Thai Noodle Salad w/ Fried Soft Shell Crab

Thai Noodle Salad w/ Fried Soft Shell Crab
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Thai Noodle Salad w/ Fried Soft Shell Crab – There really isn’t anything more delicious than a beautifully cooked, crunchy soft shell crab.

I had two crabs still in the freezer, which whenever I opened the door would scream to be cooked… You seem to always feel – at least I do,  that you need an occasion to cook these, so I had been holding off… till today!

I have a detailed description of how to clean the crab in a previous post, How To Prepare Soft Shell Crab, so there’s no excuse not to try this – you will love it!

The flavours are deliciously fresh and zingy with lots of textures to make your mouth feel likes it’s at a party!

Best Ever Chili Con Carne w/ Chorizo & Dates

Best Ever Chili Con Carne w/ Chorizo & Dates
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Best Ever Chili Con Carne w/ Chorizo & Dates – You may be a little surprised with the use of dates in this recipe but rest assured, once you have tried it you will be hooked.

So why did I use dates? Well, a chili con carne ideally uses a variety of peppers, each adding their own uniqueness to the dish. For example, capsicum adds a sweet, bright flavour without any heat. Chipotles add a warming heat with a smoky tobacco flavour. Arbol or similar are the fire and Ancho add a deep almost fruity flavour. If you find a pepper to match each of these four flavour groups you will have a well rounded dish.

As I didn’t had all the peppers available to me I improvised. Missing the deep fruity flavour, I dug around and found dates. Perfect! Blending the dates with the chipotles and tomatoes to make a rich, hot and smokey paste, which was smoothed out with the addition of the dates was pure genius… if I do say so myself.

The addition of chorizo adds a slightly different texture to the mince plus, depending on your chosen chorizo sausage it can add extra heat and spiciness. I cook the sausage at the beginning so as to use the rendered fat to cook the onions in. Setting it aside till the end means the chorizo crumbs remain little flavour bombs rather than melding into the flavour pot.

Chili con carne along with bolognese is a mince dish that is best made in bulk as reheated meals always taste so good. And having frozen portions in the freezer means you will always have a delicious meal available… Stuffed baked potatoes or zucchinis. Use it on your nachos or burritos.

Endless possibilities… Blondie 🙂

Tahini & Miso Dressing

Finding Feasts Tahini & Miso Dressing
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Tahini & Miso Dressing – OK, I rarely come across a simple recipe that I think is to-die-for but this one is it! This tahini & miso dressing recipe is addictive, I mean REALLY addictive! With four simple ingredients you can’t go wrong.

I love making my dressing but of late have been sticking to two well worn out recipes, wholegrain mustard with lemon and garlic or balsamic vinegar….boring!

I was first introduced to this recipe by Miss H’s nan and pop. Nan and pop visit us every few weeks and when they do pop cooks amazing dishes, dishes that I would typically not cook myself. Nan and pop are into hip stuff like yoga, meditation and macrobiotics.

Macro what I hear you ask? No this isn’t another new fad diet, it is a lifestyle. The macrobiotic philosophy has been around for centuries. The main principles are centered around  holistic nutrition, understanding where your food came from, how it was handled, eating seasonal, local food that is chemical free. It promotes eating grains and plenty of fresh vegetable but limits the intake of animal products.

During the last visit pop made this tahini and miso dressing with fried tofu and braised green vegetables. Utterly divine I tell you! Tofu can be quite bland but by adding this yummy dressing the tofu come to life.

Make a batch of this at the beginning of the week, keep it in the fridge and use as required. If you add less liquid it easily transforms to tasty dip with some flat bread or carrot sticks when you are feeling peckish. It is my go to treat at work when 3 o’clock-itis kicks in.


Szarlotka – Polish Apple Cake

Finding Feasts Szarlotka Apple Cake
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Szarlotka – Polish apple cake – If I had to make a choice between a sweet and savoury dish I would definitely choose savoury, unless a plate of my mum’s yummy apple cake otherwise known as Szarlotka was put in front of me!

Szarlotka  is somewhat similar to an apple pie however the top and bottom is of a much different consistency and the apple mixture is far less sweet. Mum has also from time to time added raisins, although as a child I hated that version. Raisins were these strange unknown little brown ‘bits’ that didn’t sit well with me. The topping can vary too from a sweet short-crust pastry to a sweet crumble, very similar to an apple crumble pie.

The recipe I have posted here is one that my mum has been making for years and if challenged she could most likely make it from scratch with her eyes closed!  It’s a recipe that takes me back to my childhood memories, especially the ones where I could have endless slices and not worry about the side effects like having to count the calories! Ahh those days a long gone!

Mum would always let the cake rest and cool first before serving it up, but I love it whilst its still warm and sometimes have some vanilla ice cream on the side! Equally delish the very next day, warmed up in the oven.

… enjoy


Avocado & Miso Dressing w/ Chicken Quesadillas

Avocado Miso Dressing w/ Chicken Quesadillas
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Avocado & Miso Dressing w/ Chicken Quesadillas – This is a multi use dressing as it will depend on the consistency you make it as to its use. Here I have used it as a dip so have left it quite thick. If you want to have it as a dressing for a chicken salad then add some water till you get to a more fluid type consistency.

The flavours in this dressing pair so well with chicken that I know you will come up with a multitude of menu ideas to use it with.

Happy lunching! Blondie

Loaded Chicken Noodle Soup w/ Omelette

Chicken Noodle Soup Omelette
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Loaded Chicken Noodle Soup w/ Omelette – Looking for a quick meal to make that’s delicious and healthy also? You can’t go past this soup. Plus, leftover chicken gets shredded for sandwiches over the next day or two…. hmmm, poached chicken and mayo with salad sandwiches…

What I love about this soup is that all the hard work is done with very little effort from you. The whole chicken and the flavourings added to the cooking water are busy doing their thing. The water is being turned into a fragrant stock and the chicken is cooking in one of the most gentlest ways possible, leaving it fall off the bone tender and juicy.

When you get home, all you need to do is put the whole chicken (or chicken pieces) in a pot large enough to hold it and throw in all the ingredients for the soup base. Leave it to cook for 60 minutes while you are getting out of your work gear and then it’s basically done.  You just need to compile and then devour.

Another reason chicken soups like these are so fantastic and easy to make, is because you can use frozen chicken, straight from your freezer. I know! Amazing, right?! This one was actually made with a whole frozen chicken. The time is a little longer, closer to 1hr 40mins or so, depending on size, but the result is the same. Just make sure you have a meat thermometer so you can check that it’s fully cooked on the inside. You want the internal temperature to be 75°C / 167°F for chicken.

Any part of the chicken is suitable in this recipe so keep some thighs or breasts permanently stocked in your freezer, along with a bag of frozen veggies and you will always have chicken soup.

Happy slurping! Blondie

Gow Gee Silverbeet & Ricotta Ravioli

Gow Gee Sliverbeet and Ricotta Ravioli
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Gow Gee Silverbeet & Ricotta Ravioli – I have a soft spot for pasta, especially when it is filled with cheese & spinach / silverbeet!

Where possible I do try to make my own pasta dough but there are occasions when time is of the essence! It was a few years ago when talking to mum I found out that she sometimes makes pierogi (Polish dumplings) & other ravioli type things by using Gow Gee pastry. Gow Gee pastry can be found at your local Asian supermarket or grocery store in the fridge section.

So I am stealing her idea! Don’t get me wrong…absolutely nothing beats fresh home made pasta…but when you are pressed for time…this is almost just as good!

I serve this with my favourite creamy pink sauce…my question to you is…what is YOUR favourite pasta sauce?

Look forward to hearing from you!