Monthly Archives: November 2013

Rum Balls

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I will be honest, I don’t eat these because I find it too sweet. Those with a sweet tooth however seem to love this.  I am specifically putting this post up for my cousin – the last time I made these, she actually hid the container so she could scoff them on her own – no names but she knows who she is….:-)

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Ingredients

  • 1 packet arrowroot
  • 400g condensed milk
  • 2 tbsp cocoa
  • 1 cup coconut flakes or hazelnuts 
  • 1-2 tsp rum

Method

Crush biscuits till they are very fine crumbs. Combine all ingredients except coconut and mix together. Roll into balls and lightly coat with coconut.  

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Prize Winning Fruit Cake

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This recipe did win a prize in 1937.  This is my favourite fruit cake and I have been baking this for a long time. It takes a little bit of effort but it is definitely worth it.

IngredientsOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

  • 500g sultanas
  • 500g currants
  • 250g chopped raisins
  • 125g glace cherries halved
  • 1/3 cup mixed peel
  • 185g blanched almonds
  • 1/3 cup orange marmalade
  • 1 tbsp grated orange rind
  • 2 tsp grated lemon rind
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2/3 cup brandy
  • 500g butter
  • 500g brown sugar firmly packedOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  • 8 eggs
  • 3 cups plain flourOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  • 1 cup self-raising flour

Method

Combine fruit, almonds, marmalade, rinds, juice and brandy in a large bowl; mix well. cover bowl, stand mixture for up to a week.  Cream butter with sugar in a large bowl with electric mixer only until ingredients are combined. Beat in eggs one at a time, beat only until combined between each addition.  Add creamed mixture to fruit mixture, mix well; mix in sifted flours in 2 lots.

Spread mixture evenly into deep 25cm square or 28cm round prepared cake tins. Bake in Slow oven 150 deg C for 3-5 hours. Tip: I wrap newspapers around the tin to keep the cake from burning or drying out – refer photo on post.

Note: Oven temperatures vary and my cake cooks in 2.5 hours in my fan forced oven. Start checking your cake at the 2 hour mark.

 

Mix and Melt Fruit CakeCake

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This is the first time I have baked this particular fruit cake. The recipe is straightforward and there is no soaking of fruits for a week.  With the help of my friend’s daughter who very kindly spent half a day teaching us all about fondant, I was able to decorate the cake .

Ingredients

  • OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA1.5 kg mixed fruit, chopped
  • 1/2 cup run
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, coarsely grated
  • 1 tbsp honey or golden syrup
  • 1 cup brown sugar firmly packed
  • 4 eggsOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  • 250 g butter , meltedOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  • 1 1/2 cups plain flour
  • 1/2 cup self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp mixed spice

Method

Place mixed fruit in large bowl, then add run, apple, honey, sugar and eggs and mix well.  Stir in cooled butter, sifted flours and mixed spice. Spread the mixture evenly into a deep 19cm square or 23 cm round prepared cake tin. Bake in a  slow oven 150 deg C for 2-3 hours.   Note: This is a really old recipe and oven temperatures vary, so please start checking if your cake is cooked by the 2 hour mark.  

 

33 days to Christmas

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“I have always thought of Christmas as a good time; a kind, forgiving, generous, pleasant time; a time when men and women seem to open their hearts freely, and so I say, God bless Christmas!”  Charles Dickens

For the next few weeks my blog will be about Christmas.

Coming soon are Christmas Cakes, White Chocolate lemon lime truffles, rum balls, shortbread, Devika’s Caprese salad, Aussie BBQ Ham, Stollen, Roasted lemon and thyme chicken, a variety of salads and it goes on….look out for it – Starts Monday!!!!

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Eggs with Chorizo and Asparagus

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We had this for brunch over the weekend…….it does taste as divine as it looks.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup chorizoOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1 Egg white
  • 1 chilli de-seeded and diced
  • 1/4 cup cheese
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1/2 dozen sticks of asparagus
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp butter
  • salt to season
  • handful of fresh chives chopped

Method

Eggs: Dice chorizo and fry in a heated a frying pan till it becomes slightly crispy. Drain on paper towel. Crack eggs in a bowl, add the egg white, milk, salt  and whisk. Add 3/4 of the chorizo and 1/2 the chopped chives to the mixture.  In a frying pan heat oil  and 1 tsp butter. Pour in the egg mixture and cook for a minute, add cheese and cook for another minute or so before taking pan off heat.  (We like our eggs firm so we cook it for at least 3 mins.)

Asparagus: Heat remaining butter in a frying pan, throw in the chilli and cook for 1/2 minute, add asparagus, toss for 1-2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper if you wish.

To serve, Place eggs on toasted sourdough, with asparagus on the side and  garnish with remaining chives and chorizo.

 

 

Blueberry Friands

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Friands

My husband’s favourite…..this is definitely something I make with a lot of love.

Ingredients

  • 180g butter melted
  • 200g Icing Sugar
  • 60g plain flour
  • 120g Almond Meal
  • 5 Egg whites
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup blueberries

Method

Heat oven 200 deg C.  Sift icing sugar and flour in a bowl then add almond meal. Lightly beat egg whites with fork until bubbles form and fold into dry ingredients.  Don’t over mix.  Add butter and zest.

Butter friand tins well. (10 large or 15-20 small).  Fill mould 3/4 full and top with berries.

Cook in over 9 minutes then turn and cook for further 9 minutes. Leave in mould for 5 minutes before turning  out.  Dust with icing sugar before serving if you wish.

Fish Curry with aubergine and peppers

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I cooked this over the weekend, yum, yum, yum – there is nothing else to say…

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Ingredients

  • 3 pieces of firm white fish fillets
  • 1 Onion
  • 2 large tomatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 cm piece fresh ginger
  • Generous handful of fresh coriander
  • 1/4 green capsicum
  • 1/4 red capsicum
  • 1 small aubergine
  • 3 chillies
  • 2 tbsp desiccated coconut
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 3-4 tbsp olive oil
  • 200 ml can coconut cream
  • 120 ml water

Method

Cut each fish fillet into 2-3 pieces. Cut onion, tomatoes into quarters. Place onion, tomatoes, garlic, ginger, coriander stalks, chillies, coconut, and spices into a food processor and blitz into a paste.  Cut aubergine into little cubes and capsicum into thin strips. Heat oil in a frying pan.  Fry aubergine in batches for 3 minutes till they slightly golden. Drain on a paper towel.  Heat oil in a deep pan, add paste and fry for 3 minutes until paste separates from oil.  Add coconut milk and water and bring to boil. Add aubergine, and capsicum and fish  Lower heat and cook uncovered for 5-7 mins.  Add lemon juice  and season to taste.  Garnish with chopped coriander leaves.  Serve with rice.

Cucumber Raita

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I have kept this simple. It’s great as a side dish.  You can add finely chopped chillies and coriander to this if you wish.

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup natural yoghurt
  • 1 tsp roasted ground cumin
  • 1/2 cucumber grated
  • salt – season to taste

Method

Whip yoghurt so it is creamy. Dry roast cumin seed and grind.  Squeeze excess water from cucumber.  Add cumin, cucumber and salt to yoghurt and mix well.  Serve as a side dish.

 

 

Rice with tomatoes and spinach

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I really enjoy the simplicity of this dish.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIngredients

  • 1 Bag baby spinach
  • 2 cups basmati rice
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1-2 tsp salt
  • 1 red onion finely sliced
  • 2 Red chillies finely chopped
  • 2 Tomatoes finely chopped
  • 31/2 cups chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

Method

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWash rice several times until water runs clear, then drain. Heat oil in a deep saucepan.  Add onions and cook for 6 minutes or until golden brown and slight caramelised. Add chillies, cumin and turmeric and cook for a further minute.  Add rice and stir for another minute.  Add tomatoes, spinach, and butter,season to taste.  Add stock, give it a stir and bring to boil.  Reduce heat to lowest setting, cover and cook for 20 mins or until rice is cooked. Garnish with toasted pine nuts. I served this with a cucumber raita.

Tuna and Potato Puffers

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This is affectionately known as puff pastry samosas, but I decided to give it a new name.  I have been making this forever and it is definitely a crowd pleaser.

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Ingredients

  • 425g canned tuna in brine
  • 6 Ready rolled puff sheetsOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  • 2 large potato peeled and diced into small cubes
  • 1 small brown onion diced finely
  • Handful fresh coriander
  • 3 Birdseye chilli – diced finely
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/4 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp garam masalaOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp minced ginger
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 – 2 tbsp oil
  • 1/3 cup water

Method

Take Puff pastry sheets out of the freezer to thaw.
Heat oil in a deep frying pan or wok.  Add mustard and cumin seeds to oil and fry for 30 seconds.  Added diced onion and chillies, and fry till onion softens. Add coriander stalks, garlic, ginger,turmeric, ground coriander and cumin. Fry for another minute, then add potatoes, and salt, give it a good mix add water and bring to boil  lower heat to medium, cover and cook for 7 – 10 mins  or until potatoes are tender.  Add garam masala and tuna to the potato mix and cook for another 7 mins. Mix through chopped fresh coriander leaves.  Allow tuna and potato mixture to cool.

Cut each pastry sheet into 9 squares.  Ensure that you keep the sheets covered with a damp cloth to prevent it from drying out. Place a teaspoon of mixture onto each square. Take two corners of the square and bring it together to form a triangle. Seal edges by pressing it together.

Brush each triangle with oil and bake in a hot oven 200 deg C  for 20 minutes until golden brown. Serve warm with mint chutney or whipped natural yoghurt.