Pappardelle with Homemade Cheese-stuffed Meatballs

Pappardelle with Homemade Cheese-stuffed Meatballs

Pappardelle with Homemade Cheese-stuffed Meatballs

Hello Everyone! Oh wow – it has definitely been a while since I last updated my blog (well, I don’t think two weeks is “a while” but it definitely is for me)! I feel like I’ve lost touch on how to write since my last post, but I’m guessing that it is just the fatigue speaking here. In a nutshell, I’ve been super busy for the past two months, and it was really difficult for me to just sit down and write with a clear mind. I had been staying in the office until 9/9:30pm every night and have been working on Sunday’s as well since April. I know I shouldn’t be complaining because my other colleagues already do this on a daily basis and stay even later as well – it’s just that I am not used to this way of working.

Anyway! So what have I been up to? I don’t even remember if I have mentioned this in any of my previous blog posts – if I have, the annual Sukan Ria Antara Syarikat Inter-company Sports Fest 2016 finally closed two Sunday’s ago. You would think that that would be such a relief, but nooooooo! Just 3 days later, the opening of the 18th Consumer Fair snuck up on us, and that lasted up until Sunday. Though things have slowed down a bit, I still feel the stress from the past 2 months – and I believe it’s just because I haven’t had a proper rest yet. That’s right, right after the closing of the 18th Consumer Fair, we still had to report to work the next day at 8am *sigh*. Well, I’m just excited and really looking forward to the upcoming long weekend to just sit back, relax, and catch up on some cooking for my blog (doesn’t exactly scream relaxing, but cooking does made me happy).

Homemade Cheese-stuffed Meatballs

For the month of June, I will be sharing some delicious pasta recipes with you. I do believe that I mentioned about sharing some yummy mango recipes with you for this month – but I unfortunately did not have any time at all to make any dishes at all and mangoes are not in season anymore. So here’s a recipe for a classic bolognese sauce with pappardelle and homemade meatballs:

Pappardelle with Homemade Cheese-stuffed Meatballs Ingredients

PREP TIME 20 MINS | COOKING TIME 30 MINS | SERVES 4

INGREDIENTS

For the sauce

  • 250g pappardelle (or any other pasta)
  • 125g baby brown mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 can (400g) chopped tomatoes
  • 1 cup of chicken or beef stock
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2-3 dried bay leaves
  • 1 celery stick, sliced
  • 1 medium-sized carrot, cut into small chunks
  • 1 red birds-eye chilli, sliced (optional for that added kick of spice)
  • 1/2 green capsicum, diced
  • 1/2 medium-sized red onion, diced
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • Ground sea salt and black pepper to taste
  • Knob of unsalted butter
  • Mozzarella cheese, grated

For the meatballs

  • 250g minced beef
  • 1 large free range egg
  • 1/2 medium-sized red onion, minced
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs*
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • Bocconcini balls
  • Ground sea salt and black pepper to taste

*You can buy readily made bread crumbs from the shelves or you can make your own by lightly toasting some stale bread (if you have some in handy) and then blitz it in the food processor.

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 190C (375F or gas mark 5). Line a baking tray with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. For the meatballs: Add all the ingredients, except for the bocconcini balls, to a large bowl and mix until well combined. Shape the mixture into small to medium-sized balls and press a bocconcini ball (cut into smaller pieces if it is too big) into the meatball. Gently place onto the prepared baking tray and repeat with the remaining meat, about a dozen to fifteen balls altogether depending on the size. Place in the oven and bake until browned, about 10 minutes. Once done, remove from the oven and set aside.
  3. For the sauce: Heat about a tablespoon of oil together with a knob of unsalted butter in a large frying pan over medium-high. Sauté the garlic until golden and fragrant, then add the chillies and onions. Sauté until the onions are soft and then add in carrots, followed by the celery, and then the mushrooms. Cook for about 3-4 minutes. Season with salt, pepper, and oregano. Cook, stirring, until the vegetables are soft.
  4. Add the dried bay leaves, chopped tomatoes, tomato paste, and stock. Give it a good mix and then turn the heat down to low, cover and let it simmer for about 15 minutes to allow the flavours to blend. Finally, add in the capsicum and meatballs, cooking for a further 5-8 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, cook the pappardelle according to packet instructions.
  6. Remove the sauce from the heat and serve over the hot pasta. Top with the meatballs and a handful of grated mozzarella cheese. Enjoy!

Pappardelle with Homemade Cheese-stuffed Meatballs

BON APPÉTIT

– Ally xx

myTaste.com

Classic Cream of Mushroom Soup

Classic Cream of Mushroom Soup

Hello Everyone! I know, this recipe may not be as exciting as the three Winter Warmer soup recipes that have gone up on the blog for this month, but everybody loves an easy creamy mushroom soup. Well, at least I know without a doubt that I love me a nice bowl of mushroom soup. Even at buffets that I have been to, I always dive into a nice bowl of mushroom soup over whatever was the other choice of soup.

Classic Cream of Mushroom Soup

Anyway, I’ve made this recipe a couple of times before and I remember the last time I made this soup was last year during my meat free week which was the week before Easter Sunday. That whole week was difficult indeed because I would always be so hungry after 2 hours of having my meal which then made me sad and upset. What did I learn from this experience? I can’t live without meat in my diet, and therefore I will never be able to convert to a vegetarian. I can have a no meat day, but a week let alone forever? Nope!

You may notice that there are some ingredients missing in the picture from the list, and that’s only because I remembered when everything was chopped up already that I was missing the butter and flour. The dash of worcestershire sauce was actually unplanned, I just came across the sauce in the pantry as I was searching for the pepper mill.

Classic Cream of Mushroom Soup Ingredients

PREP TIME 10 MINS | COOKING TIME 25 MINS | SERVES 2-3

INGREDIENTS

  • 300g cup mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 pcs portobello mushrooms, cut into small chunks
  • 2 cups pork stock*, or vegetable stock
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 brown onion, sliced
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • Dash of worcestershire sauce
  • Ground salt and black pepper to taste
  • Pinch of dried thyme
  • Thickened cream

*I had about 2 cups of rich pork broth that I didn’t want to throw away from tenderising a piece of pork shoulder to teach my friend how to make roast pork cracking, so I reserved it and decided to use it for this recipe. Otherwise, plain vegetable stock is fine for a vegetarian option.

METHOD

  1. Melt the butter in a large pot over medium-high heat, be careful as to not brown/burn the butter. Add the garlic and sauté for about a minute or two before adding the the onions and cooking them until soft. Then add in the mushrooms, seasoning with a bit of black pepper, salt, and thyme. Cook until the mushrooms are tender.
  2. Add the pork stock in and a dash of worcestershire sauce. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, let it cook for a further 10 minutes. Scoop out about a tablespoon of the stock and place into a small bowl together with the flour. Mix until there are no more lumps and the mixture becomes a thick paste. Return to the pot and incorporate well into the soup. Continue cooking the soup until it starts to thicken, about a further 5 minutes.
  3. Turn the heat off, and scoop out about a heaped ladle of the soup and mushrooms. Set aside.
  4. Then, using a stick blender, blend the mushrooms together with the liquid in the cooking pot until smooth. Return the unblended soup to he cooking pot and mix well.
  5. Divide the soup equally into serving bowls (2 large bowls, or 3 small bowls) and top with a dollop of thickened cream and fresh afro parsley. Serve immediately with some toasted bread.

Classic Cream of Mushroom Soup

BON APPÉTIT

– Ally xx

myTaste.com

Mushroom and Avocado Toastie

Mushroom and Avocado Toastie

I remember when I was living in the suburbs of Cammeray in the Lower North Shore, my previous flatmate and myself would every month visit the farmers market and get our fresh produce from there. We got what we wanted from the same stalls each month and eventually made friends with the many farmers, one of which was Margin Mushrooms. They are very friendly and would always throw in an extra mushroom or two. I even got fresh curry leaves from them one time when I was in search for some that week – not to mention for free! Their mushrooms are the best indeed! I don’t live in the Lower North Shore anymore and the closet market that they participate in that’s relatively close to me is Bondi, but have have not been since!

I also remember that they gave out mini books by Power of Mushrooms, and I came across today’s featured recipe for this blog: Mushroom and Avocado Toastie. I whipped this up for breakfast one morning and it made me such a happy person! It’s an easy and quick fix to start your day off with a bang! I didn’t change anything from the recipe in particular as it was good as it was, the only thing I probably changed was the bread that I used and portion sizes. So please do check out the original recipe on their website.

PREP TIME 5 MINS | COOKING TIME 10-18 MINS SERVES 3-4

INGREDIENTS

  • 3-4 slices of Pane di Casa from Bakers Delight
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, and extra for drizzling
  • 1 tbsp freshly grated ginger
  • 250g swiss brown mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 lime, halved
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • 1 large ripe avocado, roughly mashed
  • Ground salt and pepper to taste

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 180C. Drizzle both sides of the bread slices with oil and place on a large baking tray lined with baking paper. Bake for about 5-8 minutes or until lightly toasted and golden. Set aside to cool.
  2. Heat a large frying over high heat. Add the oil, ginger and mushrooms and cook, tossing often, for 5 minutes until mushrooms are light golden and tender. Remove from the heat and squeeze over the lime juice, and season with salt and freshly ground pepper.
  3. Spoon and spread the mashed avocado onto the toasted pane di casa bread slices and top with a spoonful of mushrooms. Garnish with thyme leaves.

Mushroom and Avocado Toastie

BON APPÉTIT!

– Ally xx

myTaste.com

Cheesy Mushroom Omelette with Avocado Mint Greek Yoghurt & Wilted Spinach

Cheesy Mushroom Omelette with Avocado Mint Greek Yoghurt & Wilted Spinach

First off let me be the last to wish everyone a glorious Good Friday! Welcome everyone, to my very first blog post ever! I have been meaning to start up a food blog of all my kitchen adventures, well more like I have had other blogs before but I never kept up with it. So I decided to start fresh!

I just went through a hard week of procrastination and a 2500-word essay that was due yesterday and I’m so glad that it’s the Easter weekend and mid-semester break! So to celebrate the end of the first half of the semester, and of course Good Friday, I wanted to whip up a special BIG brunch for myself – though I think my eyes were way much bigger than my tummy, I only ate half of it and kept the rest.

Today’s recipe as the blog title says is: Cheesy Mushroom Omelette with Avocado Mint Greek Yoghurt & Wilted Spinach:

Cheesy Mushroom Omelette with Avocado Mint Greek Yoghurt & Wilted Spinach

PREP TIME 10 MINS | COOKING TIME 15 MINS | SERVES 1

INGREDIENTS

For the Omelette:

  • 4 regular-sized Swiss Brown Mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 large free range eggs
  • 2 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1/2 gourmet tomato, diced
  • 1/2 green capsicum, diced
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • Ground salt and black pepper to taste
  • Handful of shredded parmesan cheese
  • Knob of butter

For the Avocado Yoghurt:

  • 1 small-sized avocado, roughly mashed
  • 1 cup regular greek yoghurt
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup of fresh mint leaves, roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Ground salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 cup of loose-leaf baby spinach

Just note that I sometimes work without measurements in the kitchen, so some of the measurements in the ingredient list may not be very accurate. I’ve tried to remember roughly how much of each ingredient I’ve added in, but please feel free to adjust to your liking! Also, I don’t work with timers very often (unless it’s for baking or cooking with seafood and other meats). For this recipe I used my eyes to tell when something is cooked – probably not to perfection like Masterchef and all, but definitely cooked.

METHOD

  1. Combine all the avocado yoghurt ingredients in a small bowl. Refrigerate until needed.
  2. In a large fry pan on high heat, melt the butter. Then add in the onions and stir until soft. Add in the mushrooms and stir until colour changes. Add in the capsicum, tomatoes and 1 sprig of the thyme leaves, stir for about a minute and transfer to a dish. We don’t want to over cook the capsicum and tomatoes, so that they still retain a slight crunch.
  3. Turn the heat down to medium-low and add oil to the same frying pan. While waiting for it to heat up, beat the eggs in a bowl with the milk and season with salt and pepper. Pour the egg mixture into the frying pan.
  4. Sprinkle the parmesan cheese over the top and let the egg cook until the egg starts to set. Top half of the egg with the mushroom filling. Fold omelette in half, and cook for a further minute or so. Transfer to a plate.
  5. Add the spinach to the same frying pan and stir until wilted. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to the plate.
  6. Garnish by sprinkling fresh thyme leaves over the omelette, avocado yoghurt and wilted spinach.

Cheesy Mushroom Omelette with Avocado Mint Greek Yoghurt & Wilted Spinach

I remember when I was chopping up all the ingredients, my housemate came into the kitchen and she said, “Wow it smells so fresh in here!” And again we met again when the meal was cooked and ready to be devoured by me, she said “THAT LOOKS AMAZING!” She’s so adorable 🙂

BON APPÉTIT!

– Ally xx

myTaste.com