Month: October 2014

Cooking with Cauliflower

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Olivia and Zoe love eating roasts as long as cauliflower with cheese sauce makes an appearance ! I do love the taste of steamed cauliflower with a creamy cheese sauce drizzled over the top and finished off in a hot oven to brown and crisp.

Sometimes we get stuck cooking vegetables in the same way ,only steaming them when often there are other methods of cooking the same vegetable which can result in other delicious dishes.

Cutting the cauliflower into florets and then into very fine “rice” has become a popular form of fried rice as an alternative to cooking rice. It is simply fried along with other vegetables and even adding in some chopped bacon or small prawns can add in some protein.

Roasting vegetables such as cauliflower adds a nutty flavour and allows maintaining a crisp texture and colour . I like adding a handful of toasted nuts, chopped herbs such as parsley, coriander, some dried fruits such as currents, all tossed together with a light dressing make for a fabulous salad.

Why not make a raw salad ,cut and mix raw cauliflower for a very crunchy salad. Children always love raw vegetables and young fresh vegetables are very tasty . Why not give it a go ?

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Great Vegetables

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This week I am starting to write a series of articles about the humble vegetable. It all started when I organised a visit to a small Asian market called little Saigon, located in Footscray . It sells an amazing array of fresh fruit and vegetables along with meat and fish and all things Asian.

I met up with Carey and Graeme and Leslie to take a closer look at the Asian leafy greens that can be so mystifying . I realised whilst we were looking at the vegetable section that there are other vegetables that are also not commonly used.

I want to look at first the ¬†Celeriac , it’s a weird knobbly looking tuber like vegetable that can be used instead of the humble potato. It is a winter vegetable so not readily found in the warmer months.

It can be just as delicious cold as well as cooked. Remember once peeled of its skin it will discolour so keep in water with slices on lemon to help prevent discolouration .

My tips for using celeriac are

1.peel and cut into large dice and steam , turn steamed celeriac into purée it is truly delicious especially with beef
2 cut into large pieces for roasting – it makes for a different alternative along with your other roast vegetables.
3 cut into julienne and mix with a nice mayonnaise and a good squeeze of lemon juice for a coleslaw alternative . It is delicious served with a piece of fish such as salmon

4. celeriac soup is also quite delicious – try mixing some pear in for a touch of sweetness

Scrumptious Chocolate Cake

What was the one experience that completely changed your life? What happened? How did it change your life?

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Who does not love a great Chocolate cake. There are so many kinds – the delightful; chocolate brownie, the fudge chocolate cake, the mouse style chocolate cake and so on !!

In our workplace we generally make the cake for our fellow coworkers. I think the most popular choice is chocolate – there is something very satisfying about a good one.

One of our favourites is the Bourke Street Bakery Chocolate cake pictured above with chocolate chards and fresh raspberries.Here is a link for the recipe care of another blogger.

http://http://www.kararosenlund.com/tag/bourke-street-bakery/

My Tips for making a great chocolate cake

1. Use good chocolate – most baking chocolate sold in supermarkets are made from animal fat and do not taste very nice. Use real chocolate – look for a cocoa content of 70%

2. Bring all your ingredients to room temperature – eggs and butter.

3. Older eggs will give better volume.

4. Be careful of your oven temperature and using a conventional oven will give this very rich cake a better baking result.

5. Dont be frightened of checking the cake throughout the cooking time.

6. Be careful not to un mould too early and ensure the tin in greased and the base covered in baking paper.

Cooking With Nuts

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Nuts are simply delicious and a fabulous source of Protein. They contain the healthy form of fats that we require to maintain a healthy diet.

I particularly love almonds and hazel nuts ,eating them on their own or ground to replace flour in baked goods, such as cakes.

Unfortunately we buy nuts from the supermarket ,open them and then leave them in the pantry to simply go off. If you eat a nut and think yuck it is probably simply too old and has gone rancid.

My TIP

1. Keep nuts refrigerated or even in the freezer

2 Try to buy form a supplier of nuts

3 Always roast before use – leave in a cool to moderate oven for around 20 minutes

4 Store in an airtight container

Check out this excellent Guardian website for different recipes

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/apr/13/10-best-nuts-recipes