Sticky Hoisin Ribs

If you are a fan of ribs and are awaiting barbecue season, then this oven baked ribs recipe is one to try. Tender, fall of the bone meat with a sticky, sweet and salty hoisin glaze. These ribs are always a hit with my family. The ribs are first brined in the fridge. Then they are steamed in the oven before being slathered in hoisin sauce and caramelised to perfection.

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Key Ingredients

(see below for full list of ingredients)

  • Pork Ribs: I get these from my local supermarket and they come cut into individual ribs (as opposed to the whole rack).
  • Salt: This is the key ingredient for making a brine. Brine is basically a solution containing salt and water. It can also contain herbs and spices for extra flavour. Meat can be soaked in brine and this causes the meat to absorb the water. In this recipe soaking the ribs in a salt-water-spice solution adds depth of flavour and the salt also makes the meat on the ribs more succulent.
  • Hoisin Sauce: I personally love Lee Kum Kee hoisin sauce. It has a lovely sweet and salty flavour with a hint of garlic. It’s quite concentrated, so a little goes a long way.

How To Make Sticky Hoisin Ribs

Step One: Add 3 cloves garlic minced, 1 tbsp onion powder, 2 tsp salt and 1.5 tsp brown sugar to a medium sized baking dish. Add enough water to just add a layer of liquid to the bottom of the dish and mix well until the sugar and salt has dissolved.

Step Two: Add in the ribs and make sure they are coated in the liquid. Top up with warm/room temperature water such that the ribs are completely submerged in liquid.

Step Three: Cover with clingfilm and place the baking dish in the fridge for 2 hours to over night.

Step Four: Preheat your oven to 180 °C fan (200 °C conventional/Gas Mark 6/400 °F).

Step Five: Transfer the ribs to another baking dish and cover with foil. Discard the brine. Bake the ribs with the foil on for 40 minutes. Increase the heat to 200 °C fan (220 °C conventional/Gas Mark 7/425 °F).

Step Six: Brush the ribs all over with half of the hoisin sauce (50 g) and return the ribs to the oven for a further 10 minutes.

Step Seven: Brush the ribs all over with the remaining (50 g) of hoisin sauce and turn the ribs over. Cook for another 10 minutes until the ribs are starting to go brown and the sauce begins to caramelise.

How To Serve Sticky Hoisin Ribs

  • For a Chinese style meal serve with stir fried noodles and vegetables, or fried rice.
  • Ribs are a great addition to a fakeaway – sometimes I also cook ribs on pizza night.

Tips for Making Sticky Hoisin Ribs

  • The brine really does add flavour to the meat. Even if you only have enough time to brine the ribs in the fridge for an hour do not skip this step. Brining the ribs over night is more ideal.
  • These can also be cooked on the barbecue. Just follow the steps to when the ribs are steamed in the oven (Step 5) and then finish the ribs off on the barbecue.

Sticky Hoisin Ribs Recipe


Serves:
4
Preparation Time:
5 mins
(plus 2 hours to over night for brining)
Cooking Time:
1 hour

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1.5 tsp brown sugar
  • hot water and warm water
  • 700 g pork ribs
  • 100 g Hoisin sauce

METHOD

  1. Add the garlic, onion powder, salt and sugar to a medium sized baking dish. Add enough water to just add a layer of liquid to the bottom of the dish and mix well until the sugar and salt has dissolved.
  2. Add in the ribs and make sure they are coated in the liquid. Top up with warm/room temperature water such that the ribs are completely submerged in liquid.
  3. Cover with clingfilm and place the baking dish in the fridge for 2 hours to over night.
  4. Preheat oven to 180 °C fan (200 °C conventional/Gas Mark 6/400 °F).
  5. Transfer the ribs to another baking dish and cover with foil. Discard the brine. Bake the ribs with the foil on for 40 minutes. Increase the heat to 200 °C fan (220 °C conventional/Gas Mark 7/425 °F).
  6. Brush the ribs all over with hoisin sauce and return the ribs to the oven for a further 10 minutes.
  7. Brush the ribs all over with a second coat of hoisin sauce and turn the ribs over. Cook for another 10 minutes until the ribs are starting to go brown and the sauce begins to caramelise.

Turkish-Style Yoghurt Soup with Chicken and Wild Rice

This rich chicken soup contains yoghurt and shredded chicken for protein, hearty wild rice and a delicious paprika garlic butter. I first tried this at one of my local Turkish restaurants. I loved it, and knew I had to learn to make it myself. It’s such an easy soup to make. Great for lunches, or when you’re feeling under the weather, and it also makes an impressive starter.

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Key Ingredients

(see below for full list of ingredients)

  • Chicken Fillets and Chicken Stock: The base of the soup is chicken stock. The shredded chicken meat makes it more fulfilling.
  • Egg Yolk and Yoghurt: Add a slight thickness and creaminess to the soup, though it’s not as creamy as most british soups which normally contain cream. The yoghurt also adds a slight tanginess which works well with the paprika and garlic.
  • Wild Rice: The rice gives this soup more substance and makes it really hearty. Traditional recipes use white rice however, I use wild rice in my version as it has a slight nutty flavour that balances well with the rest of the soup flavours.
  • Paprika Garlic Butter: Think of this as a soup garnish, but it gives the soup flavours more of a wow factor and adds a lovely red/orange colour to the soup.

How To Make Turkish-Style Yoghurt Soup with Chicken and Wild Rice

Step One: In a small saucepan bring 240 ml water to the boil. Add in 90 g wild rice and lower the heat. Simmer with the lid on for around 50 minutes until the rice is cooked.

Step Two: In the meantime add 1 tbsp olive oil to a large saucepan on a medium heat add one medium onion diced and cook for around 5 minutes until softened.

Step Three: Add in one carrot diced and cook for a further 3 minutes.

Step Four: Add in 500 g chicken thigh or breast fillets, along with 1 litre chicken stock, and simmer for 25 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.

Step Five: Drain and remove the chicken fillets. Use two forks to pull the meat apart so that it is shredded. Set aside.

Step Six: Strain the chicken stock. Discard the carrot and onion.

Step Seven: In a large bowl add in 240 ml plain yoghurt, one egg yolk and 2 tbsp plain flour. Whisk together until smooth.

Step Eight: Spoon the chicken stock into the yoghurt-egg yolk-flour mixture around 2 tablespoonfuls at a time to begin with and whisk thoroughly. Gradually add in more and more stock until all the stock has been incorporated. Really go slow with this step so that the egg doesn’t curdle.

Step Nine: Add this mixture back into the saucepan along with the shredded chicken and cooked wild rice. Simmer for a further 5 minutes.

Step Ten: Make the paprika garlic butter. In a small frying pan heat 2 tbsp unsalted butter over a medium-low heat. Add in 3 cloves garlic crushed, 2 tsp paprika and 0.25 tsp cayenne pepper. Fry for around 3 minutes until the garlic starts to go brown.

Step Eleven: Either add the paprika garlic butter mixture to the rest of the soup and stir in, or dish the soup into four bowls and drizzle decoratively with the paprika garlic butter.

How To Serve Turkish-Style Yoghurt Soup with Chicken and Wild Rice

  • This can be eaten as a meal on its own.
  • You can also serve this with crusty bread.

Tips for Making Turkish-Style Yoghurt Soup with Chicken and Wild Rice

  • You can substitute white rice (basmati or long grain) for wild rice. In fact this is a great dish for using up leftover cooked rice.
  • You can also substitute the chicken fillets with cooked chicken (like left over roast chicken), just add the cooked chicken in at the end with the rice.
  • Be sure to add the stock to the yoghurt-egg yolk-flour mixture very gradually to prevent the egg from curdling. Really be patient with this step – it’s totally worth it.
  • You can also make this dairy free by substituting the yoghurt with oatgurt, and you can substitute the butter with olive oil.
  • If making this as a cold and flu remedy add in an additional 2 crushed cloves of garlic at Step Four when the stock is added to the pan.

Turkish-Style Yoghurt Soup with Chicken and Wild Rice Recipe


Serves:
4
Preparation Time:
10 minutes
Cooking Time:
55 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 240 ml water
  • 90 g wild rice
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 carrot diced
  • 500 g skinless and boneless chicken thigh fillets
  • 1 litre chicken stock
  • 240 ml plain yoghurt
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 0.25 tsp cayenne pepper
  • salt and pepper to taste

METHOD

  1. Bring the water to the boil, add in the rice, then turn down the heat to a simmer. Cook the rice with the lid on for 50 minutes.
  2. In the meantime add the olive oil to a large saucepan and heat on a medium heat. Add the onions and cook for around 5 minutes until soft.
  3. Add the carrot and cook for a further 3 minutes.
  4. Add in the chicken and the stock. Cover with lid and simmer for 25 minutes.
  5. Remove the chicken fillets and use two forks to pull the chicken apart shredding the meat.
  6. Strain the stock. Discard the onions and carrot.
  7. In a large bowl add the yoghurt, egg white and flour, and whisk well until smooth.
  8. Spoon a little stock into the yoghurt-egg-flour mixture and whisk. Gradually add in more and more stock whisking well until the mixture becomes more liquid and all the stock is incorporated.
  9. Add this back into the saucepan with the shredded chicken and cooked rice, and place on a low heat to simmer for a further 5 minutes.
  10. Heat the butter in a frying pan over a medium-low heat. Once the butter has melted add in the garlic, followed by the paprika and cayenne pepper.
  11. Add this paprika garlic butter mixture to the rest of the soup. Stir and serve.

Paratha Roti

I love bread and pretty much anything full of carbs (though I really do try hard to to make sure I eat in moderation – so difficult). I’ve been experimenting with flat breads such as naan and tortillas, but I’m really loving roti at the moment, especially the Trinidadian-style paratha roti which also goes by the edgy name of “buss up shut”. This flat bread is soft but is super flaky. It is normally eaten with meat or lentil curries as the flaky texture of the roti makes it perfect for dipping into sauces. In Trinidad the colloquial term “buss up shut” refers a shirt that worn and torn up, the texture of the flaky parathas looks similar to this, hence the alias of “buss up shut” when referring to the roti.

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Rotis are surprisingly made from only a few basic ingredients that you’re already likely to have in your kitchen: flour, water, sugar , salt, oil, baking powder and butter. It is the technique when making the dough that produces the flakiness. In essence the dough is rolled out flat and brushed with butter before being rolled into a special cone shape and left to rest. Prior to cooking these dough cones are rolled out flat. It is the layers of dough separated by the butter that produces the flakes.


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Paratha Roti Recipe

Makes: 8 rotis
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 25 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 450 g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 0.5 tsp salt
  • 0.5 tsp caster sugar
  • 220 ml water
  • 115 g butter melted

METHOD

  1. In a large bowl add the flour, baking powder, oil, salt and sugar and mix well.
  2. Add the water in use your hands to form a dough. Knead it in the bowl for 2-3 minutes. Cover with clingfilm and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
  3. Divide the dough into eight balls.
  4. On a floured surface use a rolling pin to roll the dough out into a thin circle approximately 27-28 cm in diameter.
  5. Brush the top surface of the dough circle with some of the melted butter and then lightly sprinkle some flour on top.
  6. Cut a radial slit from the centre of the dough circle to the edge. Take the dough at one edge of the slit and roll the dough into a tall cone enveloping the buttered surface. Place the cone on a plate and push inwards the peak of the cone.
  7. Repeat steps 4 to 6 for the remaining dough balls. Cover with clingfilm and leave these slightly flattened dough cones to rest for a further 30 minutes.
  8. On a low-medium heat brush the base of a frying pan with butter. Roll one of the dough cones out on a floured surface such that it forms a 28 cm diameter circle again. I use a Tefal frying pan for this, click here for more details.
  9. Place on the frying pan and brush the top surface with melted butter. Allow it to cook for around 3 minutes until it begins to puff up. Flip it over and allow the roti to cook for a further 3 minutes.
  10. Repeat steps 8 to 9 for the remaining dough cones.

NOTES

  • Serve with lentils or a curry.
  • These are also ideal for making wraps.

Special Egg Drop Soup

Egg Drop Soup is a must when I eat out at a Chinese restaurant. That thick, clear soup normally with chicken and sweetcorn or seafood and ribbons of egg is my go to starter. It’s surprisingly easy to make.

Since I’ve learned to make it at home I’ve found that it’s perfect for cold and flu season. My version contains a mix of chicken, king prawns, shitake mushrooms, pak choi and ginger, so it’s packed full of protein and essential virus fighting nutrients.

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Special Egg Drop Soup Recipe

Serves: 6
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Marinating Time: 1 hour
Baking/Cooking Time: 25 minutes

INGREDIENTS

For the fried garlic garnish:

  • 6 cloves garlic finely chopped

For the soup:

  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 cm piece garlic finely chopped
  • 375 g chicken thigh fillets
  • 1 piece star anise
  • 1.5 litres chicken stock
  • 80 g frozen Sweet corn
  • 165 g prawns
  • shitake mushrooms sliced
  • pak choi sliced
  • 1.5 tsp shioxing rice wine
  • 0.5 tsp ground black pepper
  • 3 tbsp corn flour
  • 3 eggs beaten
  • 4 spring onions finely sliced for garnish

METHOD

  1. Fry the chopped garlic until golden. Pace in a metal sieve placed on a plate with kitchen roll to absorb the oil.
  2. Fry the onion, garlic and ginger until soft. Add in the chicken and star anise.
  3. Remove the chicken and set aside.
  4. Add the stock to the remaining onion and garlic. Simmer for 7-10 minutes with the lid on.
  5. Strain and add the stock back to pot.
  6. Bring it to a simmer. Add the sweetcorn, prawns, mushrooms, pak choi and chicken. Simmer until prawns are pink.
  7. Add the Shioxing wine and pepper.
  8. Make a cornflour slurry by adding water to the cornflour and mixing well. Add 4-6 tbsp of the soup and mix well before adding the slurry to the rest of the soup. Mix well as the soup thickens.
  9. Drizzle the egg into the soup to make egg ribbons.
  10. Serve in bowls topped with the fried garlic and spring onions.

Chicken Satay

Chicken Satay skewers are one of my favourite starters. What’s not to love? Succulent bites of chicken are marinated in lemongrass and curry. They are then accompanied by a sweet peanut dipping sauce that complements the spices so well. And bonus, it is so easy to make authentic tasting chicken satay at home.

This four step recipe makes eight chicken skewers and more than enough of the delicious dipping sauce. You can use any left over sauce as a dressing for a noodle salad (see notes below).

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Chicken Satay Recipe

Makes: 8 skewers
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Marinating Time: 1 hour to overnight
Cooking Time: 15 minutes

INGREDIENTS

For the chicken skewers:

  • 625 g chicken thigh fillets chopped into chunks
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp lemon grass paste
  • 1 tbsp curry powder
  • 2 tsp Thai red curry paste
  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • 1 tsp salt

For the peanut sauce:

  • 400 ml coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp Thai red curry paste
  • 180 g smooth peanut butter
  • 50 g caster sugar
  • 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp Japanese rice wine vinegar

METHOD

  1. Add the chicken to a large bowl. Add the garlic powder, lemongrass paste, curry powder, curry paste, sugar and salt, and mix well. Cover with cling film and leave to marinate in the fridge for one hour or overnight.
  2. In the meantime make the dipping sauce. Add the curry paste, peanut butter, sugar, soy sauce and vinegar to a small pan. Place on a medium low heat and stir well until soft and combined, approximately 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  3. Thread the chicken onto skewers, I use 20 cm metal kebab skewers by KitchenCraft.
  4. Cook the skewers on a medium high heat in the grill or on a non-stick pan until brown, around 7 minutes on each side. I use my Tefal Grill Pan.

NOTES

  • The skewers can be served as a starter or as a main meal with rice and a salad.
  • Any left over sauce can be thinned with water and served as a dressing for a Thai noodle salad (rice noodles, grated cucumber, carrot and mangetout, and sprigs of fresh mint and coriander).

Siopao (Filipino Sweet Steamed Buns)

Siopao has to be one of my ultimate favourite Filipino snacks. It is essentially the Filipino adaptation of the Chinese barbecue pork bun (“char siu bao”). It consists of a sweet bread-like dough filled with a saucy barbecue or hoisin-style meat. The bun is steamed in a Chinese bamboo steamer resulting in a light and fluffy white bun that is slightly glossy on the outside.

Siopao (pronounced “sio-pau“) is a popular Filipino street food. It is typically filled with pork, although there are other variations with minced chicken and mixed meats and salted duck egg as fillings. In my version I use shredded chicken. Siopao can be enjoyed pretty much any time of the day – from breakfast to a heavy snack to a light lunch. In the Philippines it is often requested as a snack by kids on their way home from school. My fussy child absolutely loves to eat siopao when she gets home from school.

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Siopao Recipe

Makes: 10 buns
Preparation Time: 1 hour
Leavening Time: 2 hours
Cooking Time: 1 hour

INGREDIENTS

For the buns:

  • 400 g plain flour
  • 70 g sugar
  • 7 g fast acting yeast
  • 0.5 tbsp baking powder
  • 160 ml milk lukewarm
  • 80 ml water lukewarm
  • 3 tbsp butter cubed and at room temperature

For the filling:

  • 625 g chicken diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 4 stalks spring onion white part finely chopped
  • 1.5 tsp five spice
  • 2 tbsp hoisin sauce
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 0.5 tsp ground black pepper
  • 120 ml water
  • corn flour slurry (2 tbsp corn flour mixed with 80 ml water)

Additional:

  • 1-2 tbsp cooking oil for oiling the bowl and the dough
  • cornflour for flouring your work surface
  • half a small cup of water for sealing the buns
  • 10 flattened out cupcake cases
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar (used during steaming)

METHOD

  1. Prepare the dough for the buns. In a large bowl add the flour, sugar, yeast and baking powder and mix well.
  2. Add the milk and water and use a wooden spoon to start to bring the ingredients together into a dough.
  3. Mix in the butter and knead the dough using a dough hook for around 6 minutes or manually for about 10 minutes.
  4. Remove the dough from the bowl, oil the bowl and then add the dough back to the bowl. Turn the dough over to ensure it is slightly oiled all over.
  5. Cover the bowl with clingfilm and cover with a clean tea towel. Leave the dough to rise for around 90 minutes.
  6. Next prepare the filling. Sautee the garlic and spring onions for 3 minutes. Add in the chicken, five spice, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, sugar, pepper and water. Simmer on a low-medium heat with the lid off until the sauce has reduced, around 15-20 minutes, mixing every 5 minutes to ensure that the sauce doesn’t dry out.
  7. Add the cornflour slurry and mix well until the sauce has thickened. Remove from the heat, use two forks to shred the meat, and then leave it to cool.
  8. Once the dough has risen divide it into 10 equal sized pieces. Use cornflour to flour your surface and roll each piece into a ball. Place the balls back in the bowl and cover with a damp clean tea towel.
  9. Working with one of the dough balls at a time roll the ball into a circle around 15 cm in diameter.
  10. Spoon some of the meat filling onto the centre of the dough circle. Dab your little finger into the water and moisten a 1 cm thick circle at the edge of the dough.
  11. Seal the bun by pulling opposite sides of the dough circle around the meat towards the centre of the circle and squeezing them together. I usually squeeze together eight opposing sides.
  12. You can then roll the bun in your hands slightly to even it out if needed. Place the bun seam side down on the cupcake case.
  13. Repeat steps 9 to 12 for each of the dough balls and until all the meat filling is used up. Place the buns on a large baking tray, cover loosely with cling film and then a tea towel and leave to leaven for a further 30 minutes.
  14. Next pour 1 litre of water and the tablespoon of vinegar into a deep frying pan or a saucepan and bring to a simmer on a medium heat. I use my favourite 28 cm Anolon Sauté Pan for this, click here for more details.
  15. Place the buns into a wooden steamer ensuring that there is 1-2 cm between each of the buns and the sides to allow them to expand as they cook. Steam the buns for 20 minutes. I use my BestCool Bamboo Steamer for this. It is a two tier steamer roughly 25 cm in diameter – one tier can comfortably hold two or three buns, so I steam the buns in two batches.
  16. Carefully remove the buns from the steamer and place them on a baking tray to cool for 5 minutes. Serve the buns while they are hot, remember to peel off the cupcake cases first.

NOTES

  • You can use either chicken breast or thigh fillets in this recipe. If you want a more even texture then use chicken breast as it is easier to shred. I personally prefer chicken thigh fillets as the meat is more succulent.
  • The vinegar is added to the steaming water to stop the buns from becoming overly yellow in colour as they are cooked.
  • These can be made as appetizers by dividing the dough and the filling by 20 to make smaller size buns. These are also more kid friendly.
  • Tip: To get even sized buns you can weigh the risen dough, divide the weight by 10 or 20 (or however many buns you wish to produce) and then make sure that each of the pieces of dough in step 8 are this weight. Similarly you can weigh out the filling too.

Easy Cajun Shrimp and Sausage Bake

This recipe is inspired by the flavours of an amazing seafood boil I had when I visited Seattle. It was such a fun eating experience (you know it’s going to be fun when you’re offered a plastic bib before the food has come out). The table was covered in paper (to soak up the mess) and an array of deliciously spiced seafood was placed in the middle. Knives and forks and other table etiquette were out the window for this meal as we dug into the shelled crab, lobster and shrimps with our hands.

Seafood boil consists of an array of shelled fish (typically lobster, crab and prawns), andouille sausage, corn and potatoes boiled in a seasoned broth and further flavoured with butter. This is a simple three step recipe that produces the authentic flavour of a seafood boil using prawns.


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Easy Cajun Shrimp and Sausage Recipe

Serves: 4
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 25 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 500 g raw king prawns shelled and deveined
  • 250 g smoked pork sausage
  • 500 g peeled potatoes cut into chunks
  • 2 cobs of corn (each one cut into eighths)
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 0.5 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 0.5 tsp black pepper
  • 0.5 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 0.5 tsp mustard powder
  • 0.25 tsp oregano
  • 0.25 tsp crushed pepper flakes
  • a pinch ground allspice (pimento)
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 3 tbsp butter melted

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 200 °C fan (220 °C conventional).
  2. Combine all the ingredients in a roasting tin and mix well.
  3. Cover with foil and bake for 25 minutes until the corn and potatoes are tender and the prawns are pink.

NOTES

  • For the sausage I used Matessons Original Smoked Pork sausage as I was unable to find andouille here in the UK.
  • To prepare the corn cut each cob into quarters and then cut each quarter in half along the cob.
  • Serve with salad and freshly baked baguette.

Crispy Garlic Prawns

This is a super simple recipe for Chinese style prawns in a sweet and tangy garlic sauce. It can be made in minutes – the prawns are first fried up in a light batter before being coated the garlic sauce. I normally make this with the intention of being main dish for dinner, but the prawns are so delicious that we keep dipping in for a taste and before we know it there’s not enough for a meal. So this may be better categorised as a starter.


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Crispy Garlic Prawns Recipe

Serves: 4
Preparation Time: 5-10 minutes
Cooking Time: 30 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 500 g raw peeled king prawns
  • 3 tsp cornflour
  • 2 tsp room temperature water
  • 2 tsp reduced salt soy sauce
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tsp sesame oil

for the sauce:

  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 5 tsp soy sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 0.5 tsp finely ground black pepper

METHOD

  1. Prepare the prawns by scoring along the outside of each prawn. This will cause the prawns to splay out when cooked and adds to the crispness.
  2. Mix the batter ingredients (cornflour, water, soy sauce, egg yolk and sesame oil) together and stir in the prawns.
  3. Shallow fry the prawns in vegetable oil on a high heat in a deep frying pan until they are pink. Do this in three to four batches. It should take the prawns around 4 minutes on each side to cook.
  4. Drain the prawns on a plate lined with two sheets of kitchen roll. Remove excess oil from the frying pan and wipe down.
  5. Mix the sauce ingredients (honey, vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, black pepper) together and add to the frying pan on a medium heat for around 2 minutes. Pour in the prawns and stir them through the sauce for a further 2 minutes.

NOTES

  • Serve with steamed basmati or jasmine rice, or over noodles.
  • If you’re a spice lover try adding a teaspoon of crushed dried chilli flakes to the sauce.
  • Toasted sesame seeds also make a perfect garnish for this dish.

Saltfish Fritters

Saltfish fritters are a popular snack across the Caribbean, but growing up in the UK I’ve been more accustomed to having them at West Indian parties. They consist of dried salted white fish (usually cod) mixed up in a batter with onion and spices. They are normally shallow fried until brown and crispy on the outside and slightly soft in the centre. The salted fish gives it a unique flavour and texture. Although they are common to many of the Caribbean islands they go by different names. In Jamaica they are known colloquially as “stamp and go”, and in Barbados they take the moniker “Bajan bakes“, whereas in Dominica they are called “accra”. It is thought that they originate as an adaptation of the Ghanaian black eyed peas fritters known as akara or accara. Whatever you call them I’m sure you’ll agree on how deliciously more-ish they are.


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Salfish Fritters Recipe

Makes: Around 20 fritters

Preparation Time: 12 hours

Cooking Time: 30 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 360 g dried saltfish
  • 130 g plain flour
  • 1/8 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp scotch bonnet pepper sauce
  • 0.5 tsp all purpose seasoning
  • 0.5 medium onion finely chopped
  • 1 spring onion stalk finely chopped
  • 120 ml water
  • 60 ml vegetable oil for shallow frying

METHOD

  1. Rinse the dried saltfish under the cold water tap and place in a large bowl. Fill the bowl to the top with cold water. Cover with clingfilm and leave to soak overnight.
  2. Drain water then place the fish in a pan, fill with cold water. On a high heat bring to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
  3. Drain the water and when cool break the fish into small chunks.
  4. In a large bowl mix together all the ingredients apart from the oil (saltfish, flour, thyme, pepper sauce, all purpose seasoning, onion, spring onion and water) to form a thick batter.
  5. Put the oil in a deep frying pan and heat over a medium heat.
  6. Use one tablespoon to scoop the batter from the bowl and another tablespoon to push the batter gently into the hot oil. Fry the fish fritters for around 5 minutes each side until golden brown.
  7. Drain well on kitchen roll before serving.

NOTES

  • Serve with a sweet chilli dipping sauce.

Oven Baked Crispy Chicken Wings

This is my slightly healthier version of fried chicken wings, ideal for when you fancy fried chicken but don’t want to go through the faff and mess that comes with frying (using and then having to find a way of discarding lots of oil, and oil splatters on your hob and splash back etc). These seasoned chicken wings are tender and juicy on the inside, but nice and crisp on the outside.


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Oven Baked Crispy Chicken Wings Recipe

Serves: 4
Preparation Time: 5 mins
Baking Time: 50 mins

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 kg chicken wings cut at joints
  • 40 g plain flour
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • 0.5 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 3 tbsp butter

METHOD

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 200 °C fan (or 220 °C conventional).
  2. Use kitchen roll to pat the chicken wings dry and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl combine the flour and all the dry seasonings (garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne powder, paprika, mustard powder, salt and pepper).
  4. Add the chicken wings to the seasoning and mix well.
  5. Add the butter to a roasting tin and put into the oven until the butter has melted (approximately 2-3 minutes).
  6. Remove the roasting tin from the oven and use tongs to carefully add the wings to the hot butter. Turn each wing in the butter to ensure it is coated well.
  7. Ensure the wings are evenly spread on the baking tray and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 25 mins.
  8. Turn the wings and cook for an additional 20 minutes.

NOTES

  • These wings are great as a starter and perfect as a finger food for parties.
  • Serve with barbecue sauce, buffalo sauce or sweet chilli dip.