Sunday, January 29, 2012

New celebrity food crush

Hugh Fearnsley -Whittingstall. Your name is rather, well posh. Not really your fault I suppose. With a name like that I would expect your food to completely inaccessible. Its not, its lovely!

OK...thats enough of the fan girl. I picked up the new River Cottage Veg from work this week and it is packed full of accessible recipes that even the most ardent meat eater would love. It also explains to meat eaters WHY they should eat less meat AND is by someone that actually likes meat (as opposed to moi).

Gorgeous photos, intro's that include food sustainability without being overly preachy and fantastic food...what's not to love?

So far I've cooked a yummy baked eggplant and Porotos Granados (Chilean Bean Stew) and thinking tomorrow may be a beetroot soup. I wouldn't normally try so many new recipes a week...but they all look so good and so easy!

I made the stew with few modification......I didn't have enough corn so chucked in a red capsicum and through in a tomato....just because I thought it needed it. I also used dried oregano and bog standard paprika.

Monday, January 16, 2012

A fridge full of salmon and a koala in a gumtree

Three weeks after Christmas I'm sure everyone wants to forget about it for another year and get on with paying off the debt, so I'll keep this short.
Mini CC!
Presents were opened and parental interests were foisted on the young.

Like most people in the privileged western world we stuffed ourselves on Christmas day. Somehow for 6 adults (and 3 little people) we ended up with Ham, Turkey and Salmon sitting on the table. Add to this the salads, nibbles and deserts and I'm surprised we were able to move afterwards. 

We have recently rediscovered the joys of  potato salad  thanks to egg free mayonnaise. I know, i know if it doesn't have eggs it ain't mayo...but if it quacks.  98% fat free from Praise and I love Coles are both egg free and vegan too! (Aldi is egg free but has rennet) anyway the point is I got to eat potato salad for three days. 

Despite living in Australia, this is the first Koala I have seen in the wild. No they are not on every street corner. 
Uninvited dinner guest

We also had three days of salmon thanks to the smallest fish available being 4kg! And so the creative use of leftovers begins! 

I cooked the salmon pretty simply in the first place (giant roasting dish, butter, lemon dill, splash of white wine) so was able to turn the leftovers into pasta, pie and pancakes. Om nom nom!!!

Salmon pie and pumpkin scones
Since the Christmas season brings my parents and my brothers birthday I also used the great old style kitchen to make pumpkin scones for a birthday brunch. I love Belinda Jeffery's recipe  although I seldom use buttermilk and usually use milk with a tablespoon of vinegar. My scones have come out a little flat after I ran out of baking powder (arrowroot and a bit of extra bicarb seemed to work as a substitute) however they still tasted great!

The salmon pancakes were super easy. We just used the regular pancake recipe and chucked in some salmon! Served with a dollop of sour cream and some chives they were a decadent brunch. 

Salmon Pancakes
The salmon pie was another easy one. A simple shortcrust pastry, top with a salmon mornay and they some mashed potatoes. I'll write out a proper recipe for this later (it's a fall back that we eat variations of regularly)

Vintage 70's thrifted skirt and matching Christmas pressies (not deliberate I swear!)

Happy washer-upperer

Thats it for Christmas!! Hope yours was just as great as ours!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Not so silly..........

So this years season can be considered pretty straight in the silly terms. Guess that's what happens when the midgets begin to rule your world.

This year we went to visit my folks on the mid north coast and despite the weather (yep, go north for the weather and end up with rain!) had a brilliant week of family and feasting.

We stayed in National trust listed house with tonnes of vintage style, took advantage of the crap weather and did lots of cooking and spent time being a family without the pressures of the day to day.

Cooking Pancakes

Morning started with pancakes...made by the incredible husband. He does pancakes much better than me...I cook most of the time, but his pancakes blow mine out of the water. So here is his recipe.

Ricotta Pancakes 

2 cups flour (1 plain, 1 wholemeal)
2 tsp baking powder
1 3/4 cups milk
3 healthy dollops of ricotta with a tablespoon
2 eggs or No egg substitute

Dump it in a bowl, mix it up, don't get fancy with it. Heat your hotplate to halfway on the dial, ladle palm sized servings into a hot buttered frying pan and replace butter as it gets soaked up. Flip when they pancakes start to bubble on top. Don't screw around, commit and flip.

Serve with lashings of everything but especially maple syrup.

This time we had berries, usually its bananas.

New Christmas tradition

Presents followed and after Nanny, Poppy and my brother and his little family arrived we got down to the serious business of eating. Ham and Turkey for the meat eaters and a 4kg Salmon for the not really vegetarians.

Now which one is mine.......all of them!
I love cranky monkey face!

Stay tuned for more exciting Xmas!!!!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Shiny red kitchens.

Yes, this is my shameless plug to win a kitchenaid. I will pimp myself for prizes. But hey, can you blame me? Matchbox ran a competition to a new shiny, mixy, did I say SHINY! kitchenaid. And I love my red kitchen porn, so of course I entered. And I got to make a fool of myself in public (in my lunch break at work, where they are used to me making a fool of myself on a regular basis).

The competition was to dress up in my fave vintage frock and have my photo taken in public (preferably in a matchbox store). There are no matchbox stores near where I live, so I figured I'd create a montage of fabulous frocks, in various locations with me holding my dinky cardboard cutout. This was all I managed, since it was the week before Christmas and the rest of life got in the way (more on Christmas later).

Dress: 70's polyester thrifted
Belt: 80's vinyl thrifted

I would of liked to of worn something 50's inspired, but this is what I wore to work that day and I still think it works.

So, if I don't win at least I got to have a laugh in the process.


N.B Thanks to the Organized Housewife for featuring the comp.

I didn't win the mixer....but I did win a Kitchenaid blender!!!!!