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Party canapes

Caramelised cauliflower and smoked salmon crostini
from Leanne Kitchen's cookbook 'Cauliflower is King'.

Caramelised … how? If you cook cauliflower for long enough in a little oil, its natural sugars will concentrate and become more pronounced, a.k.a. caramelise. Cauli cooked this way develops a sweet nuttiness that’s quite intense and is the perfect foil for salty smoked salmon. It also works with prosciutto, which you could try here instead. Just skip the crème fraîche in that case, and garnish with basil leaves.

Caramelised cauliflower and smoked salmon crostini_sml

Makes about 40 crostini 

1 day-old baguette
Olive oil, for brushing
250 g (9 oz) smoked salmon
Crème fraîche and dill sprigs, to garnish 

800 g (1 lb 12 oz/about 1 small) cauliflower, trimmed 
and cut into 1 cm (½ inch) pieces
60 ml (2 fl oz/¼ cup) extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons whole-egg mayonnaise 

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Place the cauliflower in a baking dish in a single layer, drizzle with the olive oil and toss to coat well.

Cut the baguette into 1 cm (½ inch) thick slices and place on a baking tray in a single layer. Brush lightly with olive oil, then bake for about 15 minutes or until golden and crisp. Cool.Bake for 40 minutes or until deep golden and very tender. Cool to room temperature, then transfer to a food processor with the mayonnaise. Process until the mixture is smooth, then season to taste with salt and pepper.

Spread the crostini thickly with the cauliflower mixture. Tear the salmon into small pieces and divide among the crostini. Spoon a little crème fraîche on to each, then top with a piece of dill. Serve immediately.


Pork skewers (mu ping) with Palm Sugar Glaze and Jaew
from Jennifer Joyce's cookbook 'My Asian Kitchen'

03.11.2017_Spice Alley_Grilled_Thai Coconut Pork Skewers Palm Sugar Glaze_179521 smlSERVES 4

4 garlic cloves
2 tsp white peppercorns, crushed
2 tbsp chopped coriander (cilantro) roots or stems
1 tbsp oyster sauce
2 tbsp fish sauce
1 tbsp soy sauce
500 g (1 lb 2 oz) pork shoulder steaks, excess fat trimmed
2 tbsp palm or soft brown sugar
60 ml (2 fl oz) coconut milk
vegetable oil, for brushing

4 small shallots, sliced in half moons
2 tbsp chopped coriander (cilantro)
60 ml (2 fl oz) fish sauce
75 ml (21/2 fl oz) lime juice
1 tbsp palm sugar
1 tbsp red chilli flakes
sliced baby cucumber, shallots and coriander (cilantro), to serve

If using wooden skewers, soak them for 30 minutes before cooking. To make the marinade, place the garlic, white peppercorns, coriander, oyster, fish and soy sauces in a food processor to blend (alternatively, chop by hand). 

Trim the pork of any e

xcess fat and thinly slice the pork about 5 mm (¼ inch) thick. Place in a shallow baking dish or zip lock bag and pour the marinade over. 

To make the glaze, mix the palm sugar and coconut milk together. Microwave for 1 minute for the sugar to melt or heat in a small saucepan until liquid. Massage it into the flesh, cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or up to overnight. Remove and bring to room temperature before grilling. 

Make the roasted chilli sauce by mixing the ingredients together. 

Thread the pork onto the skewers, pushing the meat close together. Preheat your outdoor grill or a chargrill pan. Brush both sides with oil so the meat doesn’t stick and crack lots of black pepper over. Grill the skewers over indirect or low heat for 10 minutes. Because pork shoulder is marbled, you want the fat to melt out slowly. Once the meat has browned and is almost done, brush the skewers with the coconut palm glaze on one side and then turn over and repeat on the other side. 

Serve the skewers with the roasted chilli sauce, sliced baby cucumbers, shallots and coriander. 

Pork tenderloin can be used in place of the shoulder steaks or if you can’t be bothered to thread the meat onto skewers, you could make an easier version using pork chops or shoulder steaks grilled whole. 


Cauliflower wings and hot sauce
from Celia Brooks' cookbook 'SuperVeg'

Serves 2–4 | Prep 10 MINS | Cook 20 MINS

Cauli HotSauce_HDR_edit_SML

cooking salt
250 g (9 oz) cauliflower florets, about walnut size – 2–3 cm (1 inch) wide
100 g (31/2 oz) cornflakes (opt for a natural, additive-free brand)
sea salt
2 eggs
coconut oil spray or other oil spray

For the hot sauce

1 tablespoon coconut oil or extra virgin olive oil
4 tablespoons tomato ketchup
1/2 tablespoon Sriracha or other hot chilli sauce, or to taste
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar or rice vinegar
1 teaspoon light soy sauce
1 small garlic clove, crushed or 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Add 1–2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds to the cornflake crumbs for extra flavour.

Baking tray, non-stick foil or baking paper and a food processor for whizzing cornflakes (alternatively crush them in a sealed plastic bag).

Bring a pan of well-salted water to the Add the cauliflower and blanch for 1 minute, then remove and rinse under cold water until cool. Drain thoroughly.

Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) and line a baking Whizz the cornflakes in a food processor until they resemble very fine breadcrumbs. Place in a shallow bowl and stir through a good pinch of sea salt.

Beat the eggs in a small bowl. Dip each floret first in cornflakes, then in the egg, then in the cornflakes again until well coated and place on the baking

Spray each piece of cauliflower a few times with Bake for 20 minutes, or until crisp and firm.

Meanwhile, make the hot Combine all the ingredients in a small saucepan and gently bring to the boil, stirring frequently. Take off the heat, taste for seasoning and set aside.

Once the wings are cooked, transfer the hot sauce to a dipping bowl and the wings to a sharing plate. Eat right away.



  • Cauliflower is King by Leanne Kitchen
  • My Asian Kitchen by Jennifer Joyce 
  • SuperVeg by Celia Brooks

Cauliflower is King    My Asian Kitchen Cover    Superveg