Monthly Archives: July 2012

Two of us: Coconut and raspberry

Lately it feels like the wintery blanket cast over Melbourne is lifting. The weather is getting warmer, the sky gets dark later and light earlier.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t expect to be breaking out the jelly shoes and sunscreen anytime soon. And I’m not relishing the thought of oncoming summer like it would appear. I love winter, cold weather and rain suit me better than sun and sweat. Despite this, I have noticed a tropical theme to my food cravings lately.

Maybe this is in anticipation of cocktails on the roof of our apartment building, possibly it is because I have reached the overkill limit with my mashed potato intake. But I think the real reason is that I feel the time has come for another holiday in the Cook Islands. Just a few more days of eating starfruit, lighting mosquito coils, being bitten by territorial fish, pig hunting, and tearing round on a scooter. A few more nights drinking at Trader Jack’s and eating burgers at Palace Takeaways before heading to the Banana Court. A few more mornings reading books, feeding marmalade to a well trained moko and watching the puppies play on the lawn (they are big dogs now, with puppies of their own).

So lactose intolerance be damned, I will eat as much of the two below recipes as I can until the moment I am sitting on a rickety, 12 seater plane waiting for the moment when the pilot brings a whole new meaning to the term ‘driving arm’, hanging his arm out the window as he taxis the runway on the island I have been away from for far too long.

Breakfast Smoothie

1 egg
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup raspberries
1 banana
1 Tbsp coconut oil
1 Tbsp coconut sugar (optional)
pinch cinnamon and/or nutmeg (optional)

*Put all ingredients in a blender. Turn the blender on.

Raspberry and Coconut Chocolate
(inspired by http://www.sarahwilson.com.au/2012/04/my-sugar-free-raspberry-ripe-2/#more-4272, but adapted to be less healthy)
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/3 cup unsalted butter
2 Tbsp cocoa
2 Tbsp brown sugar/honey/golden syrup (whichever you prefer)
1/3 cup coconut, shredded or flakes
1/3 cup of frozen raspberries

*Melt the butter and oil in a pan, adding the oil first as it takes longer to melt
*Once melted, stir in the cocoa and sugar/honey/syrup. If using sugar, make sure it all dissolves
*Cover a baking tray/shallow bowl with baking paper and arrange berries and coconut evenly
*Pour the chocolate mixture from the pan on top and leave to set in the freezer
*Once set (usually about half an hour), cut into pieces

Raspberry and coconut playlist

Leon Russell: Back to the Island
Prince: Raspberry Beret
SeƱor Coconut & His Orchestra: Around The World (Daft Punk cover)
The Monkees: It’s Nice To Be With You
The Beatles: Two Of Us

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Leftover meals: Vegetarian pizza and Apple crumble

You know those end-of-the-week blues? That feeling you get after finding out your train is cancelled when you’re trying to get home after a long day. Or when the train finally arrives and no-one gives their seat to an old man. Or when you brave a central city train station at 5pm. Or when you’ve just eaten a Krispy Kreme donut for the first time. Or when all of the above happens almost all at once.

These are not big problems. In fact, assigning them the word ‘problem’ is too generous. However, it is times like this when there is nothing better than the thought of coming home to a warm house, an easy meal and a blanket on the couch. And is there a more perfect time to be lazy and use up the dodgy looking food rattling around the bottom of the fridge?

The pizza recipe below was quick, delicious and a great way to use up all the suspicious looking ingredients in my vege drawer. The topping combination is of course only a suggestion as the glory of pizza is that you can put pretty much anything you can imagine on it.

Vegetarian pizza

1 head of broccoli, chopped into medium sized pieces
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 zucchini/courgette, roughly chopped
1/2 red onion, sliced
2 Tbsp thyme
3 mushrooms, sliced
Basil pesto to cover bases
1/2 cup of cheese
Pita breads

*Cover pita breads with a thin layer of basil pesto and enough cheese that all the ingredients will stick
*Arrange all other ingredients on pizza (along with anything else you want to add)
*Bake in oven at 200 degrees celcius for about 15-20 minutes or until pizza crust is crispy
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Apple crumble for one

1 granny smith apple, peeled, cored and cut into largeish chunks (1 chunk = 1/8th of the apple)
50 g butter
1 cup flour
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp unsalted pistachios, finely chopped

*Arrange apple pieces in the bottom of a ramekin
*Mix together butter, flour and sugar with your fingers until you get a fine breadcrumb like consistency (see note below)
*Add nutmeg, cinnamon and pistachios to the crumble mixture and cover the apple pieces in the ramekin
*Bake on 200 degrees celcius for about half an hour or until the apples have gone soft and the crumble topping is crispy
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The measurements above are a ballpark figure as every time I make this I just make a judgement call. The topping is always different, but never bad (yet). I think it is best to value texture over measurements when it comes to crumble topping. Experiment with different amounts of butter/sugar/flour (you can also add oats or coconut) until when mixed together you get a fine breadcrumb kind of consistency that tastes not too sugary (you should have more flour than sugar).

As an added bonus, leftover crumble is great on porridge, or in tomorrow’s start-of-the-weekend apple crumble…

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