Sunday, April 29, 2012

Lamb Shanks in Cranberry Sauce

Recipe adapted from Super Food Ideas Magazine, July 2003 issue, page 49


1 tablespoon olive oil
6 lamb shanks, French trimmed
20g butter
1 small red onion, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons plain flour
1½ cups beef stock
1 cup red wine
275g jar whole berry cranberry sauce
¼ cup fresh rosemary sprigs
mashed potato, to serve
steamed green beans, to serve

  1. Preheat oven to 160°C. Heat oil in a large, heavy-based, fry pan over high heat. Cook shanks for 5 minutes on each side or until brown on all sides. Remove to a large casserole dish and arrange the rosemary sprigs around the lamb shanks.
  2. Reduce heat to medium then add butter, onion and garlic to fry pan. Cook for a minute or so then add flour and cook for another minute. Slowly add wine, stock and cranberry sauce then bring to the boil. Pour sauce over lamb. 
  3. Cover dish with foil, transfer to oven and bake for 3 hours. Remove foil, reduce oven temperature to 120°C and bake for a further 30 minutes or until shanks are tender. 
  4. Remove all the lamb shanks to a plate then pour the sauce from the casserole dish into a pot and heat over high heat for 5 minutes to thicken the sauce.
  5. Serve lamb shanks with cranberry sauce, mashed potato and beans.
Notes & Tips

If you have a slow cooker, cook on high for 3.5 hours

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Citrus Semolina Syrup Cake

 Recipe from Super Food Ideas magazine, November 2003 issue, page 50


2 oranges 

3 lemons

250g unsalted butter, softened

2¼ cups caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
5 eggs
2 cups semolina
2 teaspoons baking powder
200g ground almonds
¼ cup orange juice or Grand Marnier (see note)

  1. Preheat oven to 170°C. Grease a 2 litre-capacity, 26cm (top) gugelhopf (ring) pan.
  2. Finely grate rind of 1 orange and 2 lemons. Using an electric mixer, beat butter, 1¼ cups of sugar, rinds and vanilla together until light and creamy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add semolina, baking powder and almonds. Mix gently to combine.
  3. Spoon mixture into prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  4. Shred rind from remaining orange and lemon. Juice fruit. Combine juice, remaining sugar and Grand Marnier or orange juice in a saucepan over low heat. Cook, stirring, until syrup comes to the boil. Reduce heat. Simmer for 10 minutes or until reduced by half.
  5. Using a skewer, pierce holes in surface of warm cake. Pour three-quarters of syrup over cake. Add shredded rind to remaining syrup. Stand cake in pan for 15 minutes before turning onto a plate. Spoon over remaining syrup, serve the cake in slices with a dollop of crème fraiche.
Notes & Tips

Semolina is coarsely ground durum wheat. You'll find it in the health food section of your supermarket.

Grand Marnier is an orange-flavoured liqueur. Substitute with orange juice for a non alcoholic version

Choc Chip Banana Muffins

Recipe from Fresh Living Magazine, September 2004 issue, page 7

Makes 12


60g unsalted butter
2 cups self-raising flour
½ cup caster sugar
½ cup milk
2 eggs, room temperature
2 ripe bananas, mashed (approx. 1½ cups)
1 cup dark chocolate chips

  1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Line a medium muffin tray (12 sections) with paper cases. Melt butter in a small saucepan or heat-proof bowl in the microwave. Set aside to cool slightly.
  2. Sift flour into a mixing bowl. Stir in sugar. Make a well in the centre of dry ingredients. 
  3. Using a whisk, lightly beat milk, eggs and butter in a jug. Add to dry ingredients, along with mashed banana. Using a wooden spoon, gently mix ingredients until just combined. Stir in chocolate chips. Don't beat the mixture or the muffins will be tough. 
  4. Spoon the mixture evenly into the muffin cases. Bake for 20 minutes or until firm on top when lightly touched. Leave in the tray for 5 minutes. Transfer the muffins to a rack to cool.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Chicken and Zucchni Stir Fry


450g chicken thigh fillets, cut into strips
2 tablespoons corn flour
2 tablespoons oil
2 small zucchini, cut in half and thinly sliced (unpeeled)
1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger
50ml white wine
1-2 teaspoons chicken stock powder
1 teaspoon sesame oil

  1. Coat the chicken strips with cornflour. Heat up the oil in a wok over high heat and fry half the chicken strips. Once the meat starts turning golden in colour, remove from the work and set aside covered. Repeat with remaining chicken.
  2. In the same oil, cook the zucchini briefly.
  3. Add chicken and ginger to the zucchini. Cover with wine and stir through.
  4. Sprinkle chicken stock powder and cook for a few minutes. Just before serving drizzle with sesame oil. Serve with steamed rice.
Notes & Tips

An easy way to cut chicken strips thinly is to freeze the meat lightly and cut. Then ensure it is completely thawed out prior to cooking.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Panfried Salmon on Garlic Mash and Green Beans

Salmon is considered to be one of nature's superfoods as it is a rich source of omega 3 fatty acids. Just two serves per week provides the recommended intake of omega 3 which research has shown is beneficial for heart health and a range of diseases & conditions.


¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
grated rind and juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon baby capers
1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
¼ cup olive oil

4 salmon fillets
250g steamed green beans
extra virgin olive oil, for dressing
Garlic Mash, for serving

Combine extra virgin olive oil together with lemon rind, juice, capers and season to taste. Season salmon fillets and pan fry in hot olive oil for 2 minutes on each side until golden on the outside but still slightly pink in the centre. Dress beans with extra virgin olive oil and season. Serve salmon on garlic mash drizzled with caper and lemon oil and accompanied with beans.

Garlic Mash

800g potatoes
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1 cup hot milk
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Peel potatoes and cut into large chunks. Place potatoes and garlic cloves in a large saucepan and cover with cold salty water. Bring to the boil over medium-high heat. Cook potatoes for 20 minutes or until very tender but not falling apart. Drain and mash potatoes and garlic together with milk until smooth. Season to taste.
Notes & Tips
To heat milk, pour into a microwave-safe jug or cup. Heat, uncovered, for 1 to 2 minutes on HIGH (100%) power or until hot. Using milk instead of butter and cream makes this a healthier potato mash.
For really smooth potato mash, use an electric mixer to mix for a minute and then pass mash through a drum sieve, gently pushing with the back of a wooden spoon.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Choc Orange Cupcakes

Recipe from White Wings

Makes 15 cupcakes


370g White Wings Moist Chocolate Cake mix
2 eggs (59g each), at room temperature
1 orange
½ teaspoon orange essence (optional)
60ml (¼ cup) vegetable oil
choc orange balls

Chocolate Frosting

1½ cups icing sugar
¼ cup cocoa powder
125g soft butter
2 tbsp milk

  1. Preheat oven to 160°C conventional or 140°C fan-forced. Grease and line muffin/cupcake pans.
  2. Finely grate the rind of 1 orange (approx. 2 teaspoons) then juice orange into a measuring cup.
  3. Add water to the orange juice to make up to 250ml (1 cup) of liquid in total.
  4. Place cake mix, eggs, orange zest, orange juice mix, orange essence and vegetable oil into a medium mixing bowl. Using an electric mixer beat on low speed for 30 seconds to combine. Increase speed to medium and mix for 3 minutes, scraping down sides of bowl occasionally. Spoon approx 2 tablespoons of cake mixture into cupcake cases and bake for 30 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, make chocolate frosting by using an electric mixer on low speed to beat together soft butter, milk, sifted icing sugar and sifted cocoa powder until well combined.
  6. Increase speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy, adding a few drops of milk if required.
  7. When cupcakes are cool, ice each one with chocolate icing and decorate each cupcake with a choc orange ball. 
Notes & Tips

To retain freshness, store cupcakes in an airtight container. 

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Coconut Jelly


  • 400ml can light coconut milk
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 tablespoon gelatine
  • ½ cup caster sugar


Heat coconut milk in a saucepan over medium heat for 6 minutes or until hot (do not boil). 

Add gelatine to hot water. Stir with a fork until gelatine has dissolved.

Pour gelatine into warm coconut milk. Add sugar. Heat, stirring, for 3 minutes or until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat. Set aside to cool.

Pour jelly into five ½-cup capacity jelly moulds. Refrigerate for 4 hours or until set. Invert onto serving plate. Serve cold.

Alternatively, pour jelly into a rectangular container. Refrigerate until set. Cut jelly into cubes. Serve cold.

Monday, April 2, 2012

T-Bone Steak with mushroom sauce and vegetables


½ cup frozen sliced carrots
¼ cup frozen peas or beans
½ teaspoon garlic salt
2 tablespoon chives, finely chopped
1 bag oven fries
4 (about 350g each) beef T-bone steaks
1 tablespoon oil

Mushroom sauce

200g mushrooms, sliced
1 small onion, finely chopped
½ cup red wine
½ cup beef stock
¼ cup cream


Preheat oven to 200°C. Place oven fries onto a baking tray. Cook, following packet directions, until golden and tender.

Place frozen vegetables in a shallow microwavesafe dish. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon water, 1 tablespoon butter and some garlic salt. Cover with a lid or plastic wrap. Microwave on HIGH (100%) power for 3 minutes or until just tender. Cover and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a small, non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. Brush steaks with oil. Season with salt and pepper. Cook steaks for 4 to 5 minutes each side for medium rare or until cooked to your liking. Transfer to a plate. Cover with foil. Set aside for 5 minutes to rest.

Add onions and mushrooms to frying pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium-high heat for 4 to 5 minutes or until golden and all moisture has evaporated.

Add wine. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low. Simmer for 2 to 3 minutes or until liquid has evaporated. Add stock and cream. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium. Simmer for 3 to 5 minutes or until reduced by half. 

Place steaks on plates. Spoon over mushrooms sauce and sprinkle with chives. Serve with vegetables and fries

Notes & Tips

You can substitute the potato fries with potato mash for a healthier version
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