Saturday, January 22, 2011

Comfort Food + Chocolate Raspberry Mousse

Friend and colleague L recently emerged from major surgery, now to be faced with weeks of bed rest and boredom.  I can offer little more than some comfort food, which hopefully helps to alleviate the pain a tiny bit.

Some good "healing" foods for L (my opinion only!):
  • Chorizo and chickpea stew:  includes cinnamon, and I also included fresh ginger and garlic for their healing properties.  Chickpeas for protein and all-round goodness, chorizo because L loves it.
  • Steamed white rice:  seems to be a cure-all in asian cultures, is reasonably easy to digest and what isn't comforting about a steaming bowl of rice?
  • Roast apricot chicken:  made with my mother in law's homemade apricot jam, from apricots grown on the family orchard by my father in law.  I roasted chicken thighs (bone in) in a casserole dish - spread with a jar of apricot jam, and a cup of chicken stock, salt and pepper for about an hour (first 40mins foil on, remaining 20mins foil off).  
  • Lup cheong sausages: aside from the fact that L loves them; they are handy to have in the cupboard, have a long shelf life, and can be chopped and added to almost anything (or eaten shamelessly on their own).
  • Chicken and pistachio korma, made from scratch: for Christmas, L gave me a book of recipes from last year's Australian Materchef contestant, Poh.  In it, there's a very simple recipe for chicken korma - I challenge anyone to get it wrong!  The only change I made was to up the spice levels.  Chilli also has healing properties, does it not?  Also contains lots of ginger and garlic.
  • The grand finale:  Chocolate Raspberry Mousse, my own recipe, whipped out at random for moments when true comfort is needed (or when I need to use up some leftover cream).  Use the "three bowl" method:  Bowl 1: beat 450ml cream until thick.  Bowl 2: beat three eggs and 1/4 cup caster sugar for a few minutes until thick and very pale.  Bowl 3: place a heatproof bowl over a small pan of simmering water and melt 300g of chocolate (I prefer dark but you can use any sort). Once the chocolate has cooled (transfer chocolate to a cool bowl to speed up the process), stir into the egg mix until completely combined.  Spoon in about 2/3 of the whipped cream, and use a big metal spoon to fold in gently.  Once combined, refrigerate for about two hours or until set; spoon over the remaining cream and sprinkle over raspberries (or any other fruit or berry).  Warning: comforting in small doses only!

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