Stuffed grilled mushrooms

It doesn’t get much easier than this, and your taste buds will be so excited! I serve these as a little side dish at BBQs, Spanish themed dinners and any Mediterranean lunches I’m putting on really. Consider it next time you need that little something extra.

Ingredients

Large mushrooms, about the size of your palm

A jar of homemade pesto (or bought pesto or cashew rocket dip)

 

Method

Cut any large protruding stems from your mushrooms. Grill your mushrooms on a medium heat, with no oil, starting on the back flat side. Turn after about ten minutes and grill the other side, ensuring you avoid breaks in the top, and preferably having the top sides touch the pan, so the heat goes up into the undercarriage of the mushroom.

Now warm your pesto. If you’re not a fan of pesto or you like a certain dip that is green leaf and nutty, use it! This is your creation, and you need to like it! So warm it up, and then spoon it into the mushrooms. Serve immediately and enjoy!

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Stuffed grilled mushrooms

One pot vegetable all in

This dish was created because I really dislike buying or growing veges and then something happens like an impromptu dinner out, or I’ve just got a bit too much, and there is temptation to waste the food. It is simple, and freezes well in containers for warm up meals. So next time you are cleaning out the fridge, just consider this.

Ingredients

A splash of olive oil

Quarter of a cup of verjuice

A handful of herbs

All the veges in your crisper that you think will die in the next 2 days!

So for me, that was some heirloom carrots, an onion, a turnip, swede and parsnip. I also found some zucchini lurking in the back with a couple of stalks of celery. But truly, use whatever vegetables you are rescuing, because you’ve worked hard for the money to buy those veges, or you’ve worked hard growing them – so unless the chickens are starving, please don’t throw them – make this easy, colourful, tasty dish!

 

Method

Splash a little olive oil in a pan and add all of your vegetables. Cook on a low to medium heat for about 20 minutes and then add a little verjuice, I use about quarter of a cup. Sprinkle with your favourite herbs and serve!

One pot vegetable all in

Crumbed goat cheese stuffed olives

So my hubby has a favourite Spanish restaurant and they serve crumbed stuffed olives. Father’s Day was upon us, so as a sign of love the kids and I made a big Spanish meal, including his beloved olives! They are not too fiddly, my 8 year old actually readied them and I just fried them. So please don’t be daunted in any way, these scrumptious babies are worth the effort and fit for a king… or my hubby!

 

Ingredients

As many large goat cheese stuffed olives you want

An egg

½ cup plain flour

1 cup panko breadcrumbs (or fine normal crumb if you prefer)

Enough vegetable oil to give you over an inch in the pot you choose to use

 

Method

Ensure the olives are dry, the kids can pat them with paper towel if necessary. Set up your bench as a conveyer station – flour in a bowl, then your egg, beaten for coating, and finally your crumb. Now roll the olives in your flour giving them a light dusting. Now transfer to the egg wash coating all over, and finally the crumb, ensuring you get as much on as you can. Place your olives on a plate/tray and when all are ready, pop them in the fridge for about 20 minutes just to let the crumb set a little.

Heat your oil in a fry pan on high heat. Deep fry the olives for about 3 minutes until golden brown. Fetch them out and place on a wire rack with paper towel underneath to catch any excess oil. Try not to eat them all as you make them, and serve with love!

Crumbed goat cheese stuffed olives

Christmas pretzels

These bad boys are pretty yummy. You control how much sugar and cinnamon you use, and some years I double the sugar and it is everywhere, crunching and taking over the entire pretzel! This year, I’ve gone a little less sugar. It should be noted that this is a child friendly recipe because they can do every step on their own! So it is a winner in my home for toddlers wanting to do some Christmas baking (just have an adult do the oven), or even for teenagers who want to make edible treats for their friends as gifts. Enjoy these lovely little snacks and have a beautiful Christmas!

 

Ingredients

1 bag pretzels

2 egg whites

3 tbs ground cinnamon

3 tbs white sugar

 

Method

Put the egg white in a lunch box or sealable container, lid on, and shake it for a minute.

Add the pretzels, lid back on, and shake it some more! Really Zumba yourself!! We are wanting all the pretzels to have a coating of egg white.

Now add the cinnamon and sugar, lid back on and shake, shake, shake! Spread them evenly onto a lined baking tray (I used two) and pop them in the oven at 180 degrees Celsius for around 20 minutes. Breathe in the air of that kitchen – nothing beats the smell of baking cinnamon! Allow them to cool down and ta da! You made cinnamon pretzels!

Christmas pretzels

Gracie’s ice blocks

You can use any of your favourite fruits for this quick and cheerful recipe. Sometimes we use whatever leftover fruit is chopped up in the fridge so we have combinations of mango and banana, or rockmelon and lychee… you can get creative with this! So long as you are going to like it!

Ingredients

2 cups of frozen mixed berries

2 cups chopped kiwi fruits (or another fruit you like)

250ml cup coconut water

Method

Place the berries and half the coconut water in a nutirbullet or blender until smooth. Spoon into ice block moulds as you wish. Next, blitz the kiwi fruit and rest of the coconut water in the same way, and again spoon into your moulds. Freeze overnight and you’re done!

Gracie’s ice blocks

Christmas meringues

Christmas is such a lovely time of year! The hope of the season with the birth of the Lord just flows through all we do! There is a simple joy in baking these little beauties, whether they be for an edible gift, the table of treats or just because!

Ingredients

5 egg whites

A pinch of salt

300 g caster sugar

2 tbs of cocoa

1 tsp cinnamon

 

Method

Put the sugar on a tray and place in the oven at 200 degrees Celsius for about 5 minutes or so. Whisk the egg whites and salt until the mix looks frothy, then add the hot sugar a spoon at a time. Whisk with an electric mixer on high speed for 10 minutes until the mix is thick, white, glossy and stiff. Turn the oven down to 120 degrees Celsius.

Sift the chocolate cocoa and cinnamon into the mixture. Now tumble the mixture a little, not stirring, just folding a few times. Spoon tablespoons of the mixture onto lined baking trays and use a metal knife or spoon to make a few peaks on each meringue. Bake in the slow oven for about 45 minutes (depending on the size of your meringues). This is more drying than baking, you don’t want them cracked, just crispy on the outside and a little gooey on the inside!!

These make lovely Christmas gifts and keep for two days in air tight containers. Enjoy your beautiful meringues!

Christmas meringues

Watermelon salad

Seriously it won’t get much simpler than this. It won’t get more yummy and fresh either! The combination of the melon sweetness with the sharpness of the red onion and the freshness of the mint really sing together! Enjoy what I like to call my Aussie icon!

  

Ingredients

¼ of a watermelon

1 red onion

2 tbs balsamic glaze

A handful of mint

150 g feta cheese

 

Method

Cut your watermelon into cubes or as desired. Slice your onion thinly and squeeze on the balsamic. Stir together until the glaze covers your onion. Now add your onion and crumble or cut your feta and add to the dish. Tear up your mint and add to your salad. Now lightly toss a few times until combined. Ta da! You are done! This pairs nicely with any roast pork or pork dish, and is a fabulous side dish to any summer lunch or dinner. I hope you enjoy this great Aussie salad!

Watermelon salad