Category Archives: recipes

Ginger chili pork crackling with sweet chili sauce

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The beer pictured is Western Australian brew ‘Little Creatures Bright Ale.’ We are now lucky enough to have a new Creatures Brewery right here in Geelong, Victoria. A decent drop.

My friend and I were sitting around last night,  having a few beers when it hit that point in the night where we suddenly got the nibblies. I had a strip of pork rind that I’d cut off a roast, sitting in the fridge. I cut up a bit, fried it, whacked a bit of salt,  pepper and paprika on,  thinking that would sufficiently sooth the pangs. We got halfway through eating and realized we were so wrong! At this point, I saw the bottle of sweet chili sauce sitting in the cupboard. My only thought was ‘that would be wicked on crackling!’ I promptly cut up the rest of the rind,  made a ginger,  chili, garlic paste to go on top, and doused those pork strips in hot,  sweet,  sticky,  sour goodness!!!

You need;

Pork shoulder rind,  cut into strips, about 1cm thick

Plain oil for frying (e.g. vegetable, canola, peanut/ground nut e.c.t.)

Mix together a small chunk of ginger,  peeled and grated,  a garlic clove,  grated,  1 small chili,  finely chopped, 1/2 tsp salt,  1 tsp sugar (pound in mortar and pestle if you’ve got one. Not critical though).

Method:

Heat a layer (1/2cm or so) in a pan over medium heat until a piece of bread browns in 30 seconds. Carefully drop pork strips in,  fry for 5 minutes on one side,  then turn pieces over,  fry for another 5 or so,  until pork has just about stopped sizzling (means the moisture has fried out of it and equals crispy!). Drain pork on a brown paper bag,  whack ginger chili paste on and smother in sweet chili sauce. Happy drinking!!!

barbecued beef strips

This was done on the spur of the moment. I marinaded rump steak that had been bashed out with a meat tenderizer and cut thin on an angle in a mixture of mustard, homemade ketchup and tomato chutney, a bit of local honey, cumin powder, paprika, salt and pepper and fried on the hot plate in pork fat that I saved from the pulled pork I did the other week. The bread was home made using locally made Lauke Flour, also fried in pork fat. Healthy? Debatable. Delicious? You bet! Happy days! 🙂

pulled pork quesadillas

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I tried getting a picture of the pork when I first pulled it of the oven, but pulled pork by itself, isn’t terribly photogenic, (which is why I decided to make these. Lol, they look a bit prettier). I’ve been wanting to try this recipe for ages and despite it’s lack luster appearance, the meat itself is totally to die for! And making it couldn’t be easier. I researched several recipes and have come to the conclusion that there is no ‘right’ way to cook this. Slower, however, is definitely better and most cooks that I’ve read up on insist on pork shoulder, which is really good, as it’s usually a really cheap cut, so it won’t break the bank. (It usually goes for around $7-8 a kilo, so 2kg should set you back around $15 and will easily feed a crowd). Here’s my version, but feel free to experiment. I used an approximately 2kg piece, 1.7kg to be exact). Start early in the day as this meat needs to be in the oven for at least 7 hours. It’s an all day job.

Pulled Pork:

Step 1: Preheat oven to 200*C. Place a big sheet of foil in a large baking tray, enough to cover the entire pork shoulder, but tuck the excess foil away for now.

Step 2: Place pork shoulder in tray, rub all over with mustard then make a dry rub with 1tsp salt (sea salt if you can), 1 tbsp brown sugar, 1 tsp paprika, 1/2 tsp cumin powder and rub all over the meat. Leave to sit for 1/2 hr until meat looks shiny.

Step 3: Roast meat, uncovered for 12 -15 mins then take out, wrap the meat up completely in the excess foil (and more if you need it).

Step four: Reduce heat to 120*C, put back in the oven and let cook at 120*C for at least 7 hours, (8-10hrs is ideal – about 1 1/2 hrs per pound or 450g). It’s done when the bone/ bones pull cleanly away from the meat and the meat easily shreds or ‘pulls’ apart in your hands. Shred the meat, discard of the bones and pile meat up on things like soft bread rolls with coleslaw and BBQ sauce, baked potatoes with coleslaw, BBQ sauce and sour cream, mix through fresh pasta or just eat it straight from the tray, like I did 😛

OR you could make these!

Pulled Pork Quesadillas

Tortillas:

Mix 2 cups strong bread flour (I use Lauke Crusty White flour), 1/4 cup vegetable or olive oil and 1/2 cup warm water in a bowl. Mix together using chopsticks to make a soft, slightly tacky dough. Wrap in glad wrap and then in a tea towel and rest for 1/2 hr in a warm place.

Heat a heavy skillet or frypan on the stove over medium high heat. Take small balls of the dough, roll out thin and dry fry them, about 10 second each side until there’s bubbles and/ or light brown spots on each side. Stack them under a tea towel. (makes about 14-15 wraps). These will keep for a few days in a plastic bag.

Assemble:

Heat your fry pan. Take a wrap. On one half, load up with pulled pork, rocket or another bitter lettuce like radicchio or whatever salad things you like really and top with cheese. Fold it over so you have a semi circle shape. Brush each side with olive oil and fry each side until tortilla is crispy, the filling is hot and cheese has melted. Enjoy!

Brownies

Not so much local,  but wanted an excuse to post this 🙂

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You’ll need:

1/2 block dark chocolate, 3/4 cup brown sugar, 2 tbs butter, 1/2 cup cocoa blended with 1/2 cup boiling water 1 egg, 1 cup plain flour

Method: 1. Melt chocolate, butter, sugar until the sugar has dissolved 2. Stir in cocoa mixture,  then egg 3. Sift and gently fold in flour 4. Turn mixture into a small, greased baking dish and cook in a preheated oven at 180*C for about 20-30 minutes until a skewer comes out mostly clean. Leave it to cool (if you have,  unlike me,  the willpower to do so) and serve with strawberries and icecream. Happy eating! 🙂

Honey chilli oven roasted pork with rocket, parsley and red onion

honey roasted pork

You’ll need

> make up 1 quantity of the ‘marinade for pork’ (see below, search ‘marinade for pork’ in the search bar or click the marinade recipe tag below). Cut up 500g or so of pork (I used pork chops) and make up according to the marinade recipe. Leave over night, or 2 night’s if you like, it will keep.

Set your oven to 220*C (fan). Tip pork with marinade into a small roasting dish and place on the highest oven rack for 10 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 180*C, take out the pork, stir, pour off any juice into a pan or saucepan (pour off some of the fat if very fatty) and return pork to the oven. Cook for a further 15 minutes or so until just starting to brown.

Meanwhile, reduce the juice that’s in the pan over a medium high heat until browned and going sticky. Let cool.

After 15 minutes, take the pork out, stir through the reduced marinade and put back in the roasting tin to cool.

Serve with chopped rocket, parsley and finely chopped red onion.

Happy Days

Hedgehog

I didn’t use any local ingredients in this recipe but hedgehog is too good to pass up. I got the recipe from an old cook book here at home and want to pass it on. The same amount of bought biscuits will work too, but do make your own at least once, it’s so easy and really makes this dish a something, something.

For the biscuits:

> 1 cup plain flour (150g), 1 cup SR flour (150g), 1/2 cup butter or marg or dairy free marg (125g), 1/2 cup sugar (125g), 1 egg (use free range where you can)

Cream butter and sugar together, mix in beaten egg, mix, fold and chop flour in until a smooth dough forms. Form into a ball, chop dough into quarters (this makes rolling out easier). Roll out each quarter, 1 at a time to about 5 mm thick. Dust a biscuit cutter or cup with flour, cut into rounds and place on greased baking trays. Collect the scrap dough and roll out again until that quarter is used up. Repeat with the other 3 quarters. Bake at 180*C (gas) for 10-15 minutes until golden brown. leave to cool.

For the chocolate base:

Melt 1/2 cup butter or marg or dairy free marg 1/3-1/2 cup sugar and 2 tbsp cocoa in a saucepan over low heat. Add 1 beaten egg. Crumble 250g-300g of the cooled biscuits into the chocolate mix, or enough to make a stiff mixture. Line a small, deep sided dish (baking dish or tin will do) with foil and press the hedgehog firmly into it. Allow to set for a few hours in the fridge,

if you can wait that long.

Happy Days

marinade for pork

This marinade is sweet, pungent, heady and I can vouch for the fact that it goes really well with pork. I haven’t tried it yet with chicken or prawns (will be doing this next and will keep you updated) but i daresay it would go quite well with either of these too. I used coriander out of the garden and I think is way better than anything you’ll find in the shops. Hunt for it in your farmers markets. It’s well worth that extra mile.

You’ll need;

> prepare your meat (chop up chicken/ pork/ devein prawns, about 500-700g worth, you can get away with less prawns – enough to serve 3 or so)

> A handful or small bunch of coriander, washed and chopped, a decent chunk of ginger, peeled and grated, 1 red chilli finely chopped, 2 or 3 cloves of minced garlic. Pound together in a mortar and pestle until you have a fine paste.

> put paste in with your meat. Add the juice of 1/4 of an orange, a tsp honey, 2-3 tsp soy sauce and 2-3 tsp vegetable oil. Leave in a container overnight in the fridge.

Fry the meat over a high heat and use to make stir fries, fried rice, salads, serve with rice or noodles or enjoy on its own.

Quesadillas

quesadillas

Quesadillas

The tortilla wraps

> 2 cups Laucke Crusty White Bread Flour (or good, strong bread flour), 1/4 cup vegetable oil, 1/2 cup warm water

Stir then rub the oil into the bread flour until it looks like bread crumbs, add in the water until you have a soft, sticky-ish dough. you may need to add more or less water. Wrap in gladwrap and set aside for 30 minutes or so.

Prepare your filling in this time and set aside: For these I used Otway ham, finely shredded salad (see above for lettuce varieties) and grated up goat’s cheese. I used Kassari, a type of goats cheese that melts really well. You can use just about anything though.

My other suggestion is;

> 2 or 3 diced chicken legs marinated in a mixture of red wine or white wine vinegar (about a cap full or 2), tsp or 2 of honey, chilli flakes, oregano and a bit of olive oil, fried in the pan before adding to the quasedillas with lettuce, red onion and cheese

Back to the wraps:

Break off a small ball (about a heaped tsp full) of the dough. Using a rolling pin and on a floured surface, roll out as thin as you can. You really want the wraps no thicker than a couple of millemeters. It can be a bit fiddley. I’ve found the easiest way to do this is to hold the side facing away from you and roll to the center, give it a quarter turn and repeat until you have a flattish disc. Once it’s pretty flat roll it out like you would normal pastry. Don’t be afraid to really bash it out though at this point. the dough is pretty sturdy even when it’s wafer thin. Repeat for the remaining dough. Don’t try this when you’re pushed for time by the way. These wraps can be made up to a week in advance, if that helps. Just store in a plastic bag.

Once they’re rolled out (don’t stack uncooked wraps on top of each other by the way, they WILL stick) dry fry them one at a time in a really hot fry pan. Give them about 10 seconds per side until you see little brown spots/ bubbles form, flip them over and give them another 10 or so. Just use your eye for this as cooking time varies, even as you’re cooking. Stack cooked wraps in a clean, dry tea towel.

Assembly:

Heat a large fry pan (no oil). Place wraps on a clean board, place your fillings on one half, fold the wrap over so you have a crescent shape, brush outside of the wrap with olive oil, fry on both sides until crispy and the cheese has melted. Lift onto a plate, cut into wedges and eat.

Happy Days.