Monday, 23 August 2010

Summer Dinners

Tom Yum Mussels with Garlic and Chili Pasta
Mussels in a Tom Yum Broth with Herbs - Weekend Dinner
The mussels were a spur of the moment purchase from a Chinese supermarket one weekend. I cooked them up with a tom yum spice mix I had brought back with me from Malaysia and tinned tomatoes. Loads of herbs I also picked up from the Chinese supermarket went in - coriander, dill and mint. Served with pasta simply tossed in olive oil, garlic and chili.

Chedder Stuffed Burgers with Courgette Crisps
Beef and Chedder Burger, Courgette Crisps and Green Salad
I stupidly didn't consider the size of my roll when I shaped out these patties. Amateurish mistake! I was so focus on getting the meat to encase the ball of cheese I forgot about everything else. The patties turned out pretty darn good though - oozy melting cheese. Yum. The meat was flavoured with a myriad of different things I found in my cupboard, which is possibly why none of my food ever tastes the same twice :) The courgette crisps were made by deep frying thin long strips of corgettes coated in cornflour.

Full English
Full English - Weeknight Dinner
Well, not really a full English since I decided against eggs and bread but I got the hash browns that I had been thinking about. I won't take any credit for this meal as Stuart knocked it up in about 10 minutes flat.

Bacon Fried Rice
Bacon and Broccoli Fried Rice - Weeknight Dinner
I had some rice sitting in the fridge, a pack of bacon I couldn't find room for in the freezer and a whole load of bits and bobs lying around. So fried rice it was and bacon just goes so well with just about anything, doesn't it?

Sweetcorn Fritters with a Tomato and Cucumber Salad
Sweetcorn Fritters - Weeknight Dinner
Someone mentioned sweetcorn to me in passing one day and I just knew I had to have sweetcorn fritters for dinner that very evening. I mixed up a batch of batter of flour, corn flour and an egg, seasoned it and added some cayanne pepper. I then added as much sweetcorn as the batter could hold. On hindsight I should have defrosted the sweetcorn before I added it to the mixture to avoid the huge sweetcorn clump. Yes, I know it's summer with an abundance of sweetcorn but sometimes I just want a pain free evening that frozen food offers. Served with a simple salad of chopped tomatoes and cucumber topped with olive oil and chili pepper flakes.

Roast Teriyaki Chicken Legs
Roast Chicken Legs - Weekday Dinner
I marinated a batch of chicken legs in teriyaki sauce, honey, black pepper and spring onions overnight. All I had to do the next day was to shove it all into the oven and dinner was ready 40 minutes later. Served with steaming hot rice, of course.

Grilled Mackeral with Thai Inspired Salad
Grilled Mackerel with Salad - Weekend Dinner
The mackeral fillets were quickly grilled (about 3 minutes each side) and served with what I like to call a Thai inspired salad (thinking along the lines of the Thai papaya salad, som tam). Long shreds of courgette, carrot, red onion, tomatoes and coriander tossed in a dressing of fish sauce, chili, lime juice, sugar and garlic.

Macaroni in a Fresh Tomato Sauce with Burger Patties
Macaroni in Tomato sauce with Spinach and Meat Patties - Weeknight Dinner
I love summer for it's abundance of fruit and veg and none makes me smile more than the tomato. My tomato love affair is intensely passionate and if I could, I would probably add tomato to all the dishes I cook. I bought a huge batch the other week and I'm desperate to eat them before they go bad. What better way than a fresh tomato sauce with olive oil, garlic and basil. I also added some spinach to my boiled macaroni and fried up some sun dried tomato burger patties (cut up into bite size chunks) to serve with it.

Fried Kway Teow (Thai Style)
Fried Noodles - Weeknight Dinner
My food is frequently Thai style but never truely Thai. I just like borrowing elements from Thai cuisine - I love the freshness, the herbs, the flavour. This is a lot like phad thai but minus quite a few of the essential ingredients like tamarind juice, crushed peanuts, lime juice, etc. I boiled up some flat rice noodles (which I love over and beyond any other kinds of noodles and know it as kway teow or hor fun), fried up some chinese leaf, thinly sliced tomato, spring onion, shredded chicken, prawns and egg. I added the softened noodles to the mixture before flavouring the dish with fish sauce, oyster sauce and my secret ingredient, ketchup. I guess I'm just a big kid who never outgrew her taste for ketchup with almost anything :) Some rough torn basil leaves went in just before the final toss of the noodles for extra flavour.

1 comment:

Rafleesia said...

My goodness! You've outdone yourself! Everything looks positively amazing...can't believe you go through all that effort! Very inspiring! Can you give me a good batter recipe? I tried to make chicken nuggets the other day and my egg dip coated with plain flour just didn't cut it...