Thursday, July 29, 2010

Food Bloggers Assemble! At Moo Moos

The latest catch up of the Brisbane food bloggers was at Moo Moos, a fairly upmarket grill inside the Marriot hotel in Brisbane city. As most people who read this blog know, I'm not that big on restaurant reviews, mainly cause I just love doing the cooking, partly because I forget the incredible amount of work that goes into a kitchen like this and get snippy over small things.

Nights like the food bloggers nights and the Burger meet ups are massively enhanced by being surrounded by people who just want to discuss and dissect food, tech, current affairs, you name it. It's never boring. Neither was the entree, a tasting plate with four small portions gracing it. I'm not a big seafood fan, but i had to do a double take at the scallop, it was so soft and pleasurable it was like eating flavoured textured air. Divine. The pork belly was excellent, wouldn't make my top five, but that is a very, very long list. There was a superb piece of dry cured meat on a cracker and a deep fried zucchini flower filled with goats cheese. I love these and this one was done beautifully, creamy and crunchy.

The main course was a sirloin on mash with asparagus. Now I'm going to say up front that I'm stupidly hard to please when it comes to beef. I work in the butcher industry and I know how to cook a nice piece of beef. Don't always get it right, but I cane myself just as hard when I don't. Because beef is something that when you do get right, is mind blowingly good. This sirloin was OK. The mash was just OK and the asparagus was pretty tired. Again, I have my own asparagus patch and no restaurant can ever compete with the fresh picked stuff, but this asparagus was not that fresh. I could have had the fish, but why go to a grillhouse and have fish?

The dessert however was on another planet. There is no way I'd be able to cook that at home without a bit of practice. A small chocolate brownie, topped with some vanilla ice cream and dusted with crunchy, tasty honeycomb, with a little side dish of hot fudge ready to be tipped over at the last second. It was the tastebud highlight of the night for me, a non sweet tooth.

It was great to catch up with all the different people that I interact or watch on twitter and in blogland, the conversation was sparkling and interestin and I'm looking forward to the next one already.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Awesome food blog

Crash Test Kitchen was recommended to me by some friends a while ago and it is definietly worth having alook at...

Monday, July 19, 2010

Brunch on weekend

I went to brunch at my mate Nick's place on Sunday - he and his wife don't have a television so while we are sitting around watching Masterchef - they seem to spend a whole of their time actually cooking and baking...

I forgot to take a photo of the bread they had made but apparently this book has changed their life - it is called Artisan breads in five minutes a day - they bought it off the interweb and they said that it is totally awesome - well worth buying.  The bread they made certainly backed up that claim because it was better then a lot of the so-called artisan bread you can pick up down here.  

This was the other special delight of the day a BABKA - apparently an old Jewish recipe - a yeasty baked treat with heaps of chocolate and nuts and totally delicious. The closest thing that I could find online was this recipe here.

New Toy

I picked up this slow cooker on weekend and left it at home full of lamb shanks, red wine and various other bits and pieces on a low heat - I put it all together this morning and then headed off to work.

I hope that after 9-10 hours of cooking we get something very yummy out of it when I get home...

I will keep you posted.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Warm chunky soup.

Hey, gees, cough, how'd it get so dusty in here. Open that window. Have we got some onions? Yes? Garlic and carrots? Oh well, we'll make do, let's get cooking.

My apologies for the absence. Lantanaland has been taking up a bit of my time, but this weekend, against all sanity, we are going camping in the rain and the cold ( for QLD) on North Stradbroke.

The Wife has requested a soup I do in the dream pot for this sort of camp. For those of you who don't know the dream pot is a big pot that has a case like a thermos. You cook up some soup or stew and put it in and it loses heat very, very slowly. I have had soup from it too hot to touch ten hours after it came off the stove.

This is a hearty thick peasant soup. Sweat off some onion, carrot, celery and garlic. Add water and some bacon bones from a butcher that smokes his own ham. Cook until all the soft bits have fallen off the bones. Remove the bones and add a cup of dried soup mix and a cup of pearl barely. Stick it in the fridge. All the excess fat will solidify on the top and you can easily remove it.

Chop a few potatoes and mushrooms up and add to the mix along with a bottle of dark beer or white wine, depending on your tastes. Cook slowly for as long as you want and serve with good fresh bread and lots of butter.

Hope it keeps me warm.

-- MF from the iPhone