Saramen Lacina

Main, Soup, Survivor: Game Changers – Mamanuca Islands, TV Recap

Previously on Survivor, Ciera exited first – not able to throw the target on to her mother, followed by Tony, Caleb, a screwed but-not-in-the-way-I-want-to-screw-him Malcolm, J.T., Queen Sandra, and a desperate Varner. Hali was once again Queen of the jury, quickly followed by Ozzy, Debbie, Zeke, Sierra, Andrea, Michaela, an eliminated by default Cirie, Aubry and Tai, leaving Troyzan and Brad to round out the final three with my girl Sarah Lacina crowned our newest Survivor.

From the very beginning, Sarah knew that she needed to change up her game if she wanted to have a chance … giving us close to 6000 separate quotes about Officer Sarah playing like a criminal. But hey, when it works, you can’t really mock her!

While Sarah was also lucky to avoid most of the pre-merge tribal councils, if they did attend she was well enough positioned that she likely would have survived all the carnage.

When some members of the jury weren’t thrilled with the way she made personal connections only to turn on people, I started to fear she was about to get the Dawn Mehan treatment. Thankfully the new jury format allowed for people to jump in and defend her, and also allowed her more time to address these issues and help win people back to her side.

Despite the heartbreak of not being able to celebrate Sandra’s third win (yet), I was super excited that my dear friend Sarah had learnt from her mistakes was able to convert that into victory. While our friendship started in a questionable manner – she arrested me during one of my wild phases – she took me under her win and tried to do the opposite of her game changers game, turning me from criminal to cop.

Sadly for her, my prior arrests nipped that in the bud … but we always stayed friends and try and catch-up as often as we can for a Saramen Lacina.

 

 

Hot, spicy, sweet and fresh – ramen is always a delicious option. Throw in barbecue pork belly and you can’t go wrong.

Enjoy!

 

 

Saramen Lacina
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
600g pork belly, skin removed (by that … 600g sans skin)
⅓ cup char siu sauce
peanut oil
4 shallots, thinly sliced
3 cloves of garlic, finely minced
1 tbsp grated ginger
4 cups chicken stock
2 tbsp tamari
2 tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp Sriracha
200g ramen noodles
4 eggs
2 baby bok choy, quartered lengthways
100g shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 long red chilli, thinly sliced

Method
Preheat the oven to 220°C.

Brush the pork with half the char siu sauce and place in the oven for half an hour. Reduce heat to 120°C and bake for a further twenty minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to rest, brushing with the remaining char siu sauce.

While the pork is resting, heat a lug of peanut oil in a large pan over medium heat and cook the shallots, garlic and ginger for a couple of minutes, or until super, duper fragrant.

(It is now that you should also bring a small saucepan of water to the boil over high heat).

Back to the fragrant pan, slowly add the stock, tamari, fish sauce, Sriracha and 3 cups of water. Bring to the boil, reduce heat to low, add the noodles, bok choy and mushrooms, and simmer for about five minutes.

With the ramen simmering, the saucepan should be boiling, at which point you should add the eggs and cook for four minutes, or until soft boiled. Peel the eggs.

Then, slice the pork into 1cm thick pieces.

Transfer the ramen to a bowl, top with pork and an egg sliced on top. Probs avoid drizzling Sriracha over the top if you’re wanting to photograph it … but otherwise, that’s the only addition I’d suggest … before devouring your victory meal!

 

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Troyzanella Robertson

Salad, Side, Snack, Survivor: Game Changers – Mamanuca Islands, TV Recap, Vegetarian

With Cirie, Aubry and Tai swiftly ejected from the finale, Cirie under tragic circumstances, we opened up on day 39 with Troyzan sharing a touching story about dreaming of this moment from seeing the very first episode. If only we’d seen more of him this season, I would have shared his confidence.

They got to work whipping up the finale breakfast with Sarah proud of how she has played the game, hoping that the jury would reward her gameplay and her officer-esque honesty at final tribal.

Brad was feeling very confident, sure that he could put his lawyer skills to use and convince the jury to award him the money.

We quickly returned to tribal where the jury looked as disappointed with the final three as I was – I mean, it could have been Sandra, Cirie and Malcolm for fucks sake. Given that this is game changers, Jeff announced one final twist in the game – changing the jury format of the game to allow a more open dialogue between the jury and the finalists.

Zeke was quick to start the dialogue, praising Sarah for turning on him and then returning to tribal every night wearing his jacket AND turning on Sierra while still being able to convince her to hand over the legacy advantage. He then volunteered as tribute for her and this is suddenly the Hunger Games … which kinda makes sense.

Andrea also praised Sarah before breaking down because Sarah had hurt her and she wasn’t sure if she could move past it and feel good about voting for her. Sarah said that she valued all of their relationships, earning laughs from Ozzy and Debbie who couldn’t trust a word she said before volunteering as Brad’s tribute, to champion his victory based solely on challenge performance.

Cirie quickly pointed out that they booted Sierra as she was the brains of Brad and Troy’s operation and without her, assumed they’d wander around bumping into each other. He was obviously very quick to outline that he was in fact responsible for assembling the alliances.

Michaela joined the fray to test Brad on his personal connection to her, highlighting a major flaw in his social game. On the flipside, Andrea and Tai then asked Sarah how she felt about building those relationships for the sole purpose of taking her out. Aubry quickly directed the question to where it needed to go, allowing Sarah to knock her answer out of the park.

Obviously that upset Debbie, with her vowing to vote for Brad. That in turn earned Michaela’s frustration, with her highlighting that it is just a game and they need to get over their hurt feelings. She then threw shade at Troyzan, asking what the hell he even did in the game. That lead to everyone in the jury jumping on board to berate his lack of gameplay.

Andrea was quick to point out that Brad wasn’t very good at forming relationships with people that weren’t a part of his inner circle. Brad tried to defend himself, before Tai cut him off and told him that he clearly has no idea how he comes across to others. Hali then jumped in and the dear law student, schooled the lawyer.

Debbie then added that he was virial and full of testosterone.

Zeke jumped in to point out that Sarah voted correctly all the time because she was always aware of what was going on, while the others did not.

Brad’s tribute from district 7, Ozzy, jumped in to once again praise Brad’s challenge prowess and tell people that that clearly means he deserves the win. Debbie again agreed, before Sarah cut in to point out that he was a professional athlete and kind of had a leg up. Brad tried to cut back in before Michaela told him to shut-it-down and let her finish.

That allowed Sarah to point out more ways she owned the game, manoeuvring around the technicality of voting out Sierra without voting for her and snatching the advantage from under Michaela’s feet while everyone was distracted by Cirie’s balance beam triumph.

Brad gave his last ditch plea, relying pretty much on winning immunities and being a neat guy and helping out at camp. Sarah simply implored them to vote for the best player who controlled every vote, rather than with their hurt feelings. Defeated, Troyzan simply thanked them for being a part of the journey because it meant a lot to him.

With that, they went to vote with Michaela announcing that anyone that didn’t vote for Sarah is a bitter Betty. Ozzy hoped that Brad could do what he couldn’t. Zeke was honour to vote for his girl Sarah and Debbie obviously voted for Brad, hoping that just once good guys – like the guy she screamed at pre-merge – could finish first just once. With that the jury voted, crowning Sarah the sole Survivor and Brad the second second-place Culpepper, and Troyzan as predicted the zero votes third place finisher.

While Troyzan’s game wasn’t very showy, he was far more likeable than his first go-around and that in itself is a win. I mean, I’ve always known that he is a kind, friendly soul as one of his dearest friend – I forced him into taking my photo in swimsuits. He was disappointed when he exited the game, but quickly perked up with a little bit of love from his friend and a big ole Troyzanella Robertson.

 

 

There is nothing more comforting than bread and as such, I knew that this is all that he would ever need to move on from his third place finish. Plus … he knew it was coming since he was on the ballot for Second Chances.

All that aside, this is delicious – fragrant, sweet … and bread. There is damn bread, case closed, it is perfect. Enjoy!

 

 

Troyzanella Robertson
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
200g ciabatta, roughly torn into chunks and left to dry for an hour
600g mixed very ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
salt and pepper, to taste
1 red onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
200g chargrilled capsicum, roughly chopped
a bunch of fresh basil, leaves torn
champagne vinegar
olive oil

Method
Place the tomatoes in a bowl with a good whack of salt and pepper, and toss to combine.

Add the onion, garlic, capsicum, basil, and a good lug of both the champagne vinegar and the olive oil, to taste. Again, toss … you know I love a toss.

Add the bread, toss, serve and devour.

 

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Charcucirie Fields Board

Main, Party Food, Side, Snack, Survivor: Game Changers – Mamanuca Islands, TV Recap

Previously on Survivor, twenty game changing survivors returned to go big or go home which was sadly ironic, with all of the big, iconic players – sans Cirie, Ozzy and Aubry – going home pre-merge. But oh what a pre-merge that was! Tony dug a bunker, Sandra stole something and blamed it on other people, Malcolm was brutally axed by Tai’s first idol and Varner shockingly outed Zeke at tribal.

And then last week happened.

After dominating the merge portion of the game, Cirie went into the second tribal of the episode – after taking out her girl Andrea – with Sarah’s vote steal in hand. Sadly though, she didn’t read the fine print and couldn’t actually use it, planting a seed of distrust with Sarah and sending her other close ally and new queen of jury reactions Michaela, to the jury.

Back at camp, kween Cirie made quick work of winning Sarah back to her side throwing Tai under the bus. While he tried to hem and haw, he eventually opted to continue with his traditional gameplay and immediately flip back, tell the truth and earn the wrath of Sarah.

The next day, Tai went for a walk with Brad to share the knowledge of his two idols to try and win someone over after his disaster last night. Sadly the walk returned villain edit Brad to the fray, saying he would gladly take the idols and vote Tai out … and I don’t think the idol theft would be for the purpose of home decorating.

Probst quickly arrived for the first immunity challenge of the episode – with an additional feast for the victor back at camp – which is a mighty epic maze to collect bags of puzzle pieces. While mazes are always hard to really tell how people are going, Brad, Tai and Troyzan got out to a quick lead, the former taking out a cameraman in the process. Troyzan started to take a lead as Aubry and Cirie started to close the gap. Brad, Aubry and Cirie ultimately made it back to the puzzle first, which really should have favoured Cirie, given her prowess. Sadly it wasn’t the case however, with Sarah closing the gap before Brad just snagged victory despite leaving a piece in the bag the whole time.

As is often the case, Jeff gave Brad the opportunity to share his reward with two others and isolate the other three. Poor Tai was among the latter with Aubry and Cirie, which kind of shocked me given the fact Tai and Brad appear closer than Brad is with Sarah. But what evs?

Troyzan finally got what feels like his first confessional of the season to remind us about his idol before sitting down to his meal with Sarah and Brad. The three then weighed up boot options for the tribal ahead, planning to throw their votes on Aubry and force Tai to play one of his idols and to hand over the other to bully Brad. For safekeeping.

Tai was feeling wistful, having lost his power in the game. Brad however, didn’t appear to care. Tai then showed Troyzan his idol, spooking him. Thankfully the returned villain edit of Brad was quick to inform Troy that he’d be taking Tai’s idol and voting him out like a fool the next night.

Surprising me, Tai approached Aubry for some much needed help in navigating away from Brad’s bullying, showing both of her idols in the process. Before they could come up with much of a plan, Cirie arrived on the scene and assured them that working together was the best option for the three of them … which is the most iconic final three remaining.

Cirie exited post plea, leaving Aubry to comfort a crying idol.

Troyzan told Sarah about Tai’s two idols, Tai told us he couldn’t trust Cirie, Cirie and Aubry knew they had no other option than sticking together and Tai cried again … which obviously took us into tribal where Michaela was quick to deliver some killer facials.

Aubry spoke about the fallout from the previous tribal, quickly pointing to Tai as the rat. Tai tried to defend himself, which annoyed Sarah and Brad. Sarah felt that it was everyone against Tai, while kween Cirie knows that people have made it through worse … and one. Cirie wasn’t feeling confident, while Aubry was keeping the the faith that she’d somehow survive tribal and/or the confusion.

Then it happened – advantagemageddon!

It started with Tai playing an idol on himself, followed by his second one on Aubry. This spooked Sarah into playing he one tribal only immunity idol, forcing Troyzan to throw his idol into the mix … meaning Cirie was eliminated from the game without any votes as the only person left in the game that wasn’t immune.

Fucking kill me. Fucking. Kill me. Fucking. Kill. Me.

Given the fact that she is an icon, she was given a touching exit that honoured her legacy, given a round of applause and a standing ovation from the jury.

Fucking kill me. I am broken – at least Probst made the audience also give her the standing ovation that she deserves.

As you know, this hurts so much more given how important she is to Annelie and my life – getting us clean and mostly sober, and treating us like family. She arrived in Ponderosa and I ran into her arms and broke down worse than her Micronesia final words.

I was gutted. Ruined. And most importantly salty, like the meats included on my Charcucirie Fields Board.

 

 

Fat hour, wine snacks, tapas, party food, hors d’oeuvres – I don’t give a fuck what you fucking call it (sorry, still so angry for the iconic Cirie), a good charcuterie can cure almost anything. But hey, you know how much I love a good piece of meat.

Enjoy!

 

 

Charcucirie Fields Board
Serves: 4-6.

Ingredients
2 chorizos, sliced and fried
sliced hungarian salami
sliced pancetta
sliced pepperoni
pate
chargrilled artichokes
chargrilled capsicums
sundried tomatoes
Sierra Dawn-Hummus
a small wheel of brie
small vintage cheddar
water crackers
French breadstick, thickly sliced

Method
So this is pretty basic … place it all on a board and devour.

Why waste time on cooking, when in the presence of the kween?

 

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Michaela Bradshortcake

Baking, Dessert, Snack, Survivor: Game Changers – Mamanuca Islands, Sweets, TV Recap

Previously – slash a minute ago – on Survivor, it became exceedingly more obvious that Sarah was sliding her way to victory, despite Cirie’s killer display. While everyone was against Brad for the entire episode, Andrea stuck her neck out one time too many and found herself sent to the jury.

We arrived back at camp where Aubry apologised to Brad for being the only person remaining that voted for him last tribal. She then acknowledged the elephant in the room, that if you align with her you end up voted out … or near death. She then broke down about having had such a rollercoaster day what with winning immunity and being blindsided, before winning Tai’s affection back and making Cirie wary of Tai’s social game.

Probst quickly returned for the second immunity challenge of the episode, the Darrah Johnson-Shane Powers memorial pour-water-in-the-hole-to-float-a-key-high-enough-to-retrieve-it. Don’t blame me for the title, I was experiencing PTSD by proxy for Cirie.

Michaela got out to a quick lead, followed closely by Troyzan, Aubry and Brad, who made quick work using the key to unlock their puzzle pieces. Given how confusing the puzzle was, Sarah, Tai and Cirie all caught up before Brad found a hole that he couldn’t fill. Michaela thought she had it, which she didn’t before kicking the puzzle … giving enough time for Brad to fill that hole and snatch immunity.

Brad then celebrated and / or through a tantrum, almost channelling Mr. This-Is-My-Island, Troyzan.

Back at camp the Troyzan and Tai were feeling uncomfortable, since the target was immune … despite both of them being in possession of an idol, or two if you’re Tai. Tai approached Aubry about needing to make some moves if they are going to make it to the end, both agreeing that Sarah is currently the one to beat.

Aubry then told Cirie, who went straight back to Sarah who refused to believe that Aubry was telling the truth. Wanting to solidify her loyalty, Sarah decided to give up the extra vote advantage to Cirie. Cirie, being the crafty kween that she is, debating the merits on hanging on to it, or playing it despite the fact Sarah didn’t want to, to protect Sarah from herself and Tai.

Cirie then clued Michaela in on what was happening, with both of them agreeing that Cirie needed to use Sarah’s vote steal to steal Sarah’s own vote to take out Tai … by lulling him into a false sense of security to not play an idol by saying she is doing it to save him. This is some next level inception bullshit right here and if she pulls it off, she is the first in line to Sandra’s throne in the line of procession.

Giving future players a masterclass on how to manipulate people, Cirie pulled Tai aside and played him like a fiddle. I mean, the voice quivering, the panic, the concern?! I love Cirie.

We then arrived at tribal council where Sarah spoke about the mad scrambling that occurred post challenge. Cirie and Brad agreed that everyone was lying to someone and that they need to cut through that, to which Michaela disagreed. Tai then acknowledged that he always gives people the benefit of the doubt and that it could lead to his downfall.

Troyzan sounded like he’s been hurt one too many times in the game, which after being schooled by Kim I assume he has. Michaela then brought up the ‘we’ again before we headed off to vote … but wait, Cirie pulled out the vote steal! Sadly for her, she didn’t read the fine print saying that it could not be transferred.

She was then chastised by Probst and Sarah, for outing the fact she was going to make a huge move but actually couldn’t. And as has become the tradition of Game Changers, Sarah then whispered something in Tai’s ear, before Cirie pulled Sarah aside to tell her she was trying to use it to save her, which Michaela jumped up to agree with. Troyzan then tried to eavesdrop, earning the wrath of Michaela who did not have time for his shit.

Aubry then joined the fray and things started to calm down and everyone returned to their seats … until Sarah got back up to  talk to Tai, with Cirie whispering in the other ear. Cirie then went to Michaela, while Tai went back to talking to Sarah … before the latter decided to just use the advantage, take Tai’s vote and get this over with.

Despite snatching Tai’s vote, Sarah didn’t join Aubry and Michaela in voting out Tai, instead joining Brad and Troyzan to blindside Michaela. While it wasn’t as exciting as her previous exit, the tribal build up was even more exciting and she ended with you do you, boo … which is amazing.

Make no mistake, Michaela is a total sass queen … but she was feeling a little bit salty, having been booted from Survivor twice in the space of a few months. That being said, it is hard to stay salty when you fill up on my Michaela Bradshortcake!

 

 

I know that the doll/TV show firmly pushes for the strawberry version of these delights, I have a strong aversion to the feel of them on my tongue and therefore avoid them at most costs. I mean, I’ll eat them but they are not my first through fifth choice.

Plus, how do you go wrong with apple, walnut and cinnamon? Exactly, you can’t – enjoy!

 

 

Michaela Bradshortcake
Serves: 8.

Ingredients
3-4 apples, cored and finely diced
juice of a lemon
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup raw caster sugar
2 cups flour
1 tbsp baking powder
kosher salt
85g cold unsalted butter
1 ½ cup double cream
½ cup walnuts, toasted and roughly chopped
1 egg

Method
Combine the apples, lemon juice, cinnamon and ¼ cup raw caster sugar to combine. Cover and allow to steep for an hour or so.

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Combine the flour, remaining sugar, baking powder and a pinch of salt in a large bowl. Using your fingertips, rub the butter through the flour mixture until it resembles wet sand. Add 1 cup cream and walnuts, and stir with a fork until it just starts to come together.

Form the dough into large lime-sized balls and press to flatten on a lined baking tray, repeating the process until done.

Whisk the egg, brush each biscuit/scone and bake until golden brown, or about 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and allow to cool for half an hour.

When ready to serve, whip the remaining cream in a bowl until soft peaks form. Half the biscuit and top with some apple and cream. Close the biscuit … and because I really like to load up on the toppings, add some more apple, cream and a pinch of cinnamon.

Then devour, obviously.

 

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Andrea Gumboehlke

Main, Poultry, Survivor: Game Changers – Mamanuca Islands, TV Recap

Previously on Survivor, Officer Sarah shared information of her vote steal advantage with kween Cirie, winning her and I over. Wanting in on the action Sierra then shared information about the legacy advantage with Sarah, which backfired as Sarah targeted her to get a hold of the advantage – successfully blindsiding Sierra and securing the advantage for herself over Sierra’s closest ally Brad.

Maku Maku returned to camp where Aubry, Andrea, Cirie and Michaela were shocked about why Sarah pretended to be shocked about Sierra getting the boot. This made Andrea nervous and immediately want to target her, on the flipside Cirie was keen to keep her on side and take her to the end as a goat.

The next day Sarah then explained how the legacy advantage worked, none the wiser that we already know about said advantage from Jessica and my wet-dream Kengel last season. Her reenactment of her shocked face was on point though, before gloating about her total of two advantages. Which she plans to use to get rid of Andrea ASAP.

Given that it is a double boot, Probst jumped straight into the action for the first immunity challenge of the episode – the classic house of cards challenge … though this time it was on a balancing table.

Aubry got out to an early lead after finally joining the season, casually chatting about her boyfriend (the insufferable) Cochran. Michaela and Andrea caught up, before quickly dropping out. Brad dropped his stack, as did Cirie and Sarah, while Aubry continued to dominate with a slow and steady wins the race mentality. Michaela and Troyzan caught up, then dropped … seriously this is boring commentary, no? Despite needing to take cards off to get enough height, Aubry took out the challenge – and almost Probst with that hug – breaking the time record by over ten minutes.

The tribe returned to camp, mystified by Aubry’s mad skillz and probably wondering why she was allowed to enter the game on day 33. Cirie and her mob got together to lock in the vote against Brad. Proving to still be as tone deaf as always, Michaela went to find Brad and direct him to stop looking for an idol and to instead go fishing.

Yeah he took it as a threat and it was, but Monica would totally go fish for everyone as she is such a nice, neat lady.

Andrea tried to get Aubry and Cirie to turn on Sarah as the biggest threat over the boys, which backfired as Cirie went to Sarah and floated the idea of getting rid of Andrea instead of Brad.

With that little bit of confusion, we arrived at tribal where Aubry spoke about the ‘we’ being a bit more solid these days, to which Sarah agreed that if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. On the flipside, Troyzan argued that given he has zero options (or chance at winning) – sorry Kass, he took your Spencer-appointed title – if anyone flipped to him, they’d have the most loyal ally ever. Forever, BFFs.

While Aubry agreed, she noted that with eight people left there is still a lot that could happen. Cirie and Andrea spoke about the lack of pre-tribal scrambling … which I assumed was just cut because of the double boot. Brad agreed that he didn’t scramble with Andrea, figuring that since he’s voted against her twice now, she wouldn’t be interested. Sarah then started her jury speech a few tribals too early and reiterated that when she was a juror, she rewarded gameplay and would like the jury to reward her for voting all of them out. Which Aubry countered with the fact you need to make an emotional connection, which is what she lacked in Kaoh Rong and lost her the game.

As they went to vote, Brad gave a last ditch plea for the majority to think about the fact that one of them will go out fifth, inevitably regretting not taking out their alliance earlier. Whether it was Brad’s work or not, Cirie, Sarah and Michaela all flipped to the minority to take out Andrea … blindsiding Aubry and earning Cirie and playful tickle on the way out the door.

Say what you will, girl sure can handle a blindside with grace and a smile.

Given that both Dre Dre and i are beloved members of the media, it is obvious that we’d be the dearest of friends. And so I knew that despite loving the chance to be slaughtered by kween Cirie, she would be sad and in desperate need of a Andrea Gumboehlke.

 

 

Hot and spicy, yet creamy and smooth – this baby has everything you need to be a successful Survivor contestant slash friend.

Enjoy!

While it is obvious … who will join me next?

 

 

Andrea Gumboehlke
Serves: 6-8.

Ingredients
kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp paprika
½ tsp cayenne pepper
1kg boneless chicken thighs
vegetable oil
500g smoked chorizo, cut into thick coins
⅓ cup plain flour
2 onions, diced
4 shallots, thinly sliced
2 celery stalks, thinly sliced
2 green capsicum, diced
6 cloves of garlic, minced
4-6 cups chicken stock
2 bay leaves
4 sprigs fresh thyme, chopped
1 cup okra, thickly sliced
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp hot sauce
1 tsp filé powder

Method
Combine 1 tablespoon of salt with the pepper, paprika and cayenne and toss through the thighs, until coated.

Heat a good lug of oil in a large dutch oven and add the chicken and chorizo, stirring to brown the edges but don’t worry about being too pedantic. Transfer the browned meat to a plate to rest and bring the liquid to the boil.

Add the flour and whisk until it is chocolate coloured, 15 minutes should do. Reduce the heat to low and add the onions, before cooking for ten minutes. Add the shallots, celery, capsicum and garlic, and cook for a further ten minutes.

Whisk in the broth, add the bay leaves, thyme and reserved meat and bring to the boil. When going nuts, reduce heat to low and simmer for about an hour.

Stir in the okra, Worcestershire, hot sauce and filé powder, and cook for a further hour. Remove from the heat, season to taste … and then devour with steamed rice and plenty more hot sauce.

 

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Zekeshuka Smith

Breakfast, Main, Survivor: Game Changers – Mamanuca Islands, TV Recap

Previously on Survivor, Zeke and Andrea continued to feud, Debbie was confident that the power alliance of six would hold strong with Sarah on board … which of course meant it didn’t, with Sarah joining with Aubry and Cirie to mend the previously mentioned feud and blindside my dear Debs.

Back at camp, Brad congratulated the ex-minority on a killer blindside before – shockingly – privately telling us that he and his alliance were now kinda, sorta definitely screwed. Sarah was very quick to take the blame/credit for flipping, hoping the jury would reward her for making a move to better herself.

The new minority then joined together to congratulate each other in hushed tones and received kisses from the kween … which hopefully aren’t mob related, giving how Aubry views her.

Jiffy Pop quickly arrived for the reward challenge where – again, shockingly (which is clearly my descriptor for the recap) – the tribe was split into two teams to compete for an overnight resort and feast reward.

While Michaela got the orange team out to a quick lead in a challenge she dominated last season, the blue team quickly caught Brad up when pulling him up – yes, up – the wall to grab numbered puzzle pieces. Troy caught the orange team up, before Sarah brought the blue back in front … though thankfully for both teams, the physical aspect was completely irrelevant, as they struggled with the word puzzle FOR CLOSE TO AN HOUR.

Thankfully Andrea put us out of our misery and picked up on Jeff’s exceedingly more obvious clues, solving the puzzle and snagging victory for herself, Brad, Sarah, Aubry and Zeke.

At reward the victors quickly snagged themselves a drink and gorged on the feast splayed out on a lazy susan. Is that last part important? No … but they made a point to acknowledge it. Continuing in his tradition from last season, Zeke and Brad started discussing football which immediately made Andrea wary.

Meanwhile the losers back at camp were looking like absolute crap. I mean, no offence … but they truly looked wrecked. Troyzan made a game reappearance and lamented being on the bottom with Tai – which sounds great – neither acknowledging their idols to the other.

The victors returned to camp looking refreshed like the after-shots of a makeover however Aubry too was starting to worry about Zeke and Brad’s bonding. Andrea and Cirie quickly went aside to discuss making a move against Zeke, which Cirie was completely on board with given the fact he knows more about the game than her despite it being her fourth time out.

Cirie then tackled their biggest hurdle and pulled Officer Sarah aside to get rid of Sarah’s closest alliance on the island. Sarah then shared her vote steal advantage with Cirie as a way to throw the target off Zeke … before sharing with us that she is willing to flip back to the other side if it she thought it was better for her.

The next day Zeke was feeling uncomfortable by the eerie calmness of camp before going on a walk with Sarah and outlining how the remainder of the game would play out for them. Potentially proving Cirie’s point, Zeke then told her that he wanted to propose a final five alliance between them, Brad, Troyzan and Michaela … before running straight to the boys to tell them he’s saved them from the next day.

Wanting to help put us out of our misery, Jeff returned for the immunity challenge where they each have to line up blocks on a moving bar set up over a trip obstacle, that will ultimately – hopefully – knock a gong at the end. While everyone got out to a strong start, Brad was the first to drop all of his blocks before Andrea just edged out in front with Sarah and Michaela and snatched individual immunity again.

Back at camp, Andrea was feeling confident enough from her victory to take out Zeke, rather than sticking with the easy option of Sierra. While she could quickly get Cirie on board, they were both concerned about how to convince Sarah it was the best way.

Sierra then appeared as they started to talk about potentially getting her on board to vote for Zeke, which she obviously agreed to before they even finished their sentence. Sarah then dropped by to test their fears and while she wasn’t thrilled about it, she semi-agreed to the plan despite not liking Andrea’s cockiness.

With that, Andrea approached Aubry and Michaela who were thrilled and concerned about the plan respectively. Michaela and Sarah then spoke about their concerns with the plan and confirmed themselves as the swing votes at tribal.

At tribal Sarah confirmed she was the reason Debbie was voted out, resulting in her flipping the bird from the jury box. Tai lamented feeling uneasy for the first time in his two seasons, while Brad and Sierra were concerned about being the newest bottom. Andrea and Michaela spoke about the new majority sticking together, with the latter adding that now isn’t the right time to make a move given how close the numbers were.

There was talk of the heart and relationships, the need to make friends, constantly running the numbers, bottoming and treating people like chess pieces leaving me mildly confused as they headed to vote. Thankfully though it didn’t take long for the confusion to dissipate as the votes rolled in for Zeke and he found himself becoming the fourth member of the jury as Michaela – not Sarah – sobbed from the bench.

As you know, I’ve known Zeke for a couple of years after I began coaching his improv group – hey, when you know Teens and Ames it is your civic duty – so he was so thrilled to see a familiar face in loser lodge – again – after his back-to-back losses.

Thankfully though Zeke is such a positive guy and knows that it is just a game, so we didn’t dwell on his Game Changers experience and instead focused our energy on devouring some Zekeshuka Smith.

 

 

I was thrilled it was Zeke booted – like sad for him, but thrilled for me – because I was actually nursing a huge hangover from fake partying with Debbie and this baby is the perfect hangover cure.

Hot, rich and topped in par-cooked eggs if you are still nursing a headache after this, I don’t know what you should do. Maybs get taken out to pasture – who knows?

Enjoy!

 

 

Zekeshuka Smith
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
olive oil
1 onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 capsicum, diced
1 jalapeno, thinly sliced
2 merguez sausages, sliced
1 tbsp smoked paprika
2 tsp ground cumin
2 x 400g cans crushed tomatoes
salt, pepper and sugar, to season
a handful of baby spinach
8 eggs
a handful of feta cheese, crumbled
Parsley, to sprinkle

Method
Heat a lug of olive oil in a large pan and sweat the onion and garlic for about five minutes. Add the capsicum, jalapeno and sausage and cook for a further five minutes. Add the spices and cook for a minute before adding the tomatoes and a good whack of salt and pepper, and a pinch of sugar. Bring to the boil and reduce heat to low.

Add the spinach and stir to combine before cracking the eggs into the pan, cover and cook for five-ten minutes or until the whites are set and the yolks are perfect. Serve immediately, with feta and parsley crumbled over the top.

Devour with crusty bread.

 

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Ozzy Bucco Lusth

Main, Survivor: Game Changers – Mamanuca Islands, TV Recap

Previously on Survivor – or a minute ago on screen – the tribes merged resulting in Cirie stealthily saving her friend Michaela and the tribe booting the sweetest free-agent, non-consenting angel Hali to become the Queen of Ponderosa … for the second time in her two season career.

The next morning Maku Maku reconvened to discuss the last tribal, where Michaela tried to hide her emotions. Cirie then pulled her aside to reiterate the fact that she saved her and Michaela reiterated that she would always have her back. Seriously, these two are the latest Game Changers couple goals. Could you imagine if Sandra was still here to form the holy trinity of sass?! Consider my shorts completely creamed.

Zeke, Aubry and Cirie then went for a walk to further discuss tribal and talking about how best to take out the opposing alliance, lead by the mob-boss that is Sierra and her puppet Brad. Aubry, bless, then explained that she felt like she was in the middle of said mob-war … but was gladly willing to be the niece to her black, Italian aunt Cirie.

Continuing in the post-merger madness, Zeke and Andrea connected to discuss the best move for them to make next, which somehow lead to Zeke deciding it was in his best interests to get rid of his closest allies Cirie and Andrea, rather than his rivals Sierra and Brad. Sadly this proves why back-to-back seasons can be a curse, considering how doing that exact thing last season with Chris, lead to his downfall. Ugh, anyway …

Concerned about my reaffirmed love affair with Cirie, Probst arrived for the first post-merge reward challenge where they were split into teams to win an extremely erotic spa day, if Probst’s breathy descriptions are anything to go by.

Given that the challenge involved a large swimming portion, victory was a foregone conclusion for Ozzy – despite the best attempts at failure from Tai and Andrea – who got to enjoy the sensual stay with the failures, Debbie, Troyzan and Zeke.

Back at camp, Cirie took me the closest I’ve been to despair since her final words in Micronesia, talking about how she felt like a failure losing the challenge and likened it to not being able to provide for her family. This set off Sierra … and almost allowed her to win me over. Close but no cigar, yet.

Meanwhile on reward, Tai continued in the tradition of Kaôh Rōng contingent, got naked and streaked around his eating tribemates … repeatedly. Dead set, mad dog – just pause to imagine the Kaôh Rōng wrap party with he and Debbie. Glorious.

Zeke, not wanting to just allow Jeff to make it nice for them, pulled Debbie and Tai aside to talk about booting Brad and Sierra … or Cirie. Proving that she actually is pretty good at the game – despite the multiple careers, twerking and mooning – Debbie didn’t buy anything he was selling and vowed to do what was best for her, not him.

Clearly worried about my reaction to Tai’s nude scene, Probst returned for the second individual immunity challenge – a Survivor classic / one of Ozzy’s best – where they all have to hold on tight to a big, thick pole. Aka er’ry weekend, amirite.

Cirie, Brad, Aubry, Debbie, Zeke, Sierra, Troyzan and Sarah quickly slid all the way down the hard pole, leaving the rest of the tribe to battle it out to snatch Ozzy’s crown. Despite looking as relaxed as Parvati in Heroes vs. Villains, Michaela opted out of the challenge before Andrea threw herself from the top of the pole leaving us with a challenge between the kings of pole, Tai and Ozzy.

For the first time in the history of the challenge, Ozzy fell off giving Tai the victory … and proved once and for all that nobody handles themselves around a pole better than a gay man.

Back at camp, Ozzy was showing off his war wounds before Zeke got to work dismantling his own game and approached Sierra to get rid of Andrea, which she did not trust … at all. Sierra then pulled Cirie aside to drop the Zeke intel, which Cirie took back to Ozzy, Andrea and Sarah.

Debbie and Sierra then relaxed in the hammocks to talk getting rid of Zeke – with a cheeky decoy of Aubry – before Debbie crushed my second Game Changers couple-spiration and suggested booting Ozzy instead, due to his challenge ability.

She then went person-to-person to tell everyone that they were blindsiding Ozzy that night …  surprisingly though, she didn’t tell Ozzy.

After talking about being the post-merge swing vote on again, Sarah arrived at tribal to liken the situation to them all being single people who were just waiting to hook up, arousing the hell out of Tai and Debbie.

Ozzy then low-key threatened the tribe that booting him would mean that they would starve without him, Aubry outlined how much harder this season is … despite the fact no one has almost died this season, compared to the three that almost died in Kaôh Rōng.

Zeke then spoke in a confusing circle about how he needed to convince people that they would beat him at the end, to convince them to keep him in the game, which Tai obviously found to make sense.

Debs reiterated her work in the Air Force auxiliary and how she was confused, before Cirie cryptically spoke about sticking with who she trusts … which obviously lead to voting. Andrea was well pissed at Zeke, Cirie continued Sandra’s tradition from earlier this season and threw a random vote … before Debs flopped out her extra vote AND became the first person in Survivor history to correctly play it, cementing Ozzy’s boot.

Crushing his ex-nemesis kween Cirie in the process.

Now I am about to let you in on a massive, massive secret – that is also a little bit confusing –  so buckle up. I’ve known Ozzy for my entire life … because he is my father and I was actually conceived on a beach that was home to kween Cirie. Yep, my birth name was actually Benjamin Kimmel Lusth – I changed my last name to Judd when marrying Ashley – and I am one of the Ozlets from Micronesia.

That, or I met him during the filming of the Playboy TV’s Foursome (you can Google them yourself because they are way NSFW, even for me) … I genuinely don’t know what timeline is what anymore, thanks to my sloppy adherence to the laws of time travel. Either way, I’ve always called Ozzy daddy.

While he was bummed to once again miss out on the title of Sole Survivor, he completely understood that it was in everyone’s best interests given his reputation. Like me though, he was most heartbroken to see how his boot broke poor Cirie’s heart.

While Hali and Ozzy were busy having a Ponderosa hair off, I headed to the kitchen and got my naked chef on – he explained that Ashley Judd is my cousin and we met on the set of Foursome – to whip him up a Ozzy Bucco Lusth.

 

 

Given that he is my daddy and not my father, I was eager to show Ozzy all of my meat, dripping in sauce and wine and being oh-so appetising.

Enjoy!

 

 

Ozzy Bucco Lusth
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
4 veal osso bucco, obvi with bone
good lug of olive oil
2 carrots, diced
3 celery sticks, diced
2 onions, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
¼ cup plain flour
salt and pepper, to taste
¼ cup tomato paste
2 bay leaves
1 ½ cups white wine
1 cups beef stock
2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes

Method
Heat a lug of oil in a large dutch oven medium heat and brown each side for a minute or two. Reduce heat to low and add the carrot, celery, onion and garlic, and cook for a couple of minutes.

Sprinkle the flour into the pan with a good whack of salt and pepper, tomato paste and bay leaves, stir to coat and cook for a minute or two.

Slowly pour in the wine, stock and tomatoes, stir to combine and cover and cook for three-four hours, or until the meat is falling away from the bone.

Once it is done, serve immediately as a stew or with some mashed potato.

 

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