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Its no secret to people that Asian flavours are a favourite in my household. I love creating Asian style recipes and this is one of my all time favourites simply because of the depth of flavour in the sauce.


If my 6 years as a parent has taught me anything about kids and food it is this - kids love meatballs and they love rice so coupled together this is always a winner on the dinner table!


This recipe came about as I often use meatballs as a lunch option for the kids lunches. They love being in the kitchen with me rolling the "balls" when I batch cook for school and I know they will always be eaten when I use them in their lunchbox.


There is one thing I love more than a quick and easy lunchbox, and that is a dinner that has leftovers I can then use for lunches and portion off and freeze.


This recipe came up trumps for me. A simple trick of doubling both the rice and meatballs meant we had a beautiful dinner and I had 4 lunchbox options in the freezer:


Meatball subs - use dinner rolls and fill with meatballs, lettuce and cheese for a delicious sub

Meatballs and Rice - whether it be hot or cold this is a winner in all lunches

"Fried Rice" - my daughters favourite and I thinly slice some cooked chicken over the top

Cocktail meatballs - simply 3-4 meatballs with a food pick and there is lunch!


Prep 20 min // Cook 3 hours (meatballs are slow cooked)


INGREDIENTS

Meatballs

500g of pork/veal mince (or you can use lean beef)

2 tsp salt

½ tsp pepper

½ tsp ground ginger

½ tsp ground nutmeg

1 egg

1 tbs garlic powder

1 onion diced finely

1 tbs diced coriander


Sauce Ingredients

4 gloves garlic crushed

1 tsp ginger

1 cup hoisin sauce

3 tbs soy sauce

1 tbs Chinese cooking wine

1 tbs oyster sauce

1 tbs honey

1 tbs brown sugar


Rice

2 cups cooked cold rice

1 packet steam fresh peas, corn and carrot cooked

½ red capsicum diced

3 tbs leftover sauce from slow cooker


METHOD

Meatballs

  1. Mix together all the meatball ingredients and roll tbs size mixture into a ball and set aside.

  2. Mix together all the sauce ingredients in a bowl.

  3. Place meatballs in the slow cooker and pour the sauce over the top.

  4. Cook on high for 1 -2 hours or low for 2-4 hours,

Rice

  1. Place rice in a pan and stir fry for two minutes.

  2. Stir through the vegetables and add 3 tbs of the sauce from the slow cooker and stir through.

Place meatballs on top of the rice and drizzle over some of that amazing sauce!

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A one pan dinner slow cooked in the oven that has a sauce that is so good you want to drink it and its on the table in 40 minutes sounds to good to be true! Well this recipe is exactly that and from start to finish your meal will be on the table within 40 minutes and I guarantee not even the fussiest of eaters will turn their nose up!


This recipe is an accident. I had one of those days where nothing went to plan from the moment I woke up until I realised at 5pm I had not put on the slow cooker as I had planned to. Instead of having our original honey soy slow cooked chicken (another amazing meal) I instead put a little of this and a little of that in a casserole dish and what we ended up with was soft and tender pull apart chicken with a creamy sauce that was light but had hints of mustard, honey and herbs that with every mouthful you wanted more.


This dish was so popular around our table that the hope of having leftovers for the kids the following night quickly diminished and all that was left at the end of the meal was clean plates and an empty casserole dish.


I served this with mashed potato and roasted root vegetables but looking back this is a dish that can be served with pasta, steamed rice or cooled and used in a pie so next time round I will make double the amount to freeze a portion for the next time nothing in my day goes to plan!


Prep 10 min // Cook 40 min


INGREDIENTS

4 chicken breasts cut lengthwise in half to make 8 breasts

4 rashes bacon diced

1 red capsicum diced

1 onion diced

3 tbs seeded mustard

3 tbs dijon mustard

1/4 cup grated fresh parmesan

2 tbs EDMK Italian herb spiced mix (or a commercial brand)

3 tbs minced garlic

1/2 cup creme fraiche (or cooking cream)

2 tbs cornflour

2 cups liquid chicken stock


Method

  1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees.

  2. Heat small amount of oil in a ovenproof casserole dish and saute the onion, capsicum and bacon for 5 min.

  3. While the onion, bacon and capsicum is cooking, whisk together all remaining ingredients aside from chicken and Parmesan cheese until smooth.

  4. Place chicken in a single layer at bottom on casserole and top with bacon mixture.

  5. Pour over the sauce and then top with the cheese and gently mix through and place the casserole dish lid on.

  6. Bake in oven for 30-35 minutes until the chicken is cooked through and tender and serve with your preferred sides.

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Over the years I have always been told that the best roast beef comes from the best quality beef. It is correct if you use a top quality cut of beef and roast it to medium rare the result is amazing. What is not correct is that you cannot create the perfect roast with a more budget cut of beef.


Top quality cuts of beef are not usually in a families weekly food budget so I went on a mission on how to create the same tender and amazing roast beef on a more everyday budget cut of meat that will give you that OMG moment when you take a bite but not break the bank balance.


I tried various methods, slow cooking in the slow cooker, roasting in the air fryer, slow cooking in the oven and while the result was good, it was not outstanding and the quality you get from a more expensive cut of meat just was not there.


When you research cooking methods and recipes one thing always stands out to me, most cheap cuts of meat are slow cooked AND they have some sort of marinade/ sauce attached to the recipe.


With this in mind I set about creating a marinade from ingredients I would use typically with beef and in making a gravy and presto the result was arguably the best weekly roast beef we have had and the gravy well that is just a whole other story because the gravy was out of this world.


I marinated the beef from the morning to the evening for the best result, however if you run out of time make sure you marinate it for at least 30 minutes.



Beef marinated and ready to roast in a pan with marinade

We have now had this roast dinner on weekly rotation not because of the meat but because of the gravy which started off as the beef marinade, was cooked in the tray with the beef sitting on top of a rack and the juices pouring into the marinade and then thickened up on the stove top.


While the cut of meat may not be the top quality meats you can buy the end result is so good that it would warrant being star of your table at your next dinner party. It is that juicy and tender and cooked to perfection your guests would not be wrong in mistaking it is an eye fillet roast!


Perfectly cooked medium rare meat


And being school holidays if you are away camping this is the perfect camp oven roast dinner to cook over an open fire!


Prep 10 min // Cook 1 hr 20 min (including resting time)


INGREDIENTS

1 - 1.6kg topside beef roast

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

1/2 cup good quality red wine

2-3 cups liquid beef stock

3 tbs EDMK Italian spice mix (or commercial brand)

4 tbs seeded mustard

4 tbs minced garlic

1 tbs Worcestershire sauce

salt and pepper to taste.

2 tbs butter

2 tbs plain flour


Marinade

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

1/2 cup red wine

1 1/2 cups liquid beef stock

2 tbs seeded mustard

2 tbs minced garlic

salt and pepper to taste

3 tbs EDMK Italian spice mixed

1 tbs Worcestershire sauce.


METHOD

  1. Mix all above ingredients together in a jug and set aside.

  2. Place beef in a container and pour the marinade over the top and place in fridge to marinade for a minimum of 30 min.

  3. Preheat oven to 160 degrees and remove the beef from fridge and rest until room temperature.

  4. Pour the marinade into an oven tray and place a rack over the top and place the beef on the rack.

  5. Smear the remaining seeded mustard and garlic over the beef and then place in the oven.

  6. Cook for 25 min per 500g of meat checking the roast 1-2 times and if the liquid begins to evaporate pour a little more liquid beef stock in the bottom.

  7. When the meat is cooked to medium rare based on weight remove from the oven and transfer to a board and cover with foil to rest.

  8. In a saucepan melt the butter over a low heat and then stir in the flour until it turns a light brown colour.

  9. Pour all juices from the bottom of the oven tray into the saucepan and whisk continually over a low heat until the gravy is thick and smooth. Add more liquid beef stock for additional gravy or until you reach your desire consistency.

  10. Slice the meat against the grain into thick slices and serve with roasted vegetables and gravy.

Note: To cook over a camp oven or in a slow cooker cook in the marinade and then remove the beef when cooked and thicken the sauce as per the above instructions.

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