Sweet and Spicy Sesame Cauliflower

Sticky Sesame Cauliflower

Ehmergerd YES! This is amazingly delicious, VEGAN and baked, not fried.

Wowzers. What more can you want?!

Sweet, spicy, sticky sesame cauliflower nomnomnomnom

Serves – 4

Prep Time – 15 minutes

Cooking Time – 30 minutes

Ingredients – Batter

  • 1 packet of McCain Cauliflower
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • ½ cup plain flour
  • ½ cup self-raising flour
  • ½ tsp bi carb soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp chilli flakes
  • 2 tbs canola oil

Ingredients – sauce

  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 1/8 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 clove garlic – crushed
  • 2 tsp hot chilli sauce
  • 2 tsp corn flour
  • 1/8 cup cold water
  • Toasted sesame seeds, brown rice and spring onions to serve

Method

  1. Preheat a fan forced oven to 230°C. Line an oven tray with baking paper and coat with 1 tbs of canola oil.
  2. Cook McCain Cauliflower according to packet instructions. Once cooked, cut large pieces into bite sized chunks.
  3. Place almond milk, salt, pepper and chilli flakes in a medium sized mixing bowl. Sift in flours, bi-carb soda, baking powder and garlic powder, mix well to combine.
  4. Dip cauliflower pieces into batter, one at a time, allow excess to drip off and place onto the lined baking tray. Repeat until all are coated.
  5. Bake cauliflower for 7 minutes. Remove from oven, turn cauliflower pieces and drizzle with remaining canola oil. Return to oven and bake for a further 8 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, place soy sauce, maple syrup, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, garlic and chilli sauce into a small saucepan and allow to simmer, stirring frequently for 10 minutes.
  7. Combine water and cornflour, mix well to combine, add to sauce mixture and remove from heat.
  8. Remove cauliflower from oven, pour over sauce and return to oven for a further 5 minutes.
  9. Top cauliflower with toasted sesame seeds and serve with brown rice and spring onions.
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Caramel Chicken

Image: Super Food Ideas – August 2011, Page 61. Photography by Mark O’Meara.

Caramelised Chicken or ga kho is a sticky, sweet and spicy Vietnamese dish. And, before you get freaked out by the words Caramel and Chicken appearing alongside each other, it is savoury caramel rather than a sweet caramel. So don’t worry you won’t be tucking into a bowl of Jersey Caramels with a side of chicken thigh!

This Vietnamese style savoury caramel sauce weaves together the perfect blend of salty, sweet, sour and spicy by making a caramel using sweet brown sugar, salty fish sauce, sour lime juice and spicy chilies along with some garlic which reduces to a glaze while it cooks, for a full flavour punch. Delicious.

Ingredients – Caramel Chicken

  • 1 tbs peanut oil
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 800g chicken thigh fillets –  trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 1 medium red onion – thinly sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves – minced
  • 2 tbs soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbs fish sauce
  • 1 tbs lime juice
  • 1 tsp of dried chilli flakes
  • Steamed rice to serve

Ingredients – Pickled Cucumber

  • 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tbss caster sugar
  • 2 Lebanese cucumbers – cut into thin ribbons
  • 1 green onion – thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup of cold water

Method

  1. To make the pickled cucumber, place the vinegar, sugar and 1/4 cup cold water in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring for 2 minutes or until sugar has dissolved. Transfer to a heatproof bowl, add cucumber, stir to combine and set aside to cool completely. Once cooled, stir in the green onion.
  2. Place the chicken and oil in a bowl and toss to combine. Heat a large frying pan or wok over a high heat until hot. Add half the chicken and cook for two minutes on one side until lightly browned, turn and cook for another minute. Remove from the pan and repeat with the remaining chicken.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium and add a little extra peanut oil if needed. Add the onion and garlic and cook for five minutes, stirring occasionally. Return the chicken to the pan, add the soy sauce, chilli flakes and stir to combine.
  4. Cover the pan, reduce heat to low and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Increase the heat to high, add the sugar and stir to combine. Cook uncovered for 3-4 minutes, or until the sauce is rich, dark and syrupy.
  5. Add the fish sauce, lime juice and stir to combine.
  6. Place in a serving dish and serve with steamed rice and pickled cucumber.

Enjoy!

75 foodies on Instagram

Well I think it is safe to say that after drooling over reading this Daily Life article: http://bit.ly/1aGeE4i on the 75 best foodies to follow on Instagram my news feed is going to look a lot more delicious!

The are some stunning snaps and drool-worthy dishes on show. So much so that I felt it was my foodie duty to share the list with you. There are some I knew and followed like Jamie Oliver, Ida Frosk and Citrus and Candy; while there are others on the list I had never heard of, with great shots and very few followers. So if you like looking at pictures of things that taste great, which I assume is why you are here, then you MUST check these Instagramers out.

Oh and one little plug while I’m here – you should also follow me on Instagram! @daily_gluttony to keep up to date with all the delicious moments in my life like this Moroccan Lentil Burger – nom nom nom.

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15 Minute Monday – Asian Steamed Sea Bream

Image: delicious. - October 2012, Page 46. Photographer: Ben Dearnley.

 

Asian steamed sea bream with spring onion and ginger uses the bright flavours of Asia to make this fast, fresh midweek dinner irresistible!

Ingredients

  • 2 x 150g bream fillets
  • 2 tbs light soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp caster sugar
  • 1 tbs rice vinegar
  • 3cm piece ginger, finely shredded
  • 1 each long red and green chilli, seeds removed, thinly sliced
  • 6 spring onions, finely shredded
  • Coriander leaves and steamed rice, to serve

Method

  1. Place a plate inside a bamboo steamer and lay the fish, skin-side down, on the plate. Place the soy sauce, sesame oil, sugar and vinegar in a bowl and stir to combine, then pour over the fish. Scatter the ginger, chilli and half the spring onion over the fish. Set the steamer over a large saucepan or wok of simmering water and cover with the lid. Steam for 6 minutes or until the fish is opaque and just cooked.
  2. Garnish the fish with coriander and remaining spring onion, then drizzle over the cooking juices and serve with rice.

Enjoy!

Dumplings!

Ben has recently proclaimed that his favourite food ever is dumplings. Boiled, steamed, pot sticker or even gyoza – he is sold! And you know what, I love them too. Delicious morsels of tasty meat and silky wonton wrappers – what’s not to love?

This tasty recipe is for a quick, simple and delicious boiled dumpling; which I can’t more highly recommend you try!

Ingredients – Dumplings

  • 500g pork and veal mince
  • 150g minced fresh prawn meat
  • 1 large brown onion
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 tsp of lemongrass
  • 1 bunch of coriander
  • 2 tbs of rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tbs of sesame oil
  • 1 tbs of fish sauce
  • 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs – more if the mixture is still too wet
  • 2 packets of wonton wrappers

Ingredients – Dipping Sauce

  • 1/2 cup of soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup of rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tbs of sesame oil
  • 1 tbs of fish sauce
  • 1 tbs of fresh chopped chilli
  • 1/2 bunch of chopped corriander leaves

Method

  1. Put the onion, carrot, garlic and stalks from the coriander in a food processor and blitz until finely chopped.
  2. Add the mince, prawn meat, lemongrass, 1/2 coriander leaves, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, fish sauce and breadcrumbs to the food processor and mix to combine.
  3. Now onto folding the dumplings – there are many, many ways to do this. If you have a sure thing technique then go for it! But, what I like to do is grab a wonton wrapper, place 1 tbs of mixture in the centre, wet the edges of the wrapper with water, fold to form a semi-circle, press tightly to seal, now pinch the edges to form a pleat – I can usually do about 4 per dumpling, place on a dry surface and repeat!
  4. Pressing the edges to form a seal and pleating will ensure that your dumpling is water tight – this means when you plonk them in the water to cook they won’t explode or get all soggy and gross.
  5. Bring a large pot of boiling water to a rapid boil, add the dumplings in batches so they don’t stick together, cook for 4-5 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, add all ingredients for the dipping sauce to a bowl and mix well to combine
  7. Remove from the water, drain and serve with the dipping sauce.

Enjoy!

15 Minute Monday – Sweet and Sour Pork

Hi my name is Jessica and I love pork.

That’s it plain and simple. I love pork in any which way it can come – pork chops, bacon, ham, jamón ibérico, prosciutto – I love it. Unfortunately for me Ben isn’t as bigger fan of this delicious anomal as I am, but he is well and truly coming around to it thanks to my delicious recipe for sweet and sour pork.

After some research and recipe tweaking and I have come up with a recipe for the most delicious, succulent and non-deep fried sweet and sour pork that you will ever have. In fact, this recipe has become a weekly request in my house with pork finding its way to our shopping trolley without my guiding hand. So ditch the take-away menu and the jars of suspiciously gelatinous, fluro ‘sweet and sour sauce’ because this recipe is chinch to make and it is delicious!

Ingredients

  • 600g of pork – I use heart smart steaks, diced. You can use chicken if you’d prefer
  • 2 tbs of cornflour
  • 2 tbs of plain flour
  • 1/2 tsp of salt
  • 1 tbs of peanut oil
  • 1 medium brown onion – halved and sliced
  • 1 large red capsisum – cut into strips
  • 1 large carrot – cut into matchsticks or julienned if you’re feeling fancy
  • 1 head of broccoli – cut into florets
  • 3/4 cup water
  • Steamed rice to serve

Ingredients – Sweet and Sour Sauce

  • 2 tbs white vinegar
  • 1 tbs shao sing wine (Chinese cooking wine) or rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tbs honey
  • 2 tbs soy sauce
  • 2 tbs sweet chilli sauce
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbs oyster sauce
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp tamarind paste
  • 1 tbs ketchup manis
  • 2 cloves of garlic – minced
  • 1 tbs tomato paste

Method

  1. Place the pork, cornflour, plain flour and salt in a bag, combine, add pork and shake/rattle/roll to evenly coat the pork. This coating works thicken the sauce and to provide a healthy version of the delicious coating you get on sweet and sour pork in Chinese restaurants without having to deep fry the pork.
  2. Combine all sauce ingredients in a bowl and mix well to combine.
  3. Meanwhile, heat peanut oil in a large pan over high heat. Add onion and fry until translucent.
  4. Add pork and stir well to ensure all sides brown.
  5. Meanwhile, cook rice in rice cooker as per packet instruction, if you have a steamer tray on your rice cooker add your vegetables to the steaming tray halfway through cooking. I like to add the harder vegetables to the bottom layer i.e. carrot and broccoli stalks, then the softer vegetables like capsicum on the top layer.
  6. Once the pork has browned add the sauce, water and stir to coat all pieces of pork. Add the vegetables, reduce to a low heat and cover to simmer for five minutes or until the pork is cooked.
  7. Serve with steamed rice. 

Now I can’t go past a post on pork without one of my favourite pork quotes….

Pressure Cooker Char Siu Pork

Image: Super Food Ideas - August 2011, Page 60. Photographer: Mark O'Meara.

Image: Super Food Ideas – August 2011, Page 60. Photographer: Mark O’Meara.

This is a recipe for the lovely, sticky, red-coated pork that you see hanging in Chinese restaurant windows. Char siu is of Cantonese origin where skewers of pork are marinated in a honey, hoisin sauce and then roast in oven to charred, savoury and sticky sweet perfection.

This recipe smells divine as it cooks and is so easy to make. If there is a pork recipe that defines Chinese cooking, I think char siu would be it! And let’s face it, who doesn’t want an excuse to eat pork.

Ingredients

  • 1 tbs peanut oil
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 cup of hoi sin sauce
  • ¼ cup of light soy sauce
  • ¼ cup dry sherry or Chinese shoasing wine or rice wine vinegar
  • 1L of chicken stock
  • 1kg of pork belly – bones removed
  • 2 tbs honey
  • 1 tsp Chinese five-spice
  • 1 tbs red fermented bean curd – available from Asian grocers
  • 3 drops of red food colouring (optional)
  • A large pinch of white pepper (optional)
  • Serve with steam rice, steamed Asian greens and top with fried shallots

Method

  1. Set your pressure cooker to sauté. Add the soy sauce, sherry, stock, bean paste, food colouring, pepper, Chinese-five spice and ¼ cup of hoisin sauce. Allow to cook for five minutes or until slightly thickened.
  2. Score the top of the pork cutting through the skin in straight lines at 1-1.5cm intervals. Add the pork to the pressure cooker, turn to coat and submerge in the sauce – dependent on the size of your pressure cooker you may need to cut the pork in half.
  3. Set your pressure cooker and allow to cook for 30 minutes on medium heat.
  4. Remove the pork from the pressure cooker, allow to mildly cool and cut into 18 even-sized pieces. Reserve the cooking liquid.
  5.  Combine the honey, sesame oil, ¼ cup of hoi sin sauce and ¼ cup of cooking liquid in a bowl and set aside.
  6. Heat the peanut oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the pork and cook for 5-10 minutes, brushing with honey mixture every minute, until golden brown and well coated.
  7. Meanwhile, place 1 cup of the cooking liquid in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, bring to the boil and reduce to simmer for 3-5 minutes or until slightly thickened and almost syrupy.
  8. Serve the Char Siu pork with steam rice, steamed Asian green and sauce; top with crispy shallots.

Enjoy!