Posts Tagged ‘vegetarian’

Roast Vegetable Frittata

Roast Vegetable Cake

What a year 2010 was!  As I reflect on the year that’s just past, I can’t help but feel grateful (despite many, many stressful moments) to be where I am at this point in my life.  My top five unforgettable moments this year:

1. Hong Kong in February  for a girls only weekend.  It was the first time in ages that we had an exclusive “girls”-cursion which included my Mom, sisters and aunt.  Lots of eating, shopping and bonding.  I could tell you more about what we did but what happened in Hong Kong, stays in Hong Kong…

2. Watching the birth of my nephew James – Last July I was with my sister and her husband when my nephew James was born after more than 13 hours in labour.  In exchange? I was given the honour of cutting his umbilical cord (well, more like my brother-in-law was too queasy to do it) and being named his godmother.

3. Teaching my first macaron class – In August I taught my first macaron class at The Essential Ingredient.  I was so worried about making sure my class ran smoothly that I actually took leave off work two days before the first class to practice, practice, and practice some more!

4. Moving homes is one of the most stressful things I did this year.  Especially when the move required two trips using a ten ton truck, a month of packing, twelve hours of moving,  and three days completely devoted to unpacking (we’re still unpacking bits and pieces until today).   There were times when I wondered to myself “is it worth it?”… looking around now, I can say it was definitely worth it.  But let me tell you, I never want to move homes again!

5. Changing Jobs –  I had reached a plateau with my previous job but I was also hesitant to make the change to do something new. With the encouragement of friends and family, I finally decided it was time to move on after four years.  I am extremely excited to be working with a committed and successful team when I get back to work in the new year.

So what’s instore for 2011?

I wouldn’t even want to take a guess because had someone told me this time last year that I would do any of the following: go to Hong Kong for a bonding session, be present for my nephew’s birth, teach a macaron class, move home or change job – I would have told them that they were crazy…. and to think I did all of that in the last year alone!

So whatever happens in 2011, I say bring it on.  If 2010 is any indication – it’s going to be an exciting year!

Roast Vegetable Frittata

Roast Vegetable Cake


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Basmati Risotto with Grilled Prawns

Basmati Risotto with Grilled Prawns (Tomislav Restaurant)

Is it persistence or stubbornness? Maybe both?

When I have an idea in my head, I’ll do whatever it takes to get it (all within legal means of course!) and I never back down from a dare.  Ever.

Every now and again these two traits can get me into trouble.  Like the time I confidently told my sister that I could get ourselves into the Qantas First Class lounge only to be evicted twenty minutes later as we were about to take a sip of our coffees (she never has forgiven me for that).

But more often than not, I try to channel these traits more noble pursuits.  Like finding a way to get a recipe for a dish I really enjoy, or getting a seat at a restaurant that is booked months in advance or experimenting with food or gadgets I’ve never used.

Introducing: Dare me…

This idea was born out of a conversation between me and my husband.   We were having dinner at Tomislav Restaurant the other night and I was blown away with the Basmati Risotto with Yamba Prawns.  “I wish there was a way to get my hands on this recipe.”  I told him.

“I dare you ask the chef for it.”  He said.  “You seem to get your hands on many of the recipes you like.” he added.  I wasn’t able to ask Chef Tomislav for the recipe that night (he had not yet arrived) but I managed to find the recipe anyway.  I made this dish twice in two days.  Yes, it was that good.  The first time I made it over the stove top, adding the chicken stock gradually as you would a regular risotto.  The next day I made the basmati risotto using the thermomix.  I’m pleased to report both techniques work as well as each other.

So here’s the first of hopefully a series of posts called : Dare me.

If you’re looking for a recipe that you really love – then dare me to find it for you. Just drop me an email or a comment at the end of this post and I’ll turn your craving into a fun challenge and get you that coveted recipe!

Tomislav’s Basmati Risotto with Prawns

  • 250 grams good quality Basmati Rice
  • 1000 to 1500 ml good quality hot chicken stock (homemade is best)
  • 125 grams unsalted butter
  • 10 ml soy sauce
  • 40 grams acidulated butter (see below)
  • 2 tablespoons mascarpone
  • Lemon Juice
  • Chopped Nori roll (1 sheet)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped chives
  • 200 grams prawns, chopped

Regular Method

  1. Place the butter in a wide surfaced pan and melt. Add the rice and toast for around 3 minutes until the butter is slightly browned and nutty. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Add the chicken stock (I only used 1000 ml but the recipe calls for 1500 ml) a little at a time and stir continuously for around 15 minutes. The rice will still have a little bite and remember that the dish will not be as creamy as a risotto using regular risotto rice.
  3. Once the rice is cooked, finish the dish by stirring in the soy sauce, acidulated butter, mascarpone, lemon juice, chopped nori roll and chives. Season with more salt and pepper if needed
  4. Grill the prawns and top the risotto with grilled prawns and grated lemon zest.

Using the Thermomix
FYI: I halved the recipe on the Thermomix

  1. Heat the butter at 100c on speed 3 for 2 minutes.
  2. Add the rice and heat for 5 minutes using the butterfly attachment on reverse and speed soft.
  3. Add the stock (I added 500 ml for 125 grams rice but feel free to add more stock if necessary towards the end of the cooking time) and continue to cook (butterfly attachment, reverse, speed soft) for 15 minutes.
  4. Add the soy, acidulated butter, mascarpone, lemon juice, nori and chives and give it another stir for 5 or so seconds on reverse, speed soft.
  5. Top with grilled prawns and lemon zest and serve immediately.

Acidulated Butter

  • 100 grams unsalted butter
  • 50 grams basmati rice

In a pan, melt the butter and add the rice and cook until nutty brown flavour is released. Pass this through a sieve. Set aside.

  • 90 ml white wine
  • 90 ml white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 finely chopped onion
  • 100 grams butter

Combine the onion, white wine and white wine vinegar and heat in a pan and reduce until the pan is almost dry. Take this off the heat and whisk in the butter until the butter is emulsified. Pass through a sieve.

Mix both butters and leave to set in the fridge for around 8 hours. You will have enough for several batches and this lasts a few days in the fridge.

Stumble It!

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