Thursday 25 March 2021

Fish Curry With Salmon And Coconut Cream

I'm trying to do a Marie Kondo, and get rid of stuff.  I have a massive TBR pile of books, and I came across this one called Our Delicious Adventure by Jane Grover.  I bought it several years ago, but have only ever flipped it open briefly.  Now I've discovered a few recipes to try out (so the next bacon post will have to wait).  Jane made her fish curry with bream that her hubby had caught on their travels, but I had to settle for fish caught in the local deli section of the supermarket :-)

Speaking of salmon, I have fond memories of visiting a salmon ladder in Scotland (where the salmon head back to spawn), and of eating the best smoked salmon - ever!!  I'm also reminded of the time Mr P.'s little sis decided to bake a massive whole salmon (stuffed with banana, pineapple and pumpkin - I kid you not) in our tiny gas oven.  I think she had to do a tail-ectomy on it to fit it in the oven.  It tasted as funky as you are imagining right now.  

ready to eat

I was dubious about this curry, to be honest.  It seems like a very old-fashioned way of making it, with a flour-thickened sauce, but it was delicious!  Smooth and creamy and comforting.  I made a few changes along the way;  reduced the amount of celery, increased the curry flavouring, and added chilli and coriander = Yum!  

Serves 4-6:


2-3 carrots, chopped into chunks

3 large potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped

2 tbs vegetable oil (I used EV olive oil 'cos we love it)

1 large red or brown onion, finely chopped

2-3 celery sticks, finely chopped

3 spring onions/shallots, roughly chopped

3 healthy tbs Thai yellow curry paste (or 1 tbs curry powder if you follow Jane's instructions)

1/4 cup (40g.) plain flour (or gluten-free cornflour)

3 cups (750 mL) vegetable or fish stock (gluten-free if need be)

500g./1 lb salmon, cut into chunks

270 mL/8-9 oz can of coconut cream

sea salt, to taste

ground black pepper, to taste

1 tsp gochugaru (Korean chilli flakes) or your fave chilli powder -(optional)

basmati or brown rice, to serve

cashews and fresh coriander leaves/cilantro, to serve (optional)


Throw the carrot chunks into a steamer/saucepan and cook till tender, then drain and put aside

Put the potato chunks in the same steamer/pot and cook till tender; also drain and put aside OR put the potato in with the carrot a few minutes after, as it takes less time to cook than carrots.  Does that make sense?  I mean you can cook them in the same pot, but the carrot goes first, then the potatoes

Grab a large frypan or saucepan, heat the oil, tip in the onion, celery and spring onions, and sauté on a low-ish heat for about fifteen minutes till really fragrant and tender - (meanwhile, heat the stock in a saucepan so it's ready to go when the veg is cooked)

Add the curry paste or powder to your sautéed veg, and stir for a minute or two

Then add the flour, stir it in, and cook it out for a couple of minutes

Now ladle in the hot stock a spoonful at a time, stirring in well, till you have a beautiful, thick sauce

Now add the carrot, potato, fish, coconut cream, salt, pepper, and chilli flakes

Let it simmer gently away (covered) for about ten minutes or till the fish is cooked to your liking

Serve with rice, cashews and chopped coriander


Call 'em what you will: spring onions, shallots, green shallots, scallions - they are long, with a green top and a white bottom - you know what I mean

Choose whatever fish you like - using salmon is extravagant, (and so delicious), but use ling, or basa, or barramundi, or snapper, or whatever your fave dense, boneless fish may be

Don't stress about the amount of coconut cream; one ounce more or less won't hurt.  I'm assuming it's more likely to come in an 8 oz tin in the US or UK

Mr P. felt the potato and carrot should have been added in with the onion, celery and spring onions so it absorbed more of the curry flavour - not a bad idea!

ingredients (partly) gathered

a few more ingredients

cut the fish into chunks

sauté the veg.

stir in the curry paste and then the flour

stirring in the stock

sauce thickened, fish and veg and coconut cream added

and eat ... 

© Sherry's Pickings

Wednesday 17 March 2021

Bourbon And Maple-Bacon Ice Cream

Hello again from bacon world.  Nah, just kidding.  But I am surrounded by bacon recipes at the moment.  You'll be seeing another bacon recipe (from a different cookbook) here soon.  You'll think I'm crazy, but as I've said before, I eat ham (sometimes) and I eat bacon, but I can't bear to eat pork.  Yep, totally mad!  And as I often say, it's all to do with cannibalism.  ????? I can hear you thinking.  

Now hear me out...  You know that cannibals (if there ever really were such a beast) called human flesh 'long pig', as it apparently looked like pig aka pork.  The same colour, the same texture, the same dense, pink flesh.  So every time I see a bit of pork, I see my sister's arm.  Whaaaaaat? Yep, 'cos when I was a kid, I bit a chunk out of her upper arm.  I can still see the toothmarks...

creamy, sweet, bacon-y ice cream

Niamh's recipe is for a proper French custard-type ice cream but I took the easy way out and made a condensed milk version.  Still delicious, and soooo easy!  I had the bright idea of adding the chopped nuts to an already fabulous idea :-)  Maple syrup, bacon and bourbon - winner, winner, chicken dinner!

(Linking up with Marg at The Intrepid Reader for Weekend Cooking.)

Makes just over 1 Litre/1 Quart:


600mL/20 oz thickened cream

1 can (395g./14oz) condensed milk

2 tsp vanilla extract

60mL bourbon (or liquor of your choice)

100g./3.5oz toasted pecans or walnuts, roughly chopped - you want big chunks

pinch of sea salt flakes

150g./5.5oz maple-candied bacon, blitzed in a food processor till you have fine pieces


Pour the cream into a large mixing bowl, and whip till soft peaks form

Gradually add the condensed milk, beating all the while

Add the vanilla and bourbon, and give it a quick whizz with the beaters

Take a large spoon, and stir in the nuts, sea salt and bacon pieces/dust

Now grab a monstrous piece of cling wrap or freezer film, line a large baking dish, making sure there is plenty of overhang so you can swaddle that ice cream like a baby!  Pour the mixture into the dish, spread it out evenly, cover with the wrap, and place in the freezer for several hours or overnight.  (I used my enamel baking dish which is  about 25cm x 30cm (approx 10 in x 12 in).

The next day, scoop out the mixture into a container with a lid, and whack it back into the freezer.  You can store it for a week, but I bet you eat it first!


Toast your nuts on a baking tray till golden and fragrant (or buy ready toasted)

I asked Mr P. to chop the bacon finely for me; he gave up after a bit, as it was like chopping toffee!  I strongly suggest chucking it into a food processor and blitz, baby, blitz!  You want it quite fine

ingredients gathered

get Mr P. to blitz the bacon

beat the cream, condensed milk, vanilla and bourbon together

stir in the bacon, nuts and salt

pour it into the lined tray

wrap it up, and whack into the freezer

scoop it out

eat some

freeze some

© Sherry M.

Wednesday 10 March 2021

Maple-Candied Bacon

Well, I promised you some bacon recipes from Niamh (Knee-uv) Shields' book Bacon The Cookbook, and here she be, my hearties.  The first cab off the rank; all the bacon and maple syrup flavour you could ask for.  Niamh uses this candied bacon in quite a few of her recipes, so I decided to post this recipe separately so it's easy to find on the blog.

This is a wonderful book, full of colour and fun, and really interesting recipes.  There are lovely, colourful drawings and photos, which are a pleasure to the eye.  Niamh has filled it with sweet and savoury dishes, and even tells you how to cure bacon yourself.  Eek, not sure I'll go there.  I think that's a pig too far for me :-)  (And she has researched the curing process and use of nitrites, which makes for interesting reading.)

sticky, sweet, savoury, bacon-y bacon


about 300g./10.5oz of smoked streaky bacon

100 mL/3.5oz of good quality maple syrup (not maple-flavoured)


Put the bacon slices in a large mixing bowl, pour over the maple syrup and massage the two together till well and truly married

Put aside for an hour, covered and in the fridge

Turn your oven to 180C/350F, then while it's warming up, place the bacon slices onto two baking paper-lined oven trays

Pour any lingering syrup over the bacon

Bake for ten minutes, take out the trays and turn the slices over

Bake for another ten minutes - you want to see sticky strands of syrup hanging off the slices - and if you don't, shove 'em back into the oven for a few minutes till you do (mine took about thirty mins. but I have a veeery slow oven)

Let them cool right down, as they will be hot hot hot!

You can store them in clingwrap or baking paper in an airtight container in the fridge for a few days


I suggest getting your bacon from the deli section, rather than in a packet.  It will (hopefully) be fresher, and better quality.  Niamh suggests using 12 slices of bacon, but when I measured mine, they ranged from 30 grams to 50 grams, so go by weight rather than the number of slices

massage the bacon and maple syrup together well

lay the bacon on the trays after marinating for an hour

see the beautifully sticky threads?
mm just one tiny burnt bit - but still delicious

Our longtime friend Kara, formerly known as Karin, aka Karen, always said she could never be a vegetarian because of bacon!  I think I have to agree.  There is just nothing like bacon, my friends.  My cousin gave me some coconut faux bacon for Christmas.  Oh dear!  Hubby and I were vegos for a decade, and as many a lapsed vego has said: 'It was the bacon that drew me back'.  Niamh knew exactly what she was doing with this book!

© Sherry M.

Monday 1 March 2021

In My Kitchen - March 2021

March already?  Gulp! And time for another IMK.  Autumn is almost upon us (yay!); we've had a hot and humid summer though hardly any rain or storms or cyclones.  So much for La Niña!  As I sit looking out my (pythonless) study window, it is intensely blue and sunny, and hot.  Winter ... please hurry.

I'm still trying to find my mojo this year; I'm finding it tough going, as many people are.  I feel kinda flat much of the time, even though I still cook a lot, and write a bit, and eat too much.  Oh dear, my waistline, friends, is just going berserk.  Enough of that; please join us for another IMK, all you brilliant, global bloggers.  You know the drill; we want to see what's been happening in your kitchen over the last month.

In My Kitchen:

grilled veg. cooked up by Mr P. for dinner

a gorgeous little ceramic bowl by Starr, a local artist

various oils from a Victorian olive farm

finally!  the Bacon Book is here

Niamh is an Irish blogger (Eat Like A Girl), writer and traveller who started up a Kickstarter for this maybe two to three years ago.  I actually pre-paid it eighteen months ago, but due to Covid etc, it has only just arrived on my doorstep.  Mr P. kept saying it was a scam, and I would never get the book!  But Yippee, here it is!  And it's fabulous.  You're going to be seeing some marvellous recipes from it, to be sure, to be sure ...  Maple candied bacon, bacon ice cream and so on.

local tracklements (what a wonderful word)

a pretty little bowl in Ink tones by Batch Ceramics

Once upon a time, there was a young, blonde Aussie actress called Joy Smithers.  She could be seen in local soapies, dramas etc.  And then one day, she decided to forge a new path, and become a ceramicist.  Hence she now has a ceramics business called Batch Ceramics.  I love her work, and I've already bought a few of her pieces.  (Painting by Catherine Reason Macauley showing in the background.)  

a gift from my Melbourne cuz

another spoon!  Oh yes!

This is made from Tasmanian (reclaimed) blackwood; it's milk painted and hand carved.  I love it!

Come on everybody!  Join in for another IMK post.  Here's the reminder again: IMK posts are about your kitchen (and maybe garden) happenings over the past month.  Dishes you've cooked, or preserves you've made, or herbs and veg in your garden, kitchen gadgets, and goings-on.  You get the picture:-)  And one curveball!  Throw in whatever you fancy.  And here's mine:

L'il Dusty

L'il Dusty is a small, bronze figurine made by Dion Parker, a Gold Coast artist.  I also have one of these in blue resin, and a couple of his other pieces.  Oh, I've just noticed you can see my reflection in L'il Dusty's face :-)

Please join us here for In My Kitchen.  All welcome.  I'd appreciate a mention on your post about this linky.  Thanks muchly!

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In My Kitchen:

Not Quite Nigella

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