06 September 2010

Journal Update

Despite the slowing down of blog-posts around these parts of late, the past couple of weeks have been busy-as-ever in my kitchen with a few more recipes tried and tested and successfully added to my skill-set.

Another wonky (but yummy) loaf of bread from the oven

The bread-baking continues, not every single day as hoped, but regularly enough that we seem to nearly always have the aroma of freshly baked bread wafting through the place – which may very well be my favourite part of this process. I am still experimenting with methods and ingredient quantities and this week I will change from baking it on a pizza-stone (as per the Artisan bread method) to letting the dough to rise in loaf tins in the hope of achieving higher, more square loaf-shaped bread for sandwich making. We’ll see how that goes.
Preparing a garden salad for a picnic

Dry-roasted sesame seeds to sprinkle over salads

Over the past few weeks I have returned several times to the recipe for coconut and spinach dahl sent in by Rachael. It’s a winner in our house and I’m so grateful you shared it with us, Rach. I even have lentils soaking in preparation for another dahl tonight – now that’s a first for me. Being prepared enough to soak lentils overnight – who would have thunk it!! All of this cooking practise is paying off.
Banana bread/cake was a hit at a recent gathering.

And, another success story – the recipe for which I shall share later today – is this delicious looking banana bread/cake. I can’t decide if it’s a cake or a bread – but either way it has been exciting to bake a cake from scratch with such great success. I’ve given this a whirl twice now and have both times proudly trotted off to a friend’s place bearing cake. Cooking tasty meals for my family is my aim, but to get to a point where I can confidently share my cooking with friends is an added achievement for me.

I’m also getting confident enough now to give recipes a go that I would never have tried, or even thought of, a couple of months ago. Last night, for Father’s Day, we had a roast dinner and I made caramelised onion gravy. Sounds fancy, huh? It is basically made by caramelising some onions, then adding a cup of vegetable stock and a dash of cornflour to thicken. It was so simple, but so good – worth a go as a vegetarian gravy alternative.

This week I’m planning to cook a new version of my usual vegetarian lasagne, more dahl, lots of bread and I’m going to attempt to make seaweed rice crackers for the girls. They love them and we buy packets and packets of them – quite expensive and a heap of wasted packaging involved. I have the rice flour ready, and the seaweed (some left-over nori sheets.) I’ll report back on the results.

Happy cooking!

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