Friday, 11 July 2008

International Inspiration!

Currently Listening to: "Shosholoza" - Black Umfolozi

Whilst looking at my visitor stats earlier I noticed an huge increase in international readers for my blog. As I looked at all the different nations I thought "What is the national dish of New Zealand?!" This gave me the idea to once a week attempt a different national dish, but I need your help!

Please can everyone leave a comment (or send me an e-mail) saying:

1) What country you come from

2) What you consider to be your national dish.

I will then work my way through this list week by week.

Hope to hear from you all soon!


Thursday, 10 July 2008

Not quite what I promised...

Currently watching: "Master Chef!"

As promised I am writing my 2nd blog of the day. However after deciding what to make for the starter circumstances changed and I was told to fend for myself on the condition I only used food in the fridge, rather then opting for the easy way out and heading straight for the freezer.

After looking at a nearly empty fridge for about 10mins I made one of my healthy favourites:

Cajun Salmon Caesar Salad (without anchovies because there weren't any in the fridge...!)

Caesar Sauce

Double Cream
Pinch of salt
a squirt of lemon juice
half a teaspoon of parmesan cheese

some crack pepper
2 teaspoon cottage cheese (this is my own personal twist, some people don't like this!)

This is a simple way to whip up a quick Caesar sauce:

Whip the Cream, salt and lemon juice together. One the mixture thickens a little mix in the rest of the ingredients.

Job Done!

The Rest of the Dish

Pre-oven to 200C, take a Salmon Fillet and dust with Cajun seasoning and place in pre-heated oven for 15-20mins (depending on size). Whilst the Salmon is in the oven make your salad...

I used half a baby gem lettuce, peppers, cucumber and baby tomatoes. With the baby gem Lettuce I tossed in a drip of Farrington's "Blackberry and Vinegar Dressing". I was introduced to this dressing by my sister sometime ago but haven't been able to buy it as it was only sold local to her. However much to my delight, last week my local Waitrose started selling it along side there other new British produce. Yet another success story for real British cottage industry food mixing it with the big boys!

Anyway back to the dish in question... make salad on a baby gem base and add sauce. Sit down and enjoy!

I'll blog again very soon - promise.

...and the worst food and drink gadget award goes to...

Currently Listening to: "Bernstien: Westside Story Suite" - Joshua Bell

I was browsing the newly redesigned and I spotted a post about the following invention:

Ladies and Gentleman I am proud to present the "Gourmet on a Grant Worst Food and Drink Gadget 2008 Award" to -

Wine Glass Holder Necklace


Now I can sort of see the point if you're speed-wine tasting (like speed-dating but with wine. I'm sure they must do it in a America, if not I'm claiming the idea) and walking from table to table with the same glass whilst trying to write in your note pad. However the website is trying to sell it as a dinner party accessorise?!

"Keep your hands free at parties by keeping your wine close at heart! This clever little clip with adjustable strap holds a regular-size stemmed glass to your chest, giving you the freedom to snack and socialize as you sip!"

No prizes for guessing in what country the website is based that is trying to sell this gadget to make stuffing your face with free
canapés easier!

Also, isn't this invention particularly a bad idea for all you white wine drinkers out there? The glass will have more contact with your body, therefore warming your previously perfectly chilled measure of wine...

Anyway, must dash as I have the night off work tonight so I told Mum that I'd make a starter (which I will blog, honest) to go with the salmon that she's cooking for dinner tonight. Haven't even thought of what to make... Good job our Tesco is 24hrs!


Friday, 4 July 2008

New Job!

Currently Listening to: "Il Postino (main theme)" - Luis Enríquez Bacalov

Firstly I better start off with a HUGE apology as I haven't blogged for over a month... It's been a stupidly busy time for me recently, and because I'm living at home I don't cook as much as I do when I'm at uni.

Anyway, today I started a new part time job in a little restaurant called "Michael's". I initially applied for a job as waiting staff but they noticed on my CV that I had some kitchen experience so they offered me a job as Sous Chef. I obviously bit their hand off as the Chef -Patron (Michael Wichmann - it gets a bit confusing as myself the other assistant chef and the the chef-patron are called Mike) has worked at some of the worlds leading restaurants and has a couple of Michelin stars under his belt.

Well I thoroughly enjoyed my first shift and is by far the best kitchen I've worked in to date, all the food is prepared from fresh produce and there isn't a freezer in sight! I only took a picture of my first copy cat creation (Michael's signature desert) Chocolate Moose. Basically homemade white and milk chocolate mouse stacked and sandwiched between thin wafers of dark chocolate with a few raspberries thrown in for good measure. My decoration could do with a bit of work but I was generally pleased with this first attempt...

If anyone is up in Birkdale in the coming weeks for the British Golf Open it's well worth booking a seat in this great little place for some fantastic food (I know I'm a wee bit bias but hey!).

Speak soon