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    Monday, August 22, 2016

    Lamb Burgers with Orange Salsa - Something Different for the Kids

    Once again came across this recipe on the net
    Better Recipes submitted by dank26660
    Perfect for a change for the kids
    They loved them, made some home made chips
    Just like a bought one
    The orange Salsa mad an interesting change from ketchup
    I topped them with avocado, for extra taste and nutrients
    You will see, there is a small amount of apple juice required, in the Salsa
    If you don't have any Apple juice on hand
    Just grate an apple and squeeze the juice out
    The grated apple can them be used for an apple pie
    No waste here!!!
    Check out the recipe for the apple pies here 

    Serves: 4

    4 Hamburger Buns

    1 lb Ground Lamb
    3 cloves Garlic, minced
    ½ tsp Cayenne Pepper
    ¼ cup Scallions, chopped
    ¼ cup Fresh Basil, chopped
    1 Tbs Sea Salt
    Pepper, to taste

    2 Large Oranges, peeled and cut into chunks
    1 Tomato, seeded and diced
    ½ cup Minced Red Onion
    1 Tbsp Apple Juice
    1 tsp Orange Zest
    ¼ Jalapeno Pepper Minced
    ½ tsp Grated Ginger Root
    1 Pinch Salt
    1 Tbsp Fresh Cilantro

    To serve
    Sea Salt and freshly ground black pepper

    In a large bowl, mix the lamb, garlic, cayenne pepper, scallions, basil, salt and pepper.
    Allow to marinate for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator.

    Take the mixture and make them into patties of desired size.
    Grill on medium heat for about 5-6 minutes each side or until done.


    In a food processor combine all salsa ingredients and blend until smooth.

    Lightly toast the Hamburger Buns
    Smooth over some mayo
    Place the cooked patty on top
    Then the Salsa, some Avocado, salt and pepper
     Whack on the top bun

    Voila dinner is served
    Chips on the side

    Sunday, August 21, 2016

    Take One Rotisserie Chicken and a Pile of Fresh Vegetables

    I'm always looking for dishes for the kids and also for a friend that is having to eat soft food

    I found yet another chicken dish that I wanted to make
    Off the Better Recipes site
    Submitted by Bree De

    Chicken and Cheese Bake

    The chicken recipe suggested using a rotisserie chicken from the supermarket
    Good idea
    So with just one rotisserie chicken
    A bunch of vegetables
    And some of the usual suspects, that you find in your fridge and pantry
    Using the waste not, want not theory
    3 Delicious Dishes including a soup with a surprise ingredient
    I made some changes to the recipe for the Chicken dish
    First I didn't want to use canned soup so I made my own
    But please use bought soup if you wish
    However...It worked
    Whenever I have leftover bread I turn it into breadcrumbs
    Just pop into plastic bag and freeze
    So useful

    3 cup chopped, cooked rotisserie chicken
    1 cup Grated Cheddar Cheese
    1 cup Sour Cream
    1 cup Mayonnaise
    1 head Broccoli cut into florets and blanch

    1 cup Cream of Mushroom Soup

    For Topping
    Croutons sautéed in olive oil till just starting to get golden
    Sprinkle with a little sea salt
    Or if you'd rather...Breadcrumbs whatever you have on hand
    I really like the croutons best. It was a great crunch
    Preheat the over to 175C and lightly grease a Gratin dish.
    In a bowl, add the chicken, broccoli, cheese, sour cream, mayo and mushroom soup.
    Mix all the ingredients well

    Place in gratin dish and top with Croutons or Breadcrumbs
    Bake uncovered for 30-35 minutes until bubbly and slightly brown on top.
    I served it with some green peas
    Perfect match

    The other dish I devised was a Vegetable Bake

    Plus the soup
    Pumpkin, Carrot and Cantaloupe in Chicken Stock
    Loved it
    First I needed to cook the vegetables
    I blanched the  broccoli in salted water, drained it
    Kept the water and cooked the carrot and pumpkin till just tender
    Drained and reserved the water
    Base for soup of course

    Once I had shredded the chicken the bones went into
    The vegetable water with a tablespoon of Vegeta Chicken Stock, for extra seasoning
    Plus a bay leaf
    Bring back to boil and simmer for 30 minutes
    Strain through wet paper towel in a sieve
    Beautiful Stock

    So for the Spicy Vegetable Bake
    1 head broccoli cut into florets
    2 carrots sliced
    1/2 buttercup squash pumpkin
    1 onion peeled and roughly chopped
    2 sticks of celery chopped
    100 gms butter
    1/2 cup flour
    Sea salt and freshly found black pepper
    1 cup chicken stock
    2 cups whole milk
    1 tsp Sriracha sauce more if you want it

    Grated cheese

    Blanch the broccoli florets in boiling salted water
    I also use the stalk just peel it and cut into batons
    Put the stalks in first for about 3 minutes
    Add the florets just blanch for another 2 minutes
    Drain, reserve water and cool quickly under a little cold water
    To keep the colour

    Add the carrots and pumpkin to the water and
    Cool till just fork tender
    Reserve the water

    In another pan melt the butter
    Add the onions, season with salt and pepper, cook till tender
    Add celery cook another couple of minutes
    Add flour
    Cook for about 3 minutes to cook out the raw flour taste
    Add hot chicken stock
    Keep stirring till it starts to thicken
    Add 1 cup milk
    Keep stirring
    Add more milk as needed
    Not too thick just want some substance
    Simmer stirring often
    Set aside
    Arrange vegetables in dish
    Smother with Onion Sauce
     Cover with grated cheese

    This can now go into the freezer
    Or if you want to cook straight away
    Into 180C oven for 20-30 minutes

    For the Soup
    Pumpkin, carrot and rock melon
    Peel the pumpkin and chop
    Chop the carrot
    Remove skin from Cantaloupe and chop
    Add all to chicken stock

    Simmer for about 30 minutes
    Whiz in a blender
    And serve, with my famous  Corn Muffins of course

    Friday, August 19, 2016

    All Year Round Salad - Dairy Free - Gluten Free

    My daughter, has just had to spend 36 hours in hospital, in Isolation
    She is currently on a dairy free, wheat free diary to sort out some allergy problems

    The hospital food which is actually satisfactory, for normal diets
    Didn't work well for her
    So, Meals on wheels went into action
    Even did the delivery, via the bus, en route to lunch
    All on the taxpayer
    Oh the taxpayer didn't pay for the food, so a bonus for the taxpayer ha ha
    I made 2 different salads
    Originally using what I had in the fridge
    I devised a salad which I would repeat again and again
    The sweetness of the melon with the peppery flavour of the salami
    A match must have been made in heaven methinks
    So so popular with the patient

    This is the amounts I used for 1 patient
    1 med Grated carrot
    1/2 Red pepper chopped
    1/2 yellow pepper chopped
    The green part of the spring onion
    1/4 peeled and chopped rock melon
    4 slices of. Pepperoni salami  sliced
    2-3 tabs French dressing

    Throw all these ingredients into a container
    Toss well

    1/2 cup lightly toasted and salted cashews
    Add the cashews on the top
    Mix them in just before eating to keep them crisp

    And then a simple Potato Salad
    1 large potato peeled, chopped and cooked in boiling salted water till just tender
    1 tbs French dressing
    2 hard boiled eggs
    Peeled and chopped roughly
    2 gherkins
    1 spring onion chopped
    2 tbs Mayonnaise

    When the potatoes are cooked
    Drain, toss with the French dressing

    Put the Mayo in a bowl
    Add the gherkins, spring onions and egg
    Toss around lightly

    When the potatoes are cool, add to the bowl
    Mix well gently
    Taste, add salt and pepper if needed
    New fashion wear for Food Delivery
    Highlight of My Day
    By the way
    Patient now discharged and germ free

    Tuesday, August 16, 2016

    Runza Rolls/Bierocks - Perfect for School Lunches

    I got inspired with this idea from
    Loanne Chiu off the Better Recipes Site

    I’ve really wanted to make these little filled bread rolls, since I saw this recipe,
    Those Eastern Europeans certainly know how to make tasty delights
    Bite into the roll and there is a fabulous filling of mince and vege
    Like a pie but probably healthier
    I did quite a lot of research and most of the American recipes use a Frozen Bread Roll
    brand not available in New Zealand.
    I like to make my own bread and it is very easy
    So In the end I really liked Loanne's recipe for the enriched bread
    No Butter, Oil instead, no Sugar or Milk but but Sweetened Condensed Milk
    Freeze for school lunches
    Just pop onto a 170C degree oven and cook for about 15 minutes
    The kids will get a fresh roll for their lunch
    This made 16 rolls

    First make the filling
    1 tablespoon Olive oil
    250 gms Ground Beef
    1 large onions peeled and chopped
    1 tablespoon grated Garlic Cloves
    2 cups Shredded Cabbage (or Store-bought Coleslaw Mix)
    1 tsp Sea Salt
    1½ tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper
    1 tablespoon white wine vinegar

    Heat the oil in a 12-inch frying pan until hot.
    Cook beef until colour is no longer pink.
    Season with Salt and pepper
    Add onions and cook until limp.
    Add cabbage and garlic 
    Cook till cabbage softened
    Add vinegar
    Taste and add more salt and pepper if you need it 

    Let cool and set aside

    The Bread
    1 cup Warm Water
    1/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
    3 Tbs Olive Oil
    2 Large Eggs
    3½ cups Bread Flour, plus ¼ cup flour for sprinkling
    1 tsp Sea Salt
    2½ tsp (1 Pkt.) Active Dry Yeast

    1 extra egg beaten, for egg wash

    Her instructions are for a bread machine, I am using my food processor
    If you want to use the bread machine, just follow the manufacturer’s instructions
    The remove the uncooked dough and proceed with making the rolls
    But if you want to use the Food Processor, go ahead

    So, place room temp condensed milk, warm water, olive oil in a bowl
    Sprinkle yeast over the top
    Let the yeast activate
    Beat eggs
    Meanwhile add flour and salt to the food processor
    Add all wet ingredients into flour
    Run on low speed till dough forms
    Turn out onto a floured bench and knead
    It is quite a wet dough, and takes about 5 - 8 minutes to get into shape
    Don't add too much flour just work the dough
    Place into an oiled bowl to rise
    Turn over once to make sure it is all oiled
     Cover and leave for about an hour
    Turn out onto a floured bench
    Cut in half and roll 1 half into a sausage
    Cut into 8 pieces
    On a floured bench roll each piece into a circle
    About 100 mm
    Put a tablespoon of filling in the middle
    Pinch edges together and place twist side down
    on a tray lined with baking paper
    Turn oven onto 170C
    Cover with a tea towel and let rise another 20 minutes

    Brush with egg wash and cook till golden brown
    15-20 minutes
    I completed cooking one tray and immediately ate 2 for lunch
    So so delicious

     BUT the second tray I decided to prepare for the freezer
    Just cook for 10 minutes
    Into the freezer in a tray to free flow freeze
    Freeze and place into a plastic storage bag

    Sunday, August 14, 2016

    Hurray We Have Arrived in Croatia

    After some wonderful time in France, great fun in Paris with the Taymacs
    Lunch at Musee D'Or

    Then onto Le Mans, where we stayed in a picturesque Cottage owned by our friend Annie
    So beautiful

    After a big last night at La Rochelle, our start to the boat trip was first….a mad dash to Le Mans for Le TGV. (It seemed that we were so slow to get ready) and then poor Annie our fabulous Chauffeur and Hostess, had to drive like the clappers to get us there…it worked, there was plenty of time.
    The French are very efficient and it is very easy to find your coach. The TGV’s are very long and you don’t want to be at the wrong end, as happened to us in Amsterdam.

    So, you find your coach number on the electronic board, and there you stay.
    Sure enough the train pulls up right there. This time it was easy to find room for the luggage and off to CDG Aerogare.
    A few hassles with our tickets but sorted reasonably quickly, and we finally got to our aircraft with only just enough time.
    Forgot how many people have to pass through immigration and then security…first class, or not…too bad.
    Dale, of course, thinks he is special and tries to get to front of queues leaving me to go around the snake. I suppose someone has to do it and it seems to be me. Dale in his haziness had forgotten to empty his water bottle….and there was no receptacle for liquids, so he was getting pretty stressed by the time we found our gate. We made it.
    Flight to Zagreb about 1 hour 50, they served a light meal and wine etc. Not too bad. Off and through Customs and change money. Kuna is the currency there is some Euro use but most like the local dolla!
    Hey found a white elephant… There is a Diners Club Lounge in Zagreb. I didn’t think anyone used Diners anymore. I was going to take a shot, but by the time I had been to the toilet, changed money etc… my traveling companion was getting grumpier by the minute. Not helped I think by the large amount of wine he had consumed with Brian the previous night (more about that in another post).
    So I left that and we went to board.
    It was sunny and warm only a 30 minutes fight to Split
    and a nice Taxi Driver and finally Domus Maritima, our little hotel in Trogir.
    n.b. had my first stinky garlic breath and BO during this trip, but there has been no more thank God.
    Laurian and Geoff greeted us. She had organised the accommodation and we are much pleased.

    Right on the waterfront which is a Marina, 100 metre walk to the bridge and straight into the old town. So pretty. Full of restaurants and bars all in meandering streets, just one charming alley after another, you can see how people got lost in the old days. A Maze.

    Trogir across to the Old Town...If you squint it could almost be Gulf Harbour!!!
    Our hotel had a lovely Cabana, for the guests to utilize, so we unpacked and joined Geoff & Laurian for a nice cold beer, whilst we set out our plan for the night.

    We wandered into town, most places have their menus outside. Same food everywhere. Italian based.
    Laurian and I had scampi and the boys Spag Bol., all washed down with House rough red. Even though we were stuffed we drank another bottle of red in the cabana before retiring. I was having mad dreams and woke at 1am took a sleeping pill and slept thru till 7.30.Of course now I have Le Coff and it is driving me and everyone else mad.
    Well we may have lost Mr Grumpy as Mary H said “he has smelt the sea and it worked.” Hooray.
    He got early and got us a hire car.
    We had a nice little breakfast, juice, ham cheese and bread, scrambled eggs, coffee, all for 7E each not bad.
    So we drove into Split, like most European cities, great mixture of old and new.
    Loved this boadwalk
    In this case Split is very old. Charming. The driving was interesting from mon mari…this developed a very front seat, back street driver (moi). It was scary. I gasped and complained a lot as we narrowly escaped hitting parked vehicles on my side of the car in fact the wing mirror did nab one.
    Poor G & L, would have been rolling their eyes in wonderment at this nagging slattern, if they were able to keep them open, but I think they were tightly closed from sheer fright. But we made it.
    Had lunch, salad, fresh but not brilliant.
    Found the VIP Vodafone shop and got me a pre-paid Vodem stick for local use.
    So back to Hotel, got the emails, changed, then joined the others for a wine in the Cabana, before dining.
    Went to a restaurant that had taken our fancy the night before. Got a sweet little waiter, G always trying the get us a discount. Waiter a little confused but laughing.
    Food was good. I had Pizza, D lasagne. L Risotto and G steak and frites. All enjoyed our food. We finally got a freebie, the staff asked if we would move to fit in some other people and recompensed us with Grappa for the boys and some kinda banana liqueur for the ladies.
     After the 2nd Grappa it was home time.
     Ladies went straight to bed. Chaps The Cabana. And it is just as well they did. As they sat there, some pissed men arrived and one was having difficulties…he fell. Old Sir Galahad Geoff went to help and picked him up and helped him onto his boat.
    According to Dale the guy was a very pissed German who was obviously gay and was trying to procure G onto the boat, full of other mad, gay, Czech people…this was a dastardly plan to sail off with Geoff. But G escaped and then Dale went to bed.
    This is the story I was told by Dale on his very loud return to our room.
    In the morning I gathered, that the only true bit , was the German was pissed and fell over and G assisted.
    But Geoff did stay up and get ensconced with 2 spies 1 UK and 1 French.
    Yeah right!!! They talked till 3am.
    Do we really leave these two together for too long?

    Saturday morning
    Boys unwell - earlyish start, market shopping for girls, and take the baggage to the boat for the boys. We got lots of lovely fruit and vege. Then Supermarche. Interestingly enough Croatia is not part of the EU, so there is not a lot of recognisable products, as you would get in France etc.
    Took us a bit of time to buy the goods we needed. We did well.
    Back to the boat, the Good Ship Viktoria, had a beer, so hot. Meanwhile the storm clouds were gathering, not to be deterred, the boys were releasing the lines when one of the Charter people came down. “Stop you must not go out. Big storm coming.”
    It had been so sunny and hot just 30 minutes previously. So reluctantly
    They tied up again. Just in time. It blew big time.
    Good news, was it gave us time to find out problems on the boat.
    There were a few. Battery rapidly draining. Shore power not working, couldn’t get electric head to flush…couldn’t get oven to work, no matches, just a few things, but fairly important. The Charter people are very helpful unlike “The Moorings” in Tonga and our problems were all fixed. So it was lucky, we could first, have been stuck in major storm and second, with fairly important parts not operating.
    So gave us time to catch up with Larry, who with Debbie and Ashley have arrived for their summer sojourn, on their boat kept permanently here, in Split Kastella Marina. It was wine time. Lots of good info from Larry and Debbie
    Had steak and vege dinner then bed.
    It was really raining hard, we thought we might even be stuck for several days.
    Morning came, rain went, sun came out. It’s gorgeous. We shopped for extras that we had forgotten the day before, and back to boat, stowed and off we went. A great 16 knot breeze, eased sheets, gently sailing off to who knows where, wine in hand.
    Pretty good, so far By the way Dale has the language sussed.

    Thank you - Hvala pronounced Gwala...Dale says Koala, so there ya go. Never have any problems in a strange and foreign land with Dale around