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Easy to Prepare Foods and Leftovers for Summer
© Sue Courtney
30 January 2005

Lazy summer days mean barbecues, easy to prepare foods and leftovers the next day.

Here are some of the recipes I've made and would like to make again.

* Bubbly Scones
* Herbed Meat Patties for the BBQ
* Dukkah encrusted Pork fillet
* Easy Salmon Pasta
* Leftover Pasta Fritters for Breakfast
* Dukkak Filled Mushroom Caps
* Leftover Potato and Rice patties with chicken

Bubbly Scones
I've been making a scone bread type of thing every weekend the last few months for our lazy Saturday or Sunday morning snack come lunch. The base recipe I use was given to me by a cook at Tongariro Ski Club (on Mt Ruapehu) many years ago.

It is simply: -

2 cups of flour
1 and 1/2 teaspoons of cream of tartar and 3/4 teaspoon of baking soda (or 2 teaspoons of baking powder)
1 tablespoons of melted butter
3/4 cup of a mix of milk and water.

I like savoury scones so any combination of what is on hand is mixed into the dough. Favourite combos include:

Tomatoes, feta cheese and fennel fern (skin the tomatoes before chopping into the mix)
Cheese, herbs and bacon,
And so on.

I wondered if there was another recipe out there that was as simple, where you didn’t have to take cold butter and 'rub it in', as I learnt in school cooking class. Being too lazy to get up and browse through my countless recipe books, I googled instead. Up came the old 'cream and can of lemonade' recipe that was a bit of a fad a few years ago. I could substitute bubbly for the lemonade, I thought. And so I did. It was left over from the watermelon soup (see Nov/Dec recipes).

Scone Loaf - photo S Courtney

Here's the simple recipe for Bubbly Scones: -

3 cups of flour
3 teaspoons of baking powder
1 cup of cream
1 cup of sparkling wine

Add a few chopped herbs – e.g. fresh coriander leaves, fennel fern and chives, and cheese if you want to. Shape into an oblong loaf and decoraste with seasonal produce like tomatoes and capsicums. Bake in a hot (220) oven for about 15 to 20 minutes.
Wrap in a clean tea towel and place on a rack, to rest before serving.

Verdict – delicious. A fabulous summer morning brunch treat.

Herbed Meat Patties for the BBQ
These are great because you can prepare them before you go to the beach or wherever for the day, then they are ready to cook when you get home.

Take about 500 grams of minced beef or lamb (or a mix of both).
Mix in freshly picked herbs from the garden or kitchen pots. I used mint, basil, parsley, chives, thyme, sage and coriander.
Blend up the herbs with 2 slices of fresh bread and mix into the meat together with salt and pepper.
Add an egg to bind and a splash of teriyaki marinade (bought as such from an Asian Foods shop).
Form the mixture into patties.
Cover with cling wrap and put into the fridge for at least half and hour to rest before cooking.
Cook on the barbecue plate.

Accompany with a juicy Pinotage. I recommend Te Awa 2002, Babich 2002, Lincoln 2003 or Muddy Water 2003 from recent tastings.

Dukkah encrusted Pork fillet
Take one or two fresh pork fillets and remove any of the fibrous fatty membrane that remains.
Wash and dry the fillets then coat in a good quality extra virgin oil.
Now roll the fillets in a dukkah blend , such as Auckland-based Alexandra Nuts Aromatic Dukkah made with almonds, pistachios, sesame seed, coriander, fennel and other natural spices. Coat the fillets all over.
Place fillets into a dish and bake in a hot oven (200?C) for 7-8 minutes, turn the fillet over and bake for 7-8 minutes further.
Let rest for a couple of minutes, then slice into medallions.
Absolutely delicious with Villa Maria Taylors Pass Single Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2004, or any other strongly pungent Marlborough style.

Easy Salmon Pasta – for Two
If you have the ingredients ready, this only takes 5 minutes to cook. It was a life saver at the end of big sauvignon blanc tasting.

Take one 300 gm packet of fresh fettucine and cook according to directions. This takes about 3 minutes in salted boiling water.
Take 100gm packet of smoked salmon pieces (I use pieces for this recipe, as they are cheaper than the fine slices).
Meat some butter in a frying pan and saute a couple of tablespoons of finely chopped spring onions or shallots.
Now add the whole packet of salmon pieces and quickly stir fry for no more than 30 seconds before adding 1/4 cup of cream.
Stir in a freshly chopped herbs, such as basil or coriander.
Drain the pasta and put 1/3 aside for breakfast the next morning.
Divide the remaining pasta into two plates.
Place half the salmon cream mixture on each.
Stir through and serve immediately.

This recipe with its bright herb flavours is great with Sauvignon Blanc but it is also excellent with a herbal nuanced Pinot Gris.

Leftover Pasta Fritters for Breakfast
Chop up the leftover pasta from the previous recipe.
Add ½ cup flour, 1 beaten egg, a chopped up spring onion or shallot and chopped fresh summer leafy herbs such as basil, coriander and parsley, to taste.
Pasta Fritters, Bacon, Slow Roasted Tomatoes and Mushrooms - photo S Courtney Drop in large spoonful lots into a hot oiled pan and cook 2 or so minutes each side. Serve with bacon, slow roasted tomatoes and dukkah filled mushroom caps.

Dukkah Filled Mushroom Caps and Slow Roasted Tomatoes
Take some reasonable sized fresh cultivated mushrooms – not the big portobellos – you want ones that are no bigger than 5cm in diameter.
Drop in a little dukkah into each cap and top with a knob of butter. Cook in the oven along side the slow roasting tomatoes that have been halved and drizzled with sugar, balsamic vinegar and olive oil then topped with a basil leaf.

Leftover Potato and Rice Cakes with left over chicken
Sometimes it is worth cooking extra for dinner, so you have the leftovers for a lazy summer brunch. This recipe needs –

- 1 cup well cooked rice
- 1 cup mashed potato
- 2 spring onions, finely sliced
- some cooked chicken breast – slice up some fresh chicken breast and quickly cook in a little oil and butter if necessary
- A couple of rashers of bacon – these also need to be cooked. If cooking the chicken, then saute the bacon first to allow the bacon fat to expel, then this will infuse into the chicken
- A few finely chopped coriander leaves
- Flour
- Salt and Pepper
- Chili Sauce (optional)
- 1 beaten egg and fine breadcrumbs (optional)

Combine the mashed potato with the rice, cooked and chopped bacon, sliced and sauteed spring onions and the cooked chicken.
Add the chopped up coriander leaves, salt and pepper for seasoning and a dash of chili sauce if desired.
Stir to combine. It should start clinging to naturally form a ball.
Form into two big patties for an impressive looking feast.
Put into the fridge for about half an hour.
Coat the patties with flour.
Dip the coated patties into a beaten egg mix and then breadcrumbs, if desired.
Fry on a gentle heat for several minutes on each side until golden.

Note, chicken is not necessary. Leftover ham could be substituted while meat can be totally omitted if one desires.

**********

Sue Courtney's recipes are all original creations unless otherwise stated. Recipes are inspired by the season and by the wine matches.

Kia pai te kai

© Sue Courtney
January 2005


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