This little piggy went to market. No it didn’t. This little piggy got loaded into the back of the ute and was taken camping the other day.
I’ve known a few pigs in my time and some animals as well, but I reckon the friendship I developed with this one on our first outing will be long and mutually rewarding.
Like I’ve said previously, I used to dive head-first into new products before they had truly undergone proper scrutiny. And that’s the scrutiny you, the reader, and others like you tend to put into new things. But I’ve done my fair share of travelling over the years and have had my ear chewed by hundreds of travellers about what’s best and what’s not.
I’ve been watching brief on the Ozpig for some time, as it was tuned on the shoulders of others before me, so it was with some anticipation that I eagerly awaited the arrival of my brand new wood-fired oven and cooker.
The Ozpig is robust, exceptionally well-engineered, and fabulous to cook with. For those cooler nights, it makes for a comfortable heater and has one advantage over a fire on the ground in that you don’t burnt your shins when trying to keep your upper body warm.
But that wasn’t my key reason for getting one. I was more interested in its functionality as a cooker – and it performs exceptionally well on that front.
With the firebox about a quarter full of dried hardwood, I had no trouble stir-frying and, once the fire died down, cooking a curry was a breeze. With the addition of the odd small sticks and twigs, it was enough to keep the curry on tap.
While it might be a bit heavier than other brands on the market, I’m sure it will suit longer-term campers, caravanners, or even on the deck at home.
I chose a few of my old-time favourite Chinese recipes that I know to be honest feeds, so grab your chopsticks and get wokking.
• 600g reef fish fillets cut into chunky cubes
• 1 tsp salt for seasoning
• 2 tbsp vegetable oil
• 1 red onion, sliced
• 1 small knob ginger, finely diced
• 3 bird’s eye chillies, finely diced
• 2 sprigs of curry leaves
• 1 punnet cherry tomatoes, halved
• 400g can coconut cream
• 100ml water (if required)
• 1 tsp ground turmeric
• 1 tsp salt
• 1 tsp sugar
Season fish with a touch of salt.
Heat oil and stir-fry the onions, chilies, curry leaves and ginger over a medium flame.
Add the tomato and cook for about five minutes.
Next add the coconut cream, turmeric and bring to the boil and lower the flame.
Add ½ cup water if too thick.
Add salt and sugar and check the seasoning.
Add the fish pieces and poach in coconut broth until cooked
Garnish with fresh curry leaves and serve with steamed rice.
SWEET AND SOUR PORK
• 1kg pork belly chopped into cubes
• 5cm knob of ginger, grated
• 1 spring onion, minced
• 1 ½ tbsp soy sauce
• 2 tsp sesame oil
• 1 tbsp Chinese cooking wine
• ½ tsp white pepper
• 1 egg, lightly beaten
• Corn flour for coating
• Peanut oil for frying
• ½ red onion, cubed
• ½ red pepper, cubed
• ½ green pepper, cubed
• ¼ pineapple, skinned and cut into chunks
• 3 spring onions, cut into 2cm lengths
For the sauce
• 2 tbsp of cooking oil
• 2 garlic cloves, chopped
• Small knob of ginger, minced
• 2tbsp tomato sauce
• 6 tbsp sugar
• 1 cup white vinegar
• 1 cup Chicken stock
• Dash Chinese cooking wine
• Cornflour solution to thicken
Marinate pork with ginger, spring onion, light soy, sesame oil, Chinese cooking wine, white pepper and beaten egg for around 30 minutes.
Coat pork pieces with corn flour and deep fry in batches until golden and crispy. Drain and set aside.
Saute onion and peppers with a little oil in a very hot wok for a minute, remove and set aside.
For the sauce, heat up two tablespoons of cooking oil and saute garlic and ginger over medium heat until fragrant. Add tomato sauce, sugar, vinegar, stock and Chinese cooking wine, stir well and allow the sauce to come to a boil. Return the sauteed vegetables to the wok together and mix well.
When the sauce returns to the boil, thicken the sauce with a little corn flour solution. Finally return the fried pork to the wok and combine with the other ingredients.
Serve with rice.
BEEF IN BLACK BEAN SAUCE
• 600g of beef rump
• 1 tbs of light soy
• 1 tbs of oyster sauce
• 1 tbs of Chinese cooking wine
• 1 tsp of sesame oil
• Dash of white pepper
• 250g of snow peas, topped and tailed
• ½ an onion, sliced
• ¾ cup of stock
• Cornflour solution
• 4 spring onions, cut into 3cm lengths
• 1 red chilli, sliced
For the sauce
• 4 tbsp of fermented black beans, rinsed and drained
• 4 garlic cloves, chopped
• 5 cm knob of ginger, chopped
• 2 tbsp of oyster sauce
• 2 1/2 tbs of sugar
• 3 tbs of light soy
• 1 tsp of sesame oil
Marinate beef with soy, oyster sauce, sesame oil and cooking wine and white pepper for 30 minutes.
To prepare the sauce, mash black beans with the back of a spoon then add in garlic, ginger and the seasonings.
Meanwhile, brown beef all over with a little oil over medium heat for around 10 minutes
Rest beef for 10 minutes before cutting into thin slices.
Stir fry snow peas on high heat briefly, season with salt and set aside.
Saute sliced onion for 30 seconds then add in the sauce mixture. Cook for a minute before adding the stock.
Thicken the sauce a little with some corn flour solution, when the sauce starts to bubble throw in the spring onions and chili slices.
Return the beef to the pan and mix well.