Get your hiking boots girl…

Really nice steak for dinner

I don’t even think this has a name.

I was using up stuff from my fridge that were beginning to look a little less than fresh.

Believe it or not I didn’t go food shopping over the weekend…went clothes shopping Saturday morning and had every intention to food shop after that and by that I mean after clothes shopping and coffee and scones with jam and cream with a friend.

Getting back to my car my friend pointed out that my car was missing something very important…license plates! WTF!!!

A visit to the Police Station and a Police report later and that was the end of my day! The thought of some ass wipe committing a crime with my license plate on some car they’ve stolen and trying to pin the blame on me…well…may fleas and other nasties infest your nether regions and set up camp forever you effn f@*#er!!!

It was hot and humid and my arse was not going anywhere after all that! Even the idea of finally picking up my Spanish white anchovies wasn’t enough to motivate me such was my black mood.

Sorry, crazy mood over…and then it was a new day!

A beautiful day yesterday saw us out for lunch by the bay in Williamstown and then a long drive to Daylesford to peruse the local antique shops and galleries and a rather luke warm, vomit inducing ‘iced’ chocolate..horrible! I only felt better when I walked into an actual real book store with actual real books and found a copy of Anthony Bourdain’s “Kitchen Confidential”…had to buy it as some effn swine stole it from my bookshelf many years ago…I think Mr. Bourdain is wonderful.

So with my smile planted nicely back on my face I made us a nice dinner tonight to farewell my daughter who is off camping for the rest of the week. You have no idea how funny this is to me. She hates camping and hiking and bugs and everything that goes with it and so does her boy friend but his dad has insisted that they all go off camping and hiking this week…the pleasure I will get from the torture she will suffer this week is rather perverse I know but I can’t help it…she says I’m evil and she may just be right!

My daughter is happier shopping than hiking!

So, what went into this…a nice cut of steak, leeks, red onion, asparagus with Marsala, cream and blue cheese sauce sitting on a bed of lettuce…pretty damn good actually.  

Nothing Special!

Steak with fried Gnocchi

A lot of people post about great food they have had at a great place or about something new they have tried at home and don’t get me wrong, I do that too.

But tonight I’m too stuffed to be fancy. Last nights’ Parent/Teacher Interviews did me in. Having a 70th birthday party to go to straight after this talk fest with parents that finished at 7pm didn’t help. Today I dragged my arse into work looking haggard and after having spoken to 70 parents was not in a talkative mood…difficult when you are a teacher… apparently communication is a key part of my job!

I wanted to be curled up on my couch in my pjs watching the hail come down but I was teaching my Year 7 English class…well, not really teaching as every single kid had their faces plastered to the window watching the hail storm…not much teaching going on. I had no interest in the storm and so just sat in my not too comfy chair and thought about my dinner…steak, fried gnocchi and creamy mustard stuff poured over the top!

I love gnocchi done this way and I like my steak rare and usually like it cooked on a grill but tonight I wanted it just like my mother used to make – fried in a pan on high heat in loads of wonderful butter. My work here is done!

Later tonight I’m going to brew me some strong coffee and finish off that cake I brought home for myself from the birthday party last night – a sponge cake soused in frangelico, filled with nutella and topped with icing sugar – life is much better now!

Eat well = Live Well

Mid Week Madness.

My daughter is in her final year of high school, which translates to “I am in my last year of high school.”  Whatever pain and stress she feels, I feel it too.

I’m a high school teacher so our house is full of books and the conversation rarely strays from what a particular author really meant when he/she wrote blah, blah, blah! Metaphors, symbolism, structuring paragraphs and embedding quotes is the usual after dinner conversation as I don’t allow these conversations to take place at the dinner table.

We all need to have a bit of a laugh and I love it when this happens whilst we eat. No matter how tired I am, dinner is always a priority. This never means spending hours in the kitchen slaving away. It is more than possible to eat good hearty meals without it having to kill you.

I’ve spent a lot of time stocking my pantry and freezer in order to have all the herbs, spices, sauces, meat and packet stuff handy to make cooking after a hard day effortless. Shopping for everything is what takes the biggest effort and as I love shopping for the pantry and freezer, it really isn’t much effort at all.

We love steak and fries in our house and one of the best things I saw Nigella Lawson do was shallow fry gnocchi. Instead of peeling potatoes to go with our steak and salad, frying up gnocchi takes 5 mins and there’s no peeling or cutting potatoes or deep frying involved. Simply open a packet of gnocchi and shallow fry. They are crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. Perfect for any night of the week.

It took 10 mins to make this meal for 3 people. It’s a favourite in our house.

There’s no recipe just make your steak and salad as you like it and shallow fry the gnocchi. I add a bit of mayonnaise and mustard and topped it all off with coriander.

*A side note…my friend at work made these and said they popped all over her kitchen like popcorn and she spent the rest of the night cleaning up splattered oil and looking for lost gnocchi. She wasn’t happy with me at all!

We worked out that she used too much oil in a saucepan and used fresh gnocchi straight from the fridge. I used the vacuum sealed packs of gnocchi that can be stored in the pantry and enough oil to coat the bottom of a wide heavy based frying pan. If you are using fresh fridge stored gnocchi make sure they have dried out a little as the moisture in them apparently makes them go nuts when frying!