Monthly Archives: March 2014

Red Wine Lamb Shanks

Red Wine Lamb Shanks

Red Wine Lamb Shanks

These Red Wine Lamb Shanks are a popular recipe, I got this one from a newspaper lift out about 3 years ago. I have to give credit to Donna Hay for this one, and it is stunning. Just prepare two and a half hours before the tribe get home and pop it in the oven, do what you have to do, then it will be ready in time. This one serves 8, so if your tribe is not that big just halve everything, which is what I do.

Ingredients

8 lamb shanks
plain flour, for dusting
1/4 cup olive oil
1 brown onion, sliced
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 cup red wine
1 litre beef stock
1 cup water
2 sprigs rosemary
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon caster sugar
sea salt and cracked black pepper

Method

Preheat oven to 180°C. Dust the lamb with flour. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large frying pan over high heat. Cook the lamb, in batches, for 2-3 minutes on each side or until browned. Place in a baking dish. Add the remaining oil to the pan with the onion and garlic. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until browned. Add the wine and cook for 2 minutes or until reduced by half. Add the stock, water, rosemary, tomato paste, sugar, salt and pepper. Stir to combine and pour over the lamb. Cover with foil and cook in the oven for 2 hours. Remove foil and cook for a further 30 minutes.

Hints

Halve the ingredients for a smaller batch
Serve with mash potato and vegetables
Try cooking in a slow cooker

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Whole Egg Mayonnaise

I got this whole egg mayonnaise recipe off a website before Christmas because I wanted a real mayo to add to the Cocktail Sauce that I was making. I didn’t think that the condensed milk mayonnaise would go as well with the cocktail sauce, so I made this one, it didn’t take long and turned out fine. I just wish I could remember where I got it from so I could give credit, if I do end up finding the site I will add it here. I used a processor for this one as the oil needs to be added very slowly. I used a trick that I found on the same website, I put a hole into the bottom of a small plastic takeaway cup and squashed it into the feeding chute of the processor. I then poured the oil which was pre-measured into the cup whilst the processor was going. The oil streamed out of the bottom of the cup into the mixture. This worked a treat and like I said it turned out just fine.

Ingredients

1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 eggs (room temperature)
2 cups vegetable oil
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

Method

In a food processor add the eggs, mustard powder and salt
Blend until mixed
Pop a small takeaway cup in the feeding chute of the processor and pour the oil in whilst the processor is on medium
Pour in the vinegar then stop the processor when it is combined

Hints

Use a food processor with a large capacity jug as the 2 cups of oil are equal to 500ml and the volume will increase
Add lemon juice and or extra mustard powder to taste
You can do this recipe without a processor, just whisk the eggs first then keep whisking whilst adding streams of oil slowly
This recipe can also be done in a blender as well

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Irma’s Square Sponge Cake Recipe

Square Sponge Cake Recipe

Square Sponge Cake

In another post, I shared Irma’s Round Sponge Cake Recipe, so here we have it… The square version, please note that the ingredients are slightly different and that’s why I had to share two posts instead of one. I hope that you enjoy making and eating this one. I have said it before and I will say it again, there is nothing like a good old fashioned sponge cake recipe, enjoy!

Makes 2 x 8″ or 20 cm square cakes

Ingredients

5 eggs at room temperature
¾ cup caster sugar
1 cup corn flour
1 tablespoon custard powder
1 dessertspoon plain flour
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
½ teaspoon bicarbonate soda

Method

Preheat oven to 300°F (175°C)
Separate egg whites and whisk or beat until mixture holds peaks
Add caster sugar gradually and beat until the mixture is thick and creamy
Slowly add egg yolks to mixture one at a time until mixture is smooth and creamy
Sift all remaining dry ingredients together three times
Sift flour mixture gradually into egg mixture, carefully folding flour into mixture, do not beat
Divide mixture equally into 2 x greased and lined 8″ (20 cm) square sponge tins
Bump each tin firmly 3 times on the bench
Cook in preheated oven for 15 minutes or until cooked
Test each sponge with a skewer before removing from the oven
Do not open the oven un-necessarily
Allow to cool before turning out onto cooling rack or towel
Fill with whipped cream and dust top of sponge with soft icing sugar

Hints

Add your favorite jam to the middle and top with whipped cream
Try passion fruit pulp as a filling with cream
Ice the top of the sponge or add cream and strawberries
Mix passion fruit pulp with plain icing to spread onto the top of the sponge
Freeze the sponges when they cool, take out of the freezer a couple of hours before they are needed then fill and top as desired
Cut into smaller squares with an electric knife for individual serves

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Vegetable Soup

A Bowl of Vegetable Soup

Vegetable Soup

This vegetable soup recipe was given to me a couple of years ago by Nikki. I already have my tried and trusted chicken and vegetable soup recipe which I have made for years, however I thought that I would give this one a go. It is fairly simple and easy to make on one of those nights when you don’t want to go to too much trouble. You can make it up in the afternoon and put in on the heat when the family gets home. Or put it in the slow cooker on low and turn it on high when they get in the door.

Ingredients

4 sticks celery chopped
2 carrots grated
½ zucchini grated
¼ pumpkin grated
1 cup of soup mix (dried barley and lentil mix)
3 teaspoons chicken stock
1 lamb shank (or as many as you want)
celery salt to taste

Method

Put all of the ingredients in a large stock pot with water covering all of the ingredients on medium heat or
Put into a slow cooker with water almost to the top – put on low
Stir occasionally – top up water as required
Cook for an hour to get the flavors through or until the meat is falling from the bone
Turn up the heat before serving

Hints

Use left over vegetables from the refrigerator
Try a different combination on vegetables, beans, peas and potatoes for example
Try dicing the vegetables instead of grating
Roast some of the vegetables for half an hour before putting in the pot
Use the food processor for grating, makes the job easier
Works just as well with lamb chops or chicken drumsticks
Remove some of the liquid and serve as a meal with rice
Add some parsley or other herbs to taste
Try topping off your vegetable soup with some parmesan cheese

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Homemade Irish Cream

No! It’s not a cake recipe, I know. This is a handy recipe to have all the same though, you can mix up a batch in 10 minutes and store it in the refrigerator ready for entertaining, after dinner drinks and parties. Beautiful straight up with ice and great in coffee too. I have noticed that there are a few variations to this recipe, but since we have only ever made this one, it’s impossible to say which is the best. Looks like we will have to try some of them out. Life can be tough sometimes! We have also invented our own milkshake using Irish Cream as one of the ingredients, but we will keep that for another time. Have fun experimenting with this one.

Ingredients

1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 can carnation evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups whisky
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon glycerine
1 dessertspoon instant coffee dissolved in boiling water and cooled

Method

Mix all of the ingredients together and pour into a bottle

Hints

This homemade Irish Cream will last in the refrigerator for approximately 1 month
Serve straight up over ice or mix with milk and blend using a milk shake machine or stick blender
Experiment with the quantities of ingredients i.e. add or reduce whisky and condensed milk to alter the taste

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Irma’s Sponge Cake Recipe

Delicious Sponge Cake Recipe by Irma

Delicious Sponge Cake

This recipe was supplied by none other than Irma, I have had it for a few years and thought I had better share this with you. There are two versions, this recipe is the round version, the other recipe is for a square sponge. She has been making them for years and they taste great. There is nothing like a good old fashioned sponge cake recipe, give it a go yourself and see.

Makes 2 x 8ʺ or 20 cm Round Sponge Cakes

Ingredients

4 eggs (at room temperature)
¾ cup caster sugar
¾ cup corn flour
1 tablespoon custard powder
1 dessertspoon plain flour
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
½ teaspoon bicarbonate soda

Method

Preheat oven to 300°F (175°C)
Separate egg whites and whisk until mixture holds peaks
Add caster sugar gradually and beat until mixture is thick and creamy
Slowly add egg yolks to mixture one at a time until mixture is smooth and creamy
Sift all remaining dry ingredients together three times
Sift flour mixture gradually into egg mixture, carefully folding flour into the mixture, do not beat
Divide the mixture equally into 2 greased and lined 8ʺ or 20 cm sponge tins
Bump each dish firmly 3 times on the bench
Cook in preheated oven for 15 minutes or until cooked
Test each sponge with skewer before removing from the oven
Do not open the oven door un-necessarily
Allow to cool before turning out onto a cooling rack or towel
Fill with whipped cream and dust the top with soft icing sugar

Hints
Fill with your favorite jam or passion fruit pulp then add the cream
You can ice the top of the sponge instead of using sifted icing sugar
Try passion fruit pulp mixed with plain icing for something different
Sponges can be frozen after cooling, just take out of the freezer a few hours before required, fill and ice

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Honey Joys

Honey Joys

Honey Joys

I wish I could say these were named after me, but no they were not, it’s just a coincidence.  Anyway this recipe is years old and has been a favorite of small children everywhere. They often appear at markets and fates and the odd childrens parties.  Honey Joys remind me so much of children, and when they grow up it seems that the recipe is forgotten, never to be made again. So here it is one more time!

Ingredients

4 cups of cornflakes
⅓ cup of sugar
90 grams butter or margarine
1 tablespoon honey

Method

Preheat the oven to 150° C
In a large saucepan melt butter
Add sugar, honey and cornflakes heat until it froths
Fold in cornflakes and remove from the heat
Line a tray with baking paper
Set up rows of patty pans (makes 24)
Quickly fill each patty pan with a good scoop of the mixture
Put in a the oven heated at 150° C for 10 minutes
Remove from oven and let cool

Hints

Better eaten on the day
Can be kept in an air tight container
You can experiment with the large patty pans
Great for lunch boxes
Honey Joys are great for kids’ parties and as snack

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Sponge Kisses

Sponge Kiss

Sponge Kiss

This is a stunning recipe, you will adore these kisses, they may take some practice to perfect but they are well worth it. I look forward to making these again soon and will post the photo when I do. Meanwhile here is a photo I lifted from the net just to show you the finished product.

Ingredients

3 oz. plain flour
1 oz. corn flour
1 rounded teaspoon baking powder
4 oz. sugar
3 eggs
½ teaspoon vanilla essence
pinch salt

Method

Separate the egg yolks from the whites
Beat the whites until stiff peaks form and add salt
Add sugar slowly a bit at a time
Sift flour, corn flour, and baking powder together and fold into the egg white mix
Line a tray with non stick baking paper
Put a teaspoon of the mix on the tray so that it forms a small circle
Leave room between the kisses so they can expand
Cook 12-15 minutes in the oven on top shelf at 350-375°F
Cool on a wire rack
When cooled sandwich together with cream and jam, dust the tops with icing sugar

Hints

Check out the conversion chart that we have on this site to convert measurements
The correct oven calibration is important for this recipe, check your oven temperature
Sponge Kisses should be golden not brown
Can be frozen, then thawed out and put together with jam and cream
Use left over egg yolks to make a lemon curd and use it as a filling for the kisses

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Carmels’ Pavlova

Pavlova with Strawberries

Pavlova with Strawberry Topping

This dessert recipe is an old favorite, over 50 years old to be exact. The great thing is that it can be made the day before and also you can use a variety of toppings. I am sure that you will enjoy this one.

Ingredients

4 egg whites
pinch of salt
pinch of cream of tartar
1½ cups caster sugar
1 tablespoon sifted corn flour
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 teaspoon white vinegar

Method

Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks occur, at least 10 minutes
then add the caster sugar very slowly
Add the remaining ingredients (cream of tartar, corn flour, vanilla, salt and vinegar)
Set up a baking tray, lined with baking paper
Spoon out the mixture into a circle, keeping the mixture piled high
Bake at 150 C ½ hour then
Bake at 140 C 1 hour
Turn off the oven after cooking and leave the oven door slightly ajar for the pavlova crust to cool
Remove from the oven and turn the crust over carefully and place on a plate

Topping

Whip 600 ml. thickened cream until peaks form
Fill the top of the crust with the whipped cream
Arrange the fruit of your choice on top

Hints

Cooking times will vary if your oven is running either too hot or too cool
Common problems are excessive browning on the outside of the crust
Test the oven with an oven thermometer if you suspect that your oven is not cooking at the right temperature
Put some extra cream in a piping bag and use for decorating the top
Fruit can also be substituted with crumbled chocolate bars or shaved chocolate

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Lasagna

Lasagna

Lasagna

I have been making this recipe for over 40 years and it is still the family favorite. I must admit that I do change things around slightly, introducing different ingredients every now and then. This is one of those recipes though, that you will keep making for years and why not, it tastes great!

Ingredients

Meat Sauce

500 grams minced steak
1 onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 tablespoon of tomato paste
¼ teaspoon rosemary and parsley
½ cup red wine
salt and pepper

Bechamel Sauce

600 ml milk
1 tablespoon corn flour
1 tablespoon butter
pinch of salt
1 bay leaf

Method

Pasta

Boil 10 sheets of pasta for 12 minutes and drain or use the precooked Lasagna sheets

Meat Sauce

Fry onion and garlic in butter until tender, add meat and remaining ingredients. Cook until brown stirring occasionally

Bechamel Sauce

Reserve a small amount of milk and stir in the cornflour. Pour the remaining milk into a saucepan with the butter and bay leaf and heat to nearly boiling point. Pour the corn flour and milk mix into the saucepan and boil until it thickens. Season to taste with salt and pepper

Arrange in order, pasta, meat sauce and bechamel sauce in a rectangle dish. Repeat the layers until all of the ingredients are used. Top the final layer with grated cheese and put into the oven at 180° C for 20 minutes or until the top is browned and the Lasagna is hot.

Hints

This recipe will serve 4 people
Try adding different vegetables to the meat sauce
Great for children who are fussy with vegetables
Can be frozen in containers, great for last minute meals
Great for lunch boxes
Can be re-heated the next day in the oven or microwave oven
Experiment with different varieties of cheese or try adding cheese between the layers
If using the precooked Lasagna sheets, read the instructions as the cooking times may vary

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