Thursday, April 25, 2013

Soul food.

I love eggs. 

I love them for breakfast, lunch and supper. I'm not a huge breakfast eater, so my eggs are usually a lunch or supper thing. My favorite supper version for eggs is mashed potato topped with a tomato concasse or creamed spinach and poached eggs. Sooooo good.

Today though, I felt like some super simple eggs for lunch. Two boiled eggs (a bit harder than I would have liked them) with chopped basil from the garden, crushed garlic and herb salt. Toast drizzled with olive oil and  a quite sunny autumn day to enjoy them in. Soul food. 

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Grilled Kabeljou with cauliflower mash

I recently had my brother in law staying with us for a few weeks. On his last day here, I realised I hadn't treated him to a proper cape fish meal, apart from fish and chips at the harbor. 

I popped in at my local fish shop, Fish4Africa, and they had just received some Kabeljou (Dusky Kob) which they assured me had been swimming that morning. I got the littlest one they had and had them gut and butterfly it for me. 

When I got home I stuffed it with lots of fresh thyme and mint (as that was all that was available in my garden), chopped onion, lots of garlic, a little ginger, salt and pepper. 

I tossed together a salad with the odds and ends in the fridge and made up a cauliflower mash to go with it. 

I grilled the fish, which had been tightly sealed up in tin foil, under a searing hot grill for 10 minutes on the one side and 10 minutes on the other. Then I let it rest for 10 minutes in the oven after I had turned off the heat, before opening up the foil and serving the fish. It was perfect - so juicy and tender. I did think that I may have added too much thyme as the flavor of the fish is so delicate. Perhaps I will try parsley next time. 

The caulifower mash was a revelation for me. I had never made it before and was experimenting with it for a new client. I have pasted the recipe below. It is such a fantastic low carb replacement for mashed potato.

Cauliflower mash
Served 4 side portions

500g cauliflower, stems trimmed
1 Tbsp of olive oil or butter
2 Tbsp of low fat or fat free cream cheese
1 tsp of Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper to taste

Boil the cauliflower until tender in salted water. Do not over boil or the taste will be terrible. Drain well and blend the remaining ingredients.

Reheat on the stove, stirring all the time till warm or in the microwave. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Confession and fish cakes!

Okay, so I haven’t been blogging. I have however still been eating (duh, obviously), cooking and teaching some exciting things; and I have so many things I would still love to share which I think would make a great blog post, or a thousand. But I haven’t been blogging.

So here’s the scoop. I suffer from depression. I feel pretty lame writing that down. Especially in a food blog; in a public forum. But a few people close to me have urged me to allow my blog to get more personal. That is ultimately what blogging is about. Personal testimonies.

Well just coming out and saying to the world ‘I suffer from depression’ is pretty darned personal for me, since many people in my life don’t even know this. You see, I am known to be a party girl. Full of fun. Dirty sense of humour. Calm and serene in my work. And many other things. Depressed, morbid, moody. Not so much. That’s because I keep it pretty well tucked away behind closed doors.  Well, today I am throwing open the doors and letting in the air.

What makes me feel even worse about this state of affairs is that my life is peachy. Nothing to complain about at all. Just feel crap, very crap, a lot of the time. So there it is.

I am doing what needs to be done to keep my condition in check and also trying various things systematically to see if I can get over it too. Naturally I am trying various dietary things. At the moment I have been sugar free for three weeks (more or less – okay, I cheated with a Lindt bunny over Easter). I’m still depressed but various other conditions have settled down, so am sticking to it for now. Perhaps it’s time to kick in to the next phase and remove all starchy foods now too. Bleh. Sounds awful. But I guess one needs to knock on every door before ones gives up.

I did a lesson for a new client yesterday which included a Thai fish cake. I haven’t made these for years and I removed all starch for her and I think they taste even better now! You’ve got to try them. Diet or no they rock!

I have been eating all kinds of great superfoods too – I’m munching on an organic superfood trail mix right now... so good! Click here to see.

Okay – so enough with the confessions. Suffice it to say, when I’m especially blue, I’m not that inspired to write. But I guess I need to get over myself too and just do it. No matter how down I am, I still love to cook, eat and share – and do yoga. That’s got to be something to feel good about. 

Aromatic Thai inspired fish cakes
Makes about 20 small cakes

750g raw boneless fish
2 large eggs
1 Tbsp of tahini paste
3 Tbsp of cashew nuts
1 tsp of thai green curry paste
1 tsp of salt
1 tsp of lemon zest
2 Tbsp of lemon juice
1 clove of garlic
1 tsp of fresh ginger
¼ cup of fresh coriander and dill
1 cup of sesame seeds for coating

Combine all the ingredients, except for the sesame seeds, in a blender until smooth. Don’t over blend as a little texture is nice, but all ingredients should be well combined.

Form balls with the paste in your hand (wetting your hands a little helps) and roll them in the sesame seeds, then flatten them a little to form cakes. Allow these to rest in the fridge for an hour to set before frying them in a non stick pan over medium heat until cooked through and crispy on the outside. Use as little oil as you are able to and drain the fish cakes on kitchen roll before serving.

To reheat the fish cakes, bake them in a preheated oven at 200°C until warm and crispy.

For a dipping sauce, season some low fat yogurt with fresh chopped coriander, chilli, salt and pepper.