Grilled seafood with garlicky butter sauce while the kids are away

A simple, three-step recipe for a damn fine night with your one and only while the children are absent on school camp.

1. Ship the children off to school camp. It is important to remember that this involves more than just sending your offspring to their place of learning (yes, that’s questionable but we’ll get back to that gripping social commentary at a later date) and leaving them with a packed bag and no intention of returning to pick them up. In fact, you can get into a lot of trouble for that type of behavior. You will need the school that your children are attending to host a student camp and take those little cherubs off of your hands, and you need them to be gone for a few nights at the very least.

2. Once the children have stepped out of the car and the doors have been closed behind them it is time to head straight down to your local purveyors of home entertainment goods, quality seafood and booze and, in that order, get yourself a new home entertainment system – something big… and in colour… and with wireless remote control. Yeah, we’re going all out on this one (or maybe you already have one of these and this step can be omitted), get a pile of fresh seafood – we chose prawns (shrimp), scallops, ocean trout and oysters, and defo get some quality booze of some kind – some ingredients for a mojito plus a decent bubbly for later was a pretty good call methinks.

3. Drink some booze and cook that seafood and serve it with garlicky butter as per following recipe. Pretty simple huh…

Outstanding prep to flavour ratio right there

Get it going on

Seafood, butter sauce and booze. That is a good time


(serves 2-4, depending on how buttery you like it)

250g unsalted butter
6-8 cloves garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon seafood seasoning, we used Lanes Q-Nami to absolutely outstanding effect
1 handful parsley, chopped
Juice of ½ lemon
A little extra salt and pepper if needed
A decent pile of fresh seafood, straight off the coals
Bread to mop up any extra buttery goodness

Sauté the garlic with one tablespoon of butter to get the show on the road. Once garlic has softened, add remaining butter and seafood seasoning and cook out over medium heat until butter start to foam.
Pour lemon juice into butter and remove from heat.
Check seasoning and adjust if necessary.
Get it onto the table with a pile of seafood.
Use bread to mop up any extra puddles of that liquid gold and, if the mood encourages it, maybe even save a little butter sauce for garlic butter boobies later on.
Hey, I don’t know what you freaking pervs get up to when the kids are away…

Paul’s Caul, typos and all… Holidayfoodisthebestshitever part 1

Holidayfoodisthebestshitever (part 1)

It’s been way too long since I’ve been on a proper holiday… proper holiday? You ask, what is this proper holiday you speak of. Well for me it’s not a real holiday if you’re going somewhere to catch up with heaps of people you already know, it’s the anonymity that I love on a holiday, and of course it the food that you eat, that can make or break your experience. Lack of sex, bad accommodation and being locked in a foreign jail are also things that can effect a holiday, but I still think food is at the top.

As I’m extremely lucky to have a girl that love’s food as much as me (by that I literally mean that she love’s food as much or more then actually loving me J ), our holiday pretty much revolves around our next meal. Lauren (this is what I call her, as it is her name) and I packed our car on Friday morning, well I packed it as she did… to be honest I have no idea what she achieved whilst I loaded bag after bag into my car. But regardless of who did what, I looked at my car that resembled a car that was about to make a trip across Australia, when in fact we where only driving 3 hours to a 5 star resort in Bunker Bay.

But I had a plan and in the words of Baldrick “a VERY cunning plan indeed” my idea was to bring lots of food down with me, as well as my latest buy a brand new Webber Q (a beautiful bit of equipment I’ve named Suzie) so being the anal chef that I am (lets all get our minds out of the gutter) I obviously had to bring my own salt, oil, t-towels, tongs, fish slice, two eskies full of meats and seafood… we’re talking sausages from two different butchers, kranski, Cumberland, black pudding and chorizo from Dubrovnik’s and hot Italian from princi’s, t-bones, lamb chops, scallops, prawns and free range bacon. The concept was to cook a grand breaky in our studio apartment every morning then go visit the local wineries and restaurants for opulent lunches then get back to the serenity of our resort to drink much wine, eat grilled goodness and well the rest isn’t for public consumption.

Good plan, nay great plan but then of course me being me thought I’d better include coffee making into my arrangements, so I packed coffee grinder and cafeteria and foolishly sent Lauren over the road to get coffee. What happened next is one of the worst things to happen on this holiday so far, if I wasn’t such a fair and reasonable man then young Lauren would be walking home. Long story short she bought decaf beans and we didn’t realise till I went to make a coffee, which at the time was very well needed. I know it was a terrible as it sounds, who on earth wants decaf coffee? fkn weirdos that’s who! And I am certainly not one of them.

But this crisis averted we have already managed to eat out 3 times in two days, the first was a nice organic café (liars) in Dunsborough where they did produce tasty food but insisted on lying about the organic nature of their food and the homemadeness of their hollandaise, but they where hippies so my fault I guess for trusting them.

The next meal was a 3 course meal at the Bunker Bay resort, the menu read extremely well and the food was cooked reasonably well, but it was lacking a certain something and although Laurens ‘cauli & blue cheese gnocchi’ was alright it was not suberb and  the same goes for my ‘pork belly with eggplant 3 ways’ could of definitely made some thing rude out of the name 😉 , then mains where ‘venison on a beetroot and barley risotto, brussel sprouts’ and my ‘4day marinaded beef cheeks, truffle mash, baby veg’ now for fuck sakes people and by people I mean chef’s, please just engage your imagination just a little and put on a twist on these magnificent classic’s instead of leaving me feel like I have either just eaten in a tafe restaurant or stepped foot out a a tardis or delorian. Dessert had one saving grace a stunning basil and raspberry parfait served with a choc fondant… which was the polar opposite to the flavourless almond tart with dates that I foolishly ordered. All in all I had a great dinner but nothing special when all the ingredients where there

Then after a 2 hour hike on Saturday morning we walked into a small café called ‘Bunkers’ I had been here many years ago and had heard good things about it since, but I have a sneaky suspicion they have heard good things about them selves and act like they are exceptional, and well they just ain’t… I had a taste plate which read really well (hence me ordering it) but when you think so highly of a blue cheese that you place in by its self on an entree taste plate then at least get it to room temp so people can taste it, but their ‘dates stuffed with ricotta, white anchovy and stewed rhubarb’ was surprisly good, it reads like a god damn train wreck of a dish but it worked (rhubarb most likely didn’t need to be there) and Lauren had the best fish and chips she’d had in ages ‘battered garfish & chips with aioli’… chuck in a couple of poorly made long mac’s and that was Saturday lunch.

It’s now Sunday morning and I’m about to go for a walk whilst Lauren is going for a long horse ride along the beach (sounds awful but she seems to like it) and tonight its going to be t-bones with broccolini, local cheese and a bottle of Hensche Hill Of Grace to drink… good times me thinks J



That’s Suzie-Q and the other pic is Pauly looking good in the pool. You pick which is which… G

Marron pasta ala Matty

Mazzalenko (by Matty)

A young mans quest for brilliance I love seafood, it’s kinda like the best stuff ever. Do love a good steak too, Mums lamb roast. Ahhhh… Nana’s potato salad. Ooh… pork belly, my brother steals the show with pork belly, he’s a chef. Getting off track here. My favourite seafood is crumbed squid rings fresh out of the ocean. The rings themselves don’t come out of the ocean, the squid does. And he won’t just jump into your bucket you’ve got to… I’m not dealing with 3 year olds am I? Am I? Ok, when you’re living off the land, or the ocean, river, neighbours fish pond, whatever, you’ve got to make the most of what’s available. As it turns out I’m surrounded by little slices of heaven in the shape of say… like… prawns. Prawns that have been hangin’ out with Arnie, on the roids, took the wrong turn home, ended up passing out in a tanning salon far, far from the ocean……… there I go again. “MARRON”! They’re everywhere. Most would-be punters have a window once a year for a week or 2 during the heavily policed marron season. But with all these dams everywhere I got ’em on tap all year round. You have to get permission from the owners otherwise that’s stealing. There’s many ways to catch fresh water “Arnie prawns” • Snaring, which is wrapping thin electrical wire (piano wire maybe) around their necks, it’s ok, it’s legal. • Scooping, with a “scoop” of some kind, self explanatory. • Drop nets. • Traps and my personal favourite… • The Drag Net, like a big sock, really big, dragged through the shallows by 2 men (women on drag nets are rare but ultra sexy). • Dynamite, crocodile Dundee swares by it. I’m pretty sure you should avoid this method altogether, unless properly supervised by Mick Dundee himself. Personally I’ve never blown little “Arnies” out of the drink. I’ve blown stuff up, been on fire many times, not a good look. For safety reasons I prefer veering away from fire. All other methods produce, in large numbers if the Austrians are there. Dragging certainly produces the best. But only take what you need. I’ve got a lot of mouths to feed and have filled a bathtub once or twice, 3 times (shut the bathroom door over night), laundry sinks, eskies, scaling down to the inevidable 0. One of my most memorable experiences was out of my durestinction. Mick “the fish” took me out in Albany with I think Airsey, the Willow boys and possibly Tinny. It was dark, somewhere between 8pm and 5am. After driving for what seemed like eternity, we rocked up at this magic looking waterhole, with permission of course. Drag net ready the lads started playing scissors, paper, rock for who gets in the drink. Rather enebriated, I put my hand up with a smile. Off with every inch of fabric I entered the water, let me tell you right now, it was colder than anything I ever imagined. The Titanic had it better than me. I was basically a ballerina in the middle of the dam, as the other fellas took turns to walk around on dry land. I became dizzy and disappeared under the surface. 5 strapping young David Hasselhoffs at the ready you’d think I was swam back to shore, resuscitated and fingers crossed given some drugs. Nope, I surfaced to 5 Keith Richards’s, off their faces! I had to get to dry land. Unable to work any of my blue limbs I relied soley on the propulsion supplied by the carbonated drinks I so adore. Once at shore the priority was to check the net, even my tears were frozen, alas our hard work paid off. An old car tyre, 4 cans full of dam water and a large stick! For some reason the lads started quarrelling and throwing shit at each other, fists included. Twas then I looked down and saw a feast of marron hanging of my toes. Completely frozen I couldn’t talk. Mick “the fish” happened to catch a glimpse of my eyeballs frantically moving up and down. He released the Willow boys from a devastating headlock and came to my aid. (‘bout F…KING time) Marron secured, Mick arose to his feet only to burst into an uncontrollable fit of laughter. I wasn’t in a humorous mood. The other 4 stopped fighting and became rather interested in what Mick had seen. Now there was a small choir in front of me singing the “uncontrollable laughter” song. As it turns out there was a small long neck turtle hanging off of ……… me. All I could do was sound the words “get it off”. Yeah real funny. This experience was memorable but in no way pleasant. RIGHTO!! How to cook and eat. ‘It’s quite hard to procure the ever elusive marron if you live on the east coast of Australia (most are sold to the damn restaurants), so, to demonstrate this cracker of a dish, Matty chose king prawns and scallops, which were bloody good. And also account for the photo of this dish containing king prawns and scallops’ G

“Mazza” in crème sauce with semi-dried tomatoes and char grilled capsicum (dedicated to Jim and the fun times we used to have. He’s not dead, just married.) Half a dozen marron, big ones 200g packet of fettucine A big ass red onion Lots of garlic A cask of white wine 500ml thickened cream A jar of semi sun dried tomatoes 2 red capsicums Zest of a lemon, finely grated A bunch of basil Handfuls of baby spinach Pine nuts, toasted Finely grated pecorino, basil leaves and lemon wedges to serve

First, char grill the capsicum by plonking them on the stove, right on the burner, really burn’em all over. My brother showed me this and I spun out, kept asking questions, voicing my concern… I annoy him better than his kids. When black and crusty looking all over remove to a bowl, cover with cling wrap and allow to sweat for a while (have a beer, get stuck into the “goon”). The charred skin should rub of easily now, a few black bits ok, remove stem, pith and seeds, cut into strips and place in a bowl with sundried tomatoes, mix’em round, walk away. Put a large pot of salted water on high heat and bring to the boil. Put 2 or 3 marron in and pop the lid back on for 30 sec to a minute. This will seal and par cook the marron making them easy to shell. Remove to an ice bath and cook the rest. Once cool enough to handle remove head, shell and “poo tube” (dam water is generally muddy so this has to be done) and cut into chunks. Cook pasta al dente according to packet directions, strain and put aside. Get a big pan hot, add a splash of oil and some butter and quickly fry the marron chunks just for a bit of colour, remove and put aside. Finely dice onion, add to pan with a bit more oil if needed followed by 4-5 finely chopped or crushed garlic cloves. Give that a stir then in with a heap of wine, at least half a litre. A bottle of wine will do it, throw a bit down the gullet aswell. The reason I bought a cask is I can stare at those things for hours, memories, sweet memories. Boil for a bit to get rid of the booze, (now it’s kid friendly) add the cream and turn the heat to medium. After the sauce has thickened slightly go to town with (fold in) the rest of the ingredients. Add more cream if necessary and plate that shit up. Garnish with basil leaves, pecorino and lemon wedges. Serve and enjoy. (do remember to chew your food properly)