I have never put so much thought into finding the food I want in my whole life and career in food. If I feel like eating an Asian meal or anything Mediterranean I am used to just heading off to the shops to buy whatever appeals and looks good on the day. The discipline of searching out as many as 75% of ingredients from just one state of Australia is a novel challenge.
We have visitors at the moment, both are from New Zealand and I cannot resist telling them where the food is from and hope they appreciate the quality of the ingredients and are not bored by the unsolicited information.
As I write this the guests are driving along the Bay of Fires coastline and I am cooking a leg of spring lamb in an electric frying pan. Now here is a cooking device that I never use but as I inherited it with the house I thought I would do a retro dinner. I do remember my mother using it regularly when it first came into vogue. Now of course as it bubbles away nearby I recall that electric frying pans do not keep an even heat, the thermostat seems to go up and down, it slows the cooking and then send it back up to the temperature you set it on and everything starts madly bubbling and steaming. It will suffice but only just for the braise method I am using but I will revert back to the oven or cooking it on the stove top in a heavy cast iron Dutch oven. Trouble is I still don’t trust my Fisher and Paykel under-bench oven. It smokes if you put the oven fan on and I have cleaned it just in case there is grease that is causing the smoking. I cannot wait to get a new one.
Having said that I did manage a successful Lemon Delicious pudding last night, thank you Philip Johnson for your recipe. And I cooked my first Anzacs with success. I used the Tasmanian Elgaar Farm organic rolled oats. I do not have a biscuit sheet, another item for the shopping list so I used a flat pizza stone with a sheet of baking paper.
When I went to the Salty Seas, yesterday, it is a shop here that looks more like a fishermans’ coop, the only fresh fish was flathead and ling. I bought the ling and instead of the usual pan fry approach I poached them lightly in lemon juice and water. Kept them warm whilst I made a sauce with cream and Hill Farm horseradish. I added a couple of egg yolks and watched it like a hawk so it would not turn into scrambled eggs. I poured the sauce over the fish and took away the bland look with some fresh chopped parsley. This was a recipe I had never cooked before and what’s more I have never used horseradish as a seasoning for fish and it actually worked. The recipe came from Vicki Wild’s Seafood Kitchen. I did not take a photo of the fish dish as it was more important to get it to the hungry men sitting at the table whilst it was hot. The wine for the fish…. a Freycinet Vineyard Riesling 2008 and it’s crisp minerally long aftertaste worked well with the creamy sauce. Another wine to add to my faves so far.
The Lemon Delicious here was made with lemons that were a gift from a neighbour. The photo up top shows some the lemons in a white ‘milk glass’ fruit dish I bought at St Helens market back in February this year. But when I made the Lemon Delicious one of the guests wanted a photo so I rushed a quick one before it deflated a little. I served it with Van Dieman’s Land Vanilla Bean ice cream from The East Coast Providore in St Helens. Recipes for these are in the RECIPE tab on top of the blog banner.
Next meal is at the local restaurant Angasi in Binalong. Our guests are treating us so I am hoping it is as good as it was last time we were here back in February.