Tag Archives: bacon

My Broccoli Salad with Bacon, Roast Chicken and a Punchy Dressing

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My Broccoli Salad with Bacon, Roast Chicken and a Punchy Dressing 

For many, January must bring the usual self proclaimed promises of dieting and exercising. I am one of those people. Every year as I roll of the train armed with my post Christmas and New Year gut I make promises to eat healthy and be fit…every year I break this promise. Much like a season for my beloved Middlesbrough FC, my diet starts of very promisingly with carefully prepared salads, soups and steamed vegetables, only for it all to end with a disappointing mid-table finish as I start to reach for the Gregg’s sausage rolls, After Eights and Jaffa Cakes.

 So far 2011, has been a good year for the diet. I have already managed to lose ½ stone and maintain a fairly healthy diet plan. My secret has been variety and I don’t mean spicing up breakfast with a different cereal from the Kellogg’s cereals mini multi pack, even though frosties mixed with coco-pops and honey nut loops bloody rocks! I have been mixing up breakfast with various mueslis, yoghurts and fruits; smaller portions at lunch and the same at supper but with more greens. 

Tonight I cooked a broccoli salad from Jamie’s America cookbook; it’s in the bit where he goes to stay with the cowboys. I just added some rotisserie chicken meat (no skin) to give it a bit more substance. The dressing was unbelievable, so simple yet very subtle and pronounced in taste. The salad was delicious, crunchy and refreshing; the perfect incentive to remain on the diet.

 Serves 3 or 6 as a side 

You will need: 

Salad: 

1 Large head of broccoli

8 Rashers of smoked streaky bacon (fried to a crisp and finely chopped) (set the cooked bacon fat aside)

the meat from ½ a rotisserie chicken, stripped and roughly chopped

Olive oil

3 tomatoes (deseeded and finely sliced)

a small bunch of chives (finely chopped) 

Dressing: 

1 clove of garlic (finely chopped)

2 tsps Dijon mustard

5 tbsps Virgin olive oil

1 tbsps of the cooked bacon fat

2 tbsps White wine vinegar

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper 

  1. Fry off the bacon and set aside, finely chop it once it is cooled
  2. Put all the dressing ingredients into something like a clean old jam jar, give it a good shake and set aside
  3. Using your hands or a small knife cut or tear all the broccoli florets of their stalks into smaller ones. Cut off and throw away the thick dry bits of the base then finely slice and chop up the remaining stalks. Make sure they look nice and well presented.
  4. Bring to the boil a large pot of salted water.
  5. Once boiling, blanche the broccoli  for 60 seconds, drain and spread out on a clean tea towel to dry
  6. Whilst this is drying; finely chop your chives and tomatoes
  7. Once the broccoli is dry, mix all the salad ingredients in a big bowl, taste your salad dressing (add some more salt, pepper or vinegar if needed), pour on top of salad, mix a bit more and serve!
  8. Goes nice with a brewsky or a smooth white wine.

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Leftover Fried Rice

 

 

This was meant to be a weekend of cocktails, cooking, eating, frolicking and being rejected by every unattached girl in the SW6 postcode. But, alas, it was not. My housemate and I have been struck down with the dreaded man flu and are still suffering from its affliction. We have done naught but watch TV, use the Playstation 3 to kill bad guys online and watch Megan Fox in Transformers 2. 

One thing that had not been hampered was our hunger. Considering none of us wanted to leave the house and would rather stay indoors in our sky sports, duvet cover, Lemsip induced cocoons our weekend was catered by our local Chinese takeaway – Oriental Express – and cooking with what we had left in our adequately stocked cupboards, fridge and freezer. Before you think I stayed in all weekend, I did muster the energy to head down to the local market for a shop and a walk…It started to rain, I had forgotten my umbrella and returned home sodden, defeated and even more miserable. 

Fried rice was one of the first dishes my mother taught me, this is my effort using what was found in the kitchen plus a few supplies from the North End Road. 

Leftovers Fried Rice 

Serves 3  

You will need:  

300g of cooked rice 

100 – 150 g of frozen peas 

8 rashers of cooked streaky bacon (the crispier the better) (roughly chopped) 

100 – 150g of cooked chicken (roughly chopped) 

3 spring onions (roughly chopped) 

3 – 4 pieces of garlic (finely chopped) 

3cm of ginger (finely chopped) 

3 chillies (halved vertically down the middle and chopped into matchstick size pieces) 

3 eggs (beaten) 

½ a teaspoon of five spice powder (optional) 

Groundnut oil 

Sesame oil 

Soy sauce 

  1. Mix the five spice powder into the beaten eggs.
  2. Heat a couple of teaspoons of groundnut oil in a wok on a medium heat.
  3. Once the oil is heated make an omelette from the beaten eggs.
  4. Once cooked, remove the omelette, let it cool, chop into little strips and put to one side.
  5. Add a little bit more oil into the wok (2 teaspoons worth).
  6. Fry the garlic and ginger (make sure not to burn).
  7. After about 30 seconds add bacon, chillies and chicken.
  8. After a couple minutes of stirring, add the peas and spring onions.
  9. Stir for a further minute, possibly turning up the heat a little.
  10. Add the rice and about three or four splashes of sesame oil.
  11. Stir and mix all the ingredients in the wok.
  12. Add the egg strips.
  13. Add soy sauce (as much as you like but about four teaspoons should be enough).
  14. Sir for another minute or so making sure all the ingredients are mixed.
  15. Plate up and enjoy!

Make sure you are constantly stirring everything you put into the wok to ensure nothing gets burnt and everything gets cooked.

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