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To the kitchen – recipes from members

Here you will find a collection of recipes from some of our members, using fresh produce from the garden. Click on the arrow to see the recipe.
Summer/Autumn recipes

Pickled Cucumbers

4 large cucumbers
2 cups cider vinegar
1 tablespoon of sugar
1/2 cup hot water
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons mustard seed
some chillies if desired

Cut the unpeeled cucumbers into thin slices and put in a bowl in layers and sprinkle salt between the layers and leave overnight.
Next day rinse and drain.  Put all other ingredients into a saucepan and bring to the boil, simmer for 5 min then add cucumber slices and bring back to almost boiling.
Then quickly grab the slices with tongs and layer them into sterile jars tightly, toss in a chilly if liked and when vinegar has cooled slightly, pour into the jars and seal.

Spicey Asian cucumbers

1/4 cup rice vinegar
4 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon fish sauce
1/2 teaspoon dried or fresh red chilli(or to taste)
2 cucumbers
Whisk rice vinegar, sugar, soy sauce, fish sauce, and crushed red pepper in a bowl.
Slice cucumbers crosswise into 1/4-inch thick rounds.
Toss cucumber slices in vinegar mixture.
Cover and chill 1 hour, tossing occasionally.

Preserving basil for winter

This pungent mix of basil and garlic can be frozen ready for when you want it in winter. It’s great for sparking up winter vegetable soups or pasta with green winter vegetables.

Blend together:
1 well-packed cup of basil leaves
4 cloves of garlic – chopped
4 tablespoons of olive oil.
Store in ice cube trays in the freezer.
For soup, add one cube per person to each bowl after serving.
For pasta, mix a cube per person through cooked pasta and green vegetables (broad beans, cavolo nero or rapa are all delicious). Serve topped with grated parmesan.

Zucchini soup with preserved lemon and tarragon

Many people have a favourite recipe for zucchini soup. This is mine. The preserved lemon and tarragon add a delicious, delicate flavour.

1 large (overgrown) zucchini – roughly-chopped
potato (for thickening) – chopped
1 large onion – finely chopped
1-3 cloves of garlic – finely chopped
Good quality chicken stock (preferably homemade) – enough to cover the vegetables by about 5cm.
1 tablespoon of olive oil
¼ of a preserv ed lemon – flesh discarded and peel chopped
Handful of tarragon leaves
Salt and cracked pepper to taste

Heat oil in a large pan and sauté the onion until soft. Add garlic, zucchini, and potato and sauté for another minute or two. Add chicken stock and simmer until all vegetables are cooked. Add preserved lemon and cook for another minute. Add tarragon leaves, salt and pepper to taste. Put in blender and whizz until smooth. Serve garnished with a few tarragon leaves.

Zucchini with walnuts

This is a Syrian recipe
500gms zucchini, finely sliced
50 ml olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1-2 garlic cloves, crushed with sme saly
1 teaspoon ground allspice
75 gms walnuts, chopped
A small bunch of parsely, finely chopped

Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry theonion until soft, about 5 mins
add the zucchini and fry for about another 5 minutes
Add the crushed garlic, walnuts and allspice and continue to fry, over a low heat for 2 mins.
Remove from heat, ad the parsley and eat warm, or at room temperature with bread.

Individual yummy zucchini things

Pre fry bacon, garlic & onion (diced)
Grate & squeeze zucchini. Mix these with a little grated cheese & two eggs in a bowl.
Mix in a little self raising flour. Add salt/ pepper & a little dry chicken or veg stock powder (optional).
Spoon the mix into a muffin tray or two depending on quantities and bung in the oven for about 20 minutes or until they have risen slightly and browned on top. Yum!

Rougaille de tomate -a traditional Mauritian recipe

350g tomatoes
4 green capsicums
3 onions finely sliced
1 garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp tomato concentrate
1 pinch of powdered red chilli
10g ginger

Peel and crush tomatoes. Grate the ginger and crush garlic.
Heat oil in pan and cook onions until soft. Add ginger and garlic, then tomato concentrate and thyme. Cook a couple of minutes then add to crushed tomatoes.
Cut capsicums lengthwise and fry them in same pan till golden. Add to the crushed tomato mix. Add parsley to the mix.
Serve with fried fish.

Provencal vegetable stew (Ratatouille)

2 Large aubergines
3 medium courgettes
2 medium onions
2 red or green peppers
4 large tomatoes or a 400g tin well drained
2 cloves garlic
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh basil
Salt and fresh pepper

Cut aubergines and courgettes into 2.5cm thick slices and the aubergines in half again. Chop onions and peppers roughly. Skin tomatoes and chop roughly.
Sauté onions and garlic in olive oil; add peppers, courgettes and aubergine, basil and salt and pepper. Simmer very gently covered for 30mins.
Add tomato flesh and cook for a further 15 mins with the lid off. Check seasoning.

Stuffed Capsicums

4 capsicums
1 large brown onion
1 clove garlic, chopped
300g beef mince
½ cup parsley
½ cup mint
400g tinned tomatoes
½ cup rice
½ cup cold water
Salt, pepper

Heat a little oil in a frypan, add diced onion, and cook until softened (about 5 minutes).
Add garlic, cook 1 minute, then add mince and cook until browned.
Add herbs, tomato, rice, cold water, and salt and pepper.
Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to low, simmer for 10-15 minutes or until sauce starts to thicken.
Remove from heat.
Remove veins and seeds from capsicums.
Cut, and reserve, top from each capsicum.
Divide mixture evenly between capsicums and place reserved top on each stuffed capsicum.
Drizzle with oil and bake at 180C for 60 minutes or until capsicums have softened and skins start to darken.
May need to place foil over capsicums while cooking.

Kale and tomato soup

Large bunch of washed kale roughly chopped
can of diced tomatoes
1-2 tbls tomato puree concentrate
1 onion
1tsp cracked pepper
2 litre hot water

Brown onion in generous amount of oil, add water,can of tomatoes,tomato conc.& pepper. Simmer for 5 mins then add kale. Cook for 8-10 mlns.
Blend roughly with stick blender or processor and garnish with Italian parsley.
Serve with sourdough bread.

Beetroot, Cannellini & Pear Dip

This comes from the ABC program ‘The Cook and the Chef’ episode 40
3 medium sized beetroot
1 cup cooked cannellini beans
1 firm pear, grated
2 teaspoons sea salt
3 tablespoons vinocotto or balsamic vinegar
Good squeeze lemon
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 sprig rosemary
1 small clove garlic, sliced
A little extra olive oil for frying
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon mint, chopped

Put beetroot into cold water in pot and cook until tender. Cool slightly & peel while they’re still a little warm -it’s easier that way, then chop roughly.
Heat a little Olive oil and quickly fry the garlic and rosemary. Add the chopped beetroot, cannellini beans, fried garlic and rosemary to a food processor, add the vinocotto. Grate the pear into the beetroot, add the lemon zest, mint and a good squeeze of lemon juice and pulse to combine as you add the olive oil. The beetroot needs to retain a very coarse texture without being too pureed.
Stir well to combine. Season with pepper.

Beetroot salad

4 beetroots
½ cup parsley, leaves picked
1 garlic clove, finely sliced
¼ cup oil
1 tablespoon sherry or red wine vinegar
¼ cup toasted walnuts

Boil beets until cooked. Peel and cut into wedges.
Heat oven to 180 degrees and place walnuts on a flat tray. Toast for 10 minutes.
Arrange in a salad bowl and add the parsley leaves, walnuts and garlic.
Sprinkle with oil and vinegar/sherry, and season.

Beetrrot and carrot salad

400g beetroot (raw)
100g carrot (raw)
¼ red onion
1 green apple
3 sprigs coriander
1 tablespoon oil
1 lemon – squeezed
120g fetta OR 200g ricotta
16 walnuts, crushed

Roughly chop beetroot, carrot, onion and apple.
Mix together with coriander, rocket, oil and lemon juice.
Add fetta/ricotta, and walnuts, just before serving.

Stuffed roasted capsicums

1 red capsicum, halved, seeds removed
½ teaspoon olive oil
80g ricotta cheese
1 small tomato, diced
1 dessertspoon chopped parsley
1 dessertspoon chopped basil
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
2 teaspoons pine nuts, toasted
Cracked pepper.

Pre-heat oven to 180C.
Rub the olive oil around the capsicums, and place on an oven tray.
Mix together the ricotta, tomato, parsley, basil, lemon rind and toasted nuts. Mix well and season with cracked pepper.
Fill the capsicums with ricotta mixture, and bake for 45 minutes.

Plum sauce

1.5kg plums, halved
1 1/2 tsp cloves
1 tsp whole allspice, ground
1 tsp black peppercorns, ground
2 1/4 cups brown sugar (or a mixture of brown and white)
2 tsp salt
1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
3 cups white-wine vinegar
1 hot chilli, seeded and chopped (optional) or 1 tsp cayenne powder

Put all the ingredients into a large non-reactive pot and bring to a boil, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Cook steadily for 20 minutes until plums have collapsed.
Pass sauce through a heavy stainless steel sieve, leaving just the pips behind, and return to rinsed-out pan. Boil steadily for a few minutes until sauce is as thick as you would like it.
For a super-smooth sauce put through a blender. Remember to only place a small quantity in the flask at a time as the steam will force the lid off and you can burn yourself. (Remember, too, that the sauce will thicken further when it is cold and it ought to be pourable.)
Pour into hot, sterilised bottles or jars, seal and label. Leave for at least a week before using.
Makes 2 litres.

Sparkling non alcoholic rhubarb ‘champagne’

875g sugar
4 cups boiling water
14 cups cold water
1 lemon, chopped
875g rhubarb stalks, chopped into 6mm pieces – red rhubarb will give a lovely pink colour to the drink
11 tablespoons vinegar

Mix together in a food-safe bucket the sugar and boiling water, and stir until sugar has dissolved.
Add the cold water and stir again.
Add the lemon, rhubarb and vinegar and stir.
Place a tea towel over the bucket and leave to stand 2 days.
Strain through a colander, then the liquid again through a fine sieve.
Pour into PET bottles to within 5cm of the top. Seal.
Leave to stand.
Julie’s notes on this recipe: I use a big stainless steel mixing bowl instead of a bucket and I try to use glass bottles when I can.  It’s really important to get a strong seal on the bottles. Like ginger beer they may explode if kept sealed for too long and need to be opened very carefully.  I open the bottles slightly after a couple of days to let a bit of fizz out, then reseal tightly.

It can be drunk after 3 days then it is very sweet and definitely not alcoholic (Rhubarb Fizz for kids).  I have read that if you keep it for longer than 2 weeks before refrigerating it will become alcoholic.  I’ve never tried that, but I expect the chances of explosion would increase.


Winter/Spring recipes

Fennel and pea salad

1 bulb fennel – thinly sliced
4 sprigs parsley – roughly torn
40 gm grated parmesan cheese
¼ cup peas blanched
Juice of 2 lemons
100ml extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
Extra parmesan cheese for grating on top of salad to serve

Place thinly sliced fennel, roughly torn parsley, grated parmesan cheese, blanched peas, salt and pepper into a bowl. Mix all ingredients together well.
In a jug mix together the lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil until combined.
Dress salad, mix well and check seasoning. Place in salad bowl and grate parmesan cheese on top to serve.
Salad should be well dressed (if to dry add some extra virgin olive oil).

Pasta with broad beans

Finely diced red onion
Garlic – crushed
2 zucchini – halved, then sliced
Broad beans – about 1 cup
Green beans – about 20, cut into 1” lengths
Pasta of your choice
Parmesan cheese

Gently fry onion and garlic for about 5 minutes – do not brown. Add zucchini, and continue to fry for a further 15 minutes.
Cook pasta according to directions. About 4 minutes before it should be ready, add the green beans to the pasta water.
About 2 minutes before pasta will be cooked, add broadbeans to the frypan.
Drain pasta and beans, combine with contents of frying pan (may need to add a little further olive oil).
Scatter shaved parmesan cheese over pasta.
Serves 2.

Silverbeet and mushroom pie

Preparation Time 10 minutes,
Cooking Time 50 minutes
2 tbs olive oil
2 onions, finely sliced
3 cloves garlic, chopped
500g mushroom cups, thickly sliced
1 bunch Silverbeet, roughly chopped
Pinch nutmeg
Salt & freshly ground black pepper
4 eggs
300ml light thickened cream
1/2 cup grated reduced fat Swiss cheese

Preheat oven to 180°C.
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over a moderate heat. Sauté the onion and garlic for 5 mins or until soft. Add the mushrooms and sauté for another 2 mins.  Add the Silverbeet, nutmeg and season. Cover the saucepan and cook until the Silverbeet wilts.
Remove from the heat, stir the Silverbeet through the mushrooms and drain any excess moisture. Transfer the Silverbeet mixture into a large 6-cup capacity baking dish.
Whisk the eggs and cream together, season and stir through the grated cheese. Pour the egg mixture over the Silverbeet mixture, swirl the egg mixture through the Silverbeet using a fork.
Bake the pie for 40 mins or until golden and set. Allow to cool slightly before slicing.

Silverbeet and Feta Bake

Silverbeet/spinach – steamed, drained and chopped
1 cup rice – cooked with 2 stock cubes
1 onion, 2 cloves garlic – chopped, fried in olive oil
2 eggs – beaten
Oregano, basil – added to pan
2 -3 sliced tomatoes
Grated cheese (some tasty or gruyere gives extra flavour)

Mix together cooked silverbeet, cooked rice, fried onion and garlic, herbs, eggs, crumbled fetta and black pepper.
Press into baking dish and top with sliced tomatoes then grated cheese.
Bake in moderate oven 30 – 40 minutes till golden brown on top.

Cauliflower and yoghurt curry

1/2 cauliflower
200g natural yoghurt
1 clove crushed garlic
2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
1 tablespoon green curry powder
1/2 tablespoon oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup water
2 teaspoons garam masala
1 tablespoon lemon or lime juice
corn flour to thicken

Break cauliflower into small pieces and trim stem. Combine yoghurt, garlic, ginger and curry paste, and mix with cauliflower. Leave for 30 minutes minimum, or overnight, in fridge.
In a non-stick pan, heat oil and gently cook onion for 3-4 minutes. Add cauliflower mixture and water, stir until boiling, and leave to simmer, covered, for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Stir in garam masala and lime or lemon juice.
Serve over rice.
Serves 2 as a main course, or would be suitable accompaniment for a curry meal.

Cream of Cauliflower Soup with Parmesan

A creamy, rich soup of sautéed cauliflower florets blended with a little cream, Dijon mustard and parmesan cheese. This recipe is based on a Neil Perry recipe.

50g olive oil
50g unsalted butter
15g peeled fresh garlic cloves, finely diced
150g peeled brown onion, diced
12g sea salt Freshly ground white pepper, to taste
800g cauliflower florets, roughly chopped
900ml fresh chicken or vegetable stock
50g single (pouring) cream
15g Dijon mustard, approximately
50g parmesan cheese, finely grated (approximately)
Heat oil and butter in heavy-based pan; add garlic, onion, salt and pepper, sauté for 10 minutes.
Add cauliflower and sweat over low heat for about 10 minutes or until florets are soft and golden (the browning of the cauliflower is essential for the flavour of this soup).
Add stock, bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered for about 15 minutes or until cauliflower is very soft.
Remove from heat, process soup until very smooth.
Return to pan, place over low heat, stir in cream.
Add mustard and cheese in batches tasting soup each time to judge whether more is needed. It depends on the strength of flavour of both products as to the amount required. Check seasoning.
Add more stock if necessary to give the desired consistency.

Spaghetti and cavolo nero with gorgonzola sauce

This is a one pot dish – less washing up!

6-8 cavolo nero leaves per person
Spaghetti (your usual amount per person)
1 desert spoon of cream per person
1 walnut sized knob of gorgonzola per person
Salt and pepper to taste

Remove centre stems from cavolo nero leaves and cut leaves into long spaghetti-like strips. (Tip: stack the leaves on top of each other, role them up like a fat cigar and then cut 0.5 cm slices across the ‘cigar’.) Place spaghetti in boiling salted water. Once spaghetti has softened into the water, add the cavolo nero strips. Drain when spaghetti is al dente and return to the pan over a very low heat. Add cream and gorgonzola and heat through until cheese has melted. Serve immediately.

Kale and egg curry- inspired by the Chettinad cooking of Tamil Nadu

1 large bunch of washed and debugged kale with fibrous ends removed.
5 hard boiled eggs
1-2 tbls favourite curry powder
1 tbls mustard seed
1 pice of cassia bark
1 tsp cracked black pepper
2 tbls thick yoghurt
1/2 L water
1 brown onion finely chopped
coraiander to garnish

Add mustard seed to hot oil,then onion and curry powder and ground pepper. When mustard seed starts to crack, add water and cassia bark.
Simmer for 5 minutes and add finely sliced kale. Cook for 8-10 minutes, add chopped eggs at the end.
Turn off heat, and stir in yoghurt.
Garnish with coriander leaves and serve with either basmati or red rice.

Cavalo Nero side dish

1 bunch Cavolo Nero, or about 700gm’s, medium sized leaves
1/3 quince peeled, cored and sliced
2 small shallots finely sliced
50g butter
1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice
20 ml extra virgin olive oil

Wash and chop Cavalo Nero and blanch for about 3 minutes, depending on age of the
Drain well and squeeze out any excess water.
In a fresh large frypan, bring butter to a nut brown colour, add extra virgin olive oil to
inhibit burning, then add shallots and quince slices until cooked.
Add lemon juice.
Add blanched Cavalo Nero to the pan, toss together and serve as a vegetable dish

Fennel, celeriac and celery soup

This comes from ABC Tasmania
2 tablespoons of butter
1 fennel bulb, outside edged cut off if it is bruised, core removed and coarsely chopped.
1 stick of celery, outside strings removed and sliced finely
1 celeriac root, peeled and chopped coarsely
1 white/brown onion, coarsely chopped
¼ cup of pastis such as Ricard (optional – it emphasizes the aniseed flavours)
800 ml of chicken/veg stock or water
Sea salt and freshly-ground white pepper
Cream to taste (approx ¼ cup)

Melt butter in a wide, heavy-bottom saucepan. Add fennel, celery, celeriac, and onion. Sauté gently until they are slightly softened, stirring all the time to ensure that it does not catch. Do not let them brown.
Pour the pastis into the pot to boil off the alcohol – then add the stock or water. Add ½ teaspoon of sea salt and a couple of grindings of white pepper.
Cook for approximately 30 minutes until all the vegetables are softened. Puree until fine in a blender or with a wand. Return to cleaned saucepan.
Add the cream and warm the soup again. Taste for seasoning and add further salt and freshly ground white pepper if needed.

Radicchio Frittata

2 to 3 radicchio heads
5 eggs
Tablespoon butter
50g parmesan
Fresh marjoram
Olive oil

Quickly fry radicchio leaves in a pan with butter (which helps to counteract bitterness of radicchio).
Allow to cool and squeeze leaves dryish. Chop radicchio leaves with a fair amount of marjoram.
Beat eggs and add parmesan and salt to taste.
Fry in some olive oil, turning frittata half way through until cooked through and golden.
If you don’t have radicchio this is also good with silverbeet leaves









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