Just Rice and Veg… If That’s What You Are Into

“Just rice and veg”? I meant to say “a delicious meal”.

As I try to express all ingredients in the names of my foods, I won’t really try to do it with this one.

But what does it have, you may ask? Well, let me tell you! I started by cooking the brown rice in a pressure cooker. I added a ratio of rice to water of 1:2.5, brought it to boil and started counting down 20 minutes cooking time as soon as the cooker was pressurized, in medium/low heat. Make sure the escape valve is spinning around! After 20 minutes, the water will mostly likely not have dried out and the rice not fully cooked. Add a little more water and cook for another 8 minutes.

While the rice was cooking, I caramelized the onions with orange blossom honey. Once the onion was caramelized, I added the chestnut mushrooms, broccoli, leek and a single chopped and seeded chili (lightly spicy, not overwhelming at all!). Added a little water (100ml), 4 whole cloves of garlic and let it boil with the lid on until the water dried. Once the water dried out, add a little olive oil and mix vigorously.

I like adding herbs at the end, with the fire already off. I added a bit cumin and parsley just before serving. Check the rice and season it with a little salted butter or coconut milk.

And, to top it off, a single leaf of basil!


*A nerdy aside: Only use pressure cooker if you know how to operate it! While there is water inside the cooker, it’s fine. If water is present, the internal temperature will be modulated by that of the boiling point of water at that given pressure, i.e. The heat supplied by the fire/heating hub will be used to convert water into steam. Once the water dries out inside, the heat supplied by the fire will be used to expand the air inside (at higher temperatures). As soon as the rate of air escaping the cooker is less than the rate of expansion inside, you are risking an explosion. Modern cookers are fitted with fail safe devices, but they are there in case other things fail, not because you decided to watch a bit of TV! So, be careful!*

Advertisements

Four Chilies, Basil and Olive Sauce

My chilies are almost gone now, unfortunately, so is the basil, and add a bit of olive and what do you get? A delicious sauce! This time, I didn’t remove the seeds just to see how hot I could make the sauce. Yes, it is extremely hot! I used four types of chilies, which I am still trying to find out the type, but I will let you know soon!

Yet again, I found another interesting looking chili. Before, it was the twisted chili pepper… not the joker hat chili? Ah well!

The sauce is quite pungent in taste. I overdid in the amount of olives, which I absolutely love. So far, I tried it in two different ways: First as pasta sauce and second as a burger sauce. Both worked really well. I want to try to marinade a steak to see if it would work… well, I hope so!

Twisted Pepper Sauce: Amongst Other Things

This post contains 5 photos.

Well, maybe it’s time to put some of that gardening products to good use, right?

My basil is grown, with a lot still in its adolescence, my chillies are doing very well, so I decided to make something “inventive”. I have three types of chillies here, but only two with fruits and not yet ripe: But I like green chillies! Anyway… I harvested a few of each and decided to make a sauce, which I will probably be used for my “Twisted Pepper Pasta”, but it will take a few weeks.

Here are the ingredients for this particular concoction:

Freshly picked basil leaves, around 30g of it;


This kind of pepper (help me identify it, please?);


And that pepper (that one too!);


Onion, garlic, honey and olive oil. I deseeded most of the peppers, blended half with the rest of the ingredients and the other half I sliced to mix with the blended paste;


Topped it up with extra virgin olive oil for conservation and flavour extraction and added the twisted pepper on top. As well as some aesthetics, the spices of the pepper will diffuse over the top layer. I will wait a couple of weeks before I use it, in order of the olive oil to extract the flavour of all ingredients.


The initial impression is that the sauce is quite mild and sweet, just the way I like it, but in time, I am expecting it to become spicier. Well, when you can taste the spicy air from chopping the chillies, you can expect something pungent!

Jams, no pectin… all natural!

Apologies for the bad picture quality… my camera has been borrowed!

Lately, I’ve been making a lot of jam… why? Just because I want to test a recipe that I came up with. Is the recipe transferrable to different fruits? The answer is: So far, yes! A base recipe and just exchanging the fruit seem to be working wonders!

What was used so far?

  • Blueberry
  • Blackberry
  • Raspberry
  • Strawberry
  • Banana
  • Beetroot
  • Seedless chillies
  • Red Peppers

Advantages of no pectin jam? (That I have noticed)

  • True flavour: As you boil the water off to gel it up, you taste the true flavour of the fruit… concentrated!
  • If you keep it all organic, you can have an all natural, just as nature intended, good old jam!

Disadvantages of no pectin jam? (That I have noticed)

  • Lower yield: As you need to boil the water off to get that jelly consistency, you get less jam… a lot less, actually;
  • It takes up to 45 minutes to make it, against 5-10mins of a pectin added jam.

Since the recipe has been a trial and error and I adjusted them to my personal preference, well, I will leave up to you to come up with yours!

Baby Hot Sauce!

This is what hot sauce looks like, before being all delicious and all…

This is the testimony of how impulsive I can be. A friend of mine at work was giving out chili seedlings that I thought I’d get myself some… I decided to take whatever was left there. Just two little pots with a few… why not? Yeah, big miscalculation! I now have 50 seedlings! They are now all spread out around the house due to the lack of space. What to do? Well, I will produce a very large amount of chilies and will have a few burrito parties!

By the way, gardening is my new addiction! I forgot how much I enjoy it! New posts to follow!