Saturday, 24 May 2014

My Junior Master Chef- Round 2:part 1

I don't want to leave you all in suspense- no doubt you want to see what team 2 came up with tonight. 
Well I don't know about you but I have a feeling that Drew & I may have taken things a little bit too seriously last night ;) 

Here is our menu & theme tonight. Beautifully made menu & we are all excited to find out what 'Dog Park' might entail. 

Our entree:: Chicken & Vegetable Dippers.....with very interesting presentation. 
Delicious! This dish earned two thumbs up from the judge (are you noticing that he has a very consistent approach to scoring).

MAIN:: Hotdogs

Sausages cooked to perfection & a choice of sauces impressed all. In fact we were also offered BOTH sauce options at once- woohoo! Sparing no expense here. 

DESSERT:: Dog Park!!!! ????

The judge's first question was 'what did this represent?' Thank goodness he asked! Our junior master chef explained that the choc mint ice- cream represents the grass at the dog park & the chocolate mousse........ Well!!! As I said Drew & I were way too serious in our approach. 

This was a fabulously hilarious dinner enjoyed by all. How could we possibly compare the two meals?

 The judge is very wise & declared it a tie!! 

Friday, 23 May 2014

My Junior Master Chef Rules- Round 2

A few months ago we set a family cooking challenge- I wrote about it here.  Since then we have moved house and we have finally settled in which meant that the boys have been demanding another cook-off.
We switched up the teams this time and set to planning.

First up is team 1- Mum and Drew.

Again, we tried to plan our meal around the things that are most likely to impress our judge. We also had to decide on a theme. After much deliberation we came up with 'European Holiday' as our theme and we planned to travel around Europe with each course.

Join us on our journey:

Passport menus- created at the very last minute in between prepping food. We weren't as organised this round and it was a bit trickier cooking on a Friday night because we didn't have the whole day to plan and prepare.

ENTREE:: Ravioli
Our entree started in Italy with chicken, basil and ricotta ravioli. This was Drew's first attempt at making pasta and he did a great job. We rolled the pasta beautifully thin and Drew was in charge of making the filling and assembling the ravioli. While we fussed about with the menu our tomato sauce thickened up a bit too much, so we decided to quickly create a butter and basil sauce instead. It was delicious!!!

MAIN:: Schnitzel
We travelled to Germany for our main and for Andrew's favourite food- Schnitzel!!! He breaded it all himself and added a lovely little secret ingredient to the crumbs... grated parmesan. Nice addition! The tomato sauce we made for the entree was perfect dolloped onto the plate to have with the schnitzel- great save. We added some crispy potatoes and fresh asparagus and our main was served.

DESSERT:: Profiteroles
Over to France for dessert, although our full bellies needed a short stop over before we could manage our dessert. I was in charge of dessert, but it was all Drew's idea ;) I used this easy recipe. We got the choux pastry going before our entree and they were baked and ready to go after the entree was served. I managed to whip up the creme patissiere (with real vanilla beans too) in between courses and we just dunked them straight into the melted chocolate once they were filled. There were grand plans for some gorgeous drizzling effects, but by that stage we were a bit over it and happy to just eat them! 

The overall verdict???
The judge gave each course..... two thumbs up!! He obviously approved.
We are handing it over to team two now and we can't wait to what they come up with and especially what the judge has to say about their cooking. 

Friday, 9 May 2014

The Tree Change

I just checked to see when I last wrote- I knew it had been a while, but I hadn't realised how much time had slipped through my fingers. That's what happens when you move house.

We have done something quite exciting but not too drastic. We have moved to the outskirts onto a farm, but still only a short drive into the city (although somedays that drive doesn't feel very short).

We are surrounded by trees, fresh air and joy. We are all more relaxed, feeling more creative and enjoying the simple pleasures. There is still lots to explore and uncover in our new surrounds and we can't wait to see what we find. Autumn has been the perfect time to come back to nature- everything is so crisp- the air, the colours, the light.

We are all content and not missing suburbian life at all, or our old house, but it is all there waiting for us if we change our minds. Do you think we will?

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