the secret to success...

Buy the freshest ingredients and wherever possible, purchase local, seasonal produce. Chop, assemble and stir with love!

hanuman oysters

Serves 6

Ingredients

2 stalks of coriander, roots attached
1 stalk of sweet basil, leaves removed, stems reserved
½ teaspoon finely grated galangal
2 tablespoons thinly sliced lemon grass, white part only
1 small red chilli, finely chopped
1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
60ml (¼ cup) lime juice
30ml fish sauce
2 tablespoons shaved palm sugar
36 Pacific oysters

Method
Cut roots and 5cm of stems from coriander and chop finely, reserving leaves. Finely chop basil stems. Process roots and stems, galangal, lemon grass, chilli, garlic, lime juice, fish sauce and palm sugar in a food processor until finely chopped. Check for the balance of sweet, sour, salty and hot and adjust if necessary. Store in an airtight container and refrigerate until needed. Makes ¾ cup and will keep refrigerated for up to 1 month.

Place oysters on an oven tray in a 200C oven or under a hot grill for 1 minute or until warm. Thinly slice basil leaves. Drizzle each oyster with ½ teaspoon of sauce, scatter with basil and coriander leaves and serve with remaining sauce passed separately.


chilli baked reef fish

Serves 6

Ingredients

600 grams whole fish, gilled and gutted
1/2 litre peanut oil
10 dried red chilli
40 grams red onions, chopped
40 grams fresh garlic
30 grams fresh lemongrass
2 tablespoons coriander roots, chopped fine
1 teaspoon kaffir lime peel
1/2 tablespoon galangal
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon Thai shrimp paste
1 1/2 tablespoons white palm sugar
7 tablespoons coconut cream 3 kaffir lime leaves, sliced thinly

Method

Cut the dried chillies into 1 inch lengths and boil in a little water for 15 minutes.

Drain and blend together with the onions, garlic, lemon grass, coriander roots, kaffir lime peel and galangal to form a paste.

Heat the oil in a wok and fry the fish first on one side for about 2 minutes and then the other for another 2 minutes.

Remove fish and place on paper towel to absorb excess oil.

Spoon most of the oil out of the wok leaving approximately 1/4 cup and continue to fry the blended ingredients for about 15 minutes.

Next add the fish sauce, salt, shrimp paste and the palm sugar.

When the mixture starts to boil add the 6 tablespoons of coconut cream and bring to the boil.

Remove from the heat and spoon over fish.

Bake in pre heated oven for approx 10 minutes.

Remove from oven and spread the last spoon of coconut cream over the fish.

Finally sprinkle the thinly sliced kaffir lime leaves over before serving.


ginger flower fish

Ingredients

Paste
300g red onion, sliced
20g fresh galangal sliced
40g fresh lemongrass, finely sliced
60g garlic
20g candlenuts
95g ground dried chilli paste
2 tsp belachan (shrimp paste)
1 tbs turmeric
50mls vegetable oil

Broth
4 pink ginger flowers, remove stalks and slice flowers in half (Frozen ginger flowers can be substituted, available from Asian groceries)
6 kaffir lime leaves
125g sugar
20g salt
100mls tamarind juice
900mls water
6 okra, diagonally sliced
8 cherry tomatoes, halved
400g wild barramundi fillets, or any other deep sea fish

Method:
Blend first 8 ingredients to form a fine paste.

In a heavy based pan, heat the vegetable oil and fry the paste until fragrant (approx. 3 -4 minutes).

Add the ginger flowers, kaffir lime leaves and seasonings to the paste, pour in the water and simmer for 15 minutes.

Increase heat, add the sliced okra, cherry tomatoes and fish fillets and cook for a further 3 – 4 minutes.

Remove from heat, pour gently into serving dish, remove the ginger flowers (keeping some leaves for decoration) and serve immediately.


crab with lime and green chilli

Serves 6

Ingredients

1 large live crab
6 pieces of Thai betel leaves

Dressing
2 pieces of fresh coriander root
1 piece of fresh garlic
1/2 of a thumb-sized piece of fresh galangal
30 gm of palm sugar
50 ml of fish sauce
1 piece of fresh long green chilli
1 piece of green bird's eye chilli
150 ml of lime juice

Garnish:
2 pieces of spring onion, sliced thinly 2 inches long
1/4 of a red capsicum, thinly sliced

Method:

To cook place the live crab in freezer for 10 minutes.

Remove from freezer and into a large pot of slightly salted water add the crab.

Lower the flame and simmer for 20 minutes.

Remove crab and let cool down.

Meanwhile combine all the dressing ingredients and blend until fine.

Remove meat from the crab and place into a large mixing bowl; add dressing, sliced spring onions and red capsicum.

Arrange the betel leaves on individual plates and spoon the dressed crab over into equal portions.

Garnish with coriander leaves and serve immediately.


oriental pork spare ribs

Serves 6

Ingredients

500 gr pork spare ribs (trim off fat and skin), cut into 3 cm strips
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon five spice (good quality)
3/4 tablespoon dark thick soy sauce
50 milliliters hoisin sauce
1/4 cup sweet sherry

Method

Trim the pork ribs, wash and drain. Into a large bowl mix all the ingredients and stir until the sugar has dissolved.

Coat the ribs with the marinade and refrigerate for 10 hrs.

Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Arrange ribs on a rack placed over a baking dish containing water.

Place in oven and turn over after 50 mins and cook for a further 30-40 mins.

Slice and serve with Japanese pickles

Japanese Pickles

Ingredients

2 bunches red radishes
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup water

Method

Trim radishes off stem, wash and drain

Slice thinly, toss in one teaspoon salt and leave it for 15 minutes

Rinse salted radish with water, drain and set aside

Dissolve sugar in water and vinegar, add the radish and refrigerate for 3 hours. Ready to serve.


south indian red lentils

Serves: 12

Ingredients

500 g / 17 1/2 oz red lentils
4 cups water
1 can coconut cream/milk
1 t turmeric
6 cm / 2 1/4 inches cinnamon
4 pieces whole dried red chillies
1 tsp salt
3/4 medium red onion, diced
3 sprigs curry leaves
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp cumin seeds, lightly crushed
2 tsp brown mustard seeds
1- 1/2 tsp chilli powder
2 tsp vegetable oil

Method

Wash lentils in plenty of water and drain.

Into a large saucepan add the lentils, water, coconut milk, cinnamon, turmeric, dried chillies and cook over medium heat. Lower flame when it starts to boil and cook for another 15 - 20 minutes stirring every now and then until the lentils are cooked/soft like rice. Add salt and remove from stove.

Into another saucepan heat the oil. Saute the onions and curry leaves for approximately 3 minutes. Next add the garlic and saute for another 4 minutes and when the onions turn brown add the mustard seeds. When the mustard seeds start to pop, remove from fire and add the crushed cumin and chilli powder. Pour this mixture over the cooked lentils and stir till uniform.

Serve immediately with roti, chapati or fresh crusty bread.