Steak with Sauce a la Creme

Aside from the steak, these are the essential ingredients:

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Brandy and double cream. Everything else is an add on. Having said that, a really good blast of pepper is really good.

Personally, I always think a really good piece of steak needs nothing doing to it. However, a really good piece of steak can be hard to come by sometimes. In that eventuality, then this is a sauce which can make quite a difference!

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Just as an aside, switch the brandy for calvados, the steak for pork and some of the onion with apple and you have one of my ultimate favorate things! But that’s for another day.

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Fry off the steak to you preferred level of doneness and add the brandy.

Flambe and reduce. If you want to add butter then this is a good time to do it. For me, butter make this too rich.

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Remove the steak to a hot plate to rest. While the steak is resting add onion, garlic and mushroom to the pan and soften down. As things start to soften add in the double cream.

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Don’t add in too much cream or you will wreck it. A teaspoonful at a time and keep testing until you’ve got it. When the sauce is properly cooked through and pour over the steak.

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This is really good with plain boiled potatoes and those small green beans. And a good bottle of red wine.

Langoustines Vauclusienne

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Firstly, an admission. This is a straight steal from my food hero Keith Floyd. Do you realise that 2015 marks 30yrs since Floyd on Fish hit network television? Amazing.

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What you need: Langoustines, tomato sauce, onion, garlic, brandy, white wine, chilli sauce, olive oil, butter.

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Cook the langoustines in some olive oil with the onion and gently flambé.

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Add in the white wine and reduce for a minute or two. Then add in the rest.

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This is really good, really simple and so typical of Floyd. Here is the clip. Notice the philosophy on his approach. See what’s good, buy it and THEN decide how to cook it!

Tequila Flambe Chicken Thighs With A Hot Salsa

What do you eat?

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The chicken thigh was rubbed with salt, pepper, paprika and turmeric prior to frying to both colour and flavour the meat. The thigh was allowed to steam in the remaining tequila for a short time following flambe. A very small sliver of butter was added to the reduced pan juices and spooned over the rested chicken.

The hot salsa is made from celery, tomato, green pepper, red onion, garlic, chilli pepper, cider vinegar and olive oil. The mix was cooked in a hot sauce pan. It is important that the crunch of the ingredients is maintained for both flavour and texture.

The plate was finished with asparagus and a very generous dressing of chopped parsley.

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Mussels Steamed in West Country Cider

Steaming mussels open in wine does create a wonderful kitchen aroma and when combined with a small amount of cream, onion and parsley the outcome is divine. It kind of gives me the illusion I’ve made something seriously “posh resturant”, if you know what I mean. Having said that, personally, I think plain steaming in just water and lemon juice is fine. Then the mussels really come to fore. A really, really good alternative to all of that is steaming in apple cider. But it does have to be seriously good cider. Not the cheap tinned mass market cider, that doesn’t work. Here in Somerset we are fortunate to have the best cider there is! (no bias, of course).

I really like it that mussels are now plentifully available in everyday supermarkets. People arn’t afraid of them anymore. We’ve come along way in the last thirty years.

What do you eat?

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The mussels were steamed open using A good quality Somerset cider. Once off the heat, a generous amount of well diced onion, basil and parsley was stirred into the pot before serving.

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Re – Booting

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Dear All,

Well if Star Trek, James Bond and others can re-boot it then so can I.

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If anyone follows this blog they may have noticed my sudden disappearance. Truth is I was overtaken by a couple of personal issues which had to take priority for a while. I can assure you that is now in the past and I am healthy and happy. However my planning and scheduling has been totally trashed. I have to start again.

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Mind you, I’ve not been sitting still. I now have quite a backlog of material to share with you over the coming months. The real challenge is finding time to write it all up!

Cheers,

Mike.

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Chicken and Chorizo Arrabbiata

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You would do this with penne pasta or those pasta twists (spirella?). For dietary reasons I cannot. For my purposes, here, a couple of slices of bread will do just nicely.

Rightly or wrongly, I always associate arrabbiata with Italian cooking. I do know that this is a great sauce that goes so, so well with grilled and fried meats. This time I’m using chicken and chorizo. Chicken and Chorizo is a magical combination. The strong flavors of the sauce and the chorizo work so well in outdoor cooking. I’m told that most taste is actually smell. Outdoors, the aroma get dispersed unlike the confines of a kitchen or dining room and so strong flavors tend to work much better than bland ones.

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For the sauce I’ve got tomato, onion and garlic into which I will stir in a hot sauce. You might use fresh chilli. I really wish I had some basil with me. I think a small amount of pesto would be good. I’ve put the chicken and the chorizo with some green bell pepper on to skewers. I’ve done that because is makes them easier to handle in this environment.

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Fry off the chicken and Chorizo. I like to get mine quite well cooked off so the outside is slightly crispy.

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I’ve put the skewers on one side and put all of the sauce ingredients in to the pot in one go.

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And here we are. I have no doubt that proper chef types out there could do a lot to refine and sophisticate this. But I really like this. For fast, easy on the hoof eating this is definaltely a winner!