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Pizza at Home – Part 3: Barbecue Method

Thin crust New York style vegetarian pizza on the barbecue - theheartoffood.com

One overlooked aspect of making a great pizza at home has to do with the application of heat. Not just with its temperature but also how the heat is applied.

More often than not, the way in which heat is applied to cook your pizza can make or break the final result, regardless of the recipe for your dough or what toppings you use.

The great thing is that you can achieve near restaurant-like quality pizza at home with the use of your humble backyard barbecue.  [click to continue…]


Pizza at Home – Part 2: Dough & Sauce

Recipes for a great thin crust New York Style pizza dough and sauce at Pizza at Home - Part 2: Dough and Sauce on theheartoffood.com

The quest to make a great pizza at home for me has spanned many, many years.

From the early days of toasted bread smeared with tomato ketchup and topped with a slice of processed cheese that would end up looking like melted plastic bound within a thin border of burned toast. The intermediary phase of a round of Lebanese flat bread spread with tomato paste topped with a copious kaleidoscope of ingredients; a cacophony of flavours swamped under a mound of pre-shredded supermarket mozzarella. The artisan phase where you take the time to make your own dough based off the recipe of one of your favourite celebrity chefs, cooking your own pizza sauce, sourcing some buffalo mozzarella and topping the pizza with ingredients like Jamon Serrano and rocket; a meal that leaves you with the feeling like you’ve had a wonderful entree served off a warm, edible plate that’s on par with a frozen pizza base.

During each frustrating phase, the focus had always been on the toppings first and the base and sauce last. It wasn’t until fairly recently that I’d realised that the focus should be the other way around; to find the recipes and processes to make a fantastic pizza base and sauce and a great pizza will follow.

Follow on below to find recipes for a fantastic pizza base and sauce that will serve as the foundation of a great pizza and will forever change your homemade pizza game.

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Recipe for Rosemary Olive Oil Buttermilk Pancakes with Candied Pancetta and Maple Syrup (theheartoffood.com)

Shrove Tuesday, better known by some as Pancake Day following the current trend of appropriating and renaming religious and festive days to make it more accessible and inclusive to the general populous (or just to take the religious curse off it), has come and gone for another year.

I tend not to be the sort to follow the blog-post-for-every-festive-occasion trend. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. It’s just not my thing. However, with all the mouth-water posts of pancakes flooding the social feeds at the time, frustrations boiled over, impulse control went out the window and in a couple of hours I’d gone out to purchase the ingredients, make some pancakes and slapped together the above photo.

So, here’s a quickie post for a recipe for Rosemary and Olive Oil Buttermilk Pancakes with Candied Pancetta and Maple Syrup. They’re surprisingly good given these were whipped together in a craving rage, or crage, fueled impulse. I hope you enjoy this recipe and perhaps I’ll have another recipe post for the next festive occasion, whether it’s the upcoming Irish Pub Day, Fish on Fridays month, Chocolate Egg Day or later in the year for Costume and Candy Day or Turkey Day.

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Pizza at Home – Part 1: Challenges

Pizza at Home - Part 1: Challenges (theheartoffood.com)

Making pizza at home is not difficult. We do it all the time.

There are the cheat pizzas for instance, the faux facsimiles that are improvised with rounds of flat breads loaded with cheese and toppings to make up for a blasé base and a weaksauce weak sauce. We may even take the effort to make the dough and sauce from scratch, shaping the dough by hand or rolling it out nice and thin.

Even with this extra effort, in most cases you’ll still likely end up with a pizza base that lacks soul. A pizza base that’s limp, light and lacking any flavour or stiff, dry and crunchy with a biscuit or cracker like bite to it. A pizza base that serves more as an edible platter for toppings than a foundation of flavour in its own right.

It is possible to make a good pizza at home. One with a thin crispy base, that’s flavourful and has a nice chew to it, similar to the kind you can find at a good pizzeria. However, in order to make pizza like this at home, there are a number of challenges that a home cook needs to understand in order to overcome these issues.

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Sydney Scoop – Five Popular Korean Dishes

Five Popular Korean Dishes and Where to Find Them article on Sydney Scoop

An article that I wrote for Sydney Scoop on five popular Korean dishes and where to find them is now available for your considered perusal on their website.

Narrowing down the article to the five most popular Korean dishes was a little challenging as there are a number of other dishes that I find people tend to order e.g. japchae – a glass noodle dish with sauteed vegetables and chopped meat dressed tossed in a soy and sesame oil dressing. However, I went with my favourite five from this group.

I’m glad to see that Korean food is gaining in popularity and has entered into the mainstream, though there are still many great dishes to uncover that most of the public don’t know about. Perhaps material for another article.

Please feel free to read the article, share it with your friends and let me know down in the comments below what your favourite Korean dishes are and where to find them.


Chicken Asado

A recipe of chicken asado from theheartoffood.com

Filipino food, the cuisine of the people from the Philippines, is something that I’m not all that familiar with having only experienced it a few times. So I was rather excited when the opportunity arose to attend a Filipino-themed potluck dinner party. Not only would I be able to experience more of their cuisine (home cooked no less) but I’d also have the opportunity to learn how to make a Filipino dish to contribute to the party.

The dish I’d brought to the party was Chicken Asado, a stew of chicken and potatoes in sweet, rich and tangy tomato-based sauce. Chicken Asado, much like the people and the country that it’s native to, is a dish that looks Asian but sounds Hispanic.

While Chicken Asado may seem exotic to some, it’s a dish that is about as familiar, as accessible and as delicious as chicken with barbecue sauce.

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Image of a heart-shaped box of chocolate truffles on a cocoa power splattered surface.

If you’ve yet to hear about The Sweet Swap, it’s everything that’s right in this world. It’s about community. It’s about connecting with people and sharing. It’s about anticipation and surprises. It’s about raising some money for charity to do a little good in this world. It’s a Kris Kringle for confections.

It’s about sweets. Lots of sweets. Sweets lovingly prepared by food enthusiasts from around Australia. Sweets that come in all shapes and sizes. From the simple to the sublime. From the classics to the avant garde. No matter what it is, no matter where it comes from, it’s all good.

Read on for a recap of The Sweet Swap experience and a recipe for some amazing dark chocolate salted butterscotch truffles.

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