Pear & Goat’s Cheese Toasts

October 31st, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

Pear & Goat's Cheese Toasts_01


— Pear & Goat’s Cheese Toasts (serves 4) —

1 French baguette (medium size)

Some olive oil

3 pears (such as Williams), cored and thinly sliced

150g goat’s cheese, sliced into 8 slices

30g walnuts, chopped

2 teaspoons thyme, finely chopped

Freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon honey


Cut the baguette in half, then slice in half lengthwise. Brash the baguette with olive oil, put the bread onto a hot grilled pan over medium heat and toast until golden on both sides.

Transfer the toasts to a baking tray, arrange with the pear slices and goat’s cheese, sprinkle with the walnuts, thyme and black pepper, drizzle the honey over the top.

Grill under the broiler until the cheese is lightly golden.

Pear & Goat's Cheese Toasts 2






Broccoli & Blue Cheese Soup

September 20th, 2013 § 2 comments § permalink

Broccoli & Blue Cheese Soup_01

The person who discovered blue cheese was very brave.

Broccoli & Blue Cheese Soup 2


— Broccoli & Blue Cheese Soup (serves 4) —

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

2 medium potatos, peeled and cut into cubes

1 little vegetable or chicken stock

300g broccoli, chopped

150g blue cheese (such as stilton), crumbled, plus extra for garnish

100ml single cream

Freshly ground black pepper


Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat, fry the onion until soft.

Add the potatoes and fry for 5 minutes.

Add the stock and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the broccoli and simmer for 8 minutes until just tender.

Transfer the soup to a blender and process until smooth.

Return the soup to the pan and place over a low heat. Add the blue cheese and single cream, stir well to combine. Season with freshly ground black pepper.

Garnish with crumbled blue cheese.




Crème Caramel

September 6th, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

Crème Caramel_01

Crème Caramel and a long nap with my cat, both of them are so nice and sweet.

Creamy dreamy sleepy. It’s the end of summer.

Cream Caramel_2


— Crème Caramel (makes 6-8) —

300ml double cream

300ml milk

1/2 vanilla pod

4 egg yolks

2 eggs

90g granulated sugar

Some whipped cream for serving

Some pecans, crushed


– for the caramel –

100g sugar

2 tablespoons water

2 tablespoons boiled water


Preheat the oven to 160C / 325F.

Heat the double cream and milk in a pan over a low heat, stirring occasionally, until small bubbles from at edge of pan. Slice the vanilla pod lengthways, scrape out the seeds into the cream mixture. Mix gently and remove from heat.

Slowly whisk the egg yolks, eggs and sugar in a bowl.

Add the warm cream mixture into the egg mixture. Gently whisking until thoroughly blended.

Strain the mixture pour into dishes.

Place dishes in a water bath, cover the dish with foil and bake for 40-60 minutes or until just set. Remove from the oven and refrigerate until cold.

Place the sugar and 2 tablespoons of water in a small pan over a medium heat and stir until the sugar in dissolved. Bring to the boil and cook until the mixture is light brown. Remove from the heat and carefully add 2 tablespoons of boiling water into the pan (be careful, it will spit!) and stirring.

Top whipped cream on the crème caramel, sprinkle with crushed pecans and drizzle with the caramel.




Beef and Apricot Tagine

July 31st, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

Beef and Apricot Tagine_01


— Beef and Apricot Tagine (serves 4) —

2 teaspoons turmeric

2 tablespoons paprika

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons olive oil

800g beef, cut into two inch chunks

2 onion, finely chopped

3 cloves garlic, very finely chopped

750ml beef stock

1 tablespoon honey

300g dried apricots

Some couscous

A handful coriander leaves, chopped

Some toasted almond flakes


Mix the turmeric, paprika, cumin, cinnamon, ginger, coriander, salt and 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large bowl. Add the beef and toss well with the spices. Cover and marinade overnight in the fridge.

Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large heavy-based pan over a medium heat, fry the beef until browned on all sides, transfer on a plate and set aside.

Add the onion to the pan and saute until softened. Add the garlic and saute for another 1 minute. Add the beef back to the pan and mix well.

Add the beef stock and honey to the pan, bring to a boil and reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer for about 1 hour and 30 minutes. Add the apricots and simmer for another 1 hour or until the beef is tender.

Serve with couscous and sprinkle with chopped coriander leaves and almond flakes.

Beef and Apricot Tagine_2






Feta, Olive and Sun-Dried Tomato Muffins

June 23rd, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

Feta, Olive and Sun-Dried Tomato Muffins_01

A lot of muffins in a box. To open a box is my favourite thing.

Feta olive tomato muffins 2


— Feta, Olive and Sun-Dried Tomato Muffins (makes 12 muffins) —

Olive oil for greasing

280g plain flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

A pinch of salt

2 eggs, beaten

80g butter, melted and cooled

250ml butter milk

150g feta cheese, crumbled

50g sun-dried tomatoes, cut into small pieces

50g black olives, pitted, cut into halves

Handful flat leaf parsley, chopped


Preheat the oven to 200C/ 400F. Grease a 12 cup muffin tray with a little olive oil.

Sift together the flour, baking powder and a pinch of salt into a large bowl.

Beat the eggs in separate bowl, add the melted butter, buttermilk.

Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and add the feta cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, olives, parsley. Stir until just combined. Spoon the mixture into the muffin tray.

Bake in the oven for 25 minutes, or until risen and golden.




Pork Tenderloin with Cherry Sauce

May 13th, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

Pork Tenderloin with Cherry Sauce_01

Cherry sauce is not just a pretty face.

Pork Tenderloin with Cherry Sauce 2


— Pork Tenderloin with Cherry Sauce (serves 2) 

400g pork tenderloin fillet

Salt and black pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil


— for Cherry Sauce —

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 shallot, finely chopped

1 cup black cherries, pitted

60ml port

100ml chicken stock

1 teaspoon light soy sauce

1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

A pinch of salt


Preheat the oven to 350F / 180C.

Sprinkle the pork all over with salt and black pepper. Heat the oil in a frying-pan over a medium-high heat. Add the pork and cook 4 minutes on each side until browned.

Transfer the pork to a baking pan, roast for about 15 minutes.

Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat, saute the shallot until softened.

Add the cherries, port, stock, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar and a pinch of salt and simmer until the sauce has reduced by half and thickened to a light syrup consistency.

Slice the pork tenderloin and drizzle with the cherry sauce.





Double Cooked Chips

April 20th, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

Double Cooked Chips_01

This chips are so delicious. Good things take time, but they are worth it.

Double Cooked Chips 2


— Double Cooked Chips (serves 4) —

800g floury potatoes (such as maris piper or king edward)

2 litres groundnut oil or sunflower oil for deep-frying

Flaked sea salt

Your favourite dipping sauce


Cut the potatoes lengthways  into 1cm thick chips, rinse well under cold water for 10 minutes and then drain.

Put the chips into a large pan of cold and lightly salted water, bring to the boil. Turn down the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes until just soft to the point of knife.

Drain and pat dry with kitchen papers. Lay the chips on a tray lined with kitchen papers and allow them to cool. Put them in the fridge until cold.

In the heavy-based saucepan, heat the oil to 130C, and add the chips. Don’t over crowed the pan. Fry chips for about 10 minutes until cook through but not over cooked.

Remove, drain, pat dry and refrigerate the chips until cold.

Heat the oil to 180C and add the chips. Cook until crisp and golden. Drain and sprinkle with sea salt.




Red Wine Poached Pear Tartlets

April 10th, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

Red Wine Poached Pear Tartlets_01

Drunken pears for a drunken night.

Red Wine Poached Pear Tartlets 2


— Red Wine Poached Pear Tartlets (makes 8 tartlets) —

4 pears, under-ripe

300ml red wine

250ml water

170g brown sugar

2 whole star anise

1 cinnamon stick

2 wide strips lemon zest

300g ready-made puff pastry

1 tablespoon butter, melted

30g walnuts pieces

30g blue cheese, crumbled


Peel the pears without removing the stalks. Cut in half and remove the core.

Place the red wine, water, brown sugar, star anise, cinnamon stick and lemon zest in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar. Reduce the heat to low, add the pear and simmer for about 30 minutes until tender.

Remove the pear from the sauce pan, set aside to cool.

Bring the wine liquid to a boil and simmer gently until syrupy.

Preheat oven to 200C / 400F.

Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface and cut out 8 circles (approximately 4 inch dimeter).

Cut the pear into slices, leaving the stalk end intact.

Place the pastry on a baking sheet, arrange the pears in the centre of circles. Brash the rims with melted butter.

Bake for 20-30 minutes until the pastry is risen and golden.

Drizzle with the wine syrup, sprinkle with the walnuts and blue cheese.




Tomato Cream Crab Pasta

March 31st, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

Tomato Cream Crab Pasta_1

Waiting for spring too long. I’ve been lazy too long. Eating long noodles.

Life is short. Got to move.

Tomato Cream Crab Pasta 2


— Tomato Cream Crab Pasta (serves 2) —

1 dungeness crab

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 shallots, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 small red chilli, very finely chopped

4 tablespoons white wine

1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes

180g spaghetti

120 ml single cream

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Some fresh parsley, finely chopped


Clean and chop the crab into pieces. Set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a wok over medium heat, sauté the shallots until softened. Add the garlic and chilli, sauté for a further 1 minutes.

Add the crab and fry for 2 minutes. Add the white wine, cover with a kitchen foil or lid and cook for 5-6 minutes. Add the canned chopped tomatoes and simmer until the liquid has reduced by half in volume.

Add the spaghetti to lightly salted boiling water, cook until al dente (follow the package directions).

Add the single cream to the tomato sauce, season to taste with salt and black pepper.

Add the cooked spaghetti to the wok, toss with the sauce. Sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley.




Camembert Cheese Potato Cakes

February 1st, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

Camembert Cheese Potato Cakes_1

This is a regional snack of my hometown Hokkaido.
The combination of butter and soy sauce is very popular in Japan, it works perfectly well with this potato cakes.

Hokkaido must be covered with snow as far as the eye could see now.
Everything is white. I miss the scenery.

Camembert Cheese Potato Cakes 2


— Camembert Cheese Potato Cakes (makes 12 cakes) —

500g potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks

80g corn flour

1/3 teaspoon salt

100g camembert cheese, cut into 12 pieces

30g butter

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon sugar


Cook the potatoes in lightly salted boiling water for 10 minutes, until tender. Drain and mash. Add the the corn flour and salt, mix everything together well with your hands.

Divide the potato mixture into 12 portions, take one portion in your hand, press a piece of camembert cheese into middle. Shape the potato cake into a cake.

Heat the butrter in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Fry the potato cakes for about 5 minutes each side or until they are golden, crisp and heated through.

Heat the soy sauce and sugar in a small sauce pan over a medium heat, stirring constantly until the sauce is thickens and syrupy. Drizzle the sauce over the potato cakes.