GARLIC FROM MORGANICS FARM - ORANGE
Another fabulous addition to our collection of organic fresh garlic on top of Gilles in Braidwood and Near River Produce in the hinterland of Port Macquarie, already extensively featured here.
Libby and Ken Morgan started growing garlic for their own needs 20 years ago. Libby and Ken Morgan started commercially about four years ago. It is mainly the purple variety that I personally prefers to the pearl variety as it tends to grow bigger bulbs and just looks better in the pantry! I believe it also tastes stronger, so definitely more for the real garlic (Gallic?...) lover!
SYO - Shuck your OWN - OYSTERS UNPLUGGED
Met Ben Ralston this morning, a young and enthusiastic oyster grower on the Clyde River, a few hundreds miles south of Sydney. Ben and his family have been at it for 140 years! and they produce a mean Sydney Rock Oyster. They have more recently embarked on a new journey to promote freshly shucked oysters in Sydney restaurants, and at your own function, event or party with their "mingling oyster shuckers" - I own the copyright on this one, Ben! - where waiters with a specially designed apron mingles through your guests and offer them to shuck an oyster for each of them under their bewildered eyes, season them - or not - with "embarked" vinaigrette and other condiments - squeeze of lime anyone? What a wonderful idea as an add-on to your regular caterer!
And now, we will be able to buy unopened, untouched oysters from Oysters Unplugged every Saturday from the Everleigh Markets, rather than the tasteless varieties courtesy of the Sydney Fish Markets!
A breath of fresh Melbourne air into the local food scene: enfin! Keep up the good work, Ben & Co!
HUACHINANGO CON TOMATL Y CILANTRO
This recipe is inspired by Jill Dupleix on Good Food, the Sydney Morning Herald authority on all things delicious!
You will need a good size snapper, filleted skin on - thanks to De Costi at the Sydney Fish Markets - lots of EVOO - I recently purchased some "Robust" from ALTO at the Everleigh Markets - plenty lime juice, tinned tomatoes, onions, red pepper, chillies, fresh garlic - from Near River Produce today as I ran out of the Gilles variety!
Cilantro, basmati rice and finger limes for effect - thanks Thérèse! You could add green or black olives as well, but I didn't...
So here we go:
You will be forgiven if you don't know the connection between Jacques Lousier and Chateau Miraval Clara Lua 2011. I didn't know either a few weeks back!
Jacques Loussier is a famous French musician who made his name "jazzeifing" classical music and he is very good at it. The recording featured is one of my favourite pieces of music and I listen to it often.
It is also regularly featured on our local ABC Classic FM radio.
Until quite recently, he was the proud owner of Chateau Miraval in Correns, Var, in theProvence, where he was one of the first to have a so-called "Residential" recording studio. Sting and Pink Floyd recorded there, the later recorded The Wall album.
A rosé is named after them and has won numerous accolades as one of the best "Rosé de Provence".
I found their white wine Clara Lua researching a very unknown grape varietal, Rollé, also called Vermentino by the Italians, which is the basis of the "Bellet" AOC, a small appellation of about 15 wineries around Nice. Clara Lua is made of that same grape, although technically outside of the Bellet territory as well as some Grenache Blanc. Correns is the only village in France where all the grapes are certified organic.
Tasting notes courtesy of www.vintagegrape.net:
"Citrus fruits flavors of white flowers and roasted almonds; Uncommonly full body leaves an extremely long lasting flavor. Serve chilled with fish courses, pastries, or Foie Gras"
Today I had it with Smoked Salmon and a mixed salad of green leaves, fennel, cherry tomatoes, bocconcinis and poached egg. It was not bad either with the goat cheese from Willowbrae Cheese.
And a final note: Angelina and Brad are the current owners...
Aubergines, LEEKs, Haloumi and a few other things!
I have to credit my Facebook and Tasmanian based friend, Dillon Kesur for this recipe.
I am not a vegetarian, far from it, as some of these postson my blog will attest, but I am currently hosting a delicious young French lady, on exchange from the French Film School Louis Lumière, where my son spent a year in 2012/13, and she is vegetarian, which means we had to adjust our menus ...just so slightly.
And Dillon came to the rescue unexpectedly in the form of a FB post with this delicious recipe:
Dillon was born in Fiji and is blessed with Irish and Indian heritage and is very keen on growing his own food, bake his own bread and grace his Facebook page for our pleasure and "émerveillement' with beautiful photos and recipes of his daily experiments and adventures in food, wine and life in general.
A convicted romantic, he also shares with us his love for his family, good music and Leunig cartoons.
Certainly a "gentilhomme" in the Renaissance meaning of the word! We have not met yet in person but it is only "partie remise", and what a party it promises to be!
So without further delay, here is Dillon's recipe and my photos of my own implementation:
Firstly slice and slowly cook 2 onions in olive oil. Adding Salt and Pepper (careful with the salt because haloumi is quite salty). When they are soft (approx. 15 mins) add 1 large sliced leek , 2 cloves of garlic sliced and a ½ cup of chopped oven dried tomatoes.
I used two leeks, crushed the garlic and didn't chop the sundries tomatoes - but I should have!
Once the leeks are soft and cooked, I mixed ½ cup of leftover cooked rice and ¼ of a cup cream. Any other cooked grain or lentil would be nice as well. Stir well.
Comment: I kept the rice and cream, as well as the sundered tomatoes until I assembled the dish
While leeks are cooking, thinly slice an aubergine lengthways. Next time I’ll use 2, because it needs to be the star ingredient. Brush the slices with olive oil, then grill them till brown on both sides.
Comment: I used three aubergines because of the size of my dish and ended up with enough for 8 people - 2 meals for four people - my daughter unfortunately missed out...
Butter and line an earthen ware dish with the aubergines, cover gaps with more dried toms, then spoon in a little of the leek mixture . Layer with thin slices of haloumi, torn bocconcini and a sprinkle of freshly grated parmesan. Build alternate layers , finishing with the cheeses. Fold over aubergine flaps on top (see pic) Cover with foil and lid.
Comment: I used olive oil instead of butter...
Comment: Slice the aubergines and the haloumi as thin as you can, so you can build three layers - I managed only two...
I would use more rice and cream, and I am not sure I would use bocconcinis and parmesan again as I don't think it adds anything significant.
I had the oven preheated at 220C. Baked for 10 minutes then reduced the heat to 170c for a further 45 minutes. Unmould onto a plate carefully after resting for 10 mns.
Comment: The whole thing was ready in 45 mns, but obviously that depends on your oven. Check from time to time and you will know when it is ready - the smell will be a proper giveaway!
Unmould on a big enough plate - try not to burn your fingers in the process. Slice at the table to serve!
Drink a Valpolicella Superiore or a nice Côtes du Rhone and be merry!
Again a great thank you to Dillon for what is essentially our first guest post. Stay tuned for more!
Born in France, well travelled, relocated to Sydney in 1997.
A link here for our non-metric readers: