30 May 2011

DINNER PARTY, Carl and Lucy

Our good friends Carl and Lucy came by for dinner and I created a few dishes for us to dine on. We had a great evening, enjoying the food and company.


To start:

Prawn canapes with spiced tomato mayonnaise. 
x x x 
Prawn canapes with olive oil, balsamic and cracked black pepper.
x x x
Crudites with roasted red pepper and chilli hummus.


Crispy beef strips, sweet chilli sauce.
x x x
Stir fried vegetables and noodles.
x x x
ChefGary's special hand cut chips.
x x x
Flat breads with garlic and coriander.


Trio of desserts:
Chocolate orange cheesecake, ginger shortbread base.
x x x
Vanilla and cardamom brulee.
x x x
Strawberry and elderflower jelly.

Assorted prawn canapes

Stirfried noodles and vegetables with fresh ginger and soy

Hand cut chips

Crispy sweet chilli beef, noodles, hand cut chips 
Chocolate cheesecake, vanilla brulee, strawberry and elderflower jelly.


I catered for a large wedding this weekend and served a very traditional menu of three courses. I had great pleasure preparing and then serving all the food  for 140 guests and it made all the hard work worthwhile when I had so much brilliant and positive feedback from the guests. I can cater for any numbers from 6 to 200 and always put so much effort and care into my work, which is why I always achieve the best results.


To start

Traditional Prawn cocktail, Maryrose sauce, buttered granary bread.


Roast topside of British beef, served medium.
Crispy roast potatoes, honey roasted parsnips, glazed carrots, steamed savoy cabbage, 
Yorkshire pudding, red wine and rosemary gravy.


Marbled chocolate orange cheesecake, raspberry coulis.

Prawn cocktail

Roast beef, crispy roast potatoes and Yorkshire pudding.
Sliced topside of British Beef

Yorkshire puddings
Marbled chocolate orange cheesecake, raspberry coulis.

23 May 2011


Saute potatoes in butter with smoked garlic and tarragon,
Avocado, cherry tomato and red onion salad, balsamic and olive oil.

We don't eat too much red meat at home but now and again we will indulge in a great bit of British sirloin or ribeye. I get all my meat from Tim Mead meats in North Baddesly, whom I have known for many years. He supplies me with all the meat for my summer functions, BBQs and weddings. Depending on the cut of meat, I enjoy my steak cooked anywhere between blue and medium rare. We enjoyed our steak tonight quite simply with some saute potatoes and a light salad of avocado, tomato and red onion, dressed with virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar. 


7 May 2011


Start off your party with some delicious Canapes

Hot buffets are great for many occasions. I have served them at Birthdays, Christenings, Weddings and also for large groups that just want to celebrate their Lunch or Dinner Party with a professional touch by having ChefGary do the catering. Below are some menus choices for hot buffets that I can cater for. All are suitable for larger parties with a relaxed atmosphere. Depending on choices, they can be served with potato or rice dishes, freshly made bread and salad. I can also design a bespoke menu to suit your specific tastes and requirements.

Hot Main Choices:
From £20 per head  (Minimum 50 persons)

Beef Dishes:
Beef Stroganoff; Tender beef strips, paprika, Dijon mustard, garlic, shallots, tomato and cream sauce.
Chilli Beef: Diced shoulder: Braised with red and green chillies, onions, garlic, cumin, tomatoes and kidney beans.
Beef Bourgignon; Slow braised diced English beef, shallots, diced bacon, red wine gravy.
Beef Madras; Hot Indian curry with chilli, crushed cumin seed, garlic, fresh coriander, 
Beef Randang: Malaysian curry with red chilli, ginger, lemongrass, coriander , coconut milk.

Pork Dishes:
Hungarian Pork Goulash; Free range pork shoulder, slow braised with shallots, peppers, paprika, garlic & tomatoes.
Pork belly casserole, Braised with bacon, chorizo, white beans, onions, garlic, tomatoes and white wine.
Balinese pork curry: Chilli, roasted sesame, turmeric, nutmeg, ginger, chilli, lemongrass, shrimp paste, cashew nuts, lime, coconut.
Slow roasted Jamaican Pork Shoulder, Mixed spice, Scotch bonnet Chillies, Garlic, Coriander, honey,

Lamb Dishes:
Lamb Stew; Slow cooked with onions, swede, carrots, parsnips, herbed dumplings.
Lamb curry: Chilli, coriander, cardamom, cloves, ground almonds, lemon and yoghurt.
Spicy rRed Lamb curry: Red chilli, paprika, garlic, ginger, tomatoes, fresh coriander and yoghurt.
Moroccan Spiced Lamb Tagine: Ground coriander seed, turmeric, garlic, paprika, tomatoes, toasted almonds, fresh coriander.
Lamb, Spinach and Chickpea Curry: Green chilli, cardamom, garlic, ginger, cumin and fresh corander.

Chicken Dishes:

Beer Braised boneless Chicken thighs: Chilli, lime, soy and garlic, spring onion.
Chicken Coq au vin: Tender diced chicken thighs, shallots, garlic, mushroom, red wine gravy.
Chicken Chasseur: Tender breast, shallots, white wine, mushrooms and tarragon.
Green Thai chicken curry; Green chilli, fresh coriander, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, coconut cream.
Sri Lankan Chicken Curry: Toasted spices, chilli, cardamom, ginger, lemon grass, kaffir lime and coconut cream.
Slow Braised Chicken and Chorizo stew: Chickpeas, chilli, paprika, garlic, tomatoes and fresh basil.
Teryaki Chicken: Soy sauce, honey, mirin wine, oriental vegetables.
Mild Yellow Thai Chicken curry: Shallots, garlic, turmeric, coconut milk and kaffir lime.
Red Thai chicken curry: Coconut milk, red chilli, butternut squash and spinach.

Fish/Shell fish Dishes:

Salmon & King Prawns; Cream of tarragon and white wine sauce.
Red Thai Fish curry; White fish and king prawns, red chilli, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, coconut milk.
Sri Lankan Fish curry: Chili,: Fenugreek, curry leaves, coconut milk, garnished with tomato and coriander.
Cambodian King prawn and scallops curry: Tamarind, turmeric, black peppercorns, sliced fresh red chillies, coconut.
King prawn and white fish Thai curry: Tamarind, green chilli, kaffir lime, curry leaf, coconut milk and toasted cashew nuts.
King Prawns and Salmon: Coconut cream, ground spices, lemon, fresh coriander

King Prawn, Monkfish, Cod and Salmon "Pie" Creamd sweet potato topping, parmesan and breadcrumbs, 

Vegetarian Dishes:
Butternut squash and puy lentil curry; Finished with coconut and fresh coriander.
Mushroom and Asparagus; Cream of wholegrain mustard and white wine sauce.
Roasted butternut squash and spinach curry: Red chilli, galangal lemongrass and coconut milk.
Aubergine and tomato curry: Fresh chilli, coriander and cumin seeds, fenugreek, curry leaves.
Sweet potato, chickpea and spinach curry: Toasted spices, green chilli, ginger, coconut milk. .
Curried lentils, spinach and potatoes: Chilli, coriander, shallots, dried spices, garlic, ginger and curry leaf.
Roasted vegetable lasagne: Garlic, peppers, courgettes, aubergines, tomatoes, fresh basil, mozzarella.

1 May 2011


Many of us have already had their first BBQ of the year and are well into the swing of things when it comes to getting ready for the warmer weather. We have had a fantastic April with plenty of sun which always helps to get the feeling of the spring season on its way. I am getting ready to host a lot of BBQ functions for Birthdays, Weddings and other celebration get togethers, so when we were round friends this bank holiday weekend and we decided to have our first BBQ of the year, I thought it would be a great opportunity to get into the BBQ frame of mind . I love cooking outdoors and like to provide something different from the norm when it comes to delivering a BBQ.

For our BBQ menu we went to the local butchers where we were staying near Manchester and picked up a leg of lamb, some chicken legs, pork sausages and some lean minced beef. I went to work in the kitchen to get everything marinating to help tenderise the meat and add extra flavour. I boned the leg of lamb before butterflying and marinating in a BBQ rub from smoked paprika, ground cumin, coriander and dark brown sugar. I separated the chicken legs into drumsticks and thighs and made two different marinades. I also made fresh burgers from the mince, various salsas and salads.


Leg of lamb, Smoked paprika and BBQ marinade,
x x x 
Chicken thighs, Chilli, garlic, ginger, lime and mango,
x x x
Chicken drumsticks, Honey mustard and soy,
x x x
Ground beef burgers, Garlic, chilli, onion and basil,
x x x
British pork sausages, Cracked black pepper,
x x x 
Warmed pitta bread, Moroccan hummus,
x x x 
Chilli and lime salsa, Fresh basil and coriander,
x x x 
Jersey royal potato salad, Lemon and black pepper mayonnaise, spring onions,
x x x 
Tossed salad, Cucumber ribbons, red peppers, celery, stuffed olives, spring onion.

Tomato, pepper, chilli and lime salsa.

Mixed salad.

All the meat on.

Marinated thighs and drumsticks.
BBQ leg of lamb.

BBQ leg of lamb.

We enjoyed the BBQ at the beginning of the evening and had plenty of drinks to wash all the food down. It was great to catch up with friends and a relaxed atmosphere of a BBQ is a fantastic way to do that.

Recipe for my chilli and lime salsa.

200 grams mixed tomatoes, (red cherry, golden baby plum, yellow cherry) diced.
2 spring onions, finely diced.
1/2 red pepper, finely diced.
1/2 green pepper, finely diced.
2 to 4 red chillies, finely diced, seeds removed.
Small bunch of fresh basil and coriander, finely shredded.
2 to 4 tablespoons olive oil.
Juice of 1 to 2 limes.
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar.

1) Simply mix all ingredients together and set aside until ready to use.

ChefGary's Tips:
This salsa works great to add spice to any BBQ meat or fish. Also works great with toasted bruschetta as a great pre-starter or side dish. Add a finely diced whole mango to add a beautiful sweetness and exotic taste to your salsa.

The most common mistake of BBQ cooking is attempting to cook at too high a temperature. 
If using gas, have on the lowest setting and be patient. Don't turn your food over too soon. 
If using charcoal, you should wait at least one hour before you begin cooking.