Banana Bread

An old favourite. My go-to whenever my bananas start getting too mushy and too sweet. Can be made ahead of time, tastes even better the next day. 

Banana Bread (9x5x3 inch loaf pan)

1 3/4 Cup Plain Flour 

3/4 Cup Brown Sugar

1 tsp Baking Powder

1/4 tsp Baking Soda 

1/4 tsp Maldon Salt

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.

3 medium eggs

125g unsalted butter, melted

3 ripe large bananas, chopped

1 tsp vanilla extract

  1. Combine wet ingredients in a medium bowl.
  2. Fold into dry ingredients until just combined. Do not over mix. 
  3. Pour into loaf pan. Bake 60 min at 180°C.
  4. Remove from oven and cool in wire rack. 
  5. Leave to stand a few hours before eating. 



Spinach and Feta Quiche

Yes, quiche again. It is just such an easy make and popular dish. With two little children at home, I took all the shortcuts I could. Frozen shortcrust, frozen spinach, canned mushrooms. I did marinate the feta myself but that was because I was too skint to pay the ridiculous mark up on the garlic and herb feta the supermarket sold.

Spinach and Feta Quiche (9.5 inch pie)

1 packet (375g) frozen shortcrust pastry

3 cloves of garlic (minced)

1 medium onion (minced)

50g Butter

450g Frozen Chopped Spinach

1/2 can of button mushrooms

100g Feta marinated in olive oil, garlic, parsley, oregano

150g Shredded Cheddar Cheese

6 eggs

1 Cup Full Cream Milk

Ground Black Peppercorn and Sea Salt

  1. Defrost pastry. Roll out and rest for 15 min. It will shrink a little. Place into pie pan and bake at 190ºC for 10 min. Set aside.
  2. Fry garlic and onion in butter until fragrant and onion is glassy. Add in spinach (defrosted and drained) and mushrooms. Season wth pepper and salt. Add in feta and half of the cheddar before turning off the heat. Set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk eggs and milk. Season with pepper and salt.
  4. Preheat oven to 190ºC.
  5. Scatter some cheddar on pie base. Pour in spinach mixture. Pour egg mixture over and break up spinach mixture a little. Bake at 190ºC for 35 min or until centre is firm.
  6. 15 min in, scatter remaining cheddar over quiche. Return to oven.
  7. After removing from oven, leave to rest for 20 min before slicing.

Chicken Pot Pie

A friend said it was easy. I’m not so sure. Maybe because I’m not practised at it. It was fun learning new things though (wet the sides of the ramekins! Make sure the pastry sticks). Tasted good too. Do not skip the Worchestershire sauce. Lea Perrins for the win!

Chicken Pot Pies (makes 8 small pies)

1 packet frozen puff pastry

8 small ramekins

  1. First, take out your frozen puff pastry to defrost to room temperature. While it sits, you can do everything else.
  2. Wash and set aside 8 small ramekins.

50g Butter

3 Cloves of Garlic (minced)

10g Oregano

10g Parsley

600g diced boneless chicken leg

500ml Chicken Broth

10g Rosemary

Black pepper and Parsley for taste

  1. Heat butter in a saucepan. Add minced garlic and herbs. Add chicken.
  2. Deglaze with chicken broth and add black pepper, rosemary and parsley to taste.
  3. Simmer for a few minutes. Remove chicken and set aside.
  4. Reduce broth by a third. Sieve to remove herb pieces. Set aside.

50g Butter

50g Plain flour

50ml whipping cream

1/2 lemon’s juice

1 tsp brown sugar

2 Tbsp Worchestershire Sauce

200g Frozen carrots, peas, and corn

Nutmeg, Salt and Pepper to taste

  1. Heat butter over low heat. Stir in flour with a whisk. Cook until golden.
  2. Add reduced chicken broth while stirring vigorously.
  3. Add cream, lemon juice, sugar, and Worchestershire sauce.
  4. Add mixed vegetables.
  5. Add chicken back in and more parsley and oregano.
  6. Season with nutmeg, salt, and pepper.

–Assembly–

  1. Preheat oven to 180ºC.
  2. Flour table generously. Roll out puff pastry. Cut into rounds at least 2cm larger in diameter than the ramekins.
  3. Divide chicken mixture evenly between the ramekins. Wet the outside edges of the ramekins.
  4. Place pastry rounds on ramekins and press tightly along the sides.
  5. Using a knife or fork, stab small holes in the pastry.
  6. Bake at 180ºC for 30min or until pastry has risen and browned.

 

 

 

Gingerbread Men

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What is Christmas without some festive food? 🙂 Someday I may get down to making the savoury stuff but my friends do such a fantastic job of it there really isn’t much point for me to try. So this year I decided to try out the perennial crowd pleaser, Gingerbread Men. I tried a recipe from Betty Crocker but substituted molasses sugar for the molasses and it turned out really dry and, frankly, quite inedible. My bad. I tried again using a recipe from Real Simple. I used treacle this time (which is apparently what the British call molasses. No wonder i couldn’t find molasses anywhere!) and they were delicious!

A touch of icing and a troupe of gingerbread men were ready to be deployed. They were soft, sweet, and spicy. The kids loved them. And they make lovely little table gifts.

You can make the dough in advance and bake the cookies fresh when you feel like it. The kids will have a field day cutting out the gingerbread men and you can mold their arms and legs into funny poses too. Have fun!

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Hello world!

I am not really the sort who lives life constantly updated and updating. I used to check my Facebook account quarterly, as in 4 times a year. Yeah, I know, time to crawl out of the cave, right? In comparison to the tweeting, posting, blogging generation of today, I am a dinosaur. I like sitting down with friends, having a chat over tea. I like talking to people, having a conversation, having a party. I like using pen and paper. Shocking. 🙂

So I wouldn’t blame you for asking ‘Why?’. Why would I start a blog? Well, as much as I love pen and paper, there is something magnificent in technology that allows us to store memories so neatly and share them with so many all over the world with such ease. I’ve been doing a lot of ‘homemaking’ recently and thought a blog would help me record my projects and also share what I learned with the wide world out there, and you. 😉

So thank you for reading my blog and sharing in my experience. Do leave comments just to say hi or let me know what you think or how you may have done things differently. I am learning along the way too.

Cheers!