Paul’s Caul… Cheesy fucking goodness. That’s right, I said fucking

Cheesy Effing Goodness

There has been a renaissance of late as far as comfort food on menus, and by comfort food I mean food from your childhood that warms not only your belly but also the cockles of your heart. By no means does comfort food reflect how the food feels when worn as clothing, this would be a rookie mistake that I believe would end in the polar opposite of comfort.

This new wave of dishes has come at us in the form of sliders, nacho’s, Reuben’s, chicken Parma’s, cheese fries and to be honest I love it all, who wouldn’t? I’ll tell you who, people that haven’t tried them… because all of this artery clogging, cheese encrusted goodness is delicious, it’s not subtle or refined but fuck it nor am I and I’m also delicious (if I do say so myself)

But without a doubt my favourite of this genre is the ‘Mac & Cheese’ the granddaddy of cheese based dishes, this dish has been done in every which way possible and is just at home on a fine dining menu as it is being served by a buck sum whench in the local tavern. Its simply pasta and cheese but to allow more cheese to be injected into you, a sauce is made and cheese is added to that then pasta is tossed through it and finally more cheese is layered over the top, of course you could deconstruct the shit out of this dish and create some absurd dish…
“Ravioli filled with Nepalese midget churned cheese served on a bed of brioche crumbs with 1000 year old salt from the lost world of Atlantis”

But this dish definitely doesn’t need to be fucked with that much… by all means change up the cheeses that go in and the kind of pasta but keep the essence of the dish true to its ridiculously unhealthy and delightful beginnings.

Sometimes trying to be healthy when making comfort food is quite simply wrong, it detracts from the point, it can start to remove fun from the process and definitely from the flavour. So all you health nuts out there just chill the fuck out put your almonds down for just one second and get some cheese into you.

In the words of my good friend Carla Da Bruce…

“Its like going to see a whore for a cuddle” you will get it, but at what price?

Wise words there kiddies…

Here’s how I made my Mac & cheese the other night…

Mac & Cheese
50g butter
50g plain flour
250ml milk
250ml cream
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 ¼ cup grated parmesan (something real not that shit in a green shaker)
1 cup grated cheddar (a nice bitey one)
1 ¼ cup grated mozzarella
100g stilton cheese
¼ cup torn basil leaves
½ cup breadcrumbs (make your own, you know how by now or use panko crumbs, you get them in a shop J)
2cups of macaroni pasta (follow instructions on packets and cook this then chill under cold water and set to one side)

• In a medium sized pot melt the butter and stir in the flour, this is a roux, cook whilst stirring for a minute
• Now slowly and on a low heat add the liquid gradually making sure to get all lumps out, then add the Dijon
• Cook this on low heat until it thickens slightly, it may only take 2 minutes or so
• Now slowly add 1 cup of each of the cheese and all of the stilton cheese, stirring as you go, continue stirring until all the cheeses have melted
• In another bowl mix the remaining cheeses ( ¼ cup parmesan and ¼ cup mozzarella) with the bread crumbs
• Now mix the cheese sauce around the cooked off pasta, add the basil leaves and check to see if it needs any seasoning (most likely will need pepper and not much salt)
• Spread this mixture into an oven proof dish with high sides, sprinkle top with the cheesy crumb mix and bake in an oven until its brown and delicious
• How hot should the oven be? I reckon you guys can work that out all by your self’s, and if you can’t just eat the mix

Feel free to add bacon, ham, tuna, corn, peas, asparagus, zucchini… the list just goes on and on, as this shit makes every thing taste good.

You can do individual serve in small oven dishes you can fill vegetables with the mix and bake them, in fact I reckon you could use the mix to put wall paper up… how’s that shit for versatile… take that rice!

Paul’s Caul… Salads for people who don’t like salads

Salad for people that don’t like salad

I’m with you people, salad just doesn’t sound appealing its like de-caf coffee or clothes shopping with your girl, as in it just sounds shit from the get go, it may turn out to be alright but you’ll never know because you made up a lie about helping under privileged Jewish children (if there is such a thing)

But this isn’t to say I don’t eat salad I just don’t eat other peoples poor attempts of so called salads, some manky lettuce and cucumber, thickly sliced onions and half a wheelbarrow of dressing that was made early on Tuesday in 1987. But its actually not just Graeme and myself that make good salads I hear there is a guy called Dave that lives in Bulgaria making some pretty good stuff, but he sleeps with goats, and by sleeps I mean uses as a goat version of Punch and Judy if you know what I’m saying? No? Good well then lets just leave it….

So for all you rugged blokes out there that say “only gays eat salad” and “you can’t make friends with salad” I say you are one narrow minded homophobic red neck that has never eaten my ‘Peking duck salad’ and what’s more have you ever seen an unfit gay man sitting alone in a café? Hell no they are all uber fit and have shit loads of friends (I like to pigeon hole people… no that definitely is not a sexual move! Well it most likely is but I didn’t mean it in that context)

What I like to do with salads is to start with my super ingredient and that is anything you really like, from Portuguese roast chicken to Anchovy stuffed olives… now all you have to do is add a few ingredients to make a little bed for your super ingredient to sit on.

1. Pick super ingredient, chicken, Peking duck, haloumi, meatballs, squid etc.
2. Pick a filler i.e. lettuce, spinach, quinoa, cous cous, pasta, rice, noodles etc.
3. Pick two more ingredients that you feel go well with the SE, ie. Red onions, cherry toms, olives, pineapple, bacon, feta etc.
4. Pick one ingredient that is crunchy and has texture ie. Nuts, croutons, crispy bacon, glass (just checking if your still reading, please don’t use glass)
5. Dress the mo fo

Let me harp on about dressing for a second, the dressing can make or break any dish, but that doesn’t mean it has to take 5 hours and a crew of Tibetan elves to make the holier than thou dressing. It could be just a simple squeeze of lemon juice that works best or the left over juices from the meat you just cooked. It might be a nip of your favourite spirit shaken up with oil and seasoning that works best. Try it out and you’ll see that dressings take 2 seconds and are the catalyst for a flavorful salad.

I have given you my Peking duck salad recipe today and it is without a doubt my favourite salad to eat, it is everything I just explained, it’s simple, it’s manly, it’s packed full of flavour and its like a duck out of china town… off its tits.

Peking duck salad
• 1 peking duck stripped of all meat and shredded
• 1 red onion sliced
• 1 cup of mint finely sliced
• 2 long red chillies julienned (fine strips)
• ½ cup almonds (or any nut you want)
• 1 large pear, cored and finely sliced
• 5 handfuls of mixed lettuce
• Hoisin dressing (1/3 hoisin, 1/3 honey, 1/3 water)

Place the shredded duck on an oven tray and place nuts on it, coat with dressing leaving a little aside to dress later…
Place in hot oven and cook for 10-15 minutes or until it looks crispy…
Mix all remaining ingredients together then add duck while still warm and mix well…
Serve immediately.

So simple yet so delicious, this is the story of my life and most likely the title of my memoirs… but that aside please don’t run away from salad make your favourite dish into a salad, take all the ingredients and deconstruct that shit until you have an amazing salad… BAM