Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat – A New Cookbook by Samin Nosrat

Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat is a new cookbook by chef, writer and teacher, Samin Nosrat. Designed to be your compass in the kitchen, the cookbook demystifies the four elements of good cooking – salt, which enhances flavour; fat, which delivers flavour and generates texture; acid, which balances flavour; and heat, which ultimately determines the texture of food – and shows that if you can master these, anything you cook will be delicious.

I can cook but I’ve largely been a follow the recipe type person.  I have high hopes that this will be the book that transforms me into one of those people that say: “I’ve only got these three obscure ingredients at hand but I’m going to whip you up something sensational.”

Hungarian Paprika-Spiced Cauliflower Soup Recipe

This flavoursome cauliflower soup recipe is perfect if you’re bunkering down at home for the afternoon as much of the prep can be done ahead of time. I had no idea what nokedli were prior to eating this soup (they are Hungarian mini dumplings that are fried in butter and scattered on top of the soup) but I am delighted they are now in my life.

The following serves 4-6 people, involves around 40 minutes preparation and 80 minutes cooking time.

You will need:

  • 110 gm butter, coarsely chopped
  • 1 kg cauliflower, cut into florets
  • garlic cloves, finely grated
  • 2 tbsp thyme
  • 1 tbsp Hungarian paprika, plus extra, to serve
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • Finely grated rind of 1 lemon
  • onion, finely chopped
  • 1.5 litres (6 cups) chicken stock
  • To serve: sour cream and lemon wedges
  • ¼ cup each (loosely packed) flat-leaf parsley and dill 

Nokedli

  • 150 gm(1 cup) plain flour
  • eggs, lightly beaten
  • For tossing: olive oil

View the full recipe.

Winter Warming Chestnut, Porcini Mushroom & Potato Soup Recipe

This rich and delicious soup recipe from Skye Gyngell is on high rotation in my house during winter. Serve with crusty bread and a glass of wine, preferably by a fire. The following serves 4 and you will need:

  • 60g dried porcini mushrooms
  • 150ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 eschalot, finely chopped
  • 4 rosemary sprigs, leaves picked, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1.5kg small potatoes (such as desiree), quartered, chopped
  • 1.5L (6 cups) chicken or vegetable stock
  • 10 roasted, peeled chestnuts, quartered (see how)
  • 1 1/4 cups (100g) freshly grated parmesan
  • Finely chopped parsley, to garnish

View full recipe.

Lamb and Haloumi Sausage Rolls – A Party Pleasing Recipe

I’ve been asked a couple of times for this party-pleasing recipe so here it is. The lamb and haloumi make a nice departure from traditional sausage rolls and given mint jelly is not something I usually have on hand, I grate some zucchini and/or carrot through instead. They are best served hot from the oven. The following makes 24 and you will need:

  • 500g lamb mince
  • 1 cup (70g) fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup mint jelly
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped mint
  • 200g haloumi, grated
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 sheets frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tbs nigella seeds or black sesame seeds
  • Sliced red onion, mint leaves and tomato to serve (optional)

View the full recipe (recipe from Delicious Love To Cook

 

Spelt Salad with Squash & Fennel Recipe

This grainy and substantial autumn/winter salad recipe with roasted squash and fennel is from The River Cottage Veg Everyday cookbook by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. It is a complete meal in itself but also works well as a side dish. Fennel is high on my list of favourite vegetables so I find it hard to experiment too wildly with this recipe but you could easily use other vegetables based on the season. The recipe serves 4 and you will need:

  • Butternut squash
  • Olive oil
  • Fennel bulbs
  • Garlic
  • Walnuts
  • Pearled spelt (or pearl barley)
  • Lemon juice
  • Parmesan, hard goat’s cheese or other well-flavoured hard cheese
  • Parsley
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

View the full recipe.

Spaghetti with Clams, Saffron & Leek Recipe

Spaghetti alle vongole would be a top contender if I had to choose a last meal. This creamy (but not in an over-the-top way) take on it is one of many great dishes in a Gourmet Traveller Seafood cookbook from 2004. If vongole/clams are not available you could substitute with pippies. The following serves 4:

  • 20g butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large leek, washed well and thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 125ml dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1 cup pouring cream
  • Large pinch of saffron threads, soaked in 1 tablespoon boiling water for 10 minutes
  • 1kg clams (vongole), soaked in cold water
  • 400g spaghetti
  • 2 teaspoons chopped dill
  • 1 tablespoon chopped flat leaf parsley
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

 

View the full recipe.

Queen Chow – Hong Kong Street Food in Enmore, Sydney

Housed in Enmore’s Queens Hotel and inspired by Hong Kong street food, Queen Chow by Merivale delivers Cantonese classics and diverse dim sum. The food was outstanding and service friendly and informative so I will excuse the fact they forgot our duck and that the fortune cookies at the end told extremely lame fortunes (“the only thing better than a cookie is cookies”). We chowed down Queen Chow steamed dim sum platter ($32); Honey glazed pork spareribs ($21)Salt and pepper squid, silken tofu, prawns with chilli bean mayo ($24); Snow pea leaves, ginger, shaoxing ($16); South Australian pippies, black bean, chilli, Young Henrys Natural Lager ($36) – a standout dish; Hokkien noodles, Sichuan pork slices, black fungi, garlic stem ($24); followed by a couple of fruity desserts that were a little underwhelming after all the goodness that preceded them. We completely missed the fact there is a cocktail bar upstairs which would have been a more sensible option than finding an alternate venue for a nightcap and being forced to eat bread due to ridiculous licensing laws. Queen Chow takes online bookings and is at 2/167 Enmore Rd, Enmore, Sydney.

The Best Tuna Meatballs Recipe – Perfect with Pasta

These tuna meatballs made with fresh tuna are from Jamie Oliver’s Jamie’s Italy cookbook and are perfect with pasta. Made with fresh fish (not canned or jarred), herbs and spices, they are just as tasty as the meaty version and make delightful and versatile leftovers hot or cold – eat them on their own or put in a sandwich. Easy to make (so says my husband who has cooked them 100% of the time I’ve consumed them). The following recipe serves 4 and you will need:

  • olive oil
  • 1 small onion
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 x 400 g good-quality tinned plum tomatoes
  • Red wine vinegar
  • 1 small bunch plus extra handful fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 400 g fresh tuna 
  • 55 g pine nuts
  • 1 level teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 100 g stale breadcrumbs
  • 25 g Parmesan, freshly grated
  • 2 free-range eggs
  • 1 lemon
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

View the full recipe here.

Crisp Tofu Cooked in Tomato-Pepper Sauce Recipe

This tofu recipe from Luke Nguyen gets a good kick from the pepper though you can dial up the chilli component if you like it extra spicy. Serve with steamed rice (and steamed greens if you’re feeling healthy). It takes around 30 minutes from start to finish and serves 4. You will need:

  • 200 ml (7 fl oz) vegetable oil
  • 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) silken tofu, drained and cut into 3 cm (1¼ inch) cubes
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp minced red Asian shallots
  • 1 bird’s eye chilli, finely sliced
  • 4 ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • ½ tspsea salt
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 3 spring onions (scallions), cut into 5 cm (2 inch) lengths
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 coriander (cilantro) sprigs, to garnish

View the full recipe.

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