The Storks of Böbs

The Storks of Böbs
A Very Fine Pair

A teppan-yaki evening


Daughter had arrived had been fed for lunch( Spaghetti Vongole) it was now down to what to have that evening, we had purchased a Teppan-yaki  grill a couple of years ago and use it quite regularly. We dug it out and started making the marinades and dips, slicing the fish, meat and vegetables. Teppan–yaki is a great method of eating (as are most Japanese eating methods and foods).

I had decided on having a miso soup with Udon noodles and dried bonito flakes for starters.

The fish:

Giant wild caught prawns

St Jacobs, marinated in soy and lemon grass

Tuna belly, in a light soy, oyster sauce chilli dressing

Tilapia in a fish sauce

Crab claws

Fresh Oysters (we ate these raw)


A mixture of marinated game, pheasant breast, rabbit filet, hare filet.


Green Asparagus

Spring onions

Sugar snap peapods

Shitake mushrooms

Zucchinis shaved thin

Red paprika cut into strips




Terri-yaki sauce

The great thing about this is that everyone eats at their own pace and as much or as little as one wishes. The plate is heated and a little neutral oil (we used peanut) applied, either drizzled or brushed, the eatables laid on the grill and in a few minutes they are ready to be dunked in a sauce and eaten. Only one cooking utensil needed, wonderful. We had a fantastic evening.

Game Pies 2 ways

Game pies

I had a freezer full of game that required using up, (I am getting more each day) so what better way than game pies. I decided that I would do 2 different types, the normal hotwater crust and a one using pre-cooked game in thick rich gravy.

1.      Short crust pastry game pie!

The game was:

Red deer




Rabbit (remains from the braised rabbit)

First trim and remove the meat from the game, using the carcasses and any trimmings to make a stock. (I would be using this stock quite a bit over the weekend)

Pheasant leg

Pigeon breast

hare saddle

Also I took the cooked meat from the rabbit carcass, this went into a large stock pot along with a large bunch of prepared root vegetable, tied together with a few sage leaves, a couple of sprigs of thyme and rosemary. Add a few leaves of bay and game spices made out of cinnamon bark, allspice berries, pepper corns, juniper berries, cloves and cumin seeds, crushed with some course sea salt.

Add about 50g of pancetta, don’t be miserable and use bacon, it is after all Christmas.

Now top up with chicken stock, bring to the boil, skim and simmer for a couple of hours (or more).

Meanwhile back at the ranch, dice your game into mouth size (I do have a dainty one) pieces, split into 2 piles as half will be used for the short crust pastry game pie and half will be used for the hot water crust pastry game pie!
For the short crust pie you will require:

Short crust pastry (Linda had made a load so I just nicked some of hers)
750g of mixed game

100g of cured speck diced (belly bacon)

1 teaspoon of mixed herbs

2 teaspoons of game spices
3 large mushrooms chopped

2 shallots diced

A bit of leek (about 3 cm) chopped fine

Soften the veg in a little oil (whatever is at hand, this was cornoil), add the speck and allow to sauté for a few minutes but not colour. Mix the speck together with the diced game meat and brown in a pan, when it has coloured a little add the veg speck mixture and allow to simmer for a few minutes, now add a couple of table spoons of flour, stir in and allow to cook for 2-3 minutes. Add stock from your game stock pot stirring all the time.  Lower the heat and lid on go and have a glass of wine (or a whiskey mac as I did)

When ready, stir in the cooked rabbit meat, you should allow the game pie filling to cool before using, an hour on the balcony at this time of the year should be enough.

Roll out the pastry to fit a loose bottomed 24cm dia and 3cm high (I don’t know how much that is, as I told you I nicked it off Linda), fill with the game mixture (fill it well as it will compact and sink a little) put a top on, cut out some pretty leaves, well they looked pretty good to me!, position strategically on the top and give it all an egg wash. Place in a pre-heated oven 180 degrees C for 20minutes and then down to 160 for a further 30ish (keep your eyes on it), it should be golden brown when cooked.

We had it on Tuesday evening along with homemade chips, and my chutney (tut-tut others had brown sauce), boy was that pastry short, I need a pat on the back for pinching that.

2. Hotwater crust game pie.

I had, had the mixed game marinating away overnight in spices and red wine, drain and pat dry, at this point add any other ingredients such as apple cranberries, pistachio nuts.
The stuffing had already been made (it was the one used for the duck).

I had a nice piece of boiled ham about 2mm thick
So for the pastry:

450g of plain flour

1 teaspoon of salt

1 dessertspoon of mixed herbs
2 eggs (save a bit for the egg wash)

150g lard
200ml boiling water

Put the flour, salt and herbs in a bowl .

Dissolve the lard in to the boiling water,

and little by little add to the flour mixture, I cut it in with a knife as it is very hot and this is how my Mam did it! When all of the water/lard is mixed in (you may not need all of it but as the lard will be swimming on top of the water this will be all incorporated into the flour). Now knead the pastry until it is glossy, roll into a ball and place in the refrigerator for about an hour.

Lard and flour a spring form tin, remove ¼ for the top, plonk the ball of pastry into the center (it should still be pliable like putty) and mould it into the tin, it is very pliable and a pleasure to work with.
When the tin is completely lined, (leave a good overhang) cut a circle of boiled ham out, I had gotten the pork butcher at the market to cut me 2mm thick slices, the remainder made an excellent sandwich  only thing missing was Pease pudding, place this in the base.

Next a layer of forced meat stuffing (about 1-1.5 cm)

and then fill the rest with the game, I find it better to over fill as it will sink a little).

Now form the top into a rough circle, egg wash the pastry covered rim and press top onto the rim, cut off excess pastry and seal with fingers, thumb decorate top and egg wash and cut a circular vent hole in the center.

Into the oven at 180degrees for about 1 hour, if the pastry is beginning to colour too much, cover the top with a round of foil or grease proof paper.

Remove from oven and allow it to coo a little, if making a traditional one with jelly, using a funnel pour the gelatin into the vent hole very slowly, allow to set. Some like these pies hot, but I love them cold as part of a buffet type meal, served with mixed pickles, onions, chutney, cheese, a few cold cuts of meat and crusty bread . (Pity about not having any Pease pudding)   

Spaghetti Vongole in a Lobster sauce

Spaghetti Vongole in a lobster cream sauce

You will require

For the lobster stock

The caprice and shell remains of last night’s lobster (failing that get a pot of lobster sauce and a tin of lobster meat, but it’s not half as interesting or taste half as nice)

A few rough chopped root veg and a shallot

1 table spoon olive oil

½ltr of good vegetable stock (marigold)

For the vongole and lobster sauce

1kg of carpet clams (vongole)

A mirepoix of vegetables

1 clove of garlic chopped

Slug of Noilly Prat

Remains (about a glass) of yesterday evenings picpoul

100ml of long life cream

First pick out the meat from the head and legs, this is a slow laborious task but well worth the effort as here is where the sweetest meat lives (set this to one side).

Chop the legs etc. into smaller pieces and fry in a little olive oil

Add the root veg and fry a little, add the stock, the slug of Noilly Prat

and the white wine,

let it simmer, no hurry you want all of the taste out of the shells and veg and into the sauce.

 Strain through a fine sieve. Set aside (you will have too much for this dish but will have a good reserve in your freezer).

Wash the clams under running water and remove any broken ones and foreign matter

Put a large pan of salted water on to boil for the spaghetti.

Soften the mirepoix in a little olive oil, transfer to a large pot, add the stock and bring to the boil

You have now 8 minutes, spaghetti into the boiling water.

Add the clams and about 1/2ltr of the lobster stock, lid on and shake it all about.

When they are open remove from the heat, add 100ml of cream (I never said it was totally healthy) and the lobster meat.

Strain spaghetti into a large bowl (Ikea have some very nice ones) add a slug of olive oil and pepper, pour in the clams and sauce, mix

and eat, well daughter did!!!!

She had arrived and as normal was hungry