Thursday, December 1, 2016

EwE - Lamb and Feta Pita Pizza - Pizza Night

This week, Margaret chose the theme of Pizza Night for Eating with Ellie.

I made Ellie's Lamb and Feta Pita Pizzas.  These comprise lamb mince, pinenuts, tomatoes and onion atop a wholemeal pita base.  They were quite delicious!

To see what the others made this week, visit the LYL section of the EwE website. 

Monday, November 28, 2016

Thai Style Beef and Vegetable Stir Fry

I recently made a very good Thai Style Beef and Vegetable Stir Fry from this recipe on Well Nourished.  The original recipe is vegetarian, but the author discusses adding meat to it.

The sauce is really quite good, but I did find it a tad garlicky.  next time, I'd ramp down the garlic.

The great thing is that even though you have to take the time to make the sauce, it makes enough for two stir fries.  This means that you can put the leftovers into the freezer for another day - fabulous!  I like recipes where the hard work pays off like that.

If you like stir fry and you enjoy Asian flavours, this healthy recipe is worth trying out. 

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Abbey of the Roses, Warwick, Queensland

A few weeks ago, my family went to Abbey of the Roses in Warwick for  morning tea and a tour.

The Abbey of the Roses was a former Sisters of  Mercy nunnery, and was built in 1891.  It was in the hands of  the nuns until the late 1980s, when it was sold, and has gone through several iteration in that time.  Its current owners bought the Abbey and restored it to its former glory as far as possible, although previous owners had irreversibly destroyed certain aspects of the interior.

The Abbey is huge, so its owners run it as accommodation, a wedding venue and conduct tours to help pay for its upkeep.

My mother booked us in to the morning tea, which comes with scones, jam and cream with tea or coffee.  This is a glimpse of the tea room, which used to be a school and dining room for the girls taught by the nuns:

Here is our table's tea tray, laden with scones:

Mmm, a half scone with jam and cream:

The resident cat came to check out my Mum:

then jumped onto the lap of the lady sitting next to me - clearly, it's a shy cat:

After morning tea, the owner of the Abbey takes you on a tour of the downstairs areas (not the upstairs accommodation), with patter about the history of the Abbey and the renovations along the way:

This is the restored chapel, one of my favourite parts of the Abbey:

Look at the gorgeous stained glass windows, which were made in Germany and shipped to Australia in treacle for protection:

There are also extensive gardens surrounding the Abbey that you can walk through after the tour - this large pepper tree is one of the most striking features:

If you happen to be on the Darling Downs in your travels, it is worth making a visit to the Abbey of the Roses - but do remember to book (you can't walk in).

8 Locke Street
Cnr Dragon
Warwick QLD Australia
Ph: (61) 7 4661 9777

Friday, November 25, 2016

Chili Con Carne Sausage Rolls

For our Movember morning tea last week, I also made Beef and Bean Sausage Rolls from the Bourke St Bakery Cookbook.  These sausage rolls are inspired by chili con carne.

I was glad I made these, as they were the sole savoury offering on our morning tea menu, and they went quickly.  If I say so myself, they were delicious.  It also used up the puff pastry living in my freezer, taking up precious space. 

The recipe for these sausage rolls is as follows:

1/2 of a 400g tin red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
20ml olive oil
3 chopped garlic cloves
2 small red chillies, deseeded and  finely chopped
1 chopped brown onion
500g beef mince
30g dry breadcrumbs
salt and pepper to taste
3 sheets store-bought ready-rolled puff pastry

1 egg
1/2 cup milk
chilli flakes, for sprinkling

Preheat your oven to 190 degrees Celsius.

Heat the oil in a pan and add the onions, chillies and garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add the kidney beans stir together for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.

Put the bean mixture in a large mixing bowl and add the beef, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper. Using your hands, mix for 3 minutes to thoroughly combine.

Make an egg wash by whisking together the egg, milk and a pinch of salt. 

Take a pastry sheet and cut it in half so that you have two long rectangles.

Divide the beef mixture into six even-sized portions. On a clean work surface, roll each portion out into a log. Place each log in the centre of a pastry sheet and brush one long edge with egg wash. Firmly fold the pastry over, pressing to enclose, leaving the ends open. Cut each roll into 3-4 pieces and place on baking trays lined with baking paper. Brush the top of each roll with egg wash and sprinkle with chilli flakes. Bake for 35-40 mins, or until they are golden brown.


Thursday, November 24, 2016

EwE - Asian Noodle Bowl - Fowl Weather

This week's Eating with Ellie theme is Fowl Weather, chosen by Kayte.  You might not be able to see it, but there is chicken in the dish that I chose, being the Asian Noodle Bowl

This is a terrific dish, because it is full of vibrant, fresh vegetables to go with the soba noodles (I used wholemeal spaghetti, being the alternative) and chicken.

To see what the others made for this week's theme, visit the LYL section of the EwE website.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

TWD - Apple Speculoos Crumble

The second Tuesdays with Dorie recipe from Baking Chez Moi this month is Apple Speculoos Crumble.  This is apple crumble with a twist - namely, that the crumble is made from crumbled speculoos biscuits and butter.

I used gingernut biscuits instead of speculoos, as I already had them in the house.  I also used the optional nuts with the apple, in my case, almonds.  I made two ramekin sized serves instead of one big one.

This  dessert was OK, but I think I like traditional apple crumble better. 

To see what the others made this week, visit the LYL section of the TWD website.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Moustaches for Movember

This month is Movember.  During Movember, guys grow 'taches for money to raise funds for the Movember Foundation to address some of the biggest health issues faced by men: prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and mental health and suicide prevention.

My work has a fundraising team, and I decided to help out by organising a Movember morning tea, entry by gold coin donation.

One of my contributions to the morning tea was Red Velvet Cupcakes, made from the Magnolia Bakery Red Velvet recipe.  I halved the recipe to make 15 cupcakes: 

To make my cupcakes Movember-fit, I adorned them with moustache faces. I iced the top of the cupcakes with vanilla buttercream (my usual Primrose Bakery recipe), then topped that with rounds of white fondant.  I then made the 'taches from rolled black fondant:

It was a little fiddly, but I think they look great.

We raised $62.40 for our Movember team, which is a good outcome as we only have a small office and a lot of people were away on the day.