Monday, April 19, 2010

Most delicious meatloaf- the BEST!

So winter is coming in NZ and so are the recipes for comfort food! I had the upmost desire to make meatloaf last week and it was absolutely scrumptious. It's not boring meatloaf.. it explodes of different flavors in your mouth! Unfortunately, I do not have any pictures but will post some when I make it again.. It pairs well with my vanilla mash.

Delicious Meatloaf

1/2 small-medium onion chopped
2 garlic cloves minced
1/2 celery rib chopped
1/3 cup grated apple
1 t grated ginger
1/2 c breadcrumbs
1/4 c milk
1 T worcestershire sauce
1 T red wine vinegar
1 t balsamic vinegar
2 slices middle bacon
1/2 cup dates chopped
thyme & rosemary (fresh if possible)
3 T blue cheese
1/8 cup pine nuts
1 lb ground pork
1 egg
1 t salt
1/2 t white pepper
1/4 t black pepper

1. Saute first five ingredients over medium heat until slightly browned. Set aside to cool.
2. Fry bacon until somewhat crispy. Remove from heat and when cool use kitchen scissors to cut into small pieces. Add to vegetables.
2. Separately, soak breadcrumbs in milk in a large bowl for 5 minutes.
3. Add cooled vegetables/bacon to the breadcrumbs and add worcestershire sauce, red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar and chopped dates.
4.Add in several sprigs of thyme and rosemary. (If rosemary is dry, crush it in your hand before adding to mixture.) Next, add crumbled blue cheese and pine nuts.
5. Finally add in one egg, ground pork (pork mince) and salt and peppers and mix with hands (really work the ingredients into the meat!)
6. Take out a roasting pan and make a small/med loaf in the middle.
7. Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour and 20 minutes until middle is cooked through.
8. Remove from oven and let rest 10 minutes. Slice and enjoy with Vanilla Mash.
*Serves 3-4 people.

Vanilla Mash

3 med kumaras
1 t vanilla bean paste
2 T sweetened condensed milk
1/8 c cream (warm)
salt for seasoning

1. Peel and cube kumara. Steam until soft.
2. Mash and mix in remaining ingredients.
3. Serve immediately!
*Serves 3-4 people.
*For smoother texture use electric beaters.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Thyme & Basil


Let me introduce you to the beginning of my culinary herb garden; thyme & basil. I bought the basil at a fruit market and then a week later I picked up thyme at the supermarket. I would like to install a plant box above the sink and add rosemary, chives, mint, cilantro.. anything else you would recommend?

So to celebrate my mini herb garden I am sharing two easy yet delicious recipes with you.

Herbed corn salad

2 corn cobs
1 T butter
6-8 small basil leaves cut into small pieces
1/8 cup parmesan grated/or sliced
salt & pepper for seasoning

1. Preheat oven to BROIL. Place whole corn (still in husks but with tassels cut off) directly onto racks in the oven. Turn corn with tongs every 5 minutes until the husks are light brown and close to burning.

2. Take corn out of the oven and carefully peel back husks. If corn is thoroughly cooked it should be vibrant yellow and squirt a milky liquid when poked with a knife.

3. Shave corn with a serrated knife into a small bowl.

4. Add in the butter and season with salt & pepper. When the butter is melted, mix through the cut basil and grated parmesan.

5. Serve immediately while hot! Enjoy!

Vegetable Quiche

1 med white potato cubed
1 med kumara cubed
1/2 c of ripe pumpkin cubed
2 small garlic cloves
1 small onion
1/2 stalk of celery
1 T olive oil
5 fresh thyme sprigs
6 eggs
150mls fresh cream
salt & pepper
3/4 cup grated Edam cheese (or mozzarella)
1/4 cup grated parmesan

1. Place potato, kumara and pumpkin in steamer. Cook until soft but not falling apart.

2. Meanwhile, slice onion and celery into small pieces. Mince garlic. Toss into a small saucepan with olive oil and saute on low-med heat until slightly translucent and browned.

3. Take out a medium size casserole dish and add in steamed vegetables. Top with sauteed vegetables from saucepan. Let cool about 10 minutes.

4. Pull the thyme springs into small pieces and sprinkle over vegetables. Next, top with grated cheeses.

6. Whisk the 6 eggs and fresh cream in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper.

7. Pour the egg mixture over the vegetables. The mixture should completely cover the vegetables.

8. Set oven to 200C or about 375F.

9. Cook for about 50 minutes to an hour. Check middle with a knife to see if it is cooked.

10. Take out of oven and serve immediately. Mmm!

*Do not fill right to the top of the dish as the eggs will puff up during baking.
*If you are short on egg mixture just add in a few tablespoons of milk.
*Always put the cheese in first.. putting it on last will just make it burn easily in the oven.