dinner Archives - the little lioness

dinner

**Warning – Food porn ahead!**

There’s a new Indian restaurant in the next suburb, and my boyfriend decided to spoil me with a meal there last night – The Grand Pavilion, known for their authentic and delicious Indian and Indo-chinese meals on the Central Coast, has just opened a location in Warners Bay.

I suppose I start from the start!

Pappadams  and raita

It took us forever to order – because there are so many options on the menu…. Old favourites and new (to us) twists and variations. All sounding delicious. We didn’t order it, but the $35.90 per head banquet for 2 or more is AMAZING value for entrees, mains (which are all Gluten free btw), sides and desserts. Next time, Gadget, next time.

So we settled on our order, and were presented with complementary poppadoms, along with a mild and spicy mint sauce (raita would be what I called the milk youghurt one) while Bruce went back to the car for our bottle of $7 Aldi Shiraz (amazingly smooth btw) because they are BYO only ($3/head). There is the usual Coke brand and Lassi selection for drinks.

one road shiraz aldi

And then it was onto the entree – The Veg Grilled Platter for 2 – $18.50

the grand pavilion entree veg grilled platter

This impressive creation came out on a sizzling plate, with veges adorning and enhancing it (it you have room – eat the sizzled up capsicum and other veges. Wow!)

Onion Bhaji and tandoori mushroon

First we had the Onion Bhaji and Tandoori Mushroom, which both had a little kick as far as I was concerned! Great texture on the Bhaji, and the mushroom was a different twist for me, with sooo many flavours!

vegetarian seekj kebab  paneer tikka

Next, because they were under the other two, were the Vegetarian Seekh Kebab (the vege sausage thingy) and the Paneer Tikka. Wow, I loved the two of them – the paneer had a nice marinade and was cooked to perfection, and the Kebab was so full or herbs and flavours I nearly fainted with joy.

(and then, we rested, while our mains were prepared)

We chose two meals from the Chef’s special mains, and we were blown away. Both we “mild” heat wise, but the combination of spices and cooking style was enough to have me eating way more than I should.

The Grand Pavilion - Masala Lamb Shanks

The Lamb Shank Masala is, according to the menu – “Lamb shanks cooked int Indian style with special spices until the meat in tender and falling off the bone”. Wow. These were amazing. The meat inside was purple and so soft and melty! I half-heard the owner/chef explain to the table beside me the process they go through cooking these, and yes, worth every cent! – $23.90

masala lamb shank indian danger mouse

(not the classiest way, but omg they were delicious!!!)

Mughlai Chicken

The other dish we selected was the “Mughlai Chicken” – Tr traditional cashew nut, almond based sauce flavoured with cardamom, cloves and bay leaf with a touch of fresh cream. This was also melt in the mouth stuff… My unsophisticated palate likened it to butter chicken but without the tomato and all the damn sugar. but, for sure, this was a milk chicken curry that was actually full of flavour.

mughlai chicken

Oh and there was a hardboiled egg in it!

We also had rice and naan (but of course!) but given my level of stuffed-ness from the entrees I had a little bit of both, not much.

The meal and service were amazing – and the British girl next to us proclaimed it to be the only real Indian food she’s had since moving to Australia. We will have to go there many times again!

The Grand Pavilion
452 The Esplanade
Warners Bay
NSW 2282
(02) 4948 0092

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She Who Rocks CD

(play all the clips on the post. if not now but this week, because these women are AMAZING)


(Love Outside Andromeda should have been on the list)

duck pancake

So, we went down to Sydney for an AWESOME CONCERT fronted by some amazing rock chicks (The Super Jesus and the Baby Animals!) And, since we were in Sydney proper, we HAD to have decent Chinese food (since it’s not really a Newcastle thing).

duck sung choi bao

So, we had a whole duck, firstly in pancake and then in San Choi Bao at Emperor’s Garden BBQ. We were soooo stuffed and happy, but we also managed to finish a delicious Tasmania Pinot Noir with our meal.

pepik pinot noir tasmania

So light and smooth!!!!

So, the concert was awesome, from the warmup til we left.

The warmup act was so cool an all chick four piece punk/rock act called BANDINTEXAS. I wanted to jump on the drummer and take her home.

And the rest of the night was awesome. Rocking out to Sarah McLeod and The Superjesus? Was it 1998 again? I was in HEAVEN!!!

So, I seem to have a spare cope of the She Who Rocks compilation album, which by the way, is a charity thingy that give $1 to Cervical Cancer research if you opt to buy it?

TRACKLIST!!!!!!
Hanging On The Telephone – Blondie
Devil Gate Drive – Suzie Quatro
Hit Me With Your Best Shot – Pat Benatar
When I Grow Up – Garbage
Barracuda – Heart
Early Warning – Baby Animals
Malibu – Hole
Joey – Concrete Blonde
What’s Up? – 4 Non Blondes
Weak – Skunk Anansie
Kids In America – Kim Wilde
You Are Beautiful – Dallas Frasca
Black Velvet – Alannah Myles
This Is Love – PJ Harvey
Brass In Pocket – Pretenders
Gravity – The Superjesus
The Look – Roxette
Plastic Loveless Letter – Magic Dirt
The Best – Tina Turner

but if you wanna win it, use the widget below and let me know YOUR fave female artist

Australian addresses only, because I’m broke and posting it out myself.


xoxox <3

(I am not at all affiliated with the She Who Rocks tour, I just love the concept and wanna spread the love)

She Who Rocks Album

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jamie oliver woolworths lemon herb chicken

Okay, there’s two reasons that I bought this Lemon and Herb chicken from the Jamie Oliver range at Woolies….
1. It was the day before I get my centrelink payments and I had limited funds
2. I wouldn’t pay a markup normally for something I can easily do myself (put herbs on a chook and shove cut lemon up its butt)
3. (three?) I was on my way home from a fairly intense (as they have been lately – we’re getting towards the end of the block I’ve been allotted so trying to cram some stuff in) psych session and my brain wasn’t working, so doing anything beyond throwing things in the oven was beyond me.

So, a half price, already seasoned chook (though they expect you to put salt on it and a sploosh of olive oil before you throw it in the oven) was perfect. Plus there were spuds and the like at home for a quick roast dinner (yeah, should have had greens, but whatever).

jamie oliver woolworths lemon herb chicken with roast veges

Simple and yummy dinner.

But wait, there’s more!

chicken and vege with honey mustards

Since this dear chook afforded us some leftovers (we ate the breast meat the first night), I stripped it down, got a soup pack from the farmers’ markets at Speers Point Park on Saturday, and made what could maybe be called a honey mustard chicken.

simmering vegetables

For us, it was a little over-sweet, as I think the carrots gave enough sweetness without adding the honey, but warm and delish all the same!

chicken and vege honey mustard

I served it with a pouch of quinoa and rice for added roughage. When I cleaned up Mum’s pantry on Mothers’ day, there were a number of these to slowly work through. Think I’m doing a good job at it!

rice and quinoa

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I received the Orgran products as samples


So…. I got a couple of Gluten Free pastas to try from Orgran just in time for the wintery weather!

Gluten free goodies from orgran

Wanna see??

First up, is what I call “Chicken Pie Pasta”.

My dear Bruce makes a wonderful chicken, mushroom and leek pie, so I co-opted the ingredients for a hearty pasta.

chicken pie pasta

You need (for 4 serves):
Pack of Orgran Italian Style gluten free spaghetti
Olive oil
1 onion, diced
A leek, washed and sliced
Dessert spoon minced garlic
3 handfuls button mushrooms, quartered
5 pieces shortcut bacon, roughly diced (ensure yours is gluten free if you need it so – they usually are now, but just check!)
1 piece chicken breast – cubed
About the same of “Italian Herbs” or Thyme (both to taste, of course)
1 cup of chicken stock (not pictured)
Tablespoon sour cream
2 Tablespoons cream
Salt and pepper to taste

To do:

  1. Boil up the pasta in a separate saucepan as per packet instructions. Drain and set aside.
  2. Heat a sploosh of olive oil in a pan. We’re using classic and not extra virgin olive oil here because, I’m told, extra virgin olive oil burns too early in the heating process and should be reserved for splooshing on salads and dipping a delicious bread in. Add diced onion, sliced leek, garlic and saute til soft. Season with a little salt and pepper.
  3. Add the mushrooms and fry over medium heat, let them shrink up a little.
  4. Throw in the diced bacon, and cook
  5. Remove everything from pan, add a little extra oil if needed, and cook up the chicken. Stir through herbs.
  6. Add back in the leek/bacon/mushroom mix. Add in stock. Simmer on low-medium until there’s a lot less liquid.
  7. When reduced, stir through the creams.Ruturn to heat for about 5 minutes, then stir through cooked pasta and serve. Season with pepper and salt to taste, and there’s always the option of parmesan, but I think this is rich enough as is!

orgran pasta

IMG_20150429_191421089

And then there was my own creation… Using mushroom and tomatoes as the base with chili for added kick to the buckwheat spirals

buckwheat

You need:
Olive oil
1 brown onion, diced
Tablespoon garlic
Tablespoon Gourmet Garden Italian Herbs or similar
300g button mushrooms, quartered
5 pieces shortcut bacon
2 tins diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons Fountain gluten free hot chili sauce for a bit of tickle
a bag of baby spinach
250g Orgran gluten free buckwheat spirals
Nimbin Natural Parmesan cheese, to serve :)

To do:

  1. Heat some oil in a pan on about 3/4 heat. Add onion and garlic, and saute til the onion softens.
  2. Chuck in the mushrooms and bacon and cook these through
  3. Put in the tomatoes, herbs and chili sauce. Simmer for as long as you like – at least 10 mins. Add in some water or chicken/vegetable stock if you wanna leave it going longer. It definitely won’t hurt!
  4. Cook up the pasta as per the instructions on the packet. Drain and plate up.
  5. Stir the baby spinach through the sauce mixture, allow the spinach to wilt a little
  6. Serve it with the pasta, and top with shaved parmesan.
  7. Enjoy with red wine.

mushroom heb bacon

tomato

IMG_20150504_185719825

I have to say that Gluten Free Pasta is getting better and better with time, and while you still need to keep an eye on it, this Orgran pasta doesn’t go gluggy the second you over-cook it! Definitely one for the pantry!

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New book! By @HelenRazer and @BernardKeene who i saw talk tonight with the lovely @narrante!
New book! By @HelenRazer and @BernardKeene who i saw talk tonight with the lovely @narrante!

So, I was meant to head along to the talk with Helen Razer and Bernard Keane about their new book – A Short History of Stupid with my dear friend from the high schoo days, Bronwyn. Unfortunately Bron was sick, so I asked my dear speechie cum librarian friend Alana to come along. She’d just moved to Sydney, was looking to do local things, and I MISSED her, since it was 8 years since we’d last had contact!!

mikey robbons helen razer bernard keane

So I went to the talk. First time I’d seen Mikey Robbins talk since is pissed-as emmcee ing at the Atheist Convention a few years ago. He was WAAAYYYY more sober for this….. but still a little tipsy!!!

Awesome talk – yes the world is going to hell in a fucking Louis Vuitton handbasket – but WE ARE THE MEDIA.

we  are  the  media

And so, we went for cider and vegetarian delights at Badde Manors

haloumi sammich
Amazing… there was haloumi!

badde manors

hot cider with cloves

Warming, delightful, and Amanda Palmer

purple tights
With awesome tights!

and Sushi train at Tomodachi (“friend”) beforehand!

tuna

salmon

egg

sushi

Thank you Helen!!!

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Beef Chow Mein with Fountain “Good Choices” Sauces

April 14, 2015

This post is for Product Talk by Nuffnang There’s nothing like a meat pie with tomato sauce. And I’m always happy to try new sauces on my pies and in my dishes, so when it was suggested I try the new Good Choice sauce range from Fountain, I was more than keen. Products with no […]

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Apple Marinated Pork Chops with Garden Vegetable & Quinoa Tilda Rice

February 8, 2015

There is a Mumma possum and a bub sitting on the shelf in the carport. Right outside my bedroom door. I think it got too hot for them in my roof today, so they wandered out for a bit of breeze. We gave them water, they eat the oranges off our tree, and I think […]

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Some yummy HelloFresh Meals

December 8, 2014

I kinda accidentally got a HelloFresh order this week. But it was yum, and paid for with my paypal balance, so no harm done! Panfried Gnocchi with Mushroom & Thyme 50 cent juicer from Vinnie’s at Laurieton! Take Me To Thailand Larb Ikea Salad Spinner, via Ebay. Lightning Fast Steak with Sweet Potato Wedges Remember […]

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Marinating pork…. what do you use?

December 7, 2014

Picked up some free range pork scotch fillets at Woolies, and wondered what to marinate them in. I ended up deciding on a garlic, ginger, sweet chili and soy sauce mix. It turned out wonderfully with the roast veg and a bed of baby spinach. What would you use? And this new Yellow Tail “Big […]

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Spring Lamb, Chickpea Tagine and a Chicken delight!

September 27, 2014

This week’s HelloFresh delights! Amazing Lamb…. With tangy potatoes and broccolini salad. The vego meal – Chickpea tagine with couscous and Lebanese bread Marinated chicken with Asian greens… All so yum and light! (though waaay too much per serve in the chickpeas!) Use my code R3CDUQ to get $30 off your first box at HelloFresh […]

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Silverside with White Onion Sauce and Honey Carrots

September 7, 2014

Started the silverside a little too late, so had to boil it rather than pop it into the slow cooker. This time, used malt vinegar rather than apple cider. Carrots were baked for about an hour – peeled and covered with honey, olive oil and some garlic and home grown rosemary. Mash with butter and […]

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