Potato, roast carrot and corn salad… and its good friend, the BBQ sauce

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potato salad, bbq sauce, barbecue, low and slow
This is a damn good salad.

It’s good with heaps of different other things on the table too.

It’s also just pretty damn good to put a big fat bowl of it into your mouth late night after a little too much rehydration therapy.

It is a salad that has appeared next to some of my favourite meaty things over the past 6 months or so.

I guess now would be a good time to mention that this is not a story about how the little potato salad, the side dish, the supporting actor rose to glory and became the main event in it’s own right. Nope. This is not a win for the little man, this is really quite simply a recipe for a salad. A damn good salad… and it’s good friend at the BBQ table (or breakfast table… dinner table… burger feast… bedroom), the new and improved recipe BBQ sauce.

Read on.

That potato salad

That potato salad

Some other things we put on the table next to that potato salad

Some other things we put on the table next to that potato salad

POTATO, ROAST CARROT & CORN SALAD

With upgrade options.

(serves 4-6 as a side)

3 medium potatoes, diced about the size of the keys on your computer keyboard, boiled or steamed until tender
2 medium carrots, roasted and then cut a similar size to the potatoes
2 sweet corn, kernals removed from cobs, tossed in a pan with some oil for a minute or two
*1 chorizo sausage, sliced
*1 green capsicum (pepper), medium diced
3-4 shallots (spring onions), sliced
1 large handful parsley, chopped
Salt and pepper

• Mix it all together. Effing simple as that
• *Add upgrade options if you’re keen
• Season to your liking with salt and pepper
• Fuck yes

That BBQ sauce

That BBQ sauce

I also enjoyed home  made pickled jalapeños on the table with my BBQ. Maybe we should make them together some time...

I also enjoyed home made pickled jalapeños on the table with my BBQ. Maybe we should make them together some time…

BBQ SAUCE

1.25 cups tomato paste
1.5 cups brown sugar
1 cup maple syrup (just like cocaine, the pure stuff is best but if the cheap stuff is what you can afford then I’m sure you’re going to buy it anyway)
125ml apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons smoked paprika
2 teaspoons each onion powder, garlic powder, cumin
1 teaspoons each dried chilli flakes and ground black pepper
scant ½ cup corn flour, whisked into 1 cup water to form a slurry
¾ tablespoon salt
1lt water

• Dump all of the ingredients except cornflour slurry into a large, heavy based pot
• Simmer over a med-low heat for 45 minutes or so, stirring often to avoid burning and fusing to the bottom of your pot
• Stir in corn flour slurry and cook for another 5 minutes, stirring constantly
• Right now you could put it into your smoker at 110C for an hour or so for a little smoky love because we all need a little smoky love in our lives from time to time or you can let it cool, stirring from time to time, and then pour it over just about anything that’s going to end up in your mouth
• Did you notice how “stirring constantly”, “stirring often” and “stirring from time to time” are all use in different points in this recipe? That’s because they are all different things! Work it out!

Pork ribs, truffle mac cheese, chow chow (can be found on these pages somewhere), that potato salad, jalapeños and that BBQ sauce. this made my face happy

Pork ribs, truffle mac cheese, chow chow (can be found on these pages somewhere), that potato salad, jalapeños and that BBQ sauce. this made my face happy

Crumbed fish so easy my kids could do it

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crumbed breaded fish
Crumbed (breaded) fish is so easy my kids could do it.

…and they did.

Well, I would be more correct in saying that Obi made it. He made it look as piss easy as it should look too.

Flour, egg wash and then bread crumbs. That is not rocket science. Building rockets is rocket science. This isn’t even close to a chance meeting with Stephen Hawking. It is not, I repeat, not science.

It is though, a pretty satisfying way to cook some nice fresh fish at home. Also, just to reiterate, it is also very easy and has the added advantage of going to be a whole heap tidier than pulling out the battered and deep fried version of fish dinner… especially if you are a first timer…

I’ll even make it more of a showy-telly-looky kind of thing, as apposed to one of those lotsa-wordy-ready things that take all of the mental capacity of some one who is a fair bit smarter than you’re looking right now.

Whoa. Soz. Really , I’m not trying to insult anyone… except maybe you. Yeah, you know who I’m talking to.

So on with the photos then…

Get the kids up really early and get on a boat that will take you into the ocean

Get the kids up really early and get on a boat that will take you into the ocean

Suss out some whales on the way (we will not be crumbing these today)

Suss out some whales on the way (we will not be crumbing these today)

Mandatory pic of kids with fish

Mandatory pic of kids with fish

Fillet and skin fish. We cut the fillets into fish finger sort of looking pieces because the boys wanted to make home made fish fingers, but goujons is probably the more correct term

Fillet and skin fish. We cut the fillets into fish finger sort of looking pieces because the boys wanted to make home made fish fingers, but goujons is probably the more correct term

That is followed by a roll through the flour, a dip through the egg wash and then a quick romp through the breadcrumbs. Read it again if you couldn't make sense of it...

That is followed by a roll through the flour, a dip through the egg wash and then a quick romp through the breadcrumbs. Read it again if you couldn’t make sense of it…

Obi shallow fries the fish fingers over med-low heat for 4-5 minutes, turning regularly

Obi shallow fries the fish fingers over med-low heat for 4-5 minutes, turning regularly

Eaty time with a potato, roasted carrot, chorizo and corn salad and home made tartare

Eaty time with a potato, roasted carrot, chorizo and corn salad and home made tartare


You can do this shit, trust me.

And if you are thinking you might like the look of the salad we had with ours, rest assured it will be hitting these inter-web pages soon!

Very bloody tasty indeed

Very bloody tasty indeed

A Cracking Winter Barbecue and My Nana Rose’s Potato Salad

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Cook some sausages on the BBQ and while your at it, get a nice pot of pulled pork on there too

Cook some sausages on the BBQ and while your at it, get a nice pot of pulled pork on there too


I have been on a brief hiatus, much like the syphilis in the old sea farer’s knickers after a quick shot of penicillin (pun well and truly intended), but never fear, I will always return to these pages just like the venereal disease will return to the knickers of the wayward sailor. It’s just that, much like the wayward sailor with the laden purse, I have found a new mistress who promises me pleasures of the flesh… or at least a new job. That’s right, I have a new job. And just like a new mistress that new job will take up a lot of my time. But unlike a new mistress, it will reward me with the a fist full of the queen’s good dollars so I may ensure the bank does not for-close on our mortgage, rendering us of no home and obligated to join the queue of haggard, potato sack wearing folks with clear birth defects, begging the carnie folk to employ our feeble services.

To top off the new job business, Jennee and I have decided to start a new little business venture all of our own. Now, don’t start letting your mind wonder about the you tube clips we may or may not be offering the world in the not to distant future because the little undertaking we are embarking on is totally legit! We, my friends, are starting a catering business.

Oh yes the things we shall do.

So that, in a nut shell (not an actually nut shell, of course. That would make me some kind of squirrel or that weird little creature off “Ice Age” the picture film) is why I have had neither the time nor… well… just the time really, to visit my friends in Blogland.

But here I am with some pretty pictures of another cracking winter barbecue we sorted out recently and, just for your face’s pleasure at your next winter (or summer) barbecue, I shall revisit the recipe for my Nana Rose’s potato salad. This salad is pretty flexible when it comes to the use of smoked pork product and herbs. Smoked Polish sausage is what Nana would use but bacon, speck, ham or any smoked pork product are all very feasible alternatives. Also, I often use dill instead of parsley (of even both if you want to be total rock star), but any herb would work.

It’s great to be back, thanks for having me and you’re very welcome.

Get it on the table so people can eat it

Get it on the table so people can eat it

Give them forks. We are not animals

Give them forks. We are not animals

Plenty to go round

Plenty to go round

Don't be afraid to chuck some flowers on your salad as it tends to impress the shit out of your friends. Just make sure they're edible as poisoning your friends equals no friends for you

Don’t be afraid to chuck some flowers on your salad as it tends to impress the shit out of your friends. Just make sure they’re edible as poisoning your friends equals no friends for you

Smoked sausage, sauerkraut, caramelised onion, mustard, tomato relish, jalapeño relish and gruyere cheese, in a roll and about to make it's way into my belly

Smoked sausage, sauerkraut, caramelised onion, mustard, tomato relish, jalapeño relish and gruyere cheese, in a roll and about to make it’s way into my belly

That potato salad

That potato salad

MY NANA ROSE’S POTATO SALAD

1kg baby potatoes, boiled in their skin, whole, until tender (the potato should slide off easily when you insert a knife. Kind of like a stripper sliding down a pole. Are those things lubed up or what? Wait up. I think I just got it) and cut into bite sized pieces
1 brown onion, peeled and diced
4-5 polski ogorki (dill pickles), diced
1 cup of diced smoked sausage
4 boiled eggs, peeled and chopped
A bunch of parsley, chopped
1-2 tablespoons white wine or apple cider vinegar, or the liquid from the pickles
A splash of oil (not engine oil. Vegetable or light olive oil should do the trick)
Salt and a good hit of white pepper

• The main requirement for making this is that it is mixed while the potatoes are still warm so all of the ingredients can have a little party and their flavours can really get to know each other, just like when you’re at and orgy and you can taste a little bit of everyone on each and every person. This salad is good porn.

Doesn’t look like much but that’s childhood memories in a bowl right there.

Make it today, or go to an orgy. Up to you…

Fathers Day and a bounty of bacon

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Bacon roses are my favourite flowers ever

Bacon roses are my favourite flowers ever

This past Sunday was Fathers Day. I’m not sure if that shit has gone viral and all of the world does it or how it works so if I am stating a really obvious fact maybe, before you start writing your local MP about some ignorant dick from outback Austraaaalia, just chill the fuck out, sit back in your comfy chair with a nice big pile of 1970’s midget porn and a bottle of your mums best hand moisturiser and sort yourself out. And just remember; I don’t care if you think I’m stupid because you’re ugly and at least I can fix stupid… wait… errrr… ugly… umm… stupid can’t be fixed can it? Dammit!

So Fathers Day it was and I arrived, a year since we last celebrated this occasion, with two children still intact and accounted for. Magic. Always a good start.

They showered me with hand written cards stating that I was the best dad ever, and also and array of bacon based paraphernalia. What more could a man want? What’s that? A slap a dinner of pork belly with coleslaw and potato salad? Sure thing. That sounds like a truly effing great fitting finish to a great day. Which leads me, somewhat poorly, into a short story about my friend bacon.

Roast pork belly. Check

Roast pork belly. Check

My favourite sides. Check

My favourite sides. Check

Plate, fork, face. Check! Let's get this show on the road

Plate, fork, face. Check! Let’s get this show on the road

Jennee even made a Vienetta type thing because that's Dr Chris' favourite dessert

Jennee even made a Vienetta type thing because that’s Dr Chris’ favourite dessert

Bacon things to make my face smile

Bacon things that the boys picked out. Damn well love those kids

Bacon

It was a glorious day for all humanity the day that bacon was discovered, fantastic for the people but not so good for the pig. The pig was most likely previously left to its own devices, maybe even living amongst the human man as a companion, a friend. Maybe the pig was named Arthur. They would read books, go out for coffee and go for long walks on the beach together. At the time it was harmless fun but this seemingly harmless leisure time activity would spell the end for the ungodly relationship between man and pig and the beginning of breakfasts of bacon and what would become its new best friend, the egg. Lunches of bacon butties, crisp bacon in salads or maybe a nice steak wrapped in bacon. And dinner? Well dinner my friends, was more of the same. Yes it was unfortunate for our porcine friends that they had begun to “cure” themselves after many swims in the salty ocean “brine”. Then drying off the pig had inadvertently started to “cook” itself after falling asleep under the midday sun. The poor piggy awoke to the horrible shock of his longtime friend, Geoffrey, slicing him up for mans first bacon feast.

Since that day bacon has fed kings and queens, porters and paupers, white, black, jungle bunny and gigolo. It has bridged the language gap and crossed cultural borders, wars have been reasoned and solved with the help of a slice of bacon in the belly, many pages of the history books of the world have been written with pen in one hand and bacon in the other, bacon has been buried in time capsules and sent to the furthest reaches of our known universe in the hope that it will attract alien interest and to prove to them that we have some kind of intelligence going on.

In conclusion I would just like to say bacon is really good.

I like bacon and my children.

Thank you.

My Nana’s potato salad

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This is a salad that reminds me every time I eat it, of Christmas, and, well, anytime we had a family gathering back home. I’ve used versions of it to feed emperors and kings… And the odd carnie sex slave who’s starting to get a bit skinny. It never fails to impress, and still impresses the absolute crap out of me with its ease of delivery.

My Nana’s version uses potato, Polski OGorki (polish dill pickles), smoked polish sausage, brown onion, boiled egg, white pepper and vinegar. When I’m in need of a nostalgia fix I will follow her recipe to the cute little misspelled English letter. Other times I will wing it a little (I call these times “the winging times”. Not very creative i know) and add a bit of mayonnaise, different meat, nuts or herbs. If my grandad were still here he would look at me and say “what are you doing boy?” in his still excellent polish accent, then he would chuckle to himself and go back to within a foot of the TV to watch the next half of the west coast eagles game. My grandad loved the west coast eagles… And he didn’t see very well.

Today I’m going to use some leftover Christmas ham for the meat because Christmas ham is good meat and there’s still plenty of it floating around (not literally floating of course. That would mean I spent my Christmas on LSD. And I’m way to mature for that shit) and I’ll also add a bit of mayonnaise to the dressing. But I’ll give you Nana’s recipe just to keep this shit real. You do what you need to do.

IMG_3342

choppy choppy

NANA ROSE’S POTATO SALAD

1kg potatoes, boiled in their skin, whole, until tender (the potato should slide off easily when you insert a knife. Kind of like a stripper sliding down a pole. Are those things lubed up or what… Wait up. I think I just got it), then use a paring knife to peel them while they’re still hot just to show all of your cats how awesome you are, and then cut potatoes into bite sized cubes

1 brown onion, peeled and diced

4-5 dill pickles, diced

1 cup of diced smoked sausage

4 boiled eggs, peeled and chopped

Salt and a good hit of whit pepper

A good splash of white wine vinegar or the liquid from the pickles

  • The main requirement for making this is that it is mixed while the potatoes are still warm so all of the ingredients can have a little party and their flavours can really get to know each other. Like when you’re at and orgy and you can taste a little bit of everyone on each and every person. This salad is good porn.

IMG_3345

Doesn’t look like much but that’s childhood memories in a bowl right there.

Make it today… Or go to an orgy. Up to you…

Didn’t get much going in the way of Christmas food photos sorry. Could have had something to do with the fat time I was having with those Swedish prostitutes and all that LSD. Hmmmm…

I’ll pull something together.

Camp food (cooking with wood) part 2

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BREAKFAST

Wake up to the pretty birdies, get that fire burning again cos we need some coffee and a big breakfast. We always have a big breakfast when we’re camping because there’s much relaxing to do and you certainly wouldn’t want to be trying that out on an empty stomach.

Baked beans, a bit of leftover lamb from last night, baked eggs, mushrooms, toast and coffee. Now I’m ready. Where’s that book I was reading?

A couple of things I think you should definitely take camping.
1. Coffee and stovetop percolator of some description. I don’t care if the rest of your larder is made up of a pack of Woolworth’s sausages, two tins of baked beans, a carton of XXXX gold and a pack of Winnie blues. Get some effing proper coffee damn you. Or tea if you don’t do coffee but don’t try and convince me you don’t do hot drinks.

2. For fucks sake lets get a little more excited than a pack of Woolworth’s sausages and a tin of baked beans (yeah, I know what I said in point 1. but I have to give you something to talk about at your monthly mothers club meetings). If you like boring missionary position type 50s housewife food then maybe this is not for you. You should take time out from the shitass boring daily routine that is your life and watch something like “alive and cooking” or “Huey’s cooking adventures”. Or you could record them both all week and watch them all on Friday night just so you have something going on that is slightly better then melted cheese singles slices on toast and a session on your spirograph. And stop stealing the recipe section from the Women’s Weekly and New Idea magazines at the doctors surgery. Fuck.

3. Cook whatever makes you happy. It’s your camping trip after all. Awww… I’m all soft and snuggley.

A good point about the camp kitchen.
Clean up? What clean up? Everything is wiped onto the ground or chucked into the bush behind you. And then you leave your plates out for the bush critters to clean! Awesome.

OUR DINNER

A big rump steak for all to share (as long as it’s only 2-3 meekish individuals and my boys and I)
1.2-1.5kg rump steak in one big fat piece
a handful of chopped herbs… thyme, rosemary, parsley
3 cloves garlic, peeled and coarsely chopped
olive oil
salt and pepper
use all of the above ingredients to marinate your steak for half an hour or so, and then grill that puppy until you’re happy with the done-ness. Make sure you rest it for 10-15 minutes. It’s a large piece of meat kiddo.

Fried onion
Fry the onion. Sound simple? It should be simple, unless of course you are the one that is simple. Fry sliced onion on a med-high heat, with a splash of oil, until it’s golden brown. Season and voila. Bob is having sexual liaisons with your aunty., it started off as a bit of fun, but then it got serious and they fell in love and got married. Bob’s your uncle*.

Charred corn and avocado salsa
How do you make charred corn? First you get up and go and find your brain in the laundry sink after last night’s mini Oktoberfest celebration you had by yourself. Got it? So you know how to char corn now, yes? Now put that with some chopped avocado (cut it off the cob first or you’re going to end up looking like quite the silly duffer), parsley, basil or coriander. Or all three. Or just two of the above. Olive oil, lemon juice and seasoning will finish it off nicely

Sweet potato and carrot salad
The sweet potato and carrot were whole roasted in the coals, in the foil they greet you in now. Seasoned and dressed with soy mayonnaise. What could go wrong? Yeah, heaps I know. Give it a go anyway.

And coming soon… What to drink when you go camping. Besides water and/or the ocean if you don’t swim very well.

 

 

 

*Bob’s your uncle. This may indeed fly straight over the head of the non-Australian audience out there… and shy of actually getting in a plane and coming to your house to host a seminar on Australian slang (which you will probably not understand anyway and end up hating me for making you feel so dumb), there’s not much I can actually do about it.

My big fat feasting long weekend part 2

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Part two
There was a game of foosball. Now I don’t much follow the foosball and I don’t much like girls because girls are the devil.

So I decided I would watch the foosball grand final, which is actually pronounced f-o-o-t-b-a-l-l… Apparently… And is also more correctly known as rugby league Queenie has just informed me. And what’s my favorite thing about rugby? Absolutely nothing. Except maybe the food. Buffalo wings with celery and blue cheese sauce, sticky belly (that’s pork belly. Not like man who go to sleep with hand on willy, wake up with jellyfish on tummy-type sticky belly), potato salad, and leftover Lainsys birthday lamb kebabs with smoked eggplant hommus, labne, pinenut tabouleh and some other good shit. And we drank stuff that made our faces smile and our heads feel a little less cloudy. It seemed like it helped us talk better too, but I think this was a fictitious reality.

So the reality of the situation was this. I tried to show interest in the game. I asked questions. I CARED. But that game of football was just as entertaining as I had pre-empted it to be. But, before I knew it, it was over… And I had seen a mere five minutes of the game.

By this stage the kitchen had opted for only it’s A-team (Queenie and I). We prepped salsas and sauces and a heap of other great stuff. God made the beer and wine, and once again, we thanked him for it. Liz, a child of the lord, was given the task of bringing forth said beer.
“…and the Lord said-eth to his disciples rejoice my disciples, rejoice*”, Liz would say.
“K”, we replied.

Queenie manned the frier, maybe with a little more frivolity then these situations normally require. I think he may have been under the influence of some of the holy brew Liz had procured earlier. But we ate, the kid lived and everyone was happy.

This night the ghost of Midnight Drunkard Barney appeared again, dragging himself from peripheral obscurity into the realms of reality, for this time I viewed him with my own eyes. It was closer to midnight when i got up for a little wee and maybe a sip of water. I can’t remember exact details, but the one thing I do remember is that shadowy figure suddenly appearing and offering me a dirty martini. I admit i thought about it for a second or two but my better judgement** told me to move on.

Stay tuned folks, part three to follow.

*I think it is quite possibly becoming clear that we did not actually spend this Sunday held close to the bossom of the Lord.

**a mythical principle in my mind