This is a simple Nasi Goreng recipe I learned at a cooking class on my last trip to Bali.
The reason why I like it so much? Because it tastes really authentic, while a simplified version of the more complex recipes I have seen before. This means that you don’t have to get too many new spices and exotic ingredients to re-create it a home. In fact, this recipe is best improvised to use up overnight rice!
2-3 tsp vegetable oil
100g chicken, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 tbsp red chilli, finely chopped
2 spring onions, finely chopped
1 cup steamed rice, cold
3 tbsp soy sauce
1tsp Worcester sauce
1 tbsp ketchup
1tsp fish sauce
Salt & pepper to taste
Small handful of coriander, chopped
2 tbsp Fried shallots
½ cup Chinese cabbage, shredded (optional)
2 eggs, lightly beaten (optional)
1. If you’re not using left over rice, start by cooking the rice following packet instruction. Drain, cool to room temperature and place in the fridge for an hour or so. Note that it’s important to use cold cooked rice as freshly cooked rice is too soft and will absorb the oil.
2. Heat the oil in a wok over high heat. Fry the chicken for 2-3 minutes or until nice and brown. Season with salt & pepper.
3. Add the shallots, garlic and toss around for a couple of minutes. Add the chili, turmeric, and spring onion and fry for another minute.
4. Add the rice, mix and toss well. Add the Soy sauce, Worcester, ketchup and fish sauce. Season to taste.
5. Garnish with fried shallots and fresh coriander.
I didn’t include shredded cabbage or eggs omelette in mine, as I was serving it as a side to my chicken sate, but definitely add it in for a more substantial stand alone dish!
Growing up in France, cordon bleu was my all time favourite and it was pretty easy to satisfy my obsession as you could buy pretty good ones from the frozen section of most supermarkets. As I left France, I started making my own one from scratch, which proved to be a really good move!
Ingredients: (serve 4)
4 large chicken breasts
4 large slices leg ham, freshly cut
4 slices Emmental, Gruyere or Swiss cheese
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup flour
1 cup bread crumbs
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1. Unfold the first chicken breast and flatten it by pounding with a meat mallet or rolling pin. The trick is not to pound to hard, but to pound firmly and evenly until it’s a somewhat uniform flatness and similar shape and size to your ham slices. Repeat with the other breasts.
2. Season each breast with salt & pepper and place a slice of ham and then cheese on top.
3. Cut any sticking out part to ensure the 3 layers all have the same shape and size and fold neatly.
Coat each cordon in the flour, beaten egg and bread crumbs.
4. Pre-heat a large non stick pan on medium heat, add a splash of olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the cordon bleus and cook for 5 minutes on each side or until nicely golden. Season with salt & pepper.
Serve it hot with a side of salad or Petit Pois a la Francaise! You could also make a few extras and freeze it for an easy dinner during the week!
Zucchini flowers stuffed with goat cheese are so delicious and easy to prepare, but can also look quite fancy as a gourmet starter! I personally prefer the batter to be super light using just sparkling water and a bit of flour but you can also make a traditional batter by adding an egg in the mix for a crispier result.
Ingredients: (4 people)
8 zucchini flowers
120g fresh goat cheese
80g Ricotta cheese
1/2 bunch of chives, finely chopped
1 handful flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
1/2 nutmeg, grated
Freshly ground pepper & salt
100g plain flour
200ml sparkling mineral water, very cold
30ml vegetable oil (for frying)
1. Gently open the zucchini flower, remove the stamen and make sure there are no insects inside.
2. Combine the goat cheese, ricotta, chives, parsley, nutmeg in a mixing bowl and season with salt & pepper. If you don’t have a piping bag, cut the corner from a plastic freezer bag, add the cheese mix to the bag.
3. Squeeze the mixture through the whole into the flowers, set aside and refrigerate for 30 minutes to avoid the mixture to leak straightaway as you start frying.
4. Prepare the batter by whisking the cold sparkling water in the flour. Don’t worry if it’s not perfectly smooth when combined.
5. Pre-heat the vegetable oil in a large non stick frying pan. Dip the flowers in the batter and fry on high heat for 30- 60 seconds on each side until golden in color. Remove with the wire strainer, let drain, transfer to a plate lined with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
I like serve to it on a bed of green leaf salad topped with caramelised figs! It also works really well with a few pieces of crispy shredded Parma ham on top!
1. Let’s start with the potatoes…Bring a pan of salted water to the boil, add the cubed potatoes and cook on medium heat for 8-10 minutes or until just tender. Drain and leave to dry out in the colander.
2. Get started on the sauce while the potatoes finish boiling. Pre-heat a large non-stick frying pan over a medium heat with 1 tbsp olive oil. Add the chopped onion & 4 cloves of garlic and fry for 1 minute. Add the chili, carrot and thyme leaves continue to cook for about 5 minutes.
3.Add the tinned tomatoes, vinegar, salt and pepper and let it simmer for 10 mins or until the sauce is thick. Once it’s ready, let it cool down and blend it until smooth. Taste and add more salt and pepper if necessary.
- Heat the oil in a large non stick frying pan and cook for 15 min, steering occasionally. Add the onion, garlic, chorizo and thyme and cook until it’s all nicely brown and cooked. Sprinkle with paprika, salt and pepper. Place in the oven to keep it warm.
- In the meantime get the eggs ready – fried or poached as you prefer it. I also like to serve it with hash-browns. You may think that’s over doing it a bit? I think it’s just a way to make it extra special – potato 2 ways!
- Serve the potato mixture on the plates, with the egg, a few bits of parma harm and the hash-brown on top!