Linda Perry Peri Chicken Pizza

Main, Pizza, Poultry, Street Food

What a difference a few days can make, right? After witnessing Glenn’s seventh and Amy’s sixth snubs – no matter how deserving the delightful Olivia and Regina are, it still stung – I started to rage about all the things this Oscars failed me on like Shallow muse Timothée Chalamet and my girls Dolly and Linda Perry getting snubbed.

By the time Linda arrived at my house I was in such a state, alternating between crying and screaming, that she had to pull me into her arms and hold me until I calmed down.

And thanks to her warm, loving friendship, I’ve been in a state of zen since.

I’ve known Linda for years and years, first meeting as teens in San Diego. Fun fact: she taught me that San Diego didn’t actually translate to mean whale’s vagina, which I passed on to Will Ferrell to use as a joke in Anchorman.

But anyway, she was always so patient and kind with me, despite my many foibles, so I jumped at the chance to move to San Francisco with her in the ‘80s and I of course, vowed to make her a star.

Given how insanely busy she has been recently, Linda and I haven’t spent as much time together as we would like, so it was wonderful to be able to just have time to reconnect. And smash a piping hot Linda Perry Peri Chicken Pizza.

 

 

A crunchy base, sweet tomatoes and the fiery spice of peri peri chicken work together to form the perfect pizza for warming up a surprisingly cold evening in Brisbane. FYI, it got down to 25°C.

Enjoy!

 

 

Linda Perry Peri Chicken Pizza
Serves: 2-6.

Ingredients
2 bases as per Pizsa Zsa Gabor
olive oil
2 chicken breasts, diced
½ cup peri peri sauce
⅓ cup passata
oregano and basil, roughly chopped, to taste
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1 cup baby spinach
200g cherry tomatoes, halved
mozzarella, to taste

Method
Prep the bases as per Zsa Zsa’s instructions.

Heat a lug of olive oil in a skillet and cook the diced chicken for five minutes or so, or until cooked through. Add the peri peri – more if needed – and cook for a further couple of minutes, or until well coated.

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Smear passata over the prepared bases, sprinkle of the herbs, onion, spinach, spicy chicken and cherry tomatoes, before blanketing – I mean, you don’t have to but who wouldn’t – in mozzarella.

Transfer to the oven and bake for fifteen minutes, or until bubbly and golden. Before devouring, thinking about how wrong it is that Lind and Doll still don’t have Oscars.

 

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My sweet dumplin’

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner

As much as I love it, the marathon that is Awards Season is over for another year and it is so nice to be able to stop and breathe a little bit.

That being said, I’ve decided to invite my dear friend Linda Perry over this week in honour of her being egregiously snubbed of a well deserved Oscar nom for the soundtrack of Dumplin’.

I mean, I feel more attacked by the Academy than Glenn must, given ignoring Dumplin’ was ignoring just one, but two of my dear, sweet friends.

But it isn’t about me.

What do I make that says you’ll always be the girl in the movies wearing red shoes who won’t push and pull if we don’t … to me? Sorry, I went down a title rabbithole.

Image source: Unknown.

 

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Tituss Burizo & Chicken Rolls

Hashbrown: The End, Main, Side, Snack, Street Food

Now I know I said I don’t have favourites when I caught up with Carol way back when – you know, before Dylan and Ellie – but there is no denying that Titus is he true heart and soul of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. From scamming Kimmy in the early episodes, to lemonading and fighting with High Schoolers, Titus has my heart. And that is because of the iconic work of my dear friend Tituss.

Oh and it doesn’t help that he was based off me. Thanks Teens!

While I didn’t meet Tituss until he appeared on 30 Rock, I was blown away by his hilarious performance and immediately attached myself to him. And vowed to get him a damn Emmy one of these days.

Despite not making that a reality – yet – Tituss never throws shade at me when we have our monthly catch up to gossip and gulp down as much pinot noir as humanly possible. Which we obvs just refer to as the gossip and gulp date.

In any event, Tituss was thrilled to add another date to our busy dance card, particularly in light of the end of him playing me. As is oft the case, we laughed, we cried – which is becoming more and more prevalent as the end approaches – and gorged on as much comfort food as possible. Like some Tituss Burizo & Chicken Rolls.

 

 

Bet you thought I was going to make a red wine themed meal, no? Well instead of going with the literal interpretation, I instead opted to take another phallic symbol and form it into something just as comforting. And how do you go past smokey sausage wrapped in warm, doughy pastry? You can’t.

Enjoy!

 

 

Tituss Burizo & Chicken Rolls
Serves: 6-8.

Ingredients
300g raw chorizo, casing removed
300g chicken mince
1 onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 zucchini, grated
1 carrot, peeled and grated
1 rosemary sprig, leaves finely chopped
salt and pepper, to taste
2 sheets puff pastry
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp sesame seeds

Method
Preheat oven to 200°C.

Combine the chorizo, chicken, onion, garlic, zucchini, carrot and rosemary in a large bowl with a good whack of salt and pepper, and scrunch with your hands into it comes together in a cohesive ball.

Cut each piece of puff pastry in half and divide the dough into four. Shape into long sausages and place close to a long edge of each piece of pastry. Tightly roll and cut each into 4-6 pieces and transfer to a lined baking sheet, seam side down.

Brush with egg and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Transfer to the oven to bake for half an hour, or until golden, flaky and cooked.

 

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Nutellyrsa Eclairres

Baking, Dessert, Snack, Survivor, Survivor: David vs. Goliath, Sweets, TV Recap

Previously on Survivor, Jabeni were riding high on their egg reward however tragically the protein wasn’t enough to get them immunity, sending them to tribal council. While that appeared to mean certain doom for Lyrsa and Nick, Natalie continued to grate on her tribemates. She then attempted to bully Lyrsa or Nick into giving up their jackets for a cold Angelina to secure themselves safety, which backfired as they all joined together to blindside her while Angelina desperately begged her for her jacket.

Natalie. Natalie. Natalie ..?

The next day Jabeni were feeling positive without Natalie’s negativity to bring them down, while Lyrsa was just shocked to still be there. Angelina apologised for writing Lyrsa, explaining it was all a ploy for the jacket which did not sit well with Lyrsa. They lay around bonding, laughing and reminiscing about Natalie epically ignoring Angelina. Speaking of whom, Mike, Nick and Lyrsa got together to talk smack about Angelina’s desperation at tribal, with them all agreeing that they do not trust her and that she is the next to go. If it gets to that.

Over at Tiva the nerdmance continued to be adorable as Christian explained fishing and Gabby was sweet. Suck it haters who are done with her crying. Wouldn’t you cry if you had to live through multiple cyclones? Anyway, Christian wasn’t successful but he did lure John to the shore and I am moister than an oyster.

Speaking of flooding my basement, Jeff arrived for this week’s reward challenge where the tribes would have a bag of coconuts tethered to one tribe member with the remaining members forced to lug it about as they go through an obstacle course, release four rings and then land their rings on a long, hard pole. Given it was for cooking utensils, spices and kebabs, everyone was salivating and ready to dominate. Alec and Gabby got Vuku and Tiva out to an early lead, as Alec’s junk bounced everywhere. Sadly Alec’s BDE wasn’t enough to land the rings allowing John and Dan to snatch the win for Tiva while Nick snatched second for Jabeni. But they get to look at Alec so everyone got some meat, you know?

Tiva returned to camp to celebrate their victory and cook up their kebabs, and most importantly, the brochachos were feeding each other by hand and I love it. Christian, John and Dan are the throuple we deserve, the latter’s pining for Kara be damned. Gabby and Alison however started to notice that the throuple hooking up was bad for them, so the girls got together and pledged their allegiance to each other. Gabby then started to break down, leading to Alison tearing up and damn I need this tribe to all make the merge. So they can stay dating, obvi.

Though Alison’s plan to blindside Dan is definitely something I can get behind, given a blindside of someone with two idols is always fun.

Meanwhile over at Vuku Kara and Elizabeth seemed to be getting closer again, with Kara trying to massage her back which she injured four weeks before heading out to the island. They then started splitting the bamboo in the shelter in an attempt to make things more comfortable, which Davie and Carl felt was a bad idea given it would be dark soon and the shelter would be uneven. This annoyed Elizabeth, who felt that they were being unfair and she can’t take it anymore, while the boys were frustrated that she was doing it while everyone else was trying to relax. The only person thrilled by the turn of events seemed to be Kara, who knew that should they lose the upcoming immunity challenge, Elizabeth is the most likely target.

Speaking of which, Jeff returned for said challenge where the tribes were required to carry a large heavy saucer to a water tower, fill it with water, carry it through obstacles, pour water into a well, release puzzle pieces and, wait for it, solve said puzzle. Vuku and Tiva got out to an early lead, until Vuku lost most of their water, followed by Jabeni, leaving Tiva to storm ahead. Tiva made quick work of the puzzle, followed by Vuku handing them both immunity before Jabeni even released their puzzle pieces. TBH, it wasn’t easy to watch. Particularly when they dropped their saucer on the third attempt and opted to give up.

Back at camp Mike was feeling emotional about crushing someone’s dreams at the upcoming tribal council. Given there are 7 people left from each of the original tribes and he was anticipating a merge, Mike was growing concerned that he will need to turn on Nick and Lyrsa to save himself moving forward. While Angelina was hoping to work with Lyrsa, the latter still didn’t trust Angelina after jacketgate and as such, Angelina was stuck working with Mike. Angelina approached Mike and locked in the vote for Mike and agreed that they need to get Nick on board. Lyrsa and Mike got together to talk about getting rid of Angelina, with Mike open to the idea while Nick was being worked Angelina to turn on Lyrsa. Rounding out the pairings, Nick and Mike approached each other to decide which way they will go giving Angelina is a bigger threat … but Mike is scared about taking her out and screwing over all of the Goliaths.

At tribal council Nick spoke about how tight the tribe has gotten in such a small time, Mike spoke about loving everyone but being concerned about navigating the next part of the game. Lyrsa agreed that trust and loyalty were the key factors in her decision tonight, while Angelina added strategy which is pretty much a given, no? And kinda just paints a target on her back. Angelina channelled Keith and spoke about sticking to the plan, Lyrsa mentioned everyone has a plan and Nick pledged his loyalty to Jabeni rather than the OG tribes. Angelina then jumped in to sing Nick’s praises which seemed a bit desperate. Thankfully Lyrsa called her out for trying to buy his vote, while Mike reiterated that tonight’s vote will dictate the remainder of the game. With that the tribe voted and it seemed Mike chose to set the game up for the Goliaths – maybe – by taking out Lyrsa and sending her to the jury.

While Lyrsa – the bright, sparkling gem that she is – took her boot in her stride, she wasn’t hella salty about the fact she would be vacationing with Natalie and then has to suffer through sitting next to her at the reunion special. And while I love Natalie with all my heart, I also loved Lyrsa so I let her talk smack about my friend before trying to sweeten the deal with a couple of big fat Nutellyrsa Eclairres.

 

 

Eclairs are perfect. Nutella too, is perfect. So therefore it should go without saying that Nutella flavoured eclairs are perfect, however I do have that theory that two hot people can have a really ugly baby? In any event, this is delicious. Like the random hot child born of two classically unattractive peeps. Though this isn’t random, since eclairs and nutella. I’ll stop talking.

Enjoy!

 

 

Nutellyrsa Eclairres
Serves: 1 salty boot, or 12 happy peeps.

Ingredients
1 batch Eclair Danes, including crème pâtissière but not the chocolate glaze
1 cup nutella
½ cup roasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped

Method
Prep the eclairs as per Claire’s recipe, up to filling the pastry but before you glaze.

Once that is done, fill a piping bag with nutella and chill for half an hour or so.

Pipe on to the top of the eclairs, sprinkle with hazelnuts and devour. Knowing that cutting out the difficult part of the recipe on this page lulled you into a false sense of security.

 

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Jonathan Dan Bennoodles

Main, That Is So Fetch Week

Hey, do you know what day it is? Of course you do! It’s October 3rd aka Mean Girls Day aka the entire reason for this year’s That’s So Fetch Week going public. I know you were probably hoping that Tina or Linds would be dropping by, but they have both already gone here … and Linds is still busy stopping that child trafficking ring. So following in Mands and Dan’s footsteps is none other than Aaron Samuels himself, Jonathan Bennett.

Aka the entire reason we have Mean Girls day.

As I alluded to yesterday, Dan Fran and I had a tragic break-up on the set of Mean Girls due by my infatuation for Jonathan which culminated in our torrid affair. Tragically it ended too – maybe because I am too much like Regina George – but Jono and I have been the best of friends ever since.

Hell, I even forgave him for writing the Mean Girls Cookbook without me, that is how close we are. Though considering he chose to go with an actual chef over someone that tries things he finds only and quadruples the garlic content and adds chilli, I really had no right being offended in the first place.

Giving how busy he has been successfully writing a cookbook and hosting a baking show, Jon and I haven’t seen as much of each other as we would like lately. I mean, as besties we Skype each day, particularly since I introduced him to his Amazing Race-r boyfie Jaymes, but there is nothing like the real thing of hanging out with your friends in the same room. Smashing some Jonathan Dan Bennoodles.

 

 

Once again proving my non-chef credentials, this dan dan was inspired by a couple of recipes I found online though hella simplified. And probably nothing like how it should taste. Rich, nutty, spicy and fresh, this baby will fill you with joy and put a fire in your belly. Given the heaping of chilli, obvi.

Enjoy!

 

 

Jonathan Dan Bennoodles
Serves: 4-6.

Ingredients
1 tbsp vegetable oil
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp ginger, minced
500g pork mince
3 tbsp Chinese chilli oil
1 tsp ground Sichuan peppercorns
½ tsp Chinese five spice
2 tsp hoisin sauce
2 tsp shaoxing wine
1 tsp dark soy sauce
2 tbsp tahini
3 tbsp light soy sauce
2 tsp raw caster sugar
2 cups chicken stock
1 tbsp smooth peanut butter
400g udon noodles, cooked as per packet instructions
1 cup baby spinach
1 bok choy, quartered
1 shallot, sliced

Method
Heat the vegetable oil in a large pot over high heat and cook the garlic and ginger for a minute. Add the mince and cook for a further couple of minutes before reducing the heat to medium and adding the chilli oil, spices, sauces, sugar, stock and peanut butter. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer until the sauce reduces.

Cook the udon as per packet instructions and add a tablespoon of cooking water to the pan if it starts to get too thick. Add the baby spinach and bok choy to the pan, and cook until heated through before tossing through the noodles.

Serve immediately, sprinkled with shallots and devour. Because it’s October 3rd.

 

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Chicken Daniel Francese

Main, Poultry, That Is So Fetch Week

Unlike Mands, I didn’t meet Dan Franzese – or Dan Fran, as I prefer to call him – until we were on the set of Mean Girls. Given it was based on my life story, I had offered Tina support in coaching the three actors whose characters which were based on me; Regina, her mum – when Ames plays your future self, you know you’ve made it – and too gay to function Damian.

After five minutes in the trailer, I noticed that Dan didn’t need any help with the character, instilling Damian with humanity that my teenself couldn’t even fathom having. So instead, we hung-out. And by hung-out, we commenced a torrid affair.

While you will soon find out that out all-too-brief affair ended in a total disaster, we remained friends against all odds and I am so proud of the career that Dan Fran has gone on to have. Despite me vowing to ruin his career, even though I was in the wrong when our relationship ended. Hell, I even suggested him to Jonathan for a role in looking!

Damn – why am I admitting fault?

Given he is busy being a successful boss, we haven’t had the joy of spending as much time together as we would like. As soon as Dan Fran walked into my room, he lit the place up with his beautiful soul. Which off topic reminds me that I need to see Jesse McCartney ASAP.

Anyway … he lit up the room and TBH, that is to be expected when a big plate of Chicken Daniel Francese is awaiting you.

 

 

Lightly coated chicken for optimal crunch, combined with a punch of garlic and lemon works to create a mouthwatering delight. Add in the fresh hit of parsley – which I never thought I would say but it really makes it sing – and I just can’t stop.

Enjoy!

 

 

Chicken Daniel Francese
Serves: 2-4.

Ingredients
flour, salt and pepper, to taste
4 chicken breasts (about 11/2 pounds)
2 eggs, whisked
olive oil
4 garlic cloves, sliced
1 lemon, half sliced and the other half juiced
½ cup dry vermouth
1 cup chicken stock
¼ cup parsley, roughly chopped

Method
Combine a cup or two of flour in a large bowl with a good whack of salt and pepper. In a second bowl whisk the eggs with a couple of tablespoons of water.Flatten the chicken breasts with the back of a frying pan until they’re about 2cm thick.

Heat a good lug of oil in the base of a pan over medium heat. When scorching, dip the chicken in the flour, then the egg and transfer to the skillet to cook for about five minutes on each side, or until golden and crisp. Remove from the pan and leave to rest.

Add a knob of butter to the pan and cook the lemon slices and garlic for a minute or so. Add the vermouth, stock and lemon juice, and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low and leave to simmer for five minutes, stirring through the parsley towards the end. Return the chicken to the pan for a couple of minutes to heat through.

Serve chicken topped with a slice of lemon and drowned in sauce, for optimal devouring.

 

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Lena Wafers

Baking, Dessert, Emmy Gold, Emmy Gold: The Gold Wing, Sweets

It is the second last day of this year’s Emmy Gold celebration The Gold Wing, can you believe? And something something segue Gaz, Marg, Ava, Rami and Rhea something, I am thrilled to catch-up with my dear friend and semi-freshly minted Emmy winner Lena Waithe.

Given she won her Emmy with my (problematic) friend Aziz for the beautiful Thanksgiving episode of Master of None, it should come as no surprise that he is the reason we became friends.

I was visiting the set during season 1 and Lena and I got to talking about our coming out experiences, and Aziz suggested that they write it into the second season. So you’re welcome, because that episode was perfection and he and Lena truly deserved that Emmy and I can’t even begrudge them for not including me in the writing process.

Since her victory, Len’s career has absolutely exploded and while it means we don’t get to see each other as often as we’d like, I’m so proud of her. And it makes our fleeting dates even more special. As a fellow writer, I knew that she would be best placed to go through the writing categories with me. Obviously she agreed that The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’s auteur Amy Sherman-Palladino would snag it for Comedy. Continuing our agreeance, we both backed Phoebe Waller-Bridge for Killing Eve, Steve Martin and Martin Short for their Netflix special and William Bridges and Charlie Brooker will snag it for USS Callister.

With the formalities out of the way, we toasted her success and got to work demolishing a big batch of Lena Wafers.

 

 

Not your childhood’s technicolour crosshatched biscuits, these wafers may not look as perfect but damn they are delicious. Light, sweet and delightfully crisp, they are the only thing worthy of honouring my girl Lena.

Enjoy!

 

 

Lena Wafers
Serves: 6.

Ingredients
115g unsalted butter, at room temperature
100g raw caster sugar
1 egg, whisked
2 tbsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp milk
200g flour
1 tsp baking powder
pinch of kosher salt

Method
Preheat the oven to 180C.

Cream the butter and sugar in a stand mixer for a couple of minutes, or until it is light and fluffy. Still going, add the egg, vanilla and milk and continue beating until just combined.

Combine the flour, baking soda and salt in another bowl before folding through the wet ingredients. Cover and transfer to the fridge for half an hour.

When you’re ready to bake, place teaspoon sized bowls on lined baking sheets, leaving plenty of space for spread. Flatten each ball to form a thin disc and transfer to the oven to bake for fifteen minutes, or until golden.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the sheets for a couple of minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Once set, devour.

 

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