Posts Tagged ‘Cooking’

Jon’s Malaysian Tea

Monday, November 16th, 2009

Jon kindly found the time to show us how to make a traditional Malaysian Tea. To see the video click the link below:

Jon’s Malaysian Tea

The Inside Scoop with Jess & Her Mum

Monday, October 19th, 2009

Jess

To say that I was nervous cooking against my Mum is a bit of an understatement.  My mum’s lasagnes are the best lasagnes I’ve ever tasted and for me to make a better one than hers seemed impossible…especially when I had no idea how to make a lasagne!

Studentcooking.tv must have known how difficult this challenge for me was as they organised some much needed lasagne training with me and Leeds uni chef Simon Wood.  I spent a week with Simon in the uni kitchens learning how to make a proper lasagne from scratch-and learned everything from making a roux to getting the tomato sauce just right.

The actual fight…I mean cook off…was great!  By the end of the week I was dead confident to cook against my Mum, and after a little slip up in getting the lasagne into the dish, it all went really well.

I’d like to tell you who won during the day, but I guess you’ll just have to watch Mothercooker pt 2 video to find out!

Jess’ Mum

When Jess phoned me and said that she wanted to make a better lasagne than me, I didn’t know what to say.  Jess has never been into cooking much and I don’t think she even knows how to make a lasagne.

I wasn’t really worried even though Jess said that she’d been having training from Simon Wood.  I’ve been making lasagnes for years and having a big family to feed, am comfortable making them at short notice.  As for the final result, well you’ll just have to see who wins!

Lasagne Making Tips

Monday, October 19th, 2009

Trying to find the secrets so making the best lasagne? Here are a few from a professional chef.

1. Were possible always use fresh lasagne sheets, available now in most supermarkets.

2. Always buy the leanest, best quality minced beef you can afford

3. Dont forget to season properly and check throughout the cooking process ,this is always the most forgotten thing.

4. Keep the mixture nice and moist at all times as the pasta will soak up lots of moisture.

5. Take time to layer up the meat sauce, pasta etc, you will get a much better result.

6. A few fresh oregano leaves in your meat sauce just helps to raise the dish a notch or two.

7. After removing from the oven allow the mixture to stand for 5 to 10 minutes just to settle , this will help when serving.

What Did Rachel Really Think?

Monday, October 12th, 2009

I really enjoyed taking part in the film – it was very random but good fun. I liked the fact we didn’t know what we’d have to cook with as quite often that’s the case. Often when it’s coming to the end of term you find that you have to just eat what’s in your cupboard, which doesn’t have to mean rubbish meals.

Like we did in the film you just have to be more inventive with your ingredients, such as using mushy peas to make fried rice! Something I’ve found was a great left over meal is during BBQ season. Any left over meat i.e. sausages etc chop them all up and stir-fry them with some green beans, baby sweet corn and carrot (or whatever really!). Then add some sweet chilli or soy sauce and eat it. It’s really nice but you do have to make sure you re-cook the meat properly otherwise I think you could die or something.

Billy the Chef’s Top 3 Stir Fry tips

Thursday, September 24th, 2009

1.  Don’t overload the pan with ingredients.  You’ll need space in the pan to toss everything and let it cook.  Also, lots of small groups of ingredients means more variation and more flavour in your meal.

2.  Slice your meat and vegetables finely so they cook quicker.  The idea of a stir fry is to flash fry the ingredients.  If they take too long to cook, they’ll stew.

3.  Use a flavoured oil if you can, as the flavour will transfer to the ingredients.

All Hail The King!..The Kitchen King!

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

Harry: I’m actually still not sure how or why me and Brad won that. I did taste the other guys’ food, which was incredibly gingery so maybe that’s what worked against them?

Brad: I think it was that and the fact that we were just better. Look at the presentation on our plate, it’s unBOWLieveable! There is an argument to say we should maybe being disqualified for dangerous cooking….?

Harry: The microwave. That was a big ooopps but it doesn’t matter no harm done.

Brad: The whole thing was a great laugh overall. Think it goes to show like cooking doesn’t need to be a chore  – you can have fun with your mates while you’re cooking. Fair enough we’re not going to get a film crew and a crowd every time but still.

Harry: yeah you’re right. It did bring a lot of us together and that’s something that’s carried on since. Not a competitive edge to it, more just communal cooking really. Keeping each other company and share food and ideas and stuff. It’s good!

International Cook-Off. The Judges View…

Thursday, May 7th, 2009

We first started planning International Cooking Competition as we thought it would be very facinating to find out how people in other countries cook and present their dishes. I told myself “It would definitely be very exciting and taste-rewarding”. And indeed, we had a very positive response from Loughborough’s International Students with lots of them eager to show off the best cuisine their country has to offer. We quickly got the teams signed up and the day of the competition was soon upon us!

On the day, the atmosphere in the kitchen was nervous, hyperactive and friendly. Contestants had to multitask, watching over their pans and pots as well as peeking what other countries were doing. Of course the best and at the same time the hardest part of the competition was the tasting and judging. It was evident that everyone and poured their patriotism into their work and done their best countires culinary pride, and every single meal was in its own way delightful and exotic. The true International Spirit or you may say flavour, could be felt in every meal and each one presented us we a new flavour we’d never tasted before.. Even though it was hard, we picked a winner and thankfully none of the contestants felt bad or upset!

Overall I think that during these two hectic hours, whilst running around the kitchen and asking fellow contestants for a spare egg or some cooking oil, people became good friends. The event was a great success and opened up a lot of peoples eyes to the huge exotic and exciting variety of food they’re able to cook.

How to NOT get booed.

Sunday, March 8th, 2009

Doing a bit of busking (or ‘street art’ if you’re feeling pretentious) can be a good way of earning a few pennies while at uni. If you’re looking to get some extra spends for more luxury food and are considering busking here are a few tips:

  1. Have a talent: everyone hates a rubbish street performer. Before you go out decide what your act is and practise it. If you’re going to play guitar and sing make sure you learn a few songs so you don’t have to keep repeating the same one!
  2. Research the area: you really need to know a thing or two about the area you intend to occupy with your busking. For one thing you want to make sure it’s safe as I’m sure you don’t want to be attacked or have your earnings nicked! Something else you need to consider is that a lot of councils require you to have a busking license that you have to apply for. No license no busking!
  3. Don’t beg: believe it or not there are some rules to busking, which exist to separate it from begging. Namely you’re not permitted to ASK for money as this is soliciting for cash/begging. As a busker you simply have to rely on your raw talent and peoples good will.
  4. Pick your time: rainy or cold winter days do not do much for the public’s mood or generosity. There are generally less people about and you will probably find you earn less in these situations. The exception to this being the Christmas period when you can cash in on the busy shopping streets!
  5. Mix it up: People will only throw you cash every once in a while and if they gave you some last week, you may not get any this week. As people are creatures of habit, you will often see the same locals in town each time you busk, which can be beneficial as they get to know you, but you may find that after a while your earnings dwindle in one place and you’ll need to go somewhere else to get a fresh audience. When thinking of where to go remember: Tourism is a buskers best friend!

A Recipe What Has Booze In It

Thursday, January 15th, 2009

A Boozy Recipe

Pork Chops with Cider and Apple

Serves: 2

Ingredients:

Olive oil

2 pork chops

1 red onion, peeled and chopped

100ml double cream

200ml of cider

1 red apple, sliced into wedges

salt and pepper

Steps:

1.  Grab a frying pan and heat a drop of the olive oil over a high heat.

2.  Once the oil is hot, place the pork chop in the pan and cook for around 5 minutes or until the side has turned brown.

3.  Flip the pork chop over and cook on the other side.

4.  When both sides have turned brown, remove from the pan and turn the heat down to about halfway.  Add the chopped onion (and a little more oil if the pan is too dry) and fry until the onion starts to soften-about 2 minutes.

5.  Now add the apples, pour in the cider and stir with the onions.  Leave this to bubble gently until about half of it evaporates.

6.  Now pour in the cream and stir it all together.

7.  Add the pork chops back in, then add some salt and pepper and continue cooking for about 10 minutes (you may need to flip the pork chops over again halfway through this last cooking time.)  Serve by putting the pork chop on a plate, then pouring over the apple, onion and cider sauce.  Serve with some mash potatoes or vegetables.

Guide To Booze

Thursday, January 15th, 2009

Picture the scene…’It’s a Tuesday and you’ve finally landed a date with the girl of your dreams and you’re taking her out to a fancy restaurant. It comes to ordering the wine and due to your ignorance you simply ask for the cheapest wine on the menu. In a fit of pompous anger she spits in you face, pushes over the table and leave!

To help avoid this here is a guide to wine.

Choosing The Right Wine

Wine isn’t just a cheap way to get drunk quickly-whenever your mates are round or if you’re eating out, choosing the right wine is an easy way to make a meal even better.

As a rule of thumb, white wine goes best with fish and white meat (chicken, turkey etc.) and red wine with meat dishes-steaks, burgers or even pasta that has meat such as spaghetti bolognaise.

Here’s a brief guide to the different kinds of red and white wine:

Varieties of Red Wine

Merlot

Not as strong as other red wines, it has quite a soft, mellow taste to it.  It is a great match for pasta dishes, like spag bol.

Rioja

(Pronounced ree-oka) Quite a strong taste, rioja is a Spanish wine and goes well with steak and other dishes that are full of flavour.

Cabernet Sauvignon

(Pronounced cabernay so-vinyon) Cabernets have a rich blackcurrant taste.  They are traditionally aged in oak, so can take on an aromatic woody flavour.  Cabernet goes well with beef, or lamb.

Varieties of White Wine

After something a little more refreshing?  Then white wine it is…

Pinot Grigio

(Pronounced peen-oh grijee-oh)  A very light and refreshing wine.  Usually a house wine in restaurants, goes very nicely with fish or chicken dishes, or cool salads in the summer.

Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon Blanc are typically very light wines, and tend to be crisp and acidic, making it ideal for more heavier foods such as risottos.

Chardonnay

Chardonnay can be one of the cheapest wines to buy, but still tastes great.  The taste varies depending on where the grapes have grown.  It goes best with poultry or seafood, like lobster or scallops.