Graz vs Queenie aka. snapper and prawns vs squid and chorizo

SAMSUNG CSC

Word was passed about the station… the challenge was on.

The day was set. It would be yesterday, in the past.

The protagonists of this challenge would be my fair Jennee’s brother, Queenie, and my self, Grazza McFilthymouth.

The challenge would be set in our kitchen.

The challenge itself? We would each choose four ingredients that the other would have to use in his/her meal. After that it was white mans rules. We would take a trip to the fish shop and buy whatever seafood we desired for our dish, plus we could use any other ingredients we were keen on… as long as the chosen ingredients and the seafood starred like an over made-up, under dressed, pre-teen dancing queen. Rules and regulations were discussed, sweat bands and long socks were donned, steroids were ingested and the Jane Fonda warm up tape was in the VCR and ready to go… all that was required was that someone hit play, which we did, but the tape wasn’t rewound and we didn’t have the privilege of spare time right now so there was no way we could wait for the tape to rewind. It was on with the challenge, warm up or no warm up.

Just like an outback camel race, there were at least three people who were genuinely excited about this event.

Straight to the food.

The ingredients
The ingredients

Team Grazza

Ingredients; kiwi fruit, garam masala, cashews and coconut water. Plus I went out and bought myself a nice little snapper and a kg of un-cooked prawns.

I wasn’t heaps pleased with the choice of kiwi fruit as one of my ingredients. Kiwi fruit is definitely one of my least favoured fruits. It made me think of having fruit salad with the main course, which really doesn’t appeal to me as I am more a fruit salad for dessert kind of guy. But eff it, I had kiwi fruit so dessert with the fish it would be. “I’ll even put some more bloody fruit in there”, I said to self. Self smiled and reached for a mango, I’m pretty sure Queenie was shitting himself right about now… and if he wasn’t, he should’ve been.

I ended up with two dishes; baked whole snapper with coconut water dressing, salad of kiwi fruit, mango, coconut and cashew with kaffir lime, and prawns with garam masala chermoula. You want the recipes? You got it.

A lovely little snapper
A lovely little snapper
The kiwi fruit number was really good. I will do that again
The kiwi fruit number was really good. I will do that again
Damn, damn tasty
Damn, damn tasty

ROASTED SNAPPER

2 kg snapper or something else that is a tasty fish, and leave it on the bone for something different. The meat is so damn moist and delicious…

½ cup coconut water

salt

coconut water dressing, kiwi fruit, mango and cashew salad, coriander and fresh lime to serve

  • Preheat oven to 200C
  • Score each side of the fish (I gave mine 8 out of 10). This helps it cook evenly and peel away into nice chunks for serving. Douse with coconut water to get this coconut water challenge started. Season with salt on both sides
  • Roast the fish for 15-20 minutes, or until cooked through and is peeled easily from the bone
  • Place the fish on a plate that will hold it… in hindsight, a banana leaf would’ve looked hot but, well, that’s hindsight. Pour the coconut water dressing over and serve the salad on the side
  • Well done. Get yourself a beer. You deserve it

COCONUT WATER DRESSING

2 cups coconut water

½ cup castor sugar

1 tablespoon fish sauce

  • Simmer coconut water and sugar until reduced by half. Season with fish sauce. Bang on

KIWI FRUIT, MANGO & CASHEW SALAD

4 kiwi fruit, diced

2 mango, diced

½ onion, diced

1 cup cashew, roasted and chopped

1 cup shredded coconut, roasted (do it in the oven while it’s waiting for the fish. A minute or two should do it. And whack the cashews in there too)

½ long green chilli, deseeded and diced

½ kaffir lime leaf, shredded super fine

1 tablespoon olive oil

  • Combine. There is your salad
The prawns
The prawns

PRAWNS WITH GARAM MASALA CHERMOULA NEXT TIME I PROMISE

 

Team Queenie

Ingredients; chorizo, beetroot, onion, cheese of his choosing. Plus he got himself a kg of nice little fresh squid.

Queenies squid number
Queenies squid number

I don’t know what Queenies thoughts were because I aint no mind reader, but this is what he came up with; Squid stuffed with chorizo, beetroot, mascarpone and mint puree, soured onions. It was delightful and I’m sure Queenie will be happy to jot the recipe down and maybe also a short anecdote about himself and a few drunken carnival folk. Maybe.

We were going to get the score cards out at the end of the night but let’s face it, with a spread like this everyone’s a winner!

HAPPY EFFING NEW YEAR FOLKS! LET’S GET THIS SHIT STARTED…

Queenie, the original

Aah Queenie. The original “what am I going to cook with this”.

For a long time Queenie would pester me every coupla nights or so with a phone call or a text. “I’ve got blah, blah and blah”, he would say. “What can I make with that?” I would give him a few instructions and off he would go, maybe calling once or twice as he went, just to make sure he was on the right track.

A year or two later and he has stopped calling me. Maybe we’ve just grown apart, I thought. Fallen out of love, if you will. Maybe it’s because he’s married now and his wife, Veronica, can cook better than me. Surely not. Many different scenarios were flying around in my head… but here he is. He’s back. He’s returned to me. I am in love again.

Queenies cupboard contains

3 carrots
Half a capsicum
Half a cucumber
Rice
Tin of toms
Ginger
Soy sauce
Half a green chilli
Random spices
Baked beans ( canned )
Bread

Not a lot in the old cupboard tonight fella. I think you should get some natural yoghurt on the way home from work and I’m also hoping sumac is one of those random spices. You’ll also need a handful of parsley and mint from your herb garden (and if you don’t get that by now you probably never will) and you should also put the baked beans back in the cupboard and have them for breakfast tomorrow.

Get me a beer and let’s start. Middle Eastern salad type thing with tomato rice.

Brush the bread with olive oil and sprinkle it with sumac. Cut or tear into largish croutons and toast in the oven, 180C for 10-15 minutes, or until crisp and golden.
While that’s in the oven, cook a cup of rice 1.5 cups of water and 1 tin of tomatoes with the juice. Once it comes up to a simmer reduce the heat to medium, cover and cook for 8-9 minutes. Check rice and cook for another two minutes if it needed, season.
This salad is based very very very loosely on a fattoush salad, which is well worth a go if you ever get the chance. Chop the cucumber, capsicum and chilli, pick the parsley and mint leaves, feel free to add and other leaves you may have hanging around, peel two carrots then shred them into strips using the aforementioned peeler.
Toss that sucker with the croutons.
Dress with olive oil, lemon juice and salt and pepper.
Hit it with a couple of tbls yoghurt and sprinkle the whole sherbang with extra sumac. Please tell me you have sumac.                                                                                                                                                                           Eat it with the tomato rice in the side.
Show her that you can still cook too Queenie.
Power to you brother…….

PS. send me a photo