Monday, July 26, 2010

Budget Menu

Dipping Olive Sprig with Black Olives in Olive Oil Photographic Print

Tuesday ~ Egg, Tomato & Spinach Pizzas
Wednesday ~ Mexican Pinto Bean cakes
Thursday ~ Taco Salad
Friday ~ Mee Goreng
Saturday ~ Spicy Pumpkin & Lentil Tagine
Sunday ~ Pumpkin, Barley & Miso Soup with Fried Wakame
Monday ~ Crab & Corn Omelette
Tuesday ~ Zucchini & Corn Pancakes with Roasted Tomatoes & Dill Cream
Wednesday ~ Vegetable Pancakes
Thursday ~ Corn, Bacon & Zucchini Soup
Friday ~ Corn Chowder with Garlic Croutons
Saturday ~ Bacon, Tomato and Rocket Spaghetti
Sunday ~ Tuna & Mixed Bean Salad with Lemon Dressing (heart friendly)
Monday ~ Beef & Vegetable Bolognaise (heart friendly)

I found this quote for one of the recipes: "...When vegetarian food is good, you don’t miss meat. This miso soup fits the bill; here it’s been “beefed up” with some hearty pearl barley and pumpkin."

Successes from last week:

Middle Eastern Chickpea & Vegetable Salad with is also heart friendly which I think was an accident. I loved all of it, the ingredients work well together so nothing seems hard or whatever.

Fragrant Egg Curry has excellent left-over potential as a spread on toast

Four Bean Chilli with Tortilla Crisps this was a swap recipe

I got a free booklet from Santitarium in the mail. I was very happy the meals are online as well. I saw a lovely recipe that contains sumac, spicy pumpkin & lentil tagine.

Miso Paste Recipe

Freshly Dug Home Grown Organic Carrots 'Early Nantes', Norfolk, UK Photographic Print

Vegie Patties

425g tin chickpeas
5 carrots, grated, lightly steamed
2 cups brown rice, cooked until soft
3 tablespoon tahini
2 teaspoons miso paste
2 spring onions, chopped
4 sheets nori seaweed, chopped
1/2 cup chopped parsley

Whiz chickpeas in a food processor until broken up. Stir in carrot, rice, tahini and miso. Knead well. Mix in spring onion nori and parsley. Form into balls and flatten slightly. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat and cook patties until golden both sides. Makes 12.

From House & Garden AU Feb 2008. This is a recipe we have used many times.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Miso Pastes

Close View of Miso Soup Photographic Print

I am totally learning as I go along with miso soups and miso pastes.

I had an opportunity when I went to my hometown to the chiropractor this Thursday to buy some miso. That is where I got my last packet. It is so easy, even opened it keeps, well I think it does. We had shiro miso before, which I remembered as rice. The shop didn't have a lot of misos so I bought a rice one. However, they are different.

The first one I had was shiro, my first packet ever, and it means sweet rice. The one I have now is kome, which is just rice miso. Shiro smells like Vegemite. And I would deny anyone to tell me that Aussies have been tricked lol. We live in South East Asia after all lol.

So hopefully I will use this packet in recipes and maybe try a different miso next time until I get the hang of this lol. The brand I got was spiral miso.

OK, I think it goes something like colour. Rice is white I think, then there are red ones. Help! The trick is that mine doesn't look very white lol.

I found some useful notes on the saltiness of miso here. There are pictures of the coloured misos here. But still I am unsure if my new miso replaces my old one.

I just found that Janella Purcell has a shop so you can find some of these lovely ingredients. It is here.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Red Lentil Recipe

Boiled Egg with Lime, Salt, Pepper & Vietnamese Coriander Photographic Print

On my menu this week is this recipe. My husband adapted it. It is really lovely.

Fragrant Egg Curry

Ingredients (serves 4)
• 1 Red onion, chopped
• 2 tbs grated fresh ginger
• 2 garlic cloves, crushed
• 2 tbs light oil
• 2 tbs Ayam curry powder
• 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
• 1 cinnamon stick
• 10 dried curry leaves*
• 425g can diced tomatoes
• 8 hard-boiled eggs
• 1/2 cup red lentils
• 1 cup peas (frozen are fine)
• 1 tbs chopped fresh coriander
• 2 teas raw sugar
• Cooked rice, to serve

1. Work on curry sauce first, keep going working with the sauce until
the eggs are put in curry, then add rice to boiling water. The eggs
could be started at the beginning of the cooking.

2. Place onion, ginger and garlic in a food processor and process to
form a paste, use a little oil to help with blending process.

3. Heat the oil in a heavy-based saucepan, add the paste and cook over
low heat for 2-3 minutes.

4. Add the spices and cook for 1 minute, stirring to release the flavours.

5. Add the tomatoes and 500ml (2 cups) water and bring to the boil.
Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 15 minutes.

6. Shell and halve the eggs and add to the pan with the lentils and
peas. Cook over low heat for 15 minutes or until lentils are soft.
Near the end of cooking if mixture is too thick add a small amount of
water (not too much), should be slightly thick paste. Stir in the

7. Serve with cooked rice.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Pork Mince Recipe

Ginger Pork Stir-fry

Serves 4

1 1/2 tablespoons peanut oil
1 stalk lemongrass, outer leaves removed, base very finely chopped
3cm piece ginger, peeled, grated (we cheat with both of these and use a jar in the fridge)
2 garlic cloves, crushed
400g pork mince
150g snow peas, sliced in half diagonally
125g baby corn, sliced in half diagonally
120g button mushrooms, sliced
1 red capsicum, deseeded, sliced
450g packet hokkien noodles, separated
1/4 cup ketcap manis
1 tablespoon soy sauce
12 cup coriander leaves

Heat a wok over high heat until hot. Add 3 teaspoon oil, lemongrass, ginger, garlic and mince. Stir-fry for 3 to 4 minutes or until mince is bornwed. Transfer to a plate. Add remaining oil to wok. Add vegetables. Stir-fry for 4 to 5 minutes or until just tender. Add noodles. Stir-fry for 1 to 2 minutes. Add mince mixture, ketcap manis and soy. Stir-fry for 1 minute. Stir in coriander. Serve.

Chicken Mince Recipes

We haven't made much with chicken mince lately, and have our favourite recipe for chicken mince that I have posted on my main blog here, a long time ago lol (2008). I have been looking through my old foodie magazines, my husband put them in a box, just foodie magazines, and I look through one a day when the sun streams through my window during this record cold winter.

I found a page with various minces (ground meat) including another of my favourites, pork mince. The pork mince one hasn't been published on the Taste site so I will type it up, and try it when I got shopping normally again, maybe in a month or so.

Chicken Paella

Edited to say that on Wednesday night after I posted this, we had a BBQ chicken and tabouli mix as per my menu plan. However we didn't have olive oil (usually it is always there in the cupboard) to make up the tabouli. So I happened to find this recipe (was not related to this post or memory of finding it at all, because I didn't remember lol).

Anyway, the recipe is lovely. We usually make a paella from the McCormick's site. This was just as nice, and the saffron didn't bother us. I vaguely remember Gillian McKeith saying, perhaps on Ready Steady Cook, that basmati rice is easy to digest? Anyway, that is what I found, this paella is very soft and nice. We will be making it again, with double the paprika.

In case I have missed any other great chicken mince recipes I am doing a search. Previously when we first started using chicken mince, we made chicken balls and chicken lasagne. The other recipe is a pasta recipe, creamy. So to find something different and practical, more practical than the balls.

Easy Chicken Chow Mein

Something to go with packets of tabouli mix:

Moroccan Chicken Rissoles

Creamy Chicken & Spinach Bake features pumpkin and crushed potato chips

My reference point (though vague without the thought of actually eating it at this stage) is what would I like to cook if I had chicken mince

Chicken Tacos

Thai Chicken Broth

Chicken, Bacon & Spinach Spaghetti Bolognaise

Chicken, Fennel & Lemon Fettuccine

Fried Rice with Chicken features plum sauce

Chicken Nachos

Chicken Tacos

Chicken Chilli Con Carne

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Cheap Curry Menu

Turmeric and Curry Photographic Print

You may be wondering if the budget is coming good yet. Well, next week looks OK for a change, but I'm sure something will come up lol.

Tuesday 13th ~ Fragrant Egg Curry
Wednesday ~ Curried Tomato & Coriander Rice with Egg (from an old magazine, it is a Keen's Curry recipe) recipe here. Swapped with another recipe from last week
Thursday ~ Spicy Indian Potato & Spinach Curry
Friday ~ Coriander & Corn Omelette Rolls
Saturday ~ Chickpea Burgers With Raita
Sunday ~ Corn Quesadillas with Bean Salad
Monday ~ Chihuahua Rice
Tuesday ~ Capsicum & Corn Enchiladas
Wednesday ~ Pumpkin, Lemon & Broccoli Risotto
Thursday ~ Spicy Potato Cakes
Friday ~ Chicken Tabouli Salad
Saturday ~ Spaghetti Bean Bolognaise
Sunday ~ Creamy Tomato & White Wine Gnocchi
Monday ~ Broccoli & Cauliflower Bake

Extra recipes ~ Pasta & Vegie Soup

Added in this one because my second son brought home a Jap pumpkin
Onion Pancakes with Vegetables & Chilli Sauce

I found it in the heart friendly section (see sidebar), and wanted to try it because it fits in with the vegetarian pancakes theme we have going, love them.

Successes from last week:

Spicy Bean Hotpot I was worried about this. But apart from an issue about which chili to use (I would use whatever you usually put in your chili con carne) it was lovely. We particularly liked how the rice was thick so that made up for the watery tomato, one of my pet hates atm. My daughter had seconds and thirds of the rice (on different days).

Mexican Pita Pizzas this was a real occasion.

Baking from last week:

Ham, Pineapple & Cheese Pizza Scrolls my daughter bought her own ham, and my budgeting allowed up to buy extra cheese

Interesting recipes:

Baby Dampers with Herbed Mascarpone
Broad Bean & Silverbeet Soup

Curried Tomato & Coriander Rice with Egg

From: Good Taste June 2009 (not sure if it is on the Taste site, I can't see it yet.) I suspect it used to be on the Keen site.

Curried Tomato & Coriander Rice with Egg

1 tabs olive oil
1 brown onion, finely chopped
300g ( 1 1/2 cups) basmati rice
1 tab Keen's Curry Powder
750ml (3 cups) vegetable stock
3 large tomatoes, finely chopped
1/3 cup fresh coriander leaves, chopped
4 eggs
Fresh coriander leaves, extra, to serve
Baby spinach leaves, to serve

Heat oil in a large, deep frying pan over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, for 10 minutes or until golden. Add the rice and curry powder. Cook, stirring, for 30 seconds or until aromatic. Add the stock and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 12 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed.

Use a fork to separate the grains. Stir in the tomato and coriander.

Use the back of a spoon to make4 large evenly spaced indents in the rice mixture. Crack an egg into each indent. Cook, covered, for 5-8 minutes or until the eggs are just set.

Top with extra coriander and serve with baby spinach leaves.

Plates Johnson Australia.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Simply Retro

My Tech School year level are having a reunion this month. I was not born in '75, but I thought it fits in with the retro theme.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Homemade Kewpie Mayonnaise & Vegetarian Japanese Pancakes

We have been still making Vegetarian Japanese Pancakes adapted from another site. Post about it here. Here is our adaption so far:

Vegetarian Japanese pancakes

You will need for 12 rather large pancakes or many littler ones:
Pancake batter
1. ½ cup of self-raising flour
2. 1 ½ cup of plain flour
3. 2 large eggs
4. 3 cups of cabbage, thinly sliced
5. 2 cups grated carrot
6. 2 cups grated potatoes
7. 1 tbsp of chopped fresh mint leaves (optional best leave out)
8. 1 tsp of salt
9. 1 tsp of pepper
10. Some milk
11. Some oil
Mix the flours, egg, salt and pepper together add milk to give thick and not runny mixture. Add the vegetables.
Add some oil to a non-stick frying pan, spoon the pancake batter , flatten out with back of spoon.
Fry until both sides are golden brown.
To serve:
Serving without smoked salmon, spread thinly kewpie (Q.P) mayonnaise and some Worcester sauce (rather than tomato sauce only).
QP mayo is much less sweeter than ‘normal’ mayonnaise and that is why it goes well with the vegetable pancake and Worcester.

Kewpie mayonnaise recipes:

Just Hungry

Not Quite Nigella


Other things I found:

Japanese Pancakes from msn

Vegetarian Japanese Pancakes another version from Travelling in Mary Janes

Another Vegetarian Japanese Pancake from Your Weekly Menu (an Australian menu site)

Japanese Pizza Pancake from Not Quite Nigella

Wholemeal version from I Ate Brisbane which is sad as my husband wants to make wholemeal ones too, he is the one who wants to make his own mayonnaise as well.

Cookbook Suggestion

I found this cookbook in my pile of books, magazines and papers. Actually my husband did. It fits in so well with what we have been cooking and menu planning lately. A real treasure.

Lately we have been roasting tomatoes, roasting pumpkin slices and having sliced zucchini in pizzas on pita bread.

Though this book encourages you to buy products like Latina or Old El Paso items, still the rest of the ingredients are cheap. It even has a photo of a paella pan like the one I got for a blog prize.

It was published in 2003 for General Mills Australia. Sometimes you can get these type of books on ebay.

I am just amazed at the vegetarian versions. For example Vegetable Gorditas that includes broccoli (keep in mind I made a Mexican dish with pumpkin recently), Soft Tacos with Spicy Chargrilled Vegetables.

There is a really clear picture of Chimichangas.

The non-vegetarian recipe that I like is Nachos with Chicken & Olives. What a great variation to the one that our family makes, it uses a BBQ chook.

I have gone off Italian, but this book was great. Gnocchi with Parsley Olive Pesto & Grilled Cherry Tomatoes. We are eating rocket pesto that is homemade from a recent sausage recipe on my menu plan for lunch on toast. Lovely.

The soups look fabulous and there is a great recipe for Italian sausages which are hard to come by I feel. There is also the paella recipe that is a variation of our family's one which is from the McCormick spices site.