Monday, January 10, 2011

Everyone's exhausted and we need dinner!

The kids are tired and so is mum, what can I make for dinner that’s easy and doesn’t involve going to the shops?

Some of my ingredients

This will feed a family of 5;
You’ll need the leftover crumbs from the freezer - about a cup’s worth,
8-10 rashes of bacon, fat trimmed and kept for later, and the bacon chopped up smallish ready for frying.

bacon bits 
½ cup of parsley chopped finely - I also used some chives, because they were in the fridge (but I never have before) 
3 cloves of garlic chopped finely or grated – I like lots of garlic because it’s so good for you and it wards off sickness, so I like to get it into my kids anyway I can. But you can always use less.

Garlic chopped with my Mother's Day present - bought from the mothers day gifts at school, I scored !

½ a packet of spaghetti + an little extra – I’m always afraid there wont be enough and I’m always wrong. Max thinks after making pasta for the last 12 years, I should know how much to make by now, but I don’t !

Michelle being very organised

A teaspoon of butter and olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Chilli sprinkled on top if you like – I like lots!
And good quality parmesan cheese to sprinkle over after you’ve dished up.
Oh and of course vegies for the kidlets. Because it’s been the Christmas break and everything’s been shut, I had to search for whatever was left in my fridge, so today they had- raw carrots, cucumber and red capsicum (about a cup full each).

Nigel Slaters Appettite

I’m stealing this recipe from Max. He has a repertoire of things that he cooks – when he’s allowed in the kitchen, and this is one he’s been doing for years . He found the recipe in one of my favourite cookbooks Nigel Slater Appettite.

Ok so these are my cookbooks, counted
yesterday by Jemima - 295!

I swore her to secrecy but she let the cat out of the bag.
And I have my eye on at least 10 others.

I have an obsession with cookbooks, actually that’s putting it mildly.
I’ve never actually followed a recipe from start to finish, which is a bit of a sore point in our house. Max can not understand why I need so many cookbooks if I never cook from them – point taken! Anyway he does follow recipes and very well I might add, and this is one the whole family likes – even Frank!
As Max is going out of town tomorrow I have been given the job of improvising on his perfection. So here goes. 

Maybe Wilco will be the chef in the family when he grow's up!

Ok so put your water on to boil for the pasta,
Chop up your bacon, set aside.
Put the rind of the bacon in your pan and let it render down, so there is the melted fat to fry your bacon bits.

Rind rendering

Take the rind out, put bacon in and fry till crispy on medium heat.


Once crispy add the chopped garlic and turn heat down to low and fry till the raw smell has gone 1 – 2 min and they smell amazing. Then put the bacon/garlic into a bowl and set aside.

Bacon and garlic only need a minute or two.

Now add the butter and oil to the pan and pour in the now defrosted bread crumbs and fry till golden, stirring constantly, be really careful or they will burn fast.

Butter in, dash of extra virgin oil 
Then the crumbs
Ready to turn off.

Add your pasta to the water and cook for the time stated on packet, I like my pasta al dente so I take it out a minute earlier. I also cook different pasta for the baby, a small shape – what ever you have, In the same water, before I cook the spagetti .

Crumbs, bacon and garlic ready to toss with pasta

Mix your bacon/garlic in your bread crumbs, season – then drain your pasta well and add this mixture to it along with the parsley and a good swig of olive oil.
Plate up and finish with cheese and chilli. 

Without chives

With chives

Wilco's with the works

Oh de Dod ! (which translated means Oh my god)
Wilco's words, not mine !
By the way I got a 10! Two in a row - YES !!!
all photo's taken by Michelle Schoeps
©Michelle Schoeps 2013

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