Friday, 23 April 2010


There are likely to be no posts over the next week and a half as I have revision to do for my exams, and then my exams, and then a weekend of relaxation.
After that expect some cool things :)

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Cooking - Easy Enchiladas

Enchiladas are delicious, and slightly better for you than most mexican foods.

Now I know you can buy kits for things like this, but why would you? I assume most of you have a basic spice cupboard and the ability to get fresh veg and meat, so don't bother.

The only special thing you need is tortilla wraps (traditionally corn wraps, but as you'll see below, I am not using these). Now you can buy these from most major supermarkets, however, it seems like more fun to make your own, and if you have the time, go for it, I've be meaning to do it for a while now, however, due to kitchen restraints at this point in time, store bought it is (recipe to make your own here:

So then, if any of you are in the dark at this point, enchiladas are chicken and veg, fried, and rolled in tortillas, placed side by side in a baking tray, smothered in tomato sauce, with cheese on top, and baked to finish them off.

Oh yeah, remember to use free range chicken, though that goes without saying really.

So, an account of how to do it, and I promise it's easy as pie (remember to be tasting all the time and adding more salt and pepper IF needed, only don't lick raw chicken, not a great idea).

1. Chicken and veg: (you can marinade the chicken if you like, up to you, if you choose to, oil, lemon juice, crushed garlic, chilli powder, paprika and a dash of tabasco will do the trick) fry the chicken in bite sized piece until browned, do the same with some peppers, onion and mushrooms (remember that mushrooms don't take long to cook at all, and are better in a dryer pan than soaking in water).

2. Tomato sauce: leaving the fried ingredients to cool, open a tin of tomatoes, add a finely chopped chilli, some crushed garlic, paprika, chill powder, tabasco (preferably the new chipotle variety), salt and pepper, a little ground cumin and some tomato purée. Heat this gently to a simmer and allow to reduce a little, remember to add a little more water if it looks too dry. Taste, and adjust as necessary, we want a little spice and heat, but still some sweetness coming through from the tomato, you can always add heat with some hot sauce, but not take it away as easily!

3. Make: divide the chicken and veg amongst the wraps, roll them up and pop them in the baking tray (which you should rub with a little oil beforehand). Now smother them with the sauce, nice and evenly, then grate a little cheese over the top to give a nice topping.

4. Bake: in the oven at maybe 180C for 20-30 minutes, until the cheese is all golden and delicious looking, bear in mind that everything in the wraps is already cooked and this is just bringing it all together so nothing will be raw if you undercook it.

5. Eat: my favourite part, share the delicious with family friends and loved ones.

Happy cooking guys!
edit: photo not to follow, my camera is out of battery and I didn't bring the charger, bad luck, promise lots of nice pics in future posts.

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Food - Restaurant Review - El Gato Negro

Delicious, authentic food, but with a salty twist.

Staying away from the food itself for a moment, the reception and table service are excellent, with a warm friendly welcome and attentive table staff. The overall decor of the restaurant is simple and pleasant, and the food presentation is exquisite.

The dishes are served in tapas style with cold dishes being brought first, and hot meat dishes towards the end of the meal (also usually starting with any bread dishes), and I find this style of serving a lot more enjoyable than a more rigid, formal setting, making the whole atmosphere of the place a lot more relaxed.

The food on the whole is very good, with authenticity and a creative flare going into every dish on the menu, using some interesting combinations of flavours which work really well together.

Unfortunately this is somewhat hampered in at least 50% of the dishes by that fact that they are over-salted, something which it seems I have become almost used to in restaurants, but Louise picked up on more acutely.

I find this a great shame as the ingredients used are of excellent quality and don't need to be masked with the excessive seasoning, were their natural flavours allowed to surface more in the dishes, it would have been a superb meal instead of just a very good one.

But still, the positive aspects definitely outweigh the overzealous use of sodium, and the restaurant is worth a visit, just don't eat any crisps the day after.

Sunday, 4 April 2010

Movie - Pandorum

I was quite excited about this after having read the synopsis:

"Two astronauts, Bower (Foster) and Payton (Quaid), wake up from suspended animation to find themselves alone, with no memory of who they are, what they are doing, or what has happened to the crew of their 60,000 passenger sleeper ship, the Elysium. They are unable to access the ship's bridge and cannot communicate with any other members of the crew, including the flight team they are supposed to relieve." (

Sounds good no?

So I grabbed a copy of it and have had it sat on my hard drive (which I keep all my movies on for ease of access) for the past several months.

I mean, I wanted to watch it straight away, but movies are always better with other people. I suggested it to Louise who was not overly warm to the idea of watching a horror film (she hates them), I suggested it to Luke and George and no one sounded too excited, so it stayed unwatched until I came home to my parents.

My dad loved the idea, and so 2 nights ago we watched it.

I am kinda glad I've saved it until this point as my parents have a nice TV, which definitely makes horror movies a lot better, and this film deserves good viewing quality.

It starts out with a scene of the ship departing at the start of its journey, but quickly the mood changes and we're taken inside, now I can't really say much more about the plot here without spoiling it.

What I will say, the film is gripping from start to finish, if predictable in places.

There are some scenes that were quite gory and made me cringe a little, but packed out with good fights, truly terrifying monsters, some interesting psychological aspects, and some clever camera work that really keeps you on edge, and the ending really is a surprise.

All in all, an excellent film, and something you could enjoy even if you don't like horror films that much, (evidence of this is that even my sister liked it!) so go ahead and watch it.