PORTERHOUSE WITH HOMEMADE KECAP MANIS & ASIAN PICKLES
You could just use ordinary shop-bought kecap manis to
marinade the meat, but making your own is easy, has a far more elegant
fragrance and is, above all, such a great brag! Flavouring kecap manis is an
intensely personal thing, so try this version now and next time cook the sauce
down with crushed, split lemongrass and a shredded lime leaf.
4 x 200 g porterhouse steaks, trimmed of excess fat
120 ml kecap manis (see below), or a good-quality
200 g (about 1 cup) soft brown sugar or 250 g (about 1
1/2 cups) grated palm sugar
310 ml soy sauce (or tamari for a gluten-free option)
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed with the back of a
2 slices of fresh galangal (or ginger)
1/2 star anise
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 star anise
2 teaspoons salt
115 g (1/2 cup) caster sugar
250 ml (1 cup) rice wine vinegar
1 carrot, very finely sliced
150 g daikon radish, sliced super-finely in rounds
8–10 radishes, quartered
To make the kecap manis, combine the sugar and 3
tablespoons of water in a small saucepan and heat gently to dissolve the sugar.
Jiggle the pan occasionally to encourage the dissolving. Once it’s dissolved,
let the syrup bubble away for a couple of minutes, then remove the pan from the
heat and stir in the soy sauce, garlic, galangal and star anise. Stir to
combine. Place over medium heat and bring to the boil, stirring constantly.
Lower the heat and cook at the gentlest simmer for 10
minutes. At the end of this time the sauce should be syrupy and not quite as
thick as a commercial kecap manis. Remember that it will thicken more as it
cools. Remove from the heat to cool. Once cool, remove the garlic cloves and
bottle the sauce in a sterilised jar. Ideally, leave the flavours to mellow
overnight before using. This kecap manis will keep in the fridge for 2 weeks.
Combine the pickling liquid ingredients in a smallish
saucepan with 250 ml of water and bring to a gentle boil. Simmer for a couple
of minutes, then remove from the heat and set aside to cool. Once it has cooled
completely, add the pickling veggies and leave for at least 4–5 hours to
Marinate the steaks in the kecap manis for at least 3–4
hours or, preferably, overnight. If using the homemade recipe, make sure your
kecap manis is completely cold before you use it. Bring the meat to room
temperature before cooking.
When you are ready to eat, heat the barbecue or a heavy
frying pan over medium heat. Cook the steaks for about 3 minutes on each side.
They will blacken with the sweetness of the marinade but you don’t want to let
them char too much, so I suggest taking the Heston approach to steak and keep turning
them every 30 seconds! Once cooked to your liking (rare is good), leave them to
rest for 5–10 minutes.
Slice each steak thickly and serve with the Asian pickles
on the side.
Any leftover pickles can be kept in an airtight container
in the fridge for a
couple of weeks.
Makes 8 per tub
of ice cream
read these Tips first.
ice cream in a square or rectangular tub. You can use any flavour, but bear in
mind that the type that have sauce running through them don’t harden as well.
Go for a harder, denser ice cream rather than a fluffy, overly aerated one.
the ice cream in the freezer for at least 4 hours before using. The harder the
ice cream the easier it is to manage.
the ice cream has frozen really hard, peel away the outer layer of packaging
or, if it’s in a plastic tub, prise it out neatly.
the thicker paddle variety of icy pole sticks as they’re more stable. You can
find them at craft shops, if not elsewhere.
are two ways to melt the chocolate and coconut oil to create the sauce for
coating. You can heat them together in a microwave oven in 30-second bursts,
stir to combine, then set aside to cool to room temperature. Alternatively, you
can melt them together in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water.
the chocolate sauce to cool before using it.
chocolate sauce can be kept for weeks. If it solidifies, re-melt it in the
microwave or in a heatproof bowl set over simmering water.
all the toppings ready to go before you start making your magnums because the
chocolate will harden pretty much as soon as it hits the ice cream.
the ice cream into rectangles and insert a paddle in each. If the ice cream is
not quite hard enough, cut it into magnum-shaped portions and lay them on a
baking tray lined with baking paper or plastic wrap. Insert the paddle then
place in the freezer for a few hours to harden before you coat them with the
sauce. You can smooth the edges off with a warm knife if you like them all neat
and evenly shaped.
chocolate with coconut and freeze-dried raspberries
330 g white
180 g coconut
1 x 2 litre
tub vanilla ice cream
through all the TIPS first, and with all your ingredients ready to go, melt the
chocolate and coconut oil. Pour the white chocolate sauce into a wide, shallow
bowl and put the freeze-dried raspberries into another. Working one at a time,
hold the ice cream by the paddle and dip all sides into the sauce to coat it
all over. Use a spoon to help with any tricky bits and allow any excess to run
back into the bowl. Working quickly, sprinkle on the delicate raspberries
before the chocolate dries. (They do have a lovely tang to them, so don’t over
do it.) The sauce will harden before your eyes, so they are good to eat within minutes.
Or you can pop them back in the freezer on a lined tray until you’re ready to
Dark choc and slivered almonds with vanilla ice cream
330 g dark chocolate, chopped
180 g coconut oil
1 x 2 litre tub vanilla ice cream
125 g (1 cup) almond slivers
Having read through all the TIPS first, and with all your ingredients ready to go, melt the chocolate and coconut oil. Combine the almonds with the chocolate sauce and pour into a wide, shallow bowl. Working one at a time, hold the ice cream by the paddle and use a large spoon to spoon on the sauce, turning as you go to coat them evenly. The sauce will harden very quickly so they are good to eat within minutes. Or you can pop them back in the freezer on a lined tray until you’re ready to eat.
Milk chocolate with caramel ice cream and peanuts
330 g milk chocolate
180 g coconut oil
1 x 2 litre tub caramel or toffee ice cream
150 g (1 cup) salted peanuts, fairly finely and evenly chopped
Having read through all the TIPS first, and with all your ingredients ready to go, melt the chocolate and coconut oil. Pour the chocolate sauce into a wide, shallow bowl and put the chopped nuts into another. Working one at a time, hold the ice cream by the paddle and dip all sides into the sauce to coat it all over. Use a spoon to help with any tricky bits and allow any excess to run back into the bowl. Now, immediately press the coated ice cream gently into the nuts or, if it’s easier, sprinkle them on with a spoon or your fingers. You need to work quickly or the chocolate will harden before the nuts adhere. Put it back in the freezer on a lined tray while you make more, or pass it onto the lucky person who scores first go.
MELON, PROSCIUTTO, BASIL & BLUE CHEESE SALAD
Thinking about it, I’d suggest that my somewhat OTT approach to fashion is perhaps also something of an explanation of this dish, and why I think it works. The big question to ask yourself is this: How can too much of a good thing be ‘too much of a good thing’? Isn’t it really just more of what you love?
100 g (1 cup) pecans
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
55 g (1/4 cup) brown sugar
freshly ground black pepper
1 ripe cantaloupe, seeded, peeled and cut into small
50 g basil leaves, 10 leaves torn apart
12 wafer-thin slices prosciutto
150 g mild blue cheese (such as Blue Castello)
a splash of hot water
zest and juice of 1 lemon
Grease a baking tray or pull out a silicon mat.
Toast the pecans over medium to high heat in a dry pan
for 5 minutes. Don’t let them catch – they will burn quickly. Remove the nuts.
Now mix the balsamic, 1 tablespoon of the olive oil,
brown sugar and pepper in the pan over the heat. This mix will start to bubble
and when it does, throw in your toasted pecans and stir occasionally.
Watching all the time, cook the pecans in this dark,
tar-pit hell for 6 minutes, until they are candied.
Take the pecans out of the syrup and spread them on the
greased baking tray or mat to cool.
Spread the melon pieces on a platter, grind over some
black pepper and then toss on the 10 torn basil leaves. Curl the prosciutto
between the melon and the basil. Crumble over the blue cheese in little nuggets.
Throw on about a third of the candied pecans. Reserve the rest for ‘Ron . . .
Using a stick blender blitz the remaining basil, adding 2
tablespoons of olive oil bit by bit. Continue to blitz and add a little hot
water. This will make the basil dressing nicely creamy. Season.
Dress the plate with dollops of this basil ooze. Grate
over some lemon zest. Squeeze over a little lemon juice. Serve.
Simply scatter rocket leaves over the melon if you don’t want
to make the creamy basil purée.
LIME SPLICE CHEESECAKE (From 100 Best Recipes)
150 g sweet biscuits.
4 tablespoons melted unsalted butter.
500 g cream cheese, at room temperature.
110 g (1/2 cup) caster sugar.
2 teaspoons vanilla extract.
3 teaspoons powdered gelatin.
60 ml (1/4 cup) boiling water.
315 g (1 cup) condensed milk.
1 packet (80 g) lime jelly crystals.
Lime Wizz Fizz
1 packet lime jelly crystals.
30 g (1/4 cup) icing sugar.
7 teaspoons citric acid zest of 2 limes and thin slices of lime, to garnish.
Line the base and side of a 20 cm springform tin with baking paper.
To make the crust, finely grind the biscuits in a food processor, add the butter and blend to form moist sandy crumbs.
Press the crumb mixture evenly over the bottom of the prepared tin.
To make the filling, beat the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla in an electric mixer until smooth and creamy.
Dissolve the gelatin in the hot water and set aside to cool.
Fold the gelatin through the cream cheese mixture.
Add the condensed milk and continue beating until smooth.
Pour the filling into the cooled crust and place in fridge to set for 3–4 hours.
Make the lime jelly according to the packet directions, using half the amount of water required, so that your jelly is double strength and extra springy.
Set in a shallow tray in about a 1 cm layer.
When set, cut into small cubes and use to decorate all over the top of the cake.
Make the lime wizz fizz by combining all the ingredients.
Sprinkle over the top of the jelly.
Arrange 3 slices of fresh twisted lime on top, cut the cake into slices and serve.
PEA, SPAGHETTI ALLA PUTTANESCA (From 100 Best Recipes)
Olive oil, for frying.
1 large brown onion, diced.
25 g anchovy fillets (best and pinkest you can find).
3 garlic cloves, crushed.
125 ml (1/2 cup) red wine.
400 g can tomatoes.
150 g black olives, drained and pitted.
60 g (1/3 cup) capers, washed and drained.
1 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves.
Zest and juice of 1/2 lemon.
2 long red chillies, deseeded and finely chopped.
400 g spaghetti or tagliatelle.
1 tablespoon olive oil vegetable oil, for frying.
Heat the olive oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium-low heat and cook the onion for 6–8 minutes until translucent.
Add the anchovies, pressing down with a fork to lightly mash them, then add the crushed garlic cloves and sauté for 3–4 minutes until cooked through.
Pour in the wine and cook down, scraping any caught bits on the pan back into the sauce.
Add the can of tomatoes, olives and about 35 g (. cup) of capers.
Stir and cook on a low heat for 5 minutes.
Add half the parsley and squeeze in the lemon juice. Adjust the seasoning with salt and a little sugar so it is in balance (but only if needed – those capers and olives will add lots of salt).
Stir in half the chopped chillies.
Cook for 2–3 minutes or until the flavours are combined.
Meanwhile, cook the pasta in well-salted boiling water until al dente – or still a little firm to the bite.
Drain and toss with a little oil. Keep warm.
Dry the remaining capers on a tea towel and then fry in vegetable oil until crispy.
Drain on paper towel. Serve the dish at the table garnished with the crispy capers, the lemon zest, remaining chopped parsley and chilli.
Serve with crusty bread.