Thursday, 7 May 2015

Strawberry and Rhubarb Lemonade

Last Saturday i was getting ready for the next issue of Kimi Magazine- the "Red Issue". Normally i'd be opting for the savoury recipe out of the two featured recipes, but Joanne beat me to it with a delicious tomato upside down tart with basil and feta - so good to eat after the shoot!
It was hard to think of a sweet recipe that was red and would stay red, wouldn't look like a pile of sloppy mess for the camera and wasn't some sort of pie.

I brought it down to Strawberry and Rhubarb Lemonade. The photos turned out great, but you'll have to wait until October to see the pro's photos by Georgia Wiggs.

All was smooth sailing as i was making the lemonade. The mixture was almost at a boil, steam was floating up from the saucepan and yummy strawberry smells were starting to fill the kitchen. Everything was going great until i watched the stove flicker and then go out. After several attempts at re-lighting the stove and several calls to the gas company, the gas still wasn't working and the stove would not light again... for another day or two. That makes for interesting cooking.
 Not to worry, i left the lemonade to stew in it's own pulpy goodness for a bit longer before straining.
If you can avoid having your stove go out on you, please follow the below instructions!

Strawberry and Rhubarb Lemonade
4 cups rhubarb (3-4 sticks), chopped small
4 cups (500g) fresh strawberries, halved
rind of one lemon
5 cups water
120 g raw sugar
juice of one lemon
juice of one lime
soda water (optional)

In a saucepan combine rhubarb, strawberries, lemon rind and sugar. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat, add the lemon and lime juice and simmer for about half an hour.

Strain the liquid through a sieve and discard the leftover fruit (or use it in a smoothie or muffins). Store lemonade in an airtight container in the fridge. It will keep for about a week
Serve on ice with fresh mint, lemon and strawberries to garnish.

If you like your lemonade a bit fizzy (as i do), add a splash of soda water to your lemonade.

Friday, 1 May 2015

Red Lentil Dahl

 About 2 years ago, as i was aimlessly scrolling through Facebook, i stumbled across a post about Kimi Magazine. Intrigued by this magazine i'd never heard of, i kept reading. All i could really gauge was that it was based in Melbourne, it had a little food section and all the profits from the magazine were given to Eating Disorders Victoria. In my daily endeavours at the time to expand my blog audience, i immediately contacted whoever i could about Kimi Magazine and said something along the lines of "Hi, love what your magazine is about, love where the profits are going. I write a food blog, are you interested in some recipes?"  and voila! I must have been in the right place at the right time because as it turns out, Kimi had only just released their first issue and WERE interested in some recipes.

I went along to the signing of the first issue and discovered that the driving force behind Kimi, was just one girl, my age, doing something really special for a very sick best friend. After a few chats with Ciara (creator of Kimi) we agreed on a recipe for the next issue- "The World Issue".

Sticking with what i knew i decided to make a warming dahl recipe that i learned when i first went vegetarian. It's super simple and yummy!

Red Lentil Dahl
2 -3 tbs peanut or sunflower oil for cooking
1 onion, diced,
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 cm ginger, grated
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 1/2 cups red lentils, rinsed and drained
4 cups boiling water
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp chili powder
salt to taste

Fry the onion, garlic and ginger in cooking oil until transparent. Add the turmeric, and then the lentils. Stir to coat the lentils. Cover with 4 cups boiling water, bring to the boil and lower the temperature to a simmer. Partially cover and stir occasionally for about 40 minutes. You may need to add more water depending on the cosistency you like. When the lentils are soft, add in the salt, garam masala and chili powder.

Serve on basmati rice with yoghurt and fresh coriander.

Perfect Rice
I generally measure rice by 1/2 cup per person you are feeding.
Rinse and drain rice.
In a saucepan, add the rice and double the quantity of water - e.g 1 cup rice = 2 cups water.
Bring to the boil. Once the rice is boiling, stir and then reduce the heat to the lowest setting.
Cover and leave to cook for 12 minutes. DO NOT LIFT THE LID!
Your rice should be soft and fluffy when the 12 minutes is up!

These photos are taken  by the wonderful Daniele Martinie who spent hours with us, trying to make something as sloppy and yellow as Dahl look as wonderful as it does above!

Thanks so much to Ciara and Dani for the opportunity.

I'll be seeing Ciara again tomorrow for the photo shoot for the next issue of Kimi which is coming out towards the end of the year! 

Sunday, 26 April 2015

Taranaki Farm and the Vision.

This blog is a little different from all the rest.
It's been a little while since i last posted and unfortunately it will probably be a little while until i post again. This year has been super busy with outdoor ed work, trips, training and assignments and not a huge amount of time to share new food adventures. Being busy is only a temporary distraction though and i assure you, the passion is still there- alive and strong!

This weekend marked the start of some real research in to what has only ever been a dream for me. The beginning of the search for the perfect bit of land for what will eventually be our own self-sufficient home/ b&b/ farm? We haven't quite got that far... something with plants, food, animals, beer, wine cheese, cellar, larder?

What better way to mark that beginning than with an inspirational day at Taranaki Farm in Woodend, learning how the simple movement of animals can help to heal and regenerate the land. Joel Salatin said today "the land cries for caress" and that's exactly what Taranaki Farm are doing in such simple ways. We met the cows, or "beautiful innocuous bovines" and the egg-mobile which can be shifted with the movement of the cows. We met the pigs the egg-layers and the broilers and we checked out their new farm shop or "rural distribution centre" for legal purposes! Although we have a slightly different vision (less animals, more food and brew) It was really nice to see a vision for sustainable farming practices put in to action which gives us hope that these things are doable!

Costa Georgiadis told me to "share it", so i am. I'm sharing my dream of being self sufficient, of living off the land, growing, cooking and eating my own. Brewing and drinking my own too (thanks Cal) and then eventually, feeding other people with what we have so lovingly created. It all sounds a bit hippy lala, but i'm feeling pretty inspired, full of opportunity and super lucky to be able to even start looking at land! This will hopefully evolve over the next year (watch this space) and maybe updates will become more and more frequent as we get more excited about this new adventure.

When this all gets off the ground running, who would you like to come and build with us in return for some homemade goodies?

Monday, 22 December 2014

Mini Wallaby Burgers with Homemade Chili Jam and Beetroot Relish

 This is my first ever meaty recipe to feature on my blog. I'm feeling pretty excited to share it with you because i think it marks a big movement in my vegetarianism.

For the last 8 and a bit years i have been a non-meat-eater. Quite strict for the majority of that time and at some points, vegan.
In the last year i have been questioning my morals, working out why i choose to eat what i eat and challenging why I've started to eat some meats.

I'd like to say i consciously live a sustainable lifestyle. My main issue with the meat and dairy industry IS the industry itself and the impacts it has on our environment. The scale of meat consumption and the farming practices involved are pretty frightening. Whilst eating meat is not currently sustainable, i believe that if everyone had the same attitude towards meat and dairy as myself and a lot of others do, then meat-eating probably wouldn't be so hideous. For all those vegos out there- please continue. It's always going to be true that when you eat an animal, it has to die first and a plant-based diet is always going to be more sustainable. I don't eat meat often and i'm very picky about it too.

If you are at all interested in reading about meat the Sustainable Table website have some incredible resources to read.

So without, writing a lengthy ethical essay, I'd like to share with you my Mini Wallaby Burgers with the Homemade Chili Jam and Beetroot Relish that we were given as Christmas gifts yesterday.

Wallaby Burger
500g Wallaby Mince
Half White Onion, diced
1 Handful Fresh Parsley, chopped fine
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 Egg, beaten

Stir the onion, parsley, salt, pepper and egg in to the mince and leave to rest for at least half an hour.
Roll in to small patties (my mix made 9) and grill on the BBQ or fry lightly in oil for about 3 minutes on each side.

I served my burgers on mini sourdough rolls with shaved Parmesan, homemade chili jam, beetroot relish, fresh salad greens and sprouts.
You can't serve burgers without some sort of potato. We had rosemary and smoked paprika wedges with a garlic aioli. Oh and a beer!

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Frozen Yoghurt - 3 Ways

Last week i was in Hobart having a bit of a city holiday- eating and drinking and reclining. It seems I'm quite attracted to the Hobart lifestyle. Much like Melbourne, Hobart's food and coffee scene is inspired and trendy. Much UNlike Melbourne though, is the slower pace of the city and the amount of water around! Ahh... Island life!

In my eating adventures around the Tassie city, I came across a cool Frozen Yoghurt place called Vita: Nature+Culture which is owned by the Creators of Ethos Eat Drink and Provedore (all next door to each other.) To be honest, I'd never jumped on the FroYo bandwagon so this was my first experience. It was so yum and the flavours were so interesting, i was inspired to make my own when i got home.

Here are the recipes to Frozen Yoghurt 3 Ways. This is so easy to make, I'm kicking myself I hadn't thought of doing this before! In these recipes, i have used some ripe fruit that i had at home, but be creative and use what you've got!

Nectarine Frozen Yoghurt
2 Ripe Yellow Nectarines
2 Ripe White Nectarines
1 cup. Organic Natural Yoghurt

Cherry Frozen Yoghurt
150 g Fresh Cherries, Pitted
1 cup. Organic Natural Yoghurt

This Method applies to both of the above recipes.
In a food processor blitz the fruit (without the pips) until you reach a smooth pulpy consistency. Stir through the yoghurt completely, transfer to an airtight container and put it in the freezer to set. Stir every half an hour and repeat 4 or 5 times.

Honey (Hobart Wildflower) and Cinnamon Frozen Yoghurt
1 1/2 tbs. Honey, melted if it's raw
1 tsp. Cinnamon
1 cup. Organic Frozen Yoghurt

Stir the melted honey and cinnamon through the yoghurt, transfer to an airtight container and put it in the freezer to set. Stir every half an hour and repeat 4 or 5 times.


Saturday, 1 November 2014

Spicy Bean Tacos with Cabbage Slaw

I have been craving tacos since last week. During my cooking class at camp last week i asked the kids what their signature dish would be if they were on a cooking show. One boy proceeded to tell me all about these incredible tacos he would make. Since then i haven't stopped thinking about making taaaaccccos so tonight was the night to satiate that craving.

My cousin (second cousin actually) from Scotland is visiting at the moment and like me, she's very much food obsessed. This recipe is a joint creation from the both of us.

*Note- You will need lots of limes for this!
Spicy Beans
2 tbs. cooking oil
1 large clove garlic
1 red onion
2 tsp. smoked paprika
1 tsp. cumin powder
1/4 tsp. chili powder
2 tbs. tomato paste
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 large capsicum, diced
juice of 1 lime
salt to taste

Heat oil in a saucepan and add onion and garlic until fragrant. Add the spices, tomato paste, beans, capsicum and diced tomatoes. Cook on a medium heat until the flavours are incorporated. Squeeze lime juice and season with salt.

Cabbage Slaw
1/4 Red Cabbage
2 carrots, grated
handful fresh coriander, finely chopped
1 zucchini, grated
1 cucumber, grated
Half onion sliced thinly
Juice of 1-2 limes
1 tbs. red wine vinegar
pinch raw sugar
2 tbs. sesame seeds, toasted

Combine all the vegetables and coriander in a large bowl. Dress with lime juice, red wine vinegar, raw sugar and sesame seeds.

Goats Cheese Guacamole
1 large avocado
few sprigs fresh coriander, finely chopped
1 tbs. goats cheese
Juice of 1 lime
salt and pepper to taste

Mash avocado and add all other ingredients.

Garlic Mayonnaise Sauce
1/2 cup good quality mayonaise
1 clove garlic
juice of half a lemon
fresh chives, chopped

To Serve
1 packet gluten free corn tortillas
Chopped fresh chilies or jalapenos 
More chopped limes for serving

Heat tortillas in a pan on a low heat or in the microwave and assemble as desired!