Sunday, 17 April 2016

Whisky a Go Go with a Whisky a No Go

Whiskey Club Adventures

First four deliveries
from The Whisky Club
With membership comes privilege and a whisky club offers the chance to imbibe choice, well aged single malts and premium batches of amazing whiskies from around the world. Our first two whiskies sat on a tasty scale of 8-9/10 and are being enjoyed. The first a 12 year old single malt from Glenfarclas is for me the better tipple with a very balanced savoury fire. The 15 year old Glenfiddich had a bit too much fire for me, but a wonderful mouth feel and flavour. I have to admit I would expect nothing less from historic and revered distilleries of Scotland.

The last offer was a French Whiskey and our curiosity was peaked. Nothing could have been further from enjoyable. Rumoured to have up-front notes of citrus and apple, soon joined by salted butter, rich oak and sea breeze the Armorik from Breton  promised much, but I found it to have a heady nose and brief promising fore notes that are rudely dismissed by a metho inferno up into the sinuses that was nothing less than olfactory rape. Oh the horror! What does one do with an undrinkable whiskey? well ... cook with it of course and hope that the metho character is cooked off.

After living with this bottled travesty for a week I gave in and keeping it's nose quality in mind I thought ... beef ...


Beef and Whiskey Pie

beef and whisky pie

1kg chuck steak, cubed
2 chorizti sausage, cubed
1 tbsp of olive oil
3 small brown onions, diced
1/2 cup leek, diced
5 cloves garlic, finely diced
1 large shot whisky
1 tbsp horseradish, grated
1 tspn seeded mustard
1/2 tspn Vegemite
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 cup of water
1/4 cup wholemeal spelt flour
1 batch of wholemeal spelt suet pastry
5 large potatoes, cut into pieces and steamed until tender
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp soured cream
large pinch salt

Fry off the choritzo releasing some of the fat, add the oil and the beef and fry, stirring, until the meat has browned.
Add the onion, leek, garlic, horseradish and mustard and sauté until the onions are translucent.
Add the Vegemite, Worcestershire, water and whisky and stir, cover and lower the temperature and simmer gently until the meat is tender, at least an hour. Check and stir occasionally to ensure that it doesn't cook dry and catch on the bottom of the pan.
Whilst you wait for the meat to tenderise, mash the potatoes with the butter and soured cream until well creamed.
Roll out the pastry to fit a pie plate, butter the pie plate and gently ease the pastry into place and shape. Place some baking paper on the pastry and fill with baking beans and bake until lightly browned. Remove and allow to cool,
beef and whisky pie
Take the meat mix off the heat and blend in the flour quickly. Return to the heat and cook the flour so that you have a thick gravy. Add some water if it gets too thick. Allow the meat to cook slightly.
Remove the baking beans and paper from your pie case and fill with your meat mixture allowing it to heap up in the middle if you have plenty. Just be careful you don't have more gravy than pie case and have an overflow issue.
Gently add the potato mash on top of the meat also allowing a heaping in the middle and use a fork to rough up the potato surface a bit.
Place your pie in a moderate oven and bake until the potato gets little brown crispy rough bits on top and the pie is heated all the way through.

Slow baked lamb in whisky and tomato relish

Slow Baked Lamb in Whisky and Tomato Relish

1 leg of lamb
3 sprigs rosemary
1 large jigger Whisky
1/2 cup tomato relish
(I had the benefit of a splendid home made relish made by the gorgeous Cherie of Tasmania)
2 pinches Murray River Salt
2 splashes olive oil

Pull half the rosemary off the bottom of each sprig and place the sprigs on a splash of olive oil in a heavy base roasting pan.
Place your leg of lamb on the rosemary and with a sharp pointed knife stab holes into the lamb into which the reserved rosemary leaves are to be inserted. You can add slivers of garlic if you wish.
Pour the Whisky making sure it dribbles into the rosemaried holes.
Pour the relish over the rosemary studded leg and season with salt and the other splash of olive oil.
Cover with a roaster lid or foil to seal in the flavour and moisture.
Place in a preheated low oven, about 150degC, for at least  hours. Remove the lid/foil for the last 1/2 hour.
Allow to rest before carving and serve with baked vegetables and some greens.

Rice Pudding with Whisky Ginger

1 cup short grain rice, rinsed
4 cups milk
1/4 tspn salt
1 vanilla pod, split
4 tbsp brown sugar
1 clove
1 stick cinnamon
10cm2 banana leaf (approx)
2 tbsp butter
1/4 cup crystallised ginger, chopped
1 large jigger whisky
1 cup cream
1/2 tspn brown sugar, extra

Soak the ginger in the whisky and set aside.
Place the rice, milk, salt, vanilla bean, clove, cinnamon, banana leaf and brown sugar in a pan and bring to a simmer stirring often and for 30 minutes or until the rice is soft and creamy.
Stir the butter into the pudding dish into dessert bowls. Drizzle some whisky from the soaked ginger.
Whip the cream with the extra sugar until soft peaks are achieved and dollop unto the pudding.
Top the dessert with whiskey soaked ginger and the whisky syrup.

Whisky Devilled Kidneys

Whiskey devilled kidneys

4 lambs kidneys
1/4 cup milk
3 bacon short cut rashers, finely sliced
1 tbsp olive oil
1 red chilli, finely sliced
2 green onions, sliced
1 tbsp whisky
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
3 tbsp cream
2 tbsp basil finely sliced
pinch salt
freshly ground pepper to taste

Peal any skin off the kidneys then slice off the core. Soak the kidney slices in the milk for at least an hour.
Heat the oil in a heavy based pan and fry the bacon and chilli lightly. Drain the kidneys, slice and fry with the bacon.
When the kidney slices have coloured add the green onion, whiskey and Worcestershire sauce and stir until the sauce begins to bubble off some of the alcohol.
Season and add the basil and cream the stir until the sauce thickens slightly.
Serve with rice