Archive for the ‘News’ Category
Here is the recipe I talked about with Grubby and Dee Dee today on 3aw’s The Weekend Program.
I brine the eye fillet in my simple beer brine for two to three days before smoking it in my wok on the stove. If you have never used a beer brine before you are in for a real treat and if you have never tea smoked in your wok before, well, what can I say? This may be your first time but it won’t be your last!
My beer of choice for this would be a good Red Ale such as Nail Red Ale, an IPA like Holgate Road Trip or an Amber Ale – my favourite is brewed by me so you will have to find another one. I pick these styles as the malt sweetness will wrap around the salty smokiness of the meat, making it taste even better.
I like to cook this dish at public cooking demos to show people how easy it is to do a little bit of home smoking and how delicious the result is. Of course I have to brine the fillet at home as the meat sits in the brine for several days. I also use this brine for lamb rack which I also smoke and for fish fillets – although for fish you only need to leave them in the brine for a couple of hours. The smoked eye filet goes brilliantly with my lentil salad, you’ve been warned!
Tea-smoked beer-brined eye fillet
1 eye fillet – approx 550 – 600g
200g of brown sugar
20 black pepper corns
3 bay leaves
3 pieces of lemon rind – no pith
1 litres of boiling water
2 litres of water
2 x 330mil bottles of dark ale, porter or stout.
Put the salt, sugar, peppercorns, bay leaves and lemon rind in a large pot and pour over the boiling water. Stir to dissolve the sugar and salt and then add in the cold water and beer and stir again. Put pot in the fridge to bring down the temperature. Once the brine is cool place the eye fillet in – it should be covered by the brine, cover the pot with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for two to three days turning the fillet each day.
Remove the fillet and pat dry with paper towels and place on a cake rack that is sitting on a plate. Put the plate in the fridge uncovered for 1 day so as to dry out the eye fillet – this is very important as the meat forms a pellicle which allows the smoke to stick to the meat.
½ cup of black tea
½ cup of brown sugar
½ cup of raw white rice
Mix all ingredients together well. Line a wok with three layers of Al Foil and pour the smoking mix in to the wok. Turn the heat to high and wait for the mix to begin to smoke, when it does place a wire rack in the wok and then place the eye fillet on to the rack over the smoking mix. Cover tightly and once the smoke is really going turn the heat down a little to a medium high. Smoke the eye filet until it reaches an internal temperature of between 63°c – 67°c. Depending on the thickness of the particular eye fillet you bought this may take anywhere from 25 mins – 40 mins. In fact when you buy your eye fillet try and get one that has uniform thickness from end to end that way when you cook it you won’t end up with a dry over cooked thin end and an under done thick end.
When cooked remove from the wok and allow to rest while you put some lentil salad in the middle of a plate in a kind of long oblong shape. Slice the meat in half centre meter slices and arrange 4 – 5 slices over and along the lentil salad.
Serves 4 – 6
Lentil, Parsley and Tomato Salad
This is one of those salads that I am happy to eat on its own for lunch or to serve up as a perfect accompaniment to whatever else I have cooked be it a steak, barbequed quail or some roast chicken. My favourite thing to serve this with though is my tea smoked eye fillet page xx it is fantastic and a great dinner party dish.
1 ½ cups of brown lentils
1 clove of garlic smashed
2 bay leaves
12 large cherry tomatoes – halved then halves cut into three
½ Spanish red onion – finely sliced
2 Lebanese cucumbers – peeled and cut into large dice
1 tablespoon of small capers
1 bunch of flat leaf parsley
12 caper berries – optional but tasty
5tablespoons of olive oil
4 tablespoons of balsamic
1 tablespoon of lemon juice
1 tablespoon of red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic – crushed
1 teaspoon of seeded mustard
Pinch of Salt
Put lentils, smashed garlic and bay leaves into saucepan with 6 cups of cold water. Place pan on high heat and bring to the boil then turn down and simmer for 15 – 20 mins or until the lentils are al dente. Strain, remove and discard the garlic and bay leaf then allow lentils to cool.
For the dressing put the olive oil, balsamic, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, crushed garlic, mustard, salt and pepper into a jar and shake well to combine – taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.
Combine the rest of the salad ingredients into a salad bowl and add the warm lentils then give it all a mix to combine. Pour over the dressing and mix again to combine well.
350g pitted kalamata olives
3 – 4 anchovies – chopped (start with 3 and add another if you feel it needs it)
3 medium sized cloves of garlic – crushed
2 tablespoons of salted capers – rinsed and dried
1 tablespoon of lemon thyme
2 tablespoons of sherry vinegar
3 tablespoons of olive oil
Put everything into a food processor and blitz until it is a paste.
Makes approx 2 cups
Have on biscuits or toast with a cold ale!
Keep in an air tight jar in the fridge for about 7 or so days.
For the couple I bumped into today buying some South Melbourne dim sims – how good are they!!! – here is the link to my salami 101.
The thread is very long and is full of lots and lots of info on salami making so it is well worth a read. Read the first three or four pages and you will get the low down and basics about making salami at home. The one secret I have learnt after doing this for 10 years is to mix the meat really really really well before stuffing it into casings!
Enjoy. Any questions leave them in comments and I will answer them.
Just wanted to post a Happy New Year to you all post!
Don’t know who will read it as I haven’t actually been on here much of late – of late meaning the last two years!
2014 was an interesting year with many many lessons, challenges and some rewards. I’m not so sure how I feel about it at the moment nor am I too sure on how I feel about 2015 although when I think about it I feel positive about this new year, excited about the new challenges and new discoveries, ready for it – in fact I am going to go get it started!
oh and may you have a happy, prosperous 2015 full of love laughter and light
About 150 children turned out for the Geelong audition of the film, Chickabees.
The film is based on the much-loved Margaret Clark children’s book of the same name.
Clark lives in Geelong.
Mercurio, who is also a judge on Dancing With the Stars, led the children through dance steps.
Mercurio will star in the film as well as choreograph the dancing.
To be filmed in Geelong, Chickabees tells the story of a group of 12-year-old dancers trying to be famous.
Mercurio said Geelong’s best young dancers, singers and actors were asked to learn and perform dance sequences as well as perform a song of their choice.
Chickabees is scheduled for release in Australian cinemas in Easter 2015.
At this time of year I am sure I am not the only person that goes out and buys a whole leg ham on the bone for the Xrissy table – I do a turkey in the weber also but more on that in another thread.
I picked up my ham today from my local butcher whose ham I will buy sliced every now and then and it is pretty good. I normally buy my Xmas ham from a small smoking company which unfortunately sold up around October this year – his hams were awesome!
So I got my ham home and just chanced to look on the label – I am a label reader – and found that my ham was in fact only 78% pork the other 22% was made up of water, salt, nitrites, acid regulator, sugar and other stuff etc etc In my label reading travels regarding ham I have found ham in the supermarket with as much as 95% pork and as low as 55% pork.
Now the thing is I like Kevin’s ham but I am not sure I want to be eating only 78% pork? My expectations on a gourmet ham would be that it be in the 90% pork range. Am I wrong; is the quality of a ham dependant on the amount of pork in the ham? Or is the quality all about the quality of the meat and the quality of the brine and smoking i.e. in the magic of Butchers like Kevin and how they ply their craft?
Obviously a ham with a higher pork content will be a drier ham, a more meatier texture, flavour and mouth feel – something I like in a whole leg ham. A ham with a lower pork content is going to be a little more wet, a softer texture and possibly a little more salty.
Where do you guys and girls sit in regards to your xmas ham? I know there are a couple of butchers lurking here what say you about pork content levels in ham?
Why do people who don’t know you, never had anything to do with you, why do they take the time , why do they make the effort to post aggressive, spiteful, insulting messages to you.
Okay to me.
Thankfully it doesn’t happen often but I am completely perplexed and rather angry that someone I have never met or spoken to has sent me a couple of tweets which have been abusive, insulting and aggressive.
What do they get out of it? Is it a sense of power (hiding behind their handheld media device)
What annoys me is I am angry about it, I feel like it is unfair and I want to fix it. I have done nothing wrong and yet I feel the need to sort it out?
Strange! People are weird!
It is a strange idea that some one that doesn’t know you at all has decided to not like you. I guess that is just as strange as some one who doesn’t know deciding to like you although that scenario feels a lot nicer.
Water off a ducks back – working on that – I wanted to rant and rave get them to see the error of their ways to apologise for being rude and all that….instead I just blocked them, never to be heard of or thought of again!