Friday, December 18, 2015

Brodetto - a seafood feast for Christmas

I took one of Silvia Colloca's recipes and adapted it to our family, so thank you to Silvia.  She is a wonderful Italian cook who lives in Australia.  This dish looks and tastes spectacular, and you can adapt it for more people. This is for 4 people.
What I love about the dish is that it is lighter than similar dishes like paella, and it is very relaxing to chat over mussels at Christmas and the cook does not get stressed.
You can make this over one day - but who wants all that work at Christmas!  Instead most of the work is done a day ahead and by the fishmonger, all I had to do on the day was heat up some sauce, chop some parsley, add a few bits and cook the mussels - all in all it took about 10 minutes.  Use a large flat bottom pot to cook the sauce in, one that goes to the table. 
Buy pot ready seafood and its a breeze, by that I mean mussels and pippies that have been prepared, with no bits hanging off them, and pre filleted snapper as well as prawns that have been peeled and deveined. You can vary the seafood, buy what is good and fresh and what you enjoy (calamari would be good).  I also think some saffron would be a nice addition if you are so inclined.  Do not overcook the seafood, a few minutes is all they need.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Quick Pickled Vegetables

OK, I admit it, I am obsessed.  I love quick pickles as a way of adding to a summer salad and jazzing up vegetables.

This is the basic pickled vegetable recipe, and can be adapted to any vegetable.  The trick is to combine herbs and spices that you enjoy.  Use the pickles in salads, on sandwiches or as side dishes, they are great for summer.  They make great Christmas presents too.

It is a very forgiving recipe, and I have often chopped the herbs in the blender with the water before adding them all to the pot.

You can keep these for up to 5 days in the fridge, or use them after about 1 hour.

Cooked vegetables, pickles, homemade ketchup