Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The meal that won me my husband's heart

or that's how we like to joke about it!

This is the first meal I ever made Pete. Before we were even courting.
He was moving house and I'd been brought up to cook a meal for those that were moving and so I did.
It was rather funny though, as I cooked it the exact way I'd been taught, which was with whole peppercorns and you removed them as you ate vs munching on them.
I forgot to give Pete the warning, nearly called him to tell him and thought better of him 'nah, it's obvious, he'll know...'

Oops, he didn't LOL
I still hear about it today, more than 12 years on!!

He then thought I could handle pretty hot and spicy foods - thankfully that didn't come back to bite me before he found out otherwise.

I've since adjusted it and now use ground pepper instead!

This meal remains one of Pete's favourites - I'm just not sure how much of it is because of memories and how much the flavour... I reckon it tastes pretty good too, so it could be both.

Sorry - no exact quantities... it's a casserole!! I was cooking for 4 adults and 3 children last night.

Chicken legs (I prefer to use organic free range) 1-2 per person. I used 10 in the one I cooked last night.
Carrots - lots, I used 7 large last night. Peeled and cut into thick slices
Celery - about 1/2 a celery, in thick slices, approx 1cm
Mushrooms - sliced or quartered... I used about 2 cups
Onions - 2 large, quartered and sliced
Butternut pumpkin - 1/2 a medium one. About 1/2 of this in 1 inch chunks and the rest, about 1/4 of that size so it will fall apart on cooking which will help to thicken the dish.
2 Zucchini, quartered by length then diced to 1cm 'slices'
2 Massel chicken stock cubes  (msg free, trans fat free etc)
2tb lard or coconut oil
Sprinkling of ground black pepper
3 bay leaves (be sure to remove after cooking)
Boiling water/chicken broth or 50/50
To thicken: gravy powder/white flour

Brown the chicken legs in the lard
Add the onions and cook till translucent
Dump all other vegies over the top and spread out
Add stock, pepper and bay leaves
Pour boiling water/chicken broth over the whole casserole till sitting about 2cm under the top vegies.
Mostly cover (I just put a large cookie tray over the top of my baking pan and cook on about 180 for an hour and then 200 for 45mins.
At the temperature change point, remove from oven, poke and stir a little to make sure any dry vegies on top get submerged for the remainder of the cooking time.
Thicken before serving with 50/50 gravy powder and white flour... judge as you go.

Keep it low carb and eat as is or trigger a fat-storing-insulin-release and serve with rice, potatoes or pasta :o)

We keep it low carb ;o)



  1. That's funny! my first meal I cooked for my dh was sweet and sour pork and he ate it politely, he only told me many months later that he didn't like to eat pork for health reasons:)

  2. Look pretty yummy - and the story to go along with it is pretty funny, too! :)

  3. Looks like the story is going to become a family legend - the kids were enthralled when Pete told them at dinner that night LOL