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Tuesday, 28 May 2013

How to Make Sweet Chilli Dipping Sauce

Sweet Chilli Sauce ~ Simple Food


How to Make Sweet Chilli Dipping Sauce (you could also try my Hot and Sweet Chilli Jam)

If you want to be a big hit at your barbecue, this Sweet Chilli Dipping Sauce is a must have, and so easy to make.

This sweet chilli dip has initially a gorgeous sweet taste but then you get that big chilli kick at the end; it will liven up everything at your BBQ or just imagine dipping your Chinese Crispy Spring Rolls.

The great thing about making your own chilli dipping sauce is that you tailor it to your exact needs and taste; if you don’t want it quite so hot don’t include the chilli seeds, if you want it thicker reduce it down more, if you want it more pourable don’t add so much corn flour and so on.

So, I’ll stop talking about it and we’ll get on shall we?

You will need;

3 - Cloves of Garlic
2 - Large Red Chilli’s (whichever chilli’s you like but remember some are hotter than others)
125 ml – White Wine Vinegar (distilled white vinegar will do)
125 gm – Demerara Sugar (you can use white sugar if you prefer)
180 ml – Water
2 teaspoons - Salt
1 Tbs - Corn Flour
28 ml -  Water (for the corn flour paste)

Tip
 When you peel garlic it’s much easier if you crush it first

Sweet Chilli Dipping Sauce ~ Simple Food

Peel and roughly chop the garlic and roughly chop the chilli’s (take the seeds out first if you want your chilli dipping sauce to be a little milder).

Sweet Chilli Sauce ~ Simple Food

Put them in a food processor along with the vinegar, water (180 ml) and salt then process them up quite small.

 Sweet Chilli Dipping Sauce ~ Simple Food
Transfer your mixture to a saucepan, add the sugar and bring to the boil. Leave to simmer on a medium heat for 10 minutes.

Sweet Chilli Sauce ~ Simple Food

Mix the corn flour and 28 ml of water into a paste, add it to the mixture after it has simmered for 10 minutes and stir it in. Simmer for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Sweet Chilli Dipping Sauce ~ Simple Food

That is it you are done.

The chilli dipping sauce will be hot and runny, let it cool down and when it is cold it will become thick and sticky just right for dipping.


Sweet Chilli Dipping Sauce ~ Simple Food


Why not try my Hot and Sweet Chilli Jam it's great with cold meats and cheese



                                                                                                                                                                                

Monday, 27 May 2013

Grilled Watermelon on the BBQ




Grilled Watermelon ~ Simple Food

Grilled Watermelon on the BBQ

If you have never tried this then do, I love meat with fruit, you know, fish with lemon, ham with pineapple, pork with apple and so on. This is very good and goes with most things on the BBQ especially fish.

I did these in the kitchen on a griddle because (guess what) it was raining.
Grilled Watermelon ~ Simple Food


There’s not much involved with this, all you do is cut the skin from the watermelon, remove the pips, cut into chunks and put on the BBQ or griddle.
Grilled Watermelon ~ Simple Food


If you’re doing this on a griddle you don’t need any oil whatsoever, just leave the watermelon on a high heat and they will caramelise and then turn them over.

When it's done it will have a soft caramelised outer but it still retains it's refreshing crunch in the middle.  


Grilled Watermelon ~ Simple Food


Now thats what I call a colourfull plate

Grilled Watermelon on the BBQ











Wednesday, 22 May 2013

How to Make Chinese Crispy Spring Rolls

Chinese Crispy Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food

How to Make Chinese Crispy Spring Rolls

I love Chinese spring rolls; I always have them to accompany any Chinese takeaway that I have.
I have perfected this recipe over the years to replicate the ones that I get from my local takeaway.

I buy the spring roll sheets pre- made because it’s less trouble and they are just as good, but if you want to make them yourself follow this link Spring Roll Sheets

So here we go, for 10 Chinese Crispy Spring Rolls you will need:-

120 gm - Fresh Bean Sprouts
1 – Medium Carrot
50 gm - Sliced Bamboo Shoots
50 gm – White Mushrooms
3 – Spring Onions (thinly shredded)
A little Seasoned Oil
½ tsp - Salt
½ tsp - Soft Brown Sugar
25 ml - Light Soy Sauce
25 ml - Chinese Rice Wine
10 – Spring Roll Sheets
Plain Flour Paste
Veg oil for deep frying


Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food
Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food


Cut the vegetables into fine shreds, about the same size as the bean sprouts, heat the oil and stir fry them for a minute or so, then add the salt, wine, soy sauce and sugar, then stir fry for another minute.
Drain off the excess fluid and leave to cool for about half an hour.

Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food


To make the spring rolls put about two tbsp of the cooled vegetables in the centre of one of the sheets, then follow the next series of pictures.
Use the plain flour paste to stick the final flap.

Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food

Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food

Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food

Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food

Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food

Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food

Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food

Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food

Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food


You can now keep them in the fridge for 2 -3 days until you are ready to deep fry them.
Or you can freeze them.

To deep fry them heat the oil in a wok to 180 degrees C, then turn down a little and deep fry the rolls for about three minutes until they are golden brown and crispy.

Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food

There you have it, great Chinese Crispy Spring Rolls
Great to accompany a meal, or on there own with various dips. 
Why not try some Sweet Chilli Dipping Sauce.

Spring Rolls ~ Simple Food







How to Make Chinese Spring Roll Sheets



This is not for the faint hearted; I originally started to make my own sheets because I could not find any on sale in my town.
They are not easy to make, in fact they are up there with some of the most difficult things I have ever done in the kitchen. The fact that they are so delicate and fragile made it one of the most frustrating things that I have ever done; I have found a local supplier now so I buy them.

So if I haven’t put you off completely here we go:-

For 10 sheets You will need:-

75 gmStrong White Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Salt
200 ml Water

Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl and mix together well. Add the water and mix into a smooth batter.












Put a good non stick frying pan on a medium heat, pour a tiny spot of oil into the pan and wipe it around the pan with a paper towel.









After a couple of minutes take the pan off the heat and let it cool for a minute, now pour a little of the batter into the pan, enough to make about a 
4 cm circle and swirl the pan around to get it near the edges.











Turn the heat down to a low, put the pan back on the heat, take a pastry brush and start to spread the mixture almost like you are painting the bottom of the pan. If it gets too hot take it off the heat and carry on, when you have spread it nice and evenly leave it on the low heat until it has become dry on the top.


Now carefully peal it from the pan, turn it over and cook the other side for about 20 seconds then take it out, place it on a plate and cover with a damp cloth to keep it moist while you while you make the others.
 










Now you are ready to make you’re Spring Rolls or you can freeze the sheets for another time.



Saturday, 18 May 2013

Roasted River Cobbler Wrapped in Pancetta with a Stilton and Watercress Sauce


Roasted River Cobbler in Pancetta

Roasted River Cobbler Wrapped in Pancetta with a Stilton and Watercress Sauce

I’m going to serve up this lovely spring dish with asparagus and mash. You can use any white fish for this dish, but as I have had a love affair with River Cobbler for the past few years, that’s what I am going to use.
I have chosen this particular sauce because the wonderful flavour of the stilton combined with the freshness of the watercress goes so well with the delicate flavour of white fish.
For two people you will need:-

2 – Fillets of River Cobbler (or white fish of your choice)
8 – Rashers of Pancetta (or streaky bacon)
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
A Little Olive Oil

Roasted River Cobbler in Pancetta

For the Sauce

100 gm Stilton
40 gm Finely Chopped Watercress
150 ml Cream (you can use crème fraiche or even milk if you prefer)

Roasted River Cobbler in PancettaRoasted River Cobbler in Pancetta

Use 4 rashers of pancetta for each fillet, put one at a time on a board and flatten it with the edge of a knife to make it wider and thinner. Then overlap 4 rashers and place your fish in the middle and wrap the pancetta around it.
Roasted River Cobbler in PancettaRoasted River Cobbler in Pancetta

Pre-heat your oven to 200 degrees and place a frying pan on a medium heat with a little olive oil and fry the fish for about a minute. Transfer them to a baking tray without turning them over, add some freshly ground black pepper (you won’t need salt; you’ll get enough from the pancetta), place in the oven for 15 – 20minutes.
Roasted River Cobbler in PancettaRoasted River Cobbler in Pancetta


While your fish is in the oven put the cream in a pan on a medium heat,
Stilton and Watercress Sauce
Stilton and Watercress Sauce








when it begins to warm up crumble in the Stilton and stir as it melts. When it is smooth add the chopped watercress and stir it in.
Stilton and Watercress Sauce

I don’t add seasoning to this sauce because I find that the Stilton adds all the flavour that I need.
Keep stirring and reduce to the consistency of your liking, if it’s not thick enough then add more Stilton  but don’t forget about your fish in the oven.

This is Simple Food at its best!

Roasted River Cobbler in Pancetta