I’m finally back in the UK after a 6 month contract (jolly) in Dubai. It was a hell of an experience, and I gained plenty of inspiration from all the amazing food that I have talked about in previous posts. It is great to be back in Blighty (rain and all) and great to be back in my kitchen with all my gadgets, knives that actually work and more than 1 saucepan!
Within the first few weeks home (dubbed pork fest, due to the amount of pork I was intending to eat, after a 6 month drought of it – so not as rude as it sounds!) I hit the kitchen hard and made a number of different things including toad in the hole (for this one I wrapped sausages with bacon for a double pork hit), pulled pork (more on this one in a following post), pancetta loaded carbonara (delia’s recipe), lasagne, bacon sandwiches (of course) and a number of other pork related meals!
It wasn’t all pork though and I also made some amazing meatballs stuffed with Mozzarella, this was from one of the junior Masterchef contestants (seriously impressive!) which I found in the Waitrose Magazine (May 2015)
Melting Mozarella Meatballs
1 tbsp italian mixed herbs
125g grated mozzarella
1 tbsp parmesan
40g fresh white breadcrumbs
500g beef mince
2 tbsp olive oil
Turn oven on to 150ºC
1 – Mix the herbs with the mozzarella.
2 – Take a handful and squeeze it into a tight ball, slightly smaller than a 50p coin. Do this 12 times and chill in the fridge
3 – In a large bowl beat the egg with 1 tbsp of water
4 – Mix in the parmesan and season. Add the breadcrumbs and mmix together until fully combined and the breadcrumbs are soggy (leave to soak for a few mins if needed)
5 – Split the meat into 12 equal portions.
6 – Take 1 portion and squash into a flat disc about 1cm thick
7 – Take a mozzarella ball and squeeze into the middle of the disc. Wrap the meat around and pinch together any gaps. Roll around until a ball with no gaps fully covering the cheese. Repeat for all 12.
8 – Heat the oil in a large non stick frying pan and add meatballs browning each side for 1-2 mins until it all are browned all over.
9 – Place meatballs in an overproof dish and cook for 20 mins, turning halfway through.
I served this with a rich tomatoe sauce using wine, passata, chopped toms, balsamic and honey and spaghetti with a couple of the large meatballs served on top. It was simple and delicious.
Its not all been meat filled though as I have also made a fish and butterbean stew. Kind of threw this together. but tastes great, and again here is a recipe for you:
Henry’s Fish Stew
2 Salmon Fillets, cut into pieces about 4cm squared
1 can of Butterbeans
1 can chopped tomatoes
100ml white wine
1 large white onion chopped
Tin of anchovies
Fresh Parsley (chopped)
2 garlic cloves (chopped or crushed)
1 – Heat olive oil or butter in a large saucepan
2 – Fry off your onions for 5-10 minutes until soft and clear, add garlic and fry for a further couple of minutes on a medium heat.
3 – Chuck in the tin of butterbeans, the wine, chopped anchovies and simmer until the wine has reduced by about half
4 – Add in the chopped tomatoes, juice of half a lemon, salt and pepper and simmer for a further 10 minutes to thicken up the sauce.
5 – Add in the chopped pieces of salmon and reduce heat to low and simmer slowly for 20 minutes until the fish is cooked through
6 – Add in the parsley and serve with couscous or a salad with slices of lemon on the side.
You will notice a distinct lack of photos, – no excuses I am out of practice and appreciate this makes this kind of a dull post, but will make sure that my next one is chock full of photos!