Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Excellent Online Grocery Store

 As most followers of my blog would know, I like to try and shop locally. However, there is a limit to what my local storekeeper can provide, so I do shop elsewhere when necessary.

This online store was recommended to me by my Thermomix consultant. It's exceptional because they only charge a flat $5.00 fee for postage.
I ordered 10kg of goods recently, so to receive a package from Perth for only $5.00 is incredible. are just brilliant. The various things I bought included some fresh almonds, some yummy Sour Cream and Chives Soy Crisps, delicious Roasted, Salted Edamame, Peaz Wheelz and Rice Crackers. I also bought some flax seed and buckwheat for bread.

Everything was packed beautifully and arrived here very quickly. I can't recommend them highly enough.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Brown Butter Shortbread

I adore shortbread, but have never been successful in making it myself. It's usually too crumbly or too soft and just doesn't taste right.
Since Christmas is nearly upon us, I thought I'd try again. I've been inspired by a cookery programme I saw recently where a Scottish woman showed Rick Stein how she made shortbread. She didn't give the recipe, but she showed her method. The unusual part was that she didn't mix the ingredients until she got a dough. She simply put the processed ingredients into a dish and pressed it all in.

I used the recipe from the Anchor Ground Rice packet as there was still some in the pack. I must have bought it a while ago because I can simply make my own ground rice in the Thermomix these days.

As I was busy this morning, I forgot about the shortbread cooking away and it went quite golden in colour. This resulted in a delicious brown butter flavour as the butter hadn't quite incorporated in parts. So, I've renamed this recipe, Brown Butter Shortbread. I thought afterwards that I should have removed some of the sugar and sprinkled it on top, so have added that tweak to the recipe.

Brown Butter Shortbread
90g rice (ground rice if you don't have a Thermomix)
80g castor sugar
210g plain flour
180g cold diced butter
1 Tbsp castor sugar extra

Preheat oven to 170C. Grease and line a slice tin - place lining in so it comes up at the sides for ease of removal.
Blitz rice on speed 9 for a minute or so. If using regular or raw sugar, you can add it after 30 seconds to make castor sugar.
Place all ingredients into the Thermomix or food processor and blend on speed 6 until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs.
Press into slice tin and bake for about 7 minutes. Remove from oven and score into pieces. Sprinkle extra castor over the top and bake until golden.
Let cool in tin for 10 minutes or so. Lift out and cut into pieces along score lines.

Next time, I'll sub out about 30g of the flour for some almond meal.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Pumpkin & Spinach Salad

This delicious salad is a combination of two or three and was inspired by two friends Julie & Robyn who both make delicious salads.

Pumpkin & Spinach Salad
1 small butternut pumpkin, peeled and diced to thumbnail size
2 rashers of bacon, cut into small strips and sautéed until crisp
2 spring onions, sliced into rings
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds, lightly toasted
1/4 cup pistachios, lightly toasted
1 packet baby spinach leaves

40ml light olive oil
20ml soy sauce
20ml lemon juice
1 clove garlic - crushed
2 Tbsp brown sugar

Steam or microwave the pumpkin until tender, not mushy. Cool to room temperature.
Mix dressing ingredients together in a jar.
Lay spinach leaves on a large shallow platter and arrange salad ingredients on top. When ready to serve, top with the dressing. Serve at room temperature.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Polish Coleslaw

This is a delicious version of a coleslaw. It's an all in one Thermomix recipe which, at a pinch, may be able to be made in a food processor.

The recipe was posted by JudyDawn on the Thermomix Forum and it originally came from a Thermomix Polish Cooking Class in Adelaide. Thanks Judy!!

I've renamed it, because it really is a coleslaw. I also added lemon rind as I love the flavour.

Polish Coleslaw (normally called Raw Vegetable Salad)

1/2 cabbage (around 250g), chopped into chunks
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped into chunks
50g dill cucumbers (I used cornichons, the baby dill cucumbers), chopped finely
1/2 green apple, core removed, chopped into chunks
1/2 red onion (I used brown), chopped into chunks
small bunch parsley
juice and rind of half a lemon
1 tsp sugar
salt & pepper to taste
3 Tbsp light olive oil

Place all ingredients (except cornichons) in the Thermomix bowl and process on speed 4 for 8 seconds, using spatula to assist with incorporation if necessary.
 I processed for a further 6 seconds on speed 4 to get the right consistency. Best to do short bursts and check constantly.