Saturday, May 10, 2008

Starting from scratch

My second weekend here I made a trip to Adelaide's Central Market which is located near China Town. The market is wonderful with produce that ranges from your everyday needs to the exotic and in all kinds and grades. I picked up some shaved Hungarian ham and Pepperoni cold cuts to take home for sandwiches and sizing up the plump chicken thighs in the market I decided to whip up a zesty chicken dish adapted from my cousin Dhiren's recipe.
Dhiren who is in the hotel industry makes a whole roasted chicken with orange and thyme, stuffed with bacon. This dish is a favourite of mine and I improvised a little. I made a simple sweet, herbed vinegrette marinade for the chicken, rubbing the flesh in honey, rosemary and thyme and then topped it off with about three or four slices of navel oranges.

Before putting it into the baking tray, I wrapped some generously long strips of bacon around the chicken thighs. Off it went in the oven to get beautifully browned while I put together a spinach and mushroom sauce, laced with creme, for the pasta that I thought wiuld balance out the strong orange flavours. A simple fresh salad of iceberg lettuce, cherry tomatoes and fetta cheese and olives with balsamic dressing was crisp and went well with the meal.

The following Sunday I embarked on Spaghetti Bolagnaise - my mother's recipe that turned out pretty well. Hearty, rich meat sauce that made me go back for seconds!

Having gained some confidence in the kitchen I took it once step further - calling mother dearest for tips on how to prepare her signature dish - Moussaka. I have watched my mum make this dish so many times, so the process seems ingrained within me. Well, it wasn't hard and tasted yummy!

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