Saturday, October 17, 2009


I was first introduced to the delights of home made roti at a dinner party by my good friends, Annie & Franco from The Byron Bay Coffee Co.  On that occasion Annie made coconut roti to accompany a Thai style soup. I was so taken by them that I started to do a few experiments of my own & came up with the following recipe, which has now become a firm favourite in my household.  Once you make your own roti you too will become addicted, just like me.  I served these roti with a Beef Vindaloo, steamed Basmati Rice, Cucumber & Yoghurt Raita & Green Mango Chutney. This recipe will make 8 roti.


2 cups of plain or whole wheat flour
1 tsp sea salt
2 tbs sunflower/peanut oil
½ to ¾ cup of warm water
½ sachet of dried yeast (3.5gms)
extra flour for dusting


Activate the yeast in the warm water until foaming. In a large mixing bowl add the salt & oil to the flour & rub through with your fingertips until incorporated. Make a well in the centre of the flour & gradually add the water/yeast mixture using your fingers & mix well until you have a soft & pliable dough. Knead the dough until it becomes smooth & elastic (5 to 10 mins). Cover with a slightly damp cloth and set aside in a warm place to prove for 1 hour.
Punch the dough down, lightly knead again then divide into 8 equal portions. Roll each portion into golf ball size rounds & place on a tray & cover with the damp cloth & let rest for another 20 minutes or so. Take 1 ball of dough at a time and flatten it into a round disk using your palms. Dust your work area and rolling pin with a little bit of flour to prevent sticking. Gently roll the flattened ball into a circle approximately 15cms in diameter, making sure the roti is thin & of even thickness.
Heat a large heavy based griddle/frying pan on medium heat, spray with cooking oil and carefully place a roti in the pan. After a minute or so bubbles will appear & the underside will be lightly golden, turn the roti & cook the other side. Repeat until all roti are cooked. Serve immediately with your favourite curry or dips. Enjoy!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Spicy Black Bean Prawn & Squid

Here's a quick & easy stir fry I would like to share with you.  It takes no time at all to pull together but has great depth of flavour & will be sure to impress your family & friends. I can't remember where I originally sourced the recipe but I believe it was inspired by the wonderful Neil Perry.  This quantity will serve four with plain steamed rice & some braised bok choy.


4 tablespoons vegetable oil
500g green king prawns, shelled, deveined and butterflied
6 small squid tubes halved & scored
1 tablespoon fermented black beans
1/2 a red onion, sliced
2 birdseye chillis, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 knob ginger, finely sliced
3 tablespoons diced red capsicum
3 tablespoons diced green capsicum
4 long green shallots, in 3cm lengths
3 tablespoons light soy sauce
2 tablespoons shaoxing (Chinese cooking wine)
3 tablespoons oyster sauce
1 teaspoon caster sugar
coriander leaves for garnish


Heat the oil in a wok until just smoking. Stir fry the prawns until they are just cooked, remove from the wok and set aside.
Add the black beans, onion, chilli, garlic, ginger and red and green capsicum and stir fry until fragrant. Add the shaoxing wine, soy, caster sugar and oyster sauce then add the squid, return the prawns to the wok and toss through being careful not to overcook the seafood.
Scatter with the coriander and finely sliced shallot. Serve with steamed jasmine rice.