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Roast Asparagus

8 Nov

I’ve managed to get back in the habit of taking photos of food for the blog.  But then I don’t get around to posting for a while, and since my “style” tends towards drive-by-cooking I can never remember exactly what I did by the time I DO remember to to blog it.

Hence the silence.

Anyway, one thing I do remember is how I cook spuds.  And since they kindly included themselves in the photo I know how I cooked the asparagus.  Technically they were baked, not roasted, because there was no meat involved, but it would be the same if there WAS meat in there, so I’m sticking with roasted.

Roast Asparagus

I have my oven on 200c/400f to bake potatoes.

Trim the woody ends of asparagus.

In the last ten or 15 minutes of baking time chuck your asparagus in too, lightly sprinkle with salt if you want, and roll in whatever fat you have in there.

Turn and check each five minutes ’til they look good.  The ones in the photo were cooked for 15 minutes.

Convince your children that yes they do like asparagus, and they have so eaten it happily before, and they just need to get used to it again because it is a seasonal food.

All done!

. . .

. . .

For more great recipes check out the Tasty Tuesday link ups at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam.



Hassleback Potatoes

6 Sep

When I was having a look around at recipes, they are traditionally made with butter and breadcrumbs, so I decided to see what I could come up with.

Turn the oven on hot – 220c/430f

I used six potatoes.  First of all you want to slice the scrubbed spuds almost all the way through, at distances of a few mls.  The slices won’t necessarily spread at this point, it might happen during cooking.


Place the spuds in whatever baking dish you will use.

Next I crushed four cloves of garlic, mixed it with about 4 Tbs olive oil and 1 tsp salt (I totally forgot to measure), and spooned that over the top of the potatoes before putting them in the oven.  Bake for about an hour, and you are all done.   The sky is the limit with what you use as a topping, I definitely plan on making these again and mixing it up with the flavours. 🙂

My one caution would be, if you’re wanting a fancy looking dinner, don’t do these if it’s your first time.  I got a couple that looked right, but cut right through in a couple of places, and didn’t cut deep enough in others.  They were yummy for the family, but if I was doing them to impress others I would’ve gone through several more potatoes!



Vegetable Noodles – easy as can be.

15 Feb

Take one marrow, peel the skin and discard it.  While whatever sauce you are going to use cooks keep peeling and peeling.  Run the peeled ribbons under the hot tap, and there you have it.

I usually salt the water when I cook pasta, so I found these diluted the flavour of my sauce a little.  With a sprinkle of salt on them before topping with the sauce they would have been perfect.

(Editing to add this to Tasty Tuesday, check it out for loads of recipes.)

Avocado Dip

16 Nov

  • 1/2 onion
  • 1/2 tomato
  • a couple of inches of a cucumber

Chop everything finely.  With a fork mash in…

  • a large avocado
  • 2 Tb plain yoghurt (lemon juice adds tartness without dairy if that’s what you need)
  • salt to taste

Yum!  Serve it as a chip dip, or alongside wedges, or slap it on some bread, heck it’s good straight out of the bowl.  So I’ve been told, ahem.

Check out more delicious recipes at Tasty Tuesday!

Asparagus and Mushroom Cheese Sauce

1 Nov
I usually serve this over (gf) spaghetti, this amount is enough to feed us (minus BT2, who is dairy free) as a main dish, so that’s two adults and kids aged 9, 4, 2 & 1.
  • 2 Tb fat of some kind (oil, butter etc)
  • About 20 asparagus spears, cut about an inch long
  • 1 onion, chopped finely
  • 6 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 12 button mushrooms, cut in thick slices
  • 2 cups milk, plus a smidge more
  • 80g mozzarella, roughly cubed
  • 2 Tb cornflour (corn starch in US, the white stuff)
  • 100g feta

This can be made with any old cheese, but I had those two on hand so I used them.

  1. Cook the onion, garlic and asparagus in the fat, until tender.  (go easy on any salting because the cheese adds salt later.)
  2. Add the mushrooms, mozzarella and milk.
  3. While milk is warming up combine a little more milk with the cornflour.
  4. When the milk starts to simmer stir in the cornflour mix, keep stirring until it has thickened.
  5. Crumble in the feta before serving.

Pumpkin Soup

29 Oct

This one’s going to be tricky (to write, not to cook) because it’s one of those dishes that is always thrown together until it’s “right”.  Having grown up with pumpkin soup I know what “right” is, but I know there are regions where pumpkins are not considered people food, so I’ll attempt to turn it in to a recipe.

I’m guessing I had 1.5kg pumpkin.

Peel and cut the pumpkin and 3 onions, dump them in a pot.  Garlic always goes nicely with pumpkin too, but I had run out, I would add maybe eight cloves to this.  Cover with water.  Salt it. Boil it.  Simmer it.

When you get around to it, puree the cooked vegetables (in a processor, by mashing, or using a stick blender, or you could press it through a sieve but that would be tedious).  It will be looking something like this:

Stir a bit more water in (or cream adds a bit of decadence for dairy eaters) until it looks right. 😉  “Right” is still nice and thick, it’s not a watery soup, but it should be looking smooth.  A little something like this:

Check the salt, add nutmeg to taste.  I discovered my nutmeg was just about run out so I just dumped it in and grabbed the cinnamon…. only to discover it was just about run out so I dumped the whole lot in.  It looked like half a teaspoon of cinnamon, and a teaspoon of nutmeg.

Dairy Free Sauerkraut

28 Jan

Fermenting is often done with salt and whey, but if you drop the whey and add a bit more salt it becomes a great way to get probiotics in to people who can’t eat yoghurt.

Chop a cabbage, add 2 tablespoons of sea salt (don’t know if the “sea” part matters or not?), pound it for about ten minutes to bruise it.  Ideally grab a few nearby children, hand them a potato masher each, and get them to do most of the work. 🙂  When you put it in jars press it down firmly, this packs it in and makes the juices cover the leaves.  Leave at least an inch of air in the top of the jar.  Put the lids on, then forget it for three days and you’re done.  Store it somewhere cool and dark after the initial three days.

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