Sunday, 17 December 2017

Spicy Borlotti Bean & Sundried Tomato Dip

 I really felt like some dip today when I went shopping the store brought ones looked so unappealing and expensive for the tiny amount you get. Oh I have had them before they are convenient and a lot say there is no preservatives but I swear I can taste them. My mouth always breaks out in mouth ulcers too as soon as I eat preservatives or anything artificial and so that puts me off buying them.
 I have heaps of dried beans in the cupboard though and summer is here so I thought I would whip myself up some homemade bean dip. By the time I had soaked and prepared the beans though my craving for dip was gone. 
There is enough dip here to keep the party going so prepare this a day ahead.   
What you need:
1/2 pkt of dried Borlotti beans
1/2 a small jar of Marinated Sundried or semi-dried tomatoes (keep the oil)
5 sprigs of basil or  a good handful of parsley ( I had neither when I made this today though)
1/3 cup of extra virgin  olive oil
Teaspoon of fresh minced chilli (optional)
3 cloves of fresh garlic
Juice of 2 lemons 
1 teaspoon of Bicarb soda
What to do:
1. Prepare the beans. Soak in a bowl of water for 6-8 hours or overnight. Drain and rinse well. In a pot of boiling water with one teaspoon of bicarb soda simmer the beans until tender. Drain and rinse with cold water. 
2. Leaving the olive oil and lemon juice until last.
 Place all the other ingredients including the kept marinated oil into a processor and blitz until smooth and creamy.
 NOTE: I add the olive oil and lemon juice in small batches to make sure I don't put to much in  doing a little taste test as I go
3 Bingo your done, place in a bowl decorate with a little basil or parsley and a little drizzle of olive oil and your good to go enjoy.
Spicy Borlotti Bean & Sundried Tomato Dip


Thursday, 23 November 2017

Roast Sweet Potato, Spinach & Feta Pie

The top and bottom of the pie are both puff pasty, I like to cook the pie then flip it onto a plate and slide it back in the pan upside down and cook the bottom until it too is crispy, then flip it back onto a plate right side up, the result was perfection. Oh but I forgot one thing ...onion, having said that I think it would of overpowered the lovely dill flavour, maybe a few shallots would of been good though. so add them if you wish. I served it with a simple salad and a warm sweet balsamic sauce by simply mixing balsamic vinegar and a bit of brown sugar to a pan until lightly caramelized. This is a great pie for any meal hot or cold. It is super easy to do as well  hope you enjoy it,

What you need:

1x non stick deep pie dish
2x sheets of Puff Pastry
3x 60g eggs ( one for the wash)
200gm pkt of Feta Cheese
1x pkt of frozen Chopped Spinach ( thawed and all the water squashed out)
1x medium sweet potato
2 teaspoons dried Dill Leaves
salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon of crushed garlic
diced Shallots (optional)

What to do:

1. Roast the sweet potato in a little olive oil with dried dill leaves and garlic until just cooked, roughly mash with a fork, you want it chunky not mashed.
2. Place into a large bowl the sweet potato, spinach, crumble in the feta cheese , add 2 eggs, salt pepper and add some more dried dill and the shallots if you have them. Mix until well combined.
3. Line the pie tin with one sheet of the puff pastry. No need to cut the edges off. Fill with the pie mixture and cover with the other sheet of pastry. Now tuck in all the edges of the pastry so it is completely enclosed.
4. Whisk the remaining egg and brush the top of the pie. Bake in a fan forced over and 185 medium fan for about 40 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Remove from oven.
5.Place a plate on top of the pie and flip it out, then slide it back into the pie dish, brush with egg wash and pop it back in the oven until the bottom is golden brown. Remove from oven and flip the pie back out onto a plate or wire rack.
6. serve hot or cold with a leafy green salad 
Roast Sweet Potato, Spinach & Feta Pie

Sunday, 12 November 2017

Little Drunk Rum Balls

When a guest left a half bottle of rum after a visit it sat in the cupboard as I don't drink it. But hell I eat these babies so today I made rum balls, yummy mouthfuls of stress relief, just keep these away from the kiddies. I can't remember the last time I had one of these probably 30 years ago at least. and Oh my gosh theses are lush..!

What you need:

350 g chocolate cake mix (any cheap basic mix will do )
1/2 cup Bundaberg Rum
200 g sweetened condensed milk (give or take)
1 tablespoon instant coffee powder
1 tablespoon  cocoa powder
1/4 cup hot water
2 x 375 blocks dark cooking chocolate
4 x 150 g chocolate sprinkles

What to Do: 

 1. Bake cake as per the packet instructions and allow to cool.
 2. Crumb the chocolate cake into fine crumbs.
 3. Dissolve the cocoa and instant coffee in hot water and then toss evenly through crumbs.
 4. Pour the rum over crumbs and toss through evenly.
 5. Slowly knead in sweetened condensed milk, a little at a time until mixture is firm but moist.
 6. Refrigerate for at least an hour.
 7. Roll mixture into teaspoon sized balls approximately 2-3 cm in diameter.
 8. Melt chocolate in bowl over saucepan on low heat.
 9. Dip rum balls in chocolate, shake off excess then roll in sprinkles and place in small paper patty cups.


You can roll alternate batches in coconut as well to mix it up a bit.
little Drunk Rum Balls

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Oven Baked Zucchini, Carrot & Feta Patties

Here is a recipe that the girls found online and posted today. oven-baked-zucchini-and-feta-cakes-fritters.
I was just going to bake some vegies for dinner But I had all the ingredients for this ( well sort of) and they looked so yummy I thought I would do a version of them myself. So here is my version. If your are a vegetarian you will love them and of course you can change it up depending what you have on hand like I had to do.

 What you Need:

FOR THE ZUCCHINI CAKES: makes 7-8 little patties
1 large zucchini, trimmed, washed and grated
1 medium carrot, grated
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp chopped fresh dill
1 large egg
1pkt 200g crumbled feta cheese
3/4 cup breadcrumbs ( I made my breadcrumbs in my nutri-bullet a mixture of cornflakes and weetbix) seriously makes the best breadcrumbs ever.

What to Do

  1. Place grated zucchini and carrot in a mesh strainer over a bowl. Sprinkle with salt, stir to evenly distribute it. Let the zucchini sit like that for 20 minutes, so they can release liquid.
  2. After 20 minutes squeeze out as much liquid out of the zucchini as you can.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or lightly sprayed foil
  4. In a bowl combine drained zucchini and carrot, black pepper, garlic, olive oil, baking powder, dill, egg, feta cheese and breadcrumbs.
  5. Shape about 2 tbsp patties and place them on the baking tray, leaving some space in between.
  6. Bake at 350 F until golden - for 20-30 minutes turning once.
    NOTE: You can make any sort of sauce to go with these, is all I had on hand was some light sour cream and fresh lemons and that was enough for me.
    Oven Baked Zucchini, Carrot & Feta Patties


Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Pear Tarte Tatin

I Don't know why on earth I have never made one of these before until now. Sweet yummy pears and spices and puff pastry oh yum. just the thing for a sweet dessert on a chilly night and super easy to make  with next to no mess to clean up which is even better. Delicious warm or cold. I am sure the whole family will love this  

What you need:

Skillet with removable handle or heat proof handle. For this I used a small cast iron skillet and serves 2-3 people
1/4 cup caster sugar  and 2 tablespoons
40 g cold butter, chopped
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon 
4 small pears, peeled, cored and cut into wedges
2 tablespoons of lemon juice
1 sheet of puff pastry
Cream or Ice Cream, to serve .

What to do :

  1.  Place the pear wedges in a bowl with the lemon juice and the 2 tablespoons of sugar, gently mix well.
  2. Preheat oven to 200 fan forced. Put the skillet/ frying pan over a  low to medium heat. Add the sugar and heat to a lovely caramel colour, stirring constantly. Add the butter, ginger and cinnamon and stir to combine.
  3. Place the pears in the caramel and spoon over the mixture. Turn the heat down and cook for 5–10 minutes, until the pears are just tender and cooked but retain their shape. Remove from the heat and cool slightly. Arrange the pears so they look pretty in the pan.
  4. Cut a disc slightly bigger than your pan. Place the pastry disc on top of the pears and caramel, then carefully tuck it snugly around the outside of the pears and down into the sides of the pan.
  5. 5. Bake the pie for 30–40 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown and puffed up. Remove from the oven and leave for 10 minutes. 
  6. Run a knife around the edge, place a large plate over the top and carefully turn the tart onto the plate. Serve with cream or ice cream. Enjoy.
    Pear Tarte Tartin  

Friday, 1 September 2017

Bacon, Spinach Carbonara Bake

What you need:

Small pkt of LO Carb Pasta of your choice
Bacon diced  about 4-5 middle rashers
1 Onion  diced
1 Small Capsicum diced
1/2 Pkt Frozen Spinach
3 Cloves of garlic finely diced
2 eggs whisked
200mls (small jar) Thickened Cream
A good handful of grated fresh Parmesan Cheese
1/4 cup White wine vinegar or White wine ( I used white wine vinegar for mine )
Cherries Tomatoes halved about 8-10
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 teaspoon of fresh Lemon Thyme
Chopped Parsley
Grated Vintage tasty cheese, enough to sprinkle on top.

What to do:

1.Cook the pasta until al dente, drain and keep some of the liquid, set aside.
2. Fry the bacon until just crispy, set aside.
3. Fry the onion and capsicum until soft , add the garlic and cook for a minute or two more until it starts to brown.
4. Reduce stove to a low heat, Add the bacon back to the pan, add the white wine vinegar simmer for a minute or two, add the cream and parmesan cheese. When the cheese has melted add the whisked eggs mix well. Add the Spinach and herbs and a small amount of the liquid from the pasta and salt and pepper.
5. Run the Pasta under some hot water  ( I find doing dishes like this the pasta when done first sits and gets sticky) drizzle with a little olive oil
6. Transfer pasta to a casserole dish, pour the bacon mixture over the top mix thorough . Pop the cherry tomato halves on top, sprinkle with cheese and bake on 185 fan forced .for about 30 minutes. If the cheese starts to brown to much pop the casserole lid on.
Bacon, Spinach Carbonara Bake

Bacon, Spinach Carbonara Bake

Friday, 7 July 2017

Deluxe Curry Chicken

Who doesn't love a good curry?. It is always a favorite in my house usually the hotter the better. and I can make lots of different varieties of it, Indian, Thai etc. I Remember growing up and mum made Curry a lot  Back then I thought it was pretty good. and she always used "keens curry powder". I prefer to make my own curry blend from herbs and spices. the other night we had the dilemma of "what are we going to have for dinner?". . Being the middle of winter and a pretty bare pantry we decided curry was the go but alas my spice rack is looking fairly dismal. so I threw together a basic curry using good old keens curry powder and a fer bits and pieces and made curried sausages. I can't even remember the last time I had eaten that, and it was way better than I ever remembered it was. So tonight I made a curry chicken but the recipe is slightly different due to the fact I didn't have a few things left after making the curried sausages...So this is the curry chicken recipe and I will put the sausage variation up as well.

What you need:  

 Electric Frying Pan
500g Chicken tenders or breast (cooked either cut into cubes or pulled apart ( I prefer the later)
1 large Onion halved and sliced
2 Carrots sliced
2 small Potatoes
1-2 stalks of Celery sliced
1/2 cup Frozen Peas
Broccoli ( I decided to add it at the last minute, about a cup full ( separating the florets)
2 cups of Chicken Stock
2-3 heaped tablespoons of Keens Curry Powder
1 tablespoon on Minced Garlic
2 tablespoons of Tomato Paste
2 tablespoons of Fruit Chutney
2 small Chillies chopped (take the seeds out if you prefer)
1x tin of Coconut Cream
1 tablespoon of Coconut Oil
1 Heaped tablespoon of Crunchy Peanut Butter
1 tablespoon of Cornflour
1-2 teaspoons of Ground Ginger
1 teaspoon of Ground Coriander 
1/2 teaspoon of Paprika
1 teaspoon of Turmeric
Salt and pepper to taste

What to Do:

1. Once you have cooked the chicken and prepped all the vegetables and washed them your ready to throw this baby together .
2. put all the vegetables ( EXCEPT THE BROCCOLI)  in the electric frying pan  with a dash of oil and cook until just tender. To stop them from sticking and browning add some of the stock, it also helps them to cook faster.
3.Add the Garlic,Chillies, Tomato Paste Fruit Chutney and all the dried spices and fry just for a minute or  two then add the rest of the stock and simmer for a few more minutes.
4. Add the Coconut Cream and Coconut Oil and mix well all the while on a slow simmer.
5. Add the Chicken and Crunchy Peanut Butter
6.If the sauce is still a little to thin use a couple spoonfuls to make a paste with the Cornflour and add in to the pan.
6. Add the broccoli last cover with a lid and gently simmer until the broccoli is cooked.
7. Serve with rice ( add some Turmeric to the rice whilst cooking for a tasty yellow rice).
Deluxe Curry Chicken