Ahhh, cheese....who doesn't love cheese? I am sure there are those that do not like it but I am certainly not one of them. I love most types, blue is probably the one exception. Although I have had a nice blue cheese dressing previously (not the one I made a while ago though). Rick Stein's Swiss Cheese Fondue looks beautifully rich and glorious and would be terrific to share with friends.
I, however, was much more interested in two different recipes in issue # 72. The first was Jude Blereau's Roasted Eggplant with Chickpeas, Black Olive & Capsicum salsa. A seemingly glorious combination of stuff that I would have never put together myself. The salsa is made up of chickpeas, kalamata olives, roasted capsicum, herbs and feta. This is piled on top of eggplant halves that have been roasted in the oven after being fried for a couple of minutes and then basted with a balsamic, tamari, garlic, and basil marinade. I cannot wait to get my hands on some nice eggplants to make this, just the wrong season. There are still some in stores but they are a bit over ripe and kind of soft.
The other recipe that I was very intrigued with was Melbourne cafe, Birdman Eating's, Coconut Quinoa Porridge with Banana and Palm Sugar. I am always looking for something different for breakfast as well as a new way to use quinoa so this ticked all the right boxes. I was, however, quite disappointed. The palm sugar syrup was a bit over powering. My main problem though was the coconut milk I used though, Ayam brand. It was incredibly thick and the end product was a bit tinny tasting. I will try it using either a different brand of coconut milk or regular cows milk and see what it is like. I think that next time I will sweeten with maple or agave syrup.
Coconut Quinoa Porridge with Banana and Palm Sugar
- 2 cups (500ml) coconut milk
- 1 cup (200 g) quinoa
- 250 g dark palm sugar, cut into small chunks (or use 1 1/4 firmly packed cups dark brown sugar)
- 2 bananas, sliced
- 1/2 c (35 g) shredded coconut, lightly toasted
- Combine coconut milk with 1 cup (250 ml) water in a jug, then set aside.
- Combine quinoa and a pinch salt in a saucepan.
- Add half the coconut milk/water mixture, or just enough to cover the grains.
- Bring to the boil, stirring, over medium-low heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 20 - 25 minutes or until the grains are tender and the mixture is a porridge consistency, topping up with some of the remaining liquid if it is becoming too thick.
- Meanwhile, place the palm or brown sugar and 1 cup (250ml) water in another saucepan over low heat. Stir to dissolve sugar, then simmer for about 30 minutes until it is a thick, syrupy consistency and the mixture has reduced by half.
- To serve, pour about 1 tbsp of syrup in the bottom of each bowl, spoon over the porridge then add a little more syrup. Top with sliced banana and sprinkle with toasted coconut and serve warm.
- Store any remaining palm sugar syrup in the fridge for up to 1 week.