Lightly Spiced Tiger Prawn, Sweet Potato, Daikon & Thai Basil Fritter, Served With a Green Nham Jim Dipping Sauce

Lightly Spiced Tiger Prawn, Sweet Potato, Daikon & Thai Basil Fritter, Served With a Green Nham Jim Dipping SauceFinally I’m back behind the keyboard, I have an increasingly large list of events, recipes, anecdotes and articles in the back burner for ‘Articuleat’, (I just need to find the damn time to write them up).

The London pop-up scene has swallowed me up whole at the minute, in a big pile of edible insects and Thai food. Its amazing fun! Not to mention that the Begging Bowl is busier than ever. Thai food in London is booming and why not? It’s awesome! I feel privileged to be part of it.

I will soon be updating you all with what I’ve been up to in my ‘behind the whites section’. I’ve just finished another pop-up with EatGrub at the ‘Hot House Rooftop‘ in London Fields. I’m also going to be helping Andy Oliver at his next pop-up with ‘Som Saa’, at the chilli festival ‘chilli chilli bang bang’ in Dalston Yard – all exciting stuff.

Now anyway I’m getting ahead of myself again. This recipe for you today is a fairly quick one to put together (once you have dried your own turmeric and ginger). It’s the perfect accompaniment to a hot summer’s day, which we all know should be enjoyed with a nice cold pint in one hand and a fork in the other (not that I’ve got out of the shade of the extraction fans much recently).

When I make this dish I like to make my own mild curry powder to add to my egg batter before frying. Fresh turmeric, like ginger, is a rhizome – a thick underground stem. Due to this it take a lengthy, but simple process to dry it out and grind to a powder. Both fresh spices can be dried in the same way – peel, thinly slice and dry in a warm dry place, on a drying rack for at least 24 hours (May need longer dependent on environment). You can buy pre-dried turmeric and ginger but it’s in no way as good, or even similar to the real thing, try making it you’ll love it (why not make loads and leave it in the kitchen for another day?). However, when working with red turmeric be carful, the stuff stains your bloody hands orange for days. The last thing you want is everyone thinking that you look like an ‘umpa lumpa’ from the neck down!

I also think it’s important for me to talk you through making your own chilli powder. At the begging bowl we always use dried chillies and call it ‘blue tongue’? Now that I think of it, I actually have no bloody idea why or where that came from? I’m assuming it’s something to do with the fact that it’s fucking hot and it will certainly leave you with a burning mouth if you’re not careful. Now I’m lucky when making this as for best results it should be made in a wok (which I have at work), with a wok burner (very high heat). The intense temperature of the wok smokes the chillies whilst crisping them, making them easy to spice grind into a smoky, hot powder. I appreciate that unless you are some kind of maniac, you probably don’t have a wok burner to hand at home? I have found the best way to do it at home is in a dry pan on a high heat on the stove top, keep the chillies moving until they start smoking, then cover with tin foil and place in a hot oven for 2-3 minutes allowing to smoke a little. Carful- if you breathe in the smoke, you will cough. I also like to use 50/50 dried birds eye chillies to dried long red chillies, this gives the chilli powder a fiery hot, smokey and sweet flavour. It’s great when added to the curry powder.

When grating the vegetables to make this fritter (the daikon and sweet potato), it’s important to julienne them evenly to ensure it all cooks at a similar rate when being deep-fried. If your knife skills are still in practice, I suggest using a papaya shredder, or something of similar function. For anyone that is unsure what a Daikon is, it’s a type of radish. It’s also known as ‘mooli’ or Oriental radish and is much larger than a normal radish, they can be found in most good Asian supermarkets with a fresh vegetable section. If grating daikon (which we are) it’s important to use it as quickly as possible to retain the crisp, crunchy freshness.

The natural sweetness of tiger prawns are a great accompaniment to this lightly curried fritter. Once our home-made curry powder is completed, the vegetables, prawns and Thai Basil are tossed through a light egg batter and deep-fried to make the fritters. This is then served with a sweet, sour and fiery hot Nham jim dipping sauce- delicious.

This recipe was adapted from something I was shown from Andy Oliver, it is in no way the same (or as good) but feel I should credit him anyway – cheers Bandy Boliver.

I think that’s enough from me for one day and I’m sure you guys want to get cooking so I’ll leave you to it.

 

Enough to satisfy two people with a light lunch:

Ingredients (leaves loads spare to use another time, scale down if you want)

(For the curry powder)

-1tbspn, black peppercorns

-3tbspn, coriander seeds

-3tbspn, cumin seeds

-1tbspn cloves

-1tbspn fennel seeds

-15, Thai cardamom pods

-15, pik kwan, stems removed

-3tbspn home made chilli powder (1tbspn dried birds eye chillies, 1tbspn dried long red chillies, follow instructions above)

-5tbspns, ground, home-made dried ginger (follow instructions above for drying)

-7tbspns, ground, home-made dried turmeric (follow instructions above for drying)

(For the Nham jim dipping sauce)

-7, peeled garlic cloves

-5, green birds eye chillies, roughly chopped

-2tbspn, coriander root, finely chopped

-3tbspn, caster sugar (might need more to taste)

-300ml, fresh lime juice (might need more/or less to taste

-150ml, fish sauce, I like the mega chef brand best (might need more/or less to taste)

-2, mandarins, juiced

(For everything else)

-6 whole tiger prawns, body shells and shit removed, tails and head still attached

-1, sweet potato, julienned or shredded

-200g, daikon, julienned or shredded

-20g Thai Basil, picked

-10g, white sesame seeds

-2, free-range eggs

-100ml sparkling water

-1tbspn, rice flour

-1pinch Malden sea salt

-2 litres, cooking oil (for deep-frying)

Method

  1. Ok so firstly let’s get the spices toasted and the curry powder made. Have all you spices separated to start, as they need to be added to the pan at different times. The ginger, turmeric and chilli powder is already good to go if you followed my instructions in the writing above. In a large flat pan toast the spices on a low heat. When toasting spices you should always heat them in terms of their size, larger spices first and for longer ( as a larger object takes longer to toast). Once a spice begins to change colour and release a fragrant smell it is ready to use. The only spices that should not be toasted according to size are peppercorns as they pop and explode, just add them at the end and let the other spices warm them through. One toasted, add the ginger, turmeric and chilli powder then spice grind together to make the curry powder.
  1. Next make the fritter, heat the oil in a deep pan to 180 degrees. In a mixing bowl whisk together   1tbspn of the home-made curry powder, 1tbspn of rice flour, 1 pinch of Malden sea salt, the sparkling water and the eggs, beat to a pale mixture then rest in the fridge for a few minutes. In another mixing bowl, combine the prawns, shredded sweet potato, daikon, sesame seeds and the Thai basil. Pour the batter over all of this then mix with your hands until everything is covered in the egg mixture.
  2. Now the fritters are ready to be cooked. However if you throw the mixture in as is, it will break up and not cook together. Use a kitchen spider (large spoon with holes it it) to gently lower handfuls of the fritter mixture into the oil, making sure that the vegetables have cooked together, holding the fritters in one piece. Cook batches of the mixture one at a time for around 2-3 minutes in the oil, moving regularly to ensure an even cook. When ready remove from oil and leave to drain on kitchen roll.
  3. Meanwhile make your Nham jim dipping sauce, fresh is always best with a lime juice based product. In a pestle and mortar, pestle the coriander root, garlic then chillies in this order to a coarse paste, using sea salt as an abrasive if necessary. Next add the caster sugar and pound for a few seconds using the sugar as a second abrasive. Lastly add the lime, mandarin juice and fish sauce to make the dipping sauce. It should taste sweet, salty, sour and hot, adjust seasoning accordingly. An exact recipe is impossible as ingredients strengths change constantly.
  4. Serve the fritters garnished with some fresh Thai Basil leaves and enjoy.

Lightly Spiced Tiger Prawn, Sweet Potato, Daikon & Thai Basil Fritter, Served With a Green Nham Jim Dipping SauceThanks very much for stopping by at ‘Articuleat’ and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

See you next time,

Eat Well,

Sebbyholmes

Thai Shallot, Chive, Ginger & smoked Salmon Roti with Peppered Coconut Cream

Thai Shallot, Chive, Ginger & smoked Salmon Roti with Peppered Coconut CreamNow I have one guilty pleasure from when I was traveling around Thailand (and it’s not what you’re thinking!), condensed milk and banana roti. It’s such a simple but addictive dish, with a crispy, buttery roti dough, wrapped around a soft banana and drowned in condensed milk- it’s a fat man’s dream.

Anywhere you travel around Thailand you’re sure to bump into a roti stand. The Thai’s have truly mastered the art of quick, flavoursome and intricate street food. If you’re there and love food, I’m sure you won’t be able to help yourself to try as much as possible. However if you see a roti stand don’t hesitate! Run at it like a seagull that’s nicked your sandwich and grab the first one you can get your hands on. Once you’ve got one don’t stray too far, if you feel like another you may have gained too many pounds to run back.

Recently I have been doing a little research into the origins of the roti dough. Besides seeing it when I was out there, I have only seen it at work. Due to this I had assumed that it was a Thai dish, however (as per usual) I was wrong.

The Roti was first introduced into Thai culture via South Asian immigrants, who borrowed the dish from Indian cuisine. Roti’s were cheap to produce and delicious to eat, so they became common form on the streets. As time passed roti popularity continued to rise, so too did the amount of roti stools. Before you knew it the roti got to where it is today. You can find it on the streets, in malls and in homes, being cooked by everyone, everywhere. Now you understand why I say run if you see one, there will be others behind you. Dommy Gonzalez gives a great insight into how the roti has spread around America in his article from ‘LA Weekly’. This is further evidence of how this gem of a dish is rapidly expanding and occurring in cultures all around the globe.

Now this amazing little dish has not just expanded in terms of popularity. You can now find an endless array of delicious fillings and coatings, both sweet and savoury. From what began as just a simple condensed milk and sugar filling, has now evolved into bananas, strawberry jam, Italian Nutella and apparently you can even get pizza toppings (not that I have seen this with my own eyes). These days anything goes really so I figured I would share a recipe with you guys to have a go yourself.

Right! History lesson over, this now brings us to my dish. I was recently lucky enough to find myself on a long weekend in the Lake District. As soon as I had a free moment I had a sudden urge to make a roti – that’s normal, right? Anyway, so I rattled around in my head and decided that a savoury roti was the way forward. I didn’t think that a condensed milk and sugar roti was going to do me any favours this close to Christmas ( I’ve already told myself, I’m not getting fat until I’m at least 30).

So, savoury it was. I managed to get some smoked salmon fillets, which were bloody awesome so I used them. Whilst writing this I also realised that I haven’t once used smoked salmon on ‘Articuleat’! This just wont do, how have I gone through nearly a year without introducing this amazing product into my repertoire? Well today, this stops, ‘Articuleat’ has found a home for this lovely ingredient, and a pretty tasty one at that.

I decided to poach my smoked salmon fillets in fresh coconut cream and a little fish stock in order to heat the fish and create a delicious sauce.  Unfortunately I couldn’t get my hands on any flowering chives for this recipe, however if I could I would have used them. The combination of coconut cream, chives and smoked salmon works really well with a crispy, buttery roti dough. You can buy coconut cream in tins, but if you’re feeling adventurous you can make it yourself. Fresh coconut cream is a far superior product to use if you have time, try it – you’ll love it. This is my version of this historical dish I hope you enjoy.

Ingredients

-5, Thai shallots, peeled and thinly sliced

-2, smoked salmon fillets, roughly 400g (if you can’t get your hands on these just use normal fillets with around 100g of sliced smoked salmon)

-2 spring onions, finely sliced

-2 garlic cloves, finely sliced

-3 coriander roots,cleaned, chopped and pounded in a pestle and mortar.

-20g, flowering chives, if you can’t get flowering chives then british chives are fine.

-4 coconuts (follow instructions to make coconut cream) or 400ml coconut cream

-200ml clear fish stock

-1tspn whole white peppercorns, toasted and ground in a pestle and mortar.

-1 large chunk of ginger, peeled and fine julienned

-50g clarified butter (for cooking the roti)

-1 1/2 tbspn thin soy sauce

(For the roti dough)

-250g, all plain flour, sieved

-1 large egg, beaten

-1 heaped tbspn coriander seeds, toasted and lightly bruised in a pestle and mortar)

- 2 tbspn unsalted butter, soft but not boiling

-1 pinch Maldon sea salt, crushed to fine powder

-1tbspn caster sugar

-200ml, warm water

-50ml milk

-olive oil for coating

Method (makes two large roti’s with a little spare dough)

1. Firstly make the roti dough. Dissolve sugar and salt in the water. Add milk, egg and melted butter. Beat the egg lightly. Add all the sieved flour and coriander seeds then Knead for around 10-15 minutes. The dough should be tacky but not sticking to the container or your hand. This dough is quite wet compared to regular bread dough. Once ready, lightly oil a bowl and place the dough upon it (it’s easier to just oil your hands at the stage), this ensures that the dough does not stick to the bowl during the resting process. Lastly cover the dough with cling film, be sure to have the cling film in direct contact with the dough to stop it crusting over, leave to rest for a minimum of 30 minutes.

2. Next make the sauce, to make you own coconut cream follow my instructions from this previous recipe. Firstly fry the garlic, coriander root and Thai shallots in a little oil until golden brown and fragrant. When ready add the fish stock, half of the coconut cream and half of the ginger, add the white peppercorns, the soy and bring to a gentle simmer. Next place the salmon fillets gently into the simmer (and the sliced smoked salmon if using) for around five minutes, then carefully remove and place to one side. Finish the sauce by adding the rest of the ginger and coconut cream, chives and spring onion. Check seasoning, bare in mind that the smoked salmon adds salt. Bring this back to a simmer, but don’t boil or the coconut cream will split from the stock, a light split is fine.

3. Now for the fun bit, cooking the roti. If you’re feeling lucky then try the traditional method by slapping out the roti dough. Lightly oil a clean surface. Form a small ball by pulling a side of the dough mix and tucking it in the middle. Rotate and repeat the pulling and tucking until the ball is smooth. It should not take more than half a minute per ball. Finally, push the dough from the bottom through the space between your thumb and your index finger. The ball should be smooth and tight and around the size of a golf ball. Tuck the rest in and pinch it together. You’ll have enough spare dough to have a few attempts so don’t worry too much about not getting it right first time.

4. Once you have a portion sized ball place it on the oiled surface. Flatten it into a rough circular shape and then gently lift the closest side to you and drag towards you, lift quickly but delicately and slap back onto the surface (the elasticity and stickiness of the dough means that it doesn’t rip too easily and it stretches bigger as you drag it). Repeat this process until the dough is roughly 2-3mm thick (the thinner the better but don’t make it too hard on yourself to lift into the pan), a few holes are fine. Alternatively you can use a rolling pin. I have watched many chefs attempt this process and none, including myself got it perfect first time, so don’t worry if it all goes a little pear shaped, it will still taste amazing.

5. Meanwhile heat half the clarified butter in a large, flat frying pan to a medium heat (the butter needs to be really hot in order to crisp the dough, but not burned). Delicately lift the dough into the pan, If it sizzles you’re doing it right. Quickly place one of the salmon fillets in the center of the dough and using a holed spoon scoop some of the vegetables out of the sauce and place on top of the salmon (be careful not to put much sauce in the dough as it could make it go soggy). Fold the dough into a rectangle shape and then flip over, adding a little more butter if needed. Fry for roughly three minutes on each side until it is golden brown and crispy on both sides. Repeat this process with the other roti and then serve upon the sauce with a cheek of lemon.

This dough can be used for sweet and savoury roti’s so use it however you like. You can also cook the dough on its own and dip it into curries.

Thai Shallot, Chive, Ginger & smoked Salmon Roti with Peppered Coconut CreamThanks very much for stopping by at ‘Articuleat’ and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

See you next time,

Eat Well,

Sebbyholmes

Salted Five Spiced Sirloin with Turmeric Potatoes & Thai Shallot Gravy

Salted Five Spiced Sirloin with Turmeric Potatoes & Thai Shallot GravyAhrrr steak, steak, steak!  Aside from winning the lottery I can think of no better way to bring in the New Year. I know that I should probably be on a health spree after the recent Christmas break, but fuck that! I like steak, so I’m eating my way into 2014 in style.

Now it’s important to pick the right cut of meat when putting a dish together. I already know that I want a tender, succulent cut to accompany the rest of the dish. Now if you don’t have much knowledge of an animal you may find this part tricky, although these days the most popular cuts of meat are generally known. However there are so many cuts of beef to choose from, 18 common ones to be precise. Now I’m sure we both don’t have the time, or the patience for me to discuss every cut in this one post, but no worries if you continue to read ‘Articuleat‘, it’ will continue to teach.

For this dish I wanted a cut of beef that I could pan fry and finish in the oven, as my hunger did not allow me the luxury of time. This leaves me three ideal choices of meat to use; fillet, rump and sirloin. Now if I could afford it I would have them all on the same plate for three meals a day, everyday. However since I’m not rich and don’t plan on becoming a fat bastard until I’m at least 30, I need to pick one? The tenderest of all beef cuts is the fillet. Taken from underneath the sirloin section of the backbone, it gets almost no exercise, making it tender and flavoursome. Despite this I have chosen sirloin for this dish, just for personal preference.

The sirloin is a very tender joint located between the fore rib and the rump on the back of the carcass. When sold as a joint it may be either on the bone, or boned and rolled, with, or without the fillet. It can be sliced into steaks which are most commonly known as entrecote, sirloin and T-bone. This is cut across the sirloin and includes the bone and the larger porterhouse, which includes both sirloin and rib. This is a prime cut for roasting or grilling.

So anyway that’s your butchery lesson for the day, on to the rest of the dish. I love making five spice, although I use a few extra spices in my recipe, I suppose I should probably call it seven spice really? Oh well, math’s never was never my stronghold.

It’s a great product to make as it can either be toasted and spice ground to a powder, ideal for seasonings and sauces. Or the spices can be placed whole into sauces, gravies and soups. This delicate blend of spices is a perfect accompaniment to a sirloin steak. It has a light aromatic flavour when infused into the gravy; this contributes to the flavour of the steak, rather than overpowering it. A few of my spices are a little hard to get hold of in normal supermarkets so don’t worry too much; If you can’t find them all, I’m sure it will still taste great no matter what. If you are committed enough to find the spices most good oriental supermarkets, or spice shops will have them, or something similar- happy hunting. For this recipe I have ground some of the spices to coat the meat and the rest are infused into the gravy. Along with the natural sweetness of the Thai shallots the gravy is light and thin, more of an aromatic broth than a gravy.

Now for the potatoes I have a few things going on. Firstly I’ve made a paste using coriander root, garlic, Thai shallots and fresh red turmeric (any excuse to get the pestle and mortar out). This is then all pounded to a paste and fried until fragrant with the potatoes after they have been cooked (otherwise the paste will burn before the potatoes have been sautéed enough). The inclusion of red turmeric is for colour, rather than taste, although it does have a slight musky, bitter flavour. Fresh turmeric, like ginger is known as a rhizome (a thick underground stem, or root). Be careful when using as it stains your hands a yellow/orange colour. I’ve made this mistake a few times and ended up having to go out in public looking like some kind of umpa-lumpa, funny but not cool.

Anyway I wish you all a great new year and I’m looking forward to seeing what 2014 has to offer. This dish was a hell of a start so onwards and upwards. Thanks for giving me a read and I’ll see you soon.

Ingredients

- 100g, whole Thai shallots, peeled

-450g, beef sirloin, fat & skin removed and rolled into large sausage shape using cling film)

-1 1/2 tbspn, whole white peppercorns, toasted & 1/2 tbspn spice ground coarsely.

- A good glug of Kecap Manis, Indonesian sweet soy

- Olive oil, for frying

- 2 potatoes, peeled and evenly diced into 1cm by 1cm cubes (I prefer Maris piper for frying)

-2 Pik Kwan (Thai peppercorn), toasted & 1 spice ground to powder

-2tspn coriander seeds, toasted & bruised

-1/2 tspn cumin, toasted, 1/4 tspn spice ground to powder

- 2 star anise, toasted & 1 spice ground to powder

- 2 bay leaves, toasted & 1 spice ground to powder

-2 pieces, cassia bark, toasted & 1 spice ground to powder

-2, bird’s eye chillies

-2tbspn, red turmeric, peeled

-3 cloves garlic, peeled

-2tspn coriander roots, roughly chopped

-30g coriander leaves, washed and picked

-Malden sea salt

-20g, unsalted butter

-400ml, beef stock

-1tbspn, sesame oil

-2tbspn, oyster sauce

Method (serves 2 with spare five/seven spice)

1. Firstly combine the powdered star anise, cassia bark, bay leaves, Pik Kwan, white peppercorns and 1tbspn of the bruised coriander seeds. The rest of the whole toasted spices can be tied in some muslin to be used later in the gravy as a kind of bouquet garni.

2.  Next take the sirloin out of the fridge and coat in a little oil, Kecap Manis and a good pinch of Malden sea salt, set aside for a few minutes and allow to reach room temperature (this relaxes the meat in preparation for frying). Pre-heat the oven to 170 degrees centigrade (150 for fan oven) Seal the meat in a pan briefly (1-2 minutes) to colour and hold in juices. When coloured, dust with the powdered five spice and then place in the oven. For this sized meat you’re looking at 12-15 minutes for rare, 15-18 for medium-rare and 20-25 for well done, allow to rest for 6-8 minutes once removed from oven.

3. Whilst the steak cooks add a little more oil to the steak pan and bring to a medium heat, fry all but 4 of the whole Thai shallots in the oil until caramelised and fragrant, then de-glaze the pan with the beef stock. Add the bouquet garni, sesame oil, oyster sauce and a pinch of salt then bring to the boil, when boiling turn down to a simmer.

4. Lastly make your turmeric potatoes. Firstly pound the coriander root, 4 Thai shallots, red turmeric, bird’s eye chillies and garlic to a coarse paste, use salt as an abrasive if necessary.  Blanch the potatoes in salted boiling water for 3 minutes, then refresh in cold water (this is just to soften them a little, not too cook them through). In a large, flat, non-stick frying pan heat a little olive oil. Fry the potatoes on a high heat, tossing regularly to get even colour on all sides of the diced potatoes. When nearly cooked throughout (around 6-8 minutes) add the butter and the paste and cook until fragrant and golden brown (around 2 minutes). When cooked remove from the heat and toss through a pinch of salt and the coriander leaves. Lastly discard the bouquet garni from the gravy then congratulations- you can eat.

Salted Five Spiced Sirloin with Turmeric Potatoes & Thai Shallot GravyThanks very much for stopping by at Articuleat and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

See you next time,

Eat Well,

Sebbyholmes

 

Have a happy fudging Christmas: fudge, three ways

Fudge BoardWell shit, once again it’s that time of year where I manage to ignore my girlfriend and family’s requests to go shopping, to the point where I only have a couple of days to do the Christmas shopping. Unfortunately, life as a chef and food blogger is not most accommodating for catching up on your Christmas shopping. Every time I have found a moment to myself, quite literally the last thing I even want to think about is Christmas shopping. For example, today (being my first day off for Christmas) would have been ideal to head off out into the rain, probably to Oxford Street and get everyone presents. However, despite the fact that even the thought of a busy shopping spree upsets me, something inside me urged me to make fudge and then write about it? Why not?

So, this year I thought “screw it” I’m going to take a stand! For all those out there in the same situation I urge you to come forward and join, I’m just making some snazzy fudge. After all, it’s the thought that counts right?

Now I can appreciate that making fudge for a present is a bit of a cop out. However, surely the same can’t be said for making three different types of fudge? Well, that’s my logic anyway. So after careful consideration (363 days to be precise) I have concluded that fudge it is. If anyone is in the same position this close to Christmas then we must lead similar lifestyles. If you’re stuck for ideas, or the most expensive flowers in the service station just won’t do this year then no fear, ‘Articuleat’ is here to save the day.

It’s quite ironic that a product accidently created in Virginia; USA, by a toffee maker’s apprentice is now going to be the saviour of my Christmas. Allegedly a toffee demonstration went wrong and it was taken off at the wrong temperature, this is also apparently where the term “to fudge something up” came from. Anyway things have come a long way since then and this fudge is purposeful.

Right then! Back to the recipe, as I said earlier we are making three different types of fudge, the first being dark chocolate and fresh orange. If you are a regular reader of ‘Articuleat’, then you already know that I like to make things from scratch, this trio of fudge certainly doesn’t break this trend. In order to get a potent orange taste to infuse into my fudge, I squeezed the juice from four oranges, then reduced it into a 100ml, concentrated juice. This was then added to my fudge along with some orange zest, the result – deliciousness.

The second fudge is white chocolate, spearmint and hazelnut. For this I had to work out the best way to infuse the spearmint into my fudge. In the end I decided to make a clear sugar syrup using caster sugar and water, when this was hot I added mint in order to capture the spearmint flavour within the syrup. Finished off with some fine julienne mint leaves and toasted hazelnuts and we’re done.

The third and final fudge is milk chocolate, raisin and toasted walnut. This is the simplest of the trio however if you have ever made fudge before you may know that white chocolate does not set as firm as others when used in fudge. Due to this I had to increase the white chocolate content to ensure that it would set correctly, I’m sure that no one will have an issue with extra chocolate?

Ingredients

(For the dark chocolate orange fudge)

-500g, caster sugar

-150g, dark chocolate, broken into small chunks (make sure it has at least a 70% cocoa solids content)

-500ml, double cram

-75g, liquid glucose

-Four oranges, keep the zest of 2 and the juice of all four

(For the white chocolate, spearmint and hazelnut fudge)

-500g, caster sugar

-350g, white chocolate, broken into small chunks

-500ml, double cream

-75g, liquid glucose

-80g fresh spearmint, 20g fine julienned, the rest for the sugar syrup

-75g, hazelnuts, toasted and skin removed

(For the milk chocolate, raisin and walnut fudge)

-500g, caster sugar

-150g, milk chocolate

-75g, liquid glucose

-75g, raisins, soaked for a few minutes in boiling water then drained thoroughly

-75g, walnuts, toasted

Method (each recipe makes around 800g of fudge)

(For the dark chocolate orange fudge)

  1. Firstly bring the orange juice to the boil and simmer until you have 100ml left in the pan. This will leave you with a concentrated orange juice, which is perfect; we want the flavour, not the liquid. Take the orange zest and blanch it in boiling water 3 times, this takes the bitterness out of the zest and makes it nice to eat.
  2.  Combine the sugar, double cream and glucose in a pan then bring to the boil on a medium heat. Be sure to stir regularly to ensure that the ingredients are mixed and not sticking to the pan. Once melted and combined, boil until the mixture reaches 118 degrees centigrade, this is the temperature that sugar needs to be at to set into fudge, no more, no less.
  3.  Lastly remove from the heat and immediately mix in the dark chocolate, the concentrated orange juice and the zest (the heat from the sugar will melt the chocolate). Pour this mixture into a tray that is lined with cling film and parchment paper then set in the fridge, should take around an hour.

(For the white chocolate, spearmint and hazelnut fudge)

  1. Firstly take 50g of sugar and melt it in a pan with 100ml of water until combined. Once hot add the 80g of fresh spearmint and simmer for a few minutes. Next remove from the heat and food process the mixture in order to extract as much mint flavour as possible, next pass through a sieve to remove the mint but keep the liquid.
  2. Combine the mint sugar syrup with the rest of the sugar; double cream and glucose in a pan then bring to the boil on a medium heat. Be sure to stir regularly to ensure that the ingredients are mixed and not sticking to the pan. Once melted and combined, boil until the mixture reaches 118 degrees centigrade, this is the temperature that sugar needs to be at to set into fudge, no more, no less.
  3. Lastly remove from the heat and immediately mix in the white chocolate, toasted hazelnuts and the julienned mint leaves. Pour this mixture into a tray that is lined with cling film and parchment paper then set in the fridge, should take around an hour.

(For the milk chocolate, raisin and walnut fudge)

  1. Combine the sugar, double cream and glucose in a pan then bring to the boil on a medium heat. Be sure to stir regularly to ensure that the ingredients are mixed and not sticking to the pan. Once melted and combined, boil until the mixture reaches 118 degrees centigrade, this is the temperature that sugar needs to be at to set into fudge, no more, no less.
  2. Remove from the heat and immediately add the milk chocolate, softened raisins and the toasted walnuts. Pour this mixture into a tray that is lined with cling film and parchment paper then set in the fridge, should take around an hour.

So there you have it, a trio of Christmas fudge. I hope that you all enjoy this recipe and if necessary, use it to sort a few people out with Christmas presents. I now have to hope that none of my family will read this blog post until after Christmas; otherwise I will probably have to make something else.

Fudge BoardThanks very much for stopping by at Articuleat and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

From ‘Articuleat’ have a very happy Christmas and a great new year,

See you next time,

Eat Well,

Sebby Holmes

 

Venison Wellington with Caramelised Red Onion Gravy, Roasted Seasonal Mushrooms & Pancetta.

Venison Wellington with Caramelised Red Onion Gravy, Roasted Seasonal Mushrooms & Pancetta.The game season is upon us, for me this means venison is back on the dinner plate. Venison used to be a strictly seasonal, expensive meat however it is now more widely available, as it’s commonly farmed. Although still at the expensive end of the meat market; it’s lean, close-textured, dark, moist meat and distinct gamey flavour is truly worth every penny.

Venison is defined as ‘large antlered game’ (funnily enough my girlfriend also refers to me by this) and therefore, as well as deer, it includes elk, caribou, moose, antelope, bison, buffalo and me. Prime roasting joints tend to come from the leg (haunch), the loin and the saddle, while the fillet or boned loin provides steaks.

Now I have been up to lots over the last few months from designing insect based menus for the London public, to helping Andy Oliver out at his new pop- up event; which you will hear about in my blog’s ‘behind the whites’ section. The past month of neglect towards ‘Articuleat’ is to be swiftly resolved. I have some great winter recipes to get you down and dirty in the kitchen during the festive season.

Now, back to the recipe. Remember if you don’t have the time or the patience to make your own puff pastry (I don’t blame you) you can buy it frozen from any good supermarket. However if you do find the time to give it a whirl (well done you) then I’m sure you will absolutely love this dish. For me, there is nothing better than making something completely from scratch, once you conquer puff pastry – you can conquer anything. If it is your first time please do let me know how it goes, I would love to know.

Right so we have Venison wellington, a deliciously rich, gamey meat wrapped within a light, fluffy, buttery puff pastry – now what next? What’s our perfect accompaniment for this tasty dish?

Yep, I’ve got it, mushrooms!! But not just any mushrooms. For a dish with as much character as this you don’t want to dress it up in crap clothes. Girolles, the Levis of the mushroom world and shitake, the Gucci. Iron these up and put them on your wellington and I assure you, it will be turning heads left, right and center.

Now for the last element to complete this delicious winter warmer, a sauce. We have buttery pastry, gamey venison, salty mushrooms; I think a light and sweet caramelised red onion gravy should bring all those flavours together. Infuse this with some smoked pancetta and you would have to be some kind of weirdo not to be able to enjoy this dish (except of course for vegetarians).

Ingredients

(For the puff pastry, makes 1.2kg)

-500g, unsalted butter

-500g, strong white flour

-2tspn, salt

-150ml, cold water

-5 egg yolks

-3tspn, lemon juice

-flour, for rolling

(For the wellington)

-600g venison haunch, rolled into a large sausage shape using cling film

-puff pastry, enough to wrap venison

-2 egg yolks, whisked to attach pastry

-a little olive oil

-Malden salt and cracked black pepper

(For everything else)

-40g, girolles, cleaned with a brush and chopped into thick chunks

-40g, shitake, cleaned and chopped into thick chunks

-60g, diced smoked pancetta

-2 cloves, garlic, diced or crushed

-2 thinly sliced red onions

-300ml, beef stock

-50g, soft brown sugar

-2 heaped tbspn, redcurrant jelly

-20ml, balsamic vinegar

-olive oil for cooking

-20g unsalted butter

Method (Serves 2, with spare puff pastry)

  1. Firstly let’s get the hard bit out the way, the puff pastry. Now follow these instructions to the word and you shouldn’t have any issues, if you do please let me know. Puff pastry is a lengthy process but once made it can be frozen for future use; I assure you quality comes in making things from scratch. Begin by unwrapping the butter (be sure to keep the wrappers) and cut off 100g of butter to use in the dough. Place the remaining butter between the wrappers and hammer it with a rolling pin until it’s about 2cm thick, roughly the same size as the wrapper and malleable. Keep this cool and aim to have it cold but pliable for rolling, not too soft (I know this is tricky but it needs to be malleable enough to roll, whilst being cold enough not to melt into the pastry).Place the flour and salt in a bowl then get your hands stuck in to rub in the butter. Mix the water, yolks and juice, add this to the bowl and gently knead into a dough. Once complete, wrap it and chill in fridge for half an hour. Next lightly flour the worktop and roll the dough out to just under 1cm thick. Place the butter slab, unwrapped and pull the sides up and over it so they overlap in the middle, and seal them together with a little water. Then do the same with the other two sides – this will completely seal the butter within the dough like a wrapped Christmas present. Lastly hammer the dough out a little with the rolling pin and roll it into a rectangle just under 1cm thick. Brush off any excess flour, fold it in by thirds (like you would a blanket), then wrap it well and chill for an hour. Lastly roll and fold it in this way five more times, spaced at one hour long intervals, use as much flour as you need to stop the butter sticking, should it burst out – but make sure to brush it off the dough when making a blanket fold. Finally wrap the dough well and use immediately or freeze for when you need it. This recipe makes more than you need, if it takes this long why not?
  2. Now that the pastry is out the way, time for the wellington. Firstly heat the oven to 180C. Unwrap the venison and cover in olive oil, salt and pepper the fry in a dry pan on a high heat briefly to seal the meat (be sure to keep it raw in the center), remove from pan and chill for 30 minutes. Roll out enough puff pastry to wrap the meat into a rectangular shape then place the venison in the center, use a little flour on the worktop if necessary. Brush the egg around the edges of the pastry and the meat, and then tightly wrap it, making sure you seal the meat within the pastry, then leave to rest for 30 minutes. Lastly brush the pastry with egg yolk and sprinkle with salt and pepper, mark the wellington with diagonal knife lines taking care not to cut through the pastry. Cook until golden and crisp (around 20-25 minutes for medium rare) then remove rest and serve.
  3. Meanwhile make the sauce. Place the butter in a tray, then melt in the oven on 180C, once hot add the pancetta and roast for 15 minutes. Next add the mushrooms and continue to roast for a further 20 minutes. At the same time fry the garlic in hot oil until golden brown and fragrant, then add the red onion and sweat (around 5 minutes). Next add the soft brown sugar and balsamic vinegar and cook until melted and beginning to caramelise. When ready add the redcurrant jelly and beef stock and continue to simmer until a light pourable consistency. Once mushrooms and pancetta is ready finish the gravy by adding the roasting juices from the tray. Serve the wellington upon the mushrooms and pancetta with a friendly dose of the gravy and enjoy.

Venison Wellington with Caramelised Red Onion Gravy, Roasted Seasonal Mushrooms & Pancetta.

Thanks very much for stopping by at Articuleat and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

See you next time,

Eat Well,

Sebby Holmes

Banana Jam with Peanut & Toasted Coconut Praline, Salted Coconut Cream and Lime

Banana Jam with Peanut & Toasted Coconut Praline, Salted Coconut Cream and LimeFunnily enough I got the inspiration to make this dish when I got chatting to a local Thai chef in Brixton. I was aimlessly walking around ‘Wing Tai’, one of my local oriental supermarkets. I was, as I find myself lots these days, lost in the weird and wonderful labyrinth of Asian produce; this must have been pretty obvious to the outside world as this guy felt the need to take time out of his own day and offer me a hand.

He asked, “What is it you’re looking for, what are you going to make?” to which I swiftly and unhelpfully replied “something that I have never made, seen, or heard of before”. To this I half expected him to instantly assume that I was a bit of a fruit loop and see himself off, however he asked, “Do you like Jam?” – “Yes” I replied (please don’t ask me to come for breakfast!!!). “Do you like bananas?” –umm… Yes” I replied (please, please, please don’t ask me to come for breakfast!!!), “how about banana jam?” – “few… I mean yes that sounds delicious”.

All jokes aside he was an extremely nice man, as he even wrote down a rough guide for me to come home and try (and if you’re reading this I would happily come for breakfast).

Now I have made many Jams in my time, however I have never heard of banana jam, this is why I thought it a perfect recipe to include on Articuleat. I love cooking things for the first time, not only do you learn a new recipe but, especially with Asian cuisine, you gain a wider perspective of certain ingredients. I have now been cooking Thai cuisine professionally for over a year and every day is a school day – exciting stuff. Saying this, I don’t think this dish could strictly be categorized as Asian (it’s more fusion), but it did find its way into my recipe book via a Thai chef and his mother’s recipe, so screw it – lets say it’s Asian.

After making this a few times I have changed the recipe slightly to ‘articuleatise’ it. He recommended using gelatin to set it (no thanks); I have used natural pectin as a setting agent. Pectin is a chemical found in fruits (predominantly apples), that can be used to set jams and jellies. As bananas contain such a small amount of pectin naturally, it is necessary to add a little more to guide it towards setting like a normal jam.

He also recommended serving it with tinned coconut cream, however here at Articuleat that just won’t do. For my recipe I have cracked and pressed my own coconut cream. This is a much lengthier process but the final product is in a league of its own. Any tinned coconut cream always has a certain aftertaste to it – this is all the preservatives that it is packed full of. If you ever find the time I recommend that you try cracking your own coconut cream.

Lastly I grated and toasted the remaining coconut flesh and included it in the peanut praline. This adds a little necessary texture to the dish. Although this is an unusual form to see these ingredients in, they compliment each other perfectly in this dish. The salted coconut cream balances out the softly sweet and sharp banana jam, all topped with a crunchy peanut praline and a squeeze of lime – perfect.

Apologies if any anonymous Thai chefs from around the Brixton area have suffered emotional trauma during the reading of this recipe – please do send me a complaint and I will reply as swiftly as possible.

Anyway, that’s enough from me for today – happy jamming.

Ingredients

(For the coconut cream)

-8 coconuts, cracked with a hammer and peeled to the flesh (if you want, drink the coconut water that is released when cracked – it’s very good for you)

-2litre, water, boiling

(For the praline)

-200g, white sugar

-100g, peanuts, toasted and semi-pounded in a pestle and mortar

-40ml, fresh lime juice

-20g, toasted coconut flesh (use coconut that has been cracked for cream)

(For the banana jam)

-1500g, ripe bananas, chopped into chunks

-60ml, fresh lime juice

-70g, unsalted butter

-1 vanilla pod, split lengthways

-1tbspn, pectin

-1000g, white sugar (light brown also works well)

(For the salted coconut cream)

-200ml, fresh coconut cream

-1tspn, white rice flour

-1 pinch Malden sea salt, crumbled as fine as possible

Method

  1. Firstly let’s make the coconut cream. Start by cracking the coconuts with a hammer and remove and discard of the outer shell. This leaves you with the inner flesh of the coconut which has an inedible skin attached to it. Using a peeler remove this skin to leave you with only the fresh, white coconut flesh. Next put this flesh through a mincer, or grate it and add to the boiling water, combine thoroughly using a stick blender for around 5 minutes. Once combined filter the liquid from the flesh by ringing it out in some muslin, or a cloth. Once separated place the liquid in the fridge and leave to cool. As it cools the cream will separate from the water, the white cream on the top is what you want. Keep the coconut water as it can be used to let out curries and soups. Any leftover coconut cream can be boiled down until it splits (cracks); this can then be used as coconut oil (coconut crack) which we will talk about another time. Once finished take some of the grated coconut left behind and toast on a medium heat in the oven, until golden brown and crunchy.
  2. Secondly make the peanut praline, this is a real simple one and only takes minutes to achieve.  Place the sugar and lime juice in a pan and melt on a medium heat, stirring constantly to ensure that it doesn’t stick to the pan. Once melted turn up the heat and continuously stir, until the mixture begins to darken and caramelise (around 3-4 minutes when boiling). Lastly add the peanuts and toasted coconut and pour onto a tray with parchment paper underneath, with a spoon spread the mixture as thin as possible and then leave in the fridge to set. Once solid, hit it with a rolling pin to break up into portion sized pieces.
  3. Now for the banana jam, you will find it much easier with a sugar/jam thermometer, however not to worry if not you will just have to keep a close eye out. Firstly add the bananas, lime juice, scraped vanilla seeds and the remaining pod and the butter to a non-stick pan. Combine as much as possible using a potato masher, cook out on a medium heat for around 7-8 minutes until the banana begins to break down and cook (keep it moving or it will stick). Next add the pectin to the sugar and combine, then pour this fast into the bananas and keep stirring. Boil to 104-105.5 degrees (jam setting temperature), if not using a thermometer then look for when the bubbles get larger, you can see the change in heat bubbles in the pan. Pour this straight in a sterelised jam jar or molds if you wish. The banana jam is great on toast or in natural yoghurt and keeps for around 5-6 months.
  4. Lastly make the salted coconut cream. Bring the cream to a simmer and then add the rice flour and whisk thoroughly to ensure there are no lumps. Bring to the boil and then turn down to a simmer and cook out the flour for a minute or two, whisking constantly. Once the coconut cream has thickened add the pinch of salt and leave to one side to cool. To plate place the banana jam upon the coconut cream and top with some peanut praline, sprinkle with toasted coconut to finish – then enjoy.

Banana Jam with Peanut & Toasted Coconut Praline, Salted Coconut Cream and LimeThanks very much for stopping by at Articuleat and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

See you next time,

Eat Well,

Sebbyholmes

Crispy Fried Coley Fish and Prawn Green Curry Noodles with Vegetables and Coconut Cream

Crispy Fried Coley Fish and Prawn Green Curry Noodles with Vegetables and Coconut CreamIf you’re anything like me you’re probably thinking ‘Coley! Why the hell is he using that?’ If you’re anything like me a day ago you’re probably thinking, ‘what the hell is a Coley fish?’ To answer both of our questions Coley is a type of Pollock, which is a member of the Cod family, most commonly sourced from the waters of the North Atlantic. With its white, flaky flesh and light, subtle flavour it’s a perfect ingredient for an Articuleat green curry – not to mention its amazing value for money.

For some reason this delicious, cheap fish has escaped my knowledge more than it has the fishing net, as I was led to believe from my local fish monger that it is an extremely popular fish. Well that explains it! I’ve obviously been walking around with my eyes shut for the past 23 years.

Green curry in Thailand is referred to as ‘kaeng khiao wan’, this essentially means sweet green curry (the spelling of this changes with many translations, this is down to the nature of Thai translation, as their words do not always exactly match ours meaning for meaning).

Traditionally a green curry is as hot as, or hotter than a red curry, with a sweet and salty balance. However, here at Articuleat I like to season my green curry using no palm sugar, I then let it out using a mixture of prawn stock and fresh coconut cream to create a naturally sweet and creamy curry consistency. By making a light prawn stock using the heads and shells of the prawns I can add a delicate, fishy sweetness to this curry which, for me, is a great way to eat it.

Now if you have never made a curry paste from scratch before you are in for a treat. Whatever anyone says I stand by the simple fact that a Thai curry paste made at home, in a pestle and mortar is a far superior product – once you get it right you will slap yourself for buying the preserved, old, flat pastes that can be found in major supermarkets. Get yourself to a good oriental supermarket (in London, Chinatown is a great location to shop the ingredients you’ll need) and you will find all the fresh, Asian produce you need to make an authentic curry paste.

If you would like to find out a little more about making your own curry pastes check out what Andy Oliver has to say about it – He has spent many years cooking and developing Thai cuisine and has a worthwhile perspective on making your own curry pastes.

Now making a good curry paste from scratch is no easy task and take my word for it, be careful. A few years ago if I was reading these words I wouldn’t have listened – but let me tell you now, a face full of pounded chillies is not an experience that I would wish upon even my worst enemies.

Making a paste involves a therapeutic process of pounding each ingredient to a smooth paste individually, then pounding them all together again to make the finished product. It’s a simple but lengthy process which adds a quality to the final product that can be tasted. It takes a lot of patience and an attitude to make things correctly and you will be chowing down on you very own fresh Thai green curry in no time. Right anyway, lets get cooking.

(Serves 2, takes 2-2 ½ hours with plenty of spare curry paste)

Ingredients

(For the green curry paste)

In order to make it a simple process to make in the kitchen I have measured the ingredients within the same sized mug. As long as the quantities are the same in comparison it will work fine.

- ½ mug, fresh birds eye chillies, stems removed

- ¼ mug, fresh long green chillies, stems and seeds removed, thinly sliced,

- 1 ½ mugs, banana shallots, peeled, roughly chopped (use Thai shallots if possible)

- 1 ¼ mugs, peeled garlic

- 1 mug, peeled lemongrass, topped and tailed, outside shell removed, sliced into small chunks

- ¼ mug, galingale, peeled and cut into small chunks

- ¼ mug coriander roots, cleaned and finely sliced

- 4 chunks, fresh red turmeric, peeled (watch the hands, this stuff stains)

- 4 chunks, gra chi, peeled and roughly chopped

-1 tbsp, roasted gapi paste (fermented shrimp paste)

-1tbsp, whole white peppercorns, lightly toasted in dry pan

- 2 tsp coriander seeds, lightly toasted in dry pan

- 2 tsp cumin seeds, lightly toasted in dry pan

- 2 pieces, mace, lightly roasted in pan

- Malden sea salt

(For the Curry)

-3 small fillets of Coley fish, roughly 300g, 2 fillets left whole, 1 skinned and chopped into chunks

-200g, fresh prawns, heads, shells and shit sack removed (keep heads to one side to make stock with)

- 150g, thick rice noodles, cooked according to instructions on packet then refreshed in cold water

-80g, baby corn, sliced into thin roll-cuts

- 50g, white daikon, peeled and sliced into thin roll-cuts and braised in water until softened (about 5 minutes)

-3, fresh long red chillies, sliced into roll cuts

-3, fresh long green chillies, sliced into roll cuts

-50g, green beans, topped and tailed, cut into 2cm long chunks

-150g, green curry paste

- 300ml, prawn stock (made from prawn heads)

- 150ml, coconut oil (crack)

- 150ml, coconut cream

-3 pieces gra chi, peeled and thinly sliced

-60g, Thai basil, washed and picked

-60g, coriander, washed and picked

- Fish sauce, to taste

- A little cooking oil

- 1 cheek of lime, for garnish

-Malden sea salt

Method

  1. Firstly make the green curry paste. Using a pestle and mortar individually pound up all the fresh ingredients separately until they are combined into one complete paste. For example start with the lemongrass, as it is tough – chop it into small chunks to make it easier on yourself then pound using a pestle and mortar until all is mixed into one paste. Next pound the galangal, as it is also tough, using the same process, then the chillies, garlic etc. Once all are pounded individually, combine them in the pestle until one paste.
  2. Meanwhile toast the spices; however these all toast at different rates so start with the coriander seeds, moving constantly, as soon as they start to smoke a little add the mace and cumin. Keep moving these for one more minute and then add the whole white peppercorns and remove from the heat. The heat from the hot spices is enough to toast the white peppercorns, if they remain on the heat they will pop and explode. Once toasted, spice-grind these spices to a fine powder and pound them into your curry paste. Keep pestle and mortaring away until you are left with a slightly moist, slightly coarse paste, with no identifiable chunks of any ingredients (everything should be equally pounded into a paste – no lumps)
  3. Right now that’s the hard bit done, now onto the curry. Firstly get all the prawn heads that you collected and add them to 320ml of water. Bring this to the boil and then turn down to a simmer, make sure to skim the scum off the surface of the water, simmer for 20 minutes and then strain. Meanwhile heat the coconut oil in a wok, when bubbling, add the green curry paste and keep stirring regularly until paste begins to split like scrambled eggs – you will also notice that the smell of the ingredients changes from raw, to fragrant. At this point add a little fish sauce and allow to cook into the paste for one minute (don’t add too much as it is strong and you can always add, but never take away)
  4. Now it’s time to let the curry out. Add 200ml of the prawn stock and 100ml of the coconut cream, the daikon, green beans and baby corn. Stir to combine and then cover and bring to a simmer, cook out for around five minutes until all vegetables are cooked.
  5. Next drop in the skinless chunks of Coley fish, prawns and the noodles and carefully fold in, at this point the curry would have thickened a little, so finish off the remaining prawn stock and another 50ml of coconut cream. Cook out for two minutes until fish is cooked then add Thai basil, green and red chilli roll-cuts, fish sauce to taste and gra chi, fold these ingredients in carefully as you don’t want to destroy the fish.
  6. Meanwhile in a small frying pan heat a couple of tablespoons of cooking oil, Rub a pinch of Malden salt on either side of both whole Coley fillets, then place them skin side down in the hot pan. Cook for around 3 minutes on the skin side (until golden brown and crispy) and then finish under a grill for roughly 2 minutes, until fish is piping hot throughout with no clear flesh.
  7. Serve the curry in a bowl with the crispy pan-fried fillet on top to garnish (this gives a lovely crunchy texture to go with the otherwise soft green curry noodles). Finish the left over coconut cream by drizzling over the top, then garnish with coriander and a cheek of lime. The curry should be thick enough to coat the noodles, rich, creamy, salty, hot and fishy (the magic is in the balance).

I eat this with chopsticks, however traditionally this would be enjoyed with a fork and a spoon – enjoy it however you like.

Crispy Fried Coley Fish and Prawn Green Curry Noodles with Vegetables and Coconut CreamThanks very much for stopping by at Articuleat and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

See you next time,

Eat Well,

Sebbyholmes

Tomato, Mascarpone & Chorizo Pureed with Chicken, Herb Potatoes and Butter Beans

Tomato, Mascarpone & Chorizo Pureed with Chicken, Herb Potatoes and Butter BeansFor the last few weeks I have been waking up with chorizo on the mind – Weird! I know, however with the recent heat wave it’s a necessary ingredient to compliment the sunshine (well – for me anyway).

I have had an incredibly busy few weeks at the begging bowl recently, so I apologise for my brief break in content. I sometimes wonder if I am working in a small Thai restaurant in Peckham, or cooking for tourists on the busy streets of Bangkok- where do all the people come from?

Anyway back to my dish. The chosen flavour combinations are that of a traditional Italian meal, fresh, vibrant and bloody tasty. The key to this dish is simple complexity, think about every cooking stage and ingredient as part of a story, which all result in a deliciously happy ending. Each process adds something to the dish which contributes to the tale.

I decided to use the natural fat from the chorizo to roast my tomatoes as the infusion of flavour acts as nothing but a benefit when pureeing the two with mascarpone. It is also a must to use vine cherry tomatoes as, when roasted the flesh steams within the skin creating a sharp, sweet flavour making them a perfect addition to this smoky, creamy purée. Another little trick to retain the strong flavour of the chorizo is to add it to a sizzling hot tray straight out the oven, this will cause the meat to instantly release its fat (a suspicion of oil can be coated around the chorizo to help it out, however the less olive oil the better – we want to taste the chorizo fat). Then place the tomatoes in, still attached to the vine, vine side down in the chorizo fat then roast. This adds an amazing zingy freshness to the dish which cannot be obtained through only using the tomato. If you have never done it before, (I hadn’t until recently) hold the vine to your nose and sniff – it has an amazing smell which you would not have expected from something so commonly discarded as waste.

This recipe consists of some simple elegant flavours that, to me have to be eaten in the sunshine. If you are not fortunate to find yourself in this position, then shut your eyes and allow the taste to whisk you away to somewhere hot (or just forget about that crap and enjoy your dinner). That’s enough from me for now so read on and I hope you enjoy my recipe, as always I love getting feedback so please don’t hesitate to leave a comment or ask any questions.

(Serves 2, takes 30-40 minutes with spare herb oil)

Ingredients

-2 chicken breasts

-200g, chorizo, diced and lightly coated in olive oil

-250g, vine cherry tomatoes, on the vine

-60g, mascarpone cheese

-2 potatoes, diced into 1cm/1cm cubes

-25g, coriander, roughly chopped

-25g, mint, roughly chopped

-25g, basil, roughly chopped

-70g, white butter beans

- 1 garlic clove, peeled

-100ml, olive oil

-1 pinch Maldon sea salt

-1 pinch cracked black peppercorns

-20g, unsalted butter

Method

1. Firstly place a pyrex tray in a hot oven, pre-heated to 200 degrees. When hot, carefully remove from the oven and place the chorizo in the hot tray, then return to the oven for 2 minutes (this will render the fat from the chorizo so less oil can be used Remove from the oven once more and place the tomatoes into the hot fat, vine side down (to infuse the mixture with the freshness of the tomato vine). Lastly place the chicken breasts into the hot fat, cover with tin foil and return to the oven for a further 15 minutes. Lastly remove one last time, flip the chicken breasts, remove the tin foil and return to the oven for 5 minutes – check the chicken is piping hot throughout before serving.

2. Meanwhile make the herb potatoes. Bring a pan of water with a pinch of salt to the boil then turn down to a simmer. Place the diced potatoes in the water to blanch for 3 minutes, remove from the heat and refresh in cold water to stop the cooking process. Next heat a little oil on a high heat in a large base, non-stick frying pan, when hot add the potatoes and continue to move regularly until they start to turn golden brown (roughly 8-10 minutes). Once they are starting to colour toss with the butter, mint and basil until all potatoes are coated. Remove from heat.

3. For this dish the butter beans are to be cooked in coriander oil as the two flavours infuse in the pan, creating a great contribution to this dish. In a food processor add the salt, pepper, coriander, garlic 100ml olive oil the blitz until combine into a single mixture. Then heat a little of the oil (save some for a garnish) on a medium heat, not high or you will brown the coriander, when hot coat the butter beans in the herb oil in the pan then remove.

4. Lastly, make the puree. Take the tomatoes off the vine and add to a food processor with the chorizo and the mascarpone, then combine to a puree. The result will be a sweet, smoky, salty, creamy puree that is irresistible. Once complete place the puree on a plate with the herb potatoes and butter beans on top. Finish with the chicken breast, a good dollop of herb oil and some fresh herb leaves as a garnish – then enjoy.

Tomato, Mascarpone & Chorizo Pureed with Chicken, Herb Potatoes and Butter BeansThanks very much for stopping by at Articuleat and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

See you next time,

Eat Well,

Sebbyholmes

Smooth Stir-Fried Chicken, Chilli jam and Green Mango Hot/Cold Salad

Smooth Stir-Fried Chicken, Chilli jam and Green Mango Hot/Cold SaladSo far, a few of my recipes have been inspired by my time at the begging bowl, as I have just reached the end of a seventy hour week in the kitchen, this week is no exception.

Despite being worked like a dog I remained loyal to Articuleat and squeezed in a cheeky recipe at work. This is quite an intricate dish to pull off but well worth the effort. I have always liked the idea of a hot and cold stir-fried salad, so I created this dish with a little inspiration from this thought.

In Thailand there are two types of chilli jam that are commonly eaten; grilled or deep-fried. For this dish I have chosen the latter, as it works as a rich base for this amazing salad.

Deep-fried chilli jam is an amazing product, it can be let down with stock or coconut cream to create rich salad dressings, glazes and sauces – however, it is not the easiest thing to make. It involves a lengthy, yet simple process of slicing, frying, drying and then combining with palm sugar, tamarind and fish sauce. To get the best results you need to cook the deep-fries individually as each vegetable cooks at a different rate.

The key to making an excellent deep-fried chilli jam comes in the consistency of the deep-fried ingredients. Every ingredient needs to be sliced wafer thin in order for them to cook at an even rate. A light golden crisp on the garlic, shallots, ginger, chillies and prawns comes together to create a rich, smoky, spicy base for the chilli jam. It is incredibly important to have a sharp knife in order to slice these ingredients thin enough. Slicing and cooking deep fries is a difficult game to get right as each stage takes a long time. Bear in mind that it can also go epically wrong at any moment if the oil gets too hot. – The last thing that you want is to burn your deep-fries (or fry your hands).

Although it takes a little effort to get the chilli jam made, you will certainly be pleased to have it in the kitchen. The palm sugar and oil act as a preservative, giving the jam a longer shelf life.

Many of the strange ingredients that are included in this recipe can be sourced from oriental supermarkets. The majority can also be found in most large supermarkets. Here at Articuleat I like to keep you on your toes, trust me once you have tried this dish you will run a marathon to have it on your plate again.

Anyway that’s enough from me for today and I hope you enjoy the recipe.

(Serves 2, takes 1 ½ hours, with plenty of spare jam)

Ingredients

(For the chilli jam)

-200g banana shallots, peeled and thinly sliced

-200g garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced

-1 knob of ginger, peeled and julienned

-100g dried long red chillies

-50g, dried prawns

-2 tspn gapi paste (fermented shrimp paste), roasted in tin foil on low heat until smelly

-60g palm sugar, roughly chopped

-100ml fish sauce

-100ml tamarind water (buy in packs and soak yourself)

-1 litre cooking oil

(For the stir-fry salad)

-2 chicken breasts, roughly chopped

-40g green beans, topped & tailed, halfed

-40g basil, washed and picked

-40g green mango, peeled and julienned

-40g ong choi (morning glory), roughly chopped

-2 pinch deep-fried garlic

-2 pinch deep-fried shallot

-20g coriander, washed and picked

-200ml chicken stock

-1 fresh long red chilli, thinly sliced into chilli’os

-1 pinch caster sugar

-1 pinch ground white peppercorns

Method

  1. Begin by deep-frying your chilli jam ingredients. Begin with the shallots as these have the highest moister content and therefore take the longest to complete. To do this, heat the oil to a high heat in a large wok (to test that the oil is hot enough for frying drop a few shallots into the oil – if they float and bubble it is ready). Using a fork stir the shallots in the oil making sure they cook evenly. When they are golden brown remove from the hot oil and drain on kitchen paper. To ensure no deep-fries are stuck together, pick them apart using two forks. Repeat this process with the garlic, ginger, dried prawns and the dried red chillies (bare in mind that the red chillies and prawns take less time as they have a low moister content).
  2. Once all the deep-fries are cooked take a pinch of crispy garlic and shallots and put them to one side for a garnish later. Using a food processor combine all the deep-fried ingredients with half the oil that was used for cooking (be sure to let the oil cool before using). Once combined place on a low heat and add the palm sugar and fish sauce. Keep stirring until the sugar caramelises, causing the jam to thicken and clump together. Lastly remove and add the tamarind water – the mixture should be sweet, salty, sour and hot, the magic is in the balance.
  3. Now that the chilli jam is made its time for the easy bit, making the stir-fry. In a hot wok heat a little of the excess oil from deep-frying (this can be kept as fragrant oil to cook with in the future). Throw in the chicken and wok until browned and hot throughout. Next throw in the green beans and morning glory and toss in the juices, then add the chicken stock. Once hot, add a heaped tablespoon of the fried chilli jam and toss – once combined, this will create a thick, flavoursome sauce that coats the stir-fry. Finish by adding the caster sugar and white pepper, then remove from the heat.
  4. Now for the cold ingredients. Toss through the basil, coriander and fresh red chilli and place on a plate. Finally garnish with the green mango, a little deep-fried shallot and garlic, then enjoy.

Smooth Stir-Fried Chicken, Chilli jam and Green Mango Hot/Cold SaladThanks very much for stopping by at Articuleat and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

See you next time,

Eat Well,

Sebbyholmes

Thai Infused Sticky Pork Ribs with Lime & Coriander

Thai Infused Sticky Pork Ribs with Lime & CorianderIf I was told that the world will end tomorrow I would have one thing on my mind, “shit! What am I going to eat for dinner?” One of the ingredients racing through my mind that had to be eaten one more time would be sticky pork ribs. Pork being the most widely eaten meat in the world, I’m sure that I’m not alone in thinking this recipe is worthy of a last supper.

I happened to have a little spare kecap manis (Indonesian sweet soy) leftover from a previous recipe, so I used it as a base for my rib marinade. Lemongrass, fresh chillies, white peppercorns and kaffir lime leaf all come together to make this marinade a Thai sensation.  The inclusion of all these typically Thai ingredients gives the rib meat a flavour balance consisting of sweet, salty and hot that is to die for – if you are anything like me and my flat mate you will keep eating until it hurts.

Now first things first, what are all the different cuts of meat that come from a pork rib? If you are anything like me you probably assume that a pork rib is a pork rib, which change in size as they follow the spine. However this is just a milestone in the labyrinth that is pork rib cuts. So let me squeeze it into a nutshell for you so we all have a clearer understanding for the future.

Right, so pigs have fourteen rib bones attached to their spine, which most popularly are split into four cuts of meat; baby-back ribs, spare ribs, St Louis cut ribs (spare baby-back ribs) and rib tips.

Starting from the top are the baby-backs, closest to the back bone. These are distinguishable by their curved shape and small bone. The meat found at the top of these ribs is said to be the most tender. As you move further down the spine the ribs become larger, flatter and wider with more meat between each rib – these are known as the spare ribs. There are endless ways to order this cut of meat e.g. 3 & up, 4 & over, this is just butcher slang for the weight of a cut of spare ribs (you still with me?).

We then come to the spare baby-back ribs. These are not the same as baby back ribs, nor do they necessarily come from young tender pigs. These are spare ribs made smaller by removing the rib tips (which can be eaten as small, roughly three centimeter long bones). These are more commonly known as St. Louis cut ribs, nonetheless some butchers call them baby spareribs to capitalise on the popularity of baby back ribs. Anyway lecture over and hopefully, as I did, we have all learned something new about pork ribs.

For this dish I used a whole rack of pork ribs straight from the abattoir for me and my flat mate to pig out on (excuse the pun). Now the meat from a rib is subject to lots of movement during life, as a result of the animal breathing. For this reason if you throw them straight onto a barbecue, eating them will resemble chewing the grip off of a tennis racket. Unless this is your thing? We will try and avoid this by cooking the ribs low and slow until they are tender enough to melt in your mouth.

That’s enough from me for today so get stuck in and enjoy your dinner.

(Serves 2-3 people, takes 3 hours with minimal effort)

Ingredients

-1 rack, pork ribs

-300ml, kecap manis (Indonesian sweet soy) found in most oriental supermarkets and large supermarkets).

-1 stick, lemongrass, sliced wafer thin

-2 fresh, long red chillies, thinly sliced

-2 fresh long green chillies, thinly sliced

- 1 fresh birds eye chilli, thinly sliced

-2 kaffir lime leaf, thinly sliced, stems removed

- 2 tbsp, white peppercorns, spice grinded or pestle and mortared to a powder

-2tbsp, cumin seeds, spice grinded or pestle and mortared to a powder

-1 fresh lime

-1 handful (roughly 75g) coriander, washed and picked

Method

  1. This is the beauty of cooking ribs in this way, it takes minutes to throw together so all you have to do is wait for the magic to happen.  Firstly pre heat your oven to 180 degrees. Whilst that heats, make the marinade by combining the kecap manis, lemongrass, kaffir lime, chillies, cumin and white peppercorns into one mixture.
  2. Next coat the ribs in the marinade, using your hands to rub all the meat with the mixture. Now at this stage if you are prepared the meat can be left in the fridge (ideally for 6 hours) to marinate. However if you are hungry, cover them in tin foil and put them straight in the oven, cook for 2 ½ to 3 hours until the meat is tender and falling off the bone.
  3. If you are barbecuing, the ribs can be taken straight out of the oven and placed on the barbecue grill to colour, basting regularly with the leftover marinade. If not, place the ribs on a plate and garnish with lime wedges and coriander. These ribs are great served with some steamed jasmine rice.

Thai Infused Sticky Pork Ribs with Lime & CorianderThanks very much for stopping by at Articuleat and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

See you next time,

Eat Well,

Sebbyholmes