I have decided to go a little light on the cooking bit and do some healthy stuff for a while, because all the baking and the fancy food is beginning to show on me, especially around the hips. As it is i am lazy to cook and click and type it out, so imagine how its gonna be now? Worse? I am not going to abscond, but I'm gonna limit my baking to once a week and include loads of veggies and fruits to our diet. I am opening the blog out to anyone who wants to chip in a few recipes of their own, so the blog doesn't come to a stand still. So please do send me a recipe with a pic and il put it up, and its just not the bloggers I'm talking about..I know so many friends of mine who are awesome cooks and i might have to push them a bit to send in stuff, but i am gonna do that. For now here's a brunch special which is almost a week old. I whipped it up last Saturday when we had a friend staying over and Ro and W agreed to help me with it and so it wasn't really a big deal at all. I completely bossed over them and got most of the work done...cheeky me huh?
Wholemeal flour- 1 cup
Brown Sugar- 1/4 cup
Baking Powder- 3/4 tsp
Baking Soda- /4 tsp
Salt- 1/4 tsp
Buttermilk- 1 cup
Vegetable oil- 1 tbsp
Vanilla extract- 1 tsp
Mix together all the dry ingredients (first 5) in a bowl.
In another bowl whisk the eggs and mix the buttermilk, vanilla and oil till well incorporated.
Add this to the dry ingredients and stir well. Its ok if the pancake batter is a bit lumpy. Keep aside for about 5 to 10 minutes.
Heat a non-stick pan over medium heat and pour in a ladle full and cook till you see bubbles appearing on top. Carefully flip over and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes.
Berry Compote (adapted from the Low Gi-Diet Cookbook):
Mixed berries- 200 gms (i used blueberries and raspberries)
Brown sugar- 1 tbsp
Honey/ maple syrup- enough to drizzle
Put the berries in a saucepan and gently heat until they are warm and have softened. Add the brown sugar and give it on for a little longer, just to get the sugar melted.
Stack the pancakes and serve topped with the warm berries and a few drizzles of honey or maple syrup or even whipped cream :)
Notes: Pancakes are horrible once cold. So try serving them as and when its done.
The berry compote may be a bit tangy, but since you are serving with honey or syrup over pancake, it should be fine.
Oven Roasted Tomatoes
Cherry tomatoes on the vine- 250gms
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)- 2 tsp
Salt and pepper- for seasoning
Balsamic vinegar- 1 tsp (optional)
Preheat the oven to 180C and place the tomatoes on a baking tray lined with baking paper.
Drizzle with vingar (if using) and EVOO generously and season with salt and pepper. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or till the tomatoes are soft.
Sausage Veggie Bake
Onion- 1, thinly sliced
Garlic- 3 pods, mashed
Broccoli- 1/2 cup
Cauliflower- 1/2 cup
Carrots- 1/4 cup
Spinach- 1 cup
Sausages- 1 cup, chopped into in inch pieces
Salt and pepper- to season
Extra Mature Cheddar Cheese- 1/2 cup (grated)
Oil- 1 tbsp
Colman's Cheddar Cheese Sauce- 1 sachet
Blanch the cauliflower and broccoli florets. Keep aside.
Clean the spinach leaves, drain and transfer them to a bowl and close with a lid. Cook in the microwave on high for about 2 minutes. Drain off the water and keep aside.
Cook the sausages in some oil. Drain on kitchen towels. Keep aside
Heat the oil in a frying pan and throw in the onions and garlic. Cook till transparent and fragrant. Add the broc, cauli, carrot and spinach, season with salt and pepper, cover and cook till done. Just before you take it off the fire, add the cooked sausages and give a final stir.
Transfer into an oven proof casserole dish.
Make the Colman's cheese sauce as per instructions. Boil the milk and add the contents of the sachet and stir till you get a lump-free mix. I went ahead and added some cheddar cheese as well.
Pour the cheese mix over the veggies in the casserole dish, sprinkle the rest of the Cheddar cheese and bake in a pre-heated oven (170C) for 15 to 20 minutes. Serve with garlic bread or on its own. It is very creamy and i wouldn't say its healthy healthy, but i feel a whole lot better at having all these veggies :)
Here are a few bakes i have tried: Wonders with leftovers, Fish Bake' Pie, Tuna and Pasta Bake, Fennel and Spinach Gratin
Notes: You can basically add any veggie of your choice...beans, mushrooms, potatoes, leek etc and go fully vegetarian or add chicken, mince meat, bacon etc. and make a whole non-veg meal out of it too. If you add pasta to the above recipe, it can be a whole meal on its own.
You can make your own cheese sauce/ white sauce. The recipe can be found here.