Have you met Nagi Maehashi from Recipe Tin Eats? Chances are that you haven’t because until a few months ago, I didn’t know anything about her. When I saw that her blog was near the top of the list of the most popular food blogs in Australia on Noodlies.com. I asked around and friends ‘had heard about her’ but nobody I knew had gotten to know her. Who was she and how did she explode on the Australian and worldwide food scene so quickly?
I was determined to find out. I visited her blog and here’s where the huge :eyeroll: comes in. It takes about 4 seconds to know why Recipe Tin Eats is one of the best blogs around – it’s damn good. She’s only been blogging for 8 months but she didn’t fall off the turnip truck into that blog. She’s one smart woman with a tremendous amount of confidence and drive.
Nagi was born in Japan but moved to Australia as a child and grew up a dinky di Aussie. What?? You don’t use the phrase dinky di? It means the real thing, true blue, etc., and that describes Nagi really well.
She left a high paying corporate job to follow her dream of making a living through her food blog and other projects. She’s given herself a period of time to achieve that goal but she’s well on her way.
Once I began following new posts on her blog, I found her on Facebook and then I found a Facebook group she started called Food Bloggers Central. It’s a closed group for food bloggers but everyone is welcome. She wants it closed so everyone can feel free to bitch without the world reading it. (did I just say that?) In the Facebook group she offers suggestions on monetising food blogs, taking better photos, dealing with PR folks and other really important aspects of running a good blog.
The food she shares with us on her blog is real. No food from packets, no trendy food fashion and no food that looks outstanding in a photo – but tastes crap will find a spot on her blog. What you WILL find are recipes with outstanding photographs of delicious food. Food like this amazing cheesy garlic crack bread.
Nagi is the sort of person who sees something she thinks might interest you or help you in promoting your blog or a design tweak and she’ll send you a note. It might be a typo you made or a plugin that would help or a place to promote your blog. The last thing she told me about was recipechart.com.
Then there’s the no washing up, ham, egg and cheese bowl that’s brilliant and perfect to give to kids on a weekend – kids of all ages. Can you imagine how nice this would be for breakfast with a crowd of people?
While Nagi is a woman on the rise, she still has her feet firmly planted on the ground. She’s close to her family, sees her friends often and lives with the love of her life, Dozer. Look at those eyes! I’d give him one of those appetisers
She’s traveled all over the world for business and fun and that’s increased her delight in food from everywhere. Nagi’s recipes are easy to make using everyday ingredients. If you’re feeding a family, Nagi’s recipes don’t cost the Earth to make and everyone in the family will enjoy the food.
Nagi has kindly allowed me to share one of her favourite recipes with our readers and it’s one of my faves too. I know you and your family will love it and if there’s any left, even the dog will wag its tail. (it received the Charlie wag of approval)
- 4 lbs / 2kg good corned beef
- 4 tbsp fresh coarsely ground black pepper
- 2 tbsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp mustard powder
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp onion powder
- 2 tbsp liquid smoke (optional)
- Submerge the corned beef in water in a large pot. Let it desalinate in the refrigerator for 24 to 48 hours, changing the water a couple of times. This is to remove the excess salt from the brine that has been injected into the meat.
- Cook the beef using one of the 3 methods below. The cooked beef should feel tender (prod the outside) but not falling apart. You need to be able to slice it without it falling apart.
- Combine all the other ingredients, spread onto a large plate or tray, then roll the beef into the spice - it should stick well. But if you are having troubles, spray the beef with oil.
- Wrap up the beef in foil and store overnight or up to several days, until you want to serve it.
- To prepare: Bring the beef to room temperature (this will take a couple of hours) and unwrap the foil. If you are using the liquid smoke, sprinkle it on.
- Bake in a 250F/120C oven for 1 hour. This will make the rub crusty and will heat the pastrami through, making it melt-in-your-mouth tender.
- Rest for 15 minutes, then slice and serve piled high on rye bread with mustard, with a side of pickles - just like at Katz's!
- Pressure cooker (my preferred method): Place ½ cup of water and a rack in the pressure cooker, and place beef on the rack, fat side up. Cook on high pressure for 60 minutes. Allow the pressure to release naturally, do not release it using the valve.
- Slow cooker: Place in slow cooker without a rack and cook on high for 8 hours.
- Oven: Wrap beef in foil, cut a small slit to allow some of the juice to escape, place on tray and cook in oven for 12 hours at 220F/105F.