Foodstyle Magazine - Spring 2015

  Spring 2015- In this Issue Skewered lamb with hummus, Crayfish and onion cream piesThe hummus art sauceTwo delectable meat pies,  Welcome back iceberg 

Skewered lamb with hummus

Easy, light and tasty these lamb skewers are served with hummus and iceberg lettuce, both featured in this issue and a great combo meal for the warm months ahead.

The lamb


Prime lamb – such as Silver Fern Farms lamb medallions or loin packs are ideal. Pictured is the Silver Fern lamb loin, which comes in a packet of two loins. Cut into even pieces, each loin makes up two skewers, or one serving. Dab surplus moisture off the meat with a paper towel before cutting.



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Crayfish and onion cream pies

The base for this pie is a traditional 'soubise' sauce made from onions and cream. This is a very versatile, sweet white sauce that will serve you well for numerous dishes, such as charred vegetables, and chicken, bacon and mushrooms. This pie is also 'gourmet' in size; designed as a catering item to be held and eaten with one hand.

You can use any seafood. Our crayfish has been pre-cooked. If using rawn prawn meat, scallop meat or a nice fish – it might pay to poach the seafood lightly first so its 'water' is released. Otherwise, it may make the pastry bottom soggy. If you are making a large 'dish' pie, then don't bother with putting pastry bottom, which solves this problem.



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The hummus art

Hummus bi tahini (chickpeas with sesame paste) is something many can make, but few make it well.

The challenge is - any hummus recipe is only a guideline, because of the nature of chickpeas - bland. The basics are: Cooked chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, and garlic. It is wise to also add a little sesame oil, chilli, and season thoroughly with salt and white pepper. Any olive oil goes over the finished mixture as a garnish, not into the mixture.

It is impossible to provide extract measurements for these ingredients. The flavour will vary from one day to another; typically dependant on factors never quite understood in the food arts, suffice to say (as we like saying in this magazine) taste, taste, taste the mixture and add stuff and season (especially with salt) until you like it.


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Two delectable meat pies

All the work goes into the flavour of the fillings of these gourmet meat pies, as the filling is what makes a pie, not the pastry. These are also mini pies that are just the right size to be eaten in one hand (while the other holds a drink) and were originally designed as catering items.

Gourmet pies are about quality ingredients. Here we diced top quality meat – beef and venison. As for the pastry, buy puff pastry made of butter.

A pie also has to look good. Use a cutter to make two saucer shapes crimp the edges carefully. Glaze the tops with a traditional milk/egg wash.



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Welcome back iceberg 

After decades in exile iceberg lettuce has made a welcomed return in many eateries around the world, including the likes of Al Brown's Depot in Auckland.

When 'designer' lettuces hit the restaurant scene at the start of the 1980s, the thick, crunchy, iceberg lettuce that had been a staple through most of the 20th century was dumped as quick as you can say 'pink peppercorns'. Food fashion is a revolving door, and iceberg is back on the menu.

In the summer 2014-15 issue of Foodstyle magazine we covered Al Brown's iceberg lettuce wedge served with ranch dressing at Depot in Auckland's Casino precinct. It is also published on page 246 of his wonderful book 'Oyster Bar Depot Eatery' (a must for any Kiwi recipe library).



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