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Food, general thoughts, food…


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Italian Pork Tenderloin

The last of the pork tenderloin has been used. It was delicious and I don’t regret buying 7 trays of it and freezing them one bit, even though I had never cooked pork tenderloin previously. Sometimes you just have to take an opportunity when it presents itself and trust that you will make something good out of it.

This was the last of it and I wanted to make it count. This was a super tasty meal that I will make again should the opportunity present itself in the form of more tenderloin on sale. I might even try it substituting chicken, it should still hold up well.

Italian Pork Tenderloin
4 servings

2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup chopped bacon
2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped onion
750g pork tenderloin, cut into strips
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.
Saute the bacon, sage, parsley, sun-dried tomatoes, and onion 5 minutes, until onion is tender.
Mix the pork strips into the skillet, and brown about 10 minutes, turning once.
Stir the broth and heavy cream into the skillet, and season with salt and pepper.
Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sauce is thickened.

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Coffee & Date Slice

I enjoy nerdy jokes, science, philosophy, physics jokes (I don’t get maths ones, I am not geared right for those). Unfortunately I am the only one in my household that does. I also really enjoy absurdly silly kids jokes. Like my taste in music, my taste in jokes is very eclectic and, seemingly, a bit out of the ordinary. This both amuses and irritates the people around me as they are either peppered with utter nonsense or having jokes lengthily explained to them. As we all know, once you have to explain a joke it isn’t really that funny anymore but I am compelled to share my amusement even at the cost of said amusement.

Anyway, there you have it, a small snippet of my personality duly doled out and shared. Lucky you 🙂

The below recipe, by the way, really really really good! The coffee icing brings it to a whole new level.

Coffee & Date Slice
Makes 24 pieces

2 eggs
1 cup brown sugar
175g melted butter
1 1/2 cups plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup milk
1 cup chopped dates

Coffee Icing
2 cups icing sugar
2 Tbls hot coffee
1 Tbls softened butter

Preheat oven to 150C.
Grease and line a lamington pan.
Mix together all slice ingredients, stir until well combined.
Transfer to pan and bake for 35-40 mins.
Cool on wire rack, top with coffee icing when cool.

Mix all icing ingredients together. Top cooled slice. Cut slice when icing is set.


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Baked Chicken

I used drumsticks (as you can see) for this recipe. I think I could have added a little more salt to the flour mix to bring out the flavour a little more. Other than that it was a very pleasant and simple way to prepare chicken pieces.

We had ours with broccoli and roasted crushed potatoes.

I imagine that any soup sachet that you have on hand would be suitable to substitute for the tomato. Even 2 or 3 tsps of powdered stock would work at a pinch.

Baked Chicken
Serves: 4

750 g chicken thighs
1 cup flour
1 x 50 g sachet tomato cup a soup
All purpose seasoning
Seasoning, to taste

Mix flour, soup sachet and seasoning in a plastic bag.
Dip chicken into water.
Place chicken, a few pieces at a time, in coating mixture.
Shake to coat.
Place on baking tray lined with baking paper and sprayed with oil.
Once all chicken has been coated, spray with oil and bake at 180°C for 30 minutes until golden brown, turning once.


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Chilli Pork with Basil and Coconut cream

I finally got around to using some of those little chillies that randomly grew in my patch. They are still happily growing and producing bundles of hot little morsels of pain ready to use in the kitchen. Last year they were quite mild, this year they seem to have come into their own and give quite a punishing kick if you happen to stick a raw one on your tongue to test the heat. I, of course, know this by experience. They also sting like nothing else when you get them in your eyes, also by experience (I can’t be trusted in the kitchen). Who knew that washing my hands with soap and a scrubbing brush twice would have no appreciable effect on the eye watering properties of chilli?

They do add a real pizazz to a meal though so I think I will try to keep them in my cooking and definitely try to keep them out of my eyes.

Chilli Pork with Basil and Coconut cream
Serves 4

2 Tbls oil
1 onion, chopped
1 Tbls finely chopped chilli
1 red capsicum sliced
500g pork tenderloin, cut into strips
1 cup shredded basil
2 Tbls fish sauce
1 Tbls finely chopped lemongrass
1 cup coconut cream

Heat oil in wok. Add onion, capsicum and chilli, stir fry for 3 mins.
Add pork and cook for further 4 mins. Add basil, fish sauce
And lemongrass and cook for 1 min. Stir in coconut cream.
Heat through and serve with rice.


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Oven Baked BBQ Pork Belly

I have house guests so I am cooking a lot recently but have not been very good with keeping up the posting. I will try to catch up over the next few days.

My house guests are incredibly brave people who have immigrated to Australia with a suitcase each and a dream of a better life. I cannot but wonder at their bravery and support their hopes and dreams. I was fortunate enough to have been born here, if not for that accident of birth I may have been in their position. I am grateful every day for the fact that I am fortunate enough to be able to walk freely in the streets without risk of attack, injury or death. We, in Australia, are indeed lucky and I have seen enough of the world to know and appreciate it.

Oven Baked BBQ Pork Belly

4 Tbls tomato sauce
1 Tbls ready made BBQ sauce
1 Tbls Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbls oil
1 Tbls cider vinegar
1 Tbls sweet chilli sauce
2 Tbls Kecap Manis
1 tsp mustard powder
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp minced ginger

500g pork belly strips

Mix all sauce ingredients.
Place pork in a baking dish.
Pour over sauce and marinate for a few hours.
Preheat oven to 200C
Cook for 45 mins or until cooked and crisp.
Serve with rice or vegetables.


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Jelly Crystal Biscuits

I don’t know where this recipe came from but for a kids party they would be a real hit. I have been wanting to try them now for a while but just never quite got around to it. The jelly stained them in a lot brighter hues than I expected but didn’t impart a ton of flavour. They were a nice biscuit though, light, sweet and buttery add to that combination sparkly (from rolling in jelly crystals) and you have the perfect fairy party biscuit.

I was limited to 2 colours by what i had on hand but it wouldn’t be hard to make a rainbow of different ones.

Jelly Crystal Biscuits

Makes 40

1 3/4 cup plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
150g butter
1/2 cup cater sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
4x 85g packets of jelly crystals, assorted flavours

Preheat oven to 180C
Line 2 large baking trays.
Cream butter and sugar together until fluffy.
Add egg and vanilla and beat to combine.
Gradually add flour mixed with baking powder.
Divide dough into 4 portions and place in seperate bowls.
Add 1 Tbls of different jelly crystals to each bowl.
Knead well until jelly is incorporated.
Roll spoonfuls of dough into balls and roll in remaining jelly crystals.
Place balls on trays and flatten with a your fingers.
Bake for 10-12 mins or until they move when pushed.
Cool on trays for 5 mins before removing to a wire rack.
Store in an airtight container.


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Chocolate Cookie Tart

I saw this in a magazine a few weeks ago and just had to try it. It was as good as the picture looked.

Try it, you will see.

Chocolate Cookie Tart

Serves 8

1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cup malted milk powder
1/4 cup cocoa
1/2 cup castor sugar
Pinch salt
170g butter, chopped
Milk to bind
180g chocolate melts
1 cup chocolate malt balls

Preheat oven to 160C.
Pulse dry ingredients in a food processor and then add the butter.
If your mix does not readily form a dough, add milk gradually until it does.
Press dough into the base of a flan tin or spring form pan.
Bake for 20-25 mins.
Remove from oven and immediately place chocolate melts on top.
Allow to melt then spread over the surface.
Meanwhile roughly chop the malt balls and scatter over before chocolate cools.
Let cool in pan then remove and slice to serve.