As Long as we Beat the English we Don’t Care

It wasn’t that long ago that the British peoples were spilling each others blood on the battlefield and even though we now coexist under one united banner, (blame the Act of Union) not a great deal has changed . These days Twickenham, Croke Park, Murrayfield and The Millenium Stadium are our battlefields where lines are drawn and blood frequently spilt. But as serious as a rugby union international is, there is nothing but humorous banter between supporters.

It’s a Baked Bean Pizza But Not as we Know it

If there is a more heinous crime than serving short measures (of beer), it has to be chucking fruit on a bloody pizza.

What a tart!

Pineapple is a prime example of when culinary creativity meets Mr. Stupid Bollocks. Coming in a close second with ways to totally bastardize an otherwise perfectly good pizza, is the desire to load it with meat. But just to clarify, it’s not simply the addition of meat, it’s the apparent need to stack so much of it on. You may as well rip the horns off a cow, shove your ball of dough up its backside and call that a pizza.

Other than ham or perhaps pepperoni, I don’t understand why anyone would saddle the humble pizza with lumps of assorted animal flesh. Don’t get me wrong, I love a steak as much as the next carnivore but the humble pizza is, in my humble opinion, simply not the place for it, it never was and there’s probably a rule about it somewhere.

One exception to the rule however, should be using minted lamb sausage meat with baked beans! Please, control your retching and hear me out.

Not really my pizza!

Do yourselves a favour and buy a shit-load of minted-lamb sausages from the butcher in Strath Village. His web site is bloody awful but his snags are great. Treat yourself to bangers and mash one night but save one or two sausages for the pizza.

Chop and gently fry a small red onion in a little butter and a teaspoon of honey. Squeeze the meat out of the skins and add to the pan, making sure it’s well broken down. I use a potato masher for this. Add ground or crushed black pepper if you are so inclined.

Chuck in 1/3 tin of baked beans and mix together. There’s no need to cook the beans, we’re just making sure everything is well mixed.

Spread your tomato sauce thinly over your dough. You can skip this stage if you like, especially if your meat and beans mixture is quite wet.

Spread your sausage meat and baked bean topping evenly over your pizza base, top with mozzarella and a good pinch of mixed herbs and wack it in the oven until it starts to brown.

I kid ye not, it’s delicious but very, very rich. I only managed a small slice but the great thing is that I can have another slice for lunch and another for supper! There may even be some left over for breakfast!

 

9th Feb is International Pizza Day!

Believe it or not, and I prefer to believe, tomorrow (February 9th) is International Pizza Day!

Have a look at my simple pizza dough recipe or my first ever effort in the shape of Australia!

I’m sure that many would upchuck at the thought of baked bean pizza but take my word for it, it is awesome. The boffins over at Heinz were obviously on to something when they came up with the frozen one.

heinz baked bean pizza
Mmmm…Heinz Baked Bean Pizza

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There is even a Facebook page dedicated to ‘Bring Back Heinz Baked Bean Pizzas‘!!

These days my kids go wild for my own homemade version. It’s not complicated and any baked beans will do. Spread over your tomato sauce or just tomato paste if you prefer, and top with cheese. The bulk of the cheese is simply cheddar of one sort or another but you can finish it off with a little mozzarella if you like. Sprinkle some mixed herbs over if you like and voila!

So if it’s not baked bean pizza, what’s your favourite?

[poll id=”2“]

 

 

 

 

Chicken Fettuccine with Wild Mushrooms and Gobbledegeek

To give this scrumptious Italian number it’s full name….Peppered Chicken Fettuccine Tossed with Sun-dried Tomatoes, Wild Mushrooms & Spinach. It may very well be known by another name but I’m afraid I have no have no idea what it might be. The original recipe was passed to me by a talented young chef in Bendigo named Adam and so the credit, and thanks, go to him.

You will notice, perhaps with some panic, that I have omitted the proportions. The reason for this is that after making it a few times, I discarded the recipe and made it to taste. For instance, I love mushrooms but the kids balk at their texture and so the amount and the variety will vary. We all adore pesto but it can make the dish a little rich and heavy, so if you have plenty of chicken to go around, cut down on the pesto and vice versa. Experiment by adding and tasting as you go. Add more of what you like and less of what you don’t but don’t go mad otherwise it will become too salty or overly rich.

Referring back to the long-winded title, if you are partial to it, you might like to add more pepper and reduce the amount of pesto. Heck! Leave out the pesto, sun-dried tomatoes and substitute cream and you have yourself a completely different meal!

 

Ingredients

Fettuccine or Tagliatelle
Chicken Breast Fillets
Sun-dried Tomatoes
Mushrooms
Spinach
Pesto
Cracked black pepper
Garlic
Butter
Olive Oil
Parmesan Cheese

 

Method

Start by cooking the pasta in well salted water. This should take between 8 and 10 minutes once the water is boiling, just long enough to let you prepare the rest of the dish.

Slice the chicken into equal pieces and marinate in olive oil and black pepper while you get on with the other stuff.

Slice the mushrooms and cook in an equal butter oil mix. Season and add a little garlic. Personally, I prefer to just heat them through so they remain quite firm but not still crunchy. You can experiment with wild mushrooms and I would suggest Crimini (Cremini, baby bellas, Italian Brown and Portabellini) for their richer, more earthy flavour or for the more adventurous (and if you can get them), Pied de Mouton or Porcini (Penny Buns) but any mushroom imparting earthy or nutty flavours such as Portabello, would be great in this dish. If you manage to get your hands on some good ‘uns, reduce the impact of the other ingredients and make it more about the mushrooms.

cremini mushrooms

Fry the chicken in olive oil, add mushrooms and the sun-dried tomatoes. Add the pesto and garlic. Season to taste. Other than the pasta, the chicken is the only other ingredient you actually cook, everything else simply requires warming through!

Add more olive oil for the sauce. You may leave this step out if you’re not a fan of olive oil but you don’t want it to be too dry.

Drain and add the cooked pasta, toss and add shaved Parmesan. Potato peelers are great for shaving but a standard grater will probably have the necessary grating slot.

Add the spinach, toss and add a knob of butter. If you’re not a big fan of spinach, try it anyway because it’s the marriage of flavours that make this dish so bloody lovely. If you really must, leave out the spinach, it won’t lessen the dish noticeably. You might also like to add lightly toasted pine nuts or even almond slivers.

Serve with shaved Parmesan on top and accompany with a chilly crisp white of your choice.

Perhaps I’ll add a few black olives when I do this next and I must remember to take photos. Here’s one I borrowed but it doesn’t have sun-dried tomatoes, mushrooms, spinach, Parmesan or any chicken for that matter!!

pesto fettucini

Gobbledegeek v The Bendigo BMX Bandits

An unnatural noise outside caught my attention where random wind-related sounds don’t. Given that the missus is working away in Melbourne, I couldn’t wake her to deal with it and so I had little choice but to drag myself out of bed. A sneaky peak out between the blinds revealed some low-life miscreant creeping up the driveway.

Being ever so courageous, I poked my head out of the front door and politely greeted the bugger! Yes, I actually called out “hello?” My God! What was I thinking? I immediately came to my senses and attempted to rescue the awkward (for me at least) situation with some choice expletives but the little sod was obviously so confused and startled by my effeminate (particularly blonde) initial greeting, that he had long since scarpered.

God I Hate Bloody Ironing

With wife and newborn baby due to return within 24 hours, I notice with feelings of horror and loathing, the mountain of ironing with my name on it. I am reasonably sure that once I get started, it won’t be so bad but finding the motivation is proving to be a deal breaker.

In March 1923, in an interview with The New York Times, the British mountaineer George Leigh Mallory was asked why he wanted to climb Mount Everest, and replied, ‘Because it’s there’. The answer became famous, not least because Mallory himself was lost on Everest in the following year. It was sometimes suggested that he and his fellow-climber Andrew Irvine, who were last seen ‘going strong for the summit’, might in fact have reached it before their deaths, but there was no proof.

6 Nations Rugby 2010

Well bugger me if Setanta aren’t airing the IRB 6 Nations Championship this season! That subscription can consider itself well and truly canceled. Fortunately, ESPN is showing the Northern Hemisphere’s premier rugby showcase. Unfortunately, one is required to buy a new HD set-top box and subscribe to the new HD channels which will set you back another $20 a month. Looks like the kid’s Cartoon Network has been canceled…..at least for next couple of months.

Bendigo Paedophile Dennis Goudge Buggered

Or more to the point, the filthy nonce will be when he’s convicted and sent to play with the big boys. He’s going to need rope for his soap, that’s for sure!

Dennis Alfred Goudge, who Bendigo Police describe as Victoria’s worst child sex offender, faces 58 charges (revised from 144), including multiple counts of child rape, sexual penetration of a child under 10, sexual penetration of a child under 17 and indecent assault.

Bendigo Hoons Are Special…

…in the head!

A Maiden Gully uber-hoon makes a late claim for “Cockhead of the Year Award’ by dobbing himself in. I know what you’re thinking, that these imbeciles surely can’t get any more moronic, but if this article from The Advertiser is to be believed, then the 26 year old subject has surely set the standard. No wonder Bendigo Police carted him off to hospital for an assessment!

The Googlers Guide to Gobbledegeek 2.0

Without a doubt, the most frequently used search string in 2009 was any variation of ‘Nude photos of Julia Gillard’ for Christ’s sake (original post). I still cannot fathom why anyone would be searching for nude photos of the Welsh red-headed politician (no offence J). The runner up is the very steady performer that is any variation of ‘simple pizza recipe’. The one-eyed, almost but not quite, entirely unlike, quasi-serial killer ‘Barry Rochford’ is behind bars in third (original post). For those in search of ‘telstra customer service’, let’s face it, it’s an oxymoron (like ‘happily married’ or low calorie ‘chocolate covered bacon’). You’re not going to find it. It’s like Shangri-bloody-la!