About Me

Here at Sensei Cooks I write about my adventures in the kitchen and sometimes in the dojo.

I have a love for cooking and want to explore all the possible facets of it. Leave no stone unturned so to speak.

I am Vegan and love all types of vegan cooking.

I love the process of cooking. Being in the moment. Sort of Zen and the Art of Cooking.

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A great DVD is Jamie Oliver in “Oliver’s Twists 2” . I guess there was a number one but I have not seen it yet. First let me say that we do not have TV. We have a TV, several in fact but we only watch DVD’s and VHS tapes, no actual TV shows. I gave up cable 20 odd years ago and have never looked back. When Belle and I got together I asked if she minded if we do without the TV stations. No problem. Now I wish I could watch cooking shows and I wish we could have educational shows for Dylan’s Home Schooling, but I do not want the rest of the stuff they try to pass off as entertainment these days. If Sean or Hayley see a great series at a friends or their dad’s, they will tell us and we can always buy the season DVDs, no commercials and no extra stuff to sit through. I am happy in my little world, but I really do wish I could watch some of the great cooking shows out there.

My sister-in-law taped a few for me but she has not done any in a year or two !!!! HINT HINT Dawn!!! No seriously I know it is hard to remember to tape a show when you are busy with your own things, children and work. Actually I don’t think she has VHS anymore, does anyone except me? Hey, if anyone out there has DVD’s or tapes of cooking shows and wants to get rid of them, please let me know and I will gladly pay for the shipping. Belle, buys me any cooking DVD’s she can find but there are a lot of good shows that never make it to DVD.

Now that I think of it Corby, if you tape/record “Licence to Grill” make me a copy and if you don’t… think about it.

Anything with Jamie Oliver, Gordon Ramsay, Nigella Lawson, Jacques Pépin, Nobu or well just about anyone. Is great.

Here is an Irish Classic dish – Champ. This is a mashed potato dish with scallions (green onions). It is simple and basic. But it is delicious. Jamie tries to go one more step in his creation (housewives dinner party style champ is the comment) but what it says is, “Take it where ever you want”. Experiment with these classics. They are not written in stone and with a little daring, who knows, you may create the next “classic dish”.

Belle loves the Potato Roesti’s I have been making. We were going to have one of our candle lit, romantic sitting and listening to “Hell Hole” evenings and I asked her if she would like me to add garlic (her most favourite ingredient) or hot peppers etc to the Roesti I was going to make for this late night snack. She said NO!, I love it exactly the way you made it before. Fine. I added some minced garlic and chopped Thai Red peppers to one of mine – Wow!! it was great. I think we really have to experiment with all this and not stay with the tried and true. Just my opinion.

Read Belle’s blog     http://msbookish.com for more information on this New Night Time Ritual.

Here is the Champ which we had Strip-loin steak and the Tequila-Avocado Sauce, stir-fried cabbage & carrot (I had left over cabbage).

adapted from Jamie Oliver’s “Oliver’s Twists 2”

2 lb Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into small pieces
1 cup milk
3 tbsp butter
1 bunch scallions, sliced (green bigger then white) – keep green and white separate
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

  1. Boil the potatoes in salted water (approx 20 minutes).
  2. Mash the potatoes.
  3. Pre-heat oven to 300 degree F.
  4. In a large saucepan heat the milk and the butter, then simmer.
  5. Add the Add the white scallions for 1 minutes then and add the green parts and simmer for a few minutes.
  6. Take off the heat and stir.
  7. Add the mashed potatoes to the milk and stir.
  8. Season with salt and pepper.
  9. Place the Champ mixture in a cast iron pot, add a 2 tbsp piece of butter in the centre and cover with lid OR
  10. Place the Champ in 3-4 small containers, add the butter and the lids.
  11. Place in the oven for 5-10 minutes.
  12. Remove and serve.

This is a real treat. You can add things at this point, like watercress, celery leaves etc. But it tastes fantastic just plain and simple, mashed potatoes, scallions and butter.


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5 comments to Champ

  • This looks like a recipe I should use for my husband’s family. They are crazy about potatoes; they tell me it’s the Irish in them! But I never heard the name Champ. Personally, I’m with you – the Thai red peppers sound like a great addition!


  • It is a classic Irish dish. I am sure your in-laws know all about it.
    And even if they don’t , introduce them to this simple and wonderful dish.

    Good luck with the meal!!!


  • Argh you are so right. I am remiss in taping and haha! I do still have the VCR. I just have to re-hook it up. There are so many fun programs that I wonder how to tape them all?? Of course there is something called bit torrent but I didn’t say that because I have no idea what bit torrent is. Really I don’t. Nope. No idea that you could download cooking shows.


  • You are such great people. I love the image of a candle-lit, romantic evening listening to…Hell Hole? Oh yes, romance is in the air.

    This recipe sounds great, especially since I finally made a peppermill for our own use. Is it just me or do these Champs beg for bacon? Hmmm, I suppose most things do.


    Ward Reply:

    I believe that would be considered a “house wife party idea” but then again… YES, it sounds good to me. Hayley wouldn’t eat it and she really likes this champ so I would have to make sure hers did not have any. Great idea Steve. Will give it a try.

    I do not what I would do without your salt and pepper mills!!!! They are used everyday, all day long. People, do your selves a BIG favour (favor for our American friends)Order two of these from Steve and some for your friends. They are great and are essential in my kitchen. They work so well and look fantastic.


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