Imbolc to Alban Eiler 2011: In the kitchen

Felice is the kitchen wizard at The Creek, so she’s probably best placed to write this part, but here’s what I like about this 8th:

Salad with snow peas for afternoon tea

Salad with snow peas for afternoon tea. No nasturtiums on this one.

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Yakon with hard cheese with pre-dinner drinks.  Peel the freshly dug yakon, cut into rounds, and use instead of crackers to hold the cheese up.

Salad straight from the garden, with rocket, lettuce, snow peas and thinly sliced silverbeet and ruby chard.  You can put a couple of nasturtium flowers on for decoration and a peppery taste.

“Salsa verde” as a side dish, or with kefir cheese on a sandwich.  Pick a whole pile of mixed herbs and greens, chop finely, and squeeze citrus juice of some sort on.

It’s end of citrus season, so time to use up the last of the good fruit in jams and cordials.   The Creek specialties are grapefruit and lime marmalade, and lemon cordial.

Teas with custom mixes of lemon myrtle, mint, nettle, rosemary and comfrey.  The TGA (Therapeutic Goods Administration) says comfrey isn’t good for you and not to eat it, but to me it seems quite clear that the TGA has been bought by Big Pharma, so I don’t believe them when they try and scare people away from plants that have a history of traditional beneficial use.

Steamed root vegies (yakon, potatoes, sweet potatoes) and broccoli/cauli/greens with garlic chives, salt and butter.  (Or with olive oil, salt and vinegar).

Quick lentil soup:  Fry onions, garlic and chilli in olive oil.  Add 1L stock (we use vegie stock, but meat stock would work too), 1 cup lentils, several chopped tomatoes and a pile of chopped silverbeet/chard.  Bring to boil, simmer 20 mins.  Serve with a dollop of kefir curd and a pile of chop mixed herbs/greens.  Fresh bread goes well with this too.

Omelette incorporating any of the following:  greens, broccoli, root vegies, mushrooms.  Serve with dollop of kefir curd (like sour cream, but healthier and easier to make at home) and a generous pile of chopped herbs.

Felice’s specialty is pizza-from-scratch with ditto.   In a pinch, I can have a bash at any of the other things we cook around this time, but Felice’s pizza is a master concoction that I have no hope of ever replicating.  Perhaps I can persuade her to blog the recipe.

Fermented oat porridge.  Tastes much nicer than it sounds!   While one person is cooking porridge, the other preps the porridge for the next day:

In a wide-mouthed jar, put

  • a bit more than ½ cup of oats per person
  • the same volume of water (let’s call this volume “V” cups)
  • a couple of tbsps of kefir whey.

The next day, boil V cups water with a couple of pinches of salt.  Add the soaked oats, bring to boil and simmer for a few mins.  If I’m cooking, it’s a few mins less than if F is cooking.  Add honey and cream (best) or milk (second best).  Tastes like honey yoghurt porridge.

Roast vegies including roots vegies, broccoli and cauli.

Stir-fried greens, broc, cauli, sweet potato with buckwheat or quinoa.

Chips!  Cut potatoes, sweet potatoes and green bananas (yes really) into slices, then shallow fry in the largest frying pan you’ve got.  Green bananas are a bugger to peel (we use a knife to slice off the skin) but taste a lot like potatoes when you fry them.

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