Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Chicken Drumsticks in Baked Beans Gravy

A perfect healthy dish for a cool autumn or winter day which is rich in fiber.  Most ingredients can be found in a well-stocked kitchen.  One just need to buy the chicken drumsticks in the nearby supermarket.  Baked beans lovers will definitely love this dish!

Ingredients (serves 4):
8 chicken drumsticks, skinless
1 tbsp flour
1-2 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, to be peeled and cut into wedges
1 pip garlic, to be peeled and crushed
1 bay leaf
1 tin (400 ml) baked beans
1 tin (400 ml) chopped tomatoes
salt & ground black pepper to taste

Coat chicken drumsticks in flour and leave aside.

Heat olive oil in a pan over medium/high heat.  Add chicken drumsticks and brown all sides. Remove to an ovenproof pot.

Add onion wedges to same pan and stir-fry for a few minutes.  Then, add crushed garlic and stir-fry for two minutes.  Lastly, add bay leaf, baked beans and chopped tomatoes.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Transfer to ovenproof pot and put on lid.  Bake in a preheated fan oven at a temperature of 190° C for about 35 minutes.  Once done, serve hot with baguette slices.

Bon Appetit!

Putenfleisch Pudding (Turkey Meat Pudding)

I prepared this simple comfort food for our younger son's lunch today.  The ingredients for the batter, which is similar to those of Yorkshire Pudding, is poured over the meat and baked in a hot oven for half an hour.  I am sure this dish will be a hit with the kids!

Ingredients (serves 2):
250 g turkey meat, to be cut into big cubes
125 g plain flour
1 medium-size egg, to be slightly beaten
200 g fresh milk
90 g water
salt & ground black pepper to taste
a little butter for greasing baking dish
a rectangular (22 cm x 16 cm) baking dish

In a bowl, add flour and salt.  Mix well and make a well in the centre.  Add beaten egg and a little milk at a time.  Whisk batter and make sure that there are no lumps are formed.  Then, add water and mix well.  Lastly, season with salt and pepper to taste. Leave batter aside to stand for about one hour.

Season meat cubes with salt and pepper to taste.  Arrange meat in greased baking dish.  Place dish in preheated fan oven at a temperature of 200° C for about 10 to 15 minutes or until meat changes colour.  Remove from oven and pour batter over meat. It is important that there is enough room for the batter to rise during baking.

Return baking dish to oven and bake for about 30 minutes or until top is golden brown.  Do NOT open the oven door during baking or else your pudding will collapse. Once done, remove from oven.

Serve warm with any kind of vegetables and sauce (optional).  Today, I served this dish with steamed brussel sprouts and gravy (instant) as per our son's request.

Bon Appetit!

Saturday, 27 September 2014

Baguette Pudding

Using leftover baguette from our Muscheltopf dinner, I prepared this simple pudding for our tea-time. Normally, I add dried raisins in my Bread & Butter Pudding recipe but this time, I added dried cranberries for a sweet & sour taste.

1 large baguette
some butter
100 g dried cranberries
3 large eggs
100 g castor sugar
300 ml fresh cream
300 ml fresh milk
1-2 tbsp brown sugar
a rectangular pyrex dish (30 cm x 20 cm)

Grease pyrex dish with butter and set aside.  Slice baguette thinly as shown.

Spread butter on both sides of baguette slices and arrange in the pyrex dish. Sprinkle dried cranberries on top.  Repeat procedure until baguette slices are used up.  In a bowl, lightly whisk eggs and castor sugar together.  Then, add both cream and milk. Mix well.

Pour half of custard mixture over baguette slices and leave aside for about 10 to 15 minutes.  In the meantime, preheat fan oven to a temperature of 160° C and boil enough water for a waterbath.

Pour remaining custard mixture over baguette slices and sprinkle with brown sugar. Place pyrex dish in a deep baking tray. Place baking tray in centre of oven and add boiling water into tray so that the pyrex dish is sitting in water. Bake for about 45 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm or cold as it is or served with vanilla sauce.

Happy Baking!

Muscheltopf (Mussels in a Pot)

In Europe, the mussels season starts in September and ends in February. According to a "traditional rule", mussels should be eaten during the cold months i.e. September, Oktober, November, Dezember, Januar and Februar.  Note that all these months have the letter "r" at the end and the germans still practise this rule.  But nowadays due to the availability of fresh logistics, mussels are eaten all year round.

How do one recognise whether the mussels are fresh?  Firstly, they should have the typical sea or seaweed smell and the shells must be tightly closed.  If they are slightly opened, just slightly tap on them and they should close immediately.  If it is not the case, then they are non-edible.  Furthermore, if the shells are still closed after cooking, sort them out and throw away.

Ingredients (serves 4):
3 kg fresh mussels
3 carrots, to be peeled and cut into fine cubes
1/4 celery root, to be peeled and cut into fine cubes
1 leek, to be washed, cleaned and cut into fine cubes (optional)
2 medium-size onions, to be peeled and cut into rings
1 bay leaf
1 tbsp black peppercorns
150 ml cooking white wine (I added vegetable stock)
a handful of plucked parsley
a small handful of plucked dill
2 tbsp cooking oil

Wash and clean mussels.  Throw away damaged or opened mussels.

In a large pot, heat cooking oil over medium/high heat.  Add diced carrots, leek, celery and onions. Cook until soft and then add bay leaf & peppercorns.  Stir well and add wine or vegetable stock. Simmer for about 5 to 10 minutes.  Then, add parsley and dill.  Do NOT add any seasoning!

Lastly, add mussels and cover pot.  Cook for about 10 minutes and shake the pot at regular intervals.

Once done, remove mussels to a serving bowl by using a slotted laddle and serve the sauce on the side.  Best eaten with baguette.

Bon Appetit!

Sunday, 14 September 2014

Oat Cuttlefish

Hubby used to eat a similar dish in one of the Balkan countries during his business trip. Since he loves seafood, especially cuttlefish, I prepared this dish using ground oats and cornflour.  As a dip, I prepared a mixture of mayonnaise, minced garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice and sweet paprika powder.  For those who are calories-concious, this dish also tastes good without the dip.

500 g cuttlefish tubes
4 tbsp oat i.e. Quaker Oats, to be grounded
3 tbsp cornflour
1/2 tsp salt or according to taste
1 tsp ground black pepper
oil for deep-frying

Dip Ingredients:
150 g mayonnaise
2 pips garlic, to be peeled & minced
zest from half lemon
2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp sweet or hot paprika powder


In a bowl, mix all dip ingredients together.  Leave aside.

Wash and dry cuttlefish.  Cut one side of cuttlefish tube and open it up with the inside side facing up. Using a sharp knife, lightly make diamond cuts.  Cut into 3 cm strips and then cut the strips into 3.

In a bowl, add cornflour, oat, salt and ground black pepper.  Coat cuttlefish pieces in this mixture and leave aside.

In a wok, heat enough oil for deep-frying over medium/high heat.  Drop a few cuttlefish pieces at a time and deep-fry for about 2-3 minutes.  Remove to a tray lined with absorbent paper.  Repeat procedure.  Serve hot with dip.

Bon Appetit!