Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The joy of reading

I am incredibly grateful that Ginger Rose is such an enthusiastic reader, because The Little Prince has been a little slow to become enthused by books. He's only just starting to take an interest - and gets the most pleasure out of books when he's sharing them with his big sister.
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Tonight's dinner

Tonight's dinner will include a salad. I know it won't be appreciated or eaten, but I'm determined to at least make an effort towards using the actual salad vegetables we've grown!
We'll be stir-frying broccoli, spring onions, green beans (first pick of the season) and a lovely bright red capsicum. I went out looking for a ripe tomato (perhaps tomorrow!) and found this tiny bell capsicum had gone red without a hint of warning.
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Further adventures of The Little Prince

Guess who can reach the table now? And while his cereal was totally uninteresting when being fed to him, apparently self-feeding is the new developmental stage. A very very messy stage. I am so glad we've got a puppy to help clean up!
The sandpit is very popular this year - Possum thought The Little Prince and puppy's combined efforts at hole digging deserved a reward. Sadly, the puppy wasn't as willing to be buried as the baby.
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Chinese cabbage stir fry

We harvested the first of the Chinese cabbages last night. The leaves had been very visibly eaten all the way through, and I discovered 13 earwigs in the washing process, so suspect I've identified the culprits.
I found a nifty online stir fry recipe, and decided to serve it up alongside the BBQ chops. The quantity of cabbage only just fitted into our electric frypan, which I elected to use instead of the electric wok because of the greater space available.
The result was quite tasty, but a bit watery. I think it would have benefitted from a little longer stir frying to drive off the moisture - and I suspect my cabbages are larger than the recipe calls for as there was easily enough for half a dozen big eaters!

1 large Chinese cabbage (or use 2-3 cups Asian greens per person including bok choy, tatsoi, Chinese cabbage, Chinese broccoli)
2 tablespoons fresh ginger
1 tablespoon fresh garlic
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 cup chicken stock
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
pinch sugar
1 tablespoon potato starch (or cornflour)
2 tablespoons water
sweet chilli sauce, to taste
sesame seeds
Wash the cabbage thoroughly, then chop into about 5cm pieces. Finely grate the ginger and garlic.

Put the oil into a hot wok. Add the cabbage; toss for a few seconds until heated. Put a lid on the wok and steam for 1 minute.
Remove the cabbage and set aside.

Add the ginger and garlic to the same pan. Cook on medium heat until fragrant (2 minutes). Add the chicken stock, oyster sauce, soy sauce and sugar.

In another bowl mix the potato starch with cold water, then add to the pan. Add sweet chilli sauce to taste.

Fold in the cooked cabbage, then remove from the heat.

Serve with a sprinkle of sesame seeds over the top.
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Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Growing up together

Every boy deserves a dog, and The Little Prince knows just where his puppy likes her tummy tickled. They love to wrestle with each other, and Suki is already more careful with the baby than any of the other children.
They have a great time in the sandpit together. Suki is a better digger (note the very respectable hole), but Andrew does his fair share of throwing sand Suki's way.
And at the end of a hard day's play, there's nothing quite like curling up for a snooze on the couch together. How sweet is that?

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Garden greens

This is my favourite dish from the garden so far this year. I boiled some silverbeet and broccoli, then drained them. Added olive oil to the pot and gently browned up some garlic and spring onion. Then I tossed the silverbeet and broccoli back in, stirred it around and tipped it all into a serving dish.

Very tasty!
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Saturday, December 06, 2008

Yoghurt Cake

I had to dig through my cupboard to find the book containing this recipe, so thought I'd post it here for easy reference. It's such a quick and easy cake to whip up, and we always have the ingredients handy.

Preheat oven to 170C (for my fan forced oven, this works well) and grease and line a cake tin.

Toss into the blender:

250ml vegetable oil
160g sugar

and blend. Add:

225g yoghurt and mix again. Add:

2 eggs
225g self-raising flour
2 tsp vanilla

and blend again, using a spatula to mix in the flour if necessary.

Spoon into the cake tin and bake for 50 - 55 minutes. Cool then sprinkle with icing sugar to serve.

Serves 2 adults and 5 children for afternoon tea with one slice left over :).