Food Day Tuesday; Jamie Oliver Sticky Lamb Stew

Jamie; you had me at lamb...

Ok, so I am not going to write out the whole recipe for this one (see link below), but trust me this is delicious, warming and perfect for the cold Aussie winter ahead. I woke on Monday to a rainy day… and hoped that the rain would clear in time for my double outdoor personal training group sessions that night (it did mind you).

On seeing the weather I thought I could do with a hearty casserole when I got home, and didn’t fancy the idea of cooking at 8pm  Given that I was going to be training for 2hrs I needed something I could put on at low heat for a few hours and come home to a warm hearty meal.  Jamie’s sticky lamb stew was first made for me by a friend last year – and the flavours were so amazing, the meat so soft I fell in love.

I do a few things different to Jamie. I use vegemite instead of marmite. I use a whole stubbie of stout (Guinness), and the same amount of stock (so a little more liquid). I also just use 2 large whole carrots, and chop up whatever mushrooms I can get. I used a brown onion this time in place of the red.  For flavour and to keep cost down instead of cubed lamb, I like to use shoulder chops that have the little round marrow bone in them, once slow cooked the meat just falls apart, and the marrow – yum!

But here are my 2 top secrets on modifying Jamie’s recipe.

1. I use my enamel covered cast iron pot to slow cook it in my oven. I brown the meat, add everything on the stove top and get it simmering away as per the recipe, but then I put the pot with lid on in the oven on about 160 Celsius for 2 – 2.5 hours.

2. At the end of the cooking I pull it out and add a couple of tablespoons each of honey and Worcestershire sauce. I do this to taste. Testing the sauce to make sure that it is not to sweet or savoury. It is just something that I feel gives it a little more depth in flavour.

I just serve this up and eat it stand alone. It is good with a slice of rustic bread like a sourdough to soak up the sauce, but I am trying to eat low carb (with varied success I might add). This dish is like a big thick rich soup stew and while the pics don’t do it justice. It is one amazing cold night treat! Oh and it freezes well too 🙂

P.S I know the chippolata sausages sound weird but they are awesome in it, I only used about 8 as they were a little bigger and just threw them in I did not skewer them.

Thanks again Mr Oliver,Till next time, Lin xox

dark, sticky stew | Jamie Oliver | Food | Recipes (UK).

Food Day Tuesday; Asian Pork with Bean Shoot Salad

Asian Pork with Bean Shoot Salad...

I love a good piece of pork on my fork… Pork is a meat that I find tasty and with many of the new cuts today being very lean, makes this meat a winner. I brought a piece of Pork Loin and wanted to make something quick and easy and what cuisine is quicker than Asian. The good thing about this meal is the flavors are strong but not overpowering, the salad is fresh and crunchy from the bean shoots and the pork is warm and tasty.

I love Asian food, usually I don’t bother cooking it too much as we eat it a lot for dinner at work. It is cheap, quick and very tasty – all keys when you only have a half hour dinner break and don’t want to spend all your hard earned coin on work dinners 7 nights a fortnight. (We don’t have the option of taking food to work in my job, you have to eat out)

Being off work for the past 6 weeks (one more week left) I felt like a twist on making my own style Asian salad. It is inspired by a Vietnamese dish called Bun – a type of cold rice noodle salad with warm lemongrass grilled pork on the top and dressed with a sugar chilli  sauce.

Meat (per person)

150- 200gm Pork Loin

I first marinated the pork in a mix of

1/2 tsp Chilli paste,

1 tsp minced garlic,

Juice of half a lemon

1 tsp coriander paste and some extra fresh leaves picked

1 teaspoon of sugar

1 pinch of salt.

The marinade measures depend on you, how much you use depends on what heat level or garlic level you like. Combine to your own tastes (checking and rebalancing if needed)   I cover the pork in it and let this sit for around 15mins (or longer for a more intense flavor).

Pan fry pork on each side till sealed and brown then transfer to a oven safe dish to cook in the oven for 20mins at around 180C. Let rest for 5 mins then slice and serve on the bed of salad.

Salad (per person)

The salad is very simple, but very tasty.

One big handful of bean shoots

Coriander Leaves picked (this can be substituted if you don’t like the taste for parsley)

Half Lebanese cucumber deseeded and sliced thinly.

1/4 of a Red or Yellow Capsicum (Bell Pepper) (green doesn’t have the sweet flavor needed) cut into thin short batons.

Wash all the salad well in a bowl of water, drain and dress with the following and allow to sit to absorb dressing while meat is in the oven


Juice of 1/2 lemon

1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar

1/2 tsp chilli paste

1 tablespoon of sugar

1 tsp sesame oil

pinch of salt

Again this is to my tastes, once combined, rebalance to your liking, pour over salad.

Vegetarian Option – Use firm tofu instead of pork – simply slice down the centre cover in the same marinade and then pan fry in a little sesame oil till sealed on each side and warmed through.

That is it, simple quick dinner, with no carbs and very filling.

Hope you enjoy it, till next time…

Lin xox

Food Day Tuesday; Mouthwatering Mushrooms

Jamie Oliver is fun to watch and has simple recipes to follow! His food pops with flavour and is like a party for your taste buds. So when I was banged up in hospital recently I managed to catch an episode where he made steak sandwiches, crispy potatoes, a simple beetroot salad and what looked to me like the most mouth-watering mushrooms ever.

Seriously when I saw this episode of 30min dinners I was about a week into eating hospital food and my taste buds started tingling. I haven’t had a chance to make the sandwich, potatoes or salad yet. But I have cooked the mushrooms a few times. And I make it even simpler than Jamie – His recipe is here check it out.

Jamie Oliver’s 30-minute meals: Steak sarnie, crispy new potatoes, cheesy mushrooms and beetroot salad | Mail Online

I used some a little chilli (from the tube variety), garlic and 1 tsp of olive oil per mushroom and mixed together in a bowl. Spooned evenly into the mushrooms and topped with cheddar. Banged them in the oven for 30mins while everything else cooks and oh i just  I used flat BBQ mushrooms, but have also done it with bigger button mushrooms when they  didn’t have the BBQ ones.

Seriously get on this recipe, it is an easy side for dinner with a taste explosion or could even be served as a quick entrée or appetizer – Oh and remember that you could always make a couple of mushrooms per person and replace the meat in the meal!

Till next time, Lin   xox

Food Day Tuesday – Mango Salsa with Pork

Mango Salsa & Pork (sorry for the bad iphone image)

In the Summer Time when the weather is Fine, you’ve got salad, you’ve got salad on your mind! Well Hey I have salad on my mind… and there is no salad like a salsa when it’s hot.

On Monday night I was cooking for a friend at her place, so I needed something quick, easy, and tasty.. I had made this a month or so ago and posted a photo on FB, Jules liked the photo so I thought I would cook it for her.

I love the idea of different types of Salsa’s. A good Salsa is fresh with a zing. In this case the mango and avocado work together with the crunch of corn, capsicum and sping onions, the Zing was proudly brought to you by the juice of  Lemon and Lime… All the players came together to form the prefect accompaniment to the oven baked (slightly spicy) pork.

I got my Pork from Woolworth’s – it is a ready to go vacum pack called –  Butterflied pieces of pork with herbs and spices. I set the oven to 180c and then pan fried the pork sealing each side, then popped it on an oven tray (with some baking paper on the bottom for easier cleaning) & wacked it in the oven for about 30mins (note if one piece is thicker than the other you may need to put it in for a little longer taking the thinner pieces out to rest.)

You could use other Pork, like a cutlet and marinate it yourself…                                     Don’t like Pork – You could also do the salsa with lamb or chicken.                                                                       If you are vegetarian or vegan – tofu would be nice (you could rub a little chilli and lemon on it and pan fry it quickly) add a few cashew nuts to the salsa too. Just make the salsa before quickly pan frying your tofu!

The alternative to cooking in the Oven is the BBQ. I like the Oven method it makes it juicy – the BBQ will do the same if you are a good BBQer – and the trick is again to seal it on the BBQ and then turn it down to cook slowly and not burn or dry it  out.

Now onto the Salsa – While this is cooking in the oven, I grab a big bowl and put the following in..

1 can of Corn Kernels (420g) drained

1/2  Large Red Capcium (or 1 smaller one) (diced into small pieces)

3 Sping Onions, finely sliced (into rounds)

1 Mango – slice off the cheeks, then cross hatch and scoop out of skin with a spoon, chop other bits off the mango as you can (before hitting the stone) into cubes.

1 Avocado – Halve lengthways and then take stone out (with a sharp knife hit the stone, twist and it will pop out) then cross hatch each half and scoop out with a teaspoon.

Juice of 1/2 lemon & 1/2 Lime (or a full lemon if you have no lime) this is important for zesty flavour and also to stop anything from browning.

Stir it all together gently, the avacado may breakdown a little but will add to the citrus dressing. I put a little crack of sea salt over it too. All ready to go!

So when the Pork is cooked I let it rest for a few minutes before slicing it, plate the pork with some rocket leaves (for a peppery flavour) and the salsa – I use the salsa as a bit of a condiment with the pork… Very tasty and ready in around 35mins – Love Summer!        This is quick and If I can say so myself tastier than take away!

Oh BTW  the Packet of Pork (approx 700gm) and the Salsa recipe will feed 4 people

Till next time

Lin xox

Food Day, Tuesday; Tuna, Chickpea and Asparagus Salad

Ready to be eaten!

Summer is the season for a good salad & I love a good salad.

I had some asparagus that needed to be used, and I needed to eat Protein after an hour and a half of training. So with those two in mind I grabbed the asparagus, a can of tuna & threw together a few more items to make filling yet light salad.

I was cooking for myself tonight,  this will serve 1 person for a full dinner. (Mind you I only managed to finish about half of it.)

I put it all on a dinner plate as I go and then it is ready to eat…So what is in it?                     1 Large Handful of rocket and baby spinach leaf mix.                                                        1/6 Red Capsicum (Bell Pepper) cut into strips.                                                                                           6 Asparagus Spears (panfried in olive oil spray for 5 -8 mins until they brown a little)        1/4 of a red onion in slices. (I wilted in the hot pan with the asparagus for a minute) Remove the Asparagus and Onion – add to salad plate.                                                               1/2 can of Chickpeas (200g) (drained, washed and warmed in the pan for 1 min) plate up     90gm Canned Tuna (flaked over the top)                                                                        40gm Goats Feta (or regular if you prefer)

I heat and reduce a couple of tablespoons of balsamic vinegar in a pan and then spoon over the top, if you don’t like balsamic substitute for your preferred dressing.

Enjoy you summer salads!

Lin xox

Food Day – Tuesday, Paella Inspired Baked Beans

All ready to be Baked in the Oven!

I love to cook, and in the past have posted pics to FB of the food I have made.

I often get comments from friends wondering where their serve is, or asking for recipes. So I have decided that as part of my blog I will try to share the food I have been making and eating on here, Hence the Food Day – Tuesday! After all what would a blog be without a regular update that includes  a catchy or trite “day” title in it 😉

Today’s recipe is brought to you by the letter “B” – and the left overs that I had in my fridge and cupboard. The “B” is for Baked Beans (not everyones cup of Tea) but these are not the Bean’s means Heinz canned type, these are the tasty home baked variety.

If you are not a fan of beans, maybe you could give them another go, or stop reading now No offence taken!… This recipe was inspired by the fact I am trying to limit my carb intake at the moment, and eat more protein and veg. I had left over roast chicken in the fridge, a chorizo sausage and thought – i can’t have paella because of the rice… Last week I was reading some recipes and Homemade Baked Beans was one… Bamm the two concepts came together in my mind and Paella Inspired Baked Beans was born!

Ingredients                                                                                                                            1 Brown Onion,cut in half then sliced                                                                                   1 Chorizo Sausage (smoked avail from supermarket deli), take off the skin and cut lengthways into half and then lengthwise again into long strips, i then chop into cubes.    1/2 Red Capsicum (Bell Pepper), sliced into small lengths                                        100gm Cooken Chicken (I used a BBQ chicken breast), chopped into cubes                  1 Clove Garlic, minced I used a garlic press, but your could chop finely.                           2 x Canned Cannelli Beans (Approx 420gm each) drained and rinsed.                            1 x Tblspn Tomato Paste, if you dont have any use tomato sause.                                     1 x Can of Chopped Tomoates (420gm)                                                                             1 x Can Water. (Approx 420ml)                                                                                             2 x Tblspn Worcestershire Sause.

Method ;                                                                                                                                  Put your oven on to warm up at 150c, Place a little olive oil or spray into a fry pan, heat and then add the Chorizo, fry this until it starts to sizzle and release the fat and paprika flavour into the pan, this will not take long, and shake the pan a little to move the sausage and stop it burning.                                                                                                                    Next add onion and stir to soak up the flavour from the chorizo, the onion will start to caramelise and then add capsicum to the pan, it will absorb the favour and begin to caramelise too. The onions and capsicum will soften and begin to break down.                  Next add my chicken stir, add garlic next (I find if you add it earlier it can burn and gives a bitter flavour) stir it through, next add the tomato paste, stir together.                                Now add the beans to the mix. Stir and cook for a minute then add the tinned tomatoes, water and Worcestershire sauce.                                                                                             I cook for a few more minutes in the frying pan to bring it all together, check the seasoning of the sauce and add a little salt or more worcertershire to your taste.

You could eat it now if you don’t have time and skip the oven stage,(add only 1/2 the water if you do this) but baking them give you a lovely flavour as the baking breaks down the beans a little and they have a creamy texture inside.

Transfer it to a oven bake dish, cook uncovered for 1 hr  on 150c. Serve with a squeeze of lemon for a little extra flavour!

Well my oven just chimed and they are ready now so, Bon Appetite

Lin xox