Sunday, September 19, 2010

Trying to be a smartie pants sometimes gets you in trouble!

I thought I would channel my inner Martha Stewart and bake some chocolate scrolls for the kids this week. My boys have an excursion so I thought they would enjoy an extra treat as they went about their day.

I halved the dough recipe, as the original recipe makes a stack load of scrolls. Adjusting a recipe can sometimes turn out in the negative but luckily the dough turned out perfect.

Rolled out my dough, spread the butter; scattered sugar; liberally, and I mean liberally, scattered choc chips and choc melts; rolled the dough up; cut them and placed them in the baking trays.

Everything going well.

Have a chat to Hubby on Skype while the scrolls are cooking. Interrupt the conversation to pull my baking out of the oven.

In a need for praise I take my hot, fresh scrolls into the study to show Hubby my handy work....he's drooling...I'm beaming...

Everything is good.

Turn around to take my hot buns (pun intended) back to the kitchen..............

Sleeve gets caught on the door know where this is going!!

Scrolls up-end themselves onto the floor.........

Quickly I try to save them, but unfortunately they are barely recognisable.......

Luckily I have another batch baking in the oven and I didn't feel half as guilty about eating the "unedible" ones that evening!!

Have you had a food disaster like this before?

P.S. they tasted as good as they should have looked.
P.P.S. I said a few choice words , it's only natural

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Fresh Pasta

We eat a lot of pasta dishes throughout the week in our house. They are just so easy and convienent to whip up and more importantly everyone will eat pasta.

So, a little while ago Ewan bought me a pasta machine. The machine has sat on the top of my kitchen cupboards, still boxed, since the day it came home. It's not because I didn't want it, it was just that everytime I was making a pasta dish I needed the pasta NOW not in an hour after kneading/resting/rolling the dough.

Nadine (my sister) invited us around to her place yesterday so the kids could hang out. So I took the opportunity to mess up her kitchen and make that pasta that I have been dying to try out.

The recipe I used came from Jamie Oliver's website, but on speaking with Dee it seemed that the common egg to flour ratio was 1 egg to 100gm of strong "00" flour. (here's another use for "00" flour)

It was a very easy process and the outcome was a FAR SUPERIOR product than the store bought stuff.

The main issue was where to hang all that fettucine.......the door handle of the oven certainly came in handy!

This recipe makes enough dough to feed an army. Yesterday I only used half the dough to feed the troops. So now I have the other half, which will easily feed a family of 5, in the fridge for a meal during the week.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Moist Banana Cake, with homemade buttermilk

Often in baking one of the ingredients required is buttermilk, something I don't commonly have stored away in my fridge.

So I make my own when I need it.

It's soooooo very simple, you only need two ingredients - milk & white vinegar

It's not an exact science, I've never measured out the vinegar to milk ratio but I know that I'm trying to replicate buttermilks consistency so to a 1/2 cup of milk I add approximately 1 -2 tablespoons of vinegar.

Wait a minute and if your milk hasn't got that slightly curdled texture add a splash more vinegar.

It's a simple trick but one I use almost everytime I bake.

So make up some buttermilk, grab yourself a couple of bananas and mix up a banana cake as an afternoon treat.

Banana Cake


125gm butter, softened
1 1/2 C caster sugar
2 bananas, mashed
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
1/3 C buttermilk
1 1/2 C plain flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder

  • Preheat the oven to 165 degrees celsius. Line and grease a 24cm round baking tin
  • In a medium bowl combine the butter & sugar and beat until creamy, stir in the vanilla extract.
  • Add one egg at a time, ensuring that they combine with the butter mixture then stir in the banana's.
  • Add the buttermilk & sifted flour and baking powder. Stir until the ingredients are well combined.
  • Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for approximately 40 - 45 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and cool on a rack.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

choc-mint mousse cakes

I wanted to make my come back to the food blog something worth remembering & let me tell you I have succeeded. Both of these "cupcakes" were really really delicious but my stand out favourite was the choc-mint mousse cake so this is the recipe I am sharing. I'm a sucker for anything chocolate & minty.


Double chocolate mint cake

6 square after dinner mints, chopped coarsley
60g dark eating chocolate, chopped coarsley
2/3 cup (160ml) water
90g butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon, peppermint essence
1 cup (220g) firmly packed brown sugar
2 eggs
2/3 cup (100g) self-raising flour
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/3 cup (40g) almond meal
1 tablespoon cocoa powder, extra

Chocolate mousse

150g dark eating chocolate, chopped roughly
1/2 teaspoon peppermint essence
3/4 cup (180ml) thickened cream
2 eggs, seperated
2 tablespoons caster sugar


1. Make chocolate mousse:

Combine chocolate, essence and half the cream in a mediun heatproof bowl over a medium saucepan of simmering water, stir until smooth. Cool mixture 5 minutes, then stir in egg yolks. Beat remaining cream in a small bowl with electric mixer until soft peaks form. Beat egg whites in another small bowl with electric mixer until soft peaks form; add sugar gradually, beat until dissolved. Fold cream into chocolate mixture, then egg whites. Spoon mixture into a shallow baking dish. Cover, refrigerate 4 hours or until firm.

2. Preheat oven to moderately slow (170deg C/150 fan-forced). Line 6 hole texas or 12 hole standard muffin pan with paper cases.

3. Combine chocolate and the water in small saucepan; stir over low heat until smooth.

4. Beat butter, essence, sugar and eggs in small bowl with electric mixer until light and fluffy.

5. Stir in sifted flour and cocoa, almond meal, warm chocolate mixture and after dinner mints. Divide mixture among cases; smooth surface.

6. Bake large cakes about 40 minutes, small cakes about 30 minutes. turn cakes onto wire rack to cool.

7. Place a lightly greased collar of foil around each cakes. Divide firm chocolate mousse evenly among tops of cakes. Freeze cakes for about 30 minutes to help set the mousse quickly.

8. Dust mousse with extra sifted cocoa. Gently remove foil.

9. Indulge

Instead of after dinner mints I used Lindt mint chocolate & I have not looked back. Also, the other cake in the photo is a lemon cheesecake, but thats a recipe for another day.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Peanut Butter Museli Bars

Feeling like a snack that meets the "healthy" description but without the blandness that sometimes the term implies.

Well these museli bars are healthy with a little bit of naughty chocolate thrown in for good measure.

You could obviously leave the choc chips out, but why?

Museli Bars


125gm Butter
1/2c Plain flour
2/3c Brown sugar
1 1/4c Rice bubbles
3/4c Rolled oats
1/2c Choc chips
1tbs Peanut butter
1tbs Honey
1/2c Desicated coconut
3/4c Roasted cashews, unsalted
200gm Apricot delight (minus the few, alright about 6, that I ate)

  • Preheat the over to 150 degrees celsius. Line a 25 x 30cm tin with baking paper and grease.
  • Combine the butter, peanut butter, sugar and honey in a saucepan and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
  • Place all the other ingredients in a bowl, add the melted butter mixture and combine well.
  • Press mixture firmly into the tin and bake for 40mins or until golden brown.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tin before cutting.

Monday, May 31, 2010

The best burger in town

You just can't beat a good burger!

The smokeyness of a grilled pattie, the softness of a fresh bun - it's the simplicity that makes it so delicious.

So last night, with the family over for Ailish's birthday, I made some delicious patties and everyone got to build their burger of choice.

What do you like in a burger?


Beef Burger


500gm Beef mince
3 Springs Rosemary, finely chopped
1 Onion, finely chopped
1 Clove of garlic, finely chopped
Pinch of mild paprika
2 Tsp Dijon mustard
2 Tbs Worcestershire sauce
2 Eggs
2 Tbs Almond meal
1/2 C Bread crumbs

  • Combine almond meal, rosemary, mild paprika on a baking tray and place in a moderate oven for about 10 - 15 minutes or until the almond meal is golden brown.
  • Combine onion and garlic in a fry pan and fry until the onion's are soft and brown. Allow to cool.
  • In a large bowl add the beef and all the ingredients together. Mix well.
  • Make your patties and refrigerate before grilling.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Chocolate Self-Saucing Pudding

With the cool evenings here to stay for a while my mind, & stomach, turn to warm comfort food. And nothing says comfort like Chocolate Self-Saucing Pudding topped with vanilla ice cream.

Chocolate Self-Saucing Pudding


60gm Butter
1/2 C Milk
1/2 Tsp Vanilla extract
3/4 C Caster sugar
1 C Self-raising flour
1 Tbs Cocoa powder
3/4 C Firmly packed brown sugar
1 Tbs Cocoa powder, extra
2 C Boiling water

  • Preheat oven to 170 degrees celsius and grease a 1.5 litre overproof dish.
  • Melt butter with the milk in a medium saucepan. Remove from the heat and stir in vanilla extract and caster sugar then sifted flour and cocoa. Spread mixture into dish.
  • Sift brown sugar and extra cocoa over the mixture. Gently pour the boiling water over the mixture.
  • Back for about 40 minutes or until the centre is firm.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Pork loin cutlets with creamy mustard sauce

What is ~

Simple, easy, one-pot-wonder, set & forget

Answer ~

Phrases that I prefer in a recipe

You know how it is, you're either at work or running around during the day, you pick the kids up from school and you taxi them from one after-school activity to the next, all the while your sifting through your memory for a quick, easy meal for the evening that has just a smidge of nutritional value.

Toasted cheese sandwiches are served up on a weekly basis in our home as a "meal!" and this is how I justify it nutritionally ~ fibre from the bread, calcium from the cheese!!!!

It's never easy, so when I came across this recipe from and saw that it ticked most of my requirements, and that I had most of the ingredients, I knew it was going to be a mid-week meal for us, and maybe for you!

Pork Loin Cutlets with Creamy Mustard Sauce


800gm Desiree potatoes, unpeeled and cut into wedges
1 Red capsicum, deseeded & thickly sliced
1/4C Wholegrain Mustard
1Tbs Olive oil
1/3C Chicken stock
4 Pork loin cutlets
1/2C Thickened cream
1/4C Flat-leaf parsley, chopped

  • Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celsius
  • Place the potatoes and capsicum in a large roasting pan.
  • Combine mustard, oil, stock & salt and pepper in a jug & pour over the vegetables.
  • Place the pork cutlets on top of the vegetables, season with salt and pepper, and cook in the oven for 30 minutes or until the pork is just cooked through.
  • Remove the pork, cover with foil and let them stand for 10 minutes.
  • Add the cream & parsley to the vegetable in the pan, stir to combine and return them to the oven for a further 10 minutes.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Great Food & Great Company


Last night I went out to dinner with some friends from Singapore. Ping had studied in Adelaide years ago and had a hankering to visit his favourite Italian restaurant in Adelaide Enoteca. It was some of the best food I have ever tasted. I started with the salmon entree, it was very velvety. The salmon roe would pop in my mouth showering my tastebuds with salty delight. Then I had a gnocchi main meal and as a general rule I don't choose gnocchi but I figured that my chances of getting a first grade gnocchi was pretty good this time.
I was blown away. The gnocchi pillows were light and fluffy without a hint of studgyness. The rabbit and swiss brown mushrooms were rich and very fulfilling. A first rate meal. The company was so enjoyable that we didn't even notice the lateness of the hour till we got up to pay the bill. It was 11pm and we were the last ones there.
I know this is a recipe blog but this time I took some liberty with the term kitchen comfort because last nights meal was the epitome of comfort food as only the Italians know how.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Scones with Jam & Cream

Afternoon tea at my sisters house for Mother's Day and this is what I'm taking.

Warm, fluffy scones served with Blackberry jam and a dollop of cream.

Simple and delicious, perfect Mother's Day fair.

I hope your Mother's Day is just as simple and enjoyable.



2 1/2 C Self raising flour
1 Tbs Caster sugar
30gm Butter, chopped
1 1/4 C Buttermilk
Jam and Cream to serve with scones

  • Preheat the over to 200 degrees celsius. Grease a baking pan
  • Sift flour and sugar into a large bowl then rub in the butter
  • Add the buttermilk and using a knife cut the buttermilk through the flour mixture to make a soft, sticky dough. Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead gently until smooth.
  • Press the dough out to 3cm thickness and cut out with a round cookie cutter. Place the scones, just touching, on the pan. Gently knead the scraps of dough together and cut out further scones. Brush the scone tops with a little buttermilk
  • Bake the scones for about 15 minutes
  • Serve warm with jam and cream
  • I got 12 scones out of one batch
  • Gentle is the key word ~ if you handle the dough too much it will become tough and your scones will turn into rocks
Recipe from Australian Women's Weekly

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Tarragon & Lemon Chicken

So I haven't flown the coup (chicken pun intended!) just was on a little blogging hiatus, but I'm back.

So the other week my soon to be sister-in-law flew into town for the weekend and so the family got together for an evening of food & movies.

As evenings go there are always highs and lows ~

Highs: everyone around / cousins causing havoc / conversations going on everywhere / food, and lots of it

Low: stupid movie

Luckily the highs out numbered the lows and made for a very enjoyable evening.

So on the night I made Tarragon & Lemon Chicken.

This is a dead easy recipe and is perfect if you need to feed a large crowd.

Tarragon & Lemon Chicken


All herbs are fresh

1/4 C Tarragon leaves
1/2 C Flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
1/4 C Thyme, roughly chopped
2 Lemons
2/3 C Virgin Olive Oil
Salt to season
8 Chicken drumsticks

  • Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius
  • In a medium bowl combine the herbs, olive oil, zest from the two lemons and the juice from the lemons, and a pinch of salt
  • Place the chicken pieces in a roasting pan and liberally spread the herb marinade over the chicken
  • Cook the chicken in the oven for about 40 - 50 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked
  • There is nothing like the aroma of fresh herbs, but if you don't have them available dried herbs would still work but not in the same quantities.
  • Use drumsticks or thigh pieces, whatever is your personal preference.
  • This marinade can be easily increased to accommodate 10 pieces of chicken or 20, depending if you're feeding the neighbourhood or not.

Monday, April 26, 2010

ANZAC biscuit

These biscuits were called soldier biscuits until the Gallipoli campaign. Then they were named ANZAC biscuits to commemorate the indescribable efforts of the Anzac's at that time. Now they are a super yummy biscuit that I love making on ANZAC Day.
2 cups of rolled oats
2 cups of plain flour
2 cups of brown sugar
1 1/2 cups of coconut
250g (8oz) of butter
4 generous tablespoons of golden syrup
1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
2 tablespoons of boiling water
Combine oates, sugar, sifted flour and coconut in a large bowl. In a small saucepan melt butter and golden syrup over a low heat. In a small bowl mix soda with boiling water and add to the saucepan with butter and golden syrup. Pour the contents into the large mixing bowl, stir into dry ingredients. Place tablespoons of mixture onto grease proof paper covered cooking trays and allow room for spreading. Cook in a slow oven, about 160 degrees Celsius, for 20 minutes. Slide onto cooling rack and eat them as soon as possible.

This recipe is doubled and makes about 45 biscuits. I always make a double batch because the first batch is always eaten while warm and the cold ones are eaten over the next couple of days.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Honey Lemon Friands & a Winner

Firstly, the winner of that delicious recipe book is.......


Ellen Arthur said...

my favourite place to go for sweet recipes is to call my mum (aunty Chris) and to get the old family favourites. and of course I loooove food blogs, always a winner.

Now straight into the recipe. These little beauties are so moist and moorish, and sticky sweet.

Honey Lemon Friands


6 Egg whites

185gm Butter, melted

2tbs Honey

Zest from 1 lemon

1C Almond meal

1 1/2C Icing sugar

1/2C Plain flour

Honey Syrup

2tbs Honey

1tbs Water

Juice from 1 lemon


  • Preheat the oven to 160 degrees celsius. Grease moulds with a little butter.
  • Place egg whites in a medium bowl; whisk lightly with a fork until combined.
  • Over a low heat, add the butter, honey, lemon zest and stir until the butter is melted. Remove from the heat and set aside until room temperature.
  • Add the butter mixture, almond meal, sifted icing sugar and flour and stir until combined.
  • Fill the moulds and bake for about 12-20 minutes (depending on the size of your mould). Let the friands stand for about 5 minutes before turning onto a rack
  • Honey Syrup: Combine the honey & water in a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Remove the pan from the head and stir in the lemon juice. Allow to cool.
  • Drizzle the syrup over the friands.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Berry Nice.

My sisters laughed at me when I told them I wanted an ice cream maker. Their mocking went along the lines of "Why?" "You'll only use it once." "Where are you going to put it?"

Granted the last one was a legitimate concern as I don't have an awful lot of space. But come on it's an ice cream maker why wouldn't I want one and since I got it a year and a half ago I have used it more than once, so ner. Ice cream makers are awesome.

This week I made raspberry ice cream.

Mix 2/3 cup sugar
230g your favourite berries fresh or thawed
1/4 tsp vanilla
2/3 cup whole milk
in a food processor until smooth and well mixed. Pour into a bowl and stir in
1 1/3 cups heavy cream (35% fat)

Pour into your brand new ice cream maker that you just bought because I told you they are awesome. And wah-lah rich, creamy, tarty berry ice cream.

Remember, to win a great recipe book see the post below.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Some of my favourite things

By the end of last weekend I was done cooking.

Don't get me wrong I loved every minute of it but by Monday evening I was happy to see a take out menu.

So I made Mini Quiches wrapped in Prosciutto for our family picnic on Monday.

The concept I had seen on a food magazine and thought how hard could it be.

It really wasn't hard but the only thing I was disappointed with was that the quiche mixture seeped through the prosciutto and I didn't have the visual effect of crispy prosciutto cups encasing the quiche.

Oh well, they still looked good and tasted even better - the saltiness of the prosciutto & the sharpness of the cheese were a delightful mix.

So before I get to the recipe I have to say ..... I didn't have a recipe and ..... I didn't actually measure any quantities - it's just how I work sometimes.

It really doesn't matter how much cheese or parlesy or bacon you put into the quiches just add enough so that you can taste the flavours.


6 eggs
1 1/2 C milk
Cheese Grated - I used a combination of romano & cheddar
Parsley Finely chopped
Bacon Finely diced
1/2 Onion Finely diced
6 slices Prosciutto


  • Fry up the onion & bacon together until the onion is soft and the bacon is to your liking (I like it to be a little crunchy). Let it cool down
  • Cut the prosciutto in half and using a Texas muffin tray line each muffin hole with the prosciutto. I layed two halves in a crisscross pattern.
  • In a medium bowl add the eggs and milk and whisk until well combine.
  • In Each muffin hole place some cheese, bacon/onion mix & a pinch of parsley.
  • Place the tray in a preheated oven at 180 degrees celsius for about 20 minutes or until the tops of the quiches don't wobble like jelly.

Ok, with that out the way, let's move on..........

Two of my favourite foodie publications came out this week with special editions.

Firstly, Donna Hay came out with a 50th Issue Birthday edition, and what a cover.

The front cover features a Chocolate Buttermilk Layer Cake......HELLO! - you had me at CHOCOLATE.

My second publication ~ Delicious ~ came out with a recipe collection called.......Sweet ~ the ultimate collection.

So, because I'm all hyped up on the excitement of these issues I've decided to give one lucky person their very own copy of Delicious' Sweet.

To enter leave a comment about where you like to go when looking for a sweet recipe. Is it a blog, a website, a publication or a family recipe? If you don't like sweets, that's ok leave a comment you'll still be in the running.

Entries close midnight (Adelaide time) on Saturday, 17th April, and I'll announce the winner with my post next Sunday.

Good luck & happy cooking.

Monday, April 5, 2010

I hope you had an EGG-cellent Easter

We have had a lovely Easter weekend shared with friends & family.

I feel like I just haven't stopped eating - I'm pretty sure the scales will agree.

I hope you've had a wonderful Easter.

New recipes coming soon, and keep an eye out over the next week or so because we'll be running our very first competition.

Isn't it EGG-citing!!
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