Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Transmission resumes shortly

Hi All,
I know that I have been off air for a while now but rest assured I will be back at it soon.


Friday, May 6, 2011

Roast Pork - Hawaiian style

This weekend I decided to actually cook something from scratch.

Since returning from our honeymoon in Hawaii, Miss Piggy and I have often discussed attempting a recreation of the traditional Hawaiian Kalua Pork. I had done some research on the inter-web about recipes but having a team mate at work with Hawaiian family, I opted to follow her advice (and her Mum's recipe) so a big thanks to "The Peanut Gallery".

Now since I know that the President of the body corporate of our unit block would not allow me to dig a pit in the back yard I was glad that the recipe I was given was for the oven, but I was also given some options to use a slow cooker. Since we had just bought a slow cooker it was decided that we should give it a whirl at something other than soup....

Now the cooking instruction is fairly simple:
1) marinate pork for as long as possible - preferably overnight.
2) wrap meat in banana leaves - aluminium foil works just as well.
3) cook for 6 - 7 hours
4) shred meat
5) serve

See, simple.

Step 1, the marinade:  Now the traditional Kalua Pork has a lovely smoky flavour that comes from the wood fire that it is cooked in. In the non traditional method the smokiness comes from the addition of "Liquid Smoke" to the marinade. This is mixed with rock salt, soy sauce and minced garlic and rubbed into the roast.
I opted for a shoulder roast from Coles - again thanks to the Peanut Gallery for her recommendations on the cut to use. I added a few cuts to the meat to help the flavour work its way in. In to the fridge it goes overnight.

Step 2, nice and easy: Place the roast on aluminium foil, pour the excess marinade over the roast and seal it up in the foil. It helps if you start to wrap before you pour otherwise it gets messy.

Step 3, Shred: I had absolutely no idea what I was doing here. I quickly figured out that you can use a pair of tongs and a fork to quite efficiently pull apart the meat and turn it into stringy bits of yummyness. sampling at this point is encouraged. 

Step 4, Eat: Pretty self explanatory this step. If you do need some assistance we opted for steamed cabbage and rice, very Hawaiian.

BTW: I got a big thumbs up from "The Peanut Gallery" at work, I think a comment like "That's beter than my Mum's" is pretty good.....

For the record the recipe is as follows:
1 x 1/2 Tblspn rock salt
3 x Tblspn soy sauce
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
1 x Tblspn liquid smoke
1 Pork shoulder roast

  • mix all ingredients in a small bowl
  • rub pork with the mixture and leave for as long as possible (I left mine overnight)
  • leave any fat on durring the cooking process as this will add to the flavour
  • wrap pork in foil (you can use banana leaves for this if you have them lying around) ensuring that it is completely sealed up to allow the pork to steam in its own juices.
  • place in the slow cooker and cook on low for 6-7 hours (check it after about 6
You can freeze any left overs for later use.


Thursday, April 21, 2011

The weekend of almosts and nearlys......

A little while back both Mel an I took a day off on Friday to head out to the country for a looong weekend (yes I am getting slack in posting).

We have a friend, "The Cattle Baroness", who owns a property just outside of Gulgong and is more than happy to accommodate us in return for some help around the farm.

This was also a special weekend as my lovely bride was turning thirty something on the Saturday and a lavish feast had been planned - Country Fare, and lots of it.

We left home at about 9:30 and at this point we hit the first "almost" scenaio of the trip.

I had decided to use my GPS and see which way it took us. This would have been fine except that it decided that The Bells Line of Road was faster than the M4 and thus meant that morning tea in Leura didn't happen (or it "almost" happened). Mel = Not So Happy.

We changed our plans and decided to stop in Gulgong for lunch where we would also pick up yummy BBQ treats - Vegemite and Cheese Sausages!  Yes that's right your read correctly Vegemite and Cheese Sausages.

We have had these yummy treats on previous trips to the farm and were looking forward to again chowing down and were planning on bringing some home. However here we hit another "almost".

As I parked the car Mel headed in to the Gulgong Butcher to place our order. As I stepped out of the car I can hear a strange wailing sound coming from the butcher shop.... As I walk in I find out that the sound was actually Mel. THERE ARE NO VEGEMITE AND CHEESE SAUSAGES!!!! Mel tried the "We drove from Sydney to get them" followed by "Its my birthday. Are you sure you don't have any?" but still no luck.

So now we need to decide what type of sausages to get for the BBQ.  A decision best made over lunch.

A short walk across the street is the appropriately names Butcher Shop Cafe - no relation to the actual butcher shop. It's a lovely little place that we have eaten at before. We take our seats at the big communal table and place our order having chosen from the wall size chalk board.

I opted for the Butcher Burger ($10.00) and a Caramel Milkshake ($3.50). The burger was great, big and tasty with lots of cheese and bacon served between two thick slices to toasted bread.  The milkshake was fantastic. You just can't beat a country milkshake.

Once we had consoled ourselves with such yummy treats we headed back to the butcher shop to pick from the lesser flavours of sausage, Lamb with Garlic and Oregano... Meh!

And so its off to the farm we go.

For the full farm story check out http://theadventuresofmisspiggy.blogspot.com/

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Adventures in Paradise - Breakfasts

So here is my first post from our Hawaii holiday/Honeymoon.  Sorry for the delay but I've hardly had a spare moment between work and water polo recently...

I have decided to talk about the breakfasts. We had the advantage of having a kitchenette in our room which allowed us to do our own thing in the mornings. On our first day in paradise (after the 6 hour power nap) we headed out for supplies.

We headed into the nearest ABC store and picked up the essentials - milk, bread, peanut butter, honey and we also grabbed a tub of Pineapple.

On the way to the checkout I decided to get some breakfast cereal. As I was on holiday I decided to go all out and picked up a Fun Pack of mini cereals.

I do this occasionally at home when I feel the need to have Fruit Loops or Coco Pops (growing up is optional after all). The American packs are slightly larger than those back home proving that everything in the states is bigger. I was most eager to try the two flavours that we don't have at home. Both the Corn Pops and the Apple Jack impressed and were not overly sweet.

This however was never going to be the full extent of "Breakfast in America" (yes I am humming the Supertramp song). I had also planned to visit Denny's and once Mel found out that McDonald's had Biscuits on the menu we also added that to the plan as the first stop.

We had discovered a McDonald's on the corner just across the road from us (don't know how they beat the ABC stores to that one...). It was a little strange as we walked under those golden arches, everything was sort of the same but somehow alien. The menu board looked the same but a lot of the items were unknown. Mel knew exactly what she was after and ordered the McBiscuits with Sausage. It took me a little while longer to come up with a decision and I opted for the "Local Boy Special". When in Rome.... as they say.

Mel's choice proved a little disappointing by failing to live up to the remembrances of here 2006 trip to Las Vegas. My choice on the other hand proved to be surprisingly good. The "Local Boy Special" was Scrambled Eggs with Portuguese Sausage, Spam (is there anything it can't do??) and Rice (yes rice..).  This combination proved to be surprisingly yummy and I even opted to use the soy sauce that came with it in true Island style.

Later on in the week we visited Denny's for our breakfast pilgrimage, we also went for dinner but you'll need to read about that one over at "The Adventures of Miss Piggy".

Mel opted for the Breakfast Burrito for this one which she said was really nice.  It was filled with steak and came with a pile of hash brown on the side, which is just like a potato rosti really.

I renewed my acquaintance with the Lumberjack Slam. You have to love a breakfast that comes with dessert.  Mel was pretty partial to the Biscuit that came with my breakfast, plus the whipped butter that Denny's uses.

Everything you see in the three pictures above is part of my Lumberjack Breakfast!