A MUNCH FOR LUNCH

Heya there…its been a while since I dropped by with anything new-sorry! We had shearing last week and half the week before and at the end of a few long and damn hit days of back lining and drenching 3000+ sheep, the last thing I felt like doing was cooking! Forgive me as Im sure those with sheep or that have shorn, back lined and drenched in the past should! Also its been quite hot – high 30’s/low 40’s for a few days and my house is like an oven on a cool day with no aircon or air flow, so I dont tend to try n heat the house up by baking if I can help it.

Anyway..I have done a touch of baking over the past 4 days so I’ll share some tasty recipes with you now.
First, we had our farm adviser/number cruncher come out and do our farm budget and it was 38 degrees that day, so Jude (mum in law; champion; workhorse etc) cranked her little pie maker up and made a heap of sausage rolls in her pie maker..sounds strange? Tasted great! I made some honey cinnamon flakes, a new recipe I found while flicking through a magazine. This one requires a food processor or a fair bit of hard yakka – I choose the food pro! These were simple to make and a big hit with everyone who tried them. The only downside I could see was that the dough had to be refrigerated for 1/2 an hour, but aside from that, great recipe! Oh n super easy to make a double batch and freeze half in glad wrap too. Just pull out, defrost and use like normal.

HONEY CINNAMON FLAKES
250 g Chilled butter
3 Cups Plain flour
1 1/3 Cups icing sugar mixture
1 egg
2 Tbsp Honey
tsp Ground Cinnamon

Place butter, flour and 1 cup icing sugar in a food processor. Process till mix resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add egg and honey. Process till mixture just comes together.

Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Knead gently till smooth. Divide mix in half and shape into 2 discs. Wrap in gladwrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 170 degrees. Line 3 baking trays. Roll 1 dough disc between 2 sheets of baking paper until 5mm thick. Cut discs/shapes out using cookie cutters and then re roll and recut till all gone. Place shapes onto prepared trays about 2cms apart. Bake, 1 tray at a time for about 6/8 minutes or till pale golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Combine remaining icing sugar in a bowl with cinnamon. Dust shapes with icing/cinnamon mixture using a sifter.

Another recipe Ive recently tried was one for the kids lunchboxes, Honey Soy Marinated Drumsticks. The recipe is pretty easy – just a few sauces combined and then the waiting game while it marinates, so here goes!

HONEY & SOY DRUMSTICKS
12 chicken drumsticks
2 cloves crushed garlic
1 t grated ginger
1/3c soy sauce
1/3c honey
2 T water
1t sesame oil
(Thats the ingredients the recipe asked for but added a couple of others)
1T hoisin sauce
2T plum sauce

Combine all the sauces plus the garlic and ginger till its really well mixed. Place the drumsticks in a marinating tray or just a plastic container will do the trick, pour the marinade over to cover all the drumsticks. Now to get grotty – which I love! Get your hands in and massage the marinade into the drummies – you can use gloves if your scared of getting grotty I suppose! 😉
Put the container in the fridge and leave for as long as possible before you need to bake them, overnight is the way to go.
Spread a tray with baking paper and lay the drummies out on it so they have room around them to cook thoroughly and bake for about 40 minutes at 150 degrees or till chicken is browned and cooked through. Serve in the kids lunch box with a little asian slaw or a garden salad or for tea with fried rice and some steamed asian greens or stir fry vegies. Yummo!

On Thursday, my littlest chickadee turns 6 (where does the time go???) and I am having a little party for her with a few friends after school on Friday, so I am going to include a photo of her journey in life so far and a special birthday treat each day till Thursday! First up is Ella, 4 months old and super cute and very cheeky!

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My birthday recipe of the day is a fave with my kids and every other person who’s ever tried it! Never had a complaint about this yummy one, and in saying that, it’s definitely not one for the weight watchers!

CHOCOLATE BUBBLE SQUARES
125g melted butter
1 1/2c firmly packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1c rice bubbles or similar
3/4c desiccated coconut
1/4c cocoa powder

Bubble Topping
200g milk choc melts
125g butter
1c rice bubbles

Combine butter, brown sugar and eggs in a bowl and mix thoroughly. Stir in dry ingredients and then spread into a greased and lined lamington tray. Bake in a moderate oven, approx 160- 180 degrees for about 25 minutes. Take out of the oven and cool in the tray.
Once it’s cooled down, melt butter and chocolate in a small pot till combined. Pour into a bowl and stir rice bubbles through it. Spread this mixture over the top of the base and stick it in the fridge till the top sets. Cut into 2 x 2 cm squares and share with friends.

I’ll be back tomorrow with my second installment of Ella pics and another couple of recipes flr you to try out at hime, so till then, HAPPY BAKING!

Cheers Tash x

FOOD FOR THE COUNTRY SOUL

Hey all..
A few nights ago it was pretty chilly, so I decided to whack the old family fave, shepherd’s pie. I always sneak a few vegies into mine so that T actually eats them cause he’s a bloody fussy git & wouldnt otherwise. I whizz carrots, peas, beans & corn in the food processor (aka – my best mate!) dont make them a paste, just really finely chopped so the kiddies cant tell what it is and it kinda hides out in the pie so they get the health benefits and you dont get the moans and groans! I also had some pumpkin in the fridge that was getting close to its use by date, so I mashed that into the spud topping. That also stuffed my husband up cause he hates pumpkin with a passion & he still doesnt know it was in there…;) sneaky hey!

Anyhow enough jibbering…heres the recipe for our fave COUNTRY SOUL FOOD SHEPHERD’S PIE!

500g minced beef (healthsmart if your into that!)
1onion finely diced
Vegies of your choice whizzed to fine dice
Gravy powder
Tomato sauce
Bbq sauce
Garlic
Mixed dried herbs
1c water
6/8 spuds – you can NEVER have too much mashed spud on top of a shepherds pie.
Butter & milk to mash your spuds
1c grated tasty cheese

Fry up your mince and onions in a bit of olive oil. When brown, chuck in your vegies and cook for 2 minutes. Combine gravy, sauces, garlic, dried herbs and water in a small bowl or jug and stir till all combined. Pour into the mince mixture and stir through till gravy thickens slightly. Pour the mixture into a baking dish & set aside.
Steam spuds (& other vegies you may like mashed – sweet potato & pumpkin are also yummy). When soft, mash with butter and milk till smooth and spread over the top of your beef mixture till the top is covered. Cover with cheese and bake at 180 till the cheese melts and starts to brown. Serve with crusty bread & enjoy!!!

Oh n while your on the blog trail, go n check a look at my mate Gemma’s blog…http://cookcleanerquiltmaker.blogspot.com.au/
Shes one clever cookie who’s addicted to rum, quilts, bakes & is generally pretty crafty! Tell her Tash sent you! Cheers..

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2 INGREDIENT NUTELLA CAKE

Hey all..
Just started baking today for school and also for shearing which starts tomorrow. We dont cook for the shearers but I have 3 workers and 4 schoolkids that love afternoon tea & lunchbox snacks. I was flicking through facey yesterday and came across this recipe I just had to try! Sounded too easy and good to be true, so he goes…1double sized 2 INGREDIENT NUTELLA CAKE coming right up..

The 2 ingredients are:

4 Large eggs (room temperature)
240 g Nutella

And this is how you do it!
NOTE:: Make sure you beat the eggwhites for the whole 3/5 minutes so they triple in size and be super gentle when folding – NOT stirring – the nutella through the whites!!!

Step 1. Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Line a 20cm round spring-form cake pan with baking paper and set aside.
Step 2. Place eggs into mixing bowl and beat on high speed until the mixture triples in volume. This will take 5-7 minutes.
Step 3. Spoon Nutella into a medium glass bowl and microwave for 15-20 seconds until it is soft.
Step 4. Spoon one third of the egg mixture and fold using a metal spoon to mix in Nutella until entirely combined. Continue with another third of egg mixture and then again until all the egg and Nutella is combined.
Step 5. Spoon mixture into cake pan and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a skewer placed into the centre comes out clean.
Step 6. Cool cake in pan entirely, before removing from pan. Slice and serve.

I doubled it cause no single sized cake lasts more than a day around here and it’s about to get busy pretty quickly with shearing/backlining sheep and moving them to and from the yards.

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