Author Topic: A Hardman Creation.  (Read 813 times)

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Offline McClean

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A Hardman Creation.
« on: March 02, 2008, 01:49:54 PM »
I split this off from a post in the old cooking thread. I have NFI what to call it and so, I'll let Chris name it, if he wants.

Originally posted by Hardman. June 27, 2007

We had a guest last night who is a seafood lover, so I schemed this up.

Two large onions roughly chopped, five cloves of garlic, sliced, butter, olive oil, a good shake of dill, oregano and basil, generous grind of cracked black pepper, dash of brandy.

Put everything but the onions and garlic in a heavy bottomed pan and get the butter melted and just foaming. Add the onion and garlic, saute until transparent.

Add four quartered romano tomatoes, a small tub of tomato paste and a cup of water, let cook until tomatoes are falling apart.

take two large fillets of nile perch (don't ask me why they are called that, they came from Tasmania) cut into cubes, add to pan, cover and cook, stirring occasionally. Keep the heat so it just simmers, adjust sauce thickness by removing lid to thicken or adding a small amount of water to thin. Lastly toss in some sliced mushrooms, about a handful and let them cook through. It's done when the fish is shredding asnd the mushrooms tender.

Meanwhile get a large pan of water boiling.

This is for pasta.

Three tricks to good pasta, add generous salt to the water, put in a good splash of olive oil and let it come to a rolling boil. The salt raises the boiling point, the oil keeps the pasta from sticking and adds flavour.

Now add your pasta , a full packet, I used spirals but whatever takes your fancy, and stir with a wooden spoon until the water boils again, cover, adjust heat to keep it boiling but not boiling over.

The last trick:

Let it boil no more than 4 minutes before you test, you want it el dente, cooked but still firm, nothing worse than overcooked pasta, as soon as you are happy chuck in a cup of cold water to stop the cooking and take it off the heat.

Strain, rinse under very hot water and you can serve if you want, pasta on plate, fish sauce on top.

I wanted the pasta a bit more interesting so I returned the drained spirals to the pan, added a cup of cream and a pack of cooked cocktail prawns, more cracked black pepper, and brought it back to heat until the cream was just simmering, stirring constantly.

If you like a thicker more clinging sauce then a half tablespoon of cornflower beaten with a tablespoon of the cream can be added gradually through the reheat until the consistency is what you like.

(A variation on this is to substitute sliced mushrooms for the prawns, pre-cook them in butter and add towards the end.)

What you end up with is rather more interesting pasta, almost a meal in itself, and a delicious southern Italian style fish sauce that is robust and full of seafood flavour.

The two go great together, and it can be a good idea to have some fresh bread around for mopping up, no one wants to waste the sauce :-)

It's an Australian variation of a common southern Italian dish that can be made anywhere with just about any fish you can get your hands on.

When your seafood loving guest consumes a big plateful and goes back for seconds you know you got it right :-)


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