Photography by Sydney food photographer Omid
Recipe and styling by Sydney Food stylist Jane Collins
Growing up in our household we had plain dinners and I always wondered where the sauces were on my dinner plate ? We had simple meals and I often missed the deliciousness of mopping up a sauce at the end of a meal with a thick sliced of crusty bread. As I developed a love of cooking and eventually moved into training as a chef , I found that the sauces were the most important part of the meal for me. I was once told by my head chef that the Protein was just the carrier for the sauce. I loved that and I still believe that to this day. Even something as simple as having mayonnaise on a sandwich with a hint of chilli jam will do the trick. Here are a few that have stuck with me both for flavour and ease of cooking.
These are my three go to condiments, they go with almost everything and anything.
Tomato concasee ( front right )
1 kg tomatoes (really ripe ones in season are the best for this sauce )
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 small onion, chopped finely
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
2 sprigs thyme
1 Heat a small saucepan to medium high heat and add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, cook onions for 2 minutes, add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add tomatoes, red wine vinegar and remaining olive oil and thyme leaves. Simmer on low heat for 10-12 minutes till reduced. Season with salt & pepper to taste.
Chilli jam ( back left and right )
Makes approx – 1 litre
Prep time -10 minutes
cooking time- 1 hour 20 minutes
4 large red capsicums, seeds and membrane removed
1 brown onion, roughly chopped
2 small red chillies
½ cup white vinegar
¼ cup malt vinegar
1 ¾ cups white sugar
2 tsp sea salt
1 Place red capsicums, onion and chillies in the bowl of a food processor, process in short bursts till smooth.
2 Place into a medium saucepan over medium high heat with 1 cup water, and both vinegars.
3 Cook for 15-20 minutes, add sugar, sea salt and reduce heat and simmer for an hour, till sauce is thick and syrupy.
sizzle tip– great on chicken , fish and even on a ham sandwich
Peach apple and maple chutney ( front left )
Prep time 15 minutes
Cooking time – 25 minutes
Makes about 2 cups
400g red apples approx 2, chopped
1/4cup low gi cane sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 stick rosemary
500g fresh peaches, chopped
1 lime, juiced
1 Place apples, sugar, maple, star anise and rosemary with 1/4 cup water into a medium saucepan over medium heat simmer for 10-15 minutes till soft .
2 Add peaches reduce heat to low and simmer for another 10 minutes. Cool completely, add lime juice. Cool completely before spooning into sterilised jars.
sizzle tip- serve with roast pork, or chicken.