Red Wine Risotto with Beef & Bok Choy

I made this meal tonight. It’s the first heavily savoury risotto i’ve made, and a bloody ripper, even if i do say so myself.

– Good quality fillet steak (i used rib eye, something nice and juicy preferably)
– Carnaroli rice – higher starch content than arborio rice means creamier risotto.
– Red wine (mine was the 2002 Riverbank Estate Cabernets, my nana bought it for my birthday… what a great nana :) )
– Tomatos (both real and pureed)
– Quality beef stock
– Bok Choy (this is for a change in texture from the rest of the risotto to add some bite)
– Rosemary
– Risotto stuff ( ive made a lot of risotto lately, so i seem to be repeating the same ingredients and steps, basically this means, chopped onion, garlic, and leek, combined in either butter or olive oil, used to coat the rice before adding stock)

So basically you cook it like you’d cook any risotto, except that before you cook the rice, you cut the beef into strips (or chunks should you so desire) and braise it in a combination of red wine, rosemary, garlic and a little beef stock. Then set it aside just as its medium rare.

Continue with the rest of the risotto, creating the base stock out of beef stock, red wine, and rosemary.

When your rice is ready to go, begin adding the stock, stirring when you need to, and towards the end add in the chopped and pureed tomatoes (as many as you like depending on how ‘tomatoey’ you want it). Then when the rice is almost done, add your beef back in, stir it through, and then add the bok choy and let it soften slighty before serving.

What you get is big juicy pieces of steak combined beautifully with succulent and crisp bok choy and tender carnaroli rice.

And yes, my photography skills are not improving… but fortunately my cooking skills are… so whilst it looks kinda ugly, it tasted really good …

Milk Frothing Guide

Having recently purchased a beautiful Rancilio Silvia espresso machine, I’ve started getting into espresso in a big way.

One of the biggest things i’m trying to master is the art of milk frothing, and how to create latte art.

For anyone else wanting to get into this pursuit, i will say look no further than the CoffeeGeek milk frothing guide.

It’s an excellent resource that covers the main points of steaming and frothing milk, as well as a bit of the science of milk, and what chemical reactions are involved in getting that velvety smooth microfoam that makes espresso taste so good.

It also covers how to use various grades of espresso machines (basic home machines to full commerical machines) in order to get the desired result.

Now if only i can put some of it into practice.

You can see the results of some of my efforts here.

Kipfler Potatoes

Kipfler Potatoes (by Abstract Gourmet)

Apparently people have been coming to my page looking for ‘Kifler’ potatoes. Well i had inadvertently spelt ‘Kipfler’ wrong in an earlier post, and so i thought i’d best correct the matter, as well as give those hardcore kipfler fans out there the real deal.

Kipfler (or German Finger Potato) are a waxy potato, finger shaped with creamy-coloured flesh. They are great boiled, steamed and in potato salads and look awesome for presentation purposes.

They just scream out to be sliced in funky angular type patterns, and i always feel a little guilty chopping them into chunks to boil them up. You can find my other uses of Kipfler potatoes by clicking the recipes catgerory in the menu.

If you’re one of the people who’s been looking for Kipfler potatoes and got here somehow, please let me know by leaving a comment.

Check out the related posts below to see recipes i’ve made that use Kipfler potatoes.

Ciao Italia

Ciao Italia is one of Perth worst kept secrets. It’s an vibrant lively little restuarant in South Perth, where almost every day of the week you will find a queue of people outside waiting to get in.

Being fortunate enough to know the pizza chef (and most of the staff) doesn’t even help…there’s just too many people wanting to get in, and no space to put them all !

Half the time’s i’ve been there i’ve been put on the end of someone elses table, just because they need every seat they can get.

That might almost sound like a bad thing, but the atmosphere in the place is just buzzing the whole night. It’s like everyone is invited to some big Italian family dinner… which is really nice.

The one thing that knowing the pizza chef does help with is that whenever i order a pizza it’s freakin huge. The calzone shown above is bigger than my head… Not that that is a really good thing to compare it against, nor an accurate indication of big it really is… but its goood :)

If you live in Perth, and want a down to earth, friendly dining experience, with big hearty (tasty!) Italian food…then Ciao Italia is the place to go.

Ciao Italia
273 Mill Point Rd
South Perth
Tel: 9368 5500 (but they don’t take bookings ! )


Flickr Rockr’s

This is a test post from flickr, a fancy photo sharing thing.

Flickr is the coolest thing ever, and is making my life much easier by letting me upload all my photos to it, and then send the ones i like the best over to my blog…

This makes it a much simpler task to add new posts etc, because i’ve got all the little elements right there in the one place.

If only they weren’t owned by Yahoo… Ah well…

Atlantic Salmon w/ Warm Tomato & Avocado Salad

Well ok, its not really a salad.

Basically you cut the tomatoes up, crush a few cloves of garlic and roughly chop some fresh basil. Then mix all three together with lashings of olive oil, sea salt, and ground black pepper. Then oven bake or fry until the tomatoes are just soft, and infused with oily/herby goodness.

Then slice some avocado, and try and arrange it all nicely on a place with the tomatoes in the middle.

Voila !

At least it tastes better than it looks…

The salmon was seared for a short time in a hot pan and then transferred into the oven to bake for another 10 minutes.

It was lovely and medium rare all the way through the middle.

mmmmm :)

Red Wine Braised Venison

I bought some venison recently, and decided i’d have a go at cooking it…

The dish consisted of two small venison fillets, braised in a red wine, beef stock, butter, and leek mixture… Cooked until just medium rare.

It was served over a peccorino (sheeps cheese similar in texture to parmesan) and cream mash, and had some rosemary buttered peas and carrots thrown in for some form of nutritional balance.

The peas were fresh organic peas I bought from the cityfarm fruit and vege markets.

I think the venison was still a little tough… but other than that it was all quite tasty.

The wine was a delicious fruity NZ Pinot Noir from Central Otago… Rippon Estate… sublime.