Crunchy Potato Skin with Avocado Cream

Ingredients

6 medium floury potatoes
4 tablespoons cooking oil
6 rashers smoked streaky bacon
2 small avocado
1 clove garlic, crushed
2-3 teaspoons lemon juice
2-3 teaspoons Greek yogurt
2 drops Tabasco sauce
salt and pepper
fresh herb sprigs, to garnish

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC (400ºF).
  2. Scrub potatoes and prick them all over with a fork. Bake in the oven for 1 hour until just tender.
  3. Remove potatoes from the oven and turn up the heat to 220ºC (425ºF).
  4. Pour oil into a shallow roasting dish and put into the oven to heat.
  5. Remove rind from the bacon and grill the bacon until crisp and golden. Drain well.
  6. Remove and stone avocados and mash the flesh with garlic, lemon juice, yogurt, Tabasco sauce and salt and pepper.
  7. Cut potatoes in half lengthways. Using a teaspoon, scoop out most of the potato flesh, leaving a layer next to the skin. (Reserve the potato for making samosas or potato waffles.)
  8. Sprinkle skins with salt and put into the hot oil. Baste with oil, then turn hollow side up and bake in the oven for 25 minutes, basting regularly, until the potatoes are golden and crunchy.
  9. Drain the potatoes on absorbent kitchen paper, then fill the cavities with avocado cream. Cut bacon into small strips and scatter over the potatoes. Garnish with fresh herbs and serve hot.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Source: Breakfasts and Brunches

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Spanish-style Egg and Potato Chip Tortilla

Ingredients

4 large eggs
2 cups coarsely crushed potato chips
2 tablespoons finely chopped Serrano ham
2 tablespoons finely chopped piquillo peppers
freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

Method

  1. Preheat the broiler and position a rack 8 inches from the heat.
  2. Beat the eggs in a medium bowl. Transfer half of the beaten eggs to another bowl, stir in the crushed potato chips and let stand until slightly softened, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the remaining beaten eggs, Serrano ham and piquillo peppers and season with pepper.
  4. In a small nonstick ovenproof skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the egg mixture and cook over moderately high heat until the bottom is set and golden, about 3 minutes.
  5. Transfer the skillet to the broiler and broil for about 2 minutes, or until the top of the tortilla is golden and the center is slightly jiggly.
  6. Slide the tortilla onto a plate, cut in quarters and serve.

Makes 2 to 3 servings.

Source: Food and Wine magazine

Roasted Monkfish with Red Wine Gravy

Ingredients

8 sprigs of rosemary
7 garlic cloves
4 tablespoons butter at room temperature, plus an extra 2 tablespoons, chilled and cut into cubes
2 small monkfish tails, about
1 lb each, skinned, boned, and each divided into 2 fillets
4 oz very thinly sliced pancetta or bacon, rind removed
2 tablespoons olive oil
8 shallots, quartered
1/4 cup full-bodied fruity red wine, such as Merlot or Argentinian Malbec
1/2 cup light chicken or vegetable broth
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
sauteed potatoes and mixed salad greens to serve

Method

  1. Strip the leaves from 4 of the rosemary sprigs, chop them very finely, and transfer to a bowl.
  2. Crush 1 garlic clove and add it to the rosemary along with the softened butter. Season with a little salt and pepper and beat well with a wooden spoon.
  3. Lay out the monkfish fillets in pairs with the thin end of 1 fillet next to the thick end of the other. Spread the rosemary and garlic butter over one side of each fillet, then press each pair together with the buttered sides in the middle.
  4. Wrap the slices of pancetta or bacon around each pair of fillets, enclosing them completely.
  5. Put 1 tablespoon olive oil in a shallow cast-iron pan, then add the wrapped monkfish. Put the remaining garlic cloves, rosemary sprigs, and the shallots around the monkfish, then drizzle over the remaining oil.
  6. Roast in a preheated oven at 400ºF for 25 minutes, turning the shallots and garlic halfway through, until the pancetta or bacon is nicely browned.
  7. Carefully remove the monkfish from the pan, lightly cover it with foil, and set aside.
  8. Leaving the shallots and garlic in the pan, pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the oil and butter, then put the pan over medium heat. Heat the contents of the pan for a couple of minutes, stirring, then pour in the wine.
  9. Let the wine bubble up and reduce by half, then add the broth. Continue to let it bubble until the liquid is reduced by half again. Strain the gravy through a fine-meshed sieve and return it to the pan, along with any juices that have accumulated from the fish.

  10. Reheat gently, then beat in the chilled butter. Check the seasoning — it may need a little pepper, but probably no more salt.
  11. Cut the monkfish fillets into thick slices, divide them between 4 or 6 plates, and spoon over a little red wine gravy. Serve with sauteed potatoes and mixed salad greens.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Source: Cooking with Wine

Chinese-style Spicy Salt and Pepper Spareribs

Ingredients

2 lb Chinese-style pork spareribs
1 egg, beaten
2-3 tablespoons all-purpose flour oil for deep-frying
2 scallions, finely chopped
2 small red chilies, finely chopped

Marinade

1/2 teaspoon ground Sichuan peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon five-spice powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
1 tablespoon Shaoxing rice wine
1/4 teaspoon roasted sesame oil

Method

  1. Ask the butcher to cut the slab of spareribs crosswise into thirds that measure 1-1/2- to 2-inch in length. Cut the ribs between the bones to separate them.
  2. To make the marinade, combine the ingredient in a bowl. Add the ribs and toss lightly. Marinate in the fridge for at least 3 hours, or overnight.
  3. Mix the egg, flour and a little water to form a smooth batter with the consistency of heavy cream.
  4. Fill a wok one quarter full of oil. Heat the oil to 350°F, or until a piece of bread fries golden brown in 15 seconds when dropped in the oil.
  5. Dip the ribs in the batter and fry in batches for 5 minutes until they are crisp and golden, stirring to separate them, then remove and drain.
  6. Reheat the oil and fry the ribs for 1 minute to darken the color. Remove and drain on paper towels.
  7. Soak the scallions and chilies in the hot oil (with the heat off) for 2 minutes. Remove with a wire strain or slotted spoon and place on top of the ribs.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: The Food of China

Asian Carbonara with Braised Pork Belly

Ingredients

750 grams skin-on, well-layered pork belly
40 ml soy sauce
40 ml rice wine
30 grams granulated sugar
1 tsp fine sea salt
1 (40 gram) chunk of ginger
3 garlic cloves
1 dashi bag
480-600 grams fresh egg noodles (of medium thickness)
1 tsp sesame oil
80 grams spring onions
40 grams fried shallots
4 small handfuls of shredded nori
4 eggs
shichimi togarashi
toasted sesame seeds

Method

  1. Cut the pork belly into pieces that are about 8mm x 8mm. Put the pieces in a pan and add the soy sauce, rice wine, sugar and salt.
  2. Peel the ginger and garlic, then place the ginger on a cutting board and whack it with a meat mallet or the side of a cleaver, to crush it lightly. Put the garlic and ginger in the pan.
  3. Put the dashi bag into a cup and add 1 cup boiling water. Leave for a few minutes, then remove the bag. Add 150 ml of the dashi stock (or chicken broth or water) to the pan and bring to the boil over a medium flame. Lower the heat, cover the pan with the lid and simmer, stirring occasionally.
  4. Cook for about 45 minutes, or until the pork is very tender. Check the consistency of the sauce: it should be glossy and sticky. If needed, simmer the ingredients, uncovered and stirring often, until the sauce lightly coats the meat. Remove the ginger and garlic cloves.
  5. Chop the spring onions about 5 mm thick.
  6. Bring a large pot of water to the boil, add the egg noodles and cook until done to your liking, then drain. Add the sesame oil and mix to coat the noodles. Divide the noodles between four bowls.
  7. Spoon the pork belly (with sauce) over the noodles, then add the spring onions and a small handful of shredded nori to each portion. Make an indentation in the centre of the noodles and add some fried shallots.
  8. Crack the eggs, separating the white from the yolk. (Reserve the egg whites for another use.)
  9. Put the egg yolk on top of the fried shallots in the centre of the bowl and sprinkle lightly with shichimi togarashi. Sprinkle some sesame seeds over the pork and serve immediately.
  10. Diner should mix the ingredients thoroughly so the egg yolk and braised pork belly sauce combine to thickly coat the noodles.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Post Magazine