Maple syrup braised lamb rack

How's this for a dinner worthy of a Grand Final: forequarter rack of lamb braised in maple syrup, white wine, oregano, and orange peel. Served over braised red potatoes and onions topped with peas and squash. 

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Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 2 600g lamb forequarter racks
  • 500 g baby potatoes, halved
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 small brown onions, peeled and cut into thick rings
  • 3 large sprigs of fresh oregano
  • 2½ tbsp maple syrup
  • 250 ml white wine
  • 250 ml salt-reduced beef stock
  • 3 pieces of orange peel, 2cm wide
  • 100 g frozen peas
  • 6 yellow squash, quartered

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Bring a heavy-based casserole dish to a medium heat. Add 1 tbsp oil and brown lamb racks all over and set aside. Add another tbsp oil, then add potato halves, onion, and salt and cook until golden brown, about 8­-10 minutes. Place lamb racks on top of vegetables and add wine, stock and 2 tbsp maple syrup to deglaze pan, scraping the bottom of the pan. Add orange peel and oregano and cover with lid. Place into the oven for 2 hours.
  3. Change oven to grill setting, uncover lamb, add peas, and squash, brush lamb with remaining maple syrup and allow to crisp up for 20 minutes , serve immediately.

Essential tips

Try substituting honey instead of maple syrup!

Beef, spinach, and cashew Korma curry

The weather may be cool outside but bellies will be warm inside with this delicious Indian-inspired beef dish!

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Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 105 minutes
Serves: 4

Ingredients

  • 800 g oyster blade steaks, fat trimmed, cut into 2cm dice
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 red onions, cut into thin wedges
  • 1½ tbsp Korma Indian curry paste
  • 400 g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 300 g peeled pumpkin, cut into 2cm dice
  • 50 g cashew nuts, finely chopped
  • 1 bunch English spinach, trimmed, leaves shredded
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) natural yoghurt, plus extra to serve
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 cups steamed basmati rice and chopped coriander, to serve

Method

  1. Place beef in a bowl with 2 teaspoons of the oil and toss to coat. Heat a large flameproof casserole dish over a high heat. Add the beef, in batches, cook for 2 minutes or until browned. Remove and set aside.
  2. Return pan to a medium-high heat, add remaining oil and onion, cook stirring occasionally for 3 minutes or until golden. Add the curry paste, cook stirring for a further 1-2 minutes or until fragrant. Add the tomatoes and 375ml (11/2 cups) water, bring to the boil.
  3. Cover dish and transfer to preheated oven for 1 hour. Add pumpkin and cashew nuts to pan, return to oven for a further 30 minutes or until beef is very tender. Stir through the spinach, yoghurt, lime juice and sugar.
  4. Serve curry with steamed rice, garnished with coriander.

Essential tips

  • This curry is suitable to freeze, place in airtight containers, set aside to cool, then cover and freeze.
  • This curry can also be cooked on the stovetop. At the end of step 2, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer gently for 1 1/2 hours. Add pumpkin and cashews, remove lid and simmer for a further 45 minutes or until beef is very tender and sauce has thickened. Stir through spinach, yoghurt, lime and sugar.

Crackling pork belly with crimson grape and plum sauce

It's cold and wet outside right now... but nothing shakes the winter blues like pork belly. Enjoy!

Ingredients

1.5-1.8 kg pork belly, rind on
Oil
Sea salt
1 cup plum sauce
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar glaze
¼ cup caster sugar
¼ cup pomegranate juice
3/4 cup crimson grapes, halved

To serve
Steamed potatoes
Steamed asparagus spears
Steamed baby brussel sprouts
Steamed baby peas

Method

  • Preheat oven to 220°C.
  • Using a Stanley knife or scalpel, finely score the pork belly rind. Pat the surface of the rind dry with paper towel and rub with oil and flakes of sea salt. Allow to sit for 20 minutes.
  • Place the pork belly into a shallow baking dish.
  • Roast the pork belly in the preheated oven at 220°C for 30 minutes. This will begin the crackling process. Reduce the oven temperature to 160°C and continue to roast for a further 1 ½ hours. Remove the belly from the oven and allow to rest for 15 minutes.
  • To prepare the sauce, combine all ingredients in a small saucepan and stir over a medium heat. Simmer until liquid has reduced by half and is glossy.
  • Cut the pork belly into serving sized portions. Serve hot with steamed vegetables and crimson grape and plum sauce.

Tips

Sauce may be prepared well ahead of time and kept in an air tight jar in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.

(Image and recipe courtesy of Australian Pork)

Parmesan crumbed veal schnitzel

Serve these golden crumbed veal schnitzels with lemon wedges, a sprinkle of grated parmesan and a tablespoon of capers scattered over the veal adds a wonderful flavour too. 

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PREPARATION TIME: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 4 veal schnitzels
  • ½ cup plain flour
  • 2 cups dried breadcrumbs
  • 150 g grated Parmesan
  • 2 tbsp chopped parsley
  • grated rind of one lemon
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • oil for shallow frying
  • lemon wedges, salad leaves, halved cherry tomatoes and flaked Parmesan to serve

Method

  • Dust veal schnitzels in lightly seasoned flour shake off excess. Combine breadcrumbs, Parmesan, parsley and lemon rind.
  • Coat schnitzels in egg and dip in breadcrumbs, shake off excess. Place on a foil-lined tray, refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Add enough oil to a medium-sized, heavy based frypan to come halfway up the side of the pan. Heat the oil over a moderately high heat. Carefully lower schnitzels into hot oil. Cook schnitzels in batches on both sides until lightly golden. Drain schnitzels on absorbent paper after cooking. Allow the oil to reheat between batches.
  • Serve with lemon wedges and salad leaves with cherry tomatoes and flaked Parmesan.

Essential tips

  • Shallow-frying is the method used to cook crumbed or floured schnitzels and cutlets.
  • Oil is added to a heavy based pan, to the depth of about 1.5cm. (for a medium sized pan). Do not crowd the pan when shallow-frying as it will reduce the heat and the crumb coating will soak up the oil. Allow the oil to reheat between batches.

Osso bucco with basil pesto

As we move further into Autumn and the evenings get cooler, our thoughts turn to hearty and warming meals like this one - enjoy!

Ingredients

4 pieces osso bucco
1 tbsp olive oil
500 ml beef stock
1 onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
800 g cans butter beans, drained and rinsed
1 bouquet garni (see tip)
1 cup green beans, chopped

Basil Pesto
2 cup basil leaves
¼ cup pine nuts
1 clove garlic, chopped
¼ cup olive oil
40 g parmesan, finely grated

Method

  • Preheat oven to 180°C.
  • Pat osso bucco dry with paper towel, brush with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat a large cast iron pan with a lid over high heat and brown osso bucco on both sides.
  • Add stock, onion, carrot, butter beans and bouquet garni. Bring to the boil, cover meat with a piece of baking paper and then the lid and place in oven for 1½ hrs or until beef is very tender. Add green beans in the last 10 mins of cooking.
  • Place basil, pine nuts and garlic in a small food processor and process until finely chopped. Add olive oil and process until smooth. Stir through parmesan.
  • Divide vegetables and sauce between 4 bowls and top each with a piece of osso bucco and a dollop of pesto.

Essential Tips

  • Bouquet garni is a small parcel of herbs, usually bay leaf, lemon peel, thyme and rosemary. Substitute with your favourite herbs.
  • Substitute basil pesto with a store-bought version.

Barbecued rump steak wrap with corn salsa


Everyone will love these beef wraps! Change the salsa to suit, or try avocado in place of the corn kernels. 

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes

Ingredients

2 thick-cut beef rump steaks (about 250g each)
1 small avocado
1 tbsp mayonnaise
270 g can corn kernals, drained
1 small red capsicum, finely chopped
2 spring onions, finely chopped
snow pea sprouts and warmed flour tortillas to serve
 

Method

  1. Brush the steaks lightly with oil and season with a little sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Preheat the barbecue flat-plate to hot before adding the steaks.
  2. Cook the steaks on one side until the first sign of moisture appears. Turn steaks once only. Test the steaks for the degree of doneness with tongs. Rare is soft, medium feels springy and well done is very firm.
  3. Remove the steaks from the heat, cover loosely with foil and allow to rest for 2 to 4 minutes before serving. While the steaks are resting, mash the avacado with the mayonnaise. Combine the corn, capsicum and spring onions.
  4. Slice the steaks thinly and evenly accross the diagonal. Spread the warmed tortillas with mashed avacado and top with slices of steak, corn salsa and sprouts.

Essential tips

  • A great all rounder, rump steaks are good value. They're lean, full-flavoured and perfect for barbecuing.
  • Best beef cuts for barbecuing: fillet/tenderloin, rib eye/scotch fillet, sirloin/porterhouse/New York, T-bone, and rump.
  • Only buy steaks of an even thickness, not wedge shaped - this way they'll cook evenly.
  • Always heat the barbecue before you add the steak. The steak should sizzle as it makes contact with the heat.

Roast lamb rump with balsamic syrup

This is a simple recipe but with big results. Lamb rumps are cooked at moderately-high temperature, yet they remain moist and juicy. Balsamic vinegar and brown sugar are simmered until thick and syrupy to make a lovely sauce. 

Preparation Time: 15 minutes Cook Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • 4 lamb rumps (about 160g–180g each)

  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and cut

  • few sprigs fresh thyme leaves

  • creamy parsnip or potato mash, baby spinach leaves to serve

  • Balsamic syrup
    ½ cup balsamic vinegar
    ½ cup brown sugar


Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 220ºC. Rub the cut garlic cloves over the lamb rumps, brush
    the lamb with a little oil, sprinkle with thyme leaves and season with salt and pepper.
    Place the lamb rumps on a rack in a roasting dish. Roast for 15 minutes for rare, 20-25 minutes for medium, or 25-30 minutes for well done.
  2. Remove lamb, cover loosely, rest lamb for 10 minutes before serving. Slice the lamb rump and drizzle with the Balsamic syrup.
  3. To make Balsamic syrup: Combine the balsamic vinegar and brown sugar in a small pan, slowly bring to the boil, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes until thickened and syrupy.
  4. Serve lamb with a creamy parsnip or potato mash and fresh spinach leaves.

Essential Tips

  • Lamb rump is one of the muscles from the lamb leg. Depending on the size of leg it comes from lamb rumps can weigh from about 160g to 250g each. You may need to pre-order them from your butcher. They’re quick to cook and very flavoursome.
  • Replace lamb rump with lamb eye of shortloin/backstrap or lamb round. Cook at the same temperature and time as lamb rump.

Slow-cooked smoky pork ribs

How good does this sound?

Preparation Time 10 minutes
Cooking Time 1 1/2 hours
Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 4 x 4 pork rib racks
  • 400ml ginger beer
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup smoky BBQ sauce
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder

Cooking Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 160°C.
  • Combine all ingredients in a large jug and mix well.
  • Pour the marinade over the pork ribs and allow to marinate for as long as possible.
  • Place the ribs into the oven and cook for 1 ½ hours basting frequently until sauce is thick and gooey.
  • Serve ribs hot with a potato salad and crusty bread and a bowl of warm water for sticky fingers.

Note: ribs may be prepared in a slow cooker, however it may take a little more time and the sauce may need to be reduced for serving.

(Recipe and photo thanks to Australian Pork)