Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Running Behind Menu

Historical Reenactment of a Woman Running Behind a Covered Wagon, North Dakota, USA Photographic Print

Though it seems like I am making up the menu as I go along, not so. Have been shopping in Coles while we brought down two cars to take mine to the workshop in the regional centre. No Coles here. I had a list of things like sweet chilli sauce etc. that we had run out of. Also stocked up on hard to get things like green olives and capers, as usually we don't buy those things here, just what is needed for specific recipes. So I have planned out everything, but haven't finished off the final week. The tuna bake was like a baked custard. The broccoli part was very well done. Sometimes I get annoyed with broccoli. I knew I had ordered bok choy with the fruit order so got some pork mince at Coles to go with it. Even thought ahead to bring the Eski/cooler.

Monday ~ Vegetable Paella or an adaptation (see posted recipe)
Tuesday ~ Spaghetti Bolognaise
Wednesday ~ Red Lentil & Spinach Dhal
Thursday ~ Zucchini & Corn Pancakes with Roasted Tomatoes & Dill Cream
Friday ~ Tuna & Broccoli Bread Bake
Saturday ~ Stir-fried Noodles with Pork & Bok Choy
Sunday ~ Mexican Macaroni Cheese
Monday ~ Spicy Red Lentil & Pumpkin Soup
Tuesday ~ Vegetarian Japanese Pancakes

will have to check how much money I have left to work with to make up the rest of the meals. In the meantime we were given a jar of homemade poppy seed dressing

Wednesday ~ Pies, Potatoes & Peas
Thursday ~ Fragrant Egg Curry
Friday ~ Fish with Coleslaw & Poppy Seed Dressing
Saturday ~ Bacon & Spinach Macaroni Cheese
Sunday ~ Savoury Mince with Potato Wedges
Monday ~ Tuna Shepherds Pie

I got my daughter to choose a Beef Rendang recipe for herself.

Success from last week:

Our menu didn't come to be for some recipes. We had to go onto the budget version. My husband brought out my stash of cans for blackouts and in it was 2 cans of frankfurters. He made this soup and it was very nice. We are considering adapting the recipe when we next make our pea and ham soup with kranksys and brussels sprouts which is a family staple, made from canned pea and ham soup.

Yellow Split Pea & Frankfurter Soup

It turns out that it is very similar to Nigellas soup that she published in a book which is probably why it is so nice.

Yellow Split Pea and Frankfurter Soup ~ Nigellas version. My husband made the other one, with two thirds more green peas than yellow and extra peas. It was very thick though. To be honest kranskys would taste better.

Here is the official recipe: Yellow Split Pea & Frankfurter Soup

Interesting recipes:

Lasagne using pork mince

Lentil Frankfurter Soup

A paella using wild rabbit
Basic Paella Valencia

Pork & Dill Cabbage Rolls (uses pork mince)

Chorizo, Corn & Black Bean Salad with Tortillas

Monday, March 21, 2011

Frankfurter Recipe

Paella Being Served at Hotel Neptuno, Valencia, Spain Photographic Print

This recipe I invented. My husband did the hard work of making it work. It was a combination of three recipes, the first one being a frankfurter paella recipe. It is a variation of our usual paella as well because we copied those spices and the method which is actually the way my husband's Mum used to do fried rice. That method has been helped along with the canned tomatoes making it easier to eat. Without the extra meat the roasted red capsicums from the jar really makes it. We think it is versative because you have have the cooked chicken it in and/or canned prawns or leave them out. Our usual recipe has those. Our recipe varies from the McCormick one on the link because originally the McCormick one had kabana, my husband uses his Mum's method, and I have found it easier to use canned prawns or crab. If I am at the supermarket and want to make this I just buy the cooked chicken, a can of seafood, some fresh tomatoes and some shallots. The one below is more a pantry staple dish. I try to keep frankfurters as emergency food in a box for such things in case of blackouts. Which is why my husband brought it out, I needed extra food and he found the box.

Versatile Paella

Ingredients (serves 6)
* water
* 1 brown onion, finely chopped
* 3 large garlic clove, thinly chopped
* 150g green beans, topped, cut into 3.5cm pieces (stir fried)
* 3 cup arborio rice or long grain
* 1 x 400g can diced Italian tomatoes
* 2 tbs lemon pepper.
* 1 tsp tumeric
* 4 tsp chicken stock powder
* 80g bought roasted red capsicum in jar, cut into 2cm X 4 mm strips
* 1 green capsicum
* 1 can of frankfurters or we think we would actually prefer kabana like we usually use
* Oil, salt & pepper

1, Turn electric frypan on high and put rice in, add oil until all grains coated with oil.

2, Place large frypan on stove on med – high heat and place chopped beans on with 1 – 2 tabs oil.

3, Fry beans until nearly cooked, then add onion and a bit later the garlic and chopped capsicum.

4, When nearly all the grains of rice have changed colour (turn down heat) add boiled water about a cupful at a time.

5, After a while add lemon pepper, stock powder, turmeric and cooked beans, onion etc into cooking rice.

6, Cut frankfurters into thinish slices and fry on stove frypan.

7, Pour tomato juice on rice and cut tomatoes into chunks, add sliced roasted capsicum and fried frankfurters to cooked rice.

8, If rice too wet leave lid off, stir rice to help dry out.

9, Serve.

Growing Vegetables in Victoria, Australia

Yesterday I showed some detail of this book, now I am going to start at the start lol. We have found it to be very practical.

Contents Optimised

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Growing Artichokes, Asparagus and Beans in Victoria, Australia

This is the first of a series of things from a book Vegetables in the home garden, Tenth edition. 1976 Department of Agriculture Victoria. I hope to put one up every week. It is from our own books, we used this book to grow our vegetables back in the 80s.

Artichokes Beans

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Whatever Takes My Fancy Menu (as long as it doesn't cost too much)

Green Puy Lentils Photographic Print

I am still losing weight so I think the theme for this fortnight will be budget and low-fat as I haven't included any for awhile. Hopefully I can keep them and the budget happy. Do you know I was half-way into this and had some cream left over, so that is an interesting switch from low-fat. I had to buy the cream to match the parmesan I had left over from last week to quickly think of something for Tuesday. Our real shopping day is a Thursday. Having said that who knows how much Brie is these days. Also a couple of vegies may turn out an expensive surprise.

Tuesday ~ Spiced Coriander, Lentil & Barley Soup
Wednesday ~ Jerusalem Artichoke Soup
Thursday ~ Jerusalem Artichoke & Leek Soup
Friday ~ Salmon & Vegetable Pasta
Saturday ~ Fettucine Carbonara
Sunday ~ Vegetable & Bacon Ravioli
Monday ~ Vegetable Frittata
Tuesday ~ Mexican Pita Pizzas
Wednesday ~ Middle Eastern Chickpea & Vegetable Salad
Thursday ~ Pea & Brie Quiche
Friday ~ Potato & Split Pea Curry
Saturday ~ Warm Potato & Capsicum Salad with Fish
Sunday ~ Savoury Mince & Potato Wedges
Monday ~ Sloppy Joes with Coleslaw

I think our jerusalem artichokes are ready, this is their 2nd year.

Interesting recipes:

Ricotta & Spinach Frittata
Pea & Artichoke Lasagne
Three-cheese Pumpkin Pie

Saturday, March 5, 2011

The Great 'Simple Living' Survey

If you live a 'simple' lifestyle in one way or another, we need your help!

The Simplicity Institute is an organisation dedicated to research and policy analysis around the topic of simple living, downshifting, and similar lifestyles. This research is profoundly important as it touches the core of global problems such as climate change, over-consumption, work-life balance and a host of other social and ecological issues.

The Simplicity Institute's current research project is focused on people who have chosen a 'simpler' lifestyle, including changes such as reduced or restrained income, reduced consumption or reduced working hours.

If this sounds like you, then you are part of the most promising social movement on the planet. Learning more about people like you is therefore extremely important, so if you can spare 4 minutes to answer some quick questions then please do! As an added incentive, if you participate you'll go into the draw to win an exciting book package on the topic of 'simple living'.

To learn more and help build a better future, click here:

The Simplicity Institute was founded by Samuel Alexander and Dr. Simon Ussher.

Samuel Alexander is a lecturer at Melbourne University in Australia and editor of Voluntary Simplicity: The Poetic Alternative to Consumer Culture (2009). He is also the founder of the Simplicity Collective – a grassroots social network dedicated to advancing the voluntary simplicity movement.

Dr. Simon Ussher is a medical doctor in Melbourne, Australia and a passionate advocate of the holistic benefits of simple living.

The Simplicity Institute was founded with the vision of a sustainable, just and flourishing society. Read more about our mission.

Butternut and Cocoa: Live Simply Art Print

Friday, March 4, 2011

Cheap Soup Recipe

Lentil Soup with Bacon, Fried Onions and Walnut Oil Photographic Print

This recipe needs minimal vegetables, only red chillies and fresh coriander. Yes, yuk. But sometimes in just the right recipe it is nice. I haven't tried this yet. But as I am still after very cheap meals often, this is worth putting here to use later.

Don't freak out about the title (I did) it is just normal Australian soup mix.

Spiced Coriander, Lentil & Barley Soup

1 tablespoon coriander seeds
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon ghee
6 cloves garlic, crushed
2 fresh small red thai chillies, chopped finely
1 1/4 cups (250g) soup mix
1 litre (4 cups) chicken stock
3 1/2 cups (875ml) water
1 cup coarsely chopped fresh coriander
1/3 cup (95g) greek-style yoghurt
1 tablespoon mango chutney

Dry-fry seeds in large saucepan, stirring, until fragrant. Using pestle ad mortar, crush seeds.

Melt ghee in same pan, cook crushed seeds, garlic, and chilli, stirring, 5 minutes.

Add soup mix, stock and the water to pan; bring to the boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, 1 hour. Cool 15 minutes.

Blend or process half the soup, in batches, until smooth. Return pureed soup to pan with unprocessed soup; stir over medium heat until hot. Remove from heat; stir in coriander.

Serve soup topped with yoghurt and chutney.

Serves 4.

p13 AWW Smart Food (Budget Recipes)

Edited to say: I really liked it. In the end we only had Italian soup mix, and my husband put in extra barley. We just had yoghurt to serve it with in the middle.

Minced Lamb Recipe

As you know I love buying minced lamb when I can. Then I sometimes get upset with my recipes I think. So I found this one today in one of my seldom used cookbooks these days. Smart Food by the AWW, p 27.

Bread, Rolls and Olives in a Moroccan Shop Photographic Print

Bucantini with Moroccan Lamb Sauce

2 teaspoons olive oil
1 small brown onion (80g), chopped finely
2 cloves garlic, crushed
500g minced lamb
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 x 415g cans crushed tomatoes
1 large zucchini (150g), chopped coarsely
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint
375g bucatini pasta

Heat oil in large saucepan, cook onion and garlic, stirring, until onion softens. Add mince, cook, stirring until changed in colour. Add spices, cook, stirring until fragrant.

Stir in paste, undrained tomatoes and zucchini, bring to the boil. Reduce heat, simmer, uncovered about 15 minutes or until sauce thickens slightly. Stir in mint.

Meanwhile, cook pasta in large saucepan of boiling water until tender; drain. Serve pasta topped with sauce.

I don't usually like cinnamon, but because it is a AWW recipe I will see how it goes, I expect it is nice.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Broad Bean Recipe

Fava or Broad Beans (Vicia Faba). Native to the Mediterranean Region Photographic Print

This recipe is absolutely beautiful. The broad beans are not that noticeable, actually it took me awhile to remember they were there.

Salmon and Broad Bean Bake

Ingredients (serves 6)
* 500g dried tortiglioni pasta (penne)
* 500g frozen broad beans
* 25g butter
* 1 medium brown onion, finely chopped
* 4 tablespoons plain flour
* Enough milk to make semi thick sauce
* 1/2 cup reduced-fat thickened cream
* 1 large red capsicum, finely chopped
* 1 cup grated reduced-fat tasty cheese
* 415g can pink salmon, drained, flaked

1. Grease a 5cm-deep, 22cm x 27cm (base) baking dish.
Cook pasta in a saucepan of boiling, salted water,
following packet directions, until just tender. Drain.
Drizzle with olive oil. Transfer to a bowl.

2. Meanwhile, microwave beans in a covered bowl.
¼ cup water. 6 mins on high.

3. Use frypan and onion. Cook, stirring, for 2 to
3 minutes or until softened. Add capsicum cook until
soft. Remove from pan set aside.

4. Add flour, then enough oil to make semi runny.
Cook, stirring, for 1 to 2 minutes or until mixture
bubbles. Gradually stir in milk and cream, stirring
with whisk continuously. Heat on low until cooked,
add more milk if too thick. Stir in capsicum, onions
and one-third of the cheese. Cook, stirring, for
2 minutes or until melted and smooth. Season with
1 tsp salt and about ½ tsp pepper.

5. Add to white sauce mixture, beans and salmon,
then to pasta. Stir to combine. Transfer to prepared
dish. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

6. Put in 180 C oven for 20 minutes or until golden.

7. Stand for 5 minutes. Serve.

Adapted from: Salmon & Broad Bean Bake

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Sorry guys

Wooden Box with a Sign That Says

Here's the story.

I had to sign up for something using another email address. So I thought... I'll use my blog email.

I had a computer crash awhile ago, I think this is the reason, and my husband must have forgotten to set up my blog email in Outlook Express.

Last night I found this from Coles!

"We are also opened to discussing competitions to run via your blog with Coles Aussie Made prize packs if this is of interest..."

and "I am in contact as I know you are a prominent blogger in the foodie space.."


I am sure some of my patriotic Aussie mates would have appreciated something in the mail around Australia Day. I shall be keeping a good eye on my mail from now on! It was a cute email with pictures.

Ezy Sauce Apple Chutney

Granny Smith Art Print

Apple Chutney

4kg green cooking apples, cored
1.5kg onions, peeled
500g seeded raisins
60g garlic, about 5 large cloves, peeled
3 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon ground ginger
2kg sugar
1 bottle Ezy Sauce

Chop apples, onions, raisins and garlic. Alternatively, chop in batches using a food processor. Place in a large saucepan, add salt, ginger, sugar and Ezy Sauce. Mix well and simmer for about 2 hours or until mixture is a thick jam like consistency. Fill using a small jug or ladle into hot sterilised jars. Cover loosely, cool and seal. Makes about 6 litres.

Serving suggestion: pork, beef, sausages, lamb, chicken or hamburgers.