Animals Australia: the voice for animals

Animals Australia: the voice for animals
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Monday, January 30, 2006

A rissole by any other name should taste as good...

Barb over at Woof Nanny and Dog-eared and Underlined mentioned in a comment on a post below about how she enjoyed knowing the different names there are for things in different countres. This got me thinking. Rissoles I thought. Hamburgers in some times and places but in the Land of Oz they always were, and continue to be, rissoles: tasty, cheap, nutritious. ~~~~~~~~~~~ RISSOLES

Put 1kg (2.2lb) of mince (ground meat or hamburger in the US) in a bowl. There are different grades of mince but the best are those labelled Premium or Heart Smart. You will pay more for this quality but the less you pay the more fat and trimmings you get and the less quality. To the mince add: 2 slices of bread (fresh or stale) soaked in water and the water squeezed out so it is squishy and mushy; 2 onions finely diced; fresh or dried herbs of your choice and to your taste (to-day I used fresh marjoram and sage that grows in my garden); garlic to your taste sliced or crushed - I love garlic, so I used four cloves; Worcestershire Sauce (pronounced Woostersheer) and salt (hope you use iodised salt) and freshly ground pepper. The bread and the eggs are used to bind the mixture together so it doesn't break up when it hits the frying pan. Some people use flour instead of bread - but in our household the tradition is to use bread. Squish the mixture together. Then take dollops of the mixture in the palm of your hand and shape. Don't make too flat - looks awful. Don't make too fat - takes a bit of trouble to ensure it is cooked through. There are dreadful jokes in Australia about shearers' cooks who shape rissoles under their armpits! Roll the shapped meat in plain (all-purpose) flour and cook in moderately hot oil (you are using extra-virgin olive oil aren't you?). If your oil is too hot the outside will cook quickly but the inside won't be fully cooked. If you have your oil too cool the oil penetrates the rissole (greasy yuk) and the rissole will be a pale unappetising colour. Golden brown with a lightly crisp outside is what you are aiming for. Having said all that - now you have the general idea you can vary this however you like. Some people add grated carrot. Some use different sauces to flavour such as soy sauce. You can roll the shaped meat in flour, egg and breadcrumbs before frying - now that does add the kilojoules/calories! But the way I have given it to you is how we like it at our place. It is served with mashed (in the US they say riced) potatoes and peas - sometimes those wonderfully mushy peas you have with pies. Some people like barbecue sauce on their rissoles, others favour that great Aussie condiment, tomato sauce (ketchup in the US). If I was to bung it on (that means dress to impress, if you get my meaning) I would do a lovely brown onion gravy (the secret of the gravy is the use of Parisian essence - never use Gravox). Scrumptious! Comfort food! But if you are a vegetarian and turning up your nose at the meat - then substitute your favourite veges or beans for the meat and off you go with the same method.

I'm sure what are called Rissoles in the Land of Oz are not limited to the wide brown land as Australian as we may think and feel they are. Please add your exotic spice to this recipe post by telling us what you do in your country and what you call your Rissoles. Someone might also be able to enlighten the rest of us about where the word "rissole" comes from. Is it a word from some exotic cuisine?

1 comment:

Barb said...

Wow, that's wild! Just the "kg of mince" is different. If I had read that in a recipe, I wouldn't have known what they were talking about. I just printed up a cake recipe last night that's all in grams. I wonder if my local cooking shop has metric measuring cups and spoons? What's 'icing' sugar (granulated or powdered?). What's 'castor' sugar? You might enjoy this site: http://www.aussieinamerica.com/food/nostalgia.htm

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