Bannock | Scottish Girdle/ Griddle Oatcakes

Bannock, or Scottish Girdle (aka Griddle) Bread, is cooked in on a griddle or in a skillet from a simple dough. They can be cooked on the stove, on the BBQ or on a campfire! It is similar to a griddle baked scone – it has a fluffy centre that is slightly crumbly – and is best eaten with lashings of butter and jam. It can be cooked cut into circles, squares, wedges or left as a whole “bread”.

The word bannock comes from a Latin word that means “baked dough”. It originated in Scotland, where it was first made as a quite heavy and dense loaf with a barley or oatmeal dough and no leavening. As leavening agents were introduced, they began to be added to these skillet breads, making them fluffier. We keep somewhat traditional and make them with oatmeal and a little plain flour, but you will find modern recipes that use only flour.

So easy to make, so delicious, good weekend food.

Similar recipes include Griddle Scones, Singin’ Hinny, and Home Made Crumpets.

Browse all of our Oat recipes and all of our Griddle cooking recipes . Or explore our Late Winter recipes.

This is a vegetarian recipe from our first blog which was in existence from 1995 – 2006. You can browse other recipes from this blog in our Retro Recipes series.

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MID SUMMER – Don’t Miss these Stunning INDIAN Dishes for Summer | SEASONAL COOKING

Mid Summer! It is holiday time. Normally we’d travel, take it easy, visit the beach, read books and go to movies. Not this year though. But we can still cook, eat and drink. And there is nothing better to eat than Indian food. Enjoy these highlights from our Mid Summer Indian recipes.

You can browse all of our Mid Summer recipes here:

Please let us know if you find links that are not working. We would love to fix them for you.

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Coriander, Coconut and Gram Fresh Chutney

A fresh South Indian Chutney made from pureed coconut and coriander.

This is a simple but totally delicious Indian coconut chutney.

There are three varieties of Indian chutneys: fresh chutneys, cooked chutneys, and dry chutneys. Fresh South Indian chutneys are smooth purees made from uncooked ingredients, perhaps seasoned with a tadka of mustard seeds, dal, and curry leaves. They are best freshly made, but they stay good for a couple of days if refrigerated. Made from raw ingredients this type of chutney is unlike most other Indian dishes which have at least some degree of cooking.

Chutneys add zing to a meal and are an essential part of a South Indian meal. They can be prepared with a limitless variety of ingredients. This one is a variation on a Coconut-Coriander Chutney that we shared a while ago. In this one, tamarind is used as the souring agent and some fried gram is added for flavour and thickness. We haven’t added a tadka but you can if you prefer.

Coconut Chutney can be made without herb additions, or, like in this case, coriander can be added, or the same recipe used with mint leaves, garlic, tomatoes, onions, almonds, carrots, beetroot, green mangos, peanuts, capsicums, and greens. Tamarind is added in today’s recipe but it can be omitted or lime juice used.

Similar recipes include Fresh Radish and Mint ChutneyCoriander and Coconut Chutney, and Ginger, Coconut and Yoghurt Chutney.

Browse our Indian Chutneys. Our Coriander dishes are here. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Early Winter recipes.

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Radish and Cucumber Kachumber

Kachumber, the chopped salad of India, comes in many varieties. Usually the salad is chopped finely but today I made a colourful kachumber with wedges of cucumber and red radish. It is fresh and lively, a perfect salad for Summer and into Autumn while the weather is still warm. Kachumber is the perfect, no fuss accompaniment to any Indian meal.

Similar recipes include Carrot Kachumber, Beetroot and Carrot Kachumber, and Tangy Kachumber.

Or have a look at our collection of Kachumber recipes.

Browse all of our Kachumber recipes and all of our Indian Salads. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Mid Autumn recipes.

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100 Vegetables: #9. Avocado

Avocados are the darling of Australian cafes and homes. Available all year round, there are peak seasons for the popular varieties. Salads, mashes, salsas and soups are the most popular uses, but smoothies, cakes and even warm and baked avo are all possible. (For the record, I am not sure about warm or hot avocado 🙅‍♀️🙅‍♀️🙅‍♀️)

You can browse all of our Avocado recipes here. And check out our 100 Vegetable Series.

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Greek Chickpeas Slow Baked in Stock and Olive Oil with Herbs and Tomatoes

These will have to be the softest chickpeas ever. They are par boiled then baked in a slow oven for 2.5 hours. The dish is served either hot, warm or cold – it will make a meal in itself with a little feta and a green salad or some cooked greens. The recipe is adapted from Ikaria, by my favourite Greek cookbook author, Diane Kochilas.  It is a dish that can be made at any time of the year.

Similar recipes include Softest Chickpeas, Baked Dakos with Chickpeas, Feta and Tomatoes, and Slow Cooked Tomato Chickpeas.

Browse all of our Chickpea recipes and all of our Greek dishes. Or explore our Mid Winter recipes.

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Plantain Chips

One of my enduring memories of Kerala is the proliferation of freshly cooked plantain chips – delicious deep fried slices of raw banana, crispy and salty. Even when I was staying in Mylapore in Chennai, the wallah was making huge woks-full of fresh plantain chips right there on the street, so you’d get them straight from the pan.

They can be made at home of course – quite easily in fact. Just like the street wallahs, you can slice the plantain right into the hot oil if it is safe to do so. Otherwise slice them onto a plate and add to the oil. As they cook the flavourings are added to the layer of chips, or they can be salted as they come out of the pan. Madhur Jaffrey also adds curry leaves and green chilli to the oil before removing the chips – the oil does erupt a bit when you do this so I often leave it out. You can add chilli powder to the chips as they come out of the oil if you wish.

Similar recipes include Paprika Oven Chips, Polenta Crisps and Potato Wedges.

Browse all of our Indian Snacks and all of our Plantain recipes. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Early Winter recipes.

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A Collection of 30 Salads for MID WINTER

Early Winter sees the arrival of rains and cold weather. While the beginning of Winter can be mild, by mid season the chilly weather has usually arrived. In a good year it can rain almost daily. Gardens are not yet devoid of colour. Bougainvillea, cumquats, rosemary flowers, diosma, amaranth and bulbs of all sorts add welcome relief amongst the green weeds. Speaking of greens, all sorts of green leaves and salad leaves lose the limpness of Summer and are lush and abundant in the vegetable garden.

Salads generally have more substance now. Grains and beans creep in. Light salads no longer appear on the table. Although salads are served at room temperature they are still common but add substance and nourishment to the meal.

Okra is back in the shops, and an abundant array of other winter vegetables and fruits –  daikon, cauliflower, broccoli, pears, oranges, grapefruit, cumquats, pomelo, carrots, beetroot, mustard greens and other beautiful greens, cabbage, such beautiful beetroot, pumpkins, marrows, juicy radishes.

Similar posts include What to Do with Daikon Radish.

Here are 30 of our best salads for Early Winter.

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Wintery Carrot and Parsnip Turmeric Soup

When you have the Winter blues, when the Winter Lurgy has you in it’s grips, when you dream of sunshine because it has been absent for so long, it is time for soup! Soup restores sanity, spirits, optimism and health.

This soup takes a tray full of roasted vegetables and whizzes them into a soup. I’ve layered flavours with roasted onions as well as butter-sweated leeks, white pepper and black pepper, and the tiered flavours of Garam Masala. Underpinning it all is a healthy dose of turmeric and garlic, ingredients that will keep you healthy, or make you better when you are not at the top of your game. Into it all goes the sweet-tart caramelised flavours of roasted lemon for that needed hit of “sour” that enlivens any dish. It also balances out the sweetness of Winter carrots.

Carrots are best in winter. There is something about the coldness of Winter that intensifies the flavour of carrots. How precious they are in their sweetness and affinity for a range of vegetable combinations.

You might like to read more about the Spice mix, Garam Masala. As mentioned, it is used in this recipe to add layers of spice flavours which are warming without necessarily being hot in the chilli-hot sense. The spice mix for garam masala varies from region to region, so if you have not used it before, add a little at first, taste, and add more until it suits your spice comfort levels.

Similar recipes include French Carrot Soup, South Indian Carrot Soup, Carrot and Roasted Tomato Soup, and Roasted Carrot and Apple Soup.

All of our Soup recipes are here, (specifically our Carrot Soups here) and browse our Carrot recipes.  Or explore our wonderful Mid Winter recipes, especially our Mid Winter Soups.

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Minestrone di Pasta e Ceci | Minestrone with Pasta and Chickpeas

I have always loved pasta with chickpeas – a pretty classic dish in this household. There is something about the texture of the chickpeas with the pasta that is wonderful. And of course a pasta dish seems really healthy with all those chickpeas.

This recipe brings pasta and chickpeas together again, this time in a classic Minestrone. Use smaller pasta for this soup – small shells or small rounds of pasta like anelli or ditalini.

Similar recipes include Genoese Minestrone, Borlotti Bean and Pasta Soup, and Chickpea and Parsley Soup with Turmeric.

Browse all of our Minestrone recipes and all of our Soups. Or explore our Mid Winter dishes.

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