Thursday, 31 May 2012


As a kid i never could pronounce "stroganoff" right so we called it white sauce or white stew and from time to time my mum would say she was tired of tomato stew and we would get some stroganoff and eat it with absolutely everything; fries, boiled potato, rice, bread...

A few nights ago, i wasn't in a tomato stew mood so i made some stroganoff (we are our parents in more ways than we know).

I'm a fan of simple and this really is simple and oniony and tangy and creamy and delicious and...

750grms Sliced beef
1 Cup single cream
Mushrooms chopped up
1 Onion sliced
1 Spring onion sliced diagonally
1 Teaspoon tomato puree
1 Teaspoon mustard
1 Tablespoon flour
A dash of white wine vinegar
100grms butter
Sunflower oil
Salt and cracked black pepper

Season your beef and fry in a hot pan with 2 tablespoons of sunflower oil and half of you butter until its brown on all sides and tender.

Take the beef out of the pan and set aside. Toss in the remaining butter and fry up the onions and garlic until softens.

Now in no particular order add flour, mustard, tomato puree, white wine vinegar. It will mix into a thick paste, then you can start to loosen it up with the single cream. Add slowly, stirring all the time to eliminate any lumps that could come from the flour.

Add the beef back into the pan, together with mushrooms and spring onions. Taste for seasoning. Allow to cook on low heat for 3 - 5 minutes and serve your very own "white sauce".

Bon Apetit!


Sunday, 27 May 2012


My very first food post was aptly titled Asia & I, i love Asian food! It's easy, doesn't require a lot of ingredients and a lot of the sauces can be found bottled in the shops. Whats not to love?

I have tried a couple of recipes the long way, deciding to go all fresh but there isn't much of a difference and living in Nigeria, best of luck with finding fresh black beans etc. This recipe is out of a black bean sauce bottle but you can make it all yours by ignoring their suggested cooking accompaniments and jazzing it up for yourself.

500grms Sliced beef
Sliced green pepper
Diagonally sliced spring onions
3 Cloves of garlic crushed
1/2 Onion, chopped
1 Teaspoon grated ginger
Steak Seasoning
1 Bottle Black bean Sauce
2 Tablespoons Olive oil
1 Tablespoon light soy sauce
1 teaspoon vinegar

In a pan heat up olive oil  and fry onions and garlic until softened.

Add beef, steak seasoning and ginger and fry on medium heat until meat is completely cooked. 

Add black bean sauce, soy sauce, pepper, vinegar. Turn down the heat and allow to simmer for 3 minutes. Add your vegetables and cover to cook for another minute.

That's really it and its easy and high in protein! Serve with basmati rice.

Enjoy Shanghai in your kitchen!

Meat balls are really easy to make and versatile, you can eat em with almost anything; pasta, sauces, make a meatball sandwich with a baguette, thousand island dressing, tomatoes and lettuce or just much em on their own. 
I had mine with some pasta and fresh tomato sauce with grated parmesan cheese....mmmmmm....

750grm Minced meat
Chopped parsely
2 Cloves of garlic
1/2 Onion, chopped
1/2 Cup of seasoned breadcrumbs
1 Egg
1 Tablespoon bbq sauce
Steak seasoning
Salt and pepper
Oil for deep frying

In a big bowl mix your minced meat with salt, pepper and steak seasoning and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Bring out your meat and allow to sit for about 10 minutes then break in your egg and add all other ingredients. wash your hands properly and get in there and mush it all up until everything is properly mixed. 

Mould your meatballs into medium sized balls that would just about fill your palm when cupped. The egg and breadcrumbs will work to bind it all together so it doesn't fall apart when its being fried. Any bigger and you will have the outside of your meatball cooked with the inside remains raw.

Deep fry until the balls are evenly browned on all sides.


Put your meatballs on a slightly greased oven tray and pop into the oven for 15 minutes, roll over and let it cook for another 5 minutes and take out.

Balls, glorious meatballs.


Try out some of your meatball combos and let me know.


Thursday, 17 May 2012


I lived in Port Harcourt for many years and countless times i made the trip to the Creek Road market with my mum looking for the freshest seafood straight out of the water. Crabs are one of my guilty pleasures, i could spend an hour on one crab. Cracking the shell and digging for juicy goodness, hidden sauces and spices in the shells and crack...ok , i'll stop now. Here goes...

Shrimps and calamari (by now y'all must know i love these 2 a lot!)
1 Can of diced totatoes
Seafood seasoning
Olive oil
2 Cups of white wine
1/4 Cup of rice wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon tomato puree
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 an Onion
1 teaspoon Oregano
Green Pepper
Spring Onions
Salt and Pepper

Wash your crabs thoroughly, turn the crab over and with a sharp knife pry the shell off from around the claws. 

When the fleshy inside is exposed, give it another rinse to get rid of any residual sand and the guts of the crab. Don't toss the top of the shell away, when cooked with the stew some flavour comes out of it (believe it or not).

Make a marinade of salt, pepper, garlic, white wine vinegar, seafood seasoning and finely chopped parsley (after chopping the parsley u can squeeze and rub it between you fingers to get the oil and flavour out so that it infuses properly into the marinade). Pour over the inside of the crabs and pour your shrimps over it, cover with a few more sprinkles of seafood seasoning and pop into the fridge until needed. do not let it marinade for too long because the vinegar will start to break down your seafood causing it to over cook really quickly.

Rinse 3 or 4 basil leaves and either pound in a mortar or put in a blender with a little water and blend smooth and set aside.

Chop spring onions, green pepper and carrots roughly and set aside.

Chop half an onion, grate 3 cloves of garlic and a little finger size piece of ginger. Throw them all into a hot pan with 3 tablespoons of olive oil and fry until the onions soften. Add can of tomatoes, tomato puree, oregano, worcerstershire sauce and basil and allow to cook for about 10 minutes.

Add white wine, season and add crabs and remaining seafood. Cover and turn down the heat.

Allow to cook for another 10 minutes, add chopped vegetables and cook for another 2 - 3 minutes.

Take off the heat and serve on a bed of pasta or white rice, garnish with some more chopped parsley and parmesan cheese.

Enjoy! Food, crabby food!

Friday, 11 May 2012


I love quick and easy food, i also love a plate full of different flavours and textures. These have relatively short prep times and you can have them all served at the same time if you manage your time properly.

For Chicken Satay:
Skinless chicken breast
Wooden skewers
Garlic and ginger
Salt and pepper
Chicken seasoning
A dash of vinegar
A dash of white wine
Half a teaspoon of cinnamon
1 tablespoons of olive oil

Soak wooden skewers in bowl of cold water for about 10 minutes. This time allows it to soak up some water so it doesn't burn while grilling or dry up and start to absorb your chicken moisture. Also do not cut your chicken too thin so it doesn't dry out on the grill.

Cut chicken breast into slices of 1 cm diameter and starting from one end "sew" through the chicken with the skewer. Don't leave too much of the tip of the skewer out so that it doesn't rip your bag in the next step.

Mix all the ingredients together, pour into a freezer bag or ziploc bag and add chicken, rubbing gently so the chicken is completely covered. Refrigerate for an hour.

 Take your chicken out of the bag and transfer onto a plate. Put the remaining marinade in a bowl and pop into the microwave for 2 minutes, take it out and add remaining olive oil, this will be used to baste the chicken while it grills.

Heat up your grill (or a non-stick griddle or frying pan) and brush on a teaspoon of olive oil, brush one side of the chicken with the basting marinade and lay that side of your chicken on the grill. Let it cook for 5 minutes, baste the top of the chicken and flip that side on to the grill for 5 minutes and take off. And just like that, that bit is ready!

For Potato Wedges:
Potatoes - Peeled and quartered
Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
Garlic powder
2 teaspoon all seasoning
2 teaspoons paprika

Boil potatoes for about 10 minutes until soft but not properly cooked, drain and transfer into greased baking tray.

Mix all other ingredients except the paprika and brush over the potatoes till its completely covered. Sprinkle paprika over the potatoes and pop into a preheated oven for 10 minutes. Take it out, turn it all around gently and pop it back in for another 5 - 7 minutes and serve.

For Burger:
200grms minced meat
Chopped parsley
1 Egg
Salt and pepper
Garlic and ginger
Chopped mushrooms
1 Chopped onion
1 Teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
4 Burger buns
A knob of butter
Mustard, mayonnaise and ketchup
1 Tomato thinly sliced
Half a cucumber thinly sliced
4 Slices of cheddar cheese for the 4 burgers

Combine your minced meat, chopped parsley, egg, salt, pepper, garlic, ginger, mushrooms, onions, worcestershire sauce in a bowl and set aside for about 30 minutes.

Slice your bun in half and butter it and toast until brown on a grill, toaster or pan. Mix 1 teaspoon on ketchup, mayo and mustard and a pinch of cracked black pepper and rub a little over the toasted side of the buns and set aside.

Brush your grill or pan with a little olive oil, mould your burgers and place on the grill. Do not press the burger down or you will lose all of its juices, if you are using a grill, just place the top over it. Flip after 5 minutes on one side.

There is no particular order when building a burger but i do lettuce then cucumber, burger patty, (onions for onion lovers like me) cheese, tomato, lettuce and cover burger bun.

Happy customer...

Saturday, 5 May 2012


At the close of work yesterday i was on my way to a Chinese restaurant for some take out for dinner, half way there i changed my mind and headed home as i already had all the ingredients i needed in my fridge and i could whip it up in a little more than the time i would have to wait for it.

1 Cup basmati rice
1 Egg
250grm Boneless chicken breast
Seafood mix
1 Carrot
1 Green Pepper
1/2 Red bell pepper
1/2 Cup white wine
1/2 Teaspoon Oriental 5 Spice
1/2 Cup Chinese cooking wine
Olive oil
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
Sliced mushrooms
Spring onions
Garlic and ginger - peeled and grated
1 Teaspoon oriental 5 spice
1 Knorr cube
A pinch of curry
Salt and pepper

To get that single, non-sticky rice grain effect, cook your rice the night before and refrigerate or cook first, strain hot water and rinse the rice with cold water, drain completely, fluff up with a fork and pop in the fridge/freezer while you prep and cook the other parts of the meal. Basmati rice should not cook for more than 10 - 15 minutes.

With your rice literally chilling out in the fridge, chop or slice your vegetables and chicken as you please and set aside.

Get out your wok/pot/pan and add 1 tablespoon of oil and break in your egg and stir vigorously so it breaks up into pieces as it cooks. Transfer into a plate and set aside. Rinse out wok and set it back on the heat.

This time add the chicken and seafood for 3 minute their stir fry. Season with garlic, ginger, oriental 5 spice, a pinch of curry, salt, pepper and knorr. When the chicken is cooked on all sides and the shrimps are nice and pink, transfer on to another plate and set aside.

You need not wash your wok this time, just add a teaspoon of olive oil and add the veggies. Use then to wipe up every bit of spice left over from the chicken and seafood and set aside. Shouldn't be in the pan for more than a minute.

Now wash your wok for the last time, tedious i know. Add another 2 - 3 tablespoons of olive oil into the wok and allow to heat up. Get your rice out and add it to the pan, stirring gently so that the rice is properly coated and leave it for another 3 - 5 minutes. Add your white wine, Chinese cooking wine and soy sauce, mix properly and let it cook and absorb all the liquid for another 3 minutes.

Add chicken and seafood mix in first, mix. Eggs, mix more delicately, then veggies. Taste for seasoning.

Isn't that Chinese made easy???


I can eat yam any day of the week/time of the day. Boiled, fried, roasted, whichever way...

This recipe is a quick, no fuss simple yam pottage.

Dried fish
Fresh Shrimps
Palm oil
2 Knorr cubes
Palm oil
1 Medium Sized Chopped Onion
Washed & Cut Ugu leaves/Chopped Spinach
Salt and pepper

Peel, wash yam and cut into little cubes. Pour water over the yam to nearly cover it and set on high heat to cook.

In no particular order throw in your dried fish, crayfish, chopped onions, salt, pepper and knorr cubes and allow to cook for about 15 - 20 minutes, depending on the size of your pieces of yam. At this time your yam should be 80% cooked, add your shrimps.

Stir, breaking up some of the pieces as you do so and allow to cook for another 2 - 3 minutes. The pieces of yam that you broke off will act to begin to thicken it into a pottage.

Add palm oil as needed, stir and taste for seasoning (at this point i like to add some more chopped onions). The palm oil will need about 5 minutes to cook the add your chopped ugu/spinach.

Mix properly and take it off the heat and serve.

This is one of my rainy day comfort foods... Well, if i'm being totally honest i could eat it on any day in just about any weather.

Snuggle up and enjoy!


I'm not even gonna lie, i'm not crazy about bitter leaf soup! I guess because it is bitter and secondly in my mother's bid to make me become this culinary goddess she went a bit over board with the bitter leaf soup. I could understand why anyone would eat something with the word "bitter" in the name and even worse still, mummy dearest would buy it fresh on the stem and i would wash and wash and wash until all the bitter was out, then wash it some more. After all of this, i would be too upset to eat.

Well, mummy said to me a few years ago, "you're getting older and will find yourself in a man's house soon, you can't keep selecting food and saying you don't like this and that so cant or wont cook it". So in the spirit of that, i started attempting some of my forbidden foods (i don't mind okro right now, still on the fence on bitter leaf but don't know if anything can be done about oha and beans *shudders*).

This is my 2nd solo attempt, in my first attempt i thickened it with achi but didn't like it so this time i used cocoyam. After cooking this i invited my dearest Taster who flies the bitter leaf flag high and proud and she promised that the criticism would be harsh as this is her fave soup ever. I swallowed a lump in my throat and said it was fine. I only decided to put this up after she ate, turned to me and said "you really are becoming a well rounded cook, that wasn't half bad at all". 

My friends don't bullshit, i believe her so here goes...

Already washed bitter leaf
Dried Fish
2 small cocoyams
Palm oil
Salt and Pepper

Peel and cook cocoyam and set aside with some of the cooking water still in the pot.

Season your meat with salt, pepper and onions and cook together with fish until tender then add your dried fish and snail. Allow to cook for another 10 minutes the add ground crayfish and cover.

Add about 3 tablespoons of palm oil and a bit of water if the stock is too thick and cover for another 5 minutes.

Pound cocoyam in a mortar with some of the water used to boil it until you have a smooth paste. Incorporate this into your soup gradually, stirring all the time so it doesn't form a thick lump at the bottom of your pot, then turn down the heat.

Allow to cook for another 5 minutes and add a little water if its too thick and need some lightening up. Add your washed bitterleaf. Cook covered for another 2 minutes and take it off the heat and serve.