Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Chicken, Mushroom & Peas Pasta Bake

Yet another variation of the pasta bake...

Get This -

200g dried macaroni (or other short pasta)
1 chicken breast, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
100g button mushrooms, sliced
1 cup frozen peas
1 cup bechamel sauce
2/3 cup tasty cheese, grated
1/3 cup parmesan, grated

Do This -
  • Cook pasta following instructions on the pack.
  • Add small amount of oil to a frypan, cook chicken, onion mushrooms until chicken is browned and onion and mushrooms are soft.
  • Combine pasta, chicken mixture, bechamel sauce, 2/3 of the cheeses and peas in an ovenproof dish. Sprinkle remaining cheese on the top and bake in a moderate oven for 20mins, or until golden.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Ham & Pea Frittata

image from Taste.com

(serves 4) 

Get This -

4 eggs
1/3 cream
1/4 grated parmesan
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 cup frozen peas
80g shaved leg ham, chopped

Do This -
  1. Preheat oven to 190C/170C fan-forced. Grease a 6cm-deep, 19cm square cake pan or flan dish or muffin pan for individual frittatas. Grease tray/pans. 
  2. Mix ingredients together in a large jug. Pour into pan/s. 
  3. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until golden and set. 
  4. Stand frittatas in pan for 2 to 5 minutes before serving.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Meatless Pasta Bake

The other meatless meal we had was a version of a pasta bake that I have made and love.
This one -  Creamy Chicken Pasta Bake.

I followed the recipe but instead of adding chicken I added red lentils and a few other things...

This is not my photo either, but again, it looked pretty much like this.
Serves 4

Get This -

250g dried macaroni pasta
100g baby spinach leaves
300ml light thickened cream
3/4 cup semi-dried tomatoes
1/2 punnet cherry tomatoes, cut into quarters
1 tablespoon capers
1/3 cup red lentils
1/2 small block fetta
1 1/2 cups grated parmesan cheese
1 cup grated mozzarella cheese

Do This -
  1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Lightly grease a 5cm-deep, 20cm x 28cm (base), 8-cup capacity baking dish.
  2. Cook pasta in a large saucepan of boiling, salted water for 10 minutes or until tender.
  3. Cook lentils in boiling water until tender.
  4. Drain pasta and lentils and return to saucepan. Add spinach, cream, dried tomatoes, tomatoes, capers, fetta and 1 cup parmesan. Toss until well combined. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Spoon mixture into prepared dish. Top with mozzarella and remaining parmesan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden. Spoon pasta bake onto serving plates. Serve.

Meatless Burritos

We are attempting to eat less meat by having a couple of meat free dinners a week.
So last week I tweaked a couple of favourite dinners into meat free versions.

The first one was burritos which we have usually once a week with chicken or mince.

Last week I made them this way...

Not my photo but they looked kind of like this

Get This -

Burrito kit
can four (or five from Aldi) beans
sour cream or plain yogurt

Do This -

Fry chopped onion and tomatoes in small amount of oil
Add drained beans
Stir in sachet of burrito mix with water
Heat burrito wraps as per directions on the box
Roll up bean mix, cheese, salad, sauce and sour cream.

We didn't even miss the meat!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Mini Lime Meringue Pies

Still trying to use up the limes from our tree, I came up with this idea.

I filled store bought mini pie cases with
the lemon filling (which I changed to lime) from Liz's recipe -

Beat 2 eggs & mix with a tin of condensed milk and the juice from 2 limes.

Bake in 180C oven for 10 - 15 mins.

Top with meringue -

Use an electric beater to beat 2 egg whites until stiff peaks form. Gradually add 1/2 cup (115g) caster sugar beating until sugar has dissolved and mixture is glossy. Roughly spread over top of lime filling. Bake for 3-5 minutes.

Makes 24 mini pies.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Lime Cordial

We have a lime tree in our backyard that is absolutely loaded with fruit.
So I decided to have a go at this...it is really good!
You could do the same with lemons.

(Google image)

Get This:

• 8 large limes
• 2 cups white sugar
• 1 cup cold water

Do This:
• Squeeze the juice from the limes and set aside.
• Keep the peels of 2 of the limes, and place in a pot along with the sugar and water.
• Bring it to a boil, stirring constantly and then lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes, just stirring now and again.
• Remove from heat, add the reserved lime juice and bring back to the boil briefly, whilst stirring.
• Allow to cool and then strain into a bottle or jug. Refrigerate.
• Dilute with water or soda water before serving according to taste.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Creamy chicken & mushrooms

Serves 4

Get This -

1 1/2 tbs olive oil
500g chicken thigh fillets
Salt & freshly ground pepper
400g flat mushrooms, sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 cup (250ml) chicken stock
1 cup (250ml) pouring cream
1 tbs dijon mustard
1 cup frozen peas
rice to serve

Do This -

Heat oil in a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Add to pan with mushrooms and garlic.  Stir until chicken is lightly browned.

Stir in stock, cream and mustard. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 12-15 minutes or until sauce reduces and thickens slightly.

Meanwhile, cook rice following packet directions.

Add frozen peas to the chicken.  Simmer until peas are heated through.

Serve over rice.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Beef & Vegetable Stew

This beef and vegetable stew is easy to make and great for a cold winter night.

(serves 4)

Get This -

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
800g beef chuck steak, trimmed, cubed
2 large carrots, peeled, roughly chopped
2 celery stalks, roughly chopped
1 large potato, peeled and cubed
1/4 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
1/3 cup red wine
2 tablespoons plain flour
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
2 x 410g cans diced tomatoes
2 cups beef stock

Do This -

Place beef, flour, salt & pepper in a zip lock bag.  Shake until well coated.

Heat oil in large pot. Add onion. Cook, stirring, for 4 minutes or until onion has softened. Add garlic. Cook for 1 minute. Add beef. Cook for 5 minutes or until browned.

Add carrot, celery , parsley and potato. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Add wine. Bring to the boil. Add tomato paste, tomato and beef stock. Bring to the boil. Cover with lid. Reduce heat to low. Cook for 3 hours.

Serve with crusty bread or dumplings.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Linda's Chocolate Cake

I put out the call on Twitter for an easy recipe for morning tea.
Linda came to the rescue with this delicious and EASY recipe.
Thanks Linda!!

Get This -

1 2/3 cups plain flour
1 1/4 cups sugar
2/3 cup cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoons bicarb soda
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
125g softened butter
2 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla essence

Do This -

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degC.
  2. Stir flour, sugar, cocoa and bicarb together in a bowl.
  3. Add buttermilk, softened butter, eggs and vanilla.
  4. Beat with electric mixer or by hand for 30 seconds then more vigorously until dry ingredients are moist.
  5. Pour into greased and floured 23cm cake tin.
  6. Bake for 45 mins or until skewer comes out clean.
  7. Use melted chocolate or butter icing.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Indian Spiced Red Lentil Soup

I made this tonight.  I don't make vegetarian dishes very often because my husband misses meat.  His verdict on dinner tonight..."It's nice.  Would be better with meat."  Told you!  But I loved it and will be making it again, a lot.  Because it's as easy as it is healthy as it is yummy!

(serves 4)

Get This -

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 brown onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup korma curry paste
1 litre vegetable stock
400g can diced tomatoes
2/3 cup red lentils, rinsed
1/4 cup pearl barley, washed
1/2 cup chopped fresh coriander leaves
Crusty bread, to serve

Do This -

  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion. Cook, stirring, for 3 to 4 minutes or until softened. Add curry paste. Stir to combine.
  2. Stir in stock, tomato, lentils and barley. Cover. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low. Simmer for 20 to 25 minutes or until barley is tender. Divide between bowls. Top with coriander. Serve with bread.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Banana Muffins

I had four bananas going off getting way too ripe and I have friends coming for morning tea tomorrow.  So I decided to make some banana muffins.  I searched my favourite recipe website taste.com.au and found these.

I really wasn't in the mood to bake anything.  So I was super happy that these were extremely easy and they taste great!

Makes 12

Get This -

2 1/2 cups self-raising flour, sifted
1 cup brown sugar
80g butter, melted and cooled
2 eggs
2/3 cup milk
4 ripe bananas, mashed

Do This -

  1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Grease 12 hole muffin pan. Combine flour and sugar in a mixing bowl. Make a well in the centre.
  2. Using a fork, whisk butter, egg, milk, and bananas together in a jug. Add to flour mixture and fold together until just combined.
  3. Spoon into prepared pans and bake for 25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle of a muffin comes out clean. Cool in the pans for 5 minutes.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Tomato & lamb casserole with pesto dumplings

 Serves 6

Get This -
  • 40g (1/4 cup) plain flour
  • 1.5kg mini lamb round roasts, cut into 3cm pieces
  • 3 tbs olive oil
  • 8 slices prosciutto, coarsely chopped
  • 1 large brown onion, halved, thinly sliced
  • 1 x 800g can diced tomatoes
  • 250ml (1 cup) chicken stock
  • 4 dried bay leaves
  • 1 x 500g pkt Woolworths Select Frozen Broad Beans, thawed, peeled

    Pesto dumplings

  • 190g (1 1/4 cups) self-raising flour
  • 70g chilled butter, chopped
  • 60ml (1/4 cup) milk
  • 1 tbs bought basil pesto

Do This -
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Place flour on a plate. Season with salt and pepper. Add lamb and toss to coat. Shake off excess.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a 4L (16-cup) capacity flameproof, ovenproof casserole dish over medium heat. Add half the lamb and cook for 2-3 minutes each side or until brown. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with 1 tablespoon of oil and remaining lamb, reheating dish between batches.
  3. Heat the remaining oil in dish. Add the prosciutto and onion and cook, stirring, for 2-3 minutes or until onion is soft.
  4. Return the lamb to the dish. Add the tomato, stock and bay leaves. Cover and bake in oven for 1 1/2 hours or until the lamb is tender.
  5. Meanwhile, to make pesto dumplings, place flour in a bowl. Use your fingertips to rub the butter into the flour until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Pour in milk. Use a round-bladed knife in a cutting motion to mix until evenly incorporated. Add pesto and mix to create a swirled effect. Divide dough into 12 equal portions. Roll each portion into a ball.
  6. Increase oven temperature to 220°C. Add the broad beans to the lamb mixture and combine. Top with the dumplings. Bake, uncovered, for 10-15 minutes or until the dumplings are golden. Serve.

    (This recipe is from Taste.com)

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Liz's Gluten Free Lemon Tart

This recipe was given to me by Liz.  It is so quick and so easy that I think it might become a favourite recipe!  I love lemony desserts and this one is delicious.  AND it's wheat free.

Get This - 

Packet of Arnott's Rice Cookies
100g butter
2 eggs
tin of condensed milk
juice of 1 lemon

Do This - 

  1. Use a food processor to crush the biscuits and combine butter.
  2. Press into a pie dish & bake for about 10 minutes.
  3. Beat 2 eggs & mix with a tin of condensed milk and lemon juice.
  4. Pour into the flan & bake for about 10-15 minutes. Eat warm or cold.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Angela's Chicken Soup

This recipe was kindly given to my by @AngelaPj when I had a very sore throat.


Chicken to fill half your pot.
Maryland is best and cheap but can have small bones so not for littlies.
You need cuts with bones to get the flavour.
I use wings, drumsticks and breast fillets (for a bit more meat).
Dried tarragon (optional)
Chicken stock powder
Salt & pepper
Worcestershire sauce

Lots of vegies. Fill to top of pot. I like to use at least 10 different types.
Must have:
One bunch Shallots (definitely not onions)
Pumpkin (not too much or will be too sweet)
Silverbeet or spinach or asian green like bok chuy or choy sum (use lots as it shrinks)

Swede or turnip
Brussel sprouts

1. Boil Chicken for about ½ hour (as long as it takes to chop vegies) scrape off scum from top of water.
2. Add vegies and a few tablespoons of stock powder. Add tarragon and Worcestershire sauce and a little salt and pepper. Fill pot up with water.
3. Simmer for about 1 ½ hours.
4. Take out chicken and add noodles and a handful of rice.
5. Cook for another ½ hour or so.
6. Strip chicken from bones and put back in pot. Top up with water.
7. Add more stock powder, salt and pepper to taste.

Note: If using wings take them out before they fall apart otherwise the little bones escape from the skin.
Add a little more chicken stock than you need then you add water when you eat. That way you get more out of a pot cos there’s not much room for water in the pot with all those vegies.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Quick Goulash

This is really easy and really yum!

Serves 4

Get This -

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 500g stir-fry beef
  • 1 brown onion, thinly sliced
  • 200g button mushrooms, thickly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon ground paprika
  • 400g can condensed tomato soup
  • 400g can diced tomatoes
  • steamed rice, chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves and light sour cream, to serve

Do This -

  1. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large frying pan over high heat. Add half the beef. Cook, stirring often, for 3 minutes or until browned. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with oil and remaining beef.
  2. Add remaining 2 teaspoons oil, onion and mushroom to pan. Cook for 3 minutes or until tender. Add paprika. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add soup and tomatoes. Stir until well combined. Bring to the boil.
  3. Reduce heat to low. Return beef and any juices to pan. Simmer for 3 minutes or until warmed through. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Spoon rice into bowls. Spoon over goulash and sprinkle with parsley. Top with a dollop of sour cream and serve.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Thai Beef Stir-Fry

This recipe is divine.  Especially for a hot summer night, so fresh, crisp and healthy!

Serves 4

Get This -

  • 1 1/2 tbs peanut oil
  • 500g beef stir-fry strips
  • 2 carrots, cut into short thin sticks
  • 1 red capsicum, cut into thin strips
  • 1 stalk lemongrass, white part only, finely chopped
  • 4cm piece fresh ginger, thin sticks
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 1/2 tbs soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 tbs sweet chilli sauce
  • 1 tbs lime juice
  • 2 cups bean sprouts
  • 1 cup fresh coriander leaves
  • 1 cup fresh mint leaves
  • Steamed jasmine rice, to serve

Do This -

  1. Add 1 tablespoon of oil to a wok on high heat. Add half the beef and stir-fry for 1-2 mins. Repeat with remaining beef.
  2. Heat remaining oil over medium-high heat. Add carrots, capsicum, lemongrass, ginger and garlic. Stir-fry for 2 mins. Add soy sauce, sweet chilli sauce and lime juice. Toss well.
  3. Return beef and bean sprouts and toss through. Remove from heat and toss in half the coriander and mint. Serve with remaining coriander, mint and rice.
This recipe is from http://www.taste.com.au/ , my favourite recipe website.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Massaman Curry

I was going to make the 4 Ingredients Calendar version but it was completely tasteless.  I added a few more ingredients and it was so yummy I ate way too much!

Serves 4

Get This -

500g beef cubed
1 tablespoon massaman curry paste
3 potatoes peeled and cubed
400ml coconut milk
(that was their bit...here's my added extras...)
1 brown onion, cut into fine wedges
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 tablespoon fish sauce
juice from 1 lime

Do This -

  1. Heat 1/4 cup water on high heat in large saucepan.
  2. Add beef and onions and cook until beef is browned.
  3. Mix coconut milk, curry paste, sugar, fish sauce and lime juice together and add to saucepan with beef and onions along with potatoes.
  4. Simmer for at least 2 hours. (The original recipe said 20 mins but I find meat is always chewy unless it has been cooked slowly for a couple of hours at least.)
  5. Stir occasionally and season with salt to taste.
  6. Serve with rice.

Extra extras...

You could add peanuts or cashews.
You could garnish with your favourite herbs.
You could serve with green vegetables and carrots.
Or you could eat as it but try not to eat too much!!

Thursday, January 14, 2010


This recipe comes courtesy of Taryn over at Taryn Rucci.  Thanks Taryn!!

Ingredients -

1 cup of instant or fine polenta
4 cups chicken stock
Good seasoning of salt
Few teaspoons dried mixed herbs (you can use fresh, or whatever you have)
1 cup cheese (any type). I use cheddar

Put the polenta, stock and salt in a saucepan. Mix well. Put on the stovetop. Bring to the boil. Let it simmer for 10 minutes or so. If you use "normal" polenta it will take longer - normally about 30 minutes or so. Just read the packed instructions. Let it simmer until it thickens nicely. Take it off the heat and stir through cheese.

You can serve it like that OR

Pour mixture into a rectangle baking dish and wait till it has set. You can then cut it into slices and serve. OR

Pour mixture into rectangle baking dish and put in the fridge to set for a few hours. You can then cut into slices and either fry these or grill these. For extra crispiness coat them in flour and fry with a little oil.

You can try putting mushrooms, spring onions, tomatoes, spinach, feta, capsicum, sliced olives, garlic, zucchini or just about anything in with the polenta. Include this in the first step when all ingredients are combined before putting on the heat.

You can use polenta as a substitute to pasta in a lasagne. Its yummy topped with a tomato based sauce.