Thursday 30 September 2010

September 2010 - Homestyle Beef Burger

Final day of the month and final issue for September. Thankfully I have managed to get all the posts done before the month has ended. However it will have to be a post and go as I really need to get some sleep tonight as I have to be up early and head off to a doctor's appointment in another town. I am not normally a morning person so will need to get to bed pretty soon. 

From this lovely issue I decided to make Valli Little's Homestyle beef burger. It was nice but, to be honest, not that different from most burgers. I do like a good burger. Home made are always the best. Although one of our local cafes makes a very good hamburger too. I didn't put capsicum on it. I also didn't have any aioli so I used some of my homemade tomato relish and spread the bun with mild English mustard. I guess that the capsicum and aioli would have added a bit of a twist on a regular burger. Sometimes I just have to compromise or should that be want to compromise.

Homestyle Beef Burger

Makes 4 

  • 600 g beef mince 
  • 1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes 
  • 1 onion, finely chopped 
  • 1 tsp dried oregano 
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard 
  • 1 egg beaten (I didn't worry about beating it) 
  • 1/2 c (35 g) fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 c (25 g) grated parmesan 
  • 2 red capsicums, quartered 
  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 4 burger buns, split, toasted 
  • Lettuce, tomato, gherkins and aioli, to serve 
  • Combine first 8 ingredients and mix thoroughly.
  • Form into patties and chill. 
  • Grill capsicum until skin blackens. Place in plastic bag for a few minutes or until you can slip the skin off. 
  • Cook meat patties in a fry pan over a medium heat for 5 minute each side or until cooked through. 
  • Place lettuce, tomato, capsicum, gherkin, meat patty and aioli on buns and serve. 

Wednesday 29 September 2010

September 2009 - Grilled Chicken Wraps with Chorizo Sauce

Moving right along so that I get these posts squeezed it. I did mean to get this done a lot earlier so that I could get some decent sleep tonight but it just hasn't happened. Although the time does seem to be out on these posts. I know that it wasn't 3 am when I posted last night, more like 11 pm. I should have a look at the settings here on blogger to change my time zone. Although I suppose it doesn't really matter that much. 

There were some nice looking recipes in here. Ben O'Donoghue's Spring pasta looked really good full of spring onions, broad beans and pea with a creamy sauce. Now I could say that I had only just made a creamy pasta so decided not to make another one but the truth is that I cooked from this issue long before I did the Prawn linguine with pea pesto. I am not normally keen on pasta dishes that use cream as I find it a bit rich so even with the lovely vegetables I decided to try something else. 

I was going to make Valli's Little pea felafel with radish & pea shoot salad. It looked really good and I love felafel. I couldn't get any radishes and I wasn't really sure what to replace them with. Plus the recipe wasn't all that different from the one that I usually make so I decided to make something else. 

The recipe that really caught my eye were the Grilled chicken wraps with chorizo sauce (same recipe with a slightly different name on delicious magazine UK website). I love chorizo and this recipe made it into a delicious sauce to go with these terrific wraps. I would recommend threading the chicken onto skewers. I didn't do it, I figured that I would just fry the chicken chunks in a fry pay. It made a whole lot of mess and I think that it would have been less messy with the chicken skewered. Probably even better if I had put them under the griller in the oven to cook. I used one of Mission's garlic and herb wraps instead of a tortilla. I warmed it slightly in a fry pan and served with some lettuce and creme fraiche. It was a wonderful lunch with leftovers for the next day. (Not a very good picture to go with this one, I found it hard to figure out how to photograph a wrap. ) 

Tuesday 28 September 2010

September 2008 - Mango Lassi

Woo hoo! Two posts in two days. Ridiculous what I get excited about at times really. Although since it has been a while since I have managed to string posts together then it can only be a good thing. Having a deadline really helps though. It would have been easy to head off to bed tonight without getting another post done but I decided that if I didn't do it tonight then I might end up putting it off for another day and I would end up having to do three posts in one day to get it all done. Actually, unlike all the other issues where I got the actual cooking done quite some time before writing the post I only just made something from this issue tonight. It is a good thing that I have already made something from the 2009 and 2010 issues. 

I had always intended to make Nigella's Maple pecan muffins. They sounded just scrumptious. Lovely little muffins full of nuts, wheatgerm and 125 ml of maple syrup. I love maple syrup. I wonder if that harks back to my Canadian background. Although I don't really remember maple syrup being around my grandparent's house. I remember plenty of other syrups, Aunt Jamima being the main one but plenty of Gramma's homemade ones too. Pincherry being my favourite of the homemade pancake syrups. To be honest I am not even sure what pincherries are but I know that they made a great syrup. For what ever reason I just could not get it together to get these muffins made. I kept putting it off until tomorrow. Unfortunately it got to tonight and there really weren't too many more options for tomorrow and I just didn't feel like baking tonight. It is strange though as it is not like muffins are even difficult.

I ended up making Jamie Oliver's Mango Lassi and I am so glad that I did. It was the best drink that I have ever had. I guess that it is kind of like a smoothie but so much better. I cannot believe that I have been missing something so good all these years. I had heard of a mango lassi before just never had one, not that I can remember any way and if they are always like this I think I would remember. It was wonderfully tangy and slightly sweet, gloriously thick and smooth. The lime juice and zest in it was just perfect. I didn't add any sugar or honey to it as I thought it was just perfect the way it was. I used mango canned in juice as the fresh mangoes are still too expensive and I couldn't find any frozen ones. I highly recommend this one and will be making it regularly from now on. 

Mango Lassi 

Serves 4 (lol more like 2 or 1 if you are greedy) 
  • 2 large ripe mangoes or 4 frozen mango cheeks
  • 1 cup (280 g) natural yoghurt
  • 100 ml milk 
  • Zest and juice of 1 lime 
  • Brown sugar or honey, to taste (optional) 
  • A sprig of mint, to garnish
  • Place all ingredients except sugar/honey and mint in a processor or blender and process until smooth. 
  • Add sugar or honey to taste. 
  • Pour into glasses and serve with a sprig of mint.

September 2007 - Mixed Pea, Mint & Feta Salad

When I posted last I was sure that I would have no problem getting through all the posts for this month with ease and wouldn't, again, be doing my last post at the last minute. Then after a weekend of not feeling well here I am still with several issues to go and doing a new post late before heading off to bed so that I get through all of them. 

Issue # 64 was a relatively clean slate for me as it was one of the issues that I discovered I was missing when packing to move. I managed to obtain this issue on Ebay. The first two that I was missing popped up quickly but this one eluded me for several months. Clearly, I ended up getting it, thankfully these magazines are not big ticket items. LOL 

The Feta, tomato & broad bean tarts on the front cover look really good, lovely spring fare. However, this really needed fresh broad beans. I have grown them in the past but I didn't have a garden this winter so no fresh broad beans for me and I have never seen them in the green grocers or supermarket. I just didn't think that the frozen ones would taste as nice. 

I also considered making Ramy Megalaa's Dukkah-coated baked barramundi. It looked really nice and very easy. However nice barra is hard to come by here and I never seem to get the timing right so that I get to the fish truck while it is here on Thursdays. I am sure that you could use some other fish. Some time when I get a chance I will make it. Although I seem to say that about a lot of fish dishes. They all look so good, and I usually enjoy the ones that I make but I am hesitant to make fish meals regularly. 

I had planned on making Rick Stein's Imam Bayildi (eggplants stuffed with fried onions, tomato, chilli and parsley). I have made Imam Bayildi before, although not Rick's recipe. I used this one from Give Recipe. It is a super recipe and I just love the flavours. Rick's recipe has more onion, more garlic, chilli - fresh and powder, as well as harissa and lemon juice. I really wanted to try his version however I couldn't find any nice eggplants to make this at the time. I bought a nice one a couple of days ago so am planning to make this on Wednesday. Too late for this post though. 

Ultimately my decision was made when I was looking for something to serve with sumac & pomegranate molasses rack of lamb. I marinaded a rack of lamb in garlic olive oil and rubbed with sumac and poured over a couple of tablespoons of pomegranate molasses. I then roasted it in the oven for about 30 minutes. It was very nice. I served it with some herbed couscous and Valli Little's Mixed pea, mint & feta salad. It was the perfect match for the lamb and the couscous. I even spent an outrageous sum of money on the marinated Persian feta in the recipe. It was worth every cent, it was so good and I will definitely purchase again when needed. I only used about half of the mint called for as I thought that it would overpower the dish and I think that it would have but I guess that it is a personal thing. I think that next time I would add some parsley and/or basil as well. This is a really easy and delicious side dish. 

Saturday 25 September 2010

September 2006 - Prawn Linguine with Pea Pesto

This is going to be a short post for a couple of reasons. The first is that I have to get ready to go out shortly but I wanted to get this done and have just been phaffing about all day. It even took me until 3 pm before I hung out my first load of washing and since it has been cooler with cloud cover today it is unlikely to get dry before I have to go out. The second reason this is going to be a quick one is that I have come to loathe this issue of delicious magazine. 

This sight of its bright yellow cover annoys me. It seems ridiculous but I came very close to not making anything from it at all and admitting defeat. However I decided that I just couldn't do it. There were interesting recipes in it and I am sure that there would have been plenty in it that was tasty. Problem was I just didn't want to make any of it. There was only one recipe that interested me slightly and that was Valli Little's Lamb cutlets with lentil & fried-onion rice. However I have eaten a lot of lamb lately and I really wanted something different. So after much flicking through and flinging of the magazine I decided to make Valli's Prawn linguine with pea pesto. It was fine, as far as seafood pastas go. There wasn't really enough of the creamy sauce, but that could have been my fault. I reduced the recipe down to one serve but I am not great with measuring out pasta I just grab a bit and cook it and hope it is right. I am pretty sure that I ended up with a bit more than 100 g of dried pasta and therefore not enough sauce to go round. I didn't any snow peas either so just didn't bother. To be honest, I probably would bother making this again. The pea pesto was nice though. Maybe with chicken I would have liked it more...I doubt it though.  An okay dish from an annoying issue.

Wednesday 22 September 2010

September 2005 - Jamie Oliver's The Best Chorizo Sandwich

Well, I survived confession day at work without any problems. Although I did obsess about it right up until it was out in the open. I had planned to do this post earlier however I ended up having to work today, my day off, so did not get anything that I wanted to do today done. I really missed my day off pottering around in my garden and doing some house work so that I don't have to spend all weekend doing it. Oh well, I guess that the money for the extra day will be nice in my pay packet this week. 

I did consider making Juliette Kellow's Guacamole salad, which was a simple salad of lettuce, tomato, avocado, sun dried tomatoes, (the dreaded) coriander with a simple dressing. I also considered Bill Granger's My dahl recipe which sounded really nice but was also full of the dreaded coriander. I know that I could have left it out of both recipes but I decided that it would just be easier to make something else. 

On one of my days off I was looking for something to have for lunch. It was a bit of a miserable day so was looking for something warm to have. I decided on making Jamie Oliver's The Best Chorizo Sandwich and it really was the best. Although I will admit that it was the only chorizo sandwich that I have ever had. Not every day fare but definitely something to make again. The left over chickpea mixture was very nice with some crackers too. I didn't have any buns so instead served it on toasted bread. It was an easy, full of flavour lunch for a day off.

The Best Chorizo Sandwich 

Serves 4 

  • 4 roma tomatoes, seeded and diced 
  • 1 red chilli, seeded and sliced (I didn't have fresh chilli so used a shake of chilli flakes) 
  • Extra virgin olive oil 
  • 410 g can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • Zest & juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 4 chorizo, sliced on the diagonal 
  • 4 bread rolls 
  • Rocket (I used pea sprouts) 
  • Mix tomatoes, chilli & a dash of olive oil. 
  • Warm chickpeas in a pan over a medium heat, then season and add lemon zest, juice and a dash of olive oil. Whiz it up in a food processor until finely chopped. (I added some of the tomato mixture to help it whiz up without having to add too much oil.) Stir in tomato mixture.
  • Heat pan over a medium-high heat and fry chorizo until warm and starting to crisp on edges.
  • Split rolls, spread with the chorizo mix, top with chorizo and rocket. 

Sunday 19 September 2010

September 2004 - French Toast with Banana & Maple Syrup

Goodness it seems to be taking me days to get these posts done. I get one done and have every intention of doing another post the following day but I just don't seem to. Last week was busy at work with the boss away and I was kept on my toes. Plus I made a bit of an error and now owe a favour to one of the other firms in town which I will have to tell my boss about tomorrow when he is back. I have been obsessing about it a bit over the last few days. It is nothing terrible and certainly nothing that would cause me to worry about my position but still upsets me. Once the boss is back and I have "confessed" I will probably feel okay. It is just the anxiety about it all at the moment. The anxiety doesn't really help with writing either. At least I managed to get a bunch of other work done last week. There is plenty more that I wanted to get done however I kept myself pretty busy so I am satisfied. 

There wasn't a lot of different recipes that I had marked in issue 31 as a possibility to make. The first one was Baby cos & beetroot salad with soft-boiled egg. It was a nice easy salad recipe, although since cooked, diced beets were required not necessarily quick to make. Although if you already had some cooked beets it would be very quick. It was my intention to cook the beets one evening while making dinner and then use them for the salad for lunch the next day. I am not a huge fan of soft-boiled eggs to eat on their own. However here it would help form part of the dressing even though there is also mayonnaise too. I just didn't get around to cooking the beets when I had planned to do it. In fact they are still sitting in my crisper waiting to be used. I was just looking at them this morning when I was getting something else out. They are still fine but I really will need to use them soon.

I also considered making Ben O'Donoghue's Raspberry soufflé. I don't think that I have ever made a soufflé before. At least not that I can recall and I think that I would remember something like that. I have eaten and enjoyed them before. I also adore raspberries and pretty much everything that has raspberries in it. The absolute best thing with raspberries is my Gramma's raspberry freezer jam though and any thing that it is put on or used in. I just love it. Plus it was always made with raspberries freshly picked from her garden. There is nothing like fresh raspberries. Unfortunately, fresh raspberries are incredibly expensive here. It is rare to find them below $6.00 for a 125 g punnet. That is way too much money to be spending such a small amount of fruit. I don't have the space to grow them either really. Not that I grew them when I was living somewhere that I had the space. I had always planned to but just never got around to putting in a bed of raspberry canes. Not that there is anything fun about picking raspberries but there certainly is joy in eating them. If you ever have enough for a pie my Gramma had the best recipe for a fresh raspberry pie. Oh, the main reason I didn't make these soufflés, the recipe makes six. I am on my own and don't need six. Plus I think it would be one of those recipes that you don't screw around with and even halving could effect the outcome. A lot of desserts you could make and have left overs for several days, certainly not possible here. Oh well, maybe I will make them one day.

So one morning I was trying to decide what to have for breakfast and remembered that there was a nice looking recipe in this issue and so I decided to make Valli Little's French toast with banana and maple syrup. The recipe used brioche. I didn't have any and I certainly wasn't going to make it I did, however, have a loaf of the new Scone Toast from Tip Top which I bought on a whim when shopping. I had never had it before so decided to give it a try. It made a very nice French toast, although I think that the cream in Valli's recipe also contributed to it being a lot nicer than how I normally make French toast. This is not every day breakfast fare, nor do I think the scone toast is something that would be for every day but it was nice for a change and worked well here. I didn't have any bananas to put on top but I did have some strawberries and I poured a bit of cream over instead of the suggested creme fraiche. I just loved it and will make it again. 

Thursday 16 September 2010

September 2003 - Pork Cutlets with Sherry Vinegar

I was looking for something to make with the Spicy roast pumpkin, feta & olive salad from the 2002 issue so decided that it would help to get through the recipes to make something to go with it from issue #20. I had marked a lot of recipes that interested me in this issue so was sure that I could find something that would work with it. 

Jill Dupleix's Steak Diane is absolutely to die for. I have made this a number of times. I remember making it when this issue first came out and it was a revelation. Made, unlike most recipes that I know of, without cream. It has a brilliant tang to it and I would choose this recipe over a more traditional one any day. However, since I have already made this one more than once I had to move on to something else. 

Another favourite in the issue is Valli Little's Quick chicken & tomato casserole. It is a rich and full of flavour dish. I have modified the cooking method slightly though. I use thigh fillets and let the dish simmer for around 15 - 20 minutes. Remove the chicken and shred it and then return to the sauce to warm through and serve with pasta. The longer cooking time helps to develop the flavour and, I think, makes it a richer sauce. This is a fantastic quick weekday meal and wonderful served with a nice green salad.

I ended up making something a long a similar line to the steak diane in Valli Little's Pork cutlets with sherry vinegar. This was very enjoyable. I have a nice large bottle of sherry vinegar that I acquired from an online providore that was closing down. It is a wonderful vinegar that I have been using sparingly as I have no idea when or where I will be able to obtain more. I find that it is very smooth vinegar that has a bit of a kick but nothing like the raw kick from white vinegar. I even find it better than the good red vinegar that I have. However, since I am using it sparingly, I dutifully had to cut the recipe down so that I wasn't using 150 ml of my precious sherry vinegar however I may have cut it down too far as I was wanting more of this delicious sauce. I didn't have tarragon so I just left it out. I didn't have any creme fraiche so I left it out too. This was a rich and luscious sauce for the pork and all the vinegar and alcohol did a wonderful job of tenderising the pork cutlet which was just melt in the mouth. I personally think that creme fraiche would have spoilt it but that is just my personal tastes. I would definitely recommend making this one. The sweet, salty and spicy salad of pumpkin, feta and olives was a perfect accompaniment to this dish. 

Tuesday 14 September 2010

September 2002 - Spicy Roast Pumpkin, Feta and Olive Salad

Goodness me it has taken a while to get started posting this month. It is almost half gone and I am just doing my first one. At least it is just the posting that I am behind with and not both posting and cooking. I have been cooking my way through another stack of back issues of delicious. magazine. Spring is well and truly the theme running through all of the September issues, even if it doesn't always feel so spring-like outside. There are some wonderfully light, fresh and tasty meals on offer. 

I have to admit that I struggled with something to make from this issue. Not because there wasn't much that I wanted to make but because I had already made so much from it already. Jill Dupleix's Scotch egg recipe is a winner. She uses a muffin pan to pack the mince mixture around the boiled eggs and then bakes in the oven. I really enjoyed them when I first made then and have made them several times since.

The "a-z ingredients" feature in this issue is iceberg lettuce. I had already made the San choy bau, which was lovely, Nasi goreng, which was terrific, and the Marinated lettuce salad, which seems rather old fashioned but was very nice. The only other option in this feature was iceberg wedges with blue cheese dressing. I have made something similar in the past so decided not to go with that one. 

I did consider making Nigella's Chocolate Raspberry Pavlova. I love pavlova and it sounds so luscious. Nigella's description of it makes it sound wonderfully rich and crisp with a chewy centre. I was having my grandparents around for father's day on the first Sunday of this month so thought that I could make it for that. However the prohibitive cost of berries at that time made me hesitate. With raspberries being $9 for a 125g punnet it is rather crazy. Blueberries were about the same price. Strawberries were much cheaper but I thought that the sweetness of strawberries might make the whole thing a bit cloying. There was, of course, the option of frozen raspberries but they would not look near as nice. Instead I decided to make a pumpkin pie for Father's day dessert and make something else from this issue. 

Since I had the pumpkin, butternut pumpkin, for the pie I decided to make Bill Granger's Spicy roast pumpkin, feta & olive salad. It was very good. Although a little bit more cumin and cayenne pepper would have been good as it wasn't quite as spicy as I was expected. I didn't have any spinach so used iceberg lettuce. I didn't use as much oil in the dressing either. I probably used 1/2 to 1 tbsp and I didn't bother with the shallot. I would definitely make this one again. 

Spicy Roast Pumpkin, Feta and Olive Salad

Serves 2
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper 
  • sea salt
  • black pepper
  • 800g pumpkin, cut into 2cm cubes
  • 100g baby English spinach leaves
  • 150g marinated feta
  • 20 kalamata olives, pitted
  • 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp chopped  shallots (optional)
  • Preheat oven to 220C. 
  • Place oil, cumin, cayenne, salt and freshly ground black pepper in a bag, add pumpkin cubes, hold closed tightly and shake to cover evenly. 
  • Transfer to a roasting tray and bake 30mins or until tender and caramelised. 
  • Combine dressing ingredients an a jar and shake until combined.
  • Divide the spinach leaves among 2 plates and scatter pumpkin, feta and olives over the top. 
  • Drizzle with dressing.

Sunday 12 September 2010

Cake decorating

Okay, so I promise I will get on with posting from the September delicious magazine recipes soon, hopefully tomorrow. However I just wanted to post a couple of my latest cake creations. I just love cake decorating. I am quite happy to spend hours baking and decorating cakes. I would love to advertise and get paid for doing it but from what I understand I would need to apply for development approval to operate a business from home. I also understand in this situation you would also need to get you kitchen passed for health and safety. While I am sure I probably could do all that, it would involve a lot of application fees and all other associated costs and then you have the possibility of a neighbour objecting to the application and all that money going down the drain. The other thing that stops me is that cake decorating is a time consuming and, to be honest, pricey venture. There are a lot of associated costs and when you live in a country town I don't think that  you can charge what cakes are worth. So with all of that in mind I will just continue to make cakes for family and friends and leave it at that.

Over the last month I have had the chance to do two cakes, the first for my grandmother's 80th birthday and the second for a friend's daughter's 3rd birthday. For both of these cakes I made my stock standard chocolate cake. It is a wonderful recipe and makes the perfect cake for decorating without all the expense of a mud cake. The secret ingredient to this cake is the yoghurt. I have made it with sour milk and it is lovely but too light for decorating. I have made it with sour cream and the extra fat in the sour cream is too much for the cake. Yoghurt is just perfect for getting the density that is required for cake decorating. I even use this recipe for tiered cakes. Covered in either buttercream or ganache and fondant it is terrific, although I have to admit that I am partial to buttercream. The recipe handles being doubled and tripled without a problem. I do tend to use a lily nail in the centre in large deep pans though. I have had the occasional problem with lopsided rising, however I think that was due to my previous oven as I have had no such problems with my current oven. It is my most requested cake and is always highly praised by everyone who tries it, even my yoghurt hating uncle loves it. 

Chocolate Cake 

  •  125 g (1/2 c.) very soft butter
  • 1 1/4 c. sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 2/3 c. plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 2/3 c. cocoa
  • 1 1/2 c. sour milk or plain yoghurt
  • Pre-heat oven to 180 C
  • Place all ingredients into mixing bowl. 
  • Beat on a low speed until combined, approximately 2 – 3 minutes.
  • The beat on high speed for 10 minutes.
  • Pour mixture into a greased 24 cm round springform tin or bundt pan.
  • Bake for 30 to 45 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.
  • Cool in the tin for 5 minutes and then turn out. 
For my grandmother's 80th birthday cake, I did a double mix in a 24 cm square pan and then did a second tier of an 18 cm square pan which used 2/3 of a mix (I made cupcakes from the rest). I had to trim a little bit but not too much. I coated it with white buttercream, which was very soft as it was very rainy at the time, and then had strawberries dipped in dark chocolate and then drizzled with white chocolate. My grandmother loved it and I was pretty happy with it too. 

For the 3-yr-old's birthday cake I decided to do a castle cake. I made a 18 cm and 10 cm square cakes from one mix and also made a slab cake from another mix to use for the towers. I cut the towers out using a pastry cutter and put buttercream between the layers and secured with a skewer down the middle. I also used skewers to secure the towers to the cake. Covered the whole lot in pink buttercream, the top of the towers are made from mini ice cream cones iced with buttercream and then rolled in sprinkles, and used fondant for the accents. I also covered the cake board with green tinted fondant. All of the little girls at the party were so excited by the cake. They just loved it. I also made a royal icing tiara to go on top of the cake, but I don't have a picture of it. I also got some little "princesses" from the bakery aisle at the supermarket and put them on for decoration. I was very pleased with how it turned out. 

Wednesday 1 September 2010

August 2010 - Oatmeal & Raisin Cookies

Final post for August. This month seems to have gone on for an eternity. For some reason I just haven't been able to get into the swing of it this month and I struggled to get everything made and all these posts done. I have to admit to being slightly frustrated with this issue as there was a lot of recipes in it with gourmet ingredients. There were so many recipes that involved ingredients that, firstly, I didn't already have and, secondly, would be very difficult to source in a regional area. While I have no problem ordering online sometimes it would be nice not to have to find unusual items. It would be nice if they would offer substitute ingredients too. 

To be honest I wasn't overly interested in much in this issue.  While everything looked good there just wasn't that much that I really wanted to make myself. The poached quince & white chocolate trifles on the front cover look really good but I didn't have any quinces and I just didn't feel like making them. 

I ended up making Bill Granger's Oatmeal & Raisin cookies. When I went to the cupboard I didn't have any raisins or sultanas but I did have some dark chocolate chips so I decided to use those instead. These are very easy to make and very tasty, especially with the chocolate in them, although I am sure the raisins would be good too. They were a bit sweet though. I think that 220g of brown sugar was way too much. Probably 170g or 180g would be plenty. 

Oatmeal & Raisin Cookies

Makes 30 (I got 36) 

  • 150g unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 firmly packed cup (220g) brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp baking powder 
  • 1 cup (150g) plain flour
  • 200g rolled oats
  • 1 cup (190g) raisins 
  • Preheat oven to 180 C and line 2 large trays with baking paper. 
  • Beat butter and sugar until thick and pale. 
  • Add vanilla and egg and beat until combined. 
  • Add flour, baking powder and a pinch of salt and beat slowly until combined. 
  • Stir in oats and raisins. 
  • Roll tablespoons of dough into balls and place on trays, flattening slightly. 
  • Bake for 12 - 15 minutes or until golden.