Category Archives: Kitchen

Cheap-As Tuesday: Curried Sausages

via caravan handmade

A daggy oldie, but a goodie in my book. Curried sausages find their way to our plates at least once a month during the cooler season.

You’ll need:


8+ thin sausages (this is enough for Sparky and I plus leftovers)
1-2 onions, sliced
1+ cup frozen veges (peas, carrot, corn works well)
1 tbsp butter
plain flour
milk
curry powder
salt + pepper
steamed basmati/brown rice to serve

1. Pop your sausages into a saucepan of cold water, bring to the boil until cooked through (10 minutes or so).

2. Remove from saucepan, but keep the cooking water aside for later. Slice sausages into 1-2cm lengths, removing sausage casing if you want.

3. Heat butter in a hot frying pan then cook the onion till soft. Add approx 2 dessertspoons of flour and mix through the onion mixture, then add your curry powder to taste (we use at least one heaped teaspoon, which gives a nice spiciness). Combine well and add approx 1/2 cup cooking water, stirring well to remove any lumps. Add more as needed to create a thick sauce.

4. Add your sausages to the pan, mixing well. Then add approx 1/2 cup milk, combining well.

5. Let this simmer for a few minutes, adding more water/milk as needed. Once the sauce has thickened slightly, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

6. Add your veges, simmer for five minutes more, season to taste and serve with rice.

* This recipe is one I’ve made up myself, with bits taken from other recipes and experimentation. Sorry I can’t be more accurate with the measurements and time. It’s fairly hard to muck up though, and you can adjust as you go.

Cheap-As Tuesday: Tuna and Vege Pie

My Meat-Free Monday resources are slowly drying up, and I’m needing to find some more quick, cheap and easy meat-free options. In the meantime though, I though I’d start posting some of my favourite thrifty meals, as this is where I come into my own. Sorry, Margaret Fulton, but I can feed my family for less than that tenner in your hand!

Tonight’s dinner is actually a “kids” dinner, but Sparky and I dig it too, so it’s win-win!
You’ll need:

2 sheets frozen puff pastry, thawed
large tin tuna, flaked and drained
1+ cup of grated cheese
1 onion, finely diced 
1+ cups frozen veges (I use peas, carrots and corn)
OR tin corn kernels, drained
1 egg, lightly beaten
1. Combine tuna, onion, veges and cheese in a bowl.
2. Put one sheet of pastry in the bottom of a greased baking dish, and fill with the tuna mix.
3. Season if you’d like, then place the second sheet of pastry over the top, pinching/tucking it into the side of the dish, to get a fairly good seal.
4. Brush the pastry with the beaten egg and put into a preheated oven (200C) for around 25 minutes or until the pastry is golden and flaky and the filling is bubbling away.
We have ours with steamed veges, but it would be yummo with homemade chips, baked sweet potato or salad too.

Coconutty Shuku Shuku

I was looking for a little sweet treat the other day, and sadly, there was nothing to be found. So I dug through my cookbooks and found this super simple little number in frankie’s Sweet Treats.
If you have five minutes (plus 20 for baking) and want a little something-something that’s sweet but not too bad for you, then give these little gems a go: Coconutty Shuku Shuku!
You’ll need:

1 cup desiccated cocnut
1/4 cup caster sugar
3 egg yolks
self-raising flour (for rolling)
icing sugar (for rolling)
1. Mix the coconut, caster sugar and egg yolks together until they form a firm, sticky dough.
2. Using your hands, roll teaspoonfuls of the mixture into little balls, roll through the flour and pop on a lined baking tray.
3. Put the tray into a preheated oven (175C) and bake for around 15-20 minutes, until slightly golden and firm.
4. Allow to cool and then roll through the icing sugar.
5. Eat about 8 with your morning coffee!
They taste a little bit like macaroons and I think I love them.

In Season: June’s Fruit and Veges

image via Allotment UK

Eating in season means you’re more likely to be eating Australian-grown produce, which is greener and healthier (not as many preservative sprays used/cold storage/synthetic ripening etc). Even better would be to buy locally grown, spray free produce (check your local area for road-side or farm-based stores – they’re more likely to have quality, spray-free produce). And even better would be to buy locally grown, organic produce, but in our case at least, cash is an issue.

I thought it might be helpful to provide a list each month of the fruit and veges that are currently in season (in Australia).

Fruit


apples (bonza, braeburn, fuji, gala, golden delicious, granny smith, jonagold, jonathan, lady williams, mutso, pink lady, red delicious, snow, sundowner) 
custard apple
grapefruit
kiwifruit
lemons
limes
mandarin
nashi
oranges
pears (beurre bosc, josephine, packham) 
persimmon
pomelo
quince
rhubarb
Veges


asian greens
avocados (fuerte, sharwill) 
beetroot
broccoli
brussels sprout
cabbage
carrots
cauliflower
celeriac
celery
fennel
garlic
ginger
horseradish
jerusalem artichokes
kale
kohlrabi
leeks
okra
olives
onions
parsnip
peas
potato
pumpkin
shallot
silverbeet
spinach
swede
sweet potato
turnip
witlof

Admittedly, I’m really not very good at cooking by season – it’s hard enough figuring out what to cook as it is – but I’m really trying to make the best use of seasonal fruit and veges as possible. I’ve got a delicious, comforting, sweet and yum dessert recipe I’ll post a bit later on, that might help you out when looking for in-season options this winter.

Meat-Free Monday: Roast Veges, Couscous + Feta

Another Meat-Free Monday meal that I love. It’s super easy, so deliciously tasty and helps you use up whatever veges you have left rolling around in the crisper.

I guess you could replace the couscous with brown rice or quinoa (I know both are better for you) but on a cold, rainy night like tonight, the hearty, buttery goodness of couscous rocks my socks.

You’ll need:

a packet of couscous
olive oil
butter
sweet potato
pumpkin
carrot
zucchini
eggplant
(*in terms of veges, I always use sweet potato, but everything else is fluid – whatever you have on hand or whatever your favourites are. beetroot would probably be awesome too)
kalamata olives
feta cheese
rocket/mint/parsley

1. Cut up your veges into 1-2cm chunks and put onto a large baking tray. Drizzle generously with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and put into preheated oven (200C) for around 40 minutes. Toss after about 20 minutes.

2. Prepare your couscous as per packet instructions.

3. Pour couscous into large bowl, add the veges, olives, feta and rocket. Combine with a little lemon juice if desired.

We serve it hot, but it is really yummy as cold leftover too. This is a beautiful, comforting meal in itself, but you could add lentils or chickpeas too.