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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!

Pasta

Mum bought me a pasta machine for my birthday this year, (so stoked!). I’ve been using it extensively to make egg pasta and plain wheat noodles. I use good strong bread flour to make my noodles, specifically South Australia’s Lauke Crusty White bread flour, which you can pick up at the supermarket in 600g, 5kg and 10kg bags ($20 for 10kg makes for good value). You can make these noodles by hand if you don’t have a pasta machine (I’ve included the method I used to make them by hand). I started out this way, but if you get into it, invest in one. Even a little one from any good kitchen/ homeware shop will do the trick.

Egg Noodles

Step 1: 95 – 100g flour in a bowl, make a well and put in an egg and a good glug of olive oil (or vegetable oil) in a bowl.

Step 2: Using chopsticks, quickly combine the flour with the egg/ oil mixture in a circular motion until the mix is well combined. Use a circular motion (going in the same direction) with your hand to form a soft, sticky dough. Knead until smooth. Rest for 1/2 hr or so.

Step 3: USING A PASTA MACHINE – Set pasta machine on the highest setting. Cut dough into 2 equal pieces and roll dough each piece through machine, fold in half and roll through again. Repeat this process until dough is smooth and pliant, and has lightened in color. Reduce the setting until you get your desired thickness. Once you’re on your thinnest (desired) setting, roll dough through again 4 or 5 times to stretch the noodle sheet and make it thinner. Then either use the attachments to cut the noodles, or roll up noodle sheet and cut to size. Don’t be disheartened if you were like me and just starting out and it doesn’t work first time. It takes a little time to get to know your pasta machine and when you work out how best to use it, it’s one of the most satisfying things in the world.

Step 3: BY HAND – Dust your work bench and rolling pin with flour. Cut dough into 2 pieces. Take one piece and roll out into a very thin rectangle sheet (about 1-2mm thick). (This takes some real elbow grease, so to speak, so don’t feel bad if you’re puffed by the end). Roll up one end of the sheet to the center, then repeat to the other side. Use a sharp knife to cut noodles to desired length – 1/2cm thick for tagliatelle or 1.5cm/2cm for pappardelle)

Toast to the Coast, on the Moorabool Vally

 

This is a ridiculously late post for this event (inexcusably so, to be honest…) but Geelong’s Toast to the Coast wine, food and music festival happens every year over two days on the first weekend of November. (Same weekend as Melbourne Cup). Every year Geelong’s local wineries throw open their doors to the public to come and taste their fabulous wines. Guest wineries and local and regional food producers also come and lay down everything they’ve got and local musicians get on board to get one of Geelong’s biggest parties started. Toast also run a bus service to help get you there and back again and so our you can create your own hop on-hop off wine tour. And while I haven’t tried private tours are available. With the three different wine regions, Moorabool Valley, Surf Coast and Bellarine, open all weekend it’s one festival you really oughta try at least once (or more.). So I know it’s only February, and this year’s is still eight months away. But if you’re like me and already thinking about it, here’s some photo’s from last year to whet your appetite.

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! 🙂

Toast to the Coast: The Surfcoast on Saturday November the 1st 2014.

This is a ridiculously late post for this event (inexcusably so, to be honest…) but Geelong’s Toast to the Coast wine, food and music festival happens every year over two days on the first weekend of November. (Same weekend as Melbourne Cup). Every year Geelong’s local wineries throw open their doors to the public to come and taste their fabulous wines. Guest wineries and local and regional food producers also come and lay down everything they’ve got and local musicians get on board to get one of Geelong’s biggest parties started. Toast also run a bus service to help get you there and back again and so our you can create your own hop on-hop off wine tour. And while I haven’t tried private tours are available. With the three different wine regions, Moorabool Valley, Surf Coast and Bellarine, open all weekend it’s one festival you really oughta try at least once (or more.). So I know it’s only February, and this year’s is still eight months away. But if you’re like me and already thinking about it, here’s some photo’s from last year to whet your appetite.

From Geelong to Trentham

Go on a day trip from Geelong to Trentham, via Mt Anakie and Daylesford, straight up the Geelong Ballan Road (C141), with a few stops along the way. Happy travelling.

First stop, Del Rios Winery, Mt Anakie. Award winning wines. Pinot Noir with a 94 James Halliday rating. It’s a beautiful winery. Free wine tastings and restaurant with a Spanish influence. Perfect for a day out. Check their website for more at http://www.delrios.com.au/
Del Rios Winery, Mt Anakie. Llamas!!!!! They have llamas!!!!!
Cliffy's Emporium, Daylesford. Baguette and an awesome long black for lunch. Foodies will feel like a kid in a toy shop in here. Local produce, food and wine. They have their own bar with a really cool beer and wine list too.
Second stop, Cliffy’s Emporium, Daylesford. Baguette and an awesome long black for lunch. Foodies will feel like a kid in a toy shop in here. Local produce, food and wine. They have their own bar with a really cool beer and wine list too. check their Facebook page for more at https://www.facebook.com/cliffysemporium.daylesford?rf=143938252377008
Just down the road from Daylesford and heading towards Trentham, is the Musk Estate Passing Clouds winery. This is the coolest little winery. Check my feature page on these guys or visit their website, www.passingclouds.com.au for details on their wines and their upcoming annual wine release.
Third stop, Just down the road from Daylesford and heading towards Trentham, is the Musk Estate Passing Clouds winery. This is the coolest little winery. Check my feature page on these guys or visit their website, http://www.passingclouds.com.au for details on their wines and their upcoming annual wine release.
Never know what you'll find. Not sure what these guys were doing but it looked like  they were just out for a weekend drive.
Fourth stop, Trentham. Never know what you’ll find. Not sure what these guys were doing but it looked like they were just out for a weekend drive.
Cool, old cars.
Cool, old cars.
The cutest vintage clothes shop I've seen for a while. Gorgeous clothes, beautiful handmade shawls, cottons and collectors pieces, hand dyed lambs wool gloves and one off sample peices from all over the word, particularly from France. My immediate thought when I walked in was 'christmas presents'. Email Anne Moulding at annemoulding@bigpond.com if you want to find out more or visit Trentham The Spotted Pony Salon, 40 Trentham Rd Trentham, VIC, 3458
The cutest vintage clothes shop I’ve seen for a while. Gorgeous clothes, beautiful shawls and scarves, cottons and collectors pieces, hand dyed lambs wool gloves and one-off sample pieces from all over the word, particularly from France. Spotted Pony has new pieces as well, including the cutest summer dresses. My immediate thought when I walked in was ‘christmas presents’. Email Anne Moulding at annemoulding@bigpond.com if you want to find out more or visit Trentham The Spotted Pony Salon, 40 Trentham Rd
Trentham, VIC, 3458
Fourth stop, Trentham's Historic RedBeard Sourdough Bakery. Woodfired Scotch Ovens, good coffee, local produce, lovely courtyard and these awesome pizza slice things. Check the website for all the deets http://www.redbeardbakery.com.au/
Fourth stop, Trentham’s Historic RedBeard Sourdough Bakery. Woodfired Scotch Ovens, good coffee, local produce, lovely courtyard and these awesome pizza slice things. Check the website for all the deets http://www.redbeardbakery.com.au/

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.

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