Gary Mehigan

Gary Mehigan

Hi my Fellow Food Obsessed,
I have finally done it! A website which brings all my projects together in one neat little package. My website will hopefully be a place you will visit regularly for ideas, advise, recipes, tips and information about what I am doing throughout the year. From Masterchef to my books, my restaurants and the wonderful brands I represent including Ariston, Citibank, Masterfoods & Brita Water Filters, and my favourite recipes to cook, places to eat, and anything else I think you might like to hear about.  So sign up to my newsletter, and we will send you updates when there are new things/stuff/food to share. So tell your family & friends, and join my food obsession. Happy Eating. Gary.

Serves 4
PREP 20mins plus chilling
COOK 5mins
 

1/3 cup (50g) plain flour
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup (70g) panko or fine fresh breadcrumbs
200g goat’s cheese
1 tsp honey
1 tsp Dijon mustard
grated rind and juice of 1 lime
50ml extra virgin olive oil
100ml peanut or rice bran oil
1.6kg seedless watermelon, peeled, cut into wedges
1 Lebanese cucumber, thinly sliced
1 cup small watercress sprigs

 

 Tips- I always keep crusts and leftover bits of bread in a container in the freezer. Buzz them in a food processor for super-fresh breadcrumbs.

• Watermelon works well with both salty and sweet flavours. Combine watermelon and a salty cheese, such as fetta, and serve with grilled quail, chicken or fish.

• Goat’s cheese comes in many guises, from soft and fresh to aged, ashed or dry varieties. If you’d prefer not to crumb and fry it, simply slice a nicely aged ashed goat’s cheese to serve with the salad.



1
Place flour, egg and breadcrumbs in separate bowls. Season each with salt and pepper.

2 Cut half of goat’s cheese into 2cm cubes. Dust cubes with flour, dip in egg, then press in breadcrumbs to coat. Transfer to a plate and chill for 30 mins.

3 Meanwhile, whisk honey, mustard, lime rind and juice in a small bowl, then whisk in extra virgin olive oil. Season and set aside.

4 Heat peanut oil in a deep-sided frying pan on medium to 175C, or until a cube of bread sizzles on contact. Cook fritters, turning, for 3 mins, until golden brown and crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel. Season immediately with a pinch of salt.

5 Divide watermelon wedges and cucumber slices between serving bowls. Use fingers to break up remaining goat’s cheese and add to salad. Drizzle with vinaigrette and season to taste. Top with goat’s cheese fritters and watercress sprigs. Serve.

 

 

Serves 4
PREP 25mins
COOK 25mins
 

4 cups (1L) peanut or canola oil
1 small fennel bulb, trimmed, thinly sliced
1 small beetroot, peeled, thinly sliced
3 spring (salad) onions, trimmed, thinly sliced lengthways
1 carrot, thinly sliced diagonally
12 snow peas, trimmed
6 male zucchini flowers, stamens removed
1 bunch sage, leaves only
1 small bunch basil, leaves only
1/2 cup (75g) plain flour

capsicum sauce
1 red capsicum
2 slices white bread, crusts removed, bread cubed
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 small garlic clove, sliced
pinch of smoked paprika
1/3 cup (80ml) extra virgin olive oil

beer batter
1 cup (150g) cornflour
1 cup (150g) self-raising flour
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 eggwhite
320ml beer

 



1
To make capsicum sauce, roast capsicum over a high gas flame, turning, for 7-8 mins, until black and blistered all over. Place in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and cool. Using a small knife, remove seeds and membranes from capsicum, then scrape off skin.

2 Place bread and vinegar in a bowl. Stand for 5 mins to soak. Place capsicum, bread mixture, garlic and paprika in a blender. Season and blend until smooth. With motor running, add oil in a thin, steady stream, until sauce thickens to a mayonnaise consistency. Set aside.

3 To make batter, combine dry ingredients and a pinch of salt in a bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat eggwhite until firm peaks form. Whisk beer into dry ingredients, then fold in eggwhite.

4 Heat oil in a deep-fryer to 180C, or in a large shallow frying pan on medium until a cube of bread sizzles on contact. Dust vegetables and herbs in flour, shaking off any excess. Working in batches, drop vegetables and herbs in batter. Remove from batter, allowing excess to drain off . Deep-fry in batches for 2-3 mins, until light golden and crisp . Drain on paper towel.

5 Spoon capsicum sauce between serving plates. Top with a stack of beer-battered vegetables and herbs, season and serve.

 

 Gary's secrets

• If you don’t have a gas cooktop, cook the capsicum under a hot grill – it won’t have the same smoky flavour, but it still works well. Cut the capsicum into quarters and remove seeds and membranes. Grill skin-side up for 8 minutes, until blackened and blistered.

• The whisked eggwhite in the batter makes these fritters super light but to simplify the recipe, you can omit the whisked eggwhite and the batter will still turn out crisp and delicious.

• Working with hot oil can be dangerous – always concentrate on the job at hand and remember that water can cause hot oil to spit.

• Everything sounds more appetising in Italian. Fritto misto, for example, literally means “mixed fried”. See what I mean?

Serves 4
PREP 35mins
COOK 1hr
 

1 tbsp coriander seeds
2 tsp cumin seeds
4 dried chillies
1 tsp white peppercorns
1 tbsp vegetable oil
400ml can coconut milk
2 1/2 cups (625ml) chicken stock
1/4 cup (60ml) fish sauce
2 tbsp grated palm sugar
1 1/4 cups (250g) split yellow lentils, rinsed
700g jap pumpkin, peeled, seeded, cut into large chunks
400g potatoes, peeled, cut into wedges
200g green beans, trimmed coriander leaves, curry leaves, to serve

Curry paste
1/2 red onion, roughly chopped
1/2 bunch coriander, leaves and roots chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 lemongrass stalk, white part only, chopped
1 tsp ground turmeric
6cm piece ginger, peeled, roughly chopped
2 curry leaves
3 birdseye chillies, roughly chopped
1 tbsp olive oil

Paratha
1 1/2 cups (225g) spelt flour
1/2 cup (125ml) milk
40g butter, melted
1 tbsp nigella seeds
1/4 cup (60ml) vegetable oil 



Tip-This recipe makes 1 cup of curry paste, which is enough for two curries. The leftover curry paste will keep in the fridge for a week or freeze it for up to a month.


To make curry paste, place all ingredients, except oil, in a food processor and process until a smooth paste forms. Transfer to a jar, cover surface with oil and refrigerate until needed.

Dry-roast coriander seeds, cumin seeds, chillies and peppercorns in a non-stick frying pan on high heat for 2 mins, until fragrant. Cool. Using a mortar and pestle or spice grinder, grind spice mixture to a powder.

Heat vegetable oil in a large saucepan on medium. Cook spice mixture, stirring, for 1-2 mins, until fragrant. Add 1/2 cup of curry paste and cook, stirring, for 2-3 mins, until fragrant. Stir in coconut milk until combined. Bring to boil and cook, without stirring, for 4-5 mins, until coconut milk splits slightly.

 Stir in stock, fish sauce and palm sugar until combined. Add lentils and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 mins, until halfway cooked. Add pumpkin and potato and cook for 15 mins, until just tender. Add beans and cook for 5 mins, until beans are bright green and potato and lentils are tender.

5 Meanwhile, to make paratha, place flour and a pinch of salt in a large bowl. Combine milk and melted butter in a jug. Add to dry ingredients and mix until a soft dough forms. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 4-5 mins, until smooth. Divide dough into eight portions, then roll each portion into a ball. Using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll one dough ball into a 2mm-thick oblong shape. Scatter over a few nigella seeds and lightly roll into dough. Repeat with remaining dough and nigella seed 

6 Heat vegetable oil in a large frying pan on medium. Cook paratha in batches for 2 mins, until dough blisters. Turn and cook for another 2 mins, adding more oil if necessary, until paratha is golden brown and crisp.

7 Scatter coriander leaves and curry leaves over curry and serve with paratha.

 

 Gary's secrets

• This curry is quite spicy so if you want to tone it down, drop the dried chillies from the dried spice mixture, or scrape the seeds out of the birdseye chillies before making the curry paste.

• Legumes are a delicious substitute for meat in Indian-style curries and there are lots of different ones to try – other lentil varieties, dried beans, peas and chickpeas will all work well in this curry recipe.

• When buying ginger, look for young rhizomes with taut, light golden skin and a pink tinge. Young ginger doesn’t need peeling and it tastes better than wrinkly older rhizomes, which can be fibrous.

• Nigella seeds, sometimes also called black sesame seeds, are sold at spice shops and Indian food stores.

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Gary Mehigan is represented by Chefsink. For media enquiries please contact Justine May
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