Showing posts with label pumpkin. Show all posts
Showing posts with label pumpkin. Show all posts

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Pumpkin and Spinach layered pie

This meal was so simple and delicious I decided everyone should learn how it was made so that you can enjoy it for yourselves.
* Prepare a round cake tin by placing a piece of baking paper in the bottom and heating your oven to 180°.
* Thinly slice about a quarter of a pumpkin.
* Shred finely about 6 spinach leaves or you could use baby spinach leaves if you prefer.
* Grate a couple of cups of tasty cheese.
* Slice very thinly about a half a red onion.
* Whisk together 4 to 6 eggs with a couple of spoons of natural yoghurt or sour cream.
From here it's as simple as layering everything into the cake tin starting and finishing with pumpkin ... finally pour in the egg mixture and sprinkle a little cheese on top. Bake until pumpkin is soft and cooked right through and a gorgeous golden brown on top.
This pie is also very nice eaten the next day and equally delicious served cold in the lunch box.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Vegetable Soup with Country Vegetable Soup Mix

Vegetable Soup
Purchase a packet of McKenzie's Country Vegetable Soup which contains a mix of yellow and green split peas, red lentils, barley and Haricot beans and spices mix from your supermarket (or you can make your own little mix of goodies about 200grams in total)... here are three versions below of using the one soup mix that are all simple and nourishing...

  1. It can be made up following the instructions on the pack and served as they are... in about 60 minutes.  
  2. The same pack can be made into a vegetable soup by adding diced veggies and cooking it in a slow cooker on low over the day 7-8 hours if you want to have a go at that method.
  3. Or by using the same packet blend of whole grains and adding fresh vegetables along with some browned chicken to end up with a "Chicken and Vegetable Soup".
Today I've used the packet of McKenzie's Country Vegetable soup mix and I have combined it with fresh diced vegetables and cooked it on the stove top as follows ...
Fresh diced vegetables of your choice

  • In a little olive oil soften an onion, half dozen sliced spring onions, a couple of stalks of celery and a couple cloves of crushed garlic until translucent.
  • Then add diced carrots, pumpkin, mushrooms and zucchini until they start to soften.
  • Finally add a tin of tomatoes, 1/2 cup of tomato puree, fresh herbs of thyme and parsley, the soup and spice mix and 2 litres of water... cover and simmer for about and hour until the barley is tender... Enjoy!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Mixed Roast Veggies, Greens and Gravy

Mixed Roast Veggies, Greens and Gravy
Don't be frightened to be a little unconventional with this dish... I slow roast anything and everything. You most likely think anyone can roast veggies however this is my cook book, to be a reference that my children can use when I don't answer the phone... here goes... my version of the best roast spuds. 
  • I like to partly boil my quartered beetroot for two reasons. Firstly I want them to be ready at the same time as the others. Secondly because the water from them is used in my baking process for extra flavour and to stop the possibility of any drying during cooking.
  • Finely dice a half dozen mushrooms and lots of fresh herbs. I have used rosemary, parsley and basil and these will add to the flavour of the gravy as I am not using meat today.
  • Add these to the baking dish and next cut veggies similarly sized ... anything you fancy putting  the heavier root veggies in first to give them a little extra time, I have used but am not limited to the following ...
  • Potato 
  • sweet potato 
  • swede 
  • parsnip 
  • turnip
  • beetroot 
  • pumpkin
  • carrot 
  • Season with a little salt and cracked black pepper and toss with a little olive oil and a splosh of balsamic vinegar. Stir to coat everything and then add half of the beetroot water. Bake in a 160 oven quite slowly and when they are about half cooked give them another toss and add the remainder lighter veggies along with the remaining beetroot water to finish all at the same time. 
  • baby zucchini
  • whole mushrooms 
  • tomato  
  • pear 
  • While these are are finishing baking steam some green veggies for a healthy balance and use the water from these to make your gravy.
Gravy is then made by frying a sliced onion in the residue oil and grabbing up all of the herb and diced bits of flavour (add a little oil if necessary) when the onions are softened fry off a couple of fork fulls of a commercial gravy mix into the pan and then gradually add your steamed veggie water until the correct thickness is achieved... This gravy is the best ...as it has lots of flavour without any meat juices...
  • All of this process can be turned into a meat meal by adding a whole chicken right in the middle of the baking dish or chicken thigh pieces throughout...turn the chicken at the break when adding the last of the veggies and all of the herbs and flavours will enhance its flavour.
Delish Delish Delish... 

Friday, March 16, 2012

Healthy STEAMED veggies with mushroom gravy

Healthy steamed veggies with mushroom sauce

Filled Full of Flavour
  • Chunky chop all of your veggies and place the heaviest root vegetables down on the bottom of a double steamer saucepan system through to the light leafy vegetables on the top. I have steamed potato, pumpkin, sweet potato, Zucchini, broccoli, cabbage and asparagus and then topped them all with a thin mushroom  gravy. Reserve some of the water after cooking as this is used to make the gravy.
  • Mushroom gravy is made by sautéing sliced mushrooms in a little olive oil, add a heaped fork full of a commercial gravy mix and stir into the mushrooms. Gradually start adding a little of the steamed veggie water until a thin gravy is achieved.


Friday, March 9, 2012

Stuffed Peppers (Filled Capsicum)

Stuffed Peppers

Baked Stuffed Peppers
I have done a little cheating with this recipe so that it is guaranteed  not to fail. I have used cooked rice and I have grated the veggies rather than diced them and I have also very quickly blanched the peppers whole to ensure everything is evenly cooked when serving. Quick and simple with a little prep.

  • For about 6 large peppers you will want about  a cup of cooked cooled rice or couscous.
  • Fry off half an onion in a couple of tablespoons of oil and add to this a grated zucchini and the equivalent of either carrot or pumpkin or a bit of both. 
  • Then add a tin of drained crushed tomatoes reserving the juice for the baking dish.
  • Add fresh herbs of your choice I have used parsley and dill and season with salt & pepper.
  • A dash of water added if needed to make a moist but not wet mixture will also capture all the flavourings from the bottom of the pan. 
  • Blanch your whole peppers in boiling salted water for about a minute. You can leave this step out if you like a crunchier finished product.
  • Cut off the tops scrape out the seeds and fill with the mix and place them in a baking tray with the reserved tomato juice and about half cup of water.
  • Bake for about 10-15 minutes.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Pumpkin & Rice Tart (with/without Prosciutto outer layer)

Pumpkin & Rice Tart

Pumpkin & Rice Tart with Tomato salad
Pumpkin is in great supply at the moment and so I am utilising it in as many different ways as possible. This recipe has been made with left over cooked rice and butter nut pumpkin...  As a meat variation line the heavy based pan with over lapping slices of prosciutto trimming to fit if necessary, at the beginning before adding the mix and this will become a crunchy outer tart layer....

  • Firstly slice up 6 spring onions, a stork of coriander and a bunch of dill and place these in a large bowl.
  • Add to this 2 cups of cooked rice, 8 eggs, 150gms crumbled feta and salt and pepper. Whisk the mix with a fork to combine and place it into a greased heavy based ovenproof frying pan on your stove top over a moderate heat for 5 mins to start to set the base. 
  • While this is happening grate 1kg of pumpkin and toss with 1 tbs oil in a bowl.
  • Top the egg mixture with the grated pumpkin and another 50gms of crumbled feta.
  • Transfer the pan to a preheated 200 oven for 15 minutes. Then turn the oven over to the grill setting and cook the tart for a further 5 mins until the egg is set and pumpkin and feta are golden.
I have served our tea tonight with a simple tomato salad... Tomato, spring onion, dill, olive oil and lemon juice.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Pumpkin Couscous with Coriander Mayonnaise

Pumpkin Couscous with Coriander Mayonnaise
This salad is one of my favourites and has on occasion been requested by family members when we get together... for tea tonight I am serving this with a pan fried fillet of salmon however you could choose a steak or a cold shredded chicken could be added... remember you are only limited by your imagination, adaptation is creation.  
  • Combine in a small bowl a couple of tablespoons each of olive oil and honey, 1 tablespoon each of ground cumin, cinnamon and cardamom. Toss through approx 1kg of 3cm diced pumpkin and bake on a flat baking paper lined tray, in a 180 oven, turning once for about 30mins.
  • While the pumpkin is baking... bring to the boil 1 cup of vegetable stock. Add 1 cup of couscous. Stir well. Remove from the heat and let it stand with the lid on for a couple of minutes then fluff with a fork and transfer to a large bowl to cool.
  • Stir in the cooled pumpkin, 4 thinly sliced spring onions, about 1/2 cup of pistachio nuts, a couple of large handfuls of rocket leaves or greenery of your choice and lots of coriander leaves picked off the stems.
  • Finally drizzle over the mayonnaise which is made up of 1/2 cup of your favourite mayo, (mine is Praise Whole Egg) 1 tablespoon of finely grated orange rind, 2 tablespoons orange juice, about 1/2 cup of finely chopped coriander including the crunchy stems and salt & pepper to taste.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Pumpkin Pie


Pumpkin Pie


  • Pick from the garden a whole Jap pumpkin. Improvise with this step if necessary however note that pumpkins are simple to grow don't need a lot of looking after and the bees do all the work for you.
  • Bake it whole slowly in 160 oven for about 3 hours then cut off the top and scrape out the seeds and discard them. Scoop out the wonderful warm flesh of the freshly baked pumpkin and put it in a food processor try not to eat too much of it at this stage because it will smell and taste divine.
  • You can make your own pastry for the base(this is my plan eventually I am working my way up to this outcome) or buy the frozen one I am using shortcrust. Line your prepared pie dish and blind bake until just golden brown while the pumpkin is cooking to economise on power. I am always wondering what else I can cook at the same time to conserve energy.
  • Add 1tsp vanilla paste or vanilla extract plus 1/2 tsp each of cinnamon, nutmeg & ginger to the pumpkin flesh and blend them all up in a food processor.
  • Beat together lightly 1 egg and 1 egg yolk, 1 cup of brown sugar,  and 1/2cup cream (if you desire). The cream can be left out if your feeling the need to be extra healthy today or served with it separately.
  • Stir the egg mix through the pumpkin mix and spoon into the cooled prepared pie crust. Then bake in a moderate 180 oven until set.
  • Serve with a dollop of double thickened cream (by leaving out both cream options you have made a dairy free dessert)and a sprinkle of cinnamon and pepitas for decoration.
Pumpkin and Cinnamon are best friends.