Month: August 2013

Burger Kings

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It was time for a quick sunday night burger after flying back from a weekend in sunny Sydney . It is such a beautiful city  to be a tourist, I had a wonderful time eating and seeing great friends Trish,  Gayle  ,Mark and Andrea.

I really do love a great burger and Steve, Olivia and myself headed to our local burger joint . Its a delicious quick meal – a nice sweet meat patty, a soft flavoursome bun, fresh salad ingredients and most importantly some caramelised onion. 

Why then do so many cafes and restaurant’s get it so wrong? – sometimes they are dry and lacking with flavour. My girls love to eat at Grilled and their burgers are extremely good.

What makes a great Ham Burger ??

1. Good bread – sourdough, or even good turkish bread . The bread needs to be slightly soft, chewy with great flavour but not too toasted that it is crusty

2. A great meat patty – I love making minced chicken patty – a mixture of thigh and breast for flavour and  lots of fresh herbs.

3. Flavour, Flavour with a good chutney, great mayonnaise,great tasting tomato sauce. 

4. Fresh lettuce, maybe herbs, fresh salad ingredients.

5. Caramelised onion or onion jam

 

Here is a recipe for Onion Jam.

http://www.taste.com.au/recipes/25885/caramelised+onion+jam

 

 

 

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Pumpkin and Prune Cake

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Last Week I caught up with the girls from Book Group. We meet up once a month to talk about the book we have all hopefully read ! We have a an hour of discussion followed by  a catch up with each others news and then a cup of tea followed by a piece of cake.

Leita was our host for August and she served a delicious Pumpkin and Prune cake. This odd combination works because they are subtle in flavour, but hold moisture so that the cake stays even more moist and delicious. Cakes that are dry and tough are what we  really do not want !! Other cakes that include vegetables are the chocolate and beetroot combination or the red velvet cake which can also include beetroot and raspberry.

I include a link for this woman’s weekly recipe .http://kitchenlaw.blogspot.com.au/2013/08/pumpkin-pineapple-and-prune-cake.html Their recipes are usually more successful because they have been tested before put into print. This eliminates things that can go wrong.

Tips for great cake making

1.When creaming butter and sugar – make sure the butter is at room temperature.

Making Biscuits

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I work with a great bunch of girls who love to cook and often bring in delicious treats to share. Despina makes delightful Greek treats and has a great talent for making biscuits.

Its great to share a cup of coffee and a biscuit which is often just that sweet treat we look for at morning or afternoon tea.They come in many shapes and sizes and can be many flavours – lemon, chocolate, ginger etc.We serve them on their own or wedge them with icing sugar or chocolate or butter cream.

Think of our national treasures like Anzac and Melting Moments – Yum !

Like all baking, there are cooking tips to give you better results.

my tips for great biscuits are

1. Weigh your mixture carefully

2. Stick to recipes that you know work

3. Rest the mixture after you had made it in the refrigerator, rest after you roll your biscuit mixture, again in the refrigerator.

4. Roll your mixture or make one roll ,wrap in glad wrap and cut pieces with a knife.

5. When you place them on a baking tray put them in the refrigerator again and leave for at least 30 minutes.

6. Take them from the refrigerator and bake in a moderate oven

7. Dont be in a hurry to take the baked biscuits of the baking tray.

8. Many mixtures can be kept in a freezer in a formed roll

Try this recipe for cranberry and pistachio biscuit

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/1759655/pistachio-and-cranberry-cookies

Cup Cake Day

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Yesterday at work we had a fundraising cup cake making day.Everyone made different cup cakes and we sold them to each other. My children were very happy with the mini baked morsels I brought home!!

Cup cakes or muffins are simply smaller versions of a larger cake, but I do love to eat them. Tina made a delicious version of beetroot and raspberry and Amanda made lemon friands – another mini cake that is mostly made from eggwhites and ground almonds.

My contribution was Roasted strawberry friands. It is a process of roasting strawberries with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and a small amount of icing sugar . The cut berries are placed in a moderate oven for around 15 minutes.

Cupcakes or little cakes can some times be dry and not so tasty.

Here are my tips for successful baking.

1. Smaller cakes require a slightly hotter oven than a larger cake – be careful to check that they are cooked before the allocated time as they can often be overcooked.

2. Spray the paper case before you add the mixture – this allows for more enjoyable eating – rather than leaving half the mixture behind.

3. Mix the flour in lightly – try to resist using a machine to do this – it is very easy to overmix and this makes the cake tough.

4. Look for flour for cakes – it will have less gluten.

5. If adding berries – resist adding until just before they enter the oven.

6. Warm the butter first before beating in sugar

Here is a link to my recipe developed at work

http://www.alacarte.miele.com.au/au/alacarte/food/food_roasted_strawberry_friands_new_aus.aspx?incHit=1

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