Tamale Cyrus

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Full disclosure, I forgot corn husks. Then I drowned the dough. Then I burnt my hands. Then I opted for a deconstructed ta … I’m getting ahead of myself.

Let me take you back – picture it, my kitchen, yesterday. My girl, staunch Vegemite fan Miley Cyrus, dropped by after requesting a catch-up.

Having played such an integral role in Annelie’s departure, Miles and I have been in close contact most of the year however she has been too scared to get too close to the scene of the crime. Thankfully Hiddleswift are in town stealing the limelight and showing their true colours, so Miles thought it was time to catch-up and make sure Annelie’s studying-medicine-to-cure-her-ailment was going well.

Miles dropped by after spending the day with Annelie and was disheartened by the fact that her selective amnesia seems here to stay … but was pleased that the silver lining is that she will be a doctor and will hopefully lack enough morals to give us an endless supply of pointless prescriptions and fraudulent medical certificates.

You win some, you lose some I guess.

Either way, we opted out of having a friendly cage fight and instead gabbed about our Hemsworths – he’s Thor? I’m so thor I can barely shi … nevermind – discussed our dear Dolly and reminisced about the wondrous time of our lives that was Hannah Montana (she is unaware I had an affair with Billy Ray while working on the set – don’t tell her).

As I alluded to up front, this week’s meal didn’t go to plan. I wanted something fun, spicy and comforting – not knowing how she’d take Annelie’s continued amnesia – so I went with her fave, my Tamale Cyrus.

Then my forgetfulness – do I also have amnesia – laziness and patience got in the way (read: I bought mince instead of pork butt and forgot corn husks to wrap them), resulting in a deconstructed Tamale Cyrus. But the thing is, I actually loved them!

 

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I mean sure, there is nothing better than wrapping your meat in some warm pillowy dough … but sometimes it is just as satisfying to slap it on top of said dough and slather it in your special sauces.

Enjoy – you know I did!

 

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Tamale Cyrus
Serves: 6.

Ingredients
Meat
vegetable oil
2 onions onion, finely chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
1kg pork mince
¼ cup chili powder
2 tbsp salt
1 tbsp pepper
1 tbsp paprika
1 tbsp smoked paprika
2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp ground cumin
3 cups chicken stock
1 jalapeno pepper, minced (removed the seeds if you don’t like heat)

Corn(flat)bread
5 cups cornmeal
1 ½ tbsp salt
1 tbsp baking powder
200g unsalted butter
cooking broth

Method
Heat a lug of oil over medium heat in a large, deep pot and saute the onions and garlic for a couple of minutes. Add the meat, breaking up with a spoon as you go – if you accidentally buy mince, dems the breaks – and cook until lightly browned.

Add the spices and jalapeno and cook for a minute, to release the flavours. Then, add the stock, crank up the heat and bring to a boil. Once it is getting lively, reduce the heat to low and simmer for about an hour.

Once everything has literally simmered in its juices, remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.

Preheat the oven to 180C.

Once cooled, strain off the liquid from the meat and leave the meat to rest while you cook the bread.

See why real pork would have been better than mince? Nigella once told me to embrace the failures though, so I’m making it work!

Anyway, combine the dry cornbread ingredients in a large bowl. Using your hands, rub through the butter until it resembles wet sand on a terrible beach with mega coarse sand. Once combined, gradually add the stock while stirring until the dough is thick and moist – how good is that word, moist, MOIST – but not wet. Trust your judgement, not mine.

Press the dough into a large baking sheet – like one you’d use for making cookies – until it is a smooth 5mm layer and bake for 10-20 minutes, or until golden and cooked but not to hard. Again, use your judgement – Miley and I were pretty wasted at this point so it may have taken anywhere from 5 minutes to 6 hours – you want it to be soft yet squishy, like a polenta chip.

Once it is what you would deem ready, carve the bread into squares, place one on your plate, top with your meat and then top with another piece of dough. Who doesn’t love their meat in a sandwich?

Then top with guac, sour cream and more chilli sauce if you need it. Or not … but who doesn’t love a special sauce?

Also, sorry – I won’t cook drunk again for a few weeks. Promise.

 

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We’re not in Montana anymore

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner

Way back when, I hopped off the plane at L.A.X. with a dream and my cardigan. Welcome to the land of fame, excess, whoa! Am I gonna fit in?

(Yes – obviously).

Jumped in the cab, there for the first time. Look to my right, and I see the Cyrus clan. This is all so achy-breaky, everybody is so famous. My tummy was turnin’ and I was feelin’ kinda sick.

(I assumed I was pregnant with Billy Ray’s lovechild – dreams).

Turns out it was too much pressure (on my waist – In’n’Out just proves to tempting) and I was nervous we’d fall out. That’s when the taxi man turned on the radio.

And the Jay-Z song was on.

And the Jay-Zucchini Bake came to mind. But the Jay-Zucchini Bake wasn’t on (in the oven).

So I put my hands up, she’s coming along. Miley Cy is flying my way. She asked to visit and I nodded my head like, yeah! And am movin’ my hips to the kitchen, there!

Got my hands up, she’ll probs bring her bong and now I’m gonna be okay (maybe she will trigger Annelie’s memories).

Yeah! It’s a party with Mi-ley-ley!

Yeah! Miley’s gonna party with BJJ!

So … what do I make?

Picture source: Screenshot from Party in the U.S.A film clip.

 

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+.

Japharrell Cake

Baking, Cake, Dessert, Sweets

Full disclosure, I had zero idea why Pharrell was so burnt out and in need of a catch-up. I assumed being a Grammy Award winning, Academy Award nominee was enough to be exhausted?

Turns out, it wasn’t the entire story.

Pha-Pha, as I call him, arrived straight off the plane from LA late last night completely spent after a gruelling season on The Voice. After two hours of him explaining to me that he wasn’t talking about the Australian version and that I needed to put down the knife and relax, he fell into my arms, exhausted and looking for the comfort of a true friend.

I first met Pharrell in the 1700s in the 90s as a founding member of N*E*R*D. Despite being ejected from the band after it was discovered I thought it was a fetish dating site, Pha-Pha took me under his wing as his immortal business protege before I eventually became a muse. Fun fact, the drawing scene from Titanic was inspired by the moment I entered into his … muse-dom?

Needless to say, I’ve played a crucial part in all of Relly’s future successes and have been his go to person. I’m the Yang to his Grey, if that is still a thing – I don’t know, I gave up after Izzie cut the damn LVAD and Snow Patrol became a thing in the mainstream.

Also, is Snow Patrol a band or a barbershop quartet consisting of Mr Plow and the Plow King?

But I’ve digressed.

Rel dropped by after wrapping the US version of The Voice (produced by my dear pal Mark Burnett) where – I shit you not / *spoiler alert* – Curly Sue took the crown. Sadly his contestant, Hannah … Horvath (? – I assume it is a characters of fiction edition) could only snag third, despite a stellar finale performance.

Needless to say, he is a sensitive soul and was taking the loss very hard meaning the only thing that could cure his mood and turn his frown upside down, was my Japharrell Cake.

 

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While Jaffas are the worst coated chocolate treat, this cake is off the hook. Maybe it is the inclusion of blood orange oil – rather than its generic sibling orange oil – but the moist, bitter chocolate cake combined with the tang of the citrus is something to behold. Plus, it melts in your mouth and quite literally, is dripping in ganache (if you’re too lazy to let it set/cool, like I am).

Enjoy!

 

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Japharrell Cake
Serves: 1-12.

Ingredients
200ml blood orange oil
70g valrhona cocoa powder (sifted)
165ml boiling water
2 ½ tsp vanilla extract
200g almond meal
¾ tsp bicarbonate of soda
pinch of salt
265g caster sugar
4 large eggs

Ganache
225g dark chocolate, 70% solids or more
1 cup heavy cream
pinch of salt

Method
Preheat the oven to 170°C and grease a 20cm springform pan with some olive oil and the base with baking paper.

Place the cocoa powder in a small bowl and whisk with the boiling water until smooth. Add in the vanilla extract and leave to cool.

Combine the almond meal, bicarb and salt in a large bowl.

In the large bowl of an electric mixer, combine the sugar, oil and eggs and mix with the paddle attachment on high speed for about 5 minutes. Reduce the speed and pour in the cooled cocoa mixture. When combined, add the almond meal in slowly.

Scrape down the sides, pour the mixture into the pan and bake for 45 minutes or until the cake is set but with a nice moist centre.

Moist – I love that word.

When it is ready, allow to cool on a wire rack for about 10 minutes before removing the sides from the pan. Then leave to cool completely (unless you can’t like me).

While the cake is cooling, start on the ganache by bring the cream to the boil over medium heat. While the cream is getting all hot and bothered, break up the chocolate in a medium bowl.

When the cream is hot, pour it over the chocolate, add a pinch of salt and leave to stand for five minutes.

Five minutes later – and I mean that – whisk the cream and chocolate until combined and smooth. Allow to stand for a further 15 minutes, stirring ocassionally, before pouring over the cake and smoothing it out.

Obviously I didn’t wait for either to cool or set, resulting in the puddle cake … which was still delicious, FYI.

 

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+.

Happy clappy chappy

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner

My oldest and most dearest friend and rumoured vampire Pharrell called last night to ask if he could drop by and rejuvenate after having such a busy few years. Obviously this made me very happy – feel free to clap along – and I agreed instantly.

He’ll come so far, to be fed something blah.

So let’s raise the bar and fill my plate with a star!

He’ll fill up-a his tum, I’ll be up to feed hum.
We’ll be up all night catching-up, I just can’t wait to say sup’?

(But seriously, if you have a better rhyming word for up, i’ma let you finish).

Picture source: Kevin Winter / Getty Images for NARAS.

 

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+.

Spicy TomaJones Sauce

Condiment, Sauce

International sex-bomb, past-TB sufferer and rugged love beast are but a few of the ways to describe our dear friend and saucy ex-lover, Tom Jones.

We first met Sir Tom when he was jonesing for us after we invented the knicker-throw at his gig at the Copacabana in 1968. Infatuated (and clearly driven wild by my man musk), we developed and deep and passionately love affair for the following decades.

It ended after I found out he was also bedding Annelie. We were both able to move past the pain and the hurt with a series of catfights, which led to us collaborating on the hit show Dynasty. It was hella cathartic.

While neither of us has felt able to rekindle that special relationship with Tom, we have grown closer in our mutual disdain for the Cardigans (they burned bridges with Tom, as well as houses).

Tom was in town for the night to work on a spin off for Theme Song Guy and start work on the sequel to What’s new pussycat? tentatively titled, What’s even newer pussycat? He was flying off to have a meat pie with Jessie J on the set of The Voice today, so we quickly whipped him up a batch of our Spicy TomaJones Sauce to take with him.

 

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Like most things, we like to add a kick of heat to our tommy sauce. If for no other reason than Tommy gives a kick to our pants. In a good way.

Enjoy! Hopefully this can start to mend our feud with Jessie J?

 

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Spicy TomaJones Sauce
Makes: 1-2 cups.

Ingredients
2 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, peeled and whole
1 small onion, finely diced
1 tsp chilli flakes
2 tbsp vermouth
2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
1 tsp sea salt flakes
1 tsp muscovado sugar
2-4 sprigs thyme

Method
Heat oil in a large saucepan/deepish frying pan over medium heat and fry off the garlic, onion and chilli flakes for a couple of minutes. Add vermouth and cook off for a minute.

Reduce heat to low and add the tinned tomatoes, salt, sugar and thyme and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until slightly reduced. (Note: trust your gut, not my timings as I’m not the best judge of time or temperature on the stovetop).

Once reduced, remove from heat and leave to cool for about half an hour. Blitz and ready to devour. If you feel the sauce is too runny, return to the heat and reduce further until at your desired consistency.

 

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+.