Thursday, 26 February 2015

Lamb and rosemary sausages

Makes 10 sausages


500g lamb mince, you could sub for beef, veal, chicken or pork
½ brown onion, peeled
2 cloves of garlic, peeled
Small handful of parsley, you can leave out if you like
3-4 small stems of rosemary leaves taken off the stem, about 2 tbsp or so of leaves
1 tbsp corn flour or other starchy flour such as arrowroot, tapioca, potato or rice flour

Put the onion, garlic and herbs in a food processor until rough chop. Add your mince and flour and pulse until the mince is fine like sausage meat. It will be sticky.  Add ½-1 tsp of pink salt or to taste. Pulse again.

Take out and form into 10 balls, then roll out on a flat board to sausage shape, use your fingers to bring the ends in so the sausage is even and roll so it is nice and smooth. Continue until you have your sausages all done. Place in the fridge until you need them.

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Chicken, Vegetable & Saffron Pilaf

The smell from this cooking was so good! Even the smell can start your digestion, your mouth may water and begin the process!
What I like about cooking in the oven as opposed to on the stove, is that while its cooking you can go and do whatever you want to do and you don't risk burning it! You only need to stir once (if you remember!) This is a pretty cheap, easy and also very tasty dish!

This can be made vegetarian by omitting the chicken and using 1 x 400g can chickpeas.
Serves 4-6

350g chicken thighs, 1.5cm dice
1 cup of white basmati rice
1 brown onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, crushed
500ml chicken broth or other broth to suit
2 carrots, small dice, about 1cm
2-3 stalks of celery, sliced small
½ small cauliflower, chopped small
2 tsp dried thyme or a few sprigs of fresh thyme
1 big pinch saffron threads
2 tsp smoked paprika or sweet paprika


In a large pan or pot put a knob of butter/olive oil and fry off your onion, garlic, carrot, cauli, celery and chicken, until the chicken is just browned, about 3-4 minutes. Add your spices and toss through. Then add your broth and rice, season with salt and pepper, heat your broth in the pan/pot and then transfer it all to an oven proof baking dish. Cover tightly with foil or a lid (I use another tray). Bake at 200c for 35-40 minutes, check it half way and stir. The rice should be tender. I like to serve this by putting a handful of baby spinach on each plate, the heat from the pilaf will wilt it. I also served with sour cream and chopped parsley.

Sunday, 22 February 2015

Mango Weiss Bar

¾ cup granulated sugar
1 cup water
750ml mango puree
1 tablespoon lemon juice
500ml of pure cream, whipped, don't over whip or you will make butter! should be firm peaks.

Combine the sugar and water in a pan, stir over a low heat until sugar is completely dissolved. Then bring the mixture to a boil and boil for 5 minutes, mixture will thicken slightly. Let it cool to room temperature.
Place mangoes into a blender and blend till smooth. Add the cooled sugar syrup and lemon juice and stir until combined.
Combine whipped cream and 1 ½ cups of the mango mixture and pour in a 20cm x 20cm tin lined with foil or plastic wrap. Freeze until firm. There was some leftover so just put this in a smaller lined container and make a smaller one. Put the rest of the mango/sugar syrup in the fridge to keep cool.
Pour remaining mango mixture on top and return to freezer. Freeze until firm.

Cut into slices and store in freezer. (You can use other types of fruit, the fruit should be about 3 cups when pureed)

Baked fish with chili coconut, lemongrass, lime and kale.

Melt some butter and olive oil (about 3 tbsp altogether) in a small pot
In a large pan put half the butter mix and cook a bunch of chopped kale, add 1/2-1 stem finely chopped lemongrass (white part only as the outside leaves are tough) and 2-3 cloves of crushed garlic. Cook for 3 minutes or until wilted. Then add a 270ml can of coconut cream (I use ayam brand) heat through and season well with salt.

In a baking dish put your kale mix on the bottom and top with 4-6 fillets of fish (I have used some wild caught NZ blue grenadier). Then on top of your fish place some slices of lime and chilli. I leave the chilli off the kid's fish. Season well- I have used Jamie Oliver’s thyme, lemon and bay salt but you can just use salt and pepper. Bake at 200c for 15-20 minutes. It’s done when you can flake it easy, yours may take a little less or more depending on the thickness of your fish! Pour any extra sauce on the bottom of the dish over your veg and fish.

I served up with some steamed carrots and broccoli.

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Pan Fried Lamb chops with golden cannellini bean puree and turmeric veggies

The humble legume, shunned by some, embraced by others!
They are high in protein as a plant food with 8.5g protein per 100g cooked and 8.4g fibre!

They are a low glycaemic load (GL) so this means they are a steady steam of energy and won’t spike your blood sugars.

The GL is different to the GI (glycaemic index) in that GI is measuring how much 50g carbs in a certain food raises your blood sugars. So this means you would need to eat 250g cannellini beans to get 50g carbs (per 100g there is 20g carbs) this will give you a GI of 31 which is still low. The GL on the other hand is a measure of a typical serving size which I think gives you a better indication as you are unlikely to be eating 250g cannellini beans!

An 85g serve of beans has an available carb content of 17g and the GI is 31.
31x17/100= 5.2

Low: 10 or less
Medium: 11 to 19
High: 20 or more

You can use this to work out all carb containing foods. But remember we usually eat a mix of protein, fat and carbs so the outcome will be different! Remember the bigger the portion size the greater the GL and the higher the calorie content smile emoticon So if you want rice but don't want to eat as its high GI then just have less of of it and you will decrease the GL

Coat your chops in your favourite spice mx, I have used Jamie Olivers range (again!) You can use any meat or chop you like you don't have to do anything I do. Cook fat side down to render down and crispen up, then cook each side of the chop.

Finely chop 1 tbsp turmeric and 1 tbsp of garlic, mix together and put 1/2 tbsp aside (leaving you with 1.5 tbsp) In a small pot add your 1/2 tbsp garlic/turmeric mix plus a little olive oil and butter and a 425g can of drained and rinsed cannellini beans, fry off for 1-2 minutes and then add 1/2 cup of broth (I used chicken) season with salt, simmer for 5 minutes and then use a stick mixer to blend until smooth. With the other 1.5 tbsp of your spice mix fry off with some chopped bacon, green beans, zucchini, cook for 5 minutes and then add some shredded cabbage and spinach, cook until wilted. Season if needed.

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Apple and pear crumble muffins

Makes 12

1 ¾ cup of spelt flour
100g butter, melted
2 small eggs
2 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup of panella
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 green apple and 1 pear, peeled, core and 1 cm dice
1 cup of milk

Put everything in a bowl and mix until just combined, don’t over mix and it. Spoon into a 12 holed muffin tin, it’s better to line with paper cases unless you have a good non-stick one, or silicon one. Then spoon over your crumble mix and bake at 180c (170c fan forced) for 20 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

Crumble topping
½ cup of spelt flour
60g cold butter diced
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
¼ cup of panella


Pulse briefly in food processor, you still want to see small lumps of butter. Or you can use your fingers and rub the butter through.