Sunday, 30 November 2008

Chai Carrot Cake

For the cake
300g | 10.5oz soft light brown
300ml | 10fl oz melted coconut
3 large eggs
300g | 10.5oz  flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp salt
300g | 10.5oz grated carrots
   (about 3 large)
100g | 3.5oz pecans, roughly
100g | 3.5oz raisins or sultanas
4 chai teabags
For the chai caramel
125ml | 1/2 cup chai tea (see above)
200g | 7oz brown sugar
125g | 4.4oz double cream, heated in microwave for 30 seconds
125g | 4.4oz créme fraiche
2 tbsp butter
Mascarpone frosting
500g | 1.1lbs full fat mascarpone
200g | 7oz icing sugar
100g | 3.5oz chai caramel (see above)
3-5 tbsp double cream
  • Steep the chai tea bags in 250ml (1 cup) boiling water for 10 minutes. Discard the teabags and add the raisins. Leave for a couple of hours or overnight until they are plump. Strain and keep the tea for making the caramel.
  • Preheat the oven to 180C (350F). Grease and flour bundt pan
  • Put the sugar, oil and eggs in the bowl of your mixer and beat for two minutes until the ingredients are incorporated.
  • Sift the flour, spices, salt, soda and baking powder into a bowl. Gradually add to the mixing bowl while beating on medium-low speed. Increase the speed once everything has been added and beat for a minute.
  • Stir in the grated carrots, pecans and raisins and pour the batter in the prepared bundt pan.
  • Bake for 25 minutes or until the cake is springy to the touch and coming away from the edges of the tin. Cool in the tin for 10 minutes before carefully turning out onto a cooling rack.
  • Make the caramel: Bring the tea and sugar to a boil in a deep sided saucepan. Continue to boil for several minutes until a thermometer reads 150 C (300 F).  Reduce heat slightly and when the caramel reaches 175 C (350 F) take it off the heat and add the double cream - be very careful it will bubble volcanically! When it calms down a bit add the créme fraiche and butter and mix together with a balloon whisk until smooth. Cool before using.
  • To make the frosting: Put the mascarpone, icing sugar and caramel in a bowl and beat with your mixer on the lowest speed setting until combined and then increase the speed and gradually add the double cream. Beat until the frosting is smooth and forms firm peaks.

Pork Loin with Caramelized Fruit

1 kg / (2 1/4 pounds) pork
150 ml / (1/2 cup and 2
   tablespoons) olive oil
150 ml / (1/2 cup and 2
   tablespoons) white wine
100 ml / (6 3/4 tablespoons)
8 cloves of garlic
Pepper (to taste)
2 tablespoons honey x 2
1 tablespoon Spicy mustard
Salt (to taste)
For the fruit:
2 apples
2 pears
4 strawberries
2 kiwis
4 pineapple slices
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons sugar
1 pinch of cinnamon

  • Season the meat with salt, pepper, crushed garlics and white wine. Leave to marinate for about one hour.
  • Place the pork loin in a glass baking dish along with the marinade. Drizzle with the olive oil and water and bring to preheated oven at 180°C / (350ºF) about an hour. Occasionally drizzle the meat with their own sauce.
  • Meanwhile, wash and peel the fruit. 
  • In a skillet, place the fruit cut into pieces along with the honey (two tablespoons honey), sugar and the cinnamon. Stir and bring over low heat about 30 minutes until caramelize. Stir once in a while.
  • In another skillet, place the honey (two tablespoons honey), pepper and the Dijon mustard. Stir, bring to low heat and simmer about two to three minutes. Stir once in a while.
  • Turn off the oven and serve the meat drizzled with the honey sauce and the caramelized fruit.

Chinese Chicken Spaghetti

12 ounces spaghetti
1 tablespoon cornstarch
¼ cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 tablespoons rice wine
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 tablespoon oil
2 pounds boneless, skinless
   chicken breasts, cut into bite
   size strips
2 cups snow peas
2 cups shredded carrots
1 bunch green onions, chopped

  • Cook pasta to al dente, according to package directions.
  • Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together cornstarch, soy sauce, sesame oil, vinegar, ginger and red pepper flakes. Set aside.
  • In a large wok, add oil and stir-fry chicken until juices run clear. Remove to a plate and set aside.
  • Add snow peas and carrots and stir-fry until crisp tender, about 5 minutes. Add green onions, and stir together.
  • Return chicken to pan and toss with vegetables. Stir in soy sauce mixture and add pasta to wok, tossing to combine. Serve immediately.

Thursday, 27 November 2008

Maple Berry Sausages

2 Tablespoons Fresh Sage, Chopped
1 Tablespoon Fresh Thyme, Chopped
1 teaspoon Garlic Salt
1 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Black Pepper
½ teaspoons Crushed Red Pepper Flakes (more If You Like It Spicier)
1 pound Ground Pork
½ cups Fresh Blackberries, chopped
2 Tablespoons To 3 Tablespoons Maple Syrup

  • In a bowl, combine the sage, thyme and spices. Stir well. 
  • Next add the pork, blackberries and syrup.
  • Form into patties. 
  • Fry them first in a skillet and then finish them off in the oven for about ten minutes to ensure they are cooked through.
I use this recipe when I'm making Scotch Eggs.  It's a wonderful combination with the eggs!

Sweet & Sour Chicken

6 medium carrots, cut into 1/2" chunks
1/2 cup finely chopped green peppers
1 small onion, finely chopped
3 boneless chicken breast cut into bite size pieces
1/2 teaspoon salt
10 oz. jar Sweet N Sour Sauce
1 (15 oz.) can of pineapple chunks, drained
2 tablespoons cornstarch

  • Place all ingredients in slow cooker/Crock Pot with chicken on top. 
  • Cover and cook on low 6-8 hours. 
  • Add 2 tablespoons cornstarch dissolved to a medium thick paste with water. 
  • Cook an additional 20-30 minutes
  • Serve with steamed white or brown rice.

Tuesday, 25 November 2008

Zoodles & Sauce & Sausage

1 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
5 - 6 cloves of garlic, minced
3 tomatoes, chopped
1 head cauliflower, washed
   and chopped into pieces
3 cups chicken broth
1/4 tsp chili flakes
Salt and Pepper to taste

1 good-sized zucchini per
¼ tsp sea salt per zucchini
1 tsp olive oil per zucchini

1 tsp olive oil
Cooked spicy sausage (4 - 7),
   cut into bite sized pieces
1 small onion, chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 cups green beans, cut into bite sized pieces

  • Sauce: In a big pot, heat the oil on medium.
  • Add the onions and saute for a couple minutes until they start to get soft. Add the garlic and saute for 1 minute. Add the chili flakes.
  • Add the tomatoes and stir them for a couple minutes. Then add the cauliflower and the broth and bring to a boil.
  • Cover and simmer the sauce till all the vegetables are very soft. Remove from heat.
  • Puree the mixture. 
  • Pour it back into the pot and season with salt and pepper to taste. 
  • Zoodles: Heat your oven to 350 degrees.
  • Use a spiralizer to make noodles out of your zucchini
  • Lay them on a paper towel lined cookie sheet and sprinkle with Sea Salt and top with another layer of paper towels.
  • Throw them in the oven for about 15 minutes. When you take them out, blot them with the paper towel to get rid of excess moisture.
  • Toss them in olive oil or coconut oil. (This will prevent them from getting soggy)
  • Dish:  Heat the olive oil in a pan on medium heat.
  • Add the the onion and saute for a few minutes.
  • Add the green beans and tomatoes and stir for a couple minutes. 
  • Then add the pre-cooked spicy sausage.
  • Pour in the cauliflower sauce and stir well.
  • Then you can either put some zoodles on a plate and pour the sauce on top, or you can add the zoodles to the sauce first and then serve. 
  • Top each plate with parmesan or other choice cheese

Chicken Pot Pie Turnovers

2 tablespoons butter
1/2 onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons dried thyme
1 tablespoon flour
1/2 cup white wine
1 cup chicken stock (I use a
   bouillon cube and a cup of
   hot water and then don't add
   extra salt)
1 teaspoon Dijon or spicy
2 tablespoons parmesan cheese
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 cups cubed or shredded cooked
   chicken (I fry the chicken cubes
   with some chopped garlic & olive oil or butter first thing before doing anything)
1/2 cup dried cranberries
2 sheets puff pastry, thawed if necessary
Flour for dusting

  • I'll usually make the insides of the turnovers the night before and then keep it in the fridge until the next day, so one will have to decide when is the appropriate time to preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. 
  • Melt the butter in a large saute pan over medium heat. 
  • Cook the onions, carrots, and celery with salt and pepper, to taste, until the carrots soften, about 10 minutes. 
  • Add the garlic and thyme and cook for an additional minute, stirring frequently. 
  • Add the flour and cook about 1 minute more to cook off the flavour. 
  • Turn up the heat to medium-high and deglaze the pan with the wine. 
  • Whisk in the stock and mustard and parmesan cheese. 
  • Add the peas, chicken, & cranberries and cook on a very low simmer until the sauce thickens up into a gravy, about 5 to 10 minutes. 
  • Remove from the heat and set aside. 
  • On a lightly floured surface, unfold each sheet of the puff pastry dough and cut into four even squares. You should end up with 8 squares. 
  • Place the squares on a baking sheet and spoon about 1/8th of the chicken mixture in the centre. 
  • Fold the squares diagonally to create triangles. 
  • Pinch the edges together to create turnovers. Press the edges with a fork to seal them and make them look pretty. 
  • Cut a small slit in the top to allow the steam to escape during baking. 
  • Bake the turnovers until golden brown, about 30 minutes. 
  • Let cool at least 10 minutes before serving as the insides will be very hot.

Sun-Dried Tomato & White Bean Burgers

1 or 2 egg
1 regular can of white beans, rinsed and
1 cup cooked quinoa
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 or 3 heaping tablespoons roughly
   chopped sun-dried tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 cup packed fresh basil, chopped
3 teaspoons flour
1/3 cup grated Parmesan
Big pinch Chili powder
Salt and freshly ground pepper

  • Crack egg into a large bowl and beat well. 
  • Add the beans and, using a potato masher, mash them together with the egg until relatively smooth but with some chunks remaining. 
  • Fold in the cooked quinoa. 
  • Then add the rest of the ingredients.  Mix until combined. 
  • Roll small handfuls of the batter into balls a little smaller than the size of a golf ball and press them down to form a patty about 3 inches in diameter. 
  • Note: If you're having trouble getting your burgers to adhere, add another egg and mix to combine or add a small amount of flour, just a little at a time, if the mixture is too wet.
  • Grease a pan and heat over medium. Cook the patties about 3 minutes a side, until golden brown. 

Faux Burmese Soup

2 tablespoons oil
1 medium red onion, diced
1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 pound boneless skinless chicken, cubed
1 tablespoon masala spice
1 tablespoon Patak type paste
2 large puréed tomatoes
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 cups broth (chicken or vegetable)
1 cup coconut milk
1 medium zucchini, chopped in bite size
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
1 cup chopped cauliflower
2 medium thinly sliced carrots
6 ounces rice or other Chinese noodles (medium thickness)
4 eggs (to be hard boiled in the soup)
1 lime

  • In a medium saucepan, heat the oil, add the red onion, and cook for about five minutes, until soft and wilted. Keep stirring until the onion begins to turn pale golden at the edges. 
  • Add the finely grated ginger and the garlic and mix well. 
  • Add the chicken, masala & patak and mix well. Cook the chicken for about 2 minutes, until no longer pink. 
  • Add in the puréed tomatoes and soy sauce. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes. (Note:  If needed you can purée the tomatoes with the soy sauce & a bit of the broth).  
  • Mix in the broth and the coconut milk and simmer for 5 minutes. 
  • Add the zucchini, red bell pepper, cauliflower, carrots, and the shelled raw eggs and simmer until eggs are hard boiled.
  • Remove eggs and de-shell.
  • Add in the noodles and cook until they're al dente.
  •  Cut the lime, squeeze the juice into the soup, and add in the de-shelled chopped hard boiled eggs.
  • We usually freeze some of this and after thawing we add water before heating up on the stove-top or microwave.

Saturday, 22 November 2008

Oatmeal Raisin Peanut Butter Cookies

1 cup butter
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar (firmly packed)
1 egg
1/3 cup maple syrup (or pancake syrup)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
dash of salt
1 1/2 cups rolled oats (old- fashioned or quick-cooking)
1 cup raisins

  • Heat the oven to 350° F. Grease baking sheets or line with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  • In a large mixing bowl with electric mixer, cream butter, peanut butter, and sugars until light and fluffy; beat in egg, syrup, and vanilla.
  • In a separate bowl sift together the all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt. With the mixer on low speed, beat the flour mixture into creamed mixture until well blended; fold in the oats and raisins.
  • Drop the dough by teaspoons or small cookie scoops onto the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches between cookies.
  • Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until lightly browned.

Friday, 21 November 2008

Blueberry Orange Streusel Cake

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3 eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
finely grated rind of 1/2 orange
1/2 cup ground almonds (optional)
1 generous cup of blueberries
1/2 cup all purpose flour
2 Tbsp butter, softened
2 Tbsp sugar
finely grated rind of 1/2 orange

  • Preheat over to 325 degree F. 
  • Grease a 9 in springform pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.
  • For the topping, put all the ingredients in a bowl and mix with a fork to make a crumbly mixture.
  • Place the flour and baking powder into a large bowl and add the butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla extract. 
  • Beat well until the mixture is smooth, then add the orange rind, ground almonds (if using), and half the blueberries.
  • Spoon the batter into the prepared pan, smooth level with a spatula and sprinkle with the remaining blueberries. 
  • Spread the crumble topping evenly over the top, covering completely.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes, or until risen, firm and golden brown. 
  • Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then remove the sides of the pan and finish cooling on a wire rack.

Cranberry Pecan Crackers

2 cups raw pecans
1 cup dried cranberries 
1 egg
1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
1 - 2 teaspoons sugar
Couple dashes of salt

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees ºF.
  • Place the pecans and cranberries in a food processor and combine until pecans look like coarse sand. 
  • Add the egg, oil, sweetener and salt to the mixture and pulse until combined and dough forms.
  • Place the dough between two pieces of parchment paper and roll out to about 1/8 of an inch thick.
  • Using a pizza cutter or sharp knife, cut crackers into desired size.
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned. Thinner crackers will cook faster and you may need to remove outer edge crackers before you remove the inner crackers.
  • Let cool to crisp up and store in an airtight container.

Thursday, 20 November 2008

Chocolate Tiramisu

6 ounce container mascarpone cheese
2/3 cup whipping cream
1/2 cup sugar
Chocolate Zabaglione, recipe below
2-1/2 cups espresso coffee, warmed
24 crisp ladyfinger cookies
Unsweetened cocoa powder, for garnish
Dark chocolate shavings, for garnish
  • Place the mascarpone cheese in a large bowl and set aside. 
  • With an electric mixer, beat the cream and 1/4 cup of the sugar in a medium bowl until soft peaks form. 
  • Fold the whipped cream into the mascarpone. 
  • Then fold in the chilled Chocolate Zabaglione (see recipe below). 
  • Cover and refrigerate. 
  • Whisk the warmed espresso and the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar in another medium bowl until blended. 
  • Line a 9 1/4 by 5 by 2 3/4-inch metal loaf pan with plastic wrap, allowing the plastic to extend over the sides. 
  • Working with 1 cookie at a time, dip 8 cookies into the espresso, and arrange in a single layer side by side over the bottom of the prepared pan. 
  • Spoon 1/3 of the mascarpone mixture over the cookies to cover. 
  • Repeat dipping 8 of the cookies in the espresso and layering the cookies and remaining mascarpone mixture 2 more times. Dip the remaining 8 cookies in the espresso and arrange side by side atop the tiramisu. 
  • Press lightly to compact slightly (the last layer may extend above the pan sides).
  • Cover the tiramisu with plastic and refrigerate at least 6 hours. 
  • Unwrap the plastic from atop the tiramisu. 
  • Invert the tiramisu onto a platter. 
  • Remove the plastic. 
  • Sift the cocoa over the tiramisu, and with a vegetable peeler or sharp knife, make dark chocolate shavings and sprinkle over top.

Chocolate Zabaglione:
2 tablespoons whipping cream, or heavy cream
1/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
4 large egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup coffee or chocolate liqueur 
Pinch of salt 

  • Add cream and chocolate to a heavy small saucepan. 
  • Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until the chocolate chips are melted and smooth. 
  • Set aside and keep warm. 
  • Whisk the egg yolks, sugar, liqueur, and salt in a large glass bowl until blended. 
  • Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, but do not allow the bottom of the bowl to touch the water. 
  • Whisk the egg mixture over the simmering water until it is thick and creamy, about 4 minutes. 
  • Remove from the heat. 
  • Using a large rubber spatula, fold the melted chocolate mixture into the egg mixture.
  • Cover and refrigerate to chill completely.

Feta & Sun Dried Tomato Swirls with Pesto

1 x 375g sheet of ready rolled all butter puff pastry
3 heaped tbs pesto*
100g feta, crumbled
50g sun dried tomatoes, sliced lengthways
1 egg, whisked
A little plain flour for dusting

  • Pre heat the oven to 180 degrees C
  • Dust a clean tea towel with flour and roll out the pastry on it.
  • Spread 3 tbs of pesto (or more?) onto the pastry leaving a little room around the edges.
  • Sprinkle the feta on to the pesto and then add the sun dried tomatoes.
  • Roll the pastry tightly from the long side, with a bread knife cut off the uneven edges at both ends.
  • Cut the rolled pastry into slices, about 2cm thick.
  • Place the slices, flat side up, on Pam(ed) baking tray(s) 
  • Brush with the egg wash then bake in the oven for 15 - 20 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown.
  • When cooked leave them to cool on the baking trays for a few minutes then place then on a wire tray to cool further.
  • Serve warm or cold.

See Broccoli Pesto


Pesto Made from Anything (almost) Green

3 cups of combination (any or all) of greens (lemon balm, parsley, basil, baby
    spinach, strawberry tops, carrot tops, lettuce)
3 (or more?) garlic cloves
1/4 cup cashews, peanuts, pine nuts, what-have-you?
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
lemon juice
salt & pepper

  • Put everything into your food processor except the lemon juice, olive oil and cheese.
  • Give it a whirl, adding first the olive oil and then squirts of lemon juice. 
  • Taste and add salt & pepper, more lemon (?)  Maybe a few capers?  How about a dash of fish sauce?
  • Keep in glass jars in the fridge or freeze.

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Ginger-Almond Baked Salmon

1/4 cup raw almonds
2 garlic cloves
½ inch fresh ginger, peeled
¼ cup fresh herbs (mint, parsley, and/or chives)
6 tablespoons extra virgin coconut oil, at room temperature
   (i.e. not melted)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
Zest of 1 lemon, plus 4 wedges
4 (5-ounce) salmon fillets
Sea salt

  • Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
  • In a small food processor or blender, pulse the almonds, garlic, ginger, and herbs until finely ground. Transfer to a medium mixing bowl and stir in the coconut oil, soy sauce, and lemon zest.
  • Arrange 4 pieces of parchment paper, a little less than the length of a baking sheet, on a clean work surface. Fold each piece of paper in half, length wide. 
  • Making each packet one at a time, unfold your piece of parchment paper and arrange the salmon on half of the parchment paper. Season with salt and smear with ¼ of the almond crust. Fold the top half of the paper over the salmon and fold the edges, origami-style, until the packet is sealed. It will look kind of like an empanada.  Make sure your folded edges have clean creases.
  • Arrange the packets on a baking sheet and roast in the oven for 15 - 20 minutes.
  • Service with lemon wedges on the side

Monday, 17 November 2008

Whiskey a Go-Go Cake

9 oz butter (2 sticks), room
9 oz dark brown sugar
5 eggs
1 1/2 cups ground almonds
1 fullish cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch sea salt
1-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cardamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
pinch ground cloves
pinch of allspice
1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon Whisky
2 tablespoons runny honey
Juice of 1 lemon
1 cup) Icing sugar
2 - 4 tablespoons Whisky

  • Grease & then flour a 2.4 litre bundt tin well, set aside and pre-heat the oven to 160C (325F).
  • Cream together the butter and sugar until smooth, creamy and fluffy. Scrape down with the bowl with a spatula.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, scraping down the bowl with a spatula before adding the next egg.
  • Fold through the ground almonds, flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, cloves and allspice and mix until thoroughly mixed.
  • Scrape the batter into the tin and bake for 40-50 minutes or until a cake tester inserted with a spatula comes out clean.
  • Leave the cake in the tin for 10 minutes before removing and leaving the cake to cool.
  • Once cool make the syrup: Combine all these ingredients in a small saucepan and set over a low heat. Once it starts simmering remove from the heat.
  • Prick holes with a sharp steak knife over the entire cake and spoon or brush the syrup evenly over the cake, leaving it to soak in.
  • Once cold, drizzle over the glaze: In a medium bowl add the icing sugar and then add enough whisky to make a thick but pourable glaze. 

A Bunch of Great Salads

Last Updated:  May 11, 2014

   Angel Hair Pasta Salad
   Asian Chopped Salad
   Broccoli, Cranberry, Cashew Salad
   Brussel Sprout Pecan Cranberry/Apple Salad
   Butternut Squash, Carrot, Apple & Cranberry Salad
   Carrot & ? Salad
   Carrot & Pea Salad
   Chicken/Cranberry Salad
   Chicken/Raisin Salad
   Chinese Noodle Salad
   Creamy Tuna Salad
   Green Bean & Salmon Salad
   Mango/Chicken Salad
   Mango/Strawberry Salad
   Noodle Salad
   Pasta Salad
   Roast Vegetable & Couscous Salad
   Spinach & Pine Nut Salad
   Teriyaki Chicken Salad

Ctrl+F (PC) or Command+F (Mac)
      to get where you want to go


Creamy Tuna Salad

2 cups (smaller size) bow tie pasta
1 tablespoon oil
1 red onion, diced 2
2 cloves garlic finely diced
1 red papper, diced
3 celery sticks, sliced & diced
1 x regular size tin of niblets corn
1 x 425 g tin tuna in spring water

½ cup creamy ranch dressing
1 cup mayonnaise
2-3 tablespoons dried parsley

Cook pasta following directions on packet.
Heat oil in a frying pan and sauté onion and garlic until onion is transparent.
Add red pepper and cook for 1-2 minutes.
Add celery and corn and cook for a further 1-2 minutes.
Drain pasta and add the vegetable mix.
Allow to cool completely.

Dressing: Combine all ingredients and mix well.

Once pasta and vegetable mix is cool add the tuna and dressing and stir through.
Serve cold.

Noodle Salad

4 x 85 g packets 2 minute Chinese noodles, discard flavour sachets
1 regular can sweet corn niblets, drained
1 regular can peas, drained
½ red pepper, diced
½ yellow pepper, diced
finely diced green onion to taste

¾ cup mayonnaise
½ cup mild salsa
2 tablespoons light brown sugar

Break up noodles into small chunks and cook in boiling water for 2 minutes, then drain.  Combine dressing and then add dressing and vegetables to noodles.  Mix well.  Refrigerate until needed.

Roast Vegetable & Couscous Salad

1 cup cut bite size pumpkin or squash
1 cup cut bite size baby new potatoes
1½ cups chopped vegetables e.g. zucchini, parsnip, carrot, red pepper
6-12 cherry tomatoes
⅓ cup couscous
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon spicy brown mustard

Place all vegetables except, tomatoes, on a baking tray. Coat lightly with cooking spray.
Cook at 200°C for 40 minutes.
Add tomatoes and cook for 10 minutes more.
Meanwhile, prepare couscous according to directions but without butter or oil.
Whisk together oil, garlic, vinegar and mustard.
Mix vegetable, couscous & dressing.
Can be refrigerated and eaten cold or warmed up.  We preferred warmed up in microwave.

Angel Hair Pasta Salad

200 g angel hair pasta
1 large red or yellow pepper, sliced into thin strips & then bite size
1 small cucumber, cut into bite size pieces
Chopped chives to taste
1 tomato, cut into bite size pieces
1 small can niblets corn kernel
¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
½-1 avocado, diced or sliced (optional)

4 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons ranch dressing
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
½ teaspoon Cajun style spice (optional)
2 teaspoons chilli powder

Cook pasta as per packet directions, drain, and place pasta in a cool mixing bowl.
Prepare the dressing ingredients and mix thoroughly. Set aside.
With a knife & fork, cut through pasta so pieces are more manageable.
Prepare remaining ingredients except the avocado and place in the bowl with the pasta. 
Pour dressing in with the pasta and mix thoroughly.
If desired, when serving prepare the avocado and toss over the top of the salad.

Teriyaki Chicken Salad

4 (4 oz.) skinless, boneless chicken breasts halves, cut into thin bite size strips
3/4 C. Teriyaki Sauce
1 med. cucumber, peeled, thinly sliced and cut into bite size pieces
2/3 C. sliced green onions
1 tsp. dried red chile peppers flakes
1/2 C. unsalted dry-roasted peanuts
Lettuce leaves

In a shallow glass dish, Mix together chicken and teriyaki sauce. Toss to coat. Refrigerate for 30 min.

Add chicken to skillet. Discard marinade in dish. Saute chicken over med. heat until no longer pink, about 3 to 4 min. Stir in cucumber, green onions, chili flakes, and peanuts. Saute for 1 min. longer. Remove from heat.

Arrange lettuce leaves in a single layer on a servings platter. Spoon chicken mixture over lettuce.

Can be served immediately or chicken mixture can be refrigerated and served cold later.  A simple herb, oil & vinegar dressing is good with the cold salad.  

Spinach and Pine Nut Salad

½ butternut pumpkin or any kind of squash, cut into bite size pieces
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
Garlic salt
Mixed herbs (your preference; we use something called Greek Spice)
6 slices of bacon, diced
2 chicken breast, cut into bite size pieces
1 x 70 g packet pine nuts
250 g feta cheese, diced
100 g semi sundried tomatoes, diced
160 g baby spinach leaves, rinsed
  • Roll the pumpkin through a mix of oil, pepper, garlic salt and mix herbs to dress, then place on a baking tray and bake at 200°C for 20 minutes. 
  • Toss diced chicken through the same oil mix and bake for 30 minutes.  (See note re bacon)
  • Turn both during cooking.
  • Fry bacon until crispy. (or you can throw the bacon in with the chicken while it's cooking)
  • Allow above to cool a bit.
  • Combine spinach, feta, tomatoes and cooked ingredients and toss.
  • Use the oil from the tomatoes if salad requires dressing. 
  • Serve warm or cold. 

Chinese Noodle Salad

4 eggs
½ lettuce, sliced and then chopped into reasonably sized pieces
1 x 425 g corn kernels (drained)
1 x 100 g packet Chinese instant noodles (without flavour packet) uncooked but broken into pieces
Egg mayonnaise, to taste

Boil eggs, then dice or chop
Place all ingredients in a salad bowl
Add mayonnaise & mix
Can be eaten immediately (noodles will be slightly crunchy) or refrigerated and eaten later (noodles will have softened)

Pasta Salad

500 g bowtie pasta
6 slices of  bacon, chopped
2 red/orange/yellow peppers, chopped
1 cup sundried tomatoes, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 x 250 g block mozzarella cheese, cubed
½ cup pinenuts, toasted (or not)
2 tablespoons dried oregano
1 x 250 g cherry tomatoes, halved

⅓ cup olive oil
2 tablespoons white vinegar
1 teaspoon white sugar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tsp. garlic salt
2 teaspoons French mustard (or any other (as my daughter says: fanchy) mustard)
  • Cook pasta to packet directions. Drain and pour into large serving bowl.
  • In a large frypan, cook bacon, peppers and sundried tomatoes for 5 minutes. Toss with cooked pasta.
  • Add remaining ingredients
  • Mix dressing ingredients together and pour over salad. 
  • Mix well. 

Carrot & Pea Salad

4 cups chopped carrots
4 cups peas
1/2 cup finely chopped green onion
1 cup finely chopped tomato

½ cup mayonnaise
1 cup yoghurt
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce

Bring 8 cups of water to the boil in a saucepan, and add carrots and peas.
Boil for 2 minutes then strain and place into chilled water.
Drain and place in salad bowl.
Add onion and tomato.
Blend dressing ingredients and pour over salad.
Set aside for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Broccoli, Cranberry, Cashew Salad

1 head broccoli, stalks removed and cut into 3 cm pieces
1 cup cashews (roasted or salted as to your taste) slightly crushed
1 cup dried cranberries
½ red onion, finely chopped (optional)
½ cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon vinegar (I like to use fancy
   vinegars, i.e.  pineapple/strawberry
couple dashes of sugar

Place broccoli, onion, cranberries and cashews in a salad bowl.
Mix the mayonnaise with the vinegar & sugar in a separate bowl and stir through the salad ingredients.
Cover and allow to rest until cold.

Mango/Strawberry Salad

1 carton fresh strawberries
1 large mango
Baby spinach leaves, to taste
Pine nuts
Balsamic dressing

Chop strawberries and mango into small pieces and place in a salad bowl.
Sprinkle sugar over the above mixture and refrigerate. 
At serving time, add a portion of baby spinach leaves and a sprinkling of pine nuts to serving bowl along with a portion of the fruit mixture. 
Dress with balsamic dressing.
Toss and serve.

Chicken/Cranberry Salad

    6 cups cooked chicken breast diced and chilled
    1/2 cup dried cranberries or raisins
    pecans sauteed in butter (to taste)
    brown sugar (to taste)
    Cinnamon (to taste)
    mayo (to taste)
    a pinch of salt

In a large salad bowl mix all ingredients.  Serve cold on a salad plate or on raisin bread.

Mango Chicken Salad

1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons sunflower oil
1-1/2 chicken breasts
10-15 small new potatoes, washed
2 tiny zucchini
1 ripe mango, peeled and sliced
2 cups mixed baby salad greens, such as spinach, arugula and/or romaine lettuce

Fresh Orange Dressing
1⁄2 teaspoon finely grated orange rind
freshly squeezed orange juice from 1/2 an orange
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • Boil chicken breasts until done.  Cool & then chop into bite size pieces.
  • Place the garlic, ginger, soy sauce and sunflower oil in frying pan.  Add the chicken breasts and cook for 5 minutes.
  • Cook potatoes until tender. Meanwhile, place sliced zucchini in a steamer basket cover and set over the pan of potatoes to steam. Cook until tender. 
  • Drain the potatoes and leave until cool enough to handle (or cool with water), then cut into  slices.
  • To make the orange dressing, place the orange rind and juice, mustard, and sunflower seeds in a bowl and whisk together.
  • Transfer the warm chicken, potatoes and zucchini to the serving bowl and gently toss together to coat with the dressing. Add the mango and salad greens and toss gently again. 
  • Serve mango chicken salad immediately or after cooled.  

Carrot & ? Salad

1-2 peeled carrots per serving (or most stores these days sell pre-grated carrots!)
Mayonnaise or Miracle Whip

Plus add any or all of the following (as per your tastes):
  • Raisins
  • Chopped Apple
  • Crushed Pinapple
  • Chopped almonds, pecans or sunflower seeds
  • Lemon juice (just a dash)
  • Sour cream or yogurt in addition to or instead of mayonnaise
  • Chopped broccoli, peas and/or zucchini
The picture is carrot salad with raisins and mayonnaise.  It's great!

Chicken/Raisin Salad

    2 Chicken Breast Fillets, Skinless and Boneless
    3/4 small lettuce
    2 medium Red and/or Yellow Peppers
    1/4 cup slivered Almonds
    1/2 cup Raisins
    Herb dressing of your preference

  • Boil chicken until done.  
  • Cool and then dice into bite size pieces
  • Shred lettuce into serving dish
  • Add chopped peppers, slivered almonds, chicken and raisins.
  • MixKeep in fridge and add herb dressing or your choice at time of serving

Green Bean and Salmon Salad

1 pound Green Beans, trimmed and cut
   into 1" pieces
1 can Kidney Beans, drained and rinsed
1 large can Salmon in Water, or Tuna in 
Bunch of Chives
1/4 cup (little less) Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/4 cup Red Wine Vinegar
Salt and Pepper
2 Clove Garlic, minced
1/4 tsp (or to taste) Red Pepper Flakes

  • Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add in the trimmed green beans and cook for 3-4 minutes. Immediately drain and rinse with cold water until the beans are cool.  Drain well and pat dry with paper towels.
  • Pour into a large bowl. Add kidney beans to the bowl. Drain salmon/tuna, and using fork, flake it into the bowl. Top with chopped chives.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper to taste, minced garlic & Red Pepper Flakes.  Pour over the salad and using a rubber spatula, fold together. 
  • Eat immediately or chill until ready to eat.

Brussel Sprout Pecan Cranberry/Apple Salad 

Carmel Apple Vinaigrette (see below)
4 slices thick-cut bacon, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced or grated
1 pound brussel sprouts, stems removed and sliced
1/2 a small red onion, chopped
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 teaspoons sea salt
2-1/2 apples chopped
About 1 cup of dried cranberries

  • Heat a large skillet with high sides over medium-high heat and cook bacon until crispy. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate. 
  • Remove all but one tablespoon of bacon fat from the pan and then add 1 tablespoon olive oil, heat over high heat. 
  • Add garlic and saute for 30 seconds. 
  • Add the brussel sprouts and chopped onions in a single layer and sprinkle with brown sugar and salt. 
  • Let sit 1 minute and stir. 
  • Continue to saute for another 4-5 minutes, until bright green and tender. 
  • Now add the apples and cook another 3-5 minutes. 
  • Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the the pecans and dried cranberries.
  • Drizzle with the caramel apple vinaigrette and the crispy bacon.

Caramel Apple Vinaigrette

2 cups apple cider
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 of an finely chopped
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
4 sage leaves, chopped
1/2 cup olive oil
pinch of cayenne pepper

salt and pepper, to taste

  • Add the apple cider, brown sugar and chopped apples to a medium sauce pot and bring to a boil.
  • Boil for about 10 to 15 minutes or until the cider has reduced to about 1/2 cup and is slightly thick and syrupy. 
  • Remove from heat and add the cider vinegar and sage leaves. 
  • Pour the mixture into a food processor or blender and add the olive oil, pinch of cayenne, salt and pepper. 
  • Pulse the vinaigrette a few time to mince the apples (do not puree the apples). 
  • Taste and season with more salt and pepper if desired. 
  • Keep the dressing in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Butternut Squash, Carrot, Apple & Cranberry Salad

1 butternut squash
2 medium carrots
1 medium apple
2 small oranges
1/2 c dried cranberries
2 Tbsp honey
3 Tbsp olive oil
dash(es) salt

  • Peel the butternut squash. Cut open the bulbous end and scoop out the pulp and seeds. Using a food processor (or grater), grate the squash. Transfer to a medium bowl.
  • Wash and/or peel the carrots and apples. Grate those as well and add to bowl.
  • Peel one orange and cut into chunks. Add to the bowl.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the honey, oil, and juice from the second orange. Add a dash of salt.
  • Drizzle over the squash mixture, tossing to lightly coat.

Asian Chopped Salad 

1 small head of broccoli
1 bunch radishes
1 small head of red cabbage
1 cup frozen peas
1/3 cup slivered almonds, toasted
2 T white wine vinegar
2 T Sugar
2 tsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. crushed garlic puree
1 tsp. Asian sesame oil
1 tsp. ground ginger puree
1 tsp. (or more) Sriracha sauce (or other hot sauce of your choice)
2/3 cup mayo 

  • Run broccoli, radishes, and cabbage through a food processor.  
  • Put almonds in a dry pan and toast over high heat for 1-2 minutes, just until the nuts are starting to get fragrant. 
  • Toss the above shredded mixture together with the peas & toasted slivered almonds in a medium-sized bowl.
  • In a small bowl or glass measuring cup, mix together the white wine vinegar, sugar, soy sauce, garlic puree, sesame oil, ground ginger, and Sriracha sauce. Whisk in mayo. 
  • Add dressing to salad ingredients and toss until all the vegetables are well-coated with dressing. (You may not need all the dressing if you like your salads to be on the dry side or you may wish to increase the amounts in the salad dressing to make more.) 

    Saturday, 15 November 2008

    Mango Chicken

    For the Sauce:
    3/4 cup soy sauce, reduced
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    1/4 cup rice vinegar
    3 cloves garlic
    1 tablespoon fresh ginger,
       minced, smashed, or in
       paste form
    1/2 cup chicken broth

    Everything Else:
    1 yellow onion
    1-2 lbs. boneless skinless
    1/4 cup flour
    a generous pinch of salt and
    a generous pinch of chili
    1 tablespoon oil
    2-3 cups frozen or fresh
       mango chunks
    sesame seeds, green onions,
       or limes for topping
    cooked rice for serving

    • Get your rice cooking!
    • In a food processor blend the soy sauce, brown sugar, rice vinegar, garlic, and ginger. Continue to blend until very, very smooth. Set aside.
    • Dice the onion. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces. 
    • Combine the flour, salt, pepper, and chili powder in a shallow dish and dredge each piece of chicken in the flour mixture to get a light coating.
    • Heat the oil over medium high heat in a large pan. 
    • Add the onions and stir fry for a few minutes. 
    • Add the chicken and stir fry for a few minutes until browned. 
    • Add the sauce and the broth - watch for splatter (!) and adding more broth if needed to thin out the sauce. 
    • Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the mango chunks, stir, and cover and simmer for another 5-10 minutes.
    • Serve over rice topped with sesame seeds, green onions, lime juice, or anything else that strikes your fancy.

    Pasta with Veggies & Shrimp & Coconut Milk

    1 cup uncooked pasta (penne, bows,
       shells, etc)
    2 tablespoons virgin coconut oil
    1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
    1/2 cup chopped onion
    1/4 cup diced red bell pepper
    1/4 cup diced yellow bell pepper
    3 diced tomatoes
    1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
    1/4 cup chopped green beans
    3 tsp Thai Red Curry paste
    1 cup coconut milk

    • Cook pasta according to directions on the package.
    • In a pan, heat coconut oil on medium heat. 
    • When the oil is hot, add chopped garlic. Stir. 
    • When the garlic turns slightly brown add chopped onion and sauté until the onion is translucent. 
    • Then add the chopped red bell pepper, yellow bell pepper, tomato, green beans, tomatoes and salt.
    • Cover and let it cook. Check intermittently. Stir as necessary. 
    • Once the vegetables are cooked, add Thai Red Curry paste and coconut milk, mix well and turn off the heat. 
    • Mix with cooked pasta.
    • Stir well and serve hot. 

    Singapore Noodles

    2 stalks fresh Spring Onions
    1 medium sized Carrot
    1 green Chili
    2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
    200 grams Egg Noodles Asian style
    1 Tablespoon Ginger garlic Paste
    2 Eggs
    a bunch of fresh Prawns
    2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce
    1 Tablespoon Vinegar
    1 Teaspoon Sugar
    1 Tablespoon Ketchup
    Salt and Pepper to taste
    2 Tablespoons Curry Powder
    about 50 milliliter Water

    • Cut your clean spring onion into slices. Keep the green side apart to garnish the noodles at the end of the cooking process. 
    • Peel your carrot, quarter and slice as well. 
    • Chop your chili small. 
    • Pour the oil into a wok, heat up and add the spring onion slices, carrot and chili. Stir fry until a bit soft for a minute or two on high heat.  
    • At the same time heat up a pot with water and salt. Once the water boils add the noodles and cook them for 3 minutes! The noodles need to be a bit hard - al dente - after cooking, and not mushy. Strain the noodles and keep aside.
    • Add the ginger garlic paste to the wok and stir fry. 
    • Then continue by adding the eggs, which you will scramble. 
    • Keep on stir frying the whole content on high heat and throw in the clean prawns. Stir fry the content on high heat until the prawns take colour and look cooked.  
    • Now add in the cooked noodles and stir fry. This is best done with 2 cooking spoons to mix it all well on medium heat.  
    • In a bowl add the soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, ketchup, salt and pepper. Mix the content well. 
    • In another bowl add the curry powder, a tablespoon water at first only so to mix it to a paste. Then add the remaining 50 milliliter water and mix the content.  
    • While stir frying the wok content with 2 cooking spoons and increasing the heat, you pour in equally the soy sauce & curry mixture. Mix and stir fry well. 
    • The finished dish should be dry, without any water remaining. 
    • Add the green onion just before serving and stir.
    • Serve hot.  

    Apple and Pork Breakfast Sausage

    2 medium apples
    1 bunch of chives scissored
       into small pieces
    2 tablespoons butter
    2 medium cloves garlic
    1 tablespoon minced fresh
    2 teaspoons minced fresh
    3/4 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon black pepper
    1 tablespoon spicy mustard
    1 pound ground pork

    • Heat large skillet over medium. 
    • Scissor chives (there should be about 1/4 cup). 
    • Peel and cut apples into 1/4-inch cubes (there should be about 1 2/3 cup). 
    • Melt butter in skillet, and add the chives. 
    • Add the apples and a couple of pinches of the salt, and increase the heat to medium high. Stir occasionally until the apples are tender but not mushy, and start to turn golden. 
    • While the apples are cooking, peel the garlic cloves and grate them. 
    • Once the apples are done, add the garlic to the skillet and stir to distribute and cook the garlic, about 30 seconds. 
    • Transfer apple mixture to a medium bowl. 
    • Stir in the sage, thyme, salt, pepper, and spicy mustard. 
    • Set the mixture aside to cool for about 15 minutes. 
    • Add the ground pork, and mix to combine (clean hands are the best tool for this). 
    • Refrigerate the mixture for at least 60 minutes (or overnight). 
    • Divide and form into 8 to 10 patties. 
    • Heat non-stick skillet over medium-low. Cook patties, flipping once or twice, until browned and cooked through, about 12 to 14 minutes.
    • Note:  Uncooked patties can be frozen.  

    Thursday, 13 November 2008

    Sweet and Sour Veggie & Fruit Salad

    1 small zucchini, diced small (about 1 to
       1 1/2 cups) or alternatively cooked
       asparagus, diced small
    1 average/small de-seeded jalapeño pepper,
       diced finely
    3/4 cup diced pineapple (fresh, frozen, or
    3/4 cup diced mango or papaya
    1/2 cup corn (fresh or frozen; don't cook or
       thaw it)
    1/2 cup cooked green beans, diced small
    1/3 cup hot pepper jelly (home made or
    juice from 1 very juicy lime, 3 to 4
    pinch cayenne pepper, optional and to taste
    salt and pepper, optional and to taste
    chips or bread for serving, optional

    • Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, toss very well to coat, and serve immediately. 
    • Optionally, refrigerate salad for up to 24 hours before serving. Fruits and vegetables will release their juices and salad will be juicier, but the flavours will have married and salad tastes better on second day. 
    • Salad will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 4 days, noting it will become juicier as time passes.

    Wednesday, 12 November 2008

    Candied Pecans

    1 cup sugar (you can do 1/2 white sugar and
       1/2 brown sugar if you prefer)
    1 tsp cinnamon (more or less to taste)
    1 tsp salt (more or less to taste)
    1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (optional – use this if
       you want the pecans to have a little kick or
       you can also use some drops of your
       favourite hot sauce)
    1 egg white
    1 tbsp water (use less water to compensate
       for the hot sauce if you use it)
    1 pound unsalted pecan halves

    • Preheat oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit.
    • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
    • In a large bowl, mix the egg white and water (& hot sauce?) together well, until they are very frothy.
    • Toss the pecans in the egg white mixture.
    • Add the sugar, salt and spices.
    • Add pecans and toss to coat evenly.
    • Spread out in a single layer on the parchment paper.
    • Bake for one hour, stirring the mixture every 15-20 minutes, making sure the pecans stay in a single layer.
    • Allow to cool completely before storing them in air-tight containers.

    It’s important to cool the candied pecans completely before you store them in a container with a lid. If you don’t, as the heat is released from the pecans it will end up creating steam in the container and making the nuts soggy. Once they’re cool, you can store them in the pantry, in the refrigerator or in the freezer.

    • Room temperature: Put them in airtight glass or plastic containers and store for a week.
    • Refrigerator: Put them in airtight glass or plastic containers and store for four weeks.
    • Freezer: Put them in airtight, freezer-stable, glass or plastic containers. If there is any room at the top of the container, place a piece of plastic wrap or wax paper over them, to keep air from touching them. Freeze for two months for best quality. After two months, they will still be safe to eat, but they may decline in quality.

    Tuesday, 11 November 2008

    Bacon Chicken Sweet & Sour Bites

    4 chicken breasts, about 1-1/2 lbs total
    24+ slices of bacon, cut in half
    8 tbs brown sugar
    1 cup pineapple juice
    1/2 cup Oyster sauce
    2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
    2+ tbs Rum
    1 cup ketchup
    1/4+ cup your favourite hot sauce

    • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.  
    • Line a baking sheet with foil and place an oven safe wire rack over top.
    • Cut each chicken breast into 1" cubes.
    • Wrap each chicken cube in bacon and insert a toothpick in the centre to secure. 
    • Arrange on wire rack in a single later. 
    • Bake for 25-30 minutes.
    • Meanwhile, in your slow cooker, stir together the brown sugar, pineapple juice, oyster sauce, Worcestershire sauce, rum, ketchup, and hot sauce. 
    • When bites are out of the oven carefully transfer to slow cooker and toss with sauce. 
    • Cover and cook in slow cooker for 2 - 3 hours. 
    • Serve warm.

    Monday, 10 November 2008

    Tea Loaf

    8 oz mixed dried fruit
    2 ounces currants
    2 ounces raisins
    2 ounces dried cranberries
    2 ounces stem ginger in syrup, drained
       and chopped finely or 2 ounces glace
       ginger, chopped finely or a teaspoon
       of ginger paste
    1 large orange, zest or 1 tablespoon
       dried orange peel
    3 ounces brown sugar
    1⁄4 pint hot darjeeling tea or 1⁄4 pint
       hot black tea, of your choice
    1 egg, size 3, medium
    1 teaspoon ground ginger
    1 ounces flour
    1 teaspoon baking powder

    • Night Before Baking: Place all of the dried fruit, including the orange zest and ginger, with the sugar into a large mixing bowl, and pour over the hot tea, give it a good stir - cover with a clean tea towel and leave to steep overnight.
    • Baking the Loaf:. Pre-heat oven to 160C/325F and line and grease large loaf tin.
    • Add the beaten egg to the fruit mixture and mix well, then add the ground ginger.
    • Gradually add the flour and stir the mixture well, ensuring there are no lumps of flour remaining.
    • Pour the mixture into the prepared loaf tin and bake for 1 and 1/2 to 1 and 3/4 hours, or until the loaf is firm and a skewer comes out clean when testing.
    • Allow the loaf to cool slightly, and gently remove to a wire cooling rack.
    • Store in an airtight tin for up to 1 week, or freeze slices of the tea loaf with wax paper in between each slice.

    Sunday, 9 November 2008

    Salmon Burgers

    small bundle of chives,
       scissored into small pieces
    3/4 cup fresh herbs (basil and
       parsley and what-have-
    16 ounces raw salmon, skin
    1 cup cooked quinoa
    2 eggs
    1 tablespoon lemon juice
    salt and pepper to taste
    2 tablespoons minced herbs*
       taken from the cup above,
       plus some of the scissored
    1/8 cup oil
    1 tablespoons lemon juice
    ¼ teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon honey
    3 tablespoons Greek Yogurt

    • Mince the chives and herbs. 
    • Set aside two tablespoons of the herbs & some of the chives for later*. 
    • Saute the remaining chives and herbs in a little olive oil over medium high heat for a few minutes to remove the bite. 
    • Pulse the salmon, together with the sauted herbs, cooked quinoa, eggs, lemon juice, and salt & pepper briefly in a food processor until well mixed.
    • Shape the mixture into four patties.
    • Here I like to put the patties, on top of waxed paper and into the freezer for a bit, just to firm them up.
    • Heat a small drizzle of oil or Pam in skillet over medium high heat. Fry the patties flipping from time to to time.  They should be golden brown on the outside and fully cooked on the inside.
    • Place all the other ingredients (minced herbs & chives, oil, lemon juice, salt, honey, and yogurt) in a jar and shake until combined 
    • Serve burgers on buns with lettuce & tomato, a bit of mayo, & a smear or two of the above jar's contents.  
    • Alternatively, you could serve the burger patties on a small salad, using the jar's contents as the salad's dressing.  

    Saturday, 8 November 2008

    Pizza Casserole

    16 oz. sea shells or what-have-
       you macaroni
    1 lb ground beef
    16 (+ or -) oz. pizza sauce
       purchased or home-made
    4 Tbsp olive oil
    2 clove garlic chopped
    1 medium bell pepper diced
    1 medium onion diced
    1-1/2 cups mushroom pieces
    1 can sliced black olives
    1 Tbsp Italian seasoning
    1 pkg pepperoni sliced
    12 oz package of shredded
       mozzarella cheese
    1 c water
    1 Tbsp oregano, dried
    1 can diced tomatoes
    hot pepper or pepper flakes as desired
    • Prepare the pasta as directed remembering to salt the water while boiling. Drain and set aside in a large mixing bowl
    • In a large deep skillet brown the ground beef drain and set aside.
    • In the same skillet over medium heat put in the olive oil and lightly saute the garlic, onion, and bell pepper until a little tender.
    • Add the sauce*, diced tomatoes, ground beef, Italian seasoning, and the water. Stir together and let simmer about 5 min.
    • Pour over macaroni and then add the mushrooms and black olives.
    • Stir all ingredients together pour in a 9x13 deep dish pan.
    • Cover the top of casserole with the shredded cheese then layer the pepperoni across the top.
    • Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes or until the cheese is bubbling. Pepperoni and cheese should look like a pizza when ready.

    Rice Bowl with Wasabi Dressing

    For the Rice:
    1 cup cooked brown or white rice
    2 teaspoons rice vinegar
    2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
    Pinch salt & sugar

    For the Dressing:
    2 tablespoons tahini
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    1 tablespoon rice vinegar
    2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
    2 teaspoons soy sauce
    1-2 teaspoons wasabi paste, to taste

    For the Bowls:
    1 cup Sesame Rice
    1/2 cup diced cucumber (about 1/2 medium, peeled or unpeeled, your choice)
    1 medium avocado, diced (about 1/2 cup)
    1/2 cup diced or julienned carrots (about 1 medium)
    1/3 cup peas
    Cooked diced chicken
    Shredded Cheese (your choice)
    Creamy Sesame-Wasabi Dressing, to taste
    1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
    • In a small bowl, stir together the rice, vinegar, sesame seeds, salt, and sugar.
    • To make the dressing, add all ingredients to a small bowl. Stir briskly with a whisk until combined and creamy. If the dressing is too thick, add a bit more olive oil to thin it out.
    • To assemble rice bowl, place the rice in the bowl. Top with cucumbers, carrots, and avocado.
    • You may add shredded cheese of your choice at this point if desired.
    • Drizzle with dressing and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds. 
    • Serve room temperature.

    Shrimp Scampi with Zucchini Noodles

    4 tablespoons of olive oil
    1 pound of shrimp, peeled & deveined
    ½ cup of onions, diced
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    ⅓ cup of white wine
    1 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
    1 pint of cherry tomatoes
    2 tablespoons of butter
    salt & pepper
    juice of 1 lemon
    ⅓ cup of fresh basil, chopped
    4 smallish zucchini, made into noodles*

    • Heat a large skillet to medium high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and the shrimp.
    • Immediately season shrimp with ½ teaspoon of red pepper flakes, salt & pepper.
    • Saute each side for 2-3 minutes or until the shrimp turn opaque in color.
    • Remove shrimp from the pan.
    • Into the same skillet the shrimp were in add onions, saute from 3-4 minutes until translucent.
    • Next add garlic and saute for 30 seconds, immediately add white wine to deglaze and incorporate all the goodness off the bottom of the pan.
    • Add in the cherry tomatoes, cover skillet and saute for 3-4 minutes or until tomatoes start to get somewhat soft.
    • Add shrimp back to the pan, butter, lemon juice, ½ teaspoon of red pepper flakes, and basil. Stir until butter melts.
    • Heat a large non-stick skillet to medium high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pan and then zucchini noodles.
    • Saute for 2-3 minutes, and remove.
    • Add noodles to the shrimp mixture, toss to coat and serve!

    *Note:  I've been told that there is such a thing as a zucchini noodler, although I've never seen one myself.  I just cut the zucchini into long thin strips.  ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    Friday, 7 November 2008

    Apple Pie Crumble

    4 peeled, cubed apples
    2 Tbsp golden brown sugar
    1 tsp ground cinnamon
    1/4 tsp sea salt
    3 Tbsp lemon juice
    1 Tbsp coconut oil melted
    1 tsp cornstarch

    1 cup rolled oats
    1 cup raw almonds
    1/4 tsp sea salt
    2 Tbsp golden brown sugar
    4 1/2 Tbsp coconut oil melted

    3 Tbsp golden brown sugar
    3 Tbsp flour
    1/4 cup rolled oats
    1 1/2 Tbsp coconut oil melted

    1 cups icing sugar
    1-2 Tbsp almond or coconut or what-have-you milk

    • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (176 C) and line an 8x8-inch baking dish with parchment paper.
    • Add apples to a different baking dish along with golden brown sugar, cinnamon, sea salt, lemon juice, coconut oil and cornstarch. Toss to combine.
    • Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes, then remove foil and bake for 4-5 minutes more or until apples appear slightly caramelized and are tender to the touch.
    • While the apples finish baking, add oats, almonds, sea salt, and golden brown sugar to a food processor or high speed blender and pulse into a fine meal, making sure no large pieces remain.
    • Add melted coconut oil and pulse a few more times until a crumbly dough forms.
    • Spread the mixture into the parchment paper baking dish and press down into an even layer with your fingers or a flat object.
    • Bake for 15 minutes at 350 (176 C), then increase heat to 375 degrees F (190 C) and bake for 5-8 minutes more, or until the crust is fragrant and the edges are light golden brown. Set aside.
    • While crust is baking, prepare crumble by adding all ingredients to a small mixing bowl and using a fork or your fingers to mix ingredients into a crumble. Set aside.
    • Add baked apples and their juices/sauce to the pre-baked crust and spread into an even layer. Then top with crumble topping and spread evenly to cover apples.
    • Reduce oven heat back to 350 degrees F (176 C) and bake for another 15-25 minutes, or until the apples topping are warm and bubbly and the crumble is golden brown.
    • Prepare glaze at this time by adding icing sugar to a mixing bowl together with 1 Tbsp milk to start. Whisk until a thick but pourable glaze is achieved. If too thick, add more milk. If too thin, add more icing sugar. Set aside.
    • Remove squares from oven and let cool slightly - about 45 minutes. Once cooled, gently lift bars from pan and top with glaze (optional). Slice into 9 even squares.
    • These are crumbly and are best enjoyed with a fork (!) with ice cream or whipped cream.

    Monday, 3 November 2008

    Chicken Quinoa and Broccoli Casserole

    2 cups chicken broth
    1 cup milk (reduced fat fine)
    1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
    ½ cup flour
    2 cups water, divided
    1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
    ¼ cup cooked, crumbled bacon
    1 pound boneless skinless
    2 teaspoons seasoning (any
       basic blend you like)
    ¼ cup shredded cheese (any
       kind will work)
    3 cups fresh broccoli florets

    • Sauce: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and generously grease (!)  a 9x13 baking dish
    • Bring the chicken broth and ½ cup milk to a low boil in a saucepan. 
    • Whisk the other ½ cup milk with the poultry seasoning and flour; add the mixture to the boiling liquid and whisk until a smooth creamy sauce forms.
    • Assembly: In a large bowl, mix the sauce from from above with one cup water, quinoa, and bacon and stir to combine. 
    • Pour the mixture into the (seriously greased and prepared) baking dish. 
    • Slice the chicken into thin strips and lay the chicken strips over the top of the quinoa mixture. Sprinkle with the seasoning. 
    • Bake uncovered for 30 minutes.
    • Broccoli: While the casserole is in the oven, place the broccoli in boiling water for 1 minute until it turns bright green and then run under cold water. Set aside.
    • Bake: Remove the casserole from the oven, check the mixture by stirring it around in the pan, and if need be, bake for an additional 10-15 minutes to get the right consistency. 
    • When the quinoa and chicken are cooked and the sauce is thickened, add the broccoli and a little bit of water (up to one cup) until the consistency is creamy and smooth and you can stir it up easily in the pan. 
    • Top with the cheese and bake for 5 minutes, or just long enough to melt the cheese.

    Spicy Marmalade Meatballs

    2 lbs ground beef (chuck)
    1/2 cup bread crumbs
    1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon pepper
    1 small onion, minced
    1/2 teaspoon chili powder
    1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
    3 eggs

    2 cups ketchup
    1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
    1 jar orange marmalade (10 to 12 ounces)
    dash cayenne, more or less to taste
    1 teaspoon chili powder
    4 dashes of hot sauce

    • Combine sauce ingredients in slow cooker - cover and cook on high while preparing meatballs. 
    • Combine meatball ingredients. 
    • Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. 
    • Add meatballs; brown on all sides. 
    • Place browned meatballs in a 325° oven and bake for 45 minutes
    • Transfer meatballs to slow cooker with a slotted spoon
    • Cover and reduce to low heat for 2 to 4 hours. 
    • Serve hot as an appetizer or over rice for a main dish. 
    • Makes 24 to 48 meatballs, depending on size.