French Onion Soup

Stuff

  • 2 Tblsn olive oil
  • 3 – 5  brown onions, sliced about 4mm thick
  • Salt
  • 2 Tblsn brown sugar
  • 1 [2?] Tblsn balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 – 1 cup dry sherry or dry white wine
  • 3 cup chicken stock
  • 3 cup beef stock
  • 4-6 sprigs fresh thyme, tied with kitchen twine (Do not overdo)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • 2 Tblsn butter
  • 1 small baguette, cut into 10mm slices 
  • Garlic clove
  • Gruyère cheese, grated

Method

  • Heat oil in a large frypan over low heat. Add the onions and a good pinch of salt and cook very slowly for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent them from catching. Don’t be tempted to turn the heat up – you don’t want the onions to burn
  • When onions are softened and tinged golden, add sugar and balsamic – this will start the caramelisation process
  • Cook onion over low heat for a further 10 – 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly caramelised
  • Add sherry or wine – raise heat to high. De-glaze the pan & cook until almost all liquid has evaporated – about 10 minute
  • Add stocks and herbs to pot with onions. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook, uncovered, until thickened and flavorful, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in butter. Adjust seasoning to taste
  • Lightly grill baguette slices – Rub with the garlic clove. Place toast on top of bowls of soup and cover with cheese – grill until golden brown

Zucchini, Basil & Parmesan Soup

Stuff

  • 1kg zucchini, washed and chopped into 2cm pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely sliced
  • 60ml olive oil
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • 150ml cream
  • 100g parmesan, fine grated
  • 1 cup basil, chopped
  • ½ cup parsley, chopped
  • salt and pepper

Serve

  • Ciabatta – for toast
  • EVOO – for drizzle

Method

  • Heat olive oil in a large heavy-based pot over a medium heat – add zucchini and garlic and saute for about 15 to 20 minutes. Cook until zucchini is soft.
  • Add chicken stock – bring to the boil and simmer for 2 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and liquidize until smooth – I use a wand.
  • Return the pureed soup to the pot, along with the herbs, cream and parmesan.
  • Bring soup back to the boil, season
  • Serve immediately with some toasted ciabatta and a drizzle of EVOO

Serves 4 pax

Stolen from – Riverstone Kitchen, Oamaru

Kuala Perlis Laksa

Stuff

  • 500g of rice noodles – boiled & drained
  • 500g whole mackerel – gutted & cleaned
  • 250g whole white fish (eg flounder, gurnard) – gutted & cleaned
  • 125g onion – rough chopped
  • 1 tspn dried chili flakes – reduce if you want less hot
  • 12g shrimp paste
  • 50g galangal – rough chopped
  • 3 sprigs Vietnamese Mint – leaves only
  • 50g Tamarind liquid
  • 1 litre water – I use then water from boiling the fish (drained
  • salt to taste
  • 4 eggs – boiled and halved **
  • 10g fresh chillies – chopped
  • 2-3 sprigs parsley or Cilantro – sliced ​
  • ​1 small cucumber – fine julienne

Method

  • Boil the mackerel & white fish until cooked. Separate the flesh from the bones.
  • In food processor blend together onion, galangal, dried chili & shrimp paste – Put into a large pot
  • In food processor blend the fish flesh – put in the same pot.
  • In food processor grind the fish bones until crushed – strain thru a sieve (use some of the 1 litre of water to get all the goodness) – put in the same pot.
  • Add the remaining water to the pot – mix well
  • Add Vietnamese Mint & Tamarind – season.
  • Bring to a boil and remove from heat.

Serve

  • In a bowl
  •  – serving of noodles (pref chopped into short length)
  •  – pour over hot laksa
  •  – decorate with eggs, fresh chillies, parsley/cilantro & cucumber julienne

For the perfect boiled egg

  • eggs in small pot
  • enough cold water to cover the eggs
  • lid on
  • bring to boil – turn heat off immediately
  • sit for 10 minutes – do not remove the lid
  • remove eggs from hot water – plunge into cold water until cool

Hot & Sour Prawn Head Broth

Stuff
Prawn Broth

  • 4 birdseye chillies, deseeded & rough chopped
  • 2 or 3 long red chillies, deseeded & rough chopped
  • 5 cm piece ginger, skinned & chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, rough chopped
  • 4-5 shallots, rough chopped
  • 1 stick lemongrass, fine chopped
  • 1 bunch coriander root, fine chopped
  • 2 Tbspn shrimp paste [maybe less – maybe fried off first]
  • 75 mil peanut oil
  • Heads & shells from 20 or so Prawns (not the front legs section)
  • 3 Tbspn tamarind
  • 1 litre shellfish or fish stock
  • 2-3 tomatoes, peeled, diced
  • 4-5 kaffir lime leaves, ripped
  • 2 tspn fish sauce
  • juice from 1 lime
  • juice from ½ lemon
  • 2 Tbspn palm sugar, crushed

Prawn Dumplings

  • 10 peeled prawns
  • 1 spring onion, fine chopped
  • 1 tspn sesame oil
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
  • 1 cm piece ginger, grated
  • 2 tspn fish sauce
  • 1 egg white
  • pinch sugar

Skewered Prawns

  • 12 prawns
  • 25 ml sesame oil
  • salt, to taste

Crispy Prawn Legs

  • Approx 1/2 litre vegetable oil, for deep frying
  • 20 front prawn leg sections (carefully cut off the prawn body leaving the “chest” holding the legs together)
  • ½ cup plain flour
  • 1 Tbspn salt
  • 1 Tbspn ground pepper

To Finish 

  • ½ cup roasted peanuts
  • ½ cup fried shallots
  • 12 leaves Vientamese mint
  • ½ cup coriander leaves
  • 1 cup bean shoots
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and juilienned
  • 4 lime cheeks

Method

Prawn Broth

  • In a food processor combine the chillies, ginger, garlic, shallots, lemongrass, coriander root & shrimp paste – blend to a fine paste (the finer the better)
  • In a large pot heat the peanut oil – sauté the paste and prawn heads/shells for 5-6 minutes. Stir regularly to ensure doesn’t burn
  • Add the tamarind, stock, tomatoes & kaffir lime leaves – being to boil and simmer for 30 minutes
  • Strain thru fine sieve & return to the pot – add fish sauce, lime juice, lemon juice palm sugar – bring to boil and simmer for 5 minutes until sugar is dissolved
    [Note – Matt’s recipe strained last thing – more prawn shell contact may enhance flavour]

Prawn Dumplings

  • In a food processor combine 1/2 the prawns, spring onion, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, fish sauce, egg white & sugar – process to a fine smooth mince (only 30 seconds or so).
  • Add the remaining prawns and process briefly so added prawn meat still course (only a few seconds)

Skewered Prawns

  • Skewer the prawns. Brush with sesame oil & season with salt. Fry in hot pan until just cooked

Crispy Prawn Legs

  • Heat vegetable oil approx 20 mm deep in a wok type frying pan to 200° c
  • In a plastic bag combine the flour, salt & ground pepper – add the prawn leg & shake to coat well. Remove excess flour.
  • Cook in the oil until crispy, drain on paper towel

To Finish & Serve

  • Bring the broth to a simmer. Quenelle the prawn dumplings with a desert spoon – drop into the hot broth – cook for 4 minutes or so until the dumpling float
  • In large noodle large – arrange the prawn dumplings & skewered prawns – garnish with roasted peanuts, fried shallots, Vietnamese mint, coriander leaves, bean shoots, juilienned red chilli, lime cheeks & finally on to the crispy prawn legs
  • Serve with a jug of hot broth on the side – or pour the hot broth over immediately before serving

 

“Stolen” from Matt Sinclair – Masterchef Aussie 2016

Tomato Soup

Stuff

  • 1-1¼kg ripe tomatoes, cut into quarters & core removed
  • 1 medium onion, fine diced
  • 1 small carrot, fine diced
  • 1 celery stick, fine diced
  • 2 tbspn olive oil
  • 1 tbspn tomato purée
  • 1 tspn of sugar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1.2 litres hot vegetable stock
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method

  • Heat olive oil in a large pot, add the onion, carrot & celery – cook over low heat until soft and faintly coloured (about 10 minutes) stir regularly to avoid sticking/burning,
  • Add the tomato puree and stir to fully coat the veggies. Add the tomatoes, sugar, bay leaves – stir again, put on a lid and “stew” the until the tomatoes have broken down (about 10 minutes) stir regularly to avoid sticking/burning.
  • Add the stock and bring to the boil – simmer for 25 minutes – stir regularly to avoid sticking/burning.
  • Remove the bay leaves – Wand or blend until smooth

Southern Seafood Curry Soup

Stuff

Curry Paste

  • 1 tbspn shrimp paste, baked in tin foil @ 200° for 10 minutes
  • 1 tspn coriander seeds
  • 1 tspn cumin seeds
  • 2 sticks of lemon grass, fine chopped
  • 4 dried chillies
  • 5-6 cloves garlic, fine diced
  • 3 shallots, fine diced
  • 2 cm length of fresh turmeric, fine diced
  • 1/2 tspn salt
  • 50 ml vege oil
  • 1 cake Palm sugar – crushed or grated
  • 1 stick lemon grass, bruised
  • 300-400 fresh fish fillet
  • 500 ml coconut cream
  • 500 ml fish stock
  • 1/2 tspn fish sauce
  • 5-6 kaffir lime leaves, fine diced
  • 50 ml lime juice

Method

  • Combine all the curry paste stuff in a mortar & pestle – make a smooth paste
  • Heat oil in pan – fry the curry paste until fragrant (approx 5 minutes)
  • Add the palm sugar and lemongrass stick – stir until sugar dissolves
  • Add the coconut cream & fish stock – bring to boil
  • Add the fish sauce & kaffir lime leaves
  • Add the fish – gently poach (approx 5 minutes)
  • Add the lime juice – stir gently to combine

Quantities

  • 4 entrée – 2 main

Variations

  • Any other seafood – tua tua, mussels, scollops, prawns, etc.
  • Combination seafood – just ensure you put into poach consistant with different cooking times

Stolen from Peter Gawron – Saffron, Arrowtown

Lobster Bisque

Stuff

  • 1 or 2 lobsters [or 3-4 crabs]
  • 3/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped onion
  • 3/4 cup coarsely chopped celery, including leaves
  • 3/4 cup coarsely chopped carrot
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 3-4 sprigs flat-leaf parsley – plus extra for garnish
  • 1/2 teaspoon saffron
  • 3 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup cream sherry
  • 1 tbspn freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbspn cup cornstarch

Method

  • Cook lobsters immersed in boiling water – simmer for 20 minutes. Do not overcook. Remove lobsters – save all the water
  • Clean the meat off the lobster – retain everything else
  • 5 cups of lobster water in stockpot – put on low heat. Place shells in stockpot include all roe and tomalley. Add 1/2 cup tomato paste. Simmer on low heat for 1 1/2 hours – stir occasionally. Do not overheat. Sieve (should be approx 8 cups).
  • 2 cups of lobster water in stockpot – put on high heat. Add onions, celery, carrots, thyme, parsley and saffron. Boil on high heat for 30 minutes – stir every 5 minutes. Add 1/4 cup tomato paste and black pepper. Turn down heat and simmer 30 minutes – stir every 5 minutes. Sieve & add to the lobster stock.
  • Put combined stocks on medium heat. Add heavy cream slowly, using whisk to blend. Add sherry – Simmer on low heat for 20 minutes. Mix cornstarch with 1/4 cup water and slowly add to bisque with whisk – Simmer on low heat for another 20 minutes.
  • Place lobster meat in bowl and add bisque. Garnish with parsley

Quantities

  • Approx 6 cups

Variations

  • Use crab or prawn bodies
  • A fresh red chilli in with the onions for a little kick