Chocolate Christmas Cookies

Tuesday 18 December 2012

Chocolate Christmas Cookies

This is one of the best Christmas Cookies recipes I have ever found. The Christmas cookies it makes are incredibly delicious. I used small cookie cutters but you can use any shape and size you like.

You can choose to melt milk free chocolate but I have never seen white milk free chocolate. Another idea is to dust the biscuits with icing (confectioner's) sugar. Then these will be totally milk free.

Chocolate Christmas Cookies

180 g Meadow Lea margarine 
1 1/4  caster sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 cups  plain flour
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking powder
100 g   white cooking Chocolate, melted

Using an electric mixer, beat margarine and sugar until light and fluffy, then add egg and beat well.

Sift together the flour, cocoa and baking powder, then add to the margarine mixture. Mix to form a soft dough. Place in freezer and freeze for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 180°C or 160°C fan. Line 2 large trays with baking paper.

This is a very soft dough so just use half of the dough leaving the other half in the freezer and roll out between two sheets of non stick baking paper until 5mm thick.

Using small cookie cutters of varying designs or the same if you choose, cut shapes from dough. Re-roll any scraps of pastry. Place on prepared trays, allowing room for spreading. Bake for 10–12 mins, until firm. Cool on trays for 5 mins, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Now what you need to do is place the piece of dough you just used into the freezer and take out the other half roll it out and cut shapes. Then once done place this piece in the freezer and take out the other piece.

It is a bit fiddly to do it this way but the dough warms up very quickly and you won't be able to work with it.

Once the cookies have cooled melt the white chocolate according to the instructions on the packet. Then lay all the cookies out close together and drizzle the chocolate over them with a spoon or if you have a piping bag you can elegantly pipe the white chocolate over them.

I made 105 cookies with this dough but my Christmas cookie cutters were about 5cm/2 inches long.

Cherry Tart

Thursday 13 December 2012

I was looking for a special treat to make as a birthday cake for a friend and came across this delicious Cherry Tart recipe.

This does have butter in it. Not sure if you can substitute margarine in the pastry but you may be able to do it with the filling. Give it a try and let me know how you go.

If I was making this for myself I would have substituted all the butter for margarine but as I was making it for someone else I stuck close to the recipe.

Cherry Tart 

1½ cups plain flour
100gm butter, cold chopped
2-3 tbsp iced water

100gm butter at room temperature
½ cup caster sugar
1 tspn vanilla paste
2 free range eggs
100gm almond meal
1/3 cup plain flour
500gm pitted cherries
icing sugar to dust

Place flour in a large bowl. Add butter and use your fingers to rub in until mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add water and mix with a knife until mixture starts to cling together. 

Gather dough in a ball. Turn out onto a sheet of baking paper and roll out to fit a 35cm x 12 cm loose bottom flan tin. Then remove from paper, but do not throw away,  and line tin with pastry. Chill for 20 minutes. 

Preheat oven to 180C or 160C for fan forced. Line pastry with sheet used above and fill with either baking beans, rice or beans. 

Bake for 15 minutes then remove beans or rice and cook for a further 15 minutes or until dry and lightly golden. Cool.

To make filling use electric beaters to beat butter and sugar until light and creamy. Beat in vanilla paste. Add eggs one at a time, beating well between each addition. Fold in almond meal and flour. Spread into pastry case. Arrange cherries over the filling pressing in slightly. 

Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown.  Cool, dust with icing sugar and cut into slices. Serve with cream if desired. 


1. If you can buy a cherry pitter do so! Otherwise you will have to hand pit 45 cherries. I did it with a toothpick and never again!

2.  I had a bit of trouble with it not baking in the centre and found that I had to put foil over the dish and put it on a lower shelf for an additional 20 minutes until it cooked through. Keep the oven low and keep your eye on it so it doesn't burn.

Shimmering Star Christmas Cookies

Shimmering Star Christmas Cookies

This recipe for Shimmering Star Christmas Cookies comes from Super Food Ideas Christmas magazine. They are so easy and so much fun to make.

If you can find the fruit drop boiled lollies do so. I searched everywhere but could not find them so I used barley sugar lollies.

Shimmering Star Christmas Cookies

125gm butter or Meadow Lea margarine
½ cup caster sugar
1 egg
1 ½ cups plain flour
¼ cup self raising flour
2 tablespoons custard powder
200gm packet barley sugar or fruit drop boiled lollies
2 tablespoons white granulated sugar

Using an electric mixer, beat butter or margarine and caster sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg. Beat until combined. Stir in flours and custard powder. Knead mixture into a ball and shape into a disc. Wrap in plastic wrap. refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 170C/150C fan forced. Line a few baking trays with baking baking. Roll dough between 2 baking sheets until 5mm thin. Using a 7.5cm star cutter, cut 1 star shape from dough.  Place on prepared tray. Using a 3.5cm star cutter star shaped cutter, cut 1 star from the centre of large star. Place small star on tray 3cm apart from large star.

Shimmering Star Christmas Cookies Raw

Place one unwrapped boiled lolly in the centre of large star. Repeat with remaining dough and lollies, re-rolling scraps. Brush edges of the large stars with cold water then sprinkle with sugar.

Shimmering Star Christmas Cookies Cooked

Bake biscuits one tray at a time for 7-8 minutes or until lollies are melted and biscuits are just firm to touch. Stand on trays for 10 minuted. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Christmas Pudding

Christmas Pudding

So you ask how to make a Christmas Pudding? I will tell you. I got this lovely Christmas Pudding recipe from last years Woolworths Fresh magazine. It is a recipe by the doyen of Australian cooking Margaret Fulton.

It goes fast so make sure you get one of the first pieces. You don't want to go to all the trouble of making this Christmas Pudding and not end up getting any to eat!

Rich Christmas Pudding Recipe

250gm raisins
250gm sultanas
250gm currants
60gm mixed peel
125gm blanched almonds
¼ cup rum or brandy
250gm unsalted butter
1 ¼ cups brown sugar
4 free range eggs
1 cup plain flour
1 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp ground ginger
12gm soft white breadcrumbs
Grated rind of medium sized orange

Place all fruits and almonds in a large bowl. Sprinkle with rum or brandy and leave overnight.

Cream butter until soft add sugar and orange and beat until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Sift flour and spices into a bowl and then fold into butter mixture. Stir in breadcrumbs and fruit mixture until well combined.

Grease 8 cup/2 litre pudding tin and line base with a circle of baking paper. Spoon in mixture. Cover top with another circle of baking paper.

Cover basin with a large sheet of baking paper with a pleat in the centre to allow for any rising. Tie firmly with string placing a plate on top of the bowl to hold the paper in place while doing this. Make a handle of string from side to side of the bowl latching onto the string around the whole and use to lower the pudding gently into a large saucepan of boiling water. If you have a pudding steamer with handles and a lid skip this step.

The water should come halfway up the side of the pudding basin. Cover and steam for 6 hours topping up each hour.

Put the pudding on a metal ring or old upturned saucer so pudding does not burn.

To flame warm a tablespoon of rum or brandy, light and pour over pudding at the table. Serve with custard.

Quick & Easy Pineapple Cake

Saturday 24 November 2012

Pineapple Cake Recipe

I found the recipe for this homemade pineapple cake while I was flicking through the 4 Ingredients cookbook.

The pineapple cake recipe was so quick and easy I decided I had to make it. I quickly trotted off to the supermarket got my can of pineapple made the pineapple cake first then cooked dinner and had dessert to eat at the end of the night.

Now that is my idea of a quick and easy dessert. It has a bit of a funny texture but is delicious. The original recipe calls for 1 cup of sugar but I thought it was too much so used half but I recommend a bit more. It's all trial and error.

For a bit of decadence I recommend a chocolate icing. It's divine but very wicked. If you can just stick to the pineapple cake on it's with a little Milk Free Butterscotch Ice-cream, I suggest it best.

Pineapple Cake with Homemade Butterscotch Ice-Cream

Pineapple Cake Recipe

2 cups self raising flour
3/4 cup sugar
450gm can of crushed pineapple in juice

Mix flour and sugar in a large bowl.

Add pineapple with juice and mix.

Bake in a lined cake tin at 180 degrees for 35 minutes.

Delicious Jerk Chicken

Friday 23 November 2012

Jerk Chicken Recipe

This is a Jamie Oliver recipe for Jerk Chicken. Actually it's his friend's Levi but I have changed it a bit to suit what I had in my pantry.

This is now my favourite jerk chicken recipe, it is absolutely delicious. Just make sure you have all the doors and windows open when you make this because it will smoke out everything set your fire alarm off and the smell will stick to your furniture for quite a few days. But let me tell you it is all worth it!

Or you can just make this outside on the BBQ instead of your griddle pan in the kitchen!

Jerk Chicken

1 tablespoon allspice
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1 tablespoon dried chilli flakes
½ tablespoon raw sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon parsley
1 garlic clove
1 teaspoon ginger
1 spring onion, trimmed and finely sliced
olive oil
500gm chicken wing pieces
olive oil
1 lime to squeeze over chicken when done

In a bowl mix Allspice, peppercorns, chilli flakes sugar and honey.

Then add the parsley, garlic and ginger to the spice mixture.

Add the green parts of the spring onions and a good drizzle of oil and mix well.

Pour the marinade over the chicken and massage it in. Leave to marinate in the fridge for at least 1 to 2 hours, but preferably overnight. (I highly recommend overnight if you can wait the flavour is incredible).

Place the chicken, skin-side down, on the pan or barbecue over a medium heat and cook for 30 turning often, or until the chicken is golden and cooked through.

When the chicken is ready, squeeze over a little lime juice, then take off the grill ready to tuck in.

Cooking Note:
You could also cook this in the oven at 200°C/400°F/gas 6 for 25 to 30 minutes, turning occasionally, then finish them off on the barbecue for 5 minutes to get all lovely and charred.

Milk Free Butterscotch Ice Cream

Tuesday 20 November 2012

Milk Free Butterscotch Ice-Cream

Milk Free Butterscotch Ice-cream

3 ½ cups Rice Milk
2 tablespoons arrowroot powder
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons milk free margarine
1 teaspoon vanilla paste

In a small bowl combine ¼ cup soy milk with arrowroot and set aside

In a pan over medium heat stir brown sugar, butter and vanilla for 3-4 minutes until butter melts, sugar dissolves and mixture is bubbly. Pour in ½ cup rice milk and whisk until smooth, then remove from heat. Set aside.

Mix remaining 2 3/4 cups rice milk in a saucepan and cook over low heat. Once mixture begins to boil, remove from heat anf immediately add arrowroot cream. This will cause the liquid to thicken noticeably.

Add butterscotch mixture to cream and whisk gently. Refrigerate under chilled approximately 2-3 hrs. Freeze according to ice cream makers instructions.

Stollen Recipe

Sunday 18 November 2012

Stollen Recipe

I found this Stollen recipe in the latest Coles magazine with recipes by Curtis Stone. It is their Christmas edition.

I have halved the recipe and changed all dairy products to milk free products. I made it to use up some sultanas and nuts that I had in my cupboard but you can add more if you choose including mixed peel and currents.

Stollen Recipe

1/3 cup lukewarm rice milk
1 tsp caster sugar plus 2 tbspns extra
1 tsp dried yeast (1 sachet)
1 1/2 cups plain flour
½ teaspoon mixed spice
50gm milk free margarine melted
½ egg lightly beaten
½ teaspoon vanilla essence
½ cup sultanas
½ cup slivered almonds

Combine milk, sugar and yeast in a jug and leave to stand for 10 minutes until frothy. Sift flour and spice into a large mixing bowl and stir in extra caster sugar. Make a well in the centre.

Add milk mixture, margarine, egg and vanilla essence to dry ingredients and use a wooden spoon to combine. Gather dough together with your hands and turn out onto a lightly floured work surface.

Knead for 10 minutes until dough is smooth and elastic. Place into a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and leave in a warm place for 1 hr or until doubled in size.

Preheat oven to 180C. Line a large baking tray with baking paper. Turn dough onto work bench and press out about 2cm thick. Sprinkle fruit and almonds over and knead briefly to combine.

Roll the dough to an oval shape, about 28cmx18cm. Starting at one long side, roll into a log shape and place onto prepared tray. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown and hollow sounding when tapped. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Dust generously with icing sugar.

Chocolate Malteser Cake

Sunday 28 October 2012

Chocolate Malt Ball Cake

I saw this Chocolate Malteser Cake recipe on Pinterest and pinned it instantly. I changed the recipe a bit because it was all chocolate including the cake. This one I changed to a delicious vanilla cake with a chocolate fudge icing and Maltesers on top.

The recipe for the vanilla cake came from a wonderful cook book I found called The Commonsense Cookery Book first published in 1914. It is my go to book when I want a basic recipe that is easy to make. It is an invaluable cook book in my library.

Vanilla Cake

125gm milk free margarine
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
2 eggs
2 cups self raising flour sifted
1/2 cup rice milk

1. Grease and lightly flour 20cm round baking tin.

2. Cream butter sugar and vanilla.

3. Add eggs one at a time beating well after each addition.

4. Add sifted flour alternately with milk.

5. Spread in prepared tin and bake at 180C/350F for 45 minutes. Keep an eye on it as it may burn before cooked. If so just cover with foil and place on lower shelf in oven until done.

Chocolate Malteser Cake

Malteser Chocolate Fudge Icing

2 cups icing sugar
1/4 cup milk free margarine
4 tablespoons water
2 heaped tablespoons cocoa
2 jumbo bags of Maltesers

Sift icing sugar and cocoa together then mix to combine.

Add water and margarine and stir until smooth.

Spread on cake thickly.

Arrange Maltesers in a cross first then fill in each section.

Recipe for Lentil Soup

Wednesday 24 October 2012

Recipe for Lentil Soup

I like making lentil soup but wanted a recipe for lentil soup that had a bit more flavour to the last recipe I had.

This one is an incredibly delicious recipe with lots of flavour and body. It's a hearty meal that is incredibly delcious and good for you with ltos of vitamins and minerals.

This is also a vegetarian lentil soup with no animal products at all. ( I forgot to take a photo so used the photos from the recipe. I can't remember where I found this recipe now.)

Recipe for Lentil Soup

1 tbs extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to drizzle
1 small leek thinly sliced
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 tbs tomato paste
1/2 cup brown lentils, rinsed, drained
1L vegetable stock
200g can chopped tomatoes
200g can cannellini beans, rinsed, drained
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
Crusty bread, to serve

Boil the lentils first in a saucepan for 10 minutes then drain. This gets rid of all the impurities.

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.

Add the leek, carrot and celery, then cook, stirring, for 3-4 minutes until softened.

Add the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute.

Add the lentils and stock and bring to the boil.

Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer gently for 45 minutes, skimming the surface occasionally, until the lentils are tender.

Add the tomato, cannellini beans, coriander, paprika and some salt and pepper to the pan, then cook, stirring occasionally, for a further 10-15 minutes or until soup is thick. Taste for spices and seasoning, then stir in half the parsley.

Divide soup among bowls and top with remaining parsley, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and freshly ground pepper. Serve and enjoy with crusty bread.

Best Bolognese Sauce

Tuesday 23 October 2012

Bolognese Sauce with Mushrooms

I used this recipe for Bolognese Sauce because I had made a delicious lentil soup a few nights ago and had half a can of Leggo's Diced Italian Tomatoes left over so went searching for a recipe to use them in. I didn't have to look far as it was on the can!

This is a very simple recipe for Bolognese Sauce that is easy to make and doesn't take too long.

I always use Tagliatelle pasta as it is my favourite. Makes a much heartier meal. Delicious. This recipe serves 3.

Bolognese Sauce Recipe with Mushrooms

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 onion chopped
1 clove garlic chopped
250gm chuck steack minced or you can buy ready minced
1 tbspn tomato sauce
200gm Leggo's diced italian tomatoes
1 cup beef stock
1 bay leaf
3 large mushrooms chopped
1 teaspoon dried mixed Italian herbs

In a large saucepan heat oil, add onion and garlic and cook for 2 minutes.

Add beef mince, I always mince my own but you can buy ready minced, and cook until browned.

Stir in diced tomatoes, sauce, half the stock, bay leaf and mixed herbs.

Bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer covered for 20 minutes then add mushrooms and simmer a further 10 mintues.

Stir occasionally and top up with rest of beef stock. Season with salt.

To make the pasta boil some water in a kettle then place in saucepan 15 minutes after you have put the Bolognese Sauce on simmer. The Tagliatelle pasta takes 10 minutes to boil. They should then both be ready at the same time.


Sushi Recipe

Sunday 21 October 2012


The hardest part about making sushi and this sushi recipe is the rice. The rest is very quick and easy. I bought the Obento Sushi Kit which had everything in it. All I had to buy were the ingredients that I wanted to put in the sushi rolls.

Cooking Sushi Rice

1. Bring 600ml water and contents of the rice sachet to the boil.
2. Lower heat, cover and simmer 12-14 minutes.
3. Remove from heat and stand covered 5-10 minutes.

Prepare Sushi Rice

1. In a large bowl, evenly sprinkle powdered sushi mix over hot rice.
2. Stir through rice using a paddle or flat blade knife to separate and cool rice.
3. Divide rice into 6 even portions.

Prepare Sushi

1. Place 1 sheet of nori (shiny side down) onto the bamboo rolling mat, moisten your hands with water and take a handful of cooled prepared rice.

Sushi Rolls

2. Spread the rice evenly over the surface of the nori, to within 1cm of the edge.

3. I spread some mayonnaise in the middle of the placed some chopped up prawns.

sushi rolls
4. Then I added some sliced up avocado and salt.

sushi rolls
5. Begin rolling up the mat over the ingredients holding the mat tight. Stop when you get 2.5cm from the edge of the sushi roll. Lift the mat and roll forward again to join the edges of the sushi roll. Keep applying a gentle pressure to make the roll firm.

Sushi Pictures

6. Use a sharp knife to cut the completed rolls in half, place the halves side by side and cut into thirds each roll will make 6 pieces.

Chicken and Mushroom Pies

Saturday 20 October 2012

I love making these chicken and mushroom pies. It's great for when I am feeling lazy about cooking because they last a few days and I can eat them without having to cook.  The bad side about these pies is they are time consuming.

I prefer to use the reduced fat puff pastry because they have less butter and are lighter on the stomach. It doesn't take away from the flavour they taste just as delicious as normal puff pastry. You can also use short crust pastry. I just had puff pastry in my freezer so used that.


Chicken and Mushroom Pies

Makes 4 small pies

2 tspns olive oil
700gm chicken thigh fillets chopped
1 leek finely sliced
100gm cup mushrooms sliced
30gm butter
1 tbspn plain flour
1 cup rice milk
4 sheets reduced puff pastry or short-crust pastry
50gm melted milk free margarine

1 heat oil in a large non-stick frying pan and cook chicken in 3 batches over medium high heat until well browned and cooked through. Set aside in a bowl.

2. Reduce heat to medium and add leek to the pan. Cook for 2 min or until leek is soft. Add mushrooms and cook for a further 3-4 minutes or until soft. Remove from pan and add to chicken. Melt margarine in same pan and sprinkle flour over. Cook stiring for 1 min. Add milk a little at a time stirring until smooth and well combined between each addition.

3. Add milk mixture to chicken and vegetable and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste and cool completely.

4. Preheat oven 190C or 170C fan. Cut a 16cm and a 12cm round from each pastry sheet (they will overlap slightly but you can stretch out the pasty to fit) Line 4 lightly greased 1 cup capacity pie dishes with larger pastry rounds.

5. Fill pie shells with chicken mixture, then lay a smaller round on top. Use a fork to seal the edges and then prick a few holes in the top tp let the steam out. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown.

Ginger Cake

Ginger Cake, Ginger Cake Recipe

I really love ginger it's great for you and tastes great too. When I found this Ginger Cake recipe I had to make it.

It so simple and easy to make and totally lactose free.

Ginger Cake

1 tablespoon margarine
½ cup brown sugar
1 egg
½ cup rice milk
1 tablespoon honey
1 cup flour
2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

Grease a loaf tin
Cream margarine and sugar
Beat egg well mix in the milk and treacle
Add gradually to creamed margarine and sugar
Lightly stir in the sifted flour, ginger, cinnamon and soda.
Pour into tin.
Bake for about 25 minutes.
Turn onto cooling racks to cool.


White Icing Sugar
You can choose to ice with icing sugar mixed with a little water to the consistency that you like. I prefer a thicker topping so don't use much water.

Cinnamon & Honey Topping
Melt 2 tablespoon milk free margarine and brush over loaf then sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and then drizzle with a little honey. 

Homemade Vegan Chocolate Mud Cake

Monday 8 October 2012

I got this lovely Vegan Chocolate Mudcake recipe from  I was looking for a sweet treat but something healthy and this hit the spot.

This is a chocolate cake recipes made from scratch which you will definitely enjoy and make again and again.

Chocolate Mudcake Recipe

100g Wholemeal flour
100g Plain flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
30g Cocoa
100g Caster sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
125ml Vegetable oil
175ml Water

Chocolate Icing
1 cup icing sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
2 tablespoons milk free margarine
2 tablespoons water


Preheat oven to 160 degrees C.

Mix all dry ingredients together.

Add wet ingredients and mix with a mixer on high for a couple of minutes.

Pour into baking tin.

Cook for approx 40mins or until a skewer comes out clean.

Allow to cool to room temperature.

Ice with Choclate icing by sifting the icing sugar and cocoa powder. Then add remaining ingredients and mix well. Ice cake.

Light and Healthy Sausage Rolls

Friday 5 October 2012

I have wanted to make sausage rolls for ages but don't really like eating pastry because I find it too heavy due to all the butter that it has in it. Then I discovered low fat puff pastry and thought I would give it a go. I am glad I did as it is light and delicious.

I mince my own meat which I prefer to to do as this way I know exactly what type of meat goes in it. No off cuts for me. I got my mincer off eBay for about $40 and it works brilliantly.

Serve these healthy and delicious little sausage rolls with tomato sauce as you can see from above I love my sauce.

Be careful as they are light and addictive. Pace yourself. If you eat too many you will get a stomach ache. Hmmm am I speaking from experience!

Sausage Rolls Recipe

Makes 20

250gm chuck steak minced or your can buy ready minced beef
1/2 cup dried breadcrumbs
1/2 zucchini grated
1/2 small brown onion chopped
1 small carrot grated
1 tspn thyme
1 tbsp parsley
1/4 cup melted milk free margarine
2 sheets frozen low fat puff pastry
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 200C. Line 2 baking trays with baking paper.

Mix together mince, breadcrumbs, zucchini, carrot, herbs, salt and pepper and half of the melted margarine. Use hands and mix well to combine.

Cut each side of pastry in half. Divide mince mixture along the centre of each piece of pastry, shaping it into a log. Brush edges of pastry with remaining melted margarine. Roll up pastry to enclose filling. 

Cut into preferred sizes. I got between 4 and 5 pieces per log. Brush with remaining melted margarine and place on prepared trays.

Bake for 20 minutes until pastry is puffed up and golden. Serve the sausage rolls with tomato sauce.

Pork Wonton Soup

Wednesday 5 September 2012

I found this Pork Wonton Soup recipe in that wonderful Woolworths Fresh magazine.  It is very simple and easy to make and very delicious.

I didn't have any bok choy which the original recipe calls for so used broccoli and mushrooms instead.

The wonton wrappers were purchased from a Korean supermarket which was a few blocks away from where I work so easy to get. I couldn't find them in my local supermarket.

Pork Wonton Soup Recipe

200gm pork mince
5 whole chestnuts finely chopped
1 tbsp Oyster Sauce
2 green shallots finely chopped
1 tsp cornflour
24 gow gee wrappers
4 cups chicken stock
4 cups cold water
¼ cup salt-reduced soy sauce
2 tspns sesame oil
4 large mushrooms chopped
¼ broccoli cut into smaller pieces

1. Combine mince, chestnuts, shallots and oyster sauce in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper.

2. Mix cornflour with 1 tbsp cold water to make a smooth paste. 


 3. Place three gow gee wonton wrappers on the bench top. Put a teaspoon of pork mixture into the centre of each wrapper, brush edges with cornflour mixture then bring up corners to form a sack and repeat (as above).

 4. Pour stock and water into a large deep saucepan and bring to the boil over high heat. Add soy sauce, sesame oil and wontons.

5. Cook for 3 then add broccoli and mushrooms and cook for another 3 minutes.

6. Ladle soup into bowls and serve.

Crispy Potato Chips

Tuesday 21 August 2012

I found this fantastic recipe for super crispy chips and wedges.

They really do come out crispy crunchy and healthy.

Crispy Potato Chips & Wedges


Wash potatoes.

Add to saucepan of cold water and bring to the boil cooking for 15 minutes.

Drain potatoes and cool slightly.

Cut potatoes into wedges or slices.

On medium high heat melt some margarine and oil in a large fry pan and sauté wedges until golden brown.

Reduce heat to medium and cook for another 10 minutes or until wedges are crispy and soft inside.

Season with salt.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Truffles

Tuesday 14 August 2012

I found this Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Truffle recipe a few months ago but have not been game enough to try it until last night. I can't even remember where I found it.

Anyway it's a very naughty recipe but still good. It is for those days when you say to hell with it I want chocolate!

The chocolate coating has a lovely crunch to it when you bite through it to get to the cookie dough centre. They are so fun to eat. Enjoy!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Truffles

Makes: 18-24

1 1/4 cups plain flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon bi-card soda (baking soda)
1/2 cup margarine, room temperature
1/3 cup white sugar
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 tbsp soy milk
1/2 cup chocolate chips
200 gms dark chocolate for coating

Beat butter and sugars in a large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add soymilk and vanilla. Stir in flour, baking soda and salt and mix until combined. Stir in chocolate chips.

Cover and chill dough for 1 hour.

Form dough into round balls and arrange on a baking sheet lined with baking paper.

Place in freezer and chill for 30 minutes.

Melt chocolate coating in a heat proof bowl over a saucepan of boiling water or as package directions.

Using a fork or a dipping tool, dip cookie balls into chocolate to cover. Tap fork on side of pan to remove any excess coating, and return to lined baking trays. Chill until set.

Store, in an airtight container in the fridge though good luck making them last that long!

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Sunday 12 August 2012

Even though I am lactose intolerant I still love chocolate and had a mad craving for Chocolate Chip Cookies. I actually found this recipe on my baking tray from Baker's Secret.

These are soft Chocolate Chip Cookies they don't come out crunchy but they are incredibly delicious.

I hope you will love them as much as I do.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

1/2 cup margarine
1/3 cup white sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup & 2 tbsp plain flour 
1/2 tsp bi-carb soda


1. Pre-heat oven to 175 C. Line a cookie tray with baking paper.

2. In a large bowl, cream together margarine, brown sugar and white sugar until light and fluffy.

3. Add egg beating well then stir in vanilla.

4. Sift flour and bi-carb soda then add salt and stir into creamed mixture.

5. Stir in chocolate chips.

6. Place rounded spoonfuls onto biscuit tray.

7. Bake for 8 - 10 minutes until lightly brown. Then move to cooling rack and enjoy.

Basic Biscuit Recipe

Tuesday 26 June 2012

Basic Biscuit Recipe

These are a lovely light basic biscuit recipe. I sandwiched them with some chocolate filling. They are a nice easy biscuit to make and enjoy.

Basic Biscuit Recipe

1 ½ cups self-raising flour
Pinch of salt
½ cup custard powder
½ cup sugar
125g margarine
3 tablespoons rice milk

Chocolate Filling
1 cup icing sugar
2 tbspoons cocoa powder
2 tbspoons margarine
2 tbspoons hot water

Prepare two flat baking trays with baking paper.

Sift flour salt and custard powder into a bowl.

Add sugar

Add butter and rub in with tips of fingers until the mixture is like coarse breadcrumbs

Add milk and mix very firm by hand.

Turn onto a floured board and roll round with hand to coat lightly with flour

Roll out thinly with floured rolling pin.

Cut into desired shapes using a 4cm flutted cookie cutter.

Bake at 160c for 20 minutes

Transfer to a wire rack until cool.

Chocolate Filling
To make chocolate filling sift icing sugar and cocoa powder then combine wet ingredients and stir.

Chocolate Ice Cream Tunnel Cake

Wednesday 6 June 2012

Chocolate Ice Cream Tunnel Cake

This Chocolate Ice Cream Tunnel Cake recipe is from the late 70's and was given to me by a work friend. It is very old school but I have updated the presentation.

It is very simple to make if a bit fiddly due to cutting the top off and tunneling through the cake but don't let this deter you.

Those leftover bits are absolutely divine and your reward for making this fun cake.

Chocolate Cake

2 1/2 cups plain flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup Meadow Lea Margarine
1 3/4 cups (440g) white sugar
3 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla essence
1 1/2 cups (375ml) lactose free milk

Ice Cream filling

500ml lactose free vanilla ice cream


1 cup icing sugar
hot water

Preheat oven to 180C. Grease and flour a 23cm fluted tin.

Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl cream together the margarine and sugar until light and fluffy.

Beat in the eggs one at a time then stir in the vanilla.

Beat in the flour mixture alternately with the milk, mixing until just incorporated. Pour batter into prepared pan.

Bake in the preheated oven for 50 to 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack and allow to cool.

To make the tunnel, first cut a slice about 3 cm thick from top of the cake.

Using a small knife, cut away sections of cake to leave a rim of cake about 3cm thick. So create a moat in the centre of the cake. Use the kofe to cut away the edges then a small spoon tos coup out the middle.

Allow ice cream to soften slightly at room temperature and use to fill tunnel in cake pressing in firmly. Replace top of cake, wrap enitire cake firmly in freezer and freeze until day of party.

About 20 minutes before serving take cake out of freezer.

To make icing sift the icing sugar then add warm water to form a soft icing. Drizzle over cake.


Hedgehog Slice

Friday 1 June 2012

Hedgehog Slice

I had a craving for Hedgehog my favourite chocolate slice the other day so did a quick Google search and found this wonderful Hedgehog slice recipe at Stay at Home Mum.

I have removed the egg, I am not too keen on eating raw egg. There is also no chocolate in this it is cocoa powder that gives you the delicious chocolate hit.

I also chose to use Scotch biscuits for a richer flavour which is a bit naughty but you can use any plain biscuit you like.

This recipe will only make a few slices, I just made enough to satisfy my chocolate craving. Double or triple the recipe if you want more!

Recipe for Hedgehog Slice

80gm Meadow Lea dairy free margarine
1/2 cup icing sugar
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
2 tablespoons dessicated coconut
125gm Scotch Fingers, broken into large pieces

Chocolate Icing
1/2 cup icing sugar
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
2 tablespoons hot water

In a medium size bowl sift the icing sugar and cocoa powder and then add the coconut mixing well.

Melt the margarine in a small saucepan.

Remove from heat and add the dry ingredients to the margarine mixing well to combine.

Gently stir in the Scotch Finger biscuits until they are coated with the chocolate mixture.

Press the mixture into a lined baking tray and chill for 1 hour.

To make the icing sugar sift the icing sugar and the cocoa powder into a bowl. Add the hot water and mix to a smooth paste.

Then spread over slice and chill for another hour.

To cut use a warm knife - heat knife by running under hot water and wiping clean.

Makes about 6 slices.


Wednesday 30 May 2012

Snickerdoodles - Cinnamon Sugar Cookies

I was just surfing the nett when I came across Snickerdoodles!  With a name like that I had to find out more.  Snickerdoodles are also known as Cinnamon Sugar Cookies and have been around since the late 1800s.

Their origin is un-known but they probably originated in New England and have either German or Dutch descent. Where the name comes from is anyone's guess.

There is no milk in these just lots of sugar and margarine. They are really light and easy on the stomach.

So let's get cooking.


Makes 18

¼ cup margarine
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1 1/3 cup sifted plain flour
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of  soda

¼ cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 200C (400F).

Combine the margarine, sugar, and egg in a mixing bowl and mix well.

Combine the sifted flour, cream of tartar, bicarb of soda.

Add flour mixture to the maragrine mixture and mix well.

Shape the dough into 2 cm balls or larger if you choose.

Combine the 1/2 teaspoon of sugar and cinnamon and roll the balls in the cinnamon sugar.

Arrange the balls a few centimetres apart on a lined biscuit tray.

Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until light brown.

Cool on a cooling rack and enjoy.

Margarine - I used an olive oil based margarine just for something different.

Peanut Butter Muffins

Wednesday 16 May 2012

I had a little bit of peanut butter left over and wanted to make something with it so a little search found this healthy Peanut Butter Muffin recipe. 

Peanut Butter Muffins

Makes 12

2 cups sifted plain flour
½ cup raw sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
½ cup peanut butter
3 tbspns milk free margarine
2 eggs
1 cup rice milk
Cinnamon sugar

In a large bowl combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.

Add peanut butter and 2 tablespoons milk free margarine and with your fingertips work it until mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

Beat the eggs and milk then stir into dry ingredients until just combined.

Fill paper-lined muffin tin two thirds full.

Heat oven to 200 degrees and bake for 15-20 minutes or until muffins done.

Melt remaining margarine and brush over muffins then sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

Always best eaten fresh out of the oven otherwise place on wire rack until cooled. 

Focaccia Bread Recipe

Monday 14 May 2012

This focaccia bread recipe is my favourite as most make a thick dough which gives me a stomach ache but this focaccia bread recipe produces a thin pizza like crust that is juicy and delicious.

The reason it gives a pizza like dough is because it is a recipe for pizza dough which I got from one of my favourite cook books A little Bit of This, a Little Bit of That from the winner of Junior Masterchef Isabella Bliss and her family.

The recipe has been passed down through generations is easy to make and tastes great too.

The one I made above is seasoned on one half as I wanted to keep some plain to eat my delicious Cauliflower and Zucchini Soup with. 

Focaccia Bread Recipe

Makes 1 focaccia

125ml lukewarm water

4gm dry yeast
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 tsp salt
200gm plain flour
50gm extra plain flour
1 teaspoon dry rosemary
1 teaspoon Masterfoods Garlic and Herb Salt (I love this salt)

Place the water and yeast into a large bowl and stir with your fingers until the yeast dissolves and the water looks milky.

Add the sugar, salt and flour to yeast mixture and mix until a soft dough forms. Use extra flour if required.

Place dough onto a flat surface and knead for 5-7 minutes until it is soft and smooth.

Place the dough into a lightly greased bowl, cover with cling wrap and a clean towel. To get dough to rise faster heat oven and place bowl on stove top.

Leave to rise for about 1 hr. If placing on warm stove dough will rise in approximately 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 200C.

Sprinkle flour on your bench and along the rolling pin. Then take the dough and roll out to the desired thickness and size.

Lightly grease a round or square tray (I used a pizza tray which has holes in it to make a crispy base). Lightly grease the top of the rolled out dough and place on tray.

Then sprinkle with rosemary and herb salt. If you don't have this salt which I HIGHLY RECOMMEND you buy because it is incredibly delicious you can finely chop 1 clove of garlic and sprinkle 1 tablespoon dry parsley and thyme.

With a fork place holes in a few places on top of the dough so you don't get air bubbles when it rises.

Place focaccia bread in oven and bake for 20 - 30 minutes until golden brown on top.

Best eaten fresh out of the oven when the focaccia bread smells absolutely divine. 

Homemade Pancakes with Blueberry Sauce

I had a craving for pancakes last night but didn't have any honey or syrup of any kind. A quick look through the fridge found a bag of frozen blueberries.

Then a quick Google search found a great Nigella recipe for Blueberry Sauce and I was in business.

The homemade pancakes recipe is from Jamie Oliver. I love it because it is such a simple, basic pancake recipe and the Nigella Blueberry Sauce recipe is just as easy.

You will be enjoying this delicious treat in 30 minutes.

Homemade Pancakes Recipe

1 cup self raising flour
1 cup soy milk
1 egg beaten

Sift flour

Add soy milk

Add egg

Whisk until combined. Do not overbeat as the pancakes will come out tough.

Heat up a fry pan on medium heat and add milk free margarine. Next place enough batter in the frypan to get the size of pancake you want.

Wait until bubbles form on the surface before turning pancake over. Repeat until you cook the amount of pancakes you wish.

Blueberry Sauce Recipe

1 cup blueberries
2 tablespoons raw sugar
1 tablesoopn lemon juice

Place all ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Turn down heat and simmer for about 5-8 minutes until mixture thickens into a sauce.

Plate up pancakes and pour blueberry sauce over the top.

See how easy that pancake recipe was to make and the blueberry sauce recipe too!


Best Blueberry Muffins

Monday 7 May 2012

This is one of the best blueberry muffins recipe I have found in a while. It is from Marian Keyes Saved by Cake Cookbook. In her book the recipe is called Sweet and Simple Strawberry Cupcakes but strawberries are not in season so I used frozen blueberries.

This is a wonderful light and fluffy blueberry muffins recipe that is milk free. 

I only made 6 as I wanted them for a snack. They are quick and easy to make and not much washing up afterwards. It really is the perfect recipe.

Blueberry Muffin Recipe

Makes 6

100g ms fresh or frozen blueberries (I used frozen)
50mls vegetable oil
45gms caster sugar
1 egg
90gms plain flour
¼ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

Preheat oven to 180 degrees and line a 6 hole cupcake tray with paper cases.

Mash the blueberries a little.

Beat the oil, sugar and eggs together until well combined.

Add the blueberries sift in the flour and bicarbonate of soda and fold through.

Pour the batter into the cases and bake for 20 minutes.

Cool on a wire rack.

You can sift a little caster sugar over the top or butter with milk free margarine and drizzle honey to taste.

Drunk Chicken

Friday 4 May 2012

I found this Drunk Chicken recipe in the paper and comes from some book or other but I didn't cut that bit out so I don't remember. It is suppose to be a Mexican dish called Chicken in Wine but I prefer to call it Drunk Chicken.

Drunk Chicken

Serves 3 people

6 pieces of chicken
¼ cup oil for frying
250gm onions sliced
2 cups wine
2 cups water
2 chicken stock cubes
2 bay leaves
300gms small potatoes cubed
½ cup button mushrooms chopped

Sprinkle chicken pieces with salt and pepper.

Heat oil in a large saucepan and fry the chicken until browned.

Add onions, wine, water stock cubes, bay leaves, potatoes and button mushrooms.

Cook slowly for 25 minutes if you are using only the chicken breast.

Cook for 50 – 60 minutes if using chicken thighs and other pieces of chicken.

Healthy Banana Bread Recipe

Thursday 3 May 2012

Easy banana bread recipe

Homemade banana bread

I can't remember where I found this easy banana bread recipe but it is a very healthy banana bread recipe.

Looks like a regular bread loaf, smells divine and tastes even better.

I love eating bread fresh out of the oven with lots of milk free margarine spread on it and honey drizzled on top, yum!

Healthy Banana Bread Recipe

1 2/3 cups wholemeal self raising flour
1/3 cup raw sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp organic vanilla essence
3 bananas, mashed

Preheat the oven to 160°C and grease and line a loaf pan with baking paper.

Sift flour into a bowl and then scoup in the whoelemal flakes. Stir in sugar and cinnamon. Add the eggs, vanilla and banana and stir until everything is well combined. Spread mixture into prepared pan.

Bake the homemade banan bread for 45-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cool in the pan then turn the banana bread out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Slice the homemade banana bread and serve with milk free margarine and honey drizzled on top.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

Monday 30 April 2012

chocolate peanut butter biscuits

Now this Chocolate peanut butter cookies recipe was actually a different recipe which didn't work out as meant to. They are the pillows recipe but mine came out differently! I guess that is what happens when you change around ingredients. But's it's okay because the pillows are now Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies which are tasty and very delicious.

This recipe it totally lactose free and the cookies come out crisp and very tasty.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies Recipe

1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup raw sugar
1/4 cup honey
3 tablespoons soy or rice milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 1/2 cups plain flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon bicard of soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup natural salted peanut butter, crunchy or creamy
2/3 cup icing sugar
2 to 3 tablespoons rice or soy milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla essence

In a large mixing bowl combine oil, sugar, honey, rice or soy milk and vanilla essence and mix until smooth. Sift in flour, cocoa powder and bicard of soda and salt. Mix to form a moist dough.

To make the filling in another bowl beat together peanut butter, icing sugar, 2 tablespoons of soyr or rice milk and vanilla essence to form a moist but firm dough.
Preheat the oven to 175C (350F). Line trays with baking paper.

STart by rolling the filling into about 24 small marble sizes balls.

Then take a tablespoon of chocolate dough, flatten into a disc and place a peanut butter ball in the center. Fold the sides of the chocolate dough up and around the peanut butter center and roll the chocolate ball into an smooth ball between your palms.

Place on lined baking tray and repeat with remaining dough.
Place dough balls on lined baking sheets about 5 cms (2 inches) apart and bake for 20 minutes.

Allow cookies to cool on a tray before moving to a cooling rack. 

Watermelon Sorbet Recipe

Friday 27 April 2012

I had a lot of watermelon left over and was worried it was getting overly ripe so decided to make some refreshing watermelon sorbet

A quick Google search for a watermelon sorbet recipe found this delicious treat with a few changes.

Watermelon Sorbet Recipe

4 cups pureed watermelon (1/4 of a large watermelon)
½ cup raw sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest

Chop up watermelon into small pieces then use a blender to puree it.

In a small saucepan bring ½ cup watermelon puree, lemon juice, zest and raw sugar to a simmer and remove it from the heat.

Allow mixture to cool for 20 minutes.

Add the lemon and watermelon mixture to the rest of the pureed watermelon and mix well.

Place mixture into an ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturer’s instructions.


Chicken Madfoun with Vermicelli & Almonds

Wednesday 25 April 2012

I found this divine Chicken Madfoun with Vemicelli and Almonds recipe in the wonderful cook book A Month in Marrakesh by Andy Harris.

This cook book has incredible recipes with the most amazing photos that transport you back to Marrakesh. You feel as if you are there. That is what attracted me most to this book.

I have cooked a few recipes from the book and have been waiting for the opportunity to cook the Chicken Madfoun and it won't be the last.

I really love vermicelli, they are lovely thin like noodles that go perfectly with this dish.

I am sure you are also wondering about the icing sugar. Please make sure to sprinkle it on. It will be missing something if you don't. Be adventurous. I am sure you will absolutely love this dish as much as I.

I used my tagine but you can also use a casserole dish.  

Chicken Madfoun with Vermicelli & Almonds
 Serves 3

2 tablespoons olive oil
40g milk free margarine
1 ½ large onions thinly sliced
500gm chicken pieces (thighs, drumsticks, wings)
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
cold water
rock salt
freshly ground pepper
200gm vermicelli

To serve
slivered toasted almonds
icing sugar
ground cinnamon

Heat half the olive oil and margarine over medium heat in a tagine or casserole dish. Add the onions and sauté for 5-7 minutes until softened, then transfer to a bowl.

Add the chicken pieces to the tagine and sauté for 5-7 minutes until browned. Return the onions to the tagine and add ginger, saffron, ground cinnamon and enough water to cover the chicken. Season generously with salt and pepper.

Bring to the boil. Reduce to a low heat, cover with the lid and simmer for 1 hour.

Meanwhile cook the vermicelli in a saucepan of boiling salted water around 8 -10 minutes or until cooked. Drain and mix with rest of margarine and olive oil.

Toast the almonds in a small dry frypan.

Take the lid off the tagine after 1 hour and cook for a further 15 minutes or until the chicken is tender the onions are almost melted and the sauce has thickened.

Transfer vermicelli to a platter or onto plates. Arrange chicken and onions on top and spoon any remaining sauce. Sprinkle slivered toasted almonds, icing sugar and cinnamon.


Anzac Biscuits Recipe

Tuesday 24 April 2012

I was reading the paper on Sunday and came across this Anzac Biscuits recipe in the paper. It is a Donna Hay Anzac biscuits recipe but I have altered it to suit those of us who are lactose intolerant.

Actually Donnas’ recipe requires two Anzac Biscuits to be sandwiched together and filled with a caramel filling which you just buy in a can from the supermarket. You can do that too but I decided I didn’t want the extra calories!

The flavour in these biscuits is all there, they are really easy to make and they taste as delicious as ever.

Make sure you keep the oven at 160C the whole time as the Anzac Biscuits need a low oven temperature to cook them without burning as several trays will go in and out constantly.

Make sure once you take the Anzac Biscuits out of the oven that you leave them to cool on the tray as they will be soft. Put in the next batch of biscuits.

Then once it’s time to take those out then you can take the cooled biscuits off the tray and onto a cooling rack to cool completely and put your next batch on that tray.

Biscuits made in honour of the ANZACS for Anzac Day the 25th of April.

Lest we forget!

Anzac Biscuits Recipe
Makes 18

1 cup rolled oats
1 cup plain flour
½ cup caster sugar
¾ cup desiccated coconut
140gm milk free margarine
¼ cup honey
1 tablespoon hot water
½ tspn bicardonate of soda

Preheat oven to 160C.

Place the oats, flour, sugar and coconut in a bowl and stir to combine.

Combine the margarine and honey in a small saucepan over low heat and stir until the margarine is melted.

Mix the water and bicarbonate of soda in a small bowl. 

Add it to the margarine mixture and stir to combine.

Pour the butter mixture over the flour mixture and stir well to combine.

Place ½ tablespoons of the mixture onto baking trays lined with non-stick baking paper allowing room to spread.

Flatten slightly and bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden.

REMINDER: Leave biscuits to cool on tray because when they come out of the oven they are still soft and need about 10 minutes to harden up.
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