Saturday, May 16, 2009

Strawberry Muffins

Strawberry muffins


• 400g plain flour, sifted
• 3/4 cup (165g) caster sugar
• 1 tbs baking powder
• Grated zest of 1 orange
• 1 punnet (250g) strawberries, chopped
• 2 eggs, beaten
• 300ml buttermilk
• 80g unsalted butter, melted, cooled
• Icing sugar (optional), to dust


1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Line a 12-hole muffin pan with paper cases. Mix dry ingredients in a bowl, then stir in berries with a wooden spoon. Mix eggs, buttermilk and butter in another bowl, then add to dry ingredients. Stir to just combine - don't over mix. Pour into pans. Bake for 15-18 minutes until risen and pale golden. Cool. Dust with icing sugar, if desired.

Can substitute milk for buttermilk and chopped white chocolate can be added.

delicious. - February 2008, Page 116
Recipe by Valli Little. Photography by Brett Stevens

Whole orange cake with wine syrup

Ingredients (serves 8)

• 3 large (about 250g each) oranges
• Melted butter, to grease
• 5 eggs
• 315g (1 1/2 cups) caster sugar
• 200g (2 cups) almond meal
• 75g (1/2 cup) self-raising flour
• 1 tsp baking powder
• 375ml (1 1/2 cups) botrytis-style dessert wine (none in Jakarta, so I used sweet sherry...great)
• Double cream, to serve


1. Place 2 oranges in a large saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil over high heat. Drain. Return oranges to the pan and repeat process (this will reduce the bitterness of the peel). Return oranges to the pan once again and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, adding more water when necessary to keep oranges covered, for 1 hour or until oranges are very tender. Drain. Set aside for 2 hours or until cooled to room temperature.
2. Preheat oven to 160°C. Brush a round 20cm (base measurement) cake pan with melted butter to lightly grease. Line the base with non-stick baking paper. Cut oranges into quarters. Remove the white cores and any seeds. Place in the bowl of a food processor and process until smooth.
3. Use an electric beater to whisk the eggs and 215g (1 cup) of the sugar in a large bowl until thick and pale. Use a metal spoon to stir in the orange mixture. Add the almond meal, flour and baking powder, and stir until just combined. Pour into the prepared pan and use the back of a spoon to smooth the surface. Bake in preheated oven for 1 1/4 hours or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Set aside for 5 minutes to cool slightly.
4. Meanwhile, use a zester to remove the rind from the remaining orange. (Alternatively, use a vegetable peeler to peel rind from orange. Use a small sharp knife to remove white pith and cut into very thin strips.) Juice the orange and place in a medium saucepan along with the rind, wine and remaining sugar. Place over low heat and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Increase heat to high and bring to the boil. Cook, without stirring, for 2-3 minutes or until syrup thickens slightly. Remove from heat.
5. Turn cake onto a wire rack over a baking tray. Spoon the hot syrup and orange rind over the warm cake. Set aside for 30 minutes to cool. Cut cake into wedges and place on serving plates. Drizzle with any remaining syrup and serve with double cream, if desired.

Good Taste - November 2005, Page 111
Recipe by Sarah Hobbs Photography by Chris Court

Notes from web site:

• A little time consuming with the oranges, but it was worth it I think! The cake was yummy, so were the aromas! Only used half the sugar and was plenty sweet. As a previous reader said, the whole 375mL is not really necessary for the sauce, you could probably get away with maybe 200mL
• Absolutely Yum! Keeps extremely well for days. Instead of botrtis syrup I did a orange glaze! Yum Yum
• A delicious cake. I used a mini muffin pan so only needed to cook the cakes for 25mins. I didn't have the wine so substituted a large slurp of Frangelica liqueur. I think I may try Cointreau next time.
• Very easy and so delicious! I prepared the oranges the day before which made it much quickerEasy, but time consuming to make.
• Great for entertaining. I would use only 200-250ml wine for the syrup next time and serve the remaining in glasses to accompany the dish, as you end up with too much syrup. I also cooked this for an hour (not 1 1/4 hrs) and it was slighlty overcooked, so watch the cooking time.

Basic pancakes, suitable for kids cooking


1 cup self-raising flour
1 cup milk
1 egg


1. Pre-heat a large non-stick frypan.
2. Place all ingredients into a bowl and mix until just combined.
3. Chill batter in fridge for 30-60 minutes.
4. Lightly grease the pan with butter or cooking spray.
5. Cook large spoonfuls of batter until bubbles burst on the surface and the edges start to go dry.
6. Turn and cook other side until golden brown.

Beef Penang

We have this every week at the moment, the kids LOVE it. We have substituted chicken for the beef and it tastes great as well.

Ingredients (serves 4)
* 800g gravy beef (chuck steak), cut into 3cm pieces
* 400ml coconut milk
* 400ml coconut cream
* 2 tablespoons palm sugar
* 2 tablespoons fish sauce
* 4 kaffir lime leaves, tor
* 1/3 cup (55g) toasted peanuts
* Steamed jasmine rice, to serve
* Thai basil leaves, to serve
Curry paste
* 4 long dried red chillies
* 2 purple Asian shallots, finely chopped
* 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
* 2 fresh coriander roots and stems, finely chopped
* 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
* 1 stalk lemongrass, white part only, finely chopped
* 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
* 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
* 2 tablespoons finely chopped galangal

1. To make curry paste, place chillies in small heatproof bowl, cover with boiling water and soak for 15 minutes. Drain well, then remove and discard seeds. Finely chop chilli. Place chilli, shallots, garlic, coriander and seeds, lemongrass, cumin, nutmeg and galangal in a mortar. Gently pound with pestle until a paste forms.
2. Place beef and coconut milk in a large saucepan over low heat. Cook, covered, for 2 hours or until beef is tender. Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly.
3. Place coconut cream and curry paste in wok over high heat. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until cream begins to split. Add the beef, palm sugar, fish sauce and lime leaves and cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes or until sauce thickens slightly. Remove from heat. Season with fish sauce and palm sugar. Add peanuts; stir to combine.
4. Serve in bowls with jasmine rice, if desired, and garnish with Thai basil.

Notebook: - June 2008, Page 110 .Recipe by Sarah Hobbs. Photography by Ben Dearnley

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Chicken Mango Mayonnaise

Have you ever been to a BBQ, party or buffet etc and seen a bowl of gloppy stuff and think ***** but you take a scoop and when you finally start to eat you nearly fall off your chair in joy?
That is what this recipe is like, a bland looking superstar!

Chicken Mayonnaise

  • 1 Kg Chicken Breasts
  • 2 sticks of Celery finely cut
  • 3 Shallots finely cut
  • 1 Tin Mangos( strained and chopped)
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • ½ cup cream
  • Curry powder to suit ( approx 3 tsp)
  • 1 cup pine or cashew nuts

Cook chicken and chop into small chunks. Add other ingredients. Place in fridge for about an hour. Mould into shape and put onto platter. Decorate with more mango, nuts and parsley.

  • Tinned mango is best for mixture, fresh is best for decoration
  • Substitute BBQ chicken, 1 Xlarge or 2 medium size
  • Best made day before, so flavors can develop

Sticky Date Pudding

I have been making this for years..........we all just love it!
I call the sauce heart attack sauce-pure sugar and fat--mmmm delicious!
I think the original recipe is from a very old dinner party cook book by Australian Women's Weekly.

Sticky Date Pudding

  • 1¼cups(200g) chopped dates
  • 1¼cups water
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 60g butter
  • ¾cup castor sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup self raising flour

Butterscotch sauce

  • 1 cup (200g) brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1 cup of cream
  • 200g butter

Grease deep 20cm round cake pan. Line base with paper, then grease paper. Combine dates and water in pan, bring to boil, remove from heat, add soda, stand 5 minutes. Blend or process until smooth.
Cream butter and sugar in small bowl with electric mixer until well combined. Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Gently fold in sifted flour, then date mixture. Pour in mixture in into prepared pan, bake in moderate oven about 55 minutes or until cooked through. Cover pudding with foil if it becomes too dark during cooking. Stand pudding 10 minutes before turning onto wire rack over oven tray. Pour ¼ cup of sauce over pudding, return to moderate oven, bake , uncovered, further 5 minutes. Serve pudding with remaining pudding.

Butterscotch sauce:

Combine all ingredients in pan, stir over heat, without boiling, until sugar is dissolved, then simmer, stirring, 3 minutes


  • I add 1 teaspoon of baking powder to flour
  • I bake in greased muffin pan, cook for approx. 20-30 minutes
  • I double the sauce mix
  • Freezes well

Beef and lentil slice

Photography by Louise Lister.

The last time we had this dish I had a helper in the kitchen; this person misread the ingredients and added half a cup of salt instead of half a cup of salt reduced stock---do not make this mistake!!!!! Half a cup of salt is gross!!!!!
From Super Food Ideas - September 2007, Page 58 Recipe by Veronica Cuskelly

Beef and lentil slice

Ingredients (serves 4)

• olive oil cooking spray
• 2 slices soy and linseed bread
• 2 small red onions
• 2 carrots, peeled, trimmed
• 450g extra-lean beef mince
• 400g can lentils, drained, rinsed
• 1 egg white, lightly beaten
• 1/2 cup salt-reduced beef stock


1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Spray a 5cmdeep, 20cm (base) square ovenproof dish with oil. Place bread in a food processor. Process to fine crumbs.
2. Finely chop 1 onion and 1 carrot and place in a large bowl. Add mince, 3/4 cup of lentils, eggwhite and stock. Mix until well combined. Press mixture firmly into prepared dish. Bake for 30 minutes or until cooked through.
3. Preheat a grill on high heat. Place slice under grill for 5 minutes or until browned.

I added a few fat garlic cloves and a grated zucchini to the recipe and like others, cooked all the veges down first
I, as well, cooked off the carrot and onion before adding to mix.I cooked off the onion and carrot before combining the ingredients,
I also swapped one of the carrots for a couple sticks of celery

Baked lemon chicken with butter bean mash

I found this recipe on the Taste web site and found it delicious and easy to make, once I tracked down all the ingredients.

The kids aren't too keen on the butter bean mash, but I love it, a very nutty smooth flavour similar to hummus.
I make potato mash for the kids.
The chicken was so tender and juicy.

Photography by Mark O'Meara

Baked lemon chicken with butter bean mash

Ingredients (serves 4)
• 650g chicken thigh fillets, trimmed ( I use chicken tenderloins- it is the easiest for me to get in Indonesia- you could use any cut though, even a whole chicken)
• 1 large lemon, rind finely grated, juiced
• 2/3 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
• 1/4 cup olive oil
• 2 x 400g cans butter beans, drained, rinsed
• 25g butter
• 1/4 cup sour cream
• 1 bunch steamed baby carrots, to serve


1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Place chicken, lemon rind, 1/4 cup lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of parsley, oil and salt and pepper in a large snap-lock bag. Seal bag and shake until chicken is coated in marinade.
2. Lightly grease a ceramic baking dish. Place chicken, in a single layer, in dish. Pour over marinade from bag. Bake chicken for 18 to 20 minutes or until cooked through.
3. Meanwhile, combine beans, butter and sour cream in a saucepan. Using a potato masher, coarsely mash bean mixture. Place over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 4 to 5 minutes or until heated through. Stir in remaining parsley. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Serve chicken with bean mash and steamed carrots

Recipe by Claire Brookman in Super Food Ideas - May 2007, Page 72 .

Jen's Tomato pasta sauce.

I have yet to meet a kid that doesn't like this--even if they say they won't like they end up loving it!
I keep vats of this in the freezer, it's great over any pasta, especially a quick cannelloni throw together as well as over meat or chicken.

When I was a child my mum would make this and leave all the vegetables in chunks, but my kids do not like to see their vegetables lol.
I puree it all and get a velvety smooth rich sauce, rich in vegetables, vitamins and minerals with no nasty additives!

Jen's Tomato pasta sauce.

• 2+ Large onions, sliced or chopped
• Zucchinis, grated or chopped finely
• 2+ cloves Garlic
• Carrots grated or chopped finely.
• Any other vegetables, the more the better
• Can(s) of tomato puree
• Can(s) of tomatoes, whole or chopped.
• Can of tomato soup (optional)
• Oil for frying
• Brown sugar (secret, necessary and vital ingredient, the sugar removes the acid from the tomatoes and makes it kid friendly)
• Seasoning.

Pan fry garlic and onions until soft, ADD brown sugar to caramelize. Add chopped vegetables and fry for 5 minutes whilst stirring. Add cans of tomatoes and lightly simmer for 20 minutes and season to taste. Cool. Blend or process until smooth (kids don’t like to see that they are consuming multiple vegetables). Freezes wonderfully.

Honey, beef and beans from Mrs Pat O.

I remember the day I tasted this (I think I ate about a kg of it it was so good!), it was at the christening of a family friends baby son- James is about 15 now. It is great with mash potato, rice or couscous and freezes wonderfully. I have to puree the beans now as the kids won't eat it if they can actually see a bean but they still love the taste of it.
I have cooked it in the crock pot but I find the taste of it cooked in an old iron camping oven the best. (A camping oven is a thick cast iron pot with a lid that you can put directly on the hot coals of a fire or a European glass cook top!)

Honey, beef and beans.


• 2 level tablespoons of oil
• 2 extra level tablespoons of oil
• 3 level tablespoons of butter/margarine • 2 large onions, finely sliced
• 4 level tablespoons of flour
• salt and pepper for seasoning
• 1 kilogram of beef cut into fine strips
• 2 cups beef stock
• 4 tablespoons honey
• 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
• ½ cup vinegar
• 1 cup tomato sauce / ketchup
• 2 cans of beans (mixed or lima etc)
• 4 tablespoons chopped parsley
• 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger


Heat oil and butter and lightly pan fry onions in a heavy based pan (old iron skillet is the best), then remove from pan. Toss meat in seasoned flour and pan fry until lightly browned using extra oil. Add stock, honey, soy sauce, vinegar, ginger and tomato sauce (ketchup) and simmer on very low heat until meat is tender (60+ minutes). 10 minutes before serving fold through beans and parsley. Season with salt, pepper or extra honey if needed.

Nutty rissoles

I first tasted these rissoles about twenty years ago at Emilia's Vegetarian restaurant in North Curl Curl, Sydney Australia. We had a friend who worked there and as we were moving from NSW, the chef kindly gave us the recipe. ( I will have to find the chocolate beetroot cake in my files- that too is divine and different)

These are divine and if you have a food processor, so quick and easy to make. They need a sauce to go with them; the kids use tomato sauce/ketchup and we use a sweet chilli dipping sauce. I serve with mash potato and a salad.

These rissoles taste even better the next day!

Nutty Rissoles

· 30g of butter
· 1 finely chopped onion
· 1 large clove of garlic finely chopped
· 225g finely chopped mixed unsalted nuts
· 175g finely chopped mushrooms
· 100g chopped fresh parsley
· 2 tablespoons tomato puree or paste
· 100g bread crumbs
· 1 tablespoons Soya sauce
· 1 beaten egg
· salt and pepper to taste
· flour for rolling in

Pan Fry onion and garlic until soft, cool.
Add to large bowl with other ingredients and combine well.
Roll in flour and shape into rissoles.
Set in fridge for at least 1 hour.
Lightly fry in butter.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Beef Stroganoff

Beef Stroganoff

• 1 kg beef in stroganoff strips
• 100g butter
• 250g mushrooms chopped
• 1 small chopped onion
• 250 g sour cream
• Salt and pepper

Sauté onions in pan until clear. Turn up heat and brown beef on both sides for approx 2 minutes, keep pieces on the move at all times.
Remove steak and onion to warm casserole dish. Sauté mushrooms lightly with lid on with more salt and pepper. Return beef to pan and the very second everything is hot again, stir in sour cream. Put into dish and back in a slow oven for one hour.

My notes:

1 I add a clove of crushed garlic.
2 I lightly coat meat with flour before cooking
3 I double the mushrooms and sour cream
4 I cook on stove in a Le Cruset pan which goes from stove to oven so all juices stay in
5 I cook in an extremely low oven with lid on for 2 –3 hours
6 I use olive oil instead of butter

Adapted from an original recipe from “Oh for a French wife”
By Ted Moloney and Deke Coleman 1953

Apricot and Date Loaf

I got this recipe from my Godmother many years ago and it has been one of Gj's favourites ever since. I often make double, and when cooled, cut and freeze individual slices for lunch boxes.

Apricot and date loaf

Put in a large bowl

• ½ cup chopped dried dates

• ½ cup chopped dried apricots

• 125g margarine or butter

• ¾ cup of sugar

• 1 teaspoon of bi-carb of soda

• 1 cup of boiling water

Stir until butter dissolved, add

• 1 egg, beaten

• 1 teaspoon vanilla essence

• 2 cups self raising flour

Put in 2 greased, lined loaf pans and bake in moderate oven for 25-30 minutes. (350ºF or 180ºC)

Hot Artichoke dip

This is one of my most famous and requested recipes, and it is so simple.

I am not overly keen on artichokes but this is delicious.

I always have a jar of artichokes in the pantry and some fresh grated Parmesan cheese in the freezer and I can have this ready in an instant.

I often make a double batch and freeze a serve (uncooked).

This is wonderful served with sliced, crusty french bread sticks.

Hot Artichoke dip

  • 1 jar marinated artichokes, drained and chopped
  • 1 cup of fresh grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup of whole egg mayonnaise (must be whole egg- low fat does not cut it!)

Mix all ingredients and blend or process, a hand processor is perfect.

Put into an oven proof dish and bake for 10 minutes in a moderate oven.

Some oil from Parmesan cheese will rise to the top, drain before serving.

Pears in Red Wine

This is a favourite of mine for dinner parties. I serve it with double cream and or vanilla bean ice cream. It is a great way to get the kids to eat fruit- all the alcohol burns off during the cooking- so it quite suitable for all.

  • 6 Beurre Bosh pears ( brown, firm skinned)
  • 1 Bottle red wine
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 dsp cinnamon
  • 1 dsp cloves (ground &/or whole)

Bring wine, sugar, cinnamon and cloves to boil. Peel pears and cut bottoms to flatten. Roll pears in sauce, then simmer with lid on for 45-60 min. Turn every 15 min. Remove pears and boil sauce to reduce by half. Pour over pears and cool.

the better the wine , the better the result.
O.K. to freeze.
Simmer for less time if using green or soft pears

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Balsamic beef with green beans & mash

The slightly sweet balsamic sauce adds rich flavour to this modern-day version of meat and three veg.


1kg orange sweet potato (kumara), peeled, cut into 2cm pieces
1 tsp olive oil
4 (about 125g each) beef fillet steaks, excess fat trimmed
125ml (1/2 cup) balsamic vinegar
60ml (1/4 cup) salt-reduced beef stock
60ml (1/4 cup) water
8 fresh corn cobbettes
250g green beans, topped


Place the sweet potato in a large saucepan and cover with cold water.
Bring to the boil over high heat and cook for 10 minutes or until tender.
Drain and use a potato masher or fork to mash until smooth.
Season with pepper.
Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat.
Add the steaks and cook for 2-3 minutes each side for medium or until cooked to your liking. Transfer to a plate and cover loosely with foil.
Set aside for 5 minutes to rest.
Add the vinegar, stock and water to the pan.
Bring to the boil over high heat.
Boil, uncovered, for 6-7 minutes or until the mixture reduces and thickens slightly.

While the sauce is cooking, place the corn in a steamer basket over saucepan of simmering water. Steam, covered, for 5 minutes.
Add the green beans to the basket with the corn and steam, covered, for a further 4 minutes or until the vegetables are just tender.
Divide the sweet potato mash among serving plates.
Top with the steak and drizzle over the balsamic sauce.
Serve with the steamed corn and green beans.

Photography by Sue Ferris
Australian Good Taste - February 2007, Page 32
Recipe by Alison Roberts

Balsamic chicken with spinach and cherry tomatoes


• 500g chicken breast fillets, trimmed, thinly sliced
• 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
• 1 tablespoon brown sugar
• 2 garlic cloves, chopped
• 1 tablespoon olive oil
• 250g cherry tomatoes
• 100g baby spinach leaves
• 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves


1. Place chicken in a large, shallow, glass or ceramic dish. Season with salt and pepper. Whisk vinegar, sugar and garlic in a small bowl. Pour over chicken. Turn chicken to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes, if time permits.
2. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook chicken, in batches, for 2 to 3 minutes or until browned and cooked through. Remove to a plate.
3. Add cherry tomatoes to pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes or until tomatoes start to soften. Return chicken to pan. Add spinach. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes or until spinach is just wilted.
Top with basil leaves.

Super Food Ideas - November 2007, Page 80
Recipe by Michelle Noerianto

Basil Pesto, chicken and fettuccine


• 200g dried fettuccine
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• 2 single chicken breast fillets, thinly sliced
• 2 tablespoons basil pesto
• 1 cup tinned, skim reduced milk
• Sliced green vegetables (zucchini, broccoli, snow peas, asparagus etc)
• shaved parmesan, to serve
• basil leaves and pine nuts, to serve


1. Cook fettuccine according to the packet directions.
2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large, non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes or until brown. Add in vegetables and stir fry.
3. Add pesto, tinned skim reduced milk, salt and pepper to frying pan. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cook for 5 minutes, or until sauce has thickened slightly.
4. Drain pasta. Add to pesto mixture. Toss over low heat until well combined. Transfer to serving bowls.
5. Top with parmesan and basil and pine nuts.
6. Serve warm with a side salad.

Based on a recipes from:

Super Food Ideas - September 2003, Page 11
Recipe by Annalise Curran, Essendon, Vic (reader recipe)

Photography by Mark O'Meara

Spiced peaches


1 large tin peach halves
1 Stick cinnamon
1/3 cup vinegar
½ large orange, sliced with skin
1 teaspoon of whole cloves
1 teaspoon all spice
½ cup sugar

Drain peaches, reserving ½ cup syrup.

Tie spices in small pieces of cheesecloth.

In saucepan, combine reserved peach syrup, vinegar, sugar, orange slices, peaches and spices. Heat to boiling, simmer uncovered 5 minutes.
Cover and let cool at room temperature. Remove spice bag.
Serve peaches warm or chilled.
Stud with a few whole cloves if desired.

Excellent served with hot roast pork and/or cold meats and seafoods.

Serves 6.

Sri’s Spectacular Salmon curry

Sri’s Spectacular Salmon curry

3 red chilies(size depending on how hot you want it)
2 teaspoons coriander seeds
2 teaspoons pepper corns
2 pieces of ginger (size of a little finger)
2 pieces lemon grass
2 pieces turmeric (size of a little finger)

Grind all above ingredients together to make a paste

2 bay leaves
2 kaffir lime leaves
2 tablespoons of fresh chopped basil
1 teaspoon of brown sugar
1 can coconut cream
400g salmon steaks.
Oil to cook with.

Cut salmon into 2 cm squares
Heat oil in wok until hot and cook paste until smells good.
Add lime leaf, lemon grass, and coconut cream (can add I/2 cup of water if too thick).
When bubbling/boiling add salmon and fresh basil. Cook until just done (approx 2 min). Too long and salmon will crumble.