Sunday, October 09, 2011


Leon was complaining that he hadn't caught up with my brother and SIL for a while, so we invited them around for dinner. As always when we get together it was a fun night with lots of eating, drinking and laughter.

The wine selected was from South Australia (Adelaide Hills)  - It was a Taylors Pinot Noir was a smooth light red, much in the French Burgundy style and we all agreed that it was an excellent partner to the fish due to the chilli. A white wine may have been better but there were no complaints. The Taylors Cabernet Sauvignon will be tasted with Sunday night's dinner maybe.
I decided to make a main I saw in a magazine I had just bought. Called Delicious, I get it each month as there is always something in it I want to cook. Plus it's Australian so the produce featured suits our seasons. The recipe was from a chef called Ben O'Donoghue.

As if she doesn't have enough cook books and magazines - Oh well, I guess I have to bare the consequences all this experimental cooking!!!!
 I bought Hapuka which is the NZ name for Grouper. A firm, thick, white fish. The marinade was yoghurt, lemon juice and rind, mint and chilli. After a short time in the marinade, it is wrapped in thin slices of zucchini and placed on parchment paper with another healthy dollop of the yoghurt marinade. Wrapped up tight and oven cooked for about 15 minutes. I tried it because it sounded interesting and unlike anything I had cooked before.

Preparation of the fish wrapped in Zucchini slices.

It was the best fish I've ever cooked and will definitely be a regular on the menu. It was moist, citrusy and had a definite hit of chilli (I used the dried flakes), although not enough to distract from the sweetness of the fish. We all really enjoyed it. With the fish we had green beans with roasted cherry tomatoes and chat potatoes rolled in butter and parsley.

Boy, did these go quickly - make these again PLEASE!!!!!!

As a starter I made three types of crostini. A garlic white bean puree with sweet chilli roasted tomatoes, broad bean puree with slices of fried chorizo, and ajvar (which is a roasted red pepper puree) with feta cheese. All very nice, but the white bean was a standout. Who doesn't love lemony garlicy tomatoey sweet chilli stuff? They were all done on slices of sourdough baguette which had been toasted, then rubbed with garlic and drizzled with extra virgin olive oil.

Sue asked, "Are you getting sick of Panna Cotta yet"
I don't think so, not the way she does it.

Dessert was an orange and vanilla scented panna cotta with raspberry coulis and tiny crunchy wafer biscuits.
Followed with a delicious, Leon-made coffee and Leon-washed dishes who could complain? (Not me, specially about the last bit.)

Happy guests for dinner - John and Jan.
Wednesday's in France this week takes us out of the Loire to Normandy - see you then.


  1. Sounds absolutely delicious Sue - interesting touch with the fish wrapped in zucchini slices - which would have helped to keep it nice and moist!
    I have never made panna cotto but vanilla and orange flavoured would have been - tres decadent!
    What a fabulous meal - Well done!

  2. Yumm! Another great meal by Sue.

  3. Hmmmmm and you did not ask us!! :) We often get good Australian or South African wine in France at Lidl at €1,99 a bottle. That Panna Cotta sounds good, how about giving us your recipe or you can always email it to me. Not enjoying the UK - the end of October can not come fast enough for me :)))) Diane

  4. Dianne - It's Sue's passion and my pleasure.

    Nadege - I'll let Sue know.

    Diane - I'll make my mission to ask Sue to send her recipe on email.


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