Monday, December 9, 2013

Bounce Back Brown Rice Salad

2 cups brown rice
4 cups water
tbs chicken stock
saffron threads
1 brown onion, finely chopped
dutch carrots thinly sliced
mint thinly sliced
toasted slivered almonds
1/3 cup currants

Cook brown onion at a low heat with a dash of oil until soft and sweet. Then simply cook rice - absorption method - eg. 2 cups rice and 4 cups water in a pot with lid on until all water is gone. When finished allow to cool and stir through mint, currants, carrots, onion, and almonds. Now enjoy!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Conversations with two and a half year olds.

Me: 'Georgie, Porgie, pudding and pie. Kissed the girls and made them cry. When the boys came out to play. Georgie Porgie ran away'.

Tom: 'Why they cry mumma?'

Me: 'Who, the girls?'

Tom: 'Yes, mumma.'

Me: 'They didn't want to be kissed by Georgie Porgie, mate.'

Tom: 'Oh.'

momentary silence.

Tom: 'Mumma?'

Me: 'Yes, Tom.'

Tom: 'Is it still oday for me to kiss you?'

Pumpkin & Chickpea Salad with Sunflower Seed Dressing

This recipe is easy, peasy. I made it one night after work and it took all of 20 minutes tops.

You'll need for the salad:

1/4 Pumpkin, cut in to cubes
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
dash of olive oil
half a red onion
1 can of chickpeas (I use dried and leave soaking for the day)

You'll need for the dressing:

1 tbsp honey
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 sunflower seeds
2 tbsp warm water
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
dash of salt and pepper
coriander, finely chopped

Get to work:

Toss pumpkin cubes in olive oil, cumin and coriander. Roast until soft. Add the red onions about half way through. Once cooked, put pumpkin & red onon in the a serving bowl with chickpeas and finely chopped coriander. To make the dressing, simply put honey, lemon juice, water, olive oil, seeds, salt, pepper, and a large pinch of fined chopped coriander in a blender and whizz. Add more water if its not runny enough. Toss a little bit of dressing through salad with fresh coriander and serve.

** I added currants for a sweet hit. Yum!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Introducing Empress Avenue

I am so pleased to announce, finally, on this here blog my latest sewing venture 'Empress Avenue'. I've always loved sewing, and have lusted after many vintage patterns, clothes and fabrics. Empress Avenue is a culmination of those loves. Vintage inspired dresses, hand made to regular sizes or custom fits.

The facebook page is building momentum and I have a few marketing plans in the wings ready to be implemented once I have all my ducks in a row.

So please, dear reader, become a friend of Empress Avenue on Facebook today, and get regular updates about whats happening.

Or for visual stimulation follow me on Instagram @embrock

Pease also visit the Etsy page for ready made dresses or head to the website to look through fabrics for  custom orders. I'm ready and waiting to make your sundress dreams come true.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Japanese Vegetarian Pancakes

New recipe. Totally needed to share. It was easy, delicious and above all, a little fancy!

Here's the loot you'll need, most of which you'll already have in the cupboard.

3 carrots, shredded with veggie peeler
Half a small cabbage, shredded
3 spring onions, sliced thinly on an angle people
5 kale leaves, stalks removed.
1/2 cup flour
6-7 eggs.
Toasted sesame seeds & spring onion shreds for sprinkling
Japanese mayo - coles has it (and it's worth the $3.50)

1/4 cup tomato sauce
1 1/2 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
1/4 tsp rice wine or sake
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tbsp honey
1/4 tsp dijon mustard
1/8 tsp ground ginger (I used 1 crushed garlic clove instead)

To make the pancakes
Mix all your veg in a bowl and toss through the flour to coat. Add 6 - 7 eggs so that all veg is covered with egg.

Heat canola oil in a pan. Add heaped spoonfuls (i used tongs) to make big pancakes. Press them lightly with the spatula. Fry until they are solid and crisp underneath. I used the 'two-plate' method to flip. Use spatula to remove from pan, place on plate, cover with another plate, flip both over at the same time and then put the pancake back on the pan to cook the uncooked side. Make sense? They can be put into an oven on low heat to remain warm.

To make the sauce
Mix all those ingredients together in a pot, heat for 3-5 minutes and leave to cool. Frickin' awesome!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Going Organic

I'm a big believer that small changes can make a big difference. Too often we believe that the problems of the world are out of our hands. That the money man will always win. Well, yes, he will if you sit on your hands.

I've had a bee in my bonnet for the past few years about two Australian supermarkets who I feel not only dominate and destroy the market, but who also have a largely negative impact on farmers, brands and consumers a like.

I have ventured to find alternatives, enjoying for awhile the likes of Aussie Farmers Direct and LaManna Direct, but my all time favourite find to date, both for their produce and their philosophy, is Whole Larder Love.

Now, every second Wednesday I place my order for a box of organic fruit and vege. On Friday a farmer plucks my produce from the ground, and on Saturday the lovely Rohan, often accompanied by his delightful family members, delivers the box to one of three locations around Melbourne - the drop off point.

We venture down, meet the people behind the produce, and collect our goods. I take them all home, wash off that gorgeous organic soil and stock my fridge as ideas for meals dance like sugar plums in my head.

Here are some of the delights we found in our box - total cost $48.

6 corn
5 beetroot
30 apples
16 carrots
head of broccoli
4 turnips
4 big potatoes
3 onions
1 red onion
1 head of red cabbage
2 parsnip
1 leek
2 tomatoes

Even though we didn't get much fruit, I wasn't bothered. The kids loved the apples and ate every last one. And besides, I like the idea of moving to be more seasonal. These are but small steps I am taking, perhaps towards even growing my own.

We all know money has power. How are you using yours?

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Bloody Good Beetroot Salad

If, like me, you enjoy a little pinot now and then, perhaps balance it out with a little more beetroot in your diet. It helps to cleanse the liver, so you can ruin it again sooner :)

No, seriously, I am taking a much healthier approach to eating lately. Even ordered some organic fruit and vege to be delivered right near our house this Saturday. Apparently the vege is pulled from the ground on Friday and in your hands by Saturday lunch time. Coles and Safeway can NOT beat that people!

One of the yummiest recipes that I have uncovered it this delicious (and super quick and super easy) Beetroot Salad. Try it. Your liver will love you for it.

This is leftover beetroot salad added to my veggie tacos.

Bloody Good Beetroot Salad

1 beetroot
1 large carrots
1/2 red onion
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
tablespoon of red wine vinegar
1/2 cup of good olive oil
1/4 cup petita seeds
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup sliced almonds

Toast all your seeds and nuts on a pan then put aside. Grate beetroot and carrot into a bowl. Thinely slice red onion and add to beet/carrot mix. In a bowl add finely chopped garlic, olive oil and red wine vinegar. Mix.

When you're ready to serve, add seed and nut mix to the beet, carrot and onion and then toss through your red wine dressing. This will give four adults a good dose of healthy yumminess.