Sunday, October 31, 2010

Romania - Mititei Sausages

These homemade sausages are usually cooked on an outside grill but since it's freezing here I cooked mine in the oven.


* 8oz lamb mince
* 8 oz beef mince
* 1/2 onion, finely chaopped
* 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
* 1 tbls olive oil
* 1 tsp salt
* 2 tsp baking soda
* 1 tsp paprika
* 1 tsp cayenne pepper

Put all the ingredients in a mixing bowl

Using your hands, mush all the ingredients together combining them well.

It should look like this

Form the mixture into rough sausage shapes and place on an oven tray sprayed with oil so they don't stick.

I cooked them in the oven for 15 minutes on Gas Mark 6, drained the excess fat off then cooked for another 10 minutes.

Cut up and serve hot with mustard.

They were really good, especially with mustard. They'd be great in summer cooked on the barbecue. I love how easy they are to make. They taste nicely hot from the peppers. I'll definitely make these again.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Peru - Picarones

Picarones are fried doughnuts of pumpkin and sweet potato sold in the streets of Peru. They seem unusual but I'm looking forward to trying them!


* pumpkin
* sweet potatoes
* 1 tsp cinnamon
* 1 tsp cloves
* 1 tbls yeast
* 1 tbls sugar
* 1 egg
* 2 cups of flour
* 1 tbls molasses

Cut the sweet potato and pumpkin into chunks. Cook in a pan of boiling water with the cloves and cinnamon.

When they are soft, drain and remove the cloves. Add the molasses and then mash thoroughly.

In a bowl add the yeast and sugar to half a cup of warm water. Let sit for a minute then add the egg and mashed vegetables. Mix well.

Now add the flour a bit at a time and continue mixing until you have a stretchy but still sticky dough.

Heat some oil in a pan until hot enough to fry. Dip your fingers in cold water and form the dough into a rough circle. Fry until golden brown turning once. Drain on kitchen paper.

Serve in a bowl drizzled with syrup of your choice.

They were suprisingly delicious. They had a lovely spicy sweet flavour and were very fluffy and light in texture. Not what I expected at all. I bet even my kids would eat vegetables this way!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Brunei - Beef Rendang

This recipe is handy, I've got some grated coconut going out of date this month in my cupboard! I feel so frugal.


* 3/4 cup of grated coconut
* 2 chili peppers
* 4 shallots
* 2 inch piece of ginger
* 2 inch piece of galangal
* 2 sticks of lemongrass
* 1/2 tsp tumeric
* stewing beef
* 1 1/2 cups coconut milk
* 1 cup water
* 2-3 kaffir lime leaves
* 2 tsp sugar
* 1-2 tsp salt
* small piece of tamarind paste

Dry fry the coconut in a wok until it's golden brown.

Let it cool and then grind it in a mortar to make a finer ground coconut.

Put the chopped chilis, shallots, ginger, galangal, lemongrass and the turmeric into a blender. Add some of the coconut milk to help it blend if needed.

Blend it into a paste.

Cut the beef into strips and put it in the wok.

Add the paste.

Add the coconut milk, water and tamarind paste. Stir well. Bring to the boil and then simmer for about an hour.

Add the grated coconut, chopped kaffir lime leaves, salt and sugar. Stir and cook for a further 2-3 minutes.

Serve with boiled rice.

It was really aromatic and had so many flavours when I tasted it. It was spicy but also really creamy because of the coconut milk. The grated coconut gave it a nice crunchiness too. I'm often put off recipes like this because they have so many ingredients, it's well worth the effort though. Delicious!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

UK - Steak and Kidney Pie

It was tought to decide what to make from my own country. Steak pie seems very british to me and I've never made one with kidney before. Mostly because they look so gross!


* 300 grams of puff pastry
* 1 egg plus 1 egg yolk
* 2 tbls of sunflower oil
* 700 grams of beef
* 200 grams of lamb kidney
* 1 onion
* 30 grams of plain flour
* 850 ml of beef stock
* worcestershire sauce
* salt and pepper

Heat the oil in a pan while you dice the beef. Add the beef to the pan and seal it.

When the beef is browned, remove it and set aside.

Next, cut the kidneys into small bite-size pieces. Even though I'm not keen on handling the kidneys they do have a lovely glossy shine and nice shape to them.

Add the kidney to the same pan you cooked the steak in, then add a chopped onion and cook for 3-4 minutes.

Add the beef back to the pan and stir well.

Now add the flour and stir so it coats the meat and kidney well. This will help thicken the pie's gravy.

Pour in the stock and bring to the boil. Simmer for an hour, adding more stock if needed.

Add a dash of worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper and stir in.

Tip the meat into an oven-proof dish.

Roll out the pastry for the pie lid. Place it over the dish and press down the edges. Mix the egg and yolk and brush the pastry.

Bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes on Gas mark 7.

The steak and kidney was really delicious. It's definitely a winning combination. On reflection puff pastry isn't my favourite pie topping but it was still good. All in all, well worth the ordeal of cutting up the kidneys!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Egypt - Ful Medames

This is a breakfast dish from Egypt using fava beans, that's broad beans to us Brits. I've never had beans for breakfast so I decided to give it a go!


* 2 cups of fava/broad beans
* olive oil
* 1 lemon
* 3 garlic cloves
* 1 tsp chili flakes
* 1 tsp cumin

Cook the beans in boiling water for 5-10 minutes.

Drain and set aside. Heat 1 tbls of olive oil in a pan. Add the chili flakes, garlic and cumin. This smells fantastic while it's cooking. Stir for a couple of minutes.

Stir in the beans and make sure they're coated well by the oil and spices.

Squeeze in the juice of the lemon and stir well. Serve in a bowl and eat!

This was another really simple yet really tasty dish. It was so spicy it left my lips tingling but it didn't ruin the flavour of the beans. It's good for breakfast and I'd eat it for any meal. Delicious!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Vietnam - Bánh Mì Sandwich

I found this recipe on a site listing the best street foods in the world. It looks great and I love trying new sandwich fillings.


* A petit baguette or portion of a large one
* Mayonnaise
* Soy sauce
* Spiced cooked chicken (or any spiced cooked meat)
* Cucumber
* Coriander
* Jalepeno pepper
* Radishes (recipe actually wanted daikon but this was as close as I could get)

Cut open the baguette lengthways and spread mayonnaise generously on one side.

Pour some soy sauce on the other side of the baguette.

Put sliced cucumber on one side and the chicken (or your choice of meat) on the other side.

Add sliced radishes and chopped coriander.

Add as many slices of jalepeno pepper as you like.

Put the halves of baguette back together and cut in half to serve.

Yum! It was very tasty. The salty soy sauce was a really nice addition to the sandwich and the mayonnaise stopped the peppers from getting too hot. A really nice balance in a sandwich.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Papua New Guinea - Bully Beef Casserole

I love recipes with only a few ingredients and these are all store cupboard ingredients too, even better. Plus I love corned beef, I know it's not prime meat cuts but it's so tasty!


* Rice

* Can of chopped tomatoes

* Can of corned beef

* Can of cream of coconut

Cook the rice in some boiling water for 10-15 minutes until almost soft.

Put half of the rice in an oven-proof dish or bowl.

Spread half the canned tomatoes over the rice.

Spread half the corned beef over the canned tomatoes.

Now do another layer of each using up all the rice, tomatoes and corned beef.

Now pour the coconut cream over the casserole. (I almost didn't want to do this, I've had bad experiences with adding coconut cream to things. I did it though, just for the sake of the blog!).

Put it in the oven on Gas Mark 6 for 25-30 minutes or until it's well heated through.

Spoon into a bowl and serve.

The smell of the casserole when it came out of the oven was awful, all I could smell was warm coconut and it wasn't very appetitising at all. I bravely tried it though and it was fantastic, really delicious. The coconut cream makes the saltiness of the corned beef more pronounced somehow, I really liked it. Easy to make and ingredients that will keep in the cupboard for ages!
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