Tuesday, 6 August 2013

The Countdown is on

We started in mid-March and now here we are in August just about to complete our renovation.

On the weekend I  lay some tiles on the bathroom floor to see how they would look.

The painter is now painting & the tiler will lay those tiles next week.

Luckily the 10yo was there inspecting in his matching beanie.

I can not tell you how exciting it is to be so close the the finish line.

Our large family has been cocooned into a very very small house for 6 years.

One bathroom & one toilet IN that bathroom. A challenge to say the least.....

And really up until 18mths ago this was ok- but then the big kids got really big.

Adult size.

Now it is not so easy.

We are all super excited to think that soon we may have trouble finding each other and that we will actually have private spaces- not only that but a CHOICE of spaces.


It has been worth the wait to see this house that I designed just about finished.

Slow Cooked Spiced Pork Belly with Peanut Chilli Sambal:
Who doesn't love a bit of Pork Belly?
It is a rich decadent special occasion type food but sheesh ......sooooo good!
This is really quite easy but requires a LONG time so may be a weekend dish for most.
The Peanut Chilli sambal is a perfect zesty, crunchy accompaniment to the unctuous melt in your mouth pork.
For the Sambal:

  • 3-4 cloves garlic, chopped fine
  • 1 lime- zest & juice
  • 3 red chillies, chopped super fine (de-seed if you are not keen on firey chilli!)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted peanuts , chopped fine
  • 2 tablespoons Palm Sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Fish sauce
  • 2 eschalots
  • the roots of 5-6 fresh coriander plants chopped super fine
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • water if necessary
For the Pork Belly:
  • 1.5kg Organic pork belly (have your butcher score the belly well)
  • 2 tablespoons of Salt & Pepper spice mix (recipe here
  • extra salt


Preheat oven to 120C.

Boil a full kettle of water.

Place belly on a rack in the sink and pour entire contents of kettle over the belly & let drain away.

Dry with paper towel and place rack onto baking tray.

Rub well with Salt & Pepper spice mix & extra salt (not more than a tablespoon) to coat skin well.

Add about 2 cups of water to the baking tray and pop in oven, skin facing UP.

Roast for 8 hours.

You can make the Sambal while the pork belly cooks slowly.

Heat canola oil in a saucepan to medium heat and add the eschalots and garlic.

Cook till soft & fragrant and add the chilli & palm sugar, stirring well till the sugar melts.

Add the coriander roots & peanuts, stir to coat.

Now add the fish sauce & lime juice- adjust if necessary to taste.

Add water if necessary & simmer for 5 minutes.

Set aside to serve with cooked Pork (can be reheated if desired).

Once Pork has been cooking for 8 hours turn up the temp to 220C.

Roast for a further 20 minutes or until crackling is crisp.

Remove and serve with steamed rice, Asian greens & Chilli Peanut Sambal.

Pretty darn excited about seeing my eldest perform this piece as part of a band in a concert hall on Tuesday night.
He plays the drums in it.
It is the theme song from a great old Anime series called Cowboy BeBop.
We love Anime- are you a fan?


  1. So exciting! Do you have floor plans?

  2. Your hous is going to be amazing i am sure ,and it will be great to have some space to call your own,that recipe Yum Thankyou i will make it on a weekend or when i am organised.

  3. House and recipe brilliant

  4. I love sharing that loo with so many lol!!!!

  5. There is so much deliciousness in this post, I don't need any dinner! xx

  6. I'm the eldest of 6 & until I was 16 we lived in a 3 bedroom 1 bathroom 1 living room house. I'm not sure how my mum coped!
    How super dooper excited & proud you must be Ruth. I can't wait to see the finished result xx

  7. I have to thank you for this recipe, your dumpling recipe, your date cake and finally your recent carrot cake. I guess i can dedicate this last long weekend to you. We loved all of these dishes as did our dinner guests. Thank you.

  8. Well if that hasn't gone & made my day!
    How AMAZING!
    Thank you for cooking my food- and for letting me know!
    That makes me incredibly happy.


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