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!

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Spring Pizza - Kale, Zucchini, Mushroom and Parmesan on a Rye Base

This is my green machine pizza. I am slowly, but surely mastering the art of pizza. The right base, the right sauce and the right toppings. Last night i catered for my uncle's 50th birthday and I made lots of different pizzas! It's hard to go wrong with a good ol' slice.
Lately, Kale has been a good friend of mine. I use it in my smoothies, eat it with my eggs in the morning and now, i top my pizzas with it.

The thing i love about this pizza is that it stays really juicy from the zucchini and mushrooms while the rye base is nice and nutty and crunchy. Frying the kale in coconut oil, tamari and garlic before putting it on the pizza is absolutely imperative to the flavour!

The Base
(Makes 2 pizzas)
1 1/2 cups. Rye Flour
1 cup. White Flour
1 tsp. Salt
1 3/4 tsp. Dried Yeast
1 tbs. Olive Oil
Luke Warm Water

Combine the flours and salt. In a separate bowl whisk the yeast in to the luke warm water and leave for 5  minutes.
Make a well in the flour mixture and add the yeast mixture and olive oil.
If you have a mixer with a dough hook, use that until the dough is combined, otherwise knead for 10-15 minutes. Place in an oiled bowl, cover and leave to rise in a warm place for half an hour to an hour.
Once your dough has risen, separate it in to 2 and roll out on a floured bench.

The Topping
1 cup Tomato Passata or 1 tin diced tomatoes (I like to cook up some garlic in lots of olive oil and reduce  my passata to a thick garlicy sauce!)
1/4 Bunch Kale
1 1/2 tbs. Coconut oil
1 tbs. Tamari
1 Clove Garlic
1 large Zucchini, sliced
6 Mushrooms, sliced
1 Handful Shredded Mozzarella 
3-4 tbs. Good quality grated or shaved Parmesan Cheese
1 tsp. smoked paprika
1/4 tsp. chili powder
Fresh parsley for garnish
Salt and Pepper

Coat your base in passata and sprinkle with mozzarella. 
Kale: In a frying pan, heat your coconut oil and tamari and fry garlic until soft, add the kale and fry until coated and slightly wilted. 
Zucchini: Brush each slice of zucchini with olive oil and sear on the bbq or fry until brown and slightly tender. 
Cover the base of the pizza with the fried kale and layer the zucchini and mushrooms on top. 
Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with smoked paprika and chili and half of the parmesan.
Cook for 25 minutes or until dough is crispy and cheese has melted.
Before serving, sprinkle the rest of the parmesan on top and garnish with chopped parsley.

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Banana & Muesli Bread With Natural Yoghurt and Maple Syrup

 I've been on a bit of a hiatus lately -a bit of an unintentional break from the old blog. Lots of cooking has happened since my last post, but sadly, no time for photos and sharing. While i haven't been at the screen, I'll have you all know that I have been having a lot of fun! I've moved in to a beautiful mud brick house a little way from my work (where i was previously living) and have been having many a fun time in the sunshine. It is now well and truly Spring! Lots of work and lots of training and a new found passion for rock climbing.... watch this space!

Anyway, that's what I've been up to and I really have been meaning to update you all with a new recipe. Today's is spontaneous  I hadn't planned to cook today or even blog for that matter, but it all worked out so well that I might just share what happened in my kitchen this afternoon.

Banana and Muesli Bread Ingredients
1/3 cup. Almond Meal
1/3 cup. Rice Flour
1/2 Cup Rye Flour (or Gluten Free alternative)
2 tsp. Baking Powder
1/2 cup. Mixed Muesli (oats, nuts, seeds, dried fruit etc)
1 1/2 tsp. Cinnamon
1 tsp. Nutmeg
1/2 tsp. Ground Ginger
4 Very Ripe Bananas, mashed
3 Eggs, beaten
3 tbs. Natural Yoghurt
1 tsp. Vanilla Essence
1/3 cup. Coconut oil melted
1 tbs. Maple Syrup (optional)
1/4 cup. Milk of choice

Preheat Oven to 180-200 and grease a medium sized loaf tin.
In a bowl, combine the dry ingredients. If you do not have muesli, use rolled oats and throw in some sultanas. In a separate bowl, mash the bananas and add all wet ingredients, saving the coconut oil until last. Combine the dry and wet ingredients together and mix through the melted coconut oil. Fill the loaf tin and bake for 45 minutes to an hour or until a skewer comes out clean.

Serve with natural yoghurt and a drizzle of honey or maple syrup. 
 Enjoy this Beautiful Banana Bread for Breakfast, Brunch, or just Because (how's that for alliteration?!)

Monday, 25 August 2014

Buckwheat Porridge with Strawberry Puree and Crunchy Maple Bits

Spring has almost sprung and I can’t say how happy I am to have some sunshine back in my life. My reptile self is warmly welcoming the early change of season and basking in whatever it gives me. So far it’s been very nice.

The other week I bought some buckwheat groats and since then, have been experimenting different uses.  Today was porridge. 
Before I go ahead and talk about the recipe, I’d like you to just divert your attention to the beautiful board on which my porridge sits. 

At the beginning of this month, Cal and I celebrated the anniversary of 5 special years together. Normally, gifts aren’t on the anniversary agenda, we tend to plan exciting adventures or experiences instead so this gift came a little unexpected. When Cal handed this over he told me he'd bought this beautiful piece of Huon Pine in Tasmania 10 years ago! Not sure how it managed to slip under the radar all this time, I'd never seen it in my life. He had sanded it down and oiled it and it is now one of the most beautiful things i own.

So now that the board has been credited, here's the recipe!
Buckwheat really doesn't need all that much tampering with. It's so beautiful and nutty, i stepped away from the spices this time.

Buckwheat Porridge
1/2 cup buckwheat groats
1 cup water
1/2 tbs. apple cider vinegar
1 cup plant based milk
1 tsp. cinnamon
Soak the buckwheat overnight in the water and apple cider vinegar.
Drain and rinse thoroughly.
In a saucepan cook the buckwheat in the milk and cinnamon until the liquid reduces.
You can either keep reducing and eat the buckwheat as it is like porridge or blend it.
I blitzed my warm buckwheat in a blender for a few seconds to achieve a thicker, porridge-like texture.
Alternatively, you can make a raw version which consists of just soaking overnight and then blending. A beautiful cool version for the warmer months to come!

Strawberry Puree
1 punnet ripe strawberries
1-2 tbs. water
Blend strawberries in a blender or food processor and add water until desired consistency is reached. If your strawbs are ripe enough your won't need to add any other sweetener.

Crunchy Maple Bits
1 handful walnuts
1 handful buckwheat groats
1 handful flaked coconut
1/2 tbs. maple syrup

Dry roast the walnuts, buckwheat and coconut until brown. Pour over the maple syrup and stir through.

Enjoy this wonderful porridge in the sun!

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Chai Spiced Pear and Coconut Icecream

This is the easiest ice cream ever. I have an ice cream maker, but i didn't even bother for this recipe. Stew, blitz, freeze, eat. The pears are easily interchangeable with any other sort of stewed fruit like apple, rhubarb, plums, apricots and the list goes on... There's no dairy and no added sugar in this recipe either, just the sugar from the ripe pears. You might even feel okay about eating this ice cream for breakfast... YEAH!

Stewed Pears with Chai Spices
3 Soft pears
1 tsp. Cinnamon
1/2 tsp. Nutmeg
1/2 tsp. Ginger
1/2 tsp. Cardamom powder
1 pinch Salt

Chop the pears roughly. In a saucepan on a low heat, add pears, a splash of water and spices. Cover and simmer until the pears are soft . Don't worry too much about how they look, you'll be blending them anyway. Allow the pears to cool completely.

1 1/2 cups Stewed Pears (or stewed fruit)
3/4 cup Coconut Cream

In a food processor, blitz the pears and coconut cream until combined. Scoop in to a container and store in the freezer. Stir your mixture thoroughly every 30 minutes, 5 times.
Coconut cream freezes pretty solid so remember to take it out of the freezer up to 30 minutes before serving if you don't eat it all in one go!

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Rosemary & Roasted Garlic Popcorn

 I love the thrill of making popcorn. Waiting with bated breath for that first.... POP! Like a ticking time bomb until a whole mine field goes off with tiny little yellow kernels exploding in to big white clouds.

I must say, I've become quite the expert in making popcorn. Cal and I are, you could say, slightly obsessed. Any excuse to make popcorn, we'll make it. The trend started when we were traveling in Berlin. It was the middle of winter and we were staying in a tiny little studio apartment with the bedroom as the only sitting room. Somehow we found ourselves tucked up in bed some afternoons munching down popcorn and watching movies on the laptop. Yeah i know, exciting tourists hey? It was in Berlin that we remembered how exciting and delicious popcorn was and since then we always have kernels in the house.

Today i thought i'd go a little gourmet and jazz up my everyday popcorn. Let me assure you, there is absolutely nothing wrong with plain old buttery salty popcorn, but it probably isn't all that interesting to blog about or take photos of. Hopefully i've inspired some ideas.

 The aim is to get as few unpopped kernels as possible. It takes skill.

How to cook popcorn
1/3 cup popcorn kernels (will feed 2 hungry popcorn eaters)
Oil with  a high smoke point- rice bran, peanut or sunflower. I try to steer clear of canola and vegetable oils.

Put a heavy based saucepan on a medium to high heat and coat the bottom of the pan with oil. Drop in 3-4 kernels and wait. When the first one pops, add in all of your kernels and cover the pot. Keep the heat high, but make sure you shake the kernels around every few seconds or so to ensure they don't stick to the bottom or  burn. Your popcorn is ready when the popping slows and then stops.
How many are unpopped?

Rosemary & Roasted Garlic  Infused Butter
50g butter
2-3 rosemary sprigs
2 garlic cloves
rock salt

Preheat oven to 180-200 degrees. In a baking tray place 2 cloves of garlic, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Roast for about 30 minutes or until soft.

In a saucepan, melt the butter on a low heat and add in the rosemary sprigs and roasted garlic cloves (remove skin from garlic), salt and pepper to taste. stir occasionally and allow the flavours to infuse for 5 minutes or so.
Strain the butter through a sieve on to the popcorn and stir to coat. Don't be afraid to add a few garlic clumps to the popcorn. It's verrrry tasty!

Perfect beer snack, movie snack, day time snack or party snack to wow your friends.

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Mushroom, Caramelised Onion and Goats Cheese Tartlets

Good Morning All!
Posts may start to become scarce over the next few weeks because I'm headin' back up to the hills for work again. It's been nice to bypass a lot of winter work and enjoy some down time in the warmth of my own kitchen, pottering away at my own pace. There's been a lot of room for creativity over the last few months, but now it's back to reality. The kitchen where i live on site at work is small with minimal bench space and and an old, electric stove stop. I'll also have a lot less time for cooking, but I'm going to see what i can do!

Today i thought I'd leave the sweets for some cute little lunch-time (or dinner time, or anytime) Mushroom, Caramelised Onion and Goats Cheese Tartlets. They're a perfect meal size and it means there's no fighting over who got the bigger piece of pie because everyone gets a tartlet to themselves!


Spelt Shortcrust Pastry
makes 4 x 12cm tartlets or 1 small tart
1 cup Wholemeal Spelt Flour
50g Salted Butter
5-6 Tbs. Ice Water

1. In a food processor combine the flour and butter. Slowly add the water until the dough starts to form a ball. Careful not to add too much because the dough will become sticky and hard to work with.
Cover and put in the fridge for at least half an hour.

Caramelised Onions
3 Onions
3-4 Sprigs Thyme
1 Tbs. Balsamic Vinegar

2. In a heavy based pan and add the onions and thyme. Cover and leave on a very low heat stirring occasionally. If the onions become too wet take off the lid. I tend to take the lid on and off during the process. The onions will take about 40 minutes to caramelise. Half way through stir through the balsamic.

The Mushrooms
500g Mushrooms
1 Garlic Clove
Salt and Pepper to taste

3. In a frying pan, heat some oil and add 1 clove of crushed garlic. add the mushrooms and fry until soft.
The Filler and Topper
1 Egg beaten
Splash of Milk
1 Small Handful Chopped Parsley
Small Handful Pine Nuts
30 g Goats Cheese

4. Combine eggs, milk and parsley in a a bowl.

Preheat oven to 180-200 degrees.
Grease your tart form/s. Roll out pastry dough thinly on a floured bench.
Cut out 4 circles about 15cm wide and line each form with pastry.
Add some mushrooms to each tartlet, then onions. Divide your egg filler in to 4 and pour over each tartlet.
Sprinkle each tartlet with Pine nuts and bake in the oven for about 20 minutes.
When the pies are done, crumble the goats cheese over the warm tartlets.

Serve warm

Monday, 21 July 2014

Dark Chocolate Coated Cinnamon Oat Biscuits

Last weekend, i stumbled across an ANZAC biscuit recipe from Wholehearted Eats and got inspired to bake again... I'm a bit obsessed with my mate oven at the moment.
The recipe seemed really straightforward, just like an ANZAC recipe should be and although alternative ingredients have been used to substitute white flour, butter and refined sugar, the traditional wonderful-ness of the good ol' ANZAC hasn't been altered. I must give credit to Wholehearted Eats' blog and her beautiful recipes and photos.

I've decided to step away from the whole ANZAC theme though and call these Oat Biscuits. I don't want to offend anyone with the non-traditional-ness of my recipe, plus i added cinnamon and chocolate for winter warmth... don't think that was readily available during war times...

I prepared these biscuits in my room. I wish i got a photo of me on the floor of my bedroom, stirring and measuring and rolling out biscuits. There's oats all over my carpet! I got home from doing some groceries and was in a bit of a rush to get out again for an afternoon tea I'd planned with my aunties, but when i got home, the cleaner was there. I was trying to tiptoe around her, but cooking in the kitchen wasn't going to work out so i gathered everything and proceeded to put the ingredients together in my bedroom. Not baking the biscuits wasn't an option either- I'd be thinking about them all day! The cleaner was probably wondering where in the world i pulled a tray of biscuits from when I came back in the kitchen to put them in the oven.... I gave her a taste of the finished product though so any qualms she might've had with me must now surely be settled.

Cinnamon Oat Biscuits
Makes 10
1 Cup Rolled Oats
1/2 Cup Spelt Flour
1/2 Cup Unsweetened Dessicated Coconut
1 tsp. Cinnamon 
1/4 tsp salt
3 Tbsp. Raw Sugar
1 Tbsp. Rice Malt Syrup or Maple Syrup

4 Tbsp. Coconut Oil (or butter, both room temperature)
1/2 tsp. Bicarb soda

 2 Tbsp. Boiling Water

30g 75-85% chocolate, chopped and melted

In a bowl combine oats, spelt flour, coconut, cinnamon, salt and sugar.
In a separate bowl combine the syrup, bicarb soda and boiling water. 
With your hands mix the syrup mixture and coconut oil into the dry ingredients until combined. Roll into small balls and flatten gently, but not too much!
Bake in the oven on 180 degrees for around 10 minutes or until golden brown on top.
Leave to cool. The biscuits will be quite soft when you take them out of the oven. Don't be deceived- they firm up once they start to cool. Beware you don't over cook them!
In the microwave or over a double boiler, melt the chocolate.
When the biscuits are cool enough drop a spoon of the melted chocolate on to the top of each biscuit.

Friday, 18 July 2014

Lemon and Poppy Seed Muffins with Lemony Drizzle

 Last market morning we met up with Luisa for our weekly shop. In her little bike basket she brought us a bag of lemons from her tree at her new place! Once again- no better present than a food present. Apparently she also grows mandarins and limes... I might have to go over and pilfer some citrus.

On Tuesday night I went for a long overdue visit to my grandparents for dinner. I can't seem to turn up anywhere empty handed so their invite was a good excuse to cook some more and blog some more. Plus, the lemons needed to be used! I've been day dreaming about lemon and poppy seed muffins for a while now. A bit of zing on a cold day! I also had a bag of poppy seeds and some gluten free flour in the cupboard that had been sitting around for quite some time - convenient.
I wouldn't usually use bought gluten free flour, but I've been testing out different variations of a muffin recipe that i always follow and it was in the cupboard so  i used it. I didn't want to use buckwheat or spelt, because they're too brown for this recipe. Normal flour obviously does the job, but if you are adverse to wheat, you could try coconut flour, oat or rice flour. Or a combination.

The Lemon Drizzle was a nice addition to the muffins too. It gave them an extra bit of lemon zing and moisture.

Grandpa told me he liked treats and grandma politely said the muffins were nice. Luisa came to dinner too and gave the thumbs up- so surveys proved success! Mum's honest approval sealed the deal. So, who wants a Lemon Poppy Seed Muffin?

Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins
Makes about 10 muffins
1 1/2 cups gluten free flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup poppy seeds
1 egg
1/2 cup lemon juice
rind of 1 lemon
1/4 cup milk
3/4 cup olive oil

Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. In a separate bowl, beat egg and add other wet ingredients.
Combine all ingredients together and fill a muffin tin. Bake for about 20-25 minutes.

Lemon Drizzle
4 tbs coconut oil
rind and juice of 2 lemons
2 tbs maple syrup

In a pot melt the coconut oil. Add maple syrup, rind and lemon juice and simmer until the mixture reduces to a thicker syrup. If the coconut oil in the syrup solidifies before you serve it, warm it again on the stove or in the microwave.

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Roasted Beetroot Dip with Chickpea Flour Flat Bread (Socca)

Such a beautiful sunny day today. I'm doing an assignment on weather at the moment where i have to compare the forecast with what actually happens with the weather. Don't think the forecast had this sunshine on the cards. It's lovely!
I've been getting a few things done this week while i've got some time off work. I got the worm farm up and running today finally.
During an afternoon walk in the park today in the sun i was pondering my next recipe-One that was not soup, salad or baked goods and one that could use up the back up of market veggies we have in the fridge.

Beetroot dip and Chickpea flour flat bread came in to mind. I started to potter away in the kitchen, but decided to check quantities for the flat bread when i came across this word 'Socca'. It turns out that chickpea flour flatbread or 'Socca' is actually a thing! I'd never heard of it before. I promptly did some research and from what i've read  the origin of Socca is disputed, but it seems it's a traditional dish from  Nice in France. ALSO it seems that this flat bread is traditionally baked in the oven, then grilled and chopped roughly. So instead of pan frying my flat bread as i usually would. I've tried this whole oven Socca thing!

Roasted Beetroot Dip 
4 beetroots
1 clove garlic
1/2 cup natural yoghurt
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup chopped dill
olive oil
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
Remove the stems from the beetroot and cut in to quarters. In a baking tray drizzle the beetroots and garlic with olive oil and sea salt and roast for about 40 minutes. Or until soft. You may have to remove the garlic before the beetroots are done as it cooks faster and might burn.
Once the beetroots are cooked, blitz them  in a food processor with the garlic and lemon juice. Once combined, stir through the yoghurt and chopped dill and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Chickpea Flour Flat Bread (Socca)
1 cup chickpea flour
1 cup water
1 1/2 tbs olive oil plus more for the pan
1/2 tsp salt

*i've kept the recipe fairly plain because i'm serving it with the beetroot dip which has quite an intense flavour, but in other circumstances i would add things like cumin seeds or powder, paprika, fresh herbs or garlic.*

Whisk all ingredients together and let the mixture stand for at least half an hour. The longer the better.
Coat a heavy based frying pan with olive oil and place in the oven to warm.
Once the oil and pan are warm, pour in the mixture and place under the grill until the top starts to brown. Depending on the size of your pan, you may want to cook the mixture in 2 batches so you get a thinner, crispier crepe. Mine was quite thick.  Cut in to pieces and serve with whatever you want!

Monday, 14 July 2014

Parsnip, Fennel & Leek Soup

It's soup season and i can't get this song out of my head.

Soup, soup
A tasty soup, soup
A spicy carrot and coriander
(Chilli chowder)
Crouton, crouton
Crunchy friends in a liquid broth
I am gazpacho
I am a summer soup
Miso, miso
Fighting in the dojo
Miso, miso
Oriental prince in the land of soup

If you don't know what i'm talking about you should watch more Mighty Boosh:

This is souper easy to make (haha get it?...) and doesn't really take much looking after. Chop, cook, boil, blitz, eat!

Butter or olive oil for frying
1 onion
2 cloves garlic
1 parsnip
1 fennel bulb
3 potatoes
half bunch celery
1 leek
1/3 bottle dry white wine
1 veggie stock cube or just salt and pepper to taste
natural yoghurt or cream for garnish
chives, dill and parsley for garnish

Chop all of your veggies up roughly. Fry onion and garlic until transparent and add in veggies in no particular order.
Pour in white wine, add stock cube and cover the rest with boiling water.
Allow to boil and then cover and simmer until the veggies are soft. About 20-30 minutes.
Blitz with a stick mixer or blend in food processor until smooth consistency.
Add salt and pepper to taste. (You can add yoghurt or cream while you're blitzing for a rounder flavour.)
Garnish with yoghurt/cream and chopped dill, chives and parsley and cracked pepper.

I ate mine with some caraway rye sourdough and loottts of butter!

Enjoy and stay warm!

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Chocolate, Banana & Almond Muffins

 Mmmmm... Chawwwwcklate! I was kind of looking forward to the crappy weather that was forecast for today so that i could justify a day inside baking. It turned out perfectly. I went out for coffee in the morning, the sky was blue and the sun shone on us through the window of the cafe. It felt like an early Spring day. By the time i got home, the cold front had hit. The sky had turned grey and the wind and rain had picked up. Yes! I turned on the oven.

Despite a constant craving for chocolate in winter, I've felt inspired to make these muffins since Green Kitchen Stories' posted their banana, almond and chocolate cake recipe. Their photos define 'Food Porn' and their recipes are always so creative. I've changed up the recipe a bit with a few  different ingredients and i've adapted the quantities to a standard muffin recipe that i always use! It never fails me. Sorry for the second chocolate recipe in a row. I'm sure you won't mind too much!

Standard Muffin Recipe
Makes 10-12 muffins
1.5 cups flour of choice
1/2 cup sugar or sweetener of choice
1.5 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup milk of choice
3/4 cup oil of choice
1 egg

Combine dry ingredients and add any other dry extras such as spices, chocolate bits, nuts, raisins.
In a separate bowl, beat egg and add other wet ingredients. Add any other wet extras such as mashed bananas, grated fruit, vanilla essence, syrups etc.
Combine all ingredients and fill a muffin tin.

Bake on 180 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

Chocolate Banana & Almond Muffins Recipe
1 cup almond meal
1/2 cup buckwheat flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
80g chopped 70% couverture chocolate
1/3 cup raw cacao powder
1 ripe banana
3/4 cup soy milk
1/2 cup coconut oil (i used less than the original recipe because of the banana)
1 egg
1/4 cup maple syrup (again i used less sweetener because of the banana and chopped chocolate)

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl.
In a separate bowl beat the egg and mash the banana. Add the milk, oil and maple syrup and beat to combine.
Combine all ingredients and fill a muffin tin.
Bake on 180 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

The photos make the muffins look a bit dry, but they were actually super moist and the chopped couverture bits melted the whole way through. Eat them warm with a cuppa! The perfect afternoon tea on a grey day.

Saturday, 5 July 2014

Choc-Peanut Butter Thick Shake

 When Cal says he feels like dessert i get excited to make something! It's not often he wants sweets.

Tonight he was after a thick shake....
Hmm, you say. Mikaela + thick shake does not equate. Yep. I did the maths too and came up with something i could 'disguise' as a thickshake and feel alright about drinking it too!

Oh my it was gooooood!

1-2 frozen bananas
1-2 tablespoons raw cacao powder
1 big handful ice
1 tsp maple syrup (optional)
1/2 tablespoon good quality unsweetened peanut butter (if you're allergic to nuts try tahini)
1 1/2 cups soy milk or milk of choice

Blend everything until smooth and icy!
Need i make this post any longer?