It is Friday the 13th, a day that strikes fear into the superstitious, but a date that has been looked forward to by many, as the Ballinrobe race season starts tonight.
I worked up there many years ago as a chef, with Brian and Kieran, and one of the most popular meals on sale was the steak baguette.
So I have decided to share a recipe I love, local minute steak cooked the way you like it, topped with caramelised onions, melted red cheddar cheese, crisp rocket leaves, sliced tomato and garlic mayo in a warm baguette. That will get you racing.
2 x one foot long French baguettes
1 garlic clove
4 x 4oz local minute steaks
2 large onions, sliced
Grated red cheddar cheese
Knob of butter
Crispy salad leaves
OK, this is real easy, first heat a splash of oil in a frying pan, add the sliced onions, the butter and season with salt and pepper, turn the heat down to medium and slowly cook the onions until they have browned and softened. Keep an eye on them so that they do not burn, stirring the pan.
Finely chop the garlic and mix with the mayonnaise. Season and fry the steaks to your liking, top with the caramelised onions and the cheese and place under a hot grill to melt.
Toast the baguettes; spread the garlic mayo on the bottom of both baguettes, top with the steak, onions, and melted cheese, top that with the tomato slices and the lettuce and then the baguette top.
Cut each baguette in half and serve, delicious, it is making my taste buds race as I write this, perfect for the Ballinrobe races.
Barbecue chicken drumsticks
Here is another simple and tasty food that you might get at the races, but if you cannot get to Ballinrobe tonight, these are easy to make at home while you watch the racing on TV.
12 medium skinless chicken drumsticks
2 garlic cloves, skinned and crushed
1 inch piece of fresh root ginger, peeled and grated
Finely grated zest of two limes
Juice of the two limes
1 small red chilli, finely chopped
2 tablespoons of clear honey
2 tablespoons of soy sauce
2 tablespoons of tomato puree
½ tablespoons of sesame oil
Simply mix all the ingredients together except for the chicken drumsticks to make a spicy, sticky, marinade. Put the drumsticks into a bowl and cover with the marinade, making sure that they are well coated.
Leave them to marinate in the fridge overnight or for at least five hours. Preheat your oven to 180C, put your marinated chicken onto a baking tray and cook for 20 to 30 minutes or until they are thoroughly cooked and golden brown.
You can play around with this recipe; why not add your own secret ingredient and serve with plain boiled rice.
Tandoori turkey skewers
Just like the chicken drumsticks recipe this is a simple but delicious dish to make at home and enjoy.
2 tsps lemon juice
2 tablespoons of tandoori paste
6 tablespoons of low fat natural yogurt
2 tablespoons of chopped fresh mint
1lb diced lean turkey breast
Turkey breasts are very economical and can be found in most supermarkets, just dice it up and mix with all the other ingredients, and leave to marinate. The longer that it is left in the marinade, the more intense the flavour will be.
Thread the marinated turkey on to skewers and bake in a preheated oven for about 20 minutes, turning halfway and serve with a light salad.
There you have it, two low fat, low calorie recipes. Both are simple to prepare and cook and are really delicious. I hope that you enjoy them.
Both these recipes could also be cooked on a barbecue if you get a good day. If you do get to the races, I hope that you get good weather, good food, and good luck with the betting.
Contact me at [email protected] if you want any advice on any food related questions, and I will do my best to answer it.