recipe

Sitar’s butter chicken

While this isn’t mums and certainly made for our Aussie tastes it is still the best Butter Chicken in Brisbane. 

Sitar originally a one off restaurant in Albion is now a mini franchise in Brisbane. Fortunately it seems that the butter chicken recipe is part of the franchise because it’s been consistently good at 3 locations.

I am copying it to the cookbook in fear that Sitar might one day decide to remove it from their site! 

Ingredients :

1 whole chicken 

2 tomatoes puree in a blender

2 onions, chopped 

1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste 

15 cashew nuts paste 

1 ½ tbsp butter 

3 tbsp cream 

1 tsp chilli powder 

Oil for frying 

salt to taste 


For the marinade :

1 tbsp tandoori masala 
½ tbsp garam masala (cloves, cinnamon and cardamom powdered) 

2 tbsp lime juice 

½ tsp jeera 

5 tbsp yoghurt

Directions

Marinate the chicken in the marinade for 1 whole hour. Heat oil in a non-stick pan and fry the chicken for 10 minutes. 

Remove the chicken and keep aside. In the remaining oil fry add the chopped onions till golden , then add the ginger-garlic paste and fry sprinkling little water now and then, till the oil separates. 

Add the cashew paste, chilli powder, tomato paste and cook for 10 mins. 

Add the butter and the cream and the chicken. Mix well and cook till done. Garnish with coriander.

Visit www.sitar.com.au

Goat’s cheese and hazelnut souffle

This is a really delicious recipe of Philip Johnson’s. It is also the one on which I came to grief one night when the mixture ‘split’ just as I was about to add the egg whites. The flour I should have been using was baker’s flour, or strong flour, which has a higher gluten (protein) content than the plain flour available on supermarket shelves. It is also the flour that many professional cooks use as a matter of course, so that when they say ‘plain flour’, they really mean baker’s flour.   

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
½ cup polenta
50g unsalted butter
50g strong or baker’s flour
300ml cream
300ml milk
4 sprigs thyme, leaves chopped
Pinch nutmeg, freshly grated
Salt and freshly ground pepper
4 egg yolks
225g mature goat’s cheese, melted
6 egg whites
Pinch of cream of tartar (unless using a copper bowl for egg whites)
½ cup (50g) hazelnuts, roasted and finely chopped

Preheat oven to 220C, on static, not fan-forced setting.  Brush six 180ml capacity ceramic soufflé dishes with the melted butter and coat with polenta, shaking out the excess.

Melt the 50g butter in a heavy-based pan over moderate heat, then stir in flour. Cook and stir until mixture begins to leave the sides of the pan, then remove from heat. Gradually whisk in cream, then milk until smooth.

Bring mixture to the boil, stirring constantly. Cook for a further 5 minutes stirring occasionally.  Remove from heat and season with thyme, nutmeg, salt and black pepper to taste.

Whisk egg whites with a pinch of cream of tartar, unless you are using a copper bowl, in which case, omit the cream of tartar. Whites should be able to hold a peak without sagging. Using a metal spoon, fold one cup of the whites into soufflé mixture to loosen it, then fold in the remainder.

Divide mixture among soufflé dishes and scatter the tops with hazelnuts. Place dishes on an oven tray and bake until souffles are well risen and golden, about 15 – 20 minutes.

Serve immediately with a green salad. The pear and walnut salad included with the Goat’s Cheese Tart recipe in this section would be perfect.

Red duck curry made from barbeque duck

We usually make red curry of duck with the meat of a barbecued duck purchased from Chinatown after the duck has been relieved of its skin for duck pancakes. There is no reason why you should not use a duck you have cooked yourself, and there is no reason why the skin shouldn’t go into the curry! That said, the spices added to a Chinatown duck do give it an extra dimension – and of course it is so much easier!

This is a Thai curry and Thai curries don’t normally have vegetables in them. However somehow onion wedges seem to have crept into ours and they do give the curry a nice crunch.

For the sweet element, we use either lychees in syrup or John West mandarin segments in syrup. Both work well.

1 onion, peeled and cut into thin wedges
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 x 400ml can coconut cream
1 x 400ml can coconut milk
1½ tablespoons Thai red curry paste
Meat (and skin, optional) from 1 Chinese roast duck, cut into bite size pieces
1 tablespoon fish sauce (or to taste)
1 can lychees in syrup, or 1 can mandarins in syrup
A few kaffir lime leaves
1 tablespoon coriander, roots, stems and leaves finely chopped

Heat the vegetable oil in a wok and cook the onion wedges until transparent but still crunchy. Remove from wok and set aside. Tip excess oil from the wok.

Tip the coconut cream into the wok and cook until it cracks. (Cook until the oil separates from the cream.) Add the red curry paste and cook for about 1 minute, then gradually add the coconut milk. Bring slowly to the boil.

Drain the lychees or mandarins but don’t discard the liquid.

Add the reserved onion wedges, the duck meat, the lychees or mandarins (but not the syrup), the fish sauce, kaffir lime leaves and coriander.

Test for balance of flavours. If not salty enough, add more fish sauce. If not sweet enough, add a little of the syrup from the fruit.

Serve with jasmine rice.