Recipe: Boeuf en Croute pastry

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Boeuf en Croute done with cheese and herb pastry with red wine sauce. finished with potato, baby carrots and beans on the side with beef gravy.

Ingredients:

  • 604 grams of beef tenderloin
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • Olive oil, for drizzling
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 454 grams mushrooms, very finely chopped
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme, leaves picked
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 cup Madeira
  • 2 tablespoons creme fraiche
  • Handful chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • 2 x 453 grams packages puff pastry or frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • potato, baby carrot and beans (optional)

Directions:

1. Season the beef with salt, and pepper. Melt a tablespoon of butter with a drizzle of the olive oil in a sauté pan until hot, then sear the beef on all sides. Remove from the pan to a board, and let cool completely, then wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate.

2. In the same pan as the beef, prepare the mushroom duxelles: Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and fry the shallots until translucent. Add the mushrooms, thyme, and bay leaf, and cook until very tender. Pour over the Madeira, and bring to a boil, and cook until all the liquid has evaporated. Add the creme fraiche and cook down to a very thick paste. Season the mixture with salt, and pepper. Stir through the chopped parsley.

3. Roll out one block of pastry to a rectangle large enough to fit the meat with a roomy border. Place on a baking sheet. Remove the fillet from the refrigerator, and unwrap. Spoon the mushroom mixture into the center of the pastry and set the meat on top. Roll out the second sheet to fit over the whole fillet generously. In a small bowl, beat together the egg and 1 teaspoon water. Brush the margins of the bottom pastry with egg wash, then drape the second sheet over, pressing to seal well. Trim the edge to a 1-inch border. Crimp the edges with your fingers. Refrigerate until ready to bake.

4. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

5. Brush the whole surface of the pastry with egg wash and make two slits in the top with a knife to allow steam to escape. Bake 15 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 400 degrees F, and continue to bake 20 minutes, depending on how well you like your meat done. Remove from the oven and let stand about 10 minutes before serving in slices.

6. Serve with potato, baby carrots beans and gravy if desired.

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Recipe: Rump Steak

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Grilled matured medium rump steak, stacked on butter cream potato mash, served with sauted Dijon mustard creme mushrooms and salad on the side.

Ingredients (salad):

  • Lettuce
  • Tomatoes
  • Cucumbers
  • Cheese (optional)
  • Olives (optional)

Ingredients (rosemary garlic butter lamb chops & sautéed Dijon mustard crème mushrooms):

  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 4 x 250g rump steak
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 113 grams of mixed mushrooms, sliced
  • 30 – 44 millilitres of dijon mustard, to taste
  • 2/3 cup white wine
  • 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream

Ingredients (butter cream potato mash):

.       680 grams gold potatoes, peeled and quartered length-wise

.       1/2 teaspoon salt

.       4 tablespoon heavy cream

.       2 tablespoon butter

.       1 tablespoon milk

.       Salt and Pepper

.       Potato masher

Directions:

  1. Prepare your salad. You can make it according to your taste (ie. Greek salad or your personal combination of fresh vegetables and fruits). Leave the salad on the side, ready to place on plates for supper.
  2. Put potatoes into a saucepan. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt. Add water until potatoes are covered. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered, 15-20 minutes, or until done – a fork can easily be poked through them.
  3. Meanwhile, you can grill the rump steaks. Chop garlic. Pat steaks dry and season with salt and pepper. In a 12-inch heavy skillet, heat oil over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking and sear steak 3 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic to the skillet, stir and cook for 2 minutes.  Then add the mushrooms, salt and pepper, and keep stirring frequently and cook for 3 minutes longer, or until the mushrooms begin to cook down slightly.
  5. Turn steak over and sear 2 minutes more for medium-rare. Remove the rump steaks and mushrooms from the skillet to a warm plate and keep warm.
  6. Add the white wine to the skillet, keeping heat at medium-high, and stirring to combine any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.  Reduce the wine by half, then add the chicken stock to the pan, and again reduce the mixture by half.
  7. Add 30 millilitre of dijon mustard and the cream to the skillet, stir to combine and return the rump steaks and mushrooms to the pan.  Cook for 3 – 4 minutes or until slightly thickened, then add the Parmesan cheese to the skillet and stir to blend.
  8. Taste and test the sauce and add the additional 14 millilitre of dijon mustard, if desired. (Note:  If the sauce is a little too thin for your preference, mix 2 teaspoons of cornstarch in a small bowl with a little cold water and blend into the sauce.  Stir constantly until the sauce thickens to your liking.)
  9. Add garlic, rosemary, lemon juice, and stock to a skillet and deglaze these contents over high heat, stirring and scraping up brown bits for 1 minute. Thereafter, whisk in butter.

10.Pour sauce over steaks.

11.By now, the potatoes should be done. Warm the cream and melt the butter, together. This can either be done in the microwave or in a pan on the stove. Drain water from potatoes. Put hot potatoes into a bowl. Add cream and melted butter. Use potato masher to mash potatoes until well mashed. Use a strong spoon to beat further, adding milk to achieve the consistency you desire. (Do not over-beat or your potatoes will get gluey.) Salt and pepper to taste.

Recipe: Shrimp madras curry with Durban inspired masala

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Prawn madras curry with special Durban masala! Served with basmati rice topped with coriander and home made naan bread.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 pounds jumbo or large shrimp, peeled, deveined, and rinsed
  • 1 teaspoon Curry Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Garam Masala
  • 24 fresh kari leaves, cut into chiffonade; or 1 tablespoon dried kari leaves, coarsely powdered
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk, fresh or canned
  • Coarse salt to taste
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 bunch watercress, trimmed, rinsed, and patted dry
  • basmati rice (proportion depends on amount you like having with curry)

Ingredients (naan bread):

  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling, see Cook’s Note*
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 tablespoons plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kalonji (nigella seeds), optional, see Cook’s Note**
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds, optional, see Cook’s Note**
  • Melted butter for slathering on the finished naans
  • Coarse sea salt for sprinkling

Directions:

  1. In a large glass, dissolve the dry yeast and 1 teaspoon sugar with 3/4 cup warm water. Let it sit on your counter until it’s frothy, about 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, sift the flour, salt, remaining 1 teaspoon of sugar and baking powder into a large, deep bowl.
  3. Once the yeast is frothy, add the yogurt and the olive oil into the glass, and stir to combine. Pour the yogurt mixture into the dry ingredients and add the kalonji and fennel seeds, if using, and gently mix the ingredients together with a fork. When the dough is about to come together, use your hands to mix. It will feel like there isn’t enough flour at first, but keep going until it transforms into a soft, slightly sticky and pliable dough. As soon as it comes together, stop kneading. Cover the dough with plastic wrap or a damp tea towel and let it sit in a warm place for 2 to 4 hours.
  4. Meanwhile, prepare your shrimp madras curry. Place the shrimp in a bowl. Add the Curry Powder, Garam Masala, kari leaves, garlic, and oil and crumble over shrimps.
  5. Heat a frying pan over high heat until very hot. Add the shrimps and sear, shaking and tossing, for 1 minute, or until they begin to turn pink and curl up. Whisk the tomato paste into the coconut milk and add to the shrimps. Continue to cook until the sauce is reduced to a glaze and the shrimps are cooked through, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and lemon juice and turn off the heat.
  6. Spread the watercress on a plate and mound the shrimps on top of it. Keep warm until serving time.
  7. 20 minutes should have passed now. Now cook the basmati rice, and once cooked, keep warm.
  8. Once 4 hours has passed since laying out the naan dough, start preparing to roll the naan. When you’re ready to roll, make sure you have two bowls on your counter: one with extra flour in it, and one with water. The dough will be extremely soft and sticky. Separate the dough into 6 equal portions and lightly roll each one in the bowl of extra flour to keep them from sticking to each other.
  9. Shape the naan. Using a rolling pin, roll each piece of dough into a teardrop shape, narrower at the top than at the bottom. Once you’ve formed the general shape, you can also pick it up by one end and wiggle it; the dough’s own weight will stretch it out a little. Repeat this method with the rest of the dough.
  10. Warm a large cast-iron skillet over high heat until it’s nearly smoking. Make sure you have a lid large enough to fit the skillet and have a bowl of melted butter at the ready.
  11. Dampen your hands in the bowl of water and pick up one of your naans, flip-flopping it from one hand to the other to lightly dampen it. Gently lay it in the skillet and set your timer for 1 minute. The dough should start to bubble.
  12. After about 1 minute, flip the naan. It should be blistered and somewhat blackened, don’t worry – that’s typical of traditional naan! Cover the skillet with the lid and cook 30 seconds to 1 minute more.
  13. Remove the naan from the skillet, brush with a bit of butter and sprinkle with a little coarse sea salt. Place the naan in a tea towel-lined dish. Repeat with the rest of the naans and serve.

Recipe: Prawns on a bed of caramelized pineapples

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Prawns with orange sauce on a bed of caramelized pineapples, scented in vanilla finished with olive oil and sherry vinegar vinaigrette.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pineapple
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 24 tiger prawns (raw)
  • lettuce (freshly washed)
  • salt and pepper for seasoning (optional)
  • Olive oil
  • Sherry vinegar
  • Vanilla

Directions:

  1. Core and peel pineapple. Slice it lengthwise into eighths.
  2. Heat butter in a large nonstick skillet over high heat. Coat pineapple wedges with sugar; place in hot pan. Cook, turning once and shaking pan often, until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes.
  3. While waiting for the pineapples, cook prawns so long. Bring 2.5 litres of water to the boil, add 2 tablespoons of sea salt.
Add prawns to boiling water. Cook for 3-4 minutes.
  4. Prawns are done when they float to the top of the water. To test, take out a prawn and hold it to the light, it is cooked when the flesh has shrunk from the shell slightly and the prawn looks translucent.
  5. When they’re done, remove them from the boiling water and place in a big bowl of iced water to cool them.
  6. Now the pineapples should be ready. Remove pineapples from pan, then stir 3 tablespoons water into pan, and heat briefly. Place washed lettuce on plate, then place pineapples on top of them. Drizzle sauce over pineapples. Place prawns on top of caramelized pineapples, and season with salt, pepper, olive oil, and sherry vinegar as desired.

Recipe: Grilled marinated garlic lamb

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Grilled marinated rosemary garlic butter lamb chops, stacked on butter cream potato mash, served with sautéed Dijon mustard crème mushrooms and salad on the side.

Ingredients (salad):

  • Lettuce
  • Tomatoes
  • Cucumbers
  • Cheese (optional)
  • Olives (optional)

Ingredients (rosemary garlic butter lamb chops & sautéed Dijon mustard crème mushrooms):

  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 4 lamb shoulder chops (each about 3/4 inch thick)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 113 grams of mixed mushrooms, sliced
  • 30 – 44 millilitres of dijon mustard, to taste
  • 2/3 cup white wine
  • 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream

Ingredients (butter cream potato mash):

  • 680 grams gold potatoes, peeled and quartered length-wise
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Potato masher

Directions:

  1. Prepare your salad. You can make it according to your taste (ie. Greek salad or your personal combination of fresh vegetables and fruits). Leave the salad on the side, ready to place on plates for supper.
  2. Put potatoes into a saucepan. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt. Add water until potatoes are covered. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered, 15-20 minutes, or until done – a fork can easily be poked through them.
  3. Meanwhile, you can grill the lamb chops. Chop garlic. Pat lamb dry and season with salt and pepper. In a 12-inch heavy skillet, heat oil over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking and sear lamb 3 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic to the skillet, stir and cook for 2 minutes.  Then add the mushrooms, salt and pepper, and keep stirring frequently and cook for 3 minutes longer, or until the mushrooms begin to cook down slightly.
  5. Turn lamb over and sear 2 minutes more for medium-rare. Remove the lamb chops and mushrooms from the skillet to a warm plate and keep warm.
  6. Add the white wine to the skillet, keeping heat at medium-high, and stirring to combine any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.  Reduce the wine by half, then add the chicken stock to the pan, and again reduce the mixture by half.
  7. Add 30 millilitre of dijon mustard and the cream to the skillet, stir to combine and return the  lamb chops and mushrooms to the pan.  Cook for 3 – 4 minutes or until slightly thickened, then add the Parmesan cheese to the skillet and stir to blend.
  8. Taste and test the sauce and add the additional 14 millilitre of dijon mustard, if desired. (Note:  If the sauce is a little too thin for your preference, mix 2 teaspoons of cornstarch in a small bowl with a little cold water and blend into the sauce.  Stir constantly until the sauce thickens to your liking.)
  9. Add garlic, rosemary, lemon juice, and stock to a skillet and deglaze these contents over high heat, stirring and scraping up brown bits for 1 minute. Thereafter, whisk in butter.

10.Pour sauce over lamb.

11.By now, the potatoes should be done. Warm the cream and melt the butter, together. This can either be done in the microwave or in a pan on the stove. Drain water from potatoes. Put hot potatoes into a bowl. Add cream and melted butter. Use potato masher to mash potatoes until well mashed. Use a strong spoon to beat further, adding milk to achieve the consistency you desire. (Do not over-beat or your potatoes will get gluey.) Salt and pepper to taste.