Thursday, June 7, 2018

Nana's Farm Soup - Lamb Shanks and Vegetables - Irish Scotch Broth

2 lamb shanks, 1 cup pearl barley, 2 onions, 2 celery stalks, 2 carrots, 1 swede, 2 small turnips, 2 parsnip, one tomato, 1 leek, salt and freshly ground black pepper, 2 bay leaves, 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce.
Chopped flat leaf parsley or green shallots to serve.
Heat oil in a large pot or fry pan.
Add shanks and cook over a medium heat until browned on each side.

In a slow cooker, a saucepan on the stove or, for those in a hurry, in a pressure cooker. place all ingredients and cover with 2–3 chicken or vegetable stock with a cup of V8 juice (optional).
Additions Optional - to suit your taste:
1 can chopped tomatoes
1 tablespoon dried mixed herbs
Add diced fresh or canned tomatoes
Small new potatoes
Smoked streaky bacon
Bacon bones
Garlic cloves
Add parsley stems for added flavour - if left whole they are easy to remove before serving
Lemon thyme
Frozen peas
Dry soup mix
White wine or red wine or beer or stout

Substitute soup mix with brown or white rice, pasta or baked beans

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Japanese Style Ramen Noodles

Ramen Noodles:

700ml chicken or pork stock (home made is best), 3 garlic cloves, halved, 4 tbsp soy sauce plus extra to season,1 tsp Worcestershire sauce, thumb-sized piece of ginger sliced, ½ tsp Chinese five spice, pinch of chilli powder, 1 tsp white sugar (optional), 375g ramen noodles, 400g sliced cooked pork, green prawns, chicken, 2 tsp sesame oil

Broccoli, yellow beans, green beans, water chestnuts, sugar snap peas, capsicums,  carrot, onion, capsicum, baby corn, bamboo shoots

Additional if desired:
baby spinach, 4 tbsp sweetcorn, 4 boiled eggs peeled and halved, 1 sheet dried nori, finely shredded, sliced green spring onions or shallots, sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds.

More:  Ramen (/ˈrɑːmən/) (拉麺, ラーメン rāmen, IPA: [ɾaꜜːmeɴ]) is a Japanese dish. It consists of Chinese-style wheat noodles served in a meat or (occasionally) fish-based broth, often flavored with soy sauce or miso, and uses toppings such as sliced pork (叉焼 chāshū), dried seaweed (海苔 nori), menma (麺麻), and green onions (葱 negi). Nearly every region in Japan has its own variation of ramen, from the tonkotsu (pork bone broth) ramen of Kyushu to the miso ramen of Hokkaido.

A wide variety of ramen exists in Japan, with geographical and vendor-specific differences even in varieties that share the same name. Ramen can be broadly categorized by its two main ingredients: noodles and broth.

Scene from Japanese movie Tampopo helps explain Ramen - Master of Ramen Scene

To make perfect ramen yourself start with stock - Tonkotsu-ramen-broth-at-home

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Slow Cooker BBQ Beef Ribs by Sharron

Slow Cooker Barbequed Beef Ribs

Recipe by Sharron found on

"Beef ribs with a homemade BBQ sauce in a slow cooker (or on top of stove, if you have the time). Very, very good made on High for 4 hours...better on Low for 8. Serve over hot cooked rice."

1 cup water 1 cup ketchup 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste 3/4 cup brown sugar 1/2 cup vinegar 2 tablespoons prepared mustard 1 tablespoon salt 2 pounds beef back ribs

Mix water, ketchup, tomato paste, brown sugar, vinegar, mustard, and salt in a slow cooker, stirring to dissolve brown sugar and salt.

Place short ribs into the sauce and stir to coat. Set cooker on Low, cover, and cook for 8 hours.

Serve over rice or with salad or on a roll as a slider

Homemade Savoury Sausage and Vegetable Rolls

So simple - Pastry 1 cup SR flour, 1/4 cup oil, 1/4 cup water, good pinch of salt (or sugar if making sweets). Roll out pastry into thin sheet.

Sausage mixture - 3 spicy sausages filling broken up, 1 egg, up to one cup of chopped and or shredded vegetables - I used onions, celery, carrots and cabbage - but whatever you have is fine. Mix well with hands. To make consistency right add 1/4 - 1/2 cup dry cracker crumbs (or bread or oats) enough to make mixture 'unsoggy' and mix evenly. You can change recipe to suit your taste - more or less of veg or even no veg but does change the texture. Place a roll of the mixture onto the pastry and cut so enough on either side to join with slight overlap. This will be underneath so turn over and cut into lengths desired, make a slit or two in each roll. Brush with milk and put in a preheated 180 degree C oven for 25 minutes until browned. Serve with sauce.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Aussie Style Juicy Pork Patties / Burgers

If you want a juicy tasty burger try fresh minced pork instead of beef or half and half.

In a bowl mix 500g minced pork, 1 egg, 1 slice bread wet with enough milk to soak into slice, 1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley and one of coriander, one teaspoon chopped garlic, 1 grated zucchini, 2 tablesppons cold cooked onions, salt and pepper.

Mix gently until combined. Avoid handling the meat too much, form them into round patties, and refrigerate them for 15 minutes before cooking.

(A great recipe is by Manu -

To cook hamburgers that stay in one piece don't have too many liquidy things in mixture.  Make sure they are cold when you put them in the pan or BBQ, AND do not keep flipping them. That will make the burger fall apart for sure.

Preheat a heavy base frypan or BBQ plate to high heat.  Brush with oil.  Cook patties for 5 minutes per side until well browned.  

Serve on a toasted burger bun or toast with fresh salad. sauce and more fried onions.  Some like to add lettuce, tomato, cucumber, bacon, pickles, cheese, beetroot and a soft fried egg - well in Australia anyhow.  That'd be a 'Burger With The Lot'. Crunchy chips on the side!  Dinner done!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Spicy Vegetable Fritters for Two

Want to use up some vegetables from the crisper or feel you need a vegetable boost then try these Vegetable Fritters.

Chose Vegetables to grate or chop - one cup for two people.
Eg: carrots, zucchini, onions, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, sweet potato, parsnip, potato, green onion, grated parmesan cheese is a good flavour enhancer.

Sift 1 cup all-purpose flour with added spices (eg., cumin, chili, pepper, garlic, salt, ground pepper).

Place oil in a solid fry pan to 1cm height and heat to medium.

Prepare batter.  Flour and 1 cup ice cold water; wisk with fork to combine. Add in one cup of your chosen grated vegetables and mix well.

Cabbage Onion Fritters with curry powder and spicy salsa and dukkah topping

Heat oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add heaped tablespoonfuls of the vegetable batter mixture to the pan and cook in batches for 2-3 minutes each side or until golden and crispy. Don't over crowd pan. Transfer to a plate and keep warm. Serve fritters with favorite topping / sauce - minted yoghurt, salsa or chutney.

Sauces - Toppings:
Avocado Yogurt Sauce
1/2 cup greek yogurt plain
1/2 medium-sized avocado ripen
1 teaspoon dill chopped fresh
1 teaspoon chives chopped fresh

Minted yoghurt, salsa or chutney, to serve.  Dukkah powder.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Marshmallow Pavlova With Custard Cream

4 egg whites, 1 cup caster sugar, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, 3/4 tsp white vinegar, 1 tbsp corn flour.
Whipped cream, custard cream - see below (great recipe to use up egg yolks)
Seasonal fresh fruits such as strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, passion fruit pulp, mango, banana and kiwi fruit sliced.

Preheat oven to 120°C/250°F. Line oven tray with baking paper.  Mark approx 7-inch circle on foil. Beat egg whites in small bowl with electric mixer until soft peaks form; gradually add sugar, beating until sugar dissolves. Add vanilla and vinegar; beat until combined.  Fold through corn flour.  Spread meringue into circle on foil, building up at the side to about 3 inches in height. Smooth side and top of pavlova gently. Using spatula blade, mark decorative grooves around side of pavlova; smooth top again.  Bake pavlova about 1½ hours. Turn oven off; cool pavlova in oven with door ajar.

Cut around top edge of pavlova (the crisp meringue top will fall on top of the marshmallow centre). Fill inside pavlova with custard cream topped with whipped cream.  Decorated with fresh fruits. Enjoy!

Custard Cream
4 egg yolks, 1/4 cup sugar, 1 tsp vanilla, 1 tbsp cornflour, 1/4 cup milk, 1/2 cup cream
Beat egg yolks, sugar, vanilla and cornflour until smooth and creamy.  Put into saucepan, gradually add cream and milk, stir until smooth.  Stir over medium heat until sauce thickens, bring to the boil, reduce heat, simmer 2 mins.  Remove from heat, allow to become cold, stirring occasionally.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Slow Braised Lamb Shanks

What you need: 4 large lamb shanks, 2 tbls flour, salt, pepper, oil, 1 large onion diced, 1 rasher of bacon diced, 1 clove of garlic minced, 1 tbls ketchup, 1 tbls soy sauce, 1 tbls Worcestershire sauce, 1 tbls brown sugar, 1 tsp dry mustard, ¼ cup vinegar, ½ cup water
What you do:
Trim excess fat off shanks. Roll in flour seasoned with the salt and pepper. Brown shanks in a heavy based pan. Remove.  Saute onion, bacon and garlic and then add browned shanks. Combine all other ingredient and pour over shanks. Bring to a boil then turn down to very low simmer, cover and cook on the stove-top for about 2-2½ hours or until meat super tender.  

Monday, January 9, 2017

Pantry Staples - Frugal, Practical

Nothing for dinner - what's in your cupboard?

What foods should be in your cupboard, freezer and fridge so you can always cook something healthy for dinner?  Nothing for dinner - what's in your cupboard?

Pantry (Any additional Ideas?)

Tomatoes as base for pasta sauce, curry, stew and soup
Legumes - Kidney beans, Chickpeas (spiced baked chickpeas as a snack are filling and delicious or some hummus dip). Lentils to add to soups and stews and meat dishes to reduce the meat needed then over rice, pasta, mashed veg or on toast or with bread and butter to dip extends all measl a lot further
Tinned Baked Beans - quick easy snack on toast!  Or added to casserole
Tinned fish - tuna, salmon, sardines etc - make creamy mornays, noodle casseroles, on toast, with salads etc
Coconut milk - great to add to a curry or can use yogurt
Fruits - apple, pears, apricots, peaches etc make yummy low cost deserts such as pies and crumbles

TOMATO - king of 'fruits'  - tinned, dried, semi-dried, dehydrated as tomato powder - FRESH in a bulk buy - these delicious fruits deserve a place alone as can be used in so many ways and prices are reasonable.  Home made pasta sauces!!  Always tastier and free of additives!! On toast, in stews etc etc.

Herbs & Spices
Pepper, Curry Powder, Cumin, Corriander, Paprika for curries etc
Mustard, Bay leaves, Chilli powder or flakes,
Dried Herbs: Oregano, Basil, Thyme, Rosemary, Sage, Parsley
Nutmeg, Cinnamon,

Stock powder, jelly or liquid tetra-packs, Tomato paste
Powdered soup - eg french onion soup to coat meats and slow bale or coke chicken, apricot chicken etc. Cream of chicken soup for tasty creamy casseroles and try a different packet each week until get your favs

Oils, Sauces, Vinegars
Oils, Soy, Tabasco, Tomato, Fish, Sesame, Salsa, Worchestshire, Vinegar - wine, balsamic, apple cider; lemon juice

Honey, Peanut Paste, Aussie Vegemite, Jams
Dried Staples
Pasta of all types from the semi dry chinese egg noodles, udon etc to all the Italian style pastas - pappardelle, farfalle, shells, campanelle, angel hairr, gnocchi, spaghetti, lasagna
Rice - white, brown, basmati (fragrant), jasmine
Couscous with all types of spice dishes
Rolled oats, flat breads - make pizza bases or wraps
Barley, dried peas, dried soup mix, peanuts, beans
Flours, Yeast Powder, Baking Powder, Baking Soda
Thicken stews and soups, make muffins, no-knead breads
Pie and Quiche Bases
Raw Sugar, Salt,

Potatoes of all types (baked, boiled, mashed, chipped etc), Kumara or sweet potatoes, Carrots, Onions, Garlic, ginger - types that last longer to avoid food waste and good to boil for mash, roast, add to stews etc
Citrus - lemons, oranges etc and if in bulk juice and freeze.
Bananas - if getting over ripe freeze and/or use for muffins or cakes
Any fruits on special

Flours, Yeast Powder, Baking Powder, Baking Soda
Thicken stews and soups, make muffins, no-knead breads
Pie and Quiche Bases
Raw Sugar, Salt,

Yoghurt - instead of coconut in savoury cooked meals, like pasta and curries - add at the last minute so it doesn't split
Cheeses - all types to taste - over pasta, with noodles, toasted sandwiches - great concentrated protein and fills people up

Fridge / Freezer
EGGS - a great whole food and so many ways to cook - very satisfying and filling and good energy food!
Any types of Vegetables, Peas, corn, green beans as can be added to many dishes.
Home made pasta sauces!!  Always tastier and free of additives!!
Meats purchased at discount prices. Mince and sausages can make many interesting low cost meals that are tasty and filling.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Fresh Homemade Chicken Soup

Soups ready in an hour and tastes devine.  Budget meal.
Recipe for newbies:  1 packet chicken pieces (I used cut up thighs as more flavour - can use cheapest available such as drumsticks and remove skin, cook with bone in as also good for more flavour and after cooked take meat off bones and return to soup), 2 onions chopped, 1 large carrot chopped, 6 stalks celery chopped, 2 bay leaves, 1 teaspoon ground black peppercorns, enough chicken stock to cover.  Bring to boil and immediately turn down to a gentle simmer.  Cook until chicken cooked and vegetables tender.  Add salt to taste.  Enjoy!

Or try this recipe from a great chef at Food Wishes made a simple quick easy one step soup - and follow his YouTube Channel!

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Banana Ketchup


2 tbsp olive oil, 1 large onion, roughly chopped, salt, 3 garlic cloves, minced, 3 red chillies, roughly chopped, thumb-sized piece of ginger, grated, 1 tsp coriander seeds, 5 cloves, 1 cinnamon stick, 1/2 tsp black pepper, 1 tsp allspice, ground, 1/4 tsp nutmeg, ground, 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, 1/4 cup cider vinegar, 1/3 cup dark rum, 1 tbsp dark soy sauce, 5 overripe bananas, mashed, 1 lemon, juice & zest, 1 lime, juice & zest, 1 tsp dried thyme, 1 bay leave

Heat the oil in a medium pot. Add the onions and a little bit of salt and sweat them over a medium heat until they turn soft and translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic, chillies, ginger and dried spices and fry over a low heat for about a minute, stirring all the time, until the mix starts to give off a fragrant smell.

Add sugar, vinegar, rum, soy sauce, bananas and the citrus and herbs. Stir well and bring to a boil. Cover and let simmer over a low heat for about an hour. Stir from time to time to check nothing is burning.

Remove from heat. Fish out the cinnamon stick and the bay leave and discard . Blend the rest of the liquid to a fine sauce.  Fill your ketchup into a suitable botle. The ketchup will keep for a few weeks in the fridge.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Honey Baked Chicken Pieces

Gotta love one dish recipes with four ingredients.  Honey Baked Chicken Pieces is an easy and delicious dish for the whole family!

If you aren’t keen on chicken on the bone, you can substitute chicken pieces – but reduce the cooking time to prevent it from over-cooking.  

Need: 1 kg Chicken Pieces, 3 tbsp Honey, 3/4 cups White Wine or chicken stock, 1 packet French Onion soup powder.  Place chicken pieces in a baking dish. Mix the soup mix with the wine (or stock) together with the honey and pour over the top. Cover with foil and bake at 160 degrees for an hour, then remove the cover to brown (another 10 minutes at 200 degrees). Serve with Fried Rice or steamed Asian vegetables


Monday, December 28, 2015

Creamy Chicken-Mushroom Casserole

1 tblsp olive oil, 1 of butter
2 chicken breasts cut into pieces, dredged in seasoned flour.
salt and black pepper
1 onion,1 carrot, 1 stick celery finely chopped
2 cups chopped field mushrooms
small bunch chopped of parsley
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 heaped tablespoon plain flour
1 and 1/2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup cream
Heat the oil and butter in a frying pan until sizzling. Add the chicken to the pan and cook for 2–3 minutes on each side until sealed.  Remove and put aside.  Add onions, carrots and celery and fry over moderate heat for 3–4 minutes, or until softened.  Add flour and stir through.  Slowly add chicken stock while stirring to form sauce.  Add mushrooms to the pan with thyme, salt and pepper.  Put lid on.  Cook for 10 mins at LOW heat. Test if vegetables cooked, add chicken and cook further 5 mins or until chicken cooked through (don't boil or you'll overcook chicken and curdle cream.  Needs to be low heat).  Add parsley and cream and stir through.  Can keep in warm oven until ready to serve.  Serve over jasmine rice or cooked potatoes.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Ye Ol' Pork Roast with Crispy Crackle

Yummy and satisfying isnthe traditional pork roast and crispy crackle with moist meat and rich porky gravy!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Raw Foods

Cookin' fun when no cooking involved ☺ Using the Oscar Neo can juice, puree, make sorbet, ice creams, baby foods, pasta and much more.  Health plus plus!  Also delicious, even kale and pear juice though looks like swamp or drain algae bloom!

Monday, October 12, 2015

Jamie Olivers Roast Chicken in Milk

Jamie Oliver's Chicken in Milk - from internet
A rather odd recipe on Jamie Oliver's site. It calls for roasting a chicken in a big pot with a pint of milk, a lot of lemon zest, a cinnamon stick, and unpeeled garlic cloves. Brown a whole chicken in copious amounts of olive oil or butter.  Pour in some milk, two lemons' worth of zest, a cinnamon stick, and fresh sage leaves. Scatter in a handful of garlic cloves in their jackets. Oliver says to throw away all that extra fat but I recommend saving it for cooking potatoes or vegetables. Put in the oven and roast for an hour and a half.  Covered for 1/2 the time.  Then uncovered to finished.  Its unexpected combination of ingredients and method you may think could never work but you be surprised and delighted with this dish.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Simple Pork & Onion Stew

500g pork meat (anything on special - I used leg meat so no need to cook as long as tougher cuts).
3 large onions (I usually add more as love the onions)
1 tablespoon plain flour
1 cup water (enough to just cover meat & onions _ less is better to concentrate flavour)
1 cup tomato sauce (I use Fountain spicy red)
2 teaspoons raw sugar
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
Salt and ground pepper to taste - I usually add after cooked so I can balance flavours

1.  Brown diced pork meat - do this a bit at a time in hot pan with a little oil or oil spray and remove as soon as brown so not fully cooked but well browned as this adds to flavour
2.  Lower heat to medium.  Add chopped onions to pan with a little more oil - a table spoon - and brown nicely
3.  Add flour and mix through.   Add rest of ingredients and mix through.  Lower heat to low and cook slowly - no lids but can put a little grease proof paper over meat to keep moisture in. Cook until meat is break apart tender.
4.  Serve with mashed root vegetables and greens or over rice.


Sunday, June 14, 2015

Home Cooking Feb to May 2015

Simple Honey Chicken Wings - Easy! Tasty!

Delicious honey chicken wings - yummy!

Simply add one packet of Continental French Onion soup powder, 1/3 cup honey, 3/4 cup water, 1 tablespoon Masterfoods Australian mustard, 12 chicken wings.

Cover and bake in 180 degree oven for one hour.  Remove cover and bake further 1/2 hour.

Serve and enjoy.

Home Cooking

Have been absent from blogs for about 6 months!  Still cooking but just not posting recipes. Mainly just meat and veg meals that mum enjoys.

Pulled pork, rice and vegetables

Steak and onions with baked potato

Mini meat pies

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Crumbed Lamb Leg Steak - Mint Gravy & Mash

Crumbed Lamb Leg Steaks, Mashed potato/pumpkin - pump-tate - mint gravy and and extra veg - Mm delicious!
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