Meat and two veg 2

Somehow, when Nat cooks the steak it's "Beef Porterhouse Steak with....". But when I make it, it's just "Meat and two veg". I lack finesse I think.

I did manage to make delicious onions to go with it though: Onions in half rings, cooked with a splash of both Worcestershire sauce and white wine vinegar, and a little salt. Yum!


I don't know the technicalities of calzone, but this was pretty nice. It was nice to have something different. I used my Nice Buns recipe and rolled it out and filled it, next time I'll use a heavier dough maybe? Don't know.

Quote from Nat: "There's definitely room for improvement, but it's good". Which is pretty much spot on.

Room for improvement:
- Find a way to make sure all the dough on the bottom is cooked
- Make the sauce more tomatoey
- See if we can get more filling to bread ratio, even though I think it was pretty perfect, Nat would like more filling.
- Some sort of glaze on the bread would be nice
- Do it all much, much faster

Pork and Bok Choy

Nat stir fried up this simple number tonight. I go nuts for it because it uses oyster sauce which is DELICIOUS. That's how people make delicious stir fry.

This 'n' That and Lasagna

My friend Johanna recently reminisced that one of her favourite dinners growing up was what her mother called "This 'n' That": a plateful of leftovers and whatever was left in the kitchen pretty much. This is what the kids had for dinner,

(broccoli, water, yoghurt, peaches, cracker, rehydration liquid for Sadie. She got pretty sick)

(Sadie finishing off a piece of cheese)

(the reject bowl: spaghetti, for the 4th(?) evening this week (the meatballs got eaten), banana, peeled pear, plum)

because the main event wasn't ready in time.

This is the first lasagna we've made at this house, so that's AT LEAST 6 months! It was so good!

But I overdid it with the cream.

Cream in the lasagna? Oh yes we did! After it's all assembled (with uncooked pasta) we bake for 10 min, pour over cream, 10 min more, more cream, 10 min more, more cream, 10 minutes more. Well those were my instructions from Nat. He normally does the "creaming". But I didn't fully understand his description of how much cream to put in. So after baptising the lasagna (by immersion) after the first 1o minutes it took another 40 minutes for the cream to absorb. Or look like it was absorbed.

Lasagna with your cream anyone?

Spaghetti and Meatballs 5

Sorry about the lack of posting recently. We haven't really been eating anything original is the thing. But I thought I'd better post something so here's what we had tonight.

Remember, the best ever meatballs recipe is Rachael Ray's. Give it a whirl.

Corned beef hash

Corned beef (from a can)
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
3 Tbsp mustard
Salt and pepper

Boil and mash potatoes. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well. Fry in oil or butter in a pan in patties until you've got a nice brown on each side. Done!


Pretty easy really, it's all to taste. But that's what I use to bind it together. We had this with brocolli and tomatoes on the side, but it would fit with almost any vegetables. We also eat it with tomato sauce and mustard.

Nat's steak and mushrooms

Nat made delicious steak tonight with sauteed mushrooms and shallots, fresh/parbaked sour dour and rice as sides. We ate it like an open sandwich, topping the bread with the mushrooms/shallots, then the steak and then mustard. It was really good! Nat sure is good at cooking his steak, I'll tell ya. (With brocolli and carrots also not pictured)

Mushroom Risotto

Mushroom Risotto

3 Tbsp oil
50g butter
2 small onions
3 cloves garlic
8 large button mushrooms (250g ish maybe?)
5 slices of shaved ham
3 rice cups of rice (how much is a rice cup? Much smaller than a standard/metric cup)
6 standard cups of water
4 tsp chicken stock/4 stock cubes (dissolved in the water)

Put oil and butter in the pan and melt the butter. Add chopped onions, crushed/chopped garlic, chopped mushrooms and diced shaved ham and saute until they're all looking yummy (10 minutes maybe?) Add the rice to the pan and "brown" it a little bit. Add more butter if you need to. Make sure the rice gets nicely coated. Add 2 cups of water. Cook on high for 5 minutes or until the water is about 3/4 absorbed/cooked off. Add the rest of the water with the stock. Cook until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender, about 20 minutes.


This was pretty nice but you may want to consider making some changes to adjust to taste. My suggestions:
-Add peas. Lots of them. 1-2 cups of peas.
-Scrap the ham. Or use less. It affected the flavour a bit too much.
-Use less stock, maybe half the amount, and add a bit of salt instead.

I also don't know if this is the correct way to cook "risotto". But it works for me.

Stir fry with prawns 3

The prawns were extremely sparse tonight and I added strips of cooked scrambled eggs. I've got the flavour right though, so we're on the right track.

Midnight Spaghetti 6 (with a twist...)

I added to our classic recipe tonight about 200g of tinned tuna in oil (with the oil), fresh tomatoes (quartered or eigthed) and fresh basil. It cooked up a treat! (Nat wasn't eating with us because of work etc. so I was spared any bad feedback)

If making it again I would add a squeeze of lemon juice just to finish it off. Yum!

Beef porterhouse steak with creamy mushroom sauce 2

Nat made this tonight so I'm not sure the recipe he used but it was GOOD. I heart creamy mushroom sauce. (Peas and corn included in our dinner too, not pictured)

Tomato and Cheese "Risotto"

My sister Erika's recipe. More or less. Over Christmas she made this for the big family gathering. My nephew said "Dad, when I throw up, it looks like this". But he still ate it and liked it (I think...?).

Tomato and Cheese "Risotto"

2 slices middle bacon (I actually use shaved ham. WAY cheaper!)
1 onion, chopped
50g butter
2 1/2 cups rice
1 400g (ish) can tomatoes
4 cups water
chilli powder
1 cup (or more) grated cheese (like Edam)

Cook onion and bacon/ham in oil. Add butter. When melted add rice and stir while cooking for a few minutes. Add tomatoes, water and seasonings and cook, stirring occasionally until rice is tender. Stir in cheese until melted.


Did I leave anything out Erika? Is that even right? That's what I did the other night when I made it anyway. Is that what you do?
Also, it's named "Risotto" because I'm sure that it's not cooked right to be a risotto, but that's what I call it.

Burritos 6

I felt like burritos this morning. I got mince out of the freezer. We had taco sauce which was unusual for us. And avocado. This was going to be great. When I came to making it I cooked up the mince, then realised I didn't have anything else that we normally stuff burritos with other than the taco sauce and avocado. SO a little different tonight, I added plenty of corn to the mince mixture, and chopped up some capsicum (really small so that the kids would eat it) and that was us! Sour cream, mince with corn, cheese, capsicum, avocado, taco sauce.

Tuna Casserole

250g penne or other dried pasta
5 eggs
200g tinned tuna in oil (or thereabouts, whatever you've got will do. I forgot to check the can for weight and now it's out of the house)
1 cup corn kernels (from frozen, canned or fresh)
1/3-1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 capful Paul Newman's balsamic vinaigrette

Boil your pasta and eggs. Slice the eggs and add everything to a bowl and stir to mix. Add a crumb topping and gill if you'd like, or eat warm or cold as a pasta salad.

Crumb topping

2 pieces bread
Lemon pepper seasoning

Whizz bread in a blender and add seasonings to taste. Spoon pasta salad into ovenproof dish and sprinkle over top. Grill until golden.


As you can see my crumb topping got a little bit darker than "golden". I thought this was SUPER good, the kids liked it pretty well, and Nat ate it but didn't like it because he doesn't like tuna or eggs (generally). So it was a success I think! I definitely liked it enough to make it again, and it was really quick and easy.

Tasty Sausages with Polenta Chips

My first time cooking polenta! It thought it was alright, but it was also my first time eating it so I'm not sure if I missed the mark or not.

Tasty sausages (finally!)

8 sausages (sliced diagonally into 4)
2 onions (sliced into wedges)
4 mushrooms (sliced in half. Feel free to use more)
2 tomatoes (sliced in half. Feel free to use more)
Good splash olive oil
Generous drizzle worcestershire sauce

Combine everthing in a roasting pan and mix with your hand to make sure everything is coated nicely. Bake at 200 degress Celcius for 20 minutes or until cooked.


Polenta chips

2 cups polenta
4-5 cups water
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
pinch thyme

Boil water and gradually pour in polenta, constantly stirring. Stir as it cooks until it is done (tender, also a spoon should stand up in the middle). Add more water if you think you need to. It should be sort of porridgy when it's done, but not too wet, so don't add too much water. Stir in the cheese and thyme. Spread out flat on greaseproof paper on a baking tray/in a brownie tin/other flat tin and refrigerate overnight to set OR cover and put in freezer for 20 minutes. Remove from freezer and turn out onto a baking tray (it should just fall right out of tin without help). Slice into chip shapes, spread out on the tray and grill until beginning to brown, 15-20 minutes.


I loved the sausages, they were a bit dry because in my hurry I turned the oven off and left them in there rather than taking them out, but the flavour was good. I wasn't too hot on the polenta, but I liked it well enough. It's good to have another option for a side dish. Maybe polenta is just not my thing. I only cooked/had it because it was passed on to me from a friend moving overseas emptying out her cupboards. Still. It was ok.
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