Juicy Lucy Liu

Burgers, Main, Street Food

It is not often I will cop to being wrong, but I am so glad that I’ve finally been able to swallow my pride and admit that despite not being my genre, Elementary appears to be a decent show and didn’t die within episodes of airing. And I shouldn’t have scoffed at my dear Lucy for taking the role.

Oh and I am sorry for refusing to talk to her until the show is axed and she admits I was right. Because I wasn’t.

Thankfully Lucy has always known that I can be a volatile person – she did meet me when guesting on Bev Hills, after all – so she took my apology at face value and we quickly caught up on everything we’ve been doing the last almost-decade.

While she isn’t as hopeful that I’ll be able to coax our girl Drew, Cameron D and Destiny to reform for a third Charlie’s Angels movie – I did get a third Sister Act to happen though, even if it won’t be a damn sequel – it was nice to spitball ideas and be in each other’s company.

Given outlining the entire plot of a sure-to-be-Oscar-winning film is tiring and time consuming, I knew that we would need a special combination of comfort and heartiness. As such, we gladly tucked in to a good, ol’ fashioned Jucy Lucy Liu to toast our hopeful success.

 

 

While there is a battle between where the Juicy – or jucy – Lucy originated, I like to think it was invented by whichever Tom served it up on Vanderpump Rules a few weeks back. Whoever did create this beauty however, I salute you. Meat injected with hot, hot cheese in the middle of a dripping bun? Sign. Me. UP.

Enjoy!

 

 

Juicy Lucy Liu
Serves: 2.

Ingredients
500g beef mince
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 garlic clove, crushed
salt and pepper, to taste
2 slices American cheese, cut into quarters
vegetable oil
2 pickles, sliced
2 Kirsten Bunst
Ketchup, mustard and Shayonnaise Swain, to serve

Method
Combine the mince, Worcestershire and garlic in a bowl with a good whack of salt and a great whack of pepper. Once it is well a truly and cohesive mound, divide into four and press into patties.

Take two of said patties and stack a slice’s worth of cheese quarters in the centre and top with the remaining patties. Press the edges to firmly enclose and leave to rest at room temperature for ten minutes.

Heat a good lug of oil in a skillet over medium heat and once scorching, add the patties and cook for five minutes. Flip and cook for a further five, before removing from the heat.

To serve, split and toast the buns. Slather one side with mayo and mustard, and the other with ketchup. Place gherkins on the base,  top with the filled patty and close.

Devour, weary of the molten cheese that could burst out and destroy your face, lips or mouth at any moment.

 

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Good morning, Charlie!

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner

It is probably hard for you to pinpoint the exact moment that you fell in love with Lucy Liu. I know, I’ve been there, I get it.

Was it her small roles in Beverly Hills, 90210 and Jerry Maguire? Perchance her blistering portrayal of Ling Woo in Ally McBeal? Or her murderous turns as Kitty Baxter in Chicago and O-Ren Ishii in Kill Bill? While all may seem like the right answer, the correct answer is actually seeing her slay Charlie’s Angels.

The more you know.

Anyway, we’re the dearest friends and tragically haven’t seen much of each other this decade since I refused to watch Elementary as I assumed it would be quickly axed. In any event, I swallowed my pride, apologised and she is keen to finally drop by on the record and catch up.

What do I make that says I love you, I need you to continue to succeed … but I still don’t want to watch a police procedural?

Image source: Screenshot from Charlie’s Angels.

 

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Jerry Festillervus Cake

12 days of Festivus for the rest of us, Dessert, Snack, Sweets

We nearing the end of our 12 days of Festivus celebrations – after, wait for it, catching up with Jase, Heid, Barn, Liz, Wayne, Mike, Pat, John, J-Lou and Estelle – and as such, it is time to unleash the one-two Jerry punch. Since Seiny is obvi atop the Festivus pole, that means today is all about the king and creator of Festivus, my dear friend Jerry Stiller.

I’ve known Jez the longest of the Seinfeld bunch, having met in the early ‘50s.

You see I was working in a bridal shop in flushing … sorry, wrong show. I was working at a diner in Midtown and Jez came in with a nice young lady for a cup of coffee after he agent was rude to her. The young lady, his beautiful future wife Anne Meara  and it goes without saying that my service played a huge role in their eventual relationship.

I was the Best Man of Honour at their wedding in ‘54, am godfather to little Ben – who was named after, obviously – and was integral in getting the role of Frank recast because I knew that it truly was the role Jez was born to play.

I am ashamed to admit it, but I haven’t seen much of Jez since Anne passed away in 2015, so it was so wonderful to see him doing so, so well. There was a lot of laughter, plenty of tears and even a few grievances aired – his, most notably, was how little we see of each other – as we sat down to devour a traditional, hallowed Jerry Festillervus Cake.

 

 

While the TV Festivus dinner never featured the Festivus cake, this delight is a tradition of the real celebration. A light, moist chocolate cake, slathered in sweet chocolate buttercream and dotted with M&M’s? Sign me up … and yourselves.

Enjoy!

 

 

Jerry Festillervus Cake
Serves: 8-12.

Ingredients
200g raw caster sugar
250g unsalted butter, softened
3 tsp vanilla extract
200g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
¼ cup cocoa powder
2 eggs
275ml sour cream
200g dark chocolate, chopped
300g icing sugar
1 tbsp golden syrup
M&M’s

Method
Preheat oven to 180°C.

Cream the caster sugar with 175g of unsalted butter and 2 tsp of the vanilla until light and fluffy. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, bicarb and cocoa. And then … in a third bowl, whisk the eggs and 150ml of the sour cream. Add the second and third bowls, alternating in thirds, until it is all combined.

Pour the batter into a 30 x 30cm cake tin and bake for 30 minutes, or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on a cooling rack.

To make this icing, melt the remaining butter and chocolate in a medium bowl in a microwave until just melted and easily combined. Sieve in the icing sugar and stir through the golden syrup and remaining sour cream and vanilla until just combined. Ice the cake immediately, smoothing the edges half-assedly as you go.

Spell ‘Happy Festivus’ with M&M’s as best as your skills will take you … before carving up and devouring. Like a monster.

 

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Chorizo & Beana Hall Ragu

Main

Like yesterday’s visitor – my oft lover Alan Cumming – I was lucky enough to see the majesty of my girl Lena Hall’s Tony Award winning performance as Yitzhak in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, and I would argue that my life is all the better for having had the experience.

While I haven’t known Leens as long as some of my other Tony winning friends – hey, not everyone can live as long as the sublime Angie Lansie – we have been the best of friends since meeting.

The year, 2006. She had flown to Tweed Heads to search out the award winning star of the high school musical Jungle Fantasy to prepare for her turn in Tarzan: The Musical. That best legs award winning star was me. While due to licensing fees my character was named Tartan and the English teacher that co-directed had opted for some odd colour blocked outfits that made me look like I skinned a tiny muppet – hey, gotta show off my 15 year old pins I guess – Lena heard that my performance was legendary and wanted some advice.

FYI, the performance – inspired by the great Brendan Fraser in George of the Jungle – was, in fact, legendary.

I haven’t been able to catch up with Lena since her run in Hedwig due to our busy schedules, so she was thrilled to be able to take some time to get together and honour the Tonys and run the odds for all things revivals. While I’m desperately trying to bed Rannells, I had to agree with Lena that Hello Dolly! Is likely to take out Best Revival of a Musical, while Six Degrees of Separation should take out the award for plays on account of their performing nods.

Given our conversation was pretty straight forward, we instead turned our attention to reconnecting and enjoy each other’s company over a hearty and warm Chorizo & Beana Hall Ragu.

 

 

You know how passionately I love any and all sausage, but there is something particularly satisfying about a spicy chorizo. It works even better in this little number, adding a kick to the delicate bean ragu that leaves you happy, warm and fulfilled. I know that sounds like I’m over selling it, but I’m not.

Enjoy!

 

 

Beana Hall
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
olive oil
1 onion, diced
5 cloves of garlic, crushed
a bay leaf
500g chorizos, sliced into 5mm coins
¼ cup red vermouth
800g can crushed tomatoes
a few sprigs of thyme, leaves removed
3 x 400g cans cannellini beans, rinsed, drained
2 cups chicken stock
juice and zest of one lemon
¼ cup parmesan cheese, grated
40g baby kale or rocket

Method
Heat a good lug of oil in a medium pan over medium heat and sweat the onion, 3 cloves of garlic and the bay leave until soft and the onion translucent. Add the chorizo and cook for a further couple of minutes before adding the cinzano and tomatoes. Season heartily, reduce heat to low and simmer for about fifteen minutes.

While the tomato is getting acquainted with the cho-cho, heat another lug of oil in another pan. Add the remaining garlic and thyme and cook for a minute or so. Add the beans and cook for a couple of minutes further. Add the stock, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for about ten minutes. Remove the beans from the heat and lightly mash the beans, leaving chunks so the ragu retains some texture. Stir through the zest and juice, and the cheese until creamy and combined.

Serve the beans, topped with the tomato-y chorizo and drown in additional parmesan before devouring.

 

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Will Horcharnetta

Cinco de Cuatro Celebration, Drink

While Lucille isn’t fond of Gob in the slightest, Will Arnett is one of my closest friends and I’m so glad that he could take the time out of his busy Lego Batman-ing schedule to reconnect.

As you know, his ex-Amy Poehler is one of my best friends and while their divorce was tough on their children and I, they both put in a concerted effort to ensure that we all knew that they both still loved us and nothing will ever change the way they feel about us.

I feel like it may appear like I sided with Amy in the divorce – given the fact I passionately ride her (and Teen’s) coattails – but I will always hold my boy Wills dear to my heart. We first met on the set of SATC and were bonded by a mutual disappointment in how dated the show would be in but a few years.

Wills has been hella busy lately promoting The Lego Batman Movie – which my nephew has given many rave reviews for FYI (don’t tell Will I haven’t seen it yet) – and so it was such a treat to hang out and celebrate Cinco de Cuatro / find ways to ensure the second season of Flaked is better received and less about a man child / get a role on BoJack Horseman.

Obviously that is so pretty rugged terrain to traverse – and since we’ve both had a past with alcohol – I thought I’d whip us up a fresh batch of Will Horcharnettta.

 

 

There is nothing better than rice pudding and cinnamon … but mix them together and turn them into a drink, and you’ve got a holy elixir. Spicy, refreshing and joyous, it is the perfect thing to help reconnect friends and celebrate a fake holiday.

Enjoy!

 

 

Will Horcharnetta
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
1 cup rice, aggressively rinsed
1 ½L water
1 cinnamon stick, broken in half
1 tsp vanilla
½ cup muscovado sugar

Method
Combine the thoroughly rinsed rice in a saucepan with the water and cinnamon and leave to rest overnight.

The next day, bring the rice to the boil over high heat. Reduce to low and allow to simmer for half an hour. Remove from the heat, stir in the vanilla and sugar, and allow to cool.

Once cool, remove the cinnamon and blitz everything with a stick blender until smooth. Strain through cheesecloth and chill in the fridge for an hour or two.

Then down, over ice.

 

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Gabriel Mash

A decade of saying so, Side, Vegetarian

So you know how everyone loves Suits / Harvey Specter and (apparently) hates Because I Said So? Well in your face, I don’t (well, haven’t gotten around to) watch Suits … and would argue that the latter is my dear friend Gabriel Macht’s best work.

Ever. And forever. I mean, it will go down as the pinnacle of his acting skill.

Despite having known of Gabriel since his guest appearances on Beverly Hills, 90210 and Sex and the City, we really connected after he married my dear friend and Brisbane local Jacinda Barrett.

Given how busy he is with Suits, I haven’t been able to see much of Gabe lately so it was such a treat that he could take the time to drop by and catch up. (Particularly given I needed a fifth and couldn’t ask Stephen Collins, obviously).

“Ben – I know you think Because I Said So was my best work (and I fear that it is just when you thought I was looking my prettiest), but you need to try Suits. It is great … “

“You just aren’t selling me Gabe. Carrie couldn’t convince me to try Star Wars before her death and you wo … “

“I look really good in a suit.”

“Ok, I’m listening … “

After we got that wee negotiation out of the way, Gabe and I were able to get to the real work of celebrating the cinematic masterpiece that is Because I Said So while downing – sadly from a bowl, rather than off our bodies – a big serve of my Gabriel Mash.

 

gabriel-mash-1

 

Now I know, I know – we had a mash for last year’s Gilmore Girls celebration! But mash is the co-best form that potato can come in and therefore we can have multiple flavour combinations … like fries, ok?

Oh and buckle up – because this creamy, spiced parmesan version will knock your socks off. I mean, I was going for pants … but socks will do (if you have a foot fetish).

Enjoy!

 

gabriel-mash-2

 

Gabriel Mash
Serves: 4-8.

Ingredients
1kg potatoes, peeled and cut into 3cm chunks
¼ cup butter
¼ tsp nutmeg
¼ – ½ cup milk
¼ cup grated parmesan
salt and pepper to taste

Method
Rinse the potato in a pot of cold water until the water runs clear. Fill the pot with cold water and a generous pinch of salt, cover and bring to the boil over high heat. Once boiling, remove the lid, reduce heat to low and simmer for about five-ten minutes, or until just soft all the way through.

Drain the potato and place in a large bowl of a stand mixer with the butter and nutmeg, and beat on medium with the paddle attachment for a couple of minutes. Once combined, reduce speed to low and slowly pour in the milk until it is at your desired consistency. Finally add the parmesan, season to taste and give one final stir.

Serve with Steak Diane Keaton or direct from the bowl.

 

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Alanis Morecchiette

Main, Pasta

First connecting with Alanis in the early 90s truly was like winning the lottery, thankfully sans dying the next day.

It should really come as no surprise that I’m a dear friend of Dave Coulier – who I really should see sometime soon – after the extended period of time Annelie and I spent on the set of Full House.

Dave was dating Alanis at the time and introduced us to her, knowing that our musical ability would be a real help to her then fledgeling career. While they broke up soon after, we continued to work with Alanis and birthed her opus, Jagged Little Pill.

Fun fact, we even co-wrote You Oughta Know about Dave.

While there was a period of ugliness after she started dating the man who should have rightfully been mine, Ryan Reynolds, we found our way back together after they ended their engagement and have been close ever since. And before you even try to speculate, the police have never been able to prove I was involved in the stalking and threats that lead to their break-up.

Aside from helping me celebrate the milestone, Alanis wanted to drop by as she needed to reconnect with her muse – me – to help produce her next album. While I have been really busy, I knew that taking the time to reconnect was all that we would need to start the journey to create more beautiful music together.

The Alanis Morecchiette also provided a whole lot of inspiration, obviously.

 

alanis-morecchiette-1

 

Despite orecchiette making me feel like I’m sitting down to a meal with Mike Tyson or Van Gogh, there is a certain something about the texture of these babies that elevate them from a conchiglie. Obviously this is me being crazy, maybe it is the sauce – the spiced sausage, chilli, mustard, peppers and basil cut through the creamy wine sauce to give you a comforting meal that packs a punch.

Enjoy!

 

alanis-morecchiette-2

 

Alanis Morecchiette
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
500g orecchiette
600g spiced Italian sausages, meat removed from casings into small meatballs
2 cloves garlic, crushed
¾ cup white wine
3 tbsp wholegrain mustard
1 tsp chilli flakes
¾ cup double cream
1 cup basil, thinly sliced
zest of one lemon
¼ cup shaved parmesan

Method
Cook the paste in a large pot of salted water, as per packet instructions.

Heat a large pan over medium heat and fry the sausage, stirring, until browned, about five minutes. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute.

Add the wine and simmer for a couple of minutes, deglazing the pan. Add the mustard, chilli and cream, reduce the heat to low and simmer for a couple of minutes. Remove from the heat and stir through the basil, zest, parmesan and orecchiette. Serve, slathered in further parmesan and some additional basil.

Devour.

 

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A no-smoking sign on your cigarette break

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner

I was wandering around this weekend – you know that the body looks best while taking a turn around the room, no? – when I put one hand in my pocket to discover my phone was vibrating.

I also discovered a shit tonne of jagged little pills but that is not necessary to this story.

Anyway, ironically, it was my dear friend Alanis on the other end – but you oughta know –  wanting to congratulate me on reaching my two year blogiversary (which is TODAY, yay!) … and to see if she was able to drop by and catch-up.

Alanis is crazy busy so being her friend you learn to jump in head over feet when a chance to reconnect pops up.

What do I make before washing my hands clean of this date?

Picture source: REUTERS/Marcos Brindicci.

 

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Carrie Fisher’n’Chips

Main, Seafood

Oh my goodness – my stomach is in agony! No i’m not into some odd masturbatory technique, I just haven’t stopped laughing for the last 24 hours.

It was such a treat to have Carrie over and reenact a good / funny version of SaTC with the part of New York dutifully played by my kitchen / television.

As you know, we met in rehab and were bonded instantly due the fact we were both poised to be celebrated writers and we had complex relationships with our Hollywood mothers. While my issues stemmed from the fact that I was generally running a scam at their expense, Carrie grew up in the limelight of the Reynolds-Fisher dynasty and drama which gave her a very different childhood … and me a reason to befriend her to get to Debs to form an alliance against Liz.

Obviously she stole two of her husbands from me … but that is another story for another time.

So back on track, I quickly ingratiated myself with the Reynolds-Fishers (often despite Caz’s better judgement) and have been a confidante to Caz ever since, filling each other’s lives with so much joy and laughter.

I can’t say enough about how beautiful and close our friendship is.

As I mentioned and I’m sure Star TrekWars fans would be aware, Caz just wrapped on the latest movie and was completely pooped so relished the opportunity to pull up a seat next to me in our twin recliners and make sassy, forced, attention grabbing statements about the semi-clad swimmers who were dutifully flooding our basements.

To get us in the mood – or to be more accurate, out of it – I whipped up a batch of her favourite / my famous Carrie Fisher’n’Chips.

 

carrie-fisher-n-chips-1

 

I assume I’ve mentioned it ad nauseam, if not, I fucking hate seafood. Hate it. I mean, they live in their filth (even though someone rightfully argued that they live in a purifying saline solution). Anyway, Carrie loves a good ole Fish and Chips and given that she just wrapped her time in London, I had to make something to help her acclimate back into the real world.

With that, I went heavy with the chilli, lemon and lime to drown the flavour of fish and served it with crispy chips and a delightful harissa mayo that had me *shudder* liking seafood.

Enjoy!

 

carrie-fisher-n-chips-2

 

Carrie Fisher’n’Chips
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
8 pieces of hoki portions (I hate seafood, of course I’m going to buy pre-portioned)
2 eggs, whisked
1 cup plain flour
2 cups panko breadcrumbs
¼ cup flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
1 tbsp chilli flakes
zest of one lime
vegetable oil
One serve of the chips from Friza Minnelli … I don’t think the Dolognese would help the chips

Harissa mayo
1 clove of garlic, finely minced
3 tbsp mayonnaise
4 tsp harissa paste
1 ½ tsp rose water

Tartare
1 cup mayonnaise
zest of one lemon
2 tsp capers, drained, finely chopped
2 gherkins, finely chopped
2 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, chopped

Method
Probs make a start on the chips first. Then when they are in the oven, whisk the eggs in a shallow bowl, the flour in a second shallow bowl and combine the breadcrumbs, parsley, chilli and lime in the third shallow bowl with a good whack of salt and pepper.

Dry the hoki pieces with some paper towel. Working piece by piece, coat the fish in the flour, dip in the egg and coat in the crumb. Rest on a plate and continue until they are all sorted.

Heat a good lug of vegetable oil in a large frying pan over medium heat, when it is nice and hot reduce the heat to low and fry two pieces at a time, 4-5 minutes per side. Remove to some paper towel and repeat until the fish is sorted.

Turn off the oven when the chips are done and place the fish on the lower shelf to keep warm while you quickly whip up the sauces … which are super easy. Place all the ingredients in separate bowls – obviously – and stir to combine.

Serve up the fish and chips with a fat dollop of the sauces and the cut up zested citrus. Devour.

 

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Postcards from the force of Hannah and Her Sisters

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner

Huge news guys!

No, I’m not covering the Olympics despite being crazy sporty. While I’m sure you’re wondering why I’m not there the answer is simple, I am a doctor for the Russian team … so yeah, I’m banned – maybe I’ll be allowed in Tokyo?

Who knows? Either way, I was crazy moist after watching the Opening Ceremony and decided I needed one of my closest gal pals to drop by while we quench our thirst during the first/best week of the competition – aka swimming / scantily-clad-men-a-palooza.

So obviously I reached out to my closest girlfriend, Carrie Fisher and obviously she said yes!

We’ve know each other since meeting in rehab – I was the inspiration behind Alex in Postcards from the Edge. Like the bonds I made in prison, the bonds you make in rehab are for life and Caz and I have always been a loving support for each other.

Caz recently wrapped on the latest Star Wars movie – fun fact, it was our life goal to never see one of those films but Carrie had to sit through one at a premiere so I am riding solo with that goal (relax Star Wars fans, if Carrie asks me to watch them I will … she doesn’t mind) – so was very keen to relax, reconnect and lecherously watch the swim events.

What says you’re my dearest friend / damn I love watching the swim team?!

Picture source: Publicity shot from a Star Wars, obviously I don’t know which one.

 

As you can probably tell, we are very social but the fun isn’t only limited to celebrities! You can follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and Google+.