November 12, 2009

Beef Burger; Crispy Potato Wedges with Aioli; Healthy Roast Barramundi; Trio of Oysters; Pan-fried Gnocchi; Sage and Prosciutto Stuffed Chicken with Rocket Mash

A few dishes from earlier this year:

Beef Burger
Makes 6:
- 12 Arnott's SAO biscuits (any cream crackers is fine)
- 8 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
- 2 heaped tsp Dijon mustard
- 500g minced beef
- 1 large egg
- Sea salt and cracked black pepper
- Olive oil

Wrap the crackers in a tea towel and smash using a rolling pin, until fine. Put into a large bowl and add the parsley, mustard, minced beef, egg and lots of seasoning. With clean hands, scrunch and mix everything up, divide into 6 and pat and mould each piece into a roundish shape about 2cm thick. Drizzle the patties with oil, put on a plate, cover and place in the fridge until needed (this helps to firm them up). When cooking, preheat a frying pan on high heat, then turn it down to medium and place the patties down, lightly pressing on them with a spatula. Cook for 3-4 minutes on each side. If there are extra patties, wrap them in clingfilm and freeze to be cooked another day.

Crispy Potato Wedges with Aioli

Serves 4:
- 8 medium potatoes (such as Desiree, Nadine, Russet or Coliban)
- 2 cups plain flour
- 2 tsp garlic salt
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp cracked black pepper
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- Olive oil spray

Place potatoes in a large saucepan of cold, salted water and parboil for about 8 minutes. In a shallow bowl, mix flour, garlic salt, onion powder and pepper with a fork to combine. Slice the potatoes into wedges (leaving the skin on) and dip, one at a time, into the beaten egg and then dredge in the flour mixture, turning to coat. Arrange the dipped wedges on a tray, lined with baking paper. Spray lightly with olive oil and bake in a 230°C preheated oven for 10 minutes, then turn them over, spray again with olive oil and bake for another 6-8 minutes, or until golden brown and crisp.

Aioli - Grind 6 cloves of garlic in a mortar with a pinch of salt to form a pulp. Transfer to a bowl and work in 2 egg yolks using the pestle. Start adding 1½ cups olive oil very gradually, a few drops at a time. - It will become very thick. Towards the end, squeeze in the juice of ½ lemon and taste for salt. If it curdles, put an extra egg yolk into a clean bowl and slowly work in the failed sauce a little at a time.

Healthy Roast Barramundi with Oregano and Lemon
Score a whole, cleaned Barramundi on both sides, press 1 tbs finely grated lemon rind and ⅓ cup coarsely chopped fresh oregano into the cuts and inside the cavity, drizzle with olive oil and roast, uncovered for about 30 minutes in a 160°C preheated oven.

Trio of Oysters
Makes 12 Oysters each:
Baked - Season with salt and cracked pepper, top with cheese and a basil leaf, bake until cheese is golden and melted.
French - Combine 1 finely diced shallot, 2 tbs red wine vinegar, 1 tbs extra virgin olive oil, cracked black pepper. Garnish with 1 tbs dill sprigs.
Japanese - Combine ¼ cup mirin, 2 tbs sake, 1 tbs rice wine vinegar, pinch caster sugar. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and ¼ sheet shredded nori seaweed.

Pan-fried Gnocchi
Boil gnocchi according to packet instructions. In a preheated frying pan, saute finely chopped shallots with chopped prosciutto and cracked pepper until fragrant and golden, add the boiled gnocchi and some grated parmesan and pan-fry until crispy.

Sage and Prosciutto Stuffed Chicken with Rocket Mash

For the Stuffed Chicken (Serves 4):
- 4 200g chicken breast fillets
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 tbs fresh sage, chopped
- ¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
- ¼ cup dijon mustard
- 2 thin slices prosciutto, but in half
- 30g unsalted butter
- ½ cup dry sherry

Cut open chicken butterfly-style, place on a chopping board, cover with a sheet of plastic wrap and use a rolling pin to gently beat until thin. Smear mustard on inside of each fillet, top with prosciutto and combined garlic, sage and parsley. Starting with a long edge, roll up each fillet as tightly as possible and tie neatly with string in several places. Melt butter in a flameproof baking dish on medium heat, add chicken and cook for 3-4 minutes until golden, pour over dry sherry and bake for 10 minutes until juices run clear. Remove chicken from oven, cover with foil and rest for 5 minutes, remove string, slice and serve, spooning cooking juices over.

For the Rocket Mash (Serves 4):
- 800g desiree potatoes
- 40g butter, cold
- ¾ cup milk, hot
- 70g baby rocket
- ½ cup grated parmesan
- 1 tsp grated lemon rind
- 1 tbs olive oil

Place potatoes in a large saucepan of cold, salted water and bring to the boil. Cook for 15 minutes, drain and peel away the skin with your fingers - it should come off easily. Cut potatoes into quarters, mash and gradually add butter and milk. Finally, add rocket, parmesan and lemon rind, season to taste and stir until combined.

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