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budget

Wok on Inn, The Rocks

Reviews January 6, 2014

I was recently invited along to Wok On Inn at the Rocks to sample some of their dishes.

Funnily enough I actually spent several months working at a friend’s company a few minutes’ walk away, so it was a good opportunity to visit one of my old haunts.

Please note that I was served ‘half size’ dishes, so expect a larger size for yourself when you visit. Given this in mind I would expect that double sizes of the dishes I sampled would be quite massive and filling!

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Honey garlic glazed sausages

Honey Garlic Glazed Sausages

Recipes March 8, 2012

Hello!

Its been awhile admittedly between posts. I’ve been so busy lately and things have been very up and down in my life at the moment but I plan on bringing more posts to cookingcrusade.com soon.. And I have a big backlog of delicious things to write about 🙂 Thanks for sticking around!

What better reason is there to start writing again than these delicious honey garlic glazed sausages? They are incredibly easy and delicious to put together in a few moments as well as are a good budget side dish to add to breakfast or dinner.

So let’s get started!

Throw sliced onions and mushrooms into a roasting dish.

Add some sausages and drizzle with honey, olive oil and crushed/chopped garlic

Roast in a hot oven until deliciously caramelised and crispy.

ingredients (to serve 4)
8 beef sausages (we used herb garlic ones from Coles)
1 medium onion, chopped into rings
handful of mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves of garlic, crushed and chopped
about 4 tablespoons of honey
2 tablespoons of olive oil
Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Place sliced mushrooms and onions in roasting dish. Snip sausage links using kitchen scissors and lay on top of onions/mushrooms in the roasting dish. Drizzle with honey, olive oil and sprinkle over crushed garlic. Toss sausages, mushroom and onion in the honey, oil and garlic until everything is evenly coated. Place roasting tray in oven and bake sausages for about 30 minutes, occasionally tossing sausages in honey glaze. Serve when they get deliciously crispy.

Goes great with French toast, blueberries and maple syrup.


Hope you are having a fabulous week 🙂 It’s nearly the weekend! Woohoo!

xoxo

C

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front-image

Brownie cupcakes with Peppermint Frosting

Uncategorized January 31, 2011

It’s no secret that I love anything choc-peppermint. I’m a huge fan of mint slices and choc-mint ice-cream. These flavours are also very popular with my friends and my boyfriend, so I don’t need an excuse to whip up anything choc-minty 🙂 In the past I’ve made choc-mint hot chocolate (sooo divine!); a rich chocolate ganache ice-cream with peppermint and let’s not forget, the choc-mint cake.

I hate showing up to any social-type gathering’s at someone’s house empty-handed and it’s always an excuse to bake (I shouldn’t say this because now whenever I visit people’s houses, they will demand cookies. Haha.). However I’m often very sleepy/lazy to want to whip up something crazy complex and complicated.. Easy is the best way to go most of the time 🙂 I pondered over the right type of baked good to bring to a housewarming for a friend, but I was running low on butter and eggs. Fortunately I had a box mix of brownies languishing in the cupboard… Box mix to the rescue!

These cupcakes result in a rich, fudgy brownie cupcake and is topped with a swipe of silky peppermint Swiss Meringue Buttercream (SMBC) and topped with some sprinkles to add colour. No fancy piping, decorations, special tools or skills needed! Fortunately for me I had an extra cup of the SMBC frosting from another cake sitting in the fridge just waiting to be used, but you could just as easily substitute it with a simple American buttercream (creamed butter, powdered sugar + a little milk.)

Ok, so let’s get this party started.

Start out with your favourite brownie box mix. My fave is White Wings (I swear by them! They make the best brownie box mix and believe me when I say that I’ve tried sooo many of them. This isn’t like, product placement or anything, but I wouldn’t waste my time with the other brownie mixes. Mostly they don’t bake as nice and moist as the White Wings brand or they taste crumbly/weird/have a strange aftertaste. I always have great results with this brand and it’s only in one bowl and takes a couple of minutes to assemble which is perfect for me.


This cake mix calls for 2T water, 1/4 cup oil and 2 eggs. I used a splash of water, 1/4 cup of melted butter, 1 regular egg and four egg whites (not for any particular reason, but because I had run out of whole eggs and I had used the yolks from those four to make ice-cream a day before. I kinda threw them in there hoping it would work and it turned out fine …But I mean, don’t go out of your way to do the same thing, I’ve used two eggs previously and it makes no real difference – in fact the texture seems slightly more fudgy with two eggs – probably as a result of the extra yolk.)


Melting butter for the cake batter.


Arrange your cupcake papers in the cupcake tin.


Mix cake batter together.


Here’s a tip for you; pour your cake batter into a small jug – this makes it a bit easier and neater to pour the batter into the cupcake papers rather than pouring it all in a big mess straight from the bowl.


Fill cupcake papers with batter.


Bake cupcakes and remove onto tray and cool.


You can pop them in the fridge for about half an hour if you like to help speed the cooling process along. Before frosting, ensure that cakes are entirely cool so they won’t melt the SMBC.


Tint and flavour your Swiss Meringue Buttercream (I used two capfuls of peppermint essence and gradually added Wilton’s green paste colour until I got the colour I wanted).

If you have made yours overnight like mine and kept it in the fridge, it may have gone a bit hard (due to the high fat content). Leave it out at room temperature and beat until it is smooth enough to handle. You may have to add a tiny amount of cream or milk to help make it smooth out a little bit but I found that the addition of the peppermint essence was enough to make it rather smooth again, instead of hard and lumpy. While adding peppermint essence (I added two capfuls to about 3/4 to 1 cup of SMBC icing), taste it and add more/less to adjust the frosting to make sure it is perfect. I like mine to be quite minty, but I could have gone a bit more pepperminty than with 2 capfuls (I ran out of peppermint essence).


Plop about a teaspoon of peppermint frosting onto each cooled brownie cupcake.


Using a flat butterknife, smooth out the frosting.


Sprinkle on some 100s and 1000s.


If you have more frosting or slightly higher domed cupcakes, you can create more of an upwards dome on your cupcake by smoothing the frosting upwards, like this.


nomnomnomnom.



Enjoy these cupcakes!!

Xoxox
Christine

2 Comments
final-seasoning

Creamy Chicken Mushroom Pasta Bake

Recipes April 12, 2010

Mmmm. This pasta bake (I have to say), is amazing. It’s creamy. It’s garlicky. It’s cheesy. It has mushrooms and chicken. Seriously, how could you go wrong? The most awesome thing about this pasta dish is that it’s also incredibly easy. It’s also not an overly expensive dish to make and can feed quite a large group (or give you tasty leftovers for the rest of the week.) It is also versatile. You can toss in a whole bunch of other ingredients to give it that special flavour you want. This pasta dish only has one downfall and that is that it is not exactly low in fat. But hell, once you taste it, you probably won’t care.

Ok, enough self praise! Getting down to business.

This is a large serving. I made it for a dinner party and it can serve about eight to ten people (especially if you have a side dish of salad.)

Ok we’ll start out with the sauce. We’ll be needing two large onions (more if you’re into that sort of thing;), plain flour, cream of mushroom soup, garlic and butter. We’ll also be needing milk, but milk was being unreasonable and refused to be photographed.

Melt about 4 tablespoons of butter in a heavy based pot (you’ll be needing a large one if you don’t halve the recipe!)

While it’s melting, grate about four cloves or garlic (more or less, depending on how garlicky you want it. If you’re me, that’s a lot. lol.)
When butter starts to bubble, throw in garlic and until it becomes fragrant. Add chopped onion and saute.

Add in flour, tablespoon by tablespoon and whisk until it becomes a smooth roux.

Gradually add milk, half cup by half cup, whisking the whole time to ensure smoothness. Add in can of cream of mushroom of soup and stir. Add in 1/2 a cup of shredded grated cheese and stir until fully melted. Adjust thickness of sauce by adding more flour to thicken or more milk to thin to your liking. If you like, you can freeze quantities of this sauce (before adding the chicken) for future use.

Shred BBQ chicken (or do beforehand, as I did).

Add shredded chicken to sauce.

In a separate pot, boil pasta shells in hot salted water with a drizzle of olive oil to prevent the shells from sticking until pasta is al dente. Drain. Add cooked pasta to sauce and mix through.

Season with salt and pepper and taste.

Now if you were serving this as a pasta dish, you could serve it now with a fresh side salad. If you wanted to turn it into a pasta bake, leave pasta dish in the pot (make sure this is an oven safe pot, by the way-) and sprinkle with a mixture of breadcrumbs and extra cheese and place in oven to bake. Serve when cheese is melted and golden.

Enjoy!

Here is a quick list of the ingredients for your convenience.

Ingredients

1 large family sized 750 gram packet of shell pasta, cooked
2 large onions
4 cloves of garlic, grated
4 tablespoons of butter
1 can of cream of mushroom soup (i used Campbells)
1 C grated tasty cheese
4 tablespoons of plain flour
2 cups of milk (more or less. depends on how thick you want your sauce.)
the shredded meat of 1 large BBQ chicken
seasoning

Optional extra ingredients: peas/corn, fresh mushrooms, other vegies you want to toss in (broccoli or cauliflower would go well.) You can also sub chicken for a can of tuna which is equally delicious and oh so slightly healthier.

1. Melt butter in heavy based, oven safe pot.
2. When it begins to bubble, throw in grated garlic and onion and allow it to become fragrant. Stir gently.
3. Add flour, tablespoon at a time, whisking to avoid lumps.
4. Add milk, 1/2 cupful at a time, whisking still, to ensure smoothness.
5. When milk has been fully incorporated, add in 1/2 a cup of cheese and cream of mushroom soup. Taste sauce (it should be quite salty from the mushroom soup). You can also adjust thickness with extra milk or flour. If freezing portions of your sauce, do so here.
6. Add in shredded chicken and cooked pasta and mix well.

Optional. For a pasta bake, add extra cheese and half a cup of breadcrumbs (for crispness) to the top of the pasta bake and then bake until cheese is melted and golden.

Make this one today! It is superrr delicious. 🙂

Love ;

Christine

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cooked onion and shallot omelette

Onion & Shallot Omelette

Uncategorized January 27, 2010

This is my absolute faaaaaaaavourite omelette at the moment. It’s so quick and easy and veeery delicious. And it needs so little ingredients, so it’s a great budget recipe as well. I find myself making this one for myself maybe once or twice a day (mainly because the fridge is empty..). But it’s great to make for a quick breakfast. The addition of onion and shallot seems rather insignificant, but it really adds such beautiful flavour. You have to try this one!

Ingredients: Serves 1. Prep time: 5 minutes, Cook time: 5-6 minutes.
2 eggs
2-3 shallots
1 medium (or 1/2 a large) brown onion
1 pinch of salt
1 T of olive oil.

Method:
Heat oil in a skillet on high.
While waiting for it to heat up, dice onion and shallots and gently add to skillet when oil is hot (you can test the heat by adding 1 small piece of onion to the pan, when it sizzles, it is hot enough.)

Fry onion and shallots until onion begins to soften and brown slightly. Cook on high for about five minutes, stirring every minute or so.

While the onion/shallots are cooking, break your eggs into a bowl. Beat with either a fork or a whisk and throw in your pinch of salt.

Pour beaten eggs evenly over shallot/onion mixture in hot skillet. Leave for about 5-10 seconds (allowing eggs to cook and firm up) and then flip with a spatula. If your skillet is hot enough, after flipping, it should only take another 10 or so seconds to completely cook. Don’t leave them on your pan too long otherwise the eggs will overcook and become tough. (Note, when flipping omelette, it is very easy for it to break apart, this isn’t a big deal, it’s just slightly less pretty).

When cooked through, serve on a prettypretty plate (i stole this one from my friend, who got it from T2..), if you like, you can drizzle it with some bbq or tomato sauce.. Some sweet chilli sauce is particularly divine, but it’s perfectly lovely plain. To eat this omelette Fillo style would involve serving this with rice, diced tomatoes and fish sauce and maybe a steamed eggplant, but that’s another story =p

Enjoy!

Love, xox

Christine

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