vanilla ice cream out of the freezer and allow to soften. Add the coffee and using a hand or electric mixer combine well. Transfer back into original tub and place back in the freezer for 1 hour minimum.

Drizzle the toast with maple syrup, top with the berry compote, ice cream and fresh mint while still warm. Enjoy!

Chorizo, Garlic & Chilli Pasta

Chorizo Garlic & Chili Pasta

Im very much into pasta’s lately. Easy to make with so many options and endless amounts of flavours to add. This pasta is inspired by a pizza we had in Australia. Quick, easy and delicious. This recipe serves 4 people.

Ingredients

4 pork chorizo sausages
1/2 green chilli, sliced very thinly
16 garlic cloves, pealed and kept whole
1 cup fresh basil leaves
250g dried pasta of your choice
olive oil
salt and pepper
shaved parmesan cheese to serve

Method

Pre heat your oven to 160 degrees Celcius. Place the garlic cloves in a small oven proof dish. Pour oil over the garlic cloves to cover them completely and cook in the oven for 30 minutes.

Heat a large pot of salted water and boil the pasta as per the packet instructions.

While the pasta is boiling, squeeze the meat out of the chorizo sausages and break up in to small pieces before frying in a pan with 1/4 cup of oil. Once cooked turn off the heat and add the cooked garlic cloves and sliced chilli. Stir together.

Drain the pasta once cooked and add to the pan with the chorizo mixture. Add most of your basil leaving some for garnish. Drizzle with a little bit more olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Serve with the shaved parmesan cheese and enjoy.

Pasta Primavera

Pasta Primavera

Every Monday its time to bring out the thinking cap for a meatless Monday dinner. I remembered a pasta I used to have when I was still young and living in South Africa with my now husband and we used to frequent this great restaurant called Cappuccino’s. This would be about 12 years ago! They had this yummy vegetarian pasta and this is my attempt at recreating it. Enjoy

Ingredients

6 medium sized soft tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup tomato puree
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/4 cup fresh oregano
1/4 cup flat leave parsley
3/4 cup fresh basil
1/2 cup water
salt and pepper for seasoning
200ml thickened cream
1 green pepper, sliced
1 large yellow zucchini, sliced
1 large green zucchini, sliced
1 cup cherry tomatoes

Method

Heat oil in a pot and fry the onions and garlic for a few minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes, herbs tomato puree and water and season with salt and pepper. Allow to simmer for 1.5 hours stirring occasionally. Once the tomatoes are soft use a stick blender and blend the mixture in the pot or pan until smooth and add the cream and cherry tomatoes. Allow to simmer while the.

While this is simmering away, fry the sliced vegetables in a pan with a bit of oil. Fry until it starts to brown a bit. Add the tomato sauce to the vegetables and simmer while cooking the pasta of your choice as per packet instructions. Serve with parmesan and enjoy.

Butternut & Maple Bacon Risotto

Butternut & Maple Bacon Risotto

I love risotto and to keep it interesting its always good to experiment with some new flavours. I think a beetroot risotto will be my next mission but for now I present to you this yummy dish… enjoy

Ingredients – Butternut

800g butternut, peeled and cubed
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper

Method

Pre heat your oven to 180 degrees celcius and line a baking tray with baking paper. In a bowl mix the oil and butternut together and season with salt and pepper. Arrange on the baking tray and roast in the oven for 30 minutes or until its soft. (Leave oven on for bacon) Remove from oven and process with a stick blender until smooth. Set aside.

Ingredients – Maple Bacon

8 strips of streaky bacon
3 table spoons of maple syrup

Method

Mix the bacon and maple syrup together and arrange on a lined baking tray. Cook in the oven for 15 – 20 minutes, remove from oven and set aside. Break into smaller pieces.

Ingredients

2 shallots, finely chopped
2 tbsp rosemary, finely chopped
1.5 cups risotto rice
2L of vegetable stock
1/2 cup white wine
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
40 g butter

Method

Bring the stock to boil in a large pot. Fry the shallots and rosemary in a pan with a bit of oil until the onion is soft. Add the rice, stir and fry for another 2 minutes. Next add the white wine and scrape bottom of pan cooking until the wine has been absorbed. Now the stirring begins. Adding 2 ladles of stock at a time, stir until that stock has been absorbed and then add the next 2 ladles of stock. Cook until the rice is soft but still has a bit of a chewy centre. Turn off the heat, add the parmesan, butter and butternut. Mix well. Serve with the maple bacon and some grated parmesan. Enjoy

Fresh Tomato & Basil Pasta

Fresh Tomato & Basil Pasta

My garden has been producing the most beautiful produce so I decided to use the tomatoes and basil in a simple dish but keep it fresh to highlight these wonderful flavours. This is quick and easy to make and very yummy.

Ingredients

your choice of dried pasta
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
4 shallots, finely chopped
3 tomatoes, chopped
1 cup basil leaves
salt and pepper to taste
grated parmesan to serve
1/4 cup olive oil

Method

Boil the pasta as per packet instructions and drain. While pasta is cooking heat oil in a pan and fry the garlic and onion. I p-refer to burn mine a bit as it adds some nice sweet flavours to the pasta. Once fried, add in the cooked pasta, chopped tomatoes and basil, mix together and season with salt and pepper. Serve with the grated parmesan and there you go. As simple as that.