Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Turkey Patties

Number of People: 4
500g turkey mince
1 spring onion
handful of coriander
1 tblsp sweet chilli sauce
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1 slice wholemeal bread
1 egg
1 tsp sesame oil

Place bread in TM31 grate 10seconds at speed 8, remove and set aside
Chop spring onion and coriander for 4 seconds on speed 7
Add all ingredients to bowl (bread too) and mix 2 minutes at speed 2
Turn out and form into 8 balls

Fry until golden

These are worth 3 Weight Watcher Pro Points if they are dry fried

Originally published in 2011 at Forum Thermomix I don't have any photos but thought you might like to try them anyway

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Orange buttercream frosting


I made another orange cake and decided to try a Thermomix frosting for it so...

I took the peel of one orange, and 500g icing sugar and blitzed it for 8 seconds at speed 9. Give it longer of you want a really smooth frosting for piping, I didn't, I want to see little specks of real orange zinginess.

Add 100g unsalted butter, mix 20 sec speed 7

Add 25ml milk, 10 ml vanilla, mix 10 sec speed 7

Insert butterfly and mix 3 mins at speed 3


Refridgerate 10-15 mins before using ( I put mine in the fridge in the TM bowl and whizzed it again for 5 secs after thickening)

Madonna's roast vegetables

Here is my friend Madonna's lovely recipe (originally published online here but I have confirmed the corrections with her)

Your pick of veggies that are good roasted - mine are:
Potato, Sweet Potato, zucchini, cherry tomato, red capsicum, red onion, corn cobs (cut into 2cm wide slices)
You can also put in eggplant, whole mushrooms, whole green beans, a can of chickpeas - use your imagination!

Cut the veggies into big bite sized pieces, place into a baking dish sprayed with oil, lined with baking paper or a bbq/baking mat. Put the longer-cooking veggies in first (eg potato, sweet potato, corn) and add other veggies at intervals depending on how long they take to cook. Spray each lot of veggies as you add them to the dish. 

Today I chose purple carrots and sweet potato. I used one of my Chefs Toolbox baking mats.
amazing colour in these heirloom carrots

I baked the hard veg for about half an hour at 160 deg C. Then added cherry tomatoes, zucchini and capsicum.

When cooked, mix through dressing:
1 tablespoon strong honey,
1 teaspoon seeded mustard,
1/2 tablespoon olive oil and
1/2 - 1 tablespoon lemon juice, to taste.
Add ground salt and black pepper if desired. 

I had a helper mix this up for me.

This quantity of dressing is enough for veggies for about 4 people, adjust quantities of you're feeding a horde.

Goes really nicely with bbq meats, I also like to stir through baby spinach with the dressing and let the heat of the other veggies wilt it.

This is 2 ProPoints each if you use it to serve 4.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Monday, July 23, 2012

Devilish fragrant chicken curry

If you don't have the Thermomix Devil of a cookbook well you should. Just go buy it right now. Every dollar spent goes toward safe habitats for Tasmanian devils who are not infected with the horrendous cancer that is threatening to make them extinct. For more information check out the Devil Island Project.
Anyway we had the pleasure of attending a cooking class with Fiona Hoskin on Friday night and sampling this curry so I thought I would give it a try.
After a rough start when I discovered I needed fenugreek seeds not leaves, which necessitated a trip to the Oriental food store and caused me to buy delicious things to use later... I followed the recipe in the book but added a couple of extra tomatoes and doubled the chicken.

I am so glad I did because that is a LOT of sauce, and you can't just fill up on sauce and rice if you are counting points.
While it was cooking I went and cut some mint and pulled out my trusty stick blender. I know the TM does everything the stick blender can do (better, stronger, faster) but I can't afford a second machine and often mine is busy. Besides my stick blender is so pretty I couldn't let it go. If the Thermomix put out limited edition red machines it would sell like crazy.
So while the curry cooked I made a mint chutney.

Use a bunch of mint, a spring onion, a shake of tabasco, 3 tablespoons greek yoghurt and a generous squeeze of lime juice. This is just so beautiful - to taste as well as look at. And it cools your mouth for hot curries (this one isn't hot by the way)

So after only about half an hour at home I have a lovely curry made from scratch. I needed to cook rice for the crowd, but as the recipe includes coconut cream there were really no points left to spare for rice for Taff and I so it was back to the old cauliflower trick.
Which meant this delicious plate full came in at only 10 ProPoints so we had some roti bread too!
this plate does not contain rice

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Freeform apple tart

This recipe started when Taff wanted to buy a chunky Kit Kat at the stupid market. Just let me check the points on my trusty WW app says I. Eleven! Eleven points on a Nestle product. That means we would compromise our budget, ethical stance and WW goal. "I am sure we can do better than that" says moi (secretly aware of Taff's fetish for all things involving cooked apple)

So we armed ourselves with a packet of short crust pastry and came home to create

First rule of weight reduction dishes involving pastry:
 You don't actually need pastry on the top and the bottom!

This halves the buttery goodness while still satisfying the pastry craving.

So I put that pastry sheet in the bottom of a pyrex pie dish and peeled and sliced four granny smith apples. I like apples that hold their shape once they are cooked and red apples generally go to mush, so I used Granny Smith apples.

Then I wanted some sweetness and spice so I sprinkled on 30 mls of real maple syrup (not the pretend stuff) and 4 teaspoons of dark brown sugar mixed with 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves and 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon.

At this point I considered trimming the pastry to make a neat tart, nut as I had already added up all the ingredients on the Weight Watchers recipe builder and found that this would only be 6 ProPoints a serve I figured we could enjoy ALL the pastry not lose some of it to trimming.
So at this point it became a free form tart - just fold or push the pastry in until it looks like this:
I put it in the oven at 160 deg for about an hour. It didn't over brown but the apples weren't cooked as much as I would have liked - I am glad they were slices not chunks. So I blitzed it in the microwave for 2 minutes which did the trick.
Here is the finished product
Next time I think I will blitz the apples for 2 minutes before filling the case, and toss in the filling rather than sprinkling it on top. But apart from that - add a dollop of good quality Greek yoghurt and dig in!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Chinese congee

Looking for comfort food tonight in our unheated tropical home - but we are not real hungry which screams "Soup!" to me. 
I pulled out my Chinese cooking class notes (circa 1978) and thought the Thermomix could do the work for me
I just made a fresh batch of vegie stock from the EDC but you can use fresh made stock or good quality stock cubes for this dish

Start with 3/4 cup of rice, 2 tablespoons stock paste, and 4 cups of water. Insert butterfly. Cook 20 minutes 100 deg, reverse speed soft.

It should look like this:

Add a teaspoon of soy sauce and a splash of sesame oil. Cook another 7-10 minutes 100 deg reverse speed soft. Keep an eye on it as you can overcook at this stage - you are looking for a porridge consistency, not a risotto. Add water or reduce cooking time if you need to.
please excuse the steam on the lens
While it cooks chop your vegies - I chose chives and lettuce (baby cos) tonight and any protein you are adding. You can put shredded chicken or chinese pork, or make a wee omelette and slice it up. Tonight I used a boiled egg. Because it was there.

Plate up - congee in the bottom, ther rest on the top. Drizzle with soy sauce and sprinkle with some white pepper. And enjoy!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Capsicum relish dip

This dip is so delicious and so easy

Back in 2002 I won reader recipe of the month for this in Super Food Ideas magazine but I don't think this recipe is on the archive at taste.com.au so its time to get it out there again.
If you find it send me a link!
1 cup dark brown sugar
1 cup malt vinegar
2 tins capsicum (or two fresh)
1 tablespoon chopped ginger
1 tablespoon chopped garlic

I can't even be fagged chopping the ginger and garlic in the thermie for this one. I just stick a spoon in the jar.
Put it all in a saucepan and bring to the boil

Simmer for 45 minutes
It will look like this while it is cooking

When it is done the capsicum is all brown and unrecognisable. Take it off and allow to cool for about ten minutes then pour into a jar.

 It should have reduced to this much.
It will thicken as it cools.

Serve over Philly cheese. Low fat, full fat, whatever you like. Its like those expensive sweet chilli dips you buy and turn upside down, but much nicer and I think it has better flavour. It looks fantastic served in a rustic fashion in a bowl with the Philly all broken up but can also be an immaculate jewel in the centre of a plain white plate. Put it in the fridge - it keeps for weeks.
This is enough for four dipping adventures. 
No points calculation because only insane people try to track dip at the prep stage. 

Sunday, July 15, 2012

WW Lamb and vegetable hot pot with herb dumplings

Again today is a lazy, cold day so I was looking for a hearty meal that didn't require much effort. We chose the recipe here which is also in the Cook Hearty book, but I Thermomixed it up.

I am so good at photographing steam!

So the initial steps were much the same, brown the lamb, add the vegetables and thyme. I wasn't too fussy with the veg quantities but I ddn't like the idea of squeezing it into a 2 litre pot so I made it in the CT saute pan.

In hindsight I would probably double the sauce to accommodate the pot and any side dishes. I added a cup of extra water before putting the dumplings in but we are a whole family of gravy lovers.

Add the liquid - I substituted Thermomix vegetable stock for the chicken stock.

Then I chopped the herbs in the TM and just tossed in the butter and flour for 5 seconds at speed 8. No need for long minutes spent rubbing the butter and flour together.

Add the liquid and in 5 seconds more (at speed 5) the dough is done. How about that? Dumpling dough in less than one minute!

This is what it looked like coming out of the oven - as it was a bit dry I added a cup of water. I may have left it in too long - I have a very efficient oven and we did take the dogs to the park.

After I added the water it looked better

And here it is with the dumpling dough on top

I served it with steamed cabbage, and warmed up vegetables from last night's meal (they only needed 5 minutes in a tray in the oven to reheat)

The recipe says 13 points but we fed 6 not 4 so I think maybe 10 or 11 WW ProPoints per serve


We had strawberries and Salted Caramel sauce. No idea how many points but it was heavenly and at least one serve of fruit.

Details of the sauce here

What else do you suggest we do with it?

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Lamb shanks and roasted vegetables

Lazy Saturday afternoon with music on shuffle and we wanted food that was filling and delicious but does not need fussing over. So we have done our take on two Weight Watchers recipes - balsamic lamb shanks which are in the WW Cook Hearty book as well as online here

Firstly I don't like extra washing up. So the part about brown first then transfer to an oven proof dish. We won't do that will we? That's a 100% increase in effort for no reward. Who wants that?

Saute pan
Take your wonderful Como Saute Pan from Chefs toolbox and brown the lamb shanks while you cut up the vegetables. Or better yet while someone else cuts them up. Then you can just pop in, take a photo and blog away!

Add the vegetables. We didn't use one carrot we used a whole packet of the Chantenay carrots Coles is selling at the moment - very sweet, no need to peel and easy to top and tail the whole kaboodle.

Here is what it looked like just before we chucked all the rest of the ingredients in. And this pan is great because you can choose to put it in the oven or leave it on the stove over the lowest possible flame. If I had done this 6 hours ago it would be in the slow cooker but I didn't so it isn't. Tonight we are doing it on the stove top.

And vegetables. Our Weight Watchers meeting his morning was all about increasing the variety and number of vegetables and I think this recipe is a great start. Of course I don't actually follow it (the quantities on the website are a bit dodgy - one mushroom and one cherry tomato? what's that about?) .
Here is what we are having tonight:

Pumpkin - half a butternut squash
Eggplant - from our garden
Purple sweet potato
Zucchini - two because I am leaving out the mushrooms
Cherry tomatoes - one punnet
Capsicum - one red 
Red Onion - one

Cut them all up small, and decide what you are cooking them on. I use my two oldest crappiest baking trays with my lovely CT baking sheets Cut everything up small except the tomaoes - I just halved them. I chopped the garlic with the rosemary and sprinkled that lovely fragrant mess on top at the end. This is a TON of veg for two people and one fussy boy (no big boys here tonight) but it is really delicious cold as well and makes a great quick lunch.

We don't do the rocket either - just double the baby spinach. And 240g of chick peas? What's that about? All the cans in my cupboard have 400g so that's what I will be dumping on top.

So after 30 - 40 minutes you pull it all out of the oven, throw the chick peas and feta on top (by the way we have a serious Danish feta habit to support in this household) Bake 5 more minutes and you get this:

Throw the baby spinach into a BIG salad bowl and dump everything else on top. Make sure the juice goes in as well as all the vegetables. Squeeze the juice of a lemon over the whole lot.

The heat will wilt the spinach and this is your opportunity to mix it up a bit.

Meanwhile serve up the lamb shanks. Enjoy. Save the excess veg for healthy lunches over the next few days.

Only 11 ProPoints per serve - comfort food done right!