main dish

Master stock soy sauce beef ribs

Soy sauce beef ribs

Yes, yes, beef ribs again. I’m telling you – it’s going to be a thing if it isn’t already.

I cooked this dish on two separate occasions. The first time, I wasn’t intending to blog it. But as soon as I ate it, my head went, “This is so yum!” so I had to cook it again to take photos. 🙂

And it was an easy process because I just poached the ribs in a soy sauce master stock. Do you have a master stock? They are the best. If you’re thinking, “What’s a master stock?” it’s a flavoured liquid that’s used to repeatedly poach/braise food. Instead of discarding it after cooking, it’s used again and again, picking up more flavour each time.

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Lamb shanks with quinces and chickpeas

Lamb shanks with quince and chickpeas

I’m in Motherland 1 (NZ) at the moment for family stuff, with Bro and I flying into Auckland yesterday. The parents picked us up from the airport, and it wasn’t long before the fussing started.

“Did you bring a coat?

It’s really cold here.

Where’s your coat?

No, it’s really cold. Why didn’t you bring a coat?” (This last question to Bro – I did bring my coat, cutting out 200% of the fussing.)

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Pressure cooker beef ribs with a sticky sauce

Beef ribs

I’m really into beef and lamb ribs lately. Whenever I’ve seen them at restaurants, I’ve *had* to order them.

But since they’re not as popular as pork ribs, they’re not as readily available to buy raw. So when I saw beef ribs at the butcher last weekend, I snapped some up.

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Pork chops roasted with apples and beer

Pork with apples and beer

Uuuuugh autumn. Winter. Bleh.

Really, about the only good thing that comes with this time of year is apples. I really like apples, though I am quite particular about the types that I’ll eat (it’s a short list: Granny Smith, Pink Lady, Jazz).

But yup, apples are the only good thing. That’s about it. There’s nothing else.

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Chinese Roast Pork Belly *

Pork Belly

Happy Roast Pork Belly Day!

Okay, so it’s actually Valentine’s Day, but c’moooooon. Roast Pork Belly Day is about as arbitrary, right?

Besides, Valentine’s Day is completely wasted on me. I’m not into getting flowers (they die… and I can buy my own), or chocolates (I only really like plain dark chocolate… and I can buy my own), or jewellery (I don’t like gold or diamonds… and I can buy my own).

You can deduce a couple of things from that.

1: I don’t like receiving gifts. (Though I appreciate the thought and all.)
2: I’m terribly unromantic.

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Slow roasted lamb

Slow roasted lamb

As long as you’re prepared, a slow roasted lamb leg is the easiest thing in the world.

And prepared means – a solid five hours.

But as long as you have that, it’s easy as. To prepare the leg, all I did was score the skin, rub salt and oil over it, and then it went into the oven on top of a bed of rosemary and chopped onions.

Five torturous hours later, as the house filled with the scent of gently roasting lamb, it was ready.

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Rabbit Pie

Sponsored by Nuffnang and Prahran Market.

After my Prahran market visit the other week, I was all inspired by the produce available there. In particular, the rabbits from the John Cester Poultry and Game stall caught my eye and had me dreaming of a hearty flakey pie stuffed full of a savoury bunny and vegetable mixture.

With that in mind, I made a return visit to the market to pick up ingredients – a couple of rabbits and assorted vegetables.

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Pressure cooker black bean spare ribs

My mum and I cook completely different meals. Growing up, dinner almost always consisted of steamed rice, two or three accompanying dishes, and Chinese soup. When I think about it, my mum has quite an amazing repertoire of dishes in her memory. She can churn out tons of things in her sleep – all Cantonese home cooking and food that you will rarely find at restaurants. Interestingly, it’s also the kind of food that I don’t cook for guests, because I associate it with family eating. Like it’s too simple to serve to other people. Weird right? It’s a bit silly because although it’s mostly simple food, Cantonese home cooking is delicious.

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Sausage making

This winter I found myself hands deep in a big bowl of raw meat. It all started last year, with a passing comment from my friend Maztech. She casually mentioned that her mother makes sausages every winter. And while it was just a passing remark, it got me all excited.

“I want in! Can she show me? I want to make sausages!”

And that’s how I ended up with 10 kgs of sausages. It’s also why I have sausages currently hanging in the spare room.

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