Thursday, 17 April 2014

Tefal Optigrill - Bacon Wrapped Chicken with Pineapple Pepper and Chilli Salsa

Having recently been sent the Tefal Optigrill I wondered if it really would be as good as they say it is.
But in the short time I've had it I've used it to cook all sorts;  Bacon, Chicken, Burgers, Pork Steaks and Corn on the Cob and every one has turned out perfectly - yep this grill is excellent. 

 The Tefal Optigrill uses sensor technology to measure the weight and thickness of different meats to decide how long it will take to cook them.  For steak, the grill alerts you when the meat is rare, medium and well done.  Fantastic as you can take out a rare steak while leaving the rest to continue cooking.  That said at the time of writing I haven't tried steak but since everything else came out perfectly I have no doubt steak will be just as good.  I did cook homemade bugers and selected 'medium' and we couldn't fault them.

 Tried and Tested:
First up was crispy bacon.  In our opinion bacon (to be used in a sandwich) just isn't worth bothering with unless it's smoked back bacon and cooked till it's proper crispy.  Using the Optigrill, you can choose if you want to remove your bacon at the lightly cooked, well done or crispy stage.  Now resisting the temptation to have a quick look as it cooked we had chosen 'crispy' but we needen't have worried, the bacon turned out proper crispy and just perfect.

 The grill is designed so that excess fat and juices run away from the meat and are caught in a removable container.  Once you’ve finished cooking and the grill is cool, you can also remove the cooking plates for cleaning (they are dishwasher safe) but using just hot sudsy water as I did they clean up brilliantly in next to no time.
 All this is fine and dandy but what happens when you cook chicken breast fillet for example - would it be dry?

The fillets cooked to perfection and certainly wasn't dry - I wrapped chicken fillets in bacon and they were cooked through but still moist.  Pork steaks turned out just right too.
I also cooked corn on the cob in the microwave for 4 minutes on high adding a tablespoon of water.  Removed and poured away the water then left to cool.  Brushed with a little olive oil then onto the Optigrill (using the manual setting) to cook for just a few minutes so you get the char-grill look and heat through. Remove from the grill onto a serving plate, season with sea salt and pepper add a sprinkling of chilli flakes and a knob of butter - delicious.

All in all:
It's easy to clean, dead easy to use and can even cook food from frozen by selecting the correct mode before cooking.  The audible beep altering you to the different cooking stages is really quite loud which is a good thing.  The Tefal Optigrill lived up to all it claims to be and personally I couldn't fault it at all.

 Now for my Bacon Wrapped Chicken with Pineapple Pepper and Chilli Salsa!

Print Recipe

 For the Chicken Marinade - mix together the following:
2 tablespoons of olive oil
 1 fat clove of garlic - peeled and very finely chopped
a few fresh rosemary leaves - very finely chopped
a good pinch of freshly ground black pepper
the zest of a lemon (keep the lemon for later)

 To serve 2 you will need:
2 nice fat skinless chicken breast fillets
4 rashers of smoked streaky bacon
2 small sprigs of rosemary
the juice of half a lemon (the lemon you used to make the marinade will be fine)

   How to do it:
 Rub each chicken fillet with a little of the marinade popping a sprig of rosemary on top - wrap each one with two rashers of streaky bacon to almost cover each fillet.  Rub with the rest of the marinade and cover with cling film while you get on with making the salsa.

  For the Pineapple Pepper and Chilli Salsa:
Top Tip!  Make this as near to serving as you can - mint will go black quite quickly once chopped.

3 rings of pineapple - cut into smallish dice (I used tinned since that's all I had but fresh pineapple would be all the better)
1/4 of a cucumber - sliced into four lenghways - seeds removed and then cut into small dice.
1/2 a green bell pepper - seeds revoved and cut into small dice
1/2 a red bell pepper - seeds revoved and cut into small dice
1 or 2 spring onions - sliced diagonally
1 large mild or medium heat fresh red chilli - top and tailed, seeds removed and very finely chopped

1 and a half teaspoons of fish sauce (nam pla) available from any good supermarket
the zest and juice of 1 lime
2 teaspoons of caster sugar
a couple of fresh mint leaves

In a bowl add the pineapple, cucumber, peppers, spring onion and chilli.
Mix in the fish sauce, lime zest and juice, caster sugar along with 1 tablespoon of pineapple juice either from the can (or whatever comes of dicing a fresh pineapple) and throw in the chopped mint.  Mix well, have a taste and serve straight away.

Cook the chicken on a preheated Tefal Optigrill selecting 'poultry' until the indicater light shines red and alerts you that the chicken is done.  To serve, squeeze over a little lemon juice from the lemon you kept from making the marinade.

If you don't have an Optigrill:  You can cook in a preheated oven 200C/400F of Gas 6 for about 30 to 40 minutes - since all oven vary and the thickeness affects the cooking time I'll leave it to you to decide when your chicken is done.....Or you can take the guess work out and kit your kitchen with a Tefal Optigrill - I'm confident you won't be dissapointed.

For more information and to find out where to buy pop over to the Tefal website.

Many thanks to Tefal for sending me the Optigrill to review.

 Disclaimer:  All thoughts and opinions are my own.  I was not required to write a positive review. 

Monday, 7 April 2014

Sponsored Video - Robinsons #GETSQUASHD

Robinsons SQUASH'D is a new and super concentrated squash drink that comes in a bottle so small and flat it will fit in your pocket or bag. Amazingly each tiny bottle contains enough to make 20 drinks.  Just squeeze into a bottle of water to mix.  I must say I think it’s a marvelous invention, the tiny size makes SQUASH’D fantastic for taking to work or on a day out.
Available in three exciting and rather yummy sounding flavours - choose from Orange and Peach, Apple and Blackcurrant and Summer Fruits.  And there’s more good news, they don’t contain any added sugar.  

You may have already heard about #GETSQUASHD but if you haven’t and you fancy winning a GoPro HERO 3 why not enter the competition? 

All you have to do is pop a Robinsons SQUASH’D into your pocket and show everyone where you #GETSQUASHD to be in with a chance to win.  Pop over to the Robinsons GET SQUASH’D website to see all of the amazing challenges already added and add your own.   
Every week the judges will pick the most stunning, surprising and side-splitting entries and the favourites each week will win a GoPro HERO 3

Have a look at the #GETSQUASHD videos already uploaded – the two footballers performing their fantastic foot skills with their bottle of SQUASH’D is brilliant.  You’ll find The King of Rock meets the King of Squashes!   There’s also a woman who made a HUGE glass (enough to make 20 drinks) by using the whole SQUASH’D in one glass.   One guy even manages to make squash from the top of a fairly high building and yes he actually does fill the glass - or how about the keep fit fanatic who fills a glass whilst doing push ups!  What will you do?

Watch Robinsons #GETSQUASHD challenge in Zero Gravity?
Robinsons challenged Framestore, the Oscar winning VFX team behind Gravity to #GETSQUASHD in Zero Gravity.  Take a look at this video to find out how they got on.

This post is sponsored by Robinsons - all thoughts are my own.

Chopped Salad with Mixed Beans and Lemon Dressing

Chopped salad will add a healthy and colourful side to many dishes and is great for serving alongside BBQ food or any other outdoor eating event.  Or, how about serving with a simple jacket potato?  A chopped salad will provide an easy stress free lunch. 
Of course you can add whatever you want to your salad - sweetcorn, celery, radishes, cooked and diced new potatoes and even leftover cooked chicken.  Just add what you want and leave out what you don't!

Also chopped salads are a great way to (perhaps) get the kids to eat mixed beans and other bits and bobs they might otherwise not want. 
A dressing of some sort is nice but of course it's up to you.

Monday, 31 March 2014

Peshwari Naan - Easy to Make Recipe

 Every good Indian curry dish deserves some nice naan bread for dipping and mopping.  Garlic and Coriander is seriously good, but if I have to choose between the two then Peshwari has to be my favourite. 

Peshwari has a lovely sweet taste to it from the coconut and sultanas.  If you want to you add a few flaked almonds to the top.  So very easy to make and far better than shop bought naan.  
Don't forget you can freeze them once cooked if you have too many.   Just be sure to defrosted them thoroughly before reheating.  Place the naans on kitchen foil and sprinkle with a little water.  I've done it and they turn out fine.  

Saturday, 29 March 2014

Thorntons Marvellously Magnificent Easter Egg - Giveaway

 The lovely people at Thorntons are kindly giving one lucky reader of A Glug of Oil the chance to win one of their 'Marvellously Magnificent' Easter Eggs - a Massive 1kg hollow Milk Chocolate Egg!

Having been sent one to try I must say this is a very impressive Easter egg and once you can bring yourself to break it in order to eat, there's plenty of nice thick chocolate pieces to share with a good few people - or maybe you can just keep it all for yourself?  But 1kg is a serious amount of chocolate!

 Allergy, Intolerance & Recipe Info
     Suitable for vegetarians
     No gluten-containing ingredients
     Alcohol-free recipe
     May contain nuts
     Contains added milk
     Contains added soya
     Free from artificial colour
     Free from artificial flavouring

You can see this and the whole range of beautiful Easter eggs in a price range to suit everyone over at Thorntons.

  Now for the Giveaway and how to Enter:

One lucky reader of this blog will win a Marvellously Magnificent Milk Chocolate Easter Egg (subject to availability) from Thorntons worth £24.99

 Entries must be via the Rafflecopter widget.  Please note the prize can only be sent to the UK mainland only and you must be over 18

 To see a short video on how easy it is to use Rafflecopter click here.
*Inappropriate comments will be deleted and entry/entries to the competition removed.
Also, if you already like/follow please comment via the Rafflecopter widget and let me know to get your entries.
 For information on how to find the URL of your tweet click here - Entries that do not show the URL of the Tweet will be removed.
There is one main way to enter and several ways to get bonus entries, including bonus daily entries.
Competition end time is as shown on the Rafflecopter widget.

Good Luck Everyone! 

Monday, 24 March 2014

Rachel's Organic Greek Style Lemon Yogurt - Review

 If you haven't discovered these already, let me share with you - Rachel’s latest addition to the Greek Style range of Organic Bio-Live Yogurts.  
The new Lemon flavour is in our opinion, totally and utterly delicious.  Having been sent 6 large tubs to try I have to tell you they've gone - yes we seem to have eaten them all. 
Seriously creamy, smooth and very lemony with just the right amount of sweetness.

Is it wrong that I ate a whole tub to myself?!
Rachel's organic range contains the yogurt cultures Lactobacillus acidophilus & Bifidobacterium.
They are suitable for vegetarians too.
Typical values Per 100g
Energy 582kJ/139kcal
Fat 7.5g
of which saturates 4.7g
Carbohydrate 14.8g
of which sugars 14.3g
Protein 3.1g
Salt 0.1g

  I was pleased to see the whole of the packaging is suitable for recycling which is great stuff.  
Available now from Waitrose, Sainsbury’s and Ocado priced at RRP £1.99 for a 450g pot.

Many thanks to Rachel's for sending me some to try.  
Disclaimer:  All thoughts and opinions are my own and I was not required to write a positive review.

Monday, 10 March 2014

ChefAlarm Cooking Thermometer and Timer - Review

  The ChefAlarm from ETI (Electronic Temperature Instruments) is a professional cooking thermometer.  It has a count up and down timer which simultaneously displays the count up and down time.  The current temperature or your food item is displayed and it has high and low alarms which you can set to display the minimum and maximum temperature you want before the alarm sounds.

The timer is fully programmable and you can set the count up/down time to 99 hours, and 59 minutes. 

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Beef with Tomatoes and Sweet Paprika - Slow Cooker Recipe

My cute and dinky slow cooker from Judge Cookware is just 1.5 litres and I've found this size to be perfect as it stops me cooking far too much for two people.  I do tend to get a bit excitable and cook too much food.  You can read my review on the Judge mini slow cooker and find more of my slow cooker recipes here.

About this recipe for Beef and Tomatoes - I meant to use a red peppers, but for some reason I seem to have got side tracked and found myself chopping a carrot instead!  Anyway, I used the carrot and left out the red pepper (since the two together is a bit odd, I think) and it was fine, but when I make it again I will use a bell pepper instead.

Whatever you do please try to use sweet paprika as it will give a far nicer taste.
Of course if you wanted to you could put this in a casserole and pop it into the oven at say 180C/360F for about 3 hours, or until the meat in nice and tender.  The only problem is with the oven it does tend to need checking on more often as you will most probably find you need to turn the oven down at some point.

Thursday, 6 March 2014

Getting up Close and Personal with wagamama's Dishes

The wagamama story began in 1992 when they opened their first restaurant London’s Bloomsbury.  Inspired by traditional Japanese Ramen bars and Asian flavours, wagamama was to offer a new kind of dining experience offering fresh Japanese-inspired food in a friendly, vibrant setting.  Today, wagamama is an award-winning series of restaurants, spanning 17 countries.

The #wayofwagamama is getting up close and personal with their food, showcasing their latest dishes made from fresh ingredients giving a taste of pan-asian inspired cooking.
Check their latest chicken + prawn pad-thai dish:

wagamama's pan-asian inspired cooking covers a ton of different flavours to choose from. The only ingredients that wagamama's chefs use in all of them are freshness, quality and a whole lot of love. That is the way of wagamama.
wagamama want to encourage people to try some of their chefs' favourite dishes – full of flavour and lovingly prepared.
wagamama have always had lesser known dishes on the menu and want to encourage existing fans to be more adventurous and try these dishes, and to make new fans hungry, tempting them to come to wagamama and show them what it's all about!

One lucky reader of this blog will win a £10 voucher to spend at a wagamama restaurant of their choice in the UK.
Entries must be via the Rafflecopter widget.  Please note the prize can only be sent to the UK  only and you must be over 18
To see a short video on how easy it is to use Rafflecopter click here.
*Inappropriate comments will be deleted and entry/entries to the competition removed.
Also, if you already like/follow please comment via the Rafflecopter widget and let me know to get your entries.
For information on how to find the URL of your tweet click here - Entries that do not show the URL of the Tweet will be removed before the winner is picked.
There is one main way to enter and several ways to get bonus entries, including bonus daily entries.
Competition end time is as shown on the Rafflecopter widget.

Good Luck Everyone!

Disclaimer: This is a featured post commissioned by wagamama.

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Aldi - Nice Wine at a Good Price

Now it has to be said I do like a nice glass of wine!  If you're looking for a proper wine review with all the fancy wording as to whether or not a particular wine has hints of damson, chocolatey undertones and all that, then you've landed in the wrong place - I really don't know very much at all about wine at all.  Apart from it either tastes good or it doesn't (to me) is about the limit of my knowledge.  But if you're just looking to discover some good wines at good prices then please read on.

 Recently I was sent four bottles of wine from Aldi to try.  I'll be honest as always, I'd never looked at the wines in Aldi, mainly because I tend to stick to the same couple which are Hardys Stamp of Australia or Banrock Station Shiraz Mataro - another Australian wine.  Although I do like wines from Chile and South Africa too. 

So now you know, I'm only speaking about how I personally found the wines and my opinion is most definitely not one of any real knowledge of wine whatsoever.