Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Homemade Breakfast Sausage

This is a follow up to a previous post. This morning I was lucky enough to have someone add their knowledge of biscuits and gravy to my kitchen experiment of a few years back. I think some of my friends have tried to tell me about the ground pork before. I love what Australians call rissoles, not sure I have had them with ground pork, sounds really nice. Since rissoles are dry, gravy sounds like a great idea.

Because my experiment was made with sausage mince, that Aussies use to make sausage rolls, it would not have been the same. I believe my gravy and biscuits were fine though, as I used American recipes and had the ingredients.

If you think this video is not traditional or doesn't have the right special breakfast sausage ingredients please add your comments. I think probably the turkey is the obvious one. I did find this recipe and the pictures look good. Yum. Here is the matching biscuit recipe.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Apples out, mint in

Piece of Apple Pie with Fork on Plate

This is not my own apple pie, but the plate looks like mine. We still have some apples to use up. Was going to make some more sauce, as we really love the sauce we made last week.

The shopping trip was interesting. The grass a bronze colour, the fog rising quickly in interesting ways. A kangaroo was going to cross, luckily I do try to go slower in that area and was able to stop without too much trouble. He/she wasn't impressed and hopped down the road near the side where he was, quite a long way while I waited and checked my mirror. Then after a longish way he crossed then, perhaps further away from the sound of my motor.

I got into the shop and noticed the prices were up, possibly for Easter? The toilet paper was $1 per roll, I thought usually it is 50c? Anyone know? This is the cheaper ones. Not that there seems to be such a thing now. The cheap one I have got for this past month is the one with the seashells.

I managed to get the fruit delivered before shopping, which is much better than waiting on the fruit and vege to be able to make meals.

Thursday ~ Spaghetti Bolognaise
Friday ~ Chow Mein & Rice
Saturday ~ Red Curry Beef & Boc Choy
Sunday ~ Split Peas & Cabbage
Monday ~ Pasta with sausage, rosemary & tomato sauce
Tuesday ~ Lamb, Broccoli, Chilli & Mint Stir-fry
Wednesday ~ Tomato, Pancetta & Broad Bean (Fava) Pasta
Thursday ~ Curried Brown Rice and Lentil Salad with Chorizo
Friday ~ Spicy Pumpkin & Beans (recipe below)
Saturday ~ Veal Campagnola & Chips
Sunday ~ Chipolatas with Turmeric Pancakes
Monday ~ Tuna & Mushroom Spaghetti
Tuesday ~ Zucchini, Pea and Angel Hair Carbonara
Wednesday ~ Tomato & Chipolata Hotpot

This recipe we really enjoyed when we first found it. I think I will try a new version above.

Thai Lamb with Chilli & Mint

Serves 4

1/4 cup (60ml) peanut or rice bran oil
400g lean lamb, cut into thin strips
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1 birdseye chilli, seeded, finely sliced
1/2 cup torn mint leaves
steamed rice, to serve

Heat oil in a wok on high. Stir-fry lamb for 2 minutes, until almost brown. Add garlic, oyster and fish sauces, sugar and chilli and stir-fry for another 2 minutes, until lamb is cooked. Stir through mint and serve with steam rice.

Originally from Table magazine or Coles Meal Ideas.

Spicy Kumara & Beans

Serves 4

1kg (2lb) kumara or sweet potato, halved and cut into lengths or pumpkin may be used if preferred (we use whatever we have)
2 tablespoons 40ml or nearly 3 US tablespoons olive oil
1 red capsicum/bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 red onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 US tablespoon or 15ml red curry paste (we keep it in a jar in the fridge indefinitely)
400g can diced tomatoes or 13oz
400g can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup (125ml) (US cups are 200ml) vegetable stock
50g or nearly 2oz baby spinach leaves (English spinach not chard)
rice and tzatsiki, to serve (we don't usually bother, not necessary)

Preheat oven to 200oC, (180oC is 350oF). Toss kumara in a baking pan with half of oil. Bake for 20-30 mins, until tender.

Meanwhile, heat remaining olive oil in a large saucepan. Saute capsicum, onion and garlic for 4-5 minutes, until tender. Stir in red curry paste and cook for 1 minute.

Stir in tomatoes, kidney beans and vegetable stock. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, partially covered, for 20 minutes. Add kumara and baby spinach. Season to taste. Serve with rice and tzatziki.

Adapted from recipe from Australian Table August 2005.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Stewed Apple

Do you make stewed apple?

Today I stewed up the apples that we picked from the tree on the side of the road. I have four lbs of apples cooking away now. My husband only picked the best apples, and the blemishes you see came off very easily with a swipe of the apple peeler.

I find a short bladed knife best for this type of work. I am putting the sugar in last. I think the theory is that sugar make the fruit keep its shape. I want my apples to squish up, so I add it last stir it in and turn off the heat.

On the internet a couple of years ago I learnt that 3lb of fruit needs about 1/2 cup sugar. I learnt that from a homecook. My Mum taught me to cut apples when I was little or a girl sometime. I learnt you only cover the base of the pan with water. I have the lid on to let that water help steam the fruit. You may be able to see the water in the pot. I think maybe I could have had a touch more.

Apple Crumble

1 cup Self Raising Flour
3/4 cup coconut dessicated
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons butter

Rub butter into dry ingredients. Put onto top of stewed apple and bake.

This recipe is before metric.

It was interesting that we were happily picking apples last weekend. A few hours later there was a very heavy downpour. Dirt got over the road, so much so that the picture someone took of it was printed in the paper.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Simpsons Baking Book 1940

County Clare Cake

Green Tomato Pie

2 1/4 cups Self Raising flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup shortening
1/2 cup cold water (about)

Fie Filling:

6-8 full-grown but green tomatoes
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespons flour
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon lemon juice

Sift flour with salt. Cut in half of the shortening until the mixture looks like meal. Add remaining shortening and continue cutting until particles are the size of a small pea. Add water gradually and mix lightly with a fork into dough - use as little water as possible. Divide dough into two parts. Roll to an 1/8 inch thickenss on floured board, rolling dough about 2 1/2 inchs larger than pie plate. Fit dough into pie plate. Mix together the sugar, flour, and nutmet and sprinkle part of this mixture into pastry lined plate. Add layer of thinkly sliced tomatoes, sprinkle with the sugar mixture and continue these layers until plate is full. Dot with the butter and sprinkle with lemon juice. Place the top crust in position. press the edges well together. Bake until the tomatoes are tender and the crust nicely browned, about 30 to 40 minutes in a hot oven (425 degs.). Makes 1 two-crust 9-inch pie. Serve warm with custard made from "Koala" Custard Powder.

I looked up Koala custard and there was an expensive secondhand tin, no picture. Well maybe another time. Apparently there were koalas on a branch.

Here is a mouth watering picture of a green tomato pie and a very interesting blog post from A Veggie Adventure.

Cream Scones

2 cups self-raising flour
1/2 teaspooon salt
2 teaspoons sugar
4 tablespoons butter
2 eggs
1/3 cup cream (all milk, or milk and water in equal parts)

Sift flour, sugar and salt two or three times. Place in mixing basin. Work in butter very finely. Add eggs well beaten (reserving a small amount of unbeaten egg white) and cream. Mix into soft dough. Toss on to floured board, and pat or roll to 3/4 -inch thickness. Cut into small squares, brush with reserved egg white, sprinkle with sugar and bake on ungreased tray in hot oven (450 degs.) 15 minutes.

As a farmer's daughter I was miffed as an adult when I heard about cream scones. I didn't know how to make them, and I love making scones. Any modern recipe won't do. This 1940s recipe is just the ticket. I figured that on our farm for example, being able to make scones from flour and the cream off the top of a milk jug in the fridge is fantastic. More frugal than buying the butter to make them. A lady here told me a fail safe recipe that I trust as well, I think it is the CWA recipe. Of course it is good because it is metric, and the above recipe is Imperial.

Here is a wonderful blog post about them (including picture of Aussie flour), and a larger recipe (I haven't compared them) from the ABC site.

Rhubarb Roly Poly

1 1/2 cups self-raising flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup milk
1 small bunch red rhubarb, finely chopped
1 sweet apple, peeled and sliced
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Sift flour, salt, and sugar into basin. Work in the butter. Add milk to make a soft scone dough. Roll to 1/4 inch thickness on floured board. Cover surface with chopped rhubarb and apple. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. Brush edges with milk and roll up like a jam roll. Secure ends and place roll in a buttered pie-dish. Pour over the following Lemon Syrup: Boil 3/4 cup water and 1/2 cup sugar for 10 minutes. Add juice 1/2 lemon and 1 tablespoon butter, stir until the butter is melted and pour immediately over the roll. Bake in a moderately-hot oven (400 degs.) about 45 minutes, or until rhubarb is tender. Serve while hot with "Koala" Custard.

My Mum used to make jam roly-poly. She loved rhubarb and used it with tapioca?

Thimble Anchovy Scones

1 3/4 cups self-raising flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon Anchovy Paste
3 drops cochineal
1 egg yolk
3/4 cup milk

Sift flour and salt into mixing basin. Work in the butter finely. Make a well in the centre of the flour mixture. Beat the egg yolk in a cup, add the anchovy paste and blend well. Add milk and cochineal. Add liquid ingredients to the flour mixture, all at once. Stir carefully with a fork until all the flour is dampened, then stir vigorously until a soft dough is formed. Turn on to a floured board and pat out to about 1/2 inch thickness. Cut into circles with a very small cutter. Place on ungreased baking tray. Brush tops with melted butter or milk. Bake in hot oven (450 degs.) about 12 minutes. Serve scones hot, spread with butter lightly flavouried with anchovy paste.

I wonder if they mean something like Pecks paste? I always have that in our cupboard. I love anchovies. I also like anchovy sauce, for cooking. We ran out. I have since bought an Asian one, but in case they are not the same, not sure, I would like an English styled one one day. I found out it is an English tradition. On the internet you learn lots of things.

I found the instructions for the scones above were very good, like a cooking class, and the other recipes too. I use a knife as in knife and fork to mix my scone dough.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Roadside Bounty

You may like all of these pictures, the wildlife have been at the tree. But really we got some good apples. The one that was damaged by the cockatoos, was a huge apple, and it is possible a gravenstein cross? Crossed with something larger perhaps. It is a beautiful apple to eat.

We also came across a beautiful plum, and some rosehips.

What is that awful stuff at the base of the tree, evidence perhaps of a roo who came recently to eat from the lower branches.

Read more about it here, down a bit.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Menu & Supermarket Adventures

It is that time of the fortnight again. Above is a photo from Flickr Creative Commons (click for all of photostream) of a typical Australian supermarket. My favourite actually, but one very far away from here.

Here are some interesting recipes I came across recently:

Ranch Style Ham & Beans
Sausages with lentils & polenta
sweet plum pork skewers
carrot fritters

I didn't make up a 14 day menu last week, so I have added in the first day.

Wednesday ~ Low fat korma curry
Thursday ~ Spaghetti Bolognaise
Friday ~ salmon zucchini and corn
Saturday ~Mushroom & Pancetta Spaghetti
Sunday ~ Lentil & Chickpea Soup with Chorizo
Monday ~ Singapore-styled Sausage Fried Rice
Tuesday ~ Polish Sausage Bigos
Wednesday ~Pork Schnitzel with Sweet Potato Chips
Thursday ~ tuna and mushroom spaghetti
Friday ~ Red Curry Beef & Bok Choy
Saturday ~ Toad in the Hole
Sunday ~ Spicy Sausage & Bean Hotpot or Sausage Casserole
Monday ~ wombuk salad & BBQ chicken
Tuesday ~ Sausage Rolls & Mashed Potatoes
Wednesday ~ Cauliflower & Bacon Macaroni Cheese

Today I found the ingredients for Mandy's Wombuk Salad. I even bought a carvolo nero plant, sound at least be able to taste it for one meal. I stocked up on kaffir lime leaves and lemon grass in a jar. It is not something you have to buy often. Amazingly, after my pantry challenge last fortnight I spent under what I usually do for food. However, I have a small list for my husband to get at the local shop to make up this menu.

BBQ chicken
sandwich meat cheap
stout or guiness 400-600ml
curly pasta
vintage cheddar 250g
2 cans lentils
2 leeks
2 zucchinis

Monday, March 9, 2009

Ezy-Sauce Tomato Sauce

Ezy-Sauce Tomato Sauce

9kg sliced ripe tomatoes
1.5kg onions, chopped fine
115g garlic, chopped
1 tablespoon ground ginger (mix into thin paste)
1.5kg sugar
140g salt
1 bottle Ezy Sauce

Boil together for 3 1/2 hours tomatoes, onions, garlic and ground ginger. Then strain and add about 1.5kg sugar, salt and Ezy Sauce. Simmer until thick enough (1 hour or more) and bottle. For a thicker sauce add 1.5 or 2kg of apples.

My husband has a note that it makes 8.81 litres. (OK the picture is not homemade tomato sauce but you get the idea.)

Ezy-Sauce Tomato Relish

Ezy-Sauce Tomato Relish

8.5kg ripe tomatoes, skinned & sliced
3kg onions, sliced
4 level tablespoons mustard powder
4 level tablespoons curry powder
mix last two with water to a thin paste
3kg sugar
1 bottle Ezy Sauce
115g flour

Put in a dish tomatoes, onions and salt. After 12 hours empty all into pan. When boiling add mustard and curry powder paste. Now add sugar and Ezy Sauce and boil about 2 1/2 hours. Then minutes before end of boiling add flour made into a thin paste with water. Pour into hot sterilized jars and seal.

I like mine on silverside. My mother made it and that is what I think I remember about it.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Kerosene Tins

What a basic thing everyone had once. If we were all poor I guess we wouldn't have one to use. It is the one with the grindstones on it.

I promised to post my recipe for homecuring meat since there are some chemicals available in some supermarkets to do that I think. Not very clearly marked though. But I will buy some next time I see it.

I found I have lots of recipes in my new book. I bet the pickled meat was actually cooked in the tin, any thoughts?

Pickled Meat

Meat pickled this way keeps like fresh. Take a good half kerosene tin of water, and put in two-pint mugfuls of salt and 1 pint mugful of sugar and boil well. Skim. Now, while boiling, put the meat in, and boil for 10 to 15 minutes. Lift off fire, put a weight on the meat to hold it down under the brine, and cook as quickly as possible. Tie cloth over tin, and keep in cool place. This is good for beef or mutton, and it can be cooked any way you like - baked or boiled. - Still Smiling.

To Corn Mutton

2lb salt, put into 2 gallons (be careful gallons may vary by country) water and bring to boil. Put in mutton, and boil for 15 minutes. Take off fire to cool, and when lukewarm add 1/2 teaspoon saltpetre dissolved in a little warm water. Cover over, and keep in a cool place. Tested, and found good. - Still Smiling.

Salt petre may be considered unhealthy, not sure. My husband suggested small amounts, so you wouldn't want to add extra. However, our large knob of luncheon meat that I bought commercially last week or nearly two weeks ago has this ingredient in it.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Simplicity Chocolate Cake ~ Australian Classic

Chocolate Cake Mixture Sticking to Beater by Alain Caste

I'm in cake heaven again. Recently I was reading about my favourite cake my Nana made on a blog. In it the cake was adapted to make lemon muffins and I was thrilled. My Nana made variations as well, mostly lamingtons. I found on the net more variations. Today I was even more thrilled to find in a fund raiser book I bought recently, and older one reprinted, more variations. I have been having such fun with this book. I have made Sweet Impossible Pie for one thing.

Variations 1
Variations 2

I have written the recipe in a composite of my Nana's recipe and the fundraiser recipe.

Simplicity Chocolate Cake

3 tab or oz butter or margarine
1 cup sugar
2 level tabs cocoa
1/2 cup milk
1 cup Self Raising Flour
2 eggs
1/2 or 1 teaspoon almond or vanilla.

Melt the butter. Pull all other ingredients into a large basin and pour the melted butter on top of them. Beat really hard for 3 (8?) minutes, or low speed beat hard for 2-3 minutes. Pour the mixture into a prepared tin and bake in moderate oven. Be careful not to overcook. Time will depend on size and shape of tin. Loaf tin 350oF or 180oC for approximately 40 minutes.

Ice chocolate cake with chocolate icing and nuts or just dust with icing sugar.


Make simplicity chocolate cake without using the cocoa.

Lamington Icing:

1 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon butter
1 cup hot water

Place in saucepan and bring to boil. Thicken with 1 dessertspoon custard powder (Bird's if you are in the US) and 1 dessertspoon cocoa. Boil 5 minutes.

Cut cake into squares and dip into icing. Sprinkle with coconut.

Cinnamon Cake
1 teaspoon mixed spice and 1 teaspoon cinnamon (instead of cocoa)

Orange Cake
Juice of 1/2 an orange and rind and make up to 1/2 cup of milk (replaces cocoa and milk).

Passionfruit Cake
2 tablespoon of passionfruit and make to 1/2 cup of milk (replaces cocoa and milk).

Monday, March 2, 2009

Pantry Ponderings

The Pantry by Consuelo Gamboa

Today (the other day now) I have been emptying out the canned food section of my pantry into a box to get a good look in there. I found I have lots of food really, perhaps not many vegetables. I had to start the pickled pork off earlier than the time we usually start tea/dinner. I bought it because there were wonderful specials on at IGA, on the meat and other things, and especially extra strength Dilmah tea which was nice. The pickled pork has been lovely on sandwiches.

Thursday ~ Chow Mein & Rice
Friday ~ Picked pork with stewed apple
Saturday ~ Curried Sausages with Pumpkin
Sunday ~ Moroccan Sweet Potato, Carrot and Chickpea Soup with Turkish bread
Monday ~ sausage casserole
Tuesday ~ Lamb Chops with White Bean Puree & Chips
Wednesday ~ Meatball, Vegetable & Barley Soup with Rosemary Croutons
Thursday ~ Sausages & Potatoes
Friday ~ Oven-baked Sausage and Tomato Risotto
Saturday ~ Family Mince Pie
Sunday ~ Cabbage with Split Peas
Monday ~ Five spice meatballs with plum sauce

We get a small amount of money then and will make up the two day shortfall.

I'm excited for those who haven't experienced the Taste website's budget recipes. They are printing some each month free with the major newspapers. Check it out.

I found an Australian video on how to have cooked sauerkraut. I think it has Maeve O'Meara in it. Yes, I have a large can of sauerkraut in the pantry. I am not German, but cook it sometimes. I am a learner. It is particularly nice on a cold day for a cooked lunch. My Grandparents seemed to have cabbage based recipes on cold days too, I'm sure. I suppose it is much better than drawing blow flies!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Scones Vs Biscuits

Scone with Cream and Small Milk Jug by Alexander Van Berge

For all those outside the States who have read Little House on the Prairie and wondered what biscuits were, I'll let you know what I have learnt on my time on the net. Since blogging, the exchange of information seems to be speeding up. Still I have come across some interesting things in my love of biscuit research lol. I even tried with my limited knowledge at the time to make biscuits and gravy. To an Australian, putting white sauce on scones is... well I won't say. Thankfully these days, the Pioneer Woman has a picture with sausage. I am not sure if we can buy an equivalent in meat here. I used sausage mince, which we use to make sausage rolls. My understanding is now, perhaps sausage is just a flavoured mince? Who knows. Maybe someone who has been to the two countries can shed some light on it.

Pioneer Woman's Biscuits and Gravy

I used the biscuit recipe from Hillybilly Housewife. A very popular site for those trying to save money. I have the gravy recipe I used in a marbig folder (I think that link is the one I used), but with Pioneer Woman it is more a complete unit to use.

What I have noticed for those who say why don't I just use a scone recipe. If you compare them, biscuits has lots more butter in them. For Aussie scones, there is usually only one ounce or 30g of butter from memory.

Therefore in our country we don't have Bisquik in the stores, but we do have a scone mix. I used it to make this great recipe for a pork dinner from Betty Crocker. A great site.

Here is a great post about apple biscuits.

A great biscuit recipe here from an Mennonite cookbook.

My favourite savoury scone, is the ham ones, with very finely chopped ham that I learnt in High School (I actually went to a Tech School). There were herb ones and cheese. Will have to check that out and perhaps post the recipe. I still have my text book.

Scones are a delight to me, same with biscuits (US). Please add your comments or memories.