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mango, pineapple, papaya, passionfruit, tinned peaches, and a squeeze of lemon. If I had fresh mint, I would have sprinkled that on as a garnish…

You can use frozen or fresh – whatever you have on hand.

When you need a bowl of sunshine!

You’ve got to have this to make your life easier – muslin soup bags (also known as a stock sock)

500g chicken wings

1kg chicken thighs (no skin)

4 large stalks of celery (keep the tops and leaves)

2 large parsnips – peeled and roughly chopped

3 bay leaves

5 sprigs of fresh time

2 sprigs of fresh dill

5 stalks of flat leaf parsley

1 whole bulb of garlic – peeled and roughly chopped

1 thumb sized piece of ginger – peeled and grated

4 large carrots – peeled and quartered and cut in to 1cm chunks

1 finely chopped brown onion

1 leek. Rinsed and quartered and cut in to thin slices

1 orange.

Salt and pepper for seasoning

Method

Roast the chicken wings for about 35mins until golden brown. Reserve the fat.

In to the soup bag – chicken wings, celery tops and leaves, thyme, bay leaves, dill, parsnips, garlic. Tie a big knot to make sure nothing escapes.

With the fat you reserved from the chicken wings, fry off the onion, celery, leek, carrot until they soften.

Add the ginger.

Add the chicken thighs and the soup bag.

Cover with boiling water.

Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer for 2 1/2 – 3 hours – until the chicken thighs are tender and break apart with little resistance.

Turn off the heat.

Remove the soup bag, squeeze out any liquid, then discard.

Remove the chicken thighs. Roughly cut them into bite sized chunks. You can keep this separate or add it back in to your soup – personal taste.

Juice the orange, add the juice to the soup. Season with salt and pepper.

Allow the soup to cool and skim off the fat. The easiest way to do this is to cool it overnight in the fridge and remove the fat layer in the morning.

I like to serve it with thin egg noodles or matzo balls. A garnish of parsley or dill or even celery leaves.

Enjoy!

This is a great quick fix when fresh fruit isn’t in season – or the fruit bowl is bare. I keep it in the freezer, pop it in a bowl a few hours before a meal – then wow! That colour!

Makes a huge batch. Great as fruit salad and also in smoothies. Of course you can halve the recipe and keep the left over zippy bags ready for the next batch.

Ingredients

400g diced pink dragon fruit

500g frozen mango

1kg frozen mixed berries

Sometimes I add 500g pineapple or kiwi or even pitted cherries.

2 x 170g tin of passionfruit pulp (or fresh if available)

1 lime – juiced

A sprinkle of pomegranate arils would be pretty too.

Method

Mix it together and enjoy! It’s as simple as that.

Green goddess pasta

500g pasta. I like large shells or orecchiette or casarecce

250g softened cream cheese

1 heaped tablespoon pesto

2 cups cup of frozen green mixed veg – I used a mixture of broccoli, beans, and peas

250g spinach – I thawed a bag of chopped frozen spinach

2 spring onions, finely sliced

1 cup grated cheese – I used grated tasty cheese

Method

Cook pasta as per the packet’s instructions

Reserve a cup of pasta water

Drain the pasta

Return to the pot

On a medium/low heat stir through the cream cheese

Then the pesto

Then the cheese

Then the veggies, spinach, and spring onion

Serve with fresh parmesan

Enjoy

I’ve never used a pressure cooker before and I’m nervous! Wish me luck.

1.5kg beef brisket

1 onion – roughly chopped
3 garlic cloves (large halved)
3 celery stalks – halved and then 1cm chunks
3 baby parsnips- halved and then 1cm chunks
1 heaped tablespoon sweet paprika
3/4 cup good quality smokey BBQ sauce
4 cups beef stock
8 baby potatoes peeled and halved
3 bay leaves
Loads of freshly ground black pepper
A pinch of dried oregano and thyme
1 glass of white wine – optional

Brisket in
Veggies in
Herbs, spices, sauces, and stock in
The good stuff
Set it to ‘Pot Roast’

Let’s see what happens…

My friend recommended 2.5 hrs… so…

I cooked it at pressure for 2.5 hrs and then let it sit on the ‘keep warm’ setting for 20 mins to rest.

Follow the instructions that come with your pressure cooker to release the steam safely.

Remove the meat. Shred with two forks and discard chunks of fat.

You can skim the fat. But ideally put in the fridge overnight and then the fat is much easier to remove.

Whist Nat 🤫 https://youtu.be/Sw_Ze9zIafM would not approve – sometimes you have a small human that needs more iron in their diet. This is tasty and full of goodness for everyone.

This makes a BIG batch for the fridge and freezer.

You will need:

4 tablespoons Extra Virgin Light olive oil

1 large brown onion. Finely diced

1kg of mince – I used beef 500g, veal 400g, pork 100g. Any mince is fine

2 large carrots. Grated

1 large or 2 small zucchinis. Grated

3 large celery stalks. Grated

150g salt reduced tomato paste

400g tin of chopped tomatoes

700g Tomato Passata

250g frozen chopped kale (I prefer this to spinach, but you can substitute the spinach for kale if you like)

420g tin of lentils (I used no added salt) drained and rinsed

1/2 bunch of flat leaf parsley. Separate stalks and leaves. Chop both finely

1.5 cups of full cream milk

Optional – 1 glass wine – red or white

Method

In a very large pot

Heat the oil and sweat the onions until they’re soft

Then turn the heat up and add the mince

Break it up with a whisk

Keep cooking the meat until it releases all it’s liquid and then the liquid has evaporated- BE PATIENT THIS COULD TAKE 10-15 mins

Then stir every few minutes until the meat starts to caramelise and form a crust

Add the fresh veggies and the parsley stalks – cook them down until all the liquid has evaporated

Add the wine – optional

Cook for a full minute

Add the tomato paste

Cook for a full minute

Add the Passata and tinned tomatoes and lentils

Fill the Passata bottle with water and add it to the pot

Bring to the boil, then reduce to a gentle simmer

Cook for at least 2 hours but generally takes 4-6 if you cook it low and slow – stirring occasionally

When it has cooked down to the consistency you like, stir through the milk and parsley leaves

Always add a splash of pasta water when you combine the sauce and pasta before serving

Enjoy!

Well, it was time to tinker with the recipe again. These turned out great! I watched an insane number of YouTube videos and thought I would give a few things a try but with the classic flavours of our family recipe.

I like to use coarse matzah meal – 1 x 375g bag of was 3 cups… so I tripled the recipe for a bag… and then used 2 bags… so 24 eggs and 60 matzo balls later…

So, for each cup of matzah meal –

4 eggs
1/2 cup soda water
1/2 tbsp extra light olive oil
Pinch of white pepper
1/2 teaspoon of ground ginger
Very finely chopped parsley

Optional (not strictly KLP) 1 teaspoon of baking powder

Using an ice-cream scoop to keep them vaguely uniform in size… makes 10-12

Whisk the eggs, oil, pepper, ginger together.

Add the soda water.

Fold in the matzah meal and parsley with a silicone spatula – minimal stirring to keep the batter light and fluffy.

Cover and refrigerate for min 60 mins or overnight.

Minimal handling at this point keeps them light and fluffy.

Put a large pot of salted boiling water on the stove. I add stock cubes for flavour but this is up to you.

Use an icecream scoop or two soup spoons to scoop the batter and roll gently into balls with minimal pressure.

You can wet your hands with water to keep them smooth.

Gently drop them in the boiling water with the lid half on. These take about 30-40 minutes to cook all the way through. When you cut them in half, they should be easy to cut through and are uniform in colour.

Serve them in chicken soup or vegetable broth.

Better to cook them through in advance and reheat in boiling salted water for 15 mins or so when you are ready to serve them.

I used to freeze them in advance and boil them on the day. But they were never light and fluffy. This seems to have worked out much better.

This is my version of a dinner my friend La made me decades ago. When she said ‘I’ve made carrot and fetta lasagna’, I struggled to mask my apprehension. But – it was delicious! The sweet carrot, the salty fetta. It really works!

* you can also substitute half the cream with ricotta

This recipe makes one large lasagna (8 serves) or two small ones (2 x 4 serves)

Ingredients

3 tablespoons of a mild oil (extra virgin or rice bran)

1 large brown onion. Finely diced

1.5kg carrots. Ends removed, peeled, grated

450ml thickened cream (or 300ml cream, 150g ricotta)

6 large eggs

600g Greek fetta – grated

50g Greek fetta – tiny cubes

2/3 cup mozzarella

1/3 cup parmesan

Latina instant lasagna sheets

Salt & pepper for seasoning

Method

Preheat oven to 170 degrees Celsius

Bring a large saucepan to heat with the oil

Reduce the heat and soften the onions

Add the carrot, sauté until soft

Season with Salt & Pepper

Set aside to cool down

In a large bowl, mix the eggs, cream, fetta, salt and pepper together

Press a thin layer of the cooled carrot mixture to cover the base of your dish

Ladle over some of the cream mixture

Add a layer of lasagna sheets

Repeat until you have used up the carrot and cream mixtures, finishing with a cream layer

Sprinkle over the mozzarella and Parmesan

Bake for approximately 1 hour, until the top is golden brown

Remove from the oven and allow to sit for at least 10 mins before serving

Enjoy!

I’ve had a silicone donut mould for ages and it was time to give it a go.

Of course this recipe works as a regular muffin.

And you can make a healthier but much more dense version by substituting some or all of the flour with oat-bran.

Ingredients

  • 2½ cups plain flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ cup sugar (I used Low GI sugar)
  • 2 eggs lightly beaten
  • ⅔ cups oil (I used a canola. Add a little more milk if the mixture still seems too thick)
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • One punnet of chopped/diced fresh strawberries (or any berries you like)
  • Coconut oil spray for greasing the silicone mould or patty pans to line your muffin tray

Method

Preheat a fan forced oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

You’ll need two bowls. One for dry ingredients. One for wet ingredients.

Dry ingredients – sift and then use a whisk for good measure.

Wet ingredients – lightly beat the egg, then mix through the other wet ingredients.

Fold through the strawberries with a silicone spatula.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry. Stir until just combined. Add a tiny bit more milk if the mixture still seems too thick (the consistency of the batter can vary depending on which brand of yoghurt you use). You want the batter to be a soft dropping consistency.

Spoon the batter into the mould / muffin tray.

Bake until golden and a skewer comes out clean. Approximately 15-20 mins.

Allow to cool for at least 20 mins before moving to a cooling rack.

*if you’re not trying to be health/sugar conscious- a cream cheese drizzle would be delicious!

Cream cheese drizzle

125g full fat cream cheese, 1/4 cup softened butter (room temperature), 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste, 1 cup icing sugar

Mix until smooth, gently warm until pourable for drizzling.

Image from – https://thefirstyearblog.com/strawberry-cheesecake-donuts/

^ now I want to make these!!

Surprising Kiwi cupcakes

I had 6 overripe golden kiwi and I couldn’t bring myself to throw them out. I did some searching and found a recipe for kiwi bread and tweaked it. The result were light fluffy cupcakes the are almost apple-y

6 overripe kiwi fruit

125g melted unsalted butter

1/4 cup raw sugar

2 cups self raising flour

1/4 tsp baking soda

2 eggs

Preheat oven to 170c fanforced

Peel and roughly mash the kiwi

Whisk through the butter, sugar, and eggs

Sift in the flour and baking powder, fold through with a silicone spatula

Use an ice cream scoop to evenly fill a muffin tray lined with paper patty pans

Bake for 20 mins or so, until golden and cooked through

Cool for 15 mins in the tray before transferring to a cooling rack

You could add whipped cream cheese icing, but they’re pretty tasty on their own.

Serve warm. Enjoy!

Makes 12-15 depending on the size of your scoop


serves 5


• With the help of an adult, cook a 500g packet of pasta – small shapes like shells or spirals or macaroni or orecchiette or even risonni save 1/4 of a cup of the pasta cooking water


Ingredients
• 2 grated zucchinis
• 1 chopped spring onion
• 1 bag of baby spinach (or you can cheat with a box of frozen spinach)
• 1 cup of cooked peas (fresh or frozen)
• 1 tablespoon butter or oil
• 1 cup of sour cream or cream cheese
• 1/4 cup parmesan (and some more for sprinkling too!)
• 1/2 cup grated cheese


Method
• Melt the butter or oil at the bottom of a saucepan
• Add the zucchini and spinach and cook for 2 minutes

• add the cooked pasta back in to the pot
• Stir through the sour cream or cream cheese and the pasta cooking water that you saved
• Stir through the peas and spring onion
• Stir through the parmesan and grated cheese until it’s all melted
• ENJOY!


Teacher Emilie’s Tasty Tips
• You can put it all in an oven dish, sprinkle over some cornflake crumbs or breadcrumbs with some more parmesan. Bake in a hot oven for 20 minutes until the top is crisp and golden and the pasta is bubbling.
• If I have any left over cauliflower or broccoli or beans from the night before, I chop them up and throw it in too – yummy!

Fluffy banana cupcakes

Even better with cream cheese icing – but tasty on their own.

INGREDIENTS
150g room temperature salted butter
1/2 cup raw sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
3 eggs
3 cups self-raising flour
1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 cup Greek-style yoghurt
6 bananas. Roughly mashed
*optional 1/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

METHOD

Mash the bananas roughly. Chunky is good!

Whisk through the butter, then add the eggs and vanilla and sugar and yoghurt.

Sprinkle the bicarb and whisk through.

With a silicone spatula – fold through the flour (and optional nuts)

Use a spring loaded icecream scoop to disperse the batter evenly into lined muffin tins.

Makes 24.

160 degree Celsius fan forced oven. Bake for 20-22 minutes.

Cool in the pan for 10 mins and then on a cake rack for an hour.

Enjoy.

You can add some flour and thicken it like a stew. Or add more water/stock for a hearty soup. It’s up to you and your mood. It’s fragrant with spices. You can add some chilli if you want it to warm you from the inside out.

Soup? Stew? It’s up to you!

500g casserole beef. Brown in oil

*optional 2 tablespoons of flour if you want a thick stew.

Then add one onion. Roughly chopped. Sauteed till soft.

Then add 400g button mushies, sautee till they release and then reabsorb their juices.

4 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped. Add.

1 or 2 parsnips, peeled and roughly chopped. Add.

2 heaped tablespoons of tomato paste – cook through for a full min

800g chopped tomatoes

1L stock

2 finely sliced large cloves of garlic

Ginger. Peeled. Thick slices

2 star anise

2 cinnamon quills

3 bay leaves

2 tablespoons ground black pepper

3 spring onions, cut in to 2cm chunks to be removed lated

1/3 cup soy sauce

*optional 1/2 teaspoon of chilli flakes

Simmer for 6-8 hours

Remove – cinnamon, bay leaves, star anise, spring onion, ginger

Serve – as a soup

Or on mash or couscous – as a stew

*you could also add some baby potatoes in with the carrots if you don’t have parsnips, but it will lack a layer of sweetness. You might need to add a pinch of sugar.

Compote

When you have too many apples, compote is great. On yoghurt, ice cream, in a pie, under a crumble, or just with a spoon.

2kg Granny Smith apples. Peeled. Cored. Chunked

Zest of on lemon. Remove from the lemon with a peeler to create ribbons of zest that can easily be removed after cooking

3 cinnamon sticks

1cm. Chunk of fresh ginger. Peeled. Cut in large discs that can easily be removed after cooking

A pinch of nutmeg, freshly grated if you have it, otherwise powdered

1/2 cup of sultanas

10 prunes. Halved

700g plums in juice – reserve juice. Halve plums and discard the pit

1 vanilla bean. Halved

3 cups of water

Method :

Throw everything into the pot, water, plum juice – except the plums

Bring to the boil, reduce to the lowest possible temperature

Simmer for 2 hours, no lid

Turn off the heat. Stir. Add more water if you desire.

Add the plums.

Leave to sit for at least an hour or ideally overnight.

It’s wonderfully versatile. I hope you enjoy it.

Here it is with some rustic latticing, bubbling away.

Breakfast muffins

Tasty. Pretty healthy. A fist full of breakfast

You will need:

4 tablespoons of chia seeds

1/2 cup milk

2 overripe bananas. Mashed

50g melted butter

1 tablespoon canola oil

1 cup of Greek yoghurt

2 eggs

1 teaspoon cinnamon or mixed spice

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/3 cup of low GI raw sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 cups oat bran

Berries to top the muffins – fresh or frozen

Method:

Preheat a fan forced oven to 175 degrees

Line a muffin tray with patty pans

Warm half a cup of milk in the microwave. Add 4 tablespoons of chia seeds, stir, leave to swell for 10 mins

Whisk together the wet ingredients

Add the chia mixture

Add the baking powder and stir through well

Add the oat bran

Use an ice cream scoop to evenly fill the muffin tray

Top with berries

Bake for 20-25 mins until golden on top and cooked through

Cool for minimum 1 hour

Enjoy