Pere al Forno con Marsala e Cannella | Pears Baked with Marsala and Cinnamon

Beautiful raisin flavoured baked pears for wintery nights.

Aaah, the thought of these makes me feel hungry. First made in our household about 20 years ago they still feature occasionally in our kitchen, especially in winter. They are a great way to take the evening chill off of the kitchen – turn the oven on, pop in the pears and perhaps some parsnips to roast, pour the wine and put some Italian music on in the background.

Are you looking for similar dishes? Try Roasted Rosemary Pears, and an Autumn Fruit Salad.

You might like to browse our Dessert recipes, and our Pear recipes. Check out our easy Late Winter recipes.

This recipe is one of the vegetarian recipes from our first blog which was in existence from 1995 – 2005. You can browse more of those recipes in the Retro Recipes series.

Continue reading “Pere al Forno con Marsala e Cannella | Pears Baked with Marsala and Cinnamon”

Bistecche di Melanzane | Eggplant Steaks

Leftover eggplant in the fridge? Don’t quite know what to do with it? No matter what you are serving tonight, this Italian dish from Bugialli will blend. In no time at all you will be enjoying the wonderful soft texture of well cooked eggplant contrasted with the crunch of breadcrumbs. It makes a great starter with a green leaf or two, it can accompany any other dish for a a multi dish meal, or it can take centre place with a salad and chickpeas.

Eggplant will soak up whatever you soak it in. This recipe utilises this property well by marinating the eggplant before baking. Yummy! This is so good, I do hope that you try it.

Are you looking for other Eggplant dishes? Try Eggplants in a Creamy Peanut Gravy, Roasted Eggplant with a Garlic Sauce, and Eggplant, Sultanas and Pinenuts.

All of our Eggplant recipes can be browsed here, and have a look at other Bugialli recipes. Or explore our wonderful collection of Late Autumn dishes.

Also, feel free to browse other vegetarian recipes from our first blog in existence from 1995 – 2006, in our Retro Recipes series.

Continue reading “Bistecche di Melanzane | Eggplant Steaks”

Aubergines Fourrées | Baked Eggplant Stuffed with Cheese and Tomatoes

You will really enjoy this recipe. Softened eggplants are slit and fanned, and its slices interwoven with cheese, tomatoes and peppers. They are then baked on a bed of the sweetest caramelised onions, and the cheese melts. If, like me, you use mozzarella, it oozes everywhere! Cheesey Eggplants – who can resist?

If you use a cheese that holds its shape during baking it won’t form a bed of oozy cheese but rather stay in the eggplant, but we love this oozing aspect of the dish. It is perfect for Late Autumn.

It’s a French recipe, so I suggest some French wine and a green salad, for a light lunch eaten outside on a gorgeous Autumn day sitting under a gorgeously coloured tree raining leaves. Do enjoy!

Would you like more Eggplant recipes? Try Cheese and Eggplant Torte, Roasted Eggplant with a Garlic Sauce, and Persian Style Eggplant.

Browse all of our Aubergine recipes and all of our French dishes. Our Baked recipes are here. Or enjoy our Late Autumn dishes.

Feel free to browse vegetarian recipes from our first blog which was in existence from 1995 – 2006, in our Retro Recipes series.

Continue reading “Aubergines Fourrées | Baked Eggplant Stuffed with Cheese and Tomatoes”

Whole Unhulled Urad and Rajma Dal | Urad Lentils and Kidney Beans Dal

It has been a while since I posted an Urad recipe. Urad is one of my favourite lentils, comforting and nourishing, and used a lot in the Punjab region. It is easy to cook with, especially if you know and respect its properties.

This dish is a cousin of Dal Makhani, using yoghurt instead of butter and cream, and whole urad rather than split urad dal.

And what a stunner! This is a slow cooked dish – taking around 5 hours – but they are effortless hours. No need to do more than the odd stir or two.

Are you looking for Urad recipes? You might like to try Urad and Red Rice Kitchari, Urad Dal Garlic Rice, and Urad Tamatar Dal.

We also have Rajma (kidney bean) recipes – try Rajma Sundal, Feijoada, and Capsicums Stuffed with Kidney Beans and Feta.

Or perhaps you are looking for Dal Makhani style dishes. Try our very popular Dal Makhani Restaurant Style, Indian Bazaar Dal Makhani, and Amritsari Dal.

Punjabi recipes are always packed with flavour. Try Baingan ka Bharta, Quince Aachar, and Tomato Bharta.

Alternatively, explore all of our Dal Makhani and similar recipes. Or browse Punjabi recipes. We have a range of different Urad recipes and Rajma (Kidney Bean) recipes. You might also like to check out the Madhur Jaffrey recipes that we love. Oh and our Dal recipes are here. All of our Indian recipes are here. Or take some time to browse our Mid Autumn dishes.

Continue reading “Whole Unhulled Urad and Rajma Dal | Urad Lentils and Kidney Beans Dal”

Carrots Glazed with Cumin and Ginger

A touch of spice turns carrots into something wonderful. Not that there is anything wrong with carrots as they are – delicious to munch on, wonderful grated into salads, carrot soups are amazing, pickles are so good, even in dips they shine. They can be poached, roasted, sautéed, mashed, curried, pureed and steamed or boiled.

Glazing carrots is quite retro, but as everything old is new again, we are re-introducing some of the techniques of last century.

Are you after other Carrot Recipes? Try Carrot Rice, Spicy Carrot Side Dish, English Creamed Carrots with Spices and Moroccan Carrot Salad.

Why not browse all of our Carrot recipes. Or explore Ginger recipes. Check out our easy Early Spring recipes here.

Also, feel free to browse recipes from our Retro Recipes series, vegetarian recipes from our first blog from 1995 – 2006.

Continue reading “Carrots Glazed with Cumin and Ginger”

Potatoes Baked with Cumin and Tomatoes

An unashamedly Retro Dish perfect for Modern Times.

Potatoes and Cumin are a great match. This retro baked dish is a great dish for any time of the year, and extremely wonderful in cooler Autumn months and Winter. It layers the potato with black pepper and cumin seed, and tops it with juicy tomatoes, breadcrumbs and parsley. It is a comforting dish, home cooking at its best. Who would not want to come home to a dish like this?

Are you looking for more Potato dishes? Try Gratin of Potatoes and Zucchini with Thyme, Potato Subzi, and a Surprise Potato Tartin.

Would you like to try other Gratin recipes? Try Gratineed Sweet Potato, Potato Gratin with Cream and Pomodori Gratinati – Tomatoes Gratineed with Cheese.

Feel free to browse recipes from our Retro Recipes series – recipes from our previous blog that ran from 1995 – 2005. You might also like our Potato recipes here and our Gratin Recipes. Or you might like to browse Tomato recipes. Check out our easy Mid Autumn recipes.

Continue reading “Potatoes Baked with Cumin and Tomatoes”

English Creamed Carrots with Spices

A modern take on an English classic.

Everything old is new again. This is definitely a retro English recipe, the sort of recipe that screams of the cold weather and the need for cream to make you feel comforted and warm and nourished. But it is also a lovely recipe that can be modernised to suit today’s palates.

Are you after other Carrot Recipes? Try Carrot Rice, Carrots with Green Peas and Green Coriander, Green Mung and Baked Carrot Salad, and a Spicy Carrot Side Dish.

Why not browse all of our Carrot recipes, or explore our English/British recipes. Or take some time to check out our easy Winter recipes.

Also, feel free to browse recipes from our Retro Recipes series, vegetarian recipes from our first blog from 1995 – 2006.

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Falafel | Ta’amia | Spicy Middle Eastern Chickpea Patties or Balls

Using cooked or tinned chickpeas, falafels are very easy to make.

Who can resist a good falafel? Wonderful for snacks, meals, in wraps or topping salads, they are wonderfully tasty, textural and healthy. Whip them up using chickpeas you have previously cooked and  frozen, for an easy supper.

Home made falafel are a huge cut above store-bought ones, or even those from some restaurants that must purchase them in bulk and keep them frozen for a long time. One has to wonder why, they are so easy to make, whereas many pre-prepared ones taste like cardboard. Who hasn’t had a wrap or roll with cardboard-tasting falafel stuffed into them for a “vegetarian option” when it would have been more flavoursome to leave them out?

Worry no more, we have your back. These are fantastic. Crispy crunchy on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. You can grind the chickpeas coarsely or more finely, which ever is your preference. But they must be ground enough to hold together as fritters.

You might like to also try hummus, which goes well with falafel. Chickpeas make a whole range of dishes. Try Chickpea Fingers, for example (it uses chickpea flour). Or Chickpea “Tabblouleh”Chickpeas can be baked, or made into a spread, or smashed and made into a salad.  They are really healthy – have a look at this article.

Continue reading “Falafel | Ta’amia | Spicy Middle Eastern Chickpea Patties or Balls”

Carrots and Green Peas with Green Coriander (Cilantro) | Gajar Matar Sabzi

I miss Priti, who lived in Adelaide for a short while. My friend was such a good cook and teacher. She shared wonderful recipes with me including this easy dish.  She needed to shift suddenly, and we lost contact. Miss you Priti. Hope all is well with you.

Priti introduced me to many of the dimensions of Indian cooking, and particularly the use of Coriander leaves. This dish is cooked with chopped green coriander for 30 mins or so. While this may seem unusual outside of India (coriander is normally used fresh, as a garnish), it is akin to using a coriander paste. The resulting flavours are great. Feel free to garnish with some fresh coriander if desired.

She had other Coriander recipes too, like this Coriander Chutney. You might also enjoy making Pudla with Coriander or Coriander Paste.

What about Peas? Try Stuffed Sandwiches with Potatoes and Peas, Savoury Rice and Green Pea Pilaf, and Tawa Peas.

Are you looking for Carrot recipes? Try Carrot and Blueberry Salad, Carrot Thoran, and a Herby Salad with Carrots.

Feel free to browse recipes from our Retro Recipes series – our vegetarian recipes from our first blog from 1995 – 2005. You might also like our Carrot recipes here and here. And Pea recipes here and here. The Coriander recipes are here and here. Or you might like to browse Indian recipes here and here. Check out our easy Winter recipes here and here.

Continue reading “Carrots and Green Peas with Green Coriander (Cilantro) | Gajar Matar Sabzi”

Hand Made Pesto | Zeffirino Pesto

Hand made, home made pesto is the most exquisite of creations. Do try it.

I first made it long ago, when I took a cooking class with Bill Grainger of the famous Bills Restaurants in Sydney, and author of many Sydney-style cookbooks. He made pesto by hand in the class. At home, Bill didn’t keep a lot of gadgets in his kitchen and didn’t have a blender!! So at home he always made it by hand. A man after my own heart – Meditation in the kitchen through manual grinding. There is something about pesto that you make yourself, especially if you grow your own basil.

This recipe is enough to make you reach for the basil plant, and bring the mortar and pestle out of the cupboard. You can smell the basil even while reading the recipe…. and taste the pasta.

You should check out our home made eggless pasta too.

Are you looking for pasta sauces? Try Pasta with a Cauliflower Sauce, Baked Tomato Pasta Sauce, and Pasta Sauce with Aubergine, Red Peppers and Tomato.

You might also like our Pesto recipes here and here. All of our Pasta Sauce recipes are here. Or you might like to browse our Italian recipes here and here. Alternatively, take some time to check out our easy Mid Summer recipes.

Feel free to browse other recipes from our Retro Recipes series – vegetarian recipes from our first blog from 1995 – 2006.

Continue reading “Hand Made Pesto | Zeffirino Pesto”

Italian Farmhouse Barley and Vegetable Soup | Zuppa di Orzo

A creamy and hearty soup for mid to late Winter, even into the cold of Spring

In October, 2001, I shifted back to cold Adelaide from temperate Sydney, and the cold weather was a shock! It had me craving soups. In Sydney I was not so keen on the more traditional English and heavy European food any longer – I had turned towards more Indian, Asian and Spicy food. However, coming back into the cold in Adelaide from warm Sydney made me hunger for hearty food – pasties, puddings and soups. How much heartier can you get than Barley Soup?

This really  is a hearty soup, made with caramelised vegetables that come together with the barley (some whole and some pureed) to make a great, Italian soup. Beautifully creamy, it is a delight for cold nights and wet weekends.

If you have been preserving and freezing foods in Autumn for Winter, this is a time to use chillies, garlic and tomatoes from your freezer. It makes it sooo easy.

It can be a tad confusing, as orzo in Italian is barley while in Greek it is rice shaped pasta. For this recipe, we are definitely using barley.

Are you after similar recipes? Try Parsnip and Barley Soup with Garlic and Sage and Parsnip and Carrot Soup with Crispy Garlic.

You might also like to browse all of our Soup recipes and our Barley Recipes. Our Italian recipes are here. Check out our easy Mid Winter recipes for Wintery inspiration.

This recipe is one of the vegetarian recipes from our first blog which was in existence from 1995 – 2005. It is cross posted on our sister site, A Life (Time) of Cooking. It appears here as part of the Retro Recipes series of recipes.

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Fig and Fresh Pecorino Salad

A fresh and inviting salad.

This salad has survived the years. It came about because I had some figs sitting on the kitchen bench, and some left over fresh pecorino. In a hurry, I threw them together in a salad with glorious results.

Figs, surprisingly, take acid very well, rocket too, so be generous with the lemon or lime juice.

The salad is fresh and inviting, and we have been known to have it for a Late Summer breakfast with a cup of coffee. Enjoy!

Are you looking for Fig recipes? Try Roasted Sweet Potato and Fresh Figs, Fig and Almond Salad, Figs with Rosewater and Almonds, and Figs Baked with Thyme.

Browse all of our Salads, or all of our Fig recipes here. Or enjoy browsing our Late Summer recipes.

We first made this dish in 2003, and it has survived the test of time. Feel free to browse other recipes from our Retro Recipes series – vegetarian recipes from our first blog from 1995 – 2006.

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Garlic Soup | For Cold Wintery Weather

Garlic Soup guaranteed to warm the cockles of your heart.

Feel that vampires are on the loose? Is it a full moon? Or do you just feel like a touch of Spain tonight? Is it extra cold where you are? Whatever, cook Garlic Soup for no reason at all.

Are you looking for warming soups? Browse our soup recipes here and here. Our favourites are Simple Mung Dal Soup and Spicy Rustic Red Lentil Soup. Have a look at the Garlic recipes here and here.  Find inspiration in our Winter recipes here and here.

Continue reading “Garlic Soup | For Cold Wintery Weather”

Currant Mint Pastries

In celebration of the birthday of this blog, I am publishing some of my old recipes. We began blogging in 1996, and this blog was created in 2007.

 

To cook is to be a sorcerer. – Alma Lach

Original quote from the front page of my first Recipe and Cooking Blog

Way back in 1996 I began putting my recipes online. Things were different then. The internet was still young. There were no blogging platforms. You needed to know how to write html and debug funny little errors in the postscript that was generated for printer files. There was no food porn. No photographs. Just words to describe your dishes.

You may like to browse all of the Retro Recipes. Our Dessert recipes are here and here. Be inspired by our Winter recipes here and here.

Continue reading “Currant Mint Pastries”

Caramelised Roast Pumpkin

A particularly Winter-y dish

In Autumn, the pumpkins arrive and thoughts of beautiful Autumnal pumpkin salads, risottos, mashes, curries, soups, BBQ’d pumpkin, pasta and other dishes swim around in a cook’s mind.

In Australia, we are not familiar with the huge variety of pumpkins available in other countries, so everything yellow and round is a pumpkin to us. We only have a few varieties. Queensland Blue pumpkin, for example. Need to take an axe to that one. Butternut, my favourite. Sweet natured and thin skinned, easy to deal with and delicious in taste. Jap, a sweet beauty. Sometimes in markets I might find a red pumpkin.

This is a great dish for Thanksgiving, if you celebrate that US festival. Other Thanksgiving recipes are here. Continue reading “Caramelised Roast Pumpkin”