Monthly Archives: November 2012

Oat pancakes with roasted strawberries

Frank says, ‘If you have children, as I do, it’s great to get them involved adding flour and milk and cracking eggs; sure, the odd egg hits the floor, or milk spills on the bench, but that’s half the fun.’ We say, ‘!!!’

Fresh from the garden: strawberries
Recipe source: Frank Camorra in the Sydney Morning Herald
Serves: 8 or 24 tastes


  • Measures – jug, cup, ½ cup, tablespoon, teaspoon
  • Small roasting tray
  • Sifter or sieve
  • Bowls – large, medium
  • Fork, metal spoon
  • Scales
  • Non-stick frying pan
  • Ladle, tea towel
  • Plate & paper towel
  • Serving plates


  • 1½ cups milk
  • 1½ cups rolled oats (not quick oats)
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  • 2 punnets strawberries
  • 100g raw sugar
  • 100ml Canadian maple syrup

What to do:

  • Preheat oven to 200C. Pour the milk over oats and allow to stand for 10 minutes.
  • Wash strawberries and carefully hull them with a small knife. Mix them with the raw sugar and syrup. Pour into a small roasting tray and roast in oven for 15 minutes, until soft and juice starts to come out of strawberries.
  • After the 10 minutes for the oats is up, add sugar, oil and egg and beat with a fork. Sift in remaining dry ingredients and stir to form a smooth batter. If necessary, add 1-2 tablespoons of milk to thin mixture.
  • Place a non-stick frying pan over medium heat, add olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan and add a couple of separate large ladlefuls of the mixture and cook for 2 minutes each side, turning once, or until golden brown on both sides. Remove to a plate and keep warm with the folded tea towel. You may need to wipe the frying pan out a few times with paper towel and re-oil.
  • When all pancakes are cooked, divide among serving plates. Remove the strawberries from the oven and spoon over the pancakes.

Notes: What other fruits could be roasted this way? What is maple syrup?

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River Cottage garlicky flatbreads

Bondi kids love making dough: bread, pizza and pasta regularly grace our table! And we also love, love, love garlicky anything! This dish is great for mopping up any dip, sauce or soup, but especially good for the broad bean puree…

Fresh from the garden: garlic
Recipe source: Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Veg Every Day
Serves: 8 or 30 tastes


  • Measures – jug,tablespoon, teaspoon, ½ teaspoon
  • Stand mixer
  • Scales
  • Bowls – large, medium
  • Heavy non-stick frying pan
  • Rolling pins
  • Tongs
  • Tea towels
  • Plate & paper towel
  • Serving plates
Ingredients:For the magic dough:

  • 250g plain white flour
  • 250g strong white flour
  • 1½ level teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon instant dried yeast
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus a little extra for oiling

For the garlic oil:

  • About 120ml olive oil
  • 1 fat garlic clove

What to do:

For the magic dough:

  • Put the two flours into the bowl of the stand mixer with the salt and yeast. Mix well using the dough hook. Add the oil and 325ml warm water and mix to a rough dough. Knead for 5–10 minutes, until smooth. This is quite a loose and sticky dough, which is just as it should be – you get better-textured bread this way – so try not to add too much flour if you can help it, it will become less sticky as you knead.
  • Trickle a little oil into a clean bowl, add the kneaded dough and turn it in the oil so it is covered with a light film. Cover with a tea towel and leave in a warm place to rise until doubled in size – at least an hour, probably closer to two.
  • When the dough is well risen and puffy, tip it out and ‘knock it back’ by poking it with your outstretched fingers until it collapses to its former size. It’s now ready to be shaped to your will.

For the garlic oil:

  • Peel the garlic clove and very finely chop it. Combine the olive oil and garlic in a frying pan and place over a medium heat. You’re not going to fry it, just warm it through to take the edge off the garlic. So as soon as you see the first signs of a sizzle, pour the oil and garlic out of the pan into a small bowl to infuse. Wipe the frying pan clean.

For the flatbreads:

  • After ‘knocking back’ the risen dough, take lemon-sized balls and roll them into 8 flat circles, 2mm thick. Leave to rest for 5 minutes.
  • Meanwhile heat a heavy-based, non-stick frying pan over high heat until smoking hot.
  • Carefully lay one flatbread in the pan and cook for about 2 minutes, until bubbly on top and patched with brown spots on the base. Flip over and cook for 1-2 minutes more. Remove immediately to a plate and trickle with some of the garlicky oil. Scatter with a little flaked salt too. Repeat with all the dough. Cut the oiled flatbreads into wedges to serve.

Notes: Why do we leave the dough to rise? What is this process called?

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Broad bean puree

Alice says, ‘As the season progresses, the beans continue to mature, and they become larger and starchier. At this point they can be popped out of their pods, skinned and cooked into a luscious, bright green puree that I adore slathering on crisp croutons or serving alongside roasted meats.’

Fresh from the garden: broad beans, garlic, rosemary
Recipe source: Alice Waters, The Art of Simple Food
Serves: 8 or 28 tastes


  • Medium heavy-bottomed saucepan
  • Colander
  • Scales
  • Bowls – 3 big, medium
  • Chopping board & knife
  • Measures – jug
  • Paper towel
  • Food mill
  • Spoon
  • Serving bowls

  • 1.8kg broad beans in shell
  • 100ml olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 branch rosemary
  • Flaked salt
  • 100ml water
  • 50ml extra-virgin olive oil

 What to do:

  • Bring a pot of water to the boil as you shell the broad beans.
  • Blanch quickly in the boiling water and then drain & cool in a bowl of cold water for a minute. Drain and pop the beans out of their skins. Wipe the saucepan clean.
  • Peel and slice the garlic cloves. Wash and wipe dry the rosemary.
  • Heat 100ml olive oil in the dry saucepan, then add the broad beans, garlic, the branch of rosemary, a pinch of salt and 100ml water, and cook until the beans are very tender, stirring occasionally, and adding more water if necessary.
  • The beans are done when they can be crushed easily with the back of a spoon, about 15 minutes. Mash with a spoon or pass them through a food mill.
  • Stir in the 50ml extra-virgin olive oil. Taste and season with salt as needed.
  • Serve right away or at room temperature.

Notes: What is another name for broad beans? What would be good to serve with the puree?

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Carrot and fennel soup

We love all the different combinations of vegetables that the seasons throw at us… and adding various spices can change everything! This is a lovely silky variation of soup…

Fresh from the garden: carrot, fennel, onion, thyme, coriander
Recipe source: Melissa
Serves: 6 or 24 tastes


  • Kettle
  • Chopping board & knife
  • Scales
  • Potato peelers
  • Graters
  • Paper towel
  • Stockpot & lid
  • Measures: jug, tablespoon, teaspoon
  • Bowls – big, medium, small
  • Wooden spoon
  • Medium heavy-bottomed saucepan
  • Stick blender
  • Serving bowls

  • 2 onions
  • 1 large thyme sprig
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 50g butter
  • 1kg carrots
  • A head of fennel
  • 1.25 litre stock (or 1 tablespoon bouillon & 1.25 litre boiling water)
  • Cooking salt
  • Flaked salt and black pepper
  • A little bunch of coriander

 What to do:

  • Fill the kettle if using and set to boil.
  • Peel and thinly slice the onions. Wash and pat dry the thyme sprig and strip off the leaves.
  • Melt the butter in the stockpot, then add the onions, the cumin and thyme, and cook over a low heat until tender for about 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, wash & peel the carrots, then grate them and reserve in a big bowl.
  • Wash, then top and tail the fennel, discarding the discoloured outer layer if desired. Slice the fennel as thin as you can.
  • After the 10 minutes, add the carrots & fennel to the onion and add a teaspoon of salt. Stir, then cook gently for 5 minutes with the lid on.
  • Add the stock or bouillon and water, bring to the boil then lower the heat and simmer until the carrots & fennel are tender, about 20 minutes.
  • Wash the coriander and spin dry. Pick the leaves from the stalks and very finely chop the stalks. Gently chop the leaves but leave them quite big.
  • When done, blitz with the stick blender, season to taste and serve into your bowls. Garnish with the chopped coriander.
  • Serve right away or chill overnight to serve cold the next day, perhaps with a little sour cream drizzled in…

Notes: What is bouillon? How do you make stock? Why do we leave the coriander leaves quite big?

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Fish-free salad Nicoise

Hugh says, ‘Without any tuna or anchovies, I guess you might upset the good people of Nice a bit with this one, but it is an exceptionally delicious and substantial salad – with plenty going on.’

Fresh from the garden: new potatoes, green beans, eggs, small lettuce leaves, olives, basil, garlic
Recipe source: Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Veg Every Day
Serves: 4 or 24 tastes


  • Scales
  • Chopping board & knife
  • Saucepans – med, small
  • Colander
  • Small jar & lid
  • Measures: tablespoon, teaspoon
  • Salad spinner
  • Serving plates

  • 500g new (baby) potatoes
  • 200g green beans
  • 8 large eggs at room temperature
  • A small handful baby lettuce leaves
  • A handful small black olives
  • About 12 basil leaves
  • Flaked salt and black pepper

For the dressing:

  • ½ small garlic clove
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • A pinch of sugar

 What to do:

  • Wash the beans and potatoes – do not peel them! Tail the beans & chop into 3cm lengths.
  • You can cook small new potatoes whole, but cut any larger ones in half or smaller, so they’re all roughly the same size. Cover with cold water in the medium saucepan, add salt and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 8-12 minutes until tender, adding the beans for the last 4 minutes. Drain, tip into a bowl and leave to cool.
  • To cook the eggs, bring a small saucepan of water to the boil. Add the eggs, return to a simmer, then cook for 7 minutes. Lightly crack the shells and run the eggs under cold water for a minute or two to stop the cooking, then leave to cool. Peel and quarter the eggs.
  • To make the dressing, put all the ingredients into a screw-topped jar, seasoning with salt and pepper, and shake until emulsified.
  • Halve, quarter or thickly slice the cooked potatoes. Put them back with the beans, add some of the dressing and toss gently together.
  • Wash the lettuce & basil leaves in several changes of water. Spin-dry and then gently toss in a bowl with a little of the dressing.
  • Arrange the lettuce, potatoes, and beans on your serving plates and distribute the olives and eggs over the salad. Scatter with torn basil leaves, trickle over the remainingdressing and grind over some pepper. Serve straight away.

Notes: What does emulsified mean? What does the adjective Niçoise mean?

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Kitchen News – 22nd November 2012

Ladies and gentlemen, we’re starting our descent into Christmas. Buckle your seat belts and stow your meal trays, it’s going to be a bumpy ride…! Every year I usually get so excited at this time of year, especially with two young children around, but this year – because the decorations have been up in shopping centres since before Halloween – I don’t get that same thrill of planning, decorating & boiling puddings… I’m hoping that last-few-weeks-itis will soon kick in at school and propel me forward into the land of gaudy baubles and fake long beards…

Meanwhile back at the ranch it’s been business as usual preparing the most yummy spring dishes. I’ve got to say it really is amazing to watch our Bondi children at work over their chopping boards, slicing with precision and peeling, stirring, measuring, weighing, clearing, washing up and working in teams – and especially trying new foods (like the artichokes – what a hit they were!) to the point of licking the bowls! I even had a gorgeous chap from 2B come to me after yesterday’s class to say that he thought the meal & class was ‘superb’. Bless!

And here’s what he ate: Hugh’s fish-free Niçoise salad; Alice’s broad bean puree (yep those plants are still going!); Hugh’s garlicky flatbreads; Frank’s oat pancakes with roasted strawberries; and my carrot and fennel soup… yes I admit I’ve been going a bit crazy on Hugh F-W’s Veg Every Day but the latest addition to the household is Yotam’s Jerusalem (thank you Emma & Grace!) so expect some exotica here soon!

PS I’m almost up to date with all the recipes, hooray!

PPS the day dawned bright and clear for the first Makers & Growers market last week – it was a quiet soft opening but the produce was fab & atmosphere lovely… come down if you’re up & about early, I’ll be there with my organic sizzle & chilli jams and will also be supporting the school in selling the cookbook, Flourish bags and festive wrapping paper on my stall xx

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We’re at the Makers & Growers Market at Bondi PS (Wellington St, Bondi)

We’re at the market each and every Saturday from 8am at Bondi Public School, 5 Wellington St! Come and make our early mornings worthwhile by saying hi and picking up one of our fabulous posh sausage sizzles!

On the blackboard menu this week: Farm Panaroma (Sean’s farm at Bilpin) beef and barley – organic, preservative-free – snag with our own Jam Girls tomato chilli jam, rocket and Iggy’s roll… need we say more?


Oh yep, sorry! $7 gets you all that!

And you can also pick up your own jar or two of our award winning chilli jam to take home, as well as our roasted beetroot jam and onion jam too… and we’re also the place to pick up some Bondi Public School goodies: we’ve got copies of the ‘A Year In The Kitchen Garden’ cookbook, some of the fab ‘Flourish’ bags designed by the children – great for shopping and/or beach – and some limited edition Bondi PS Xmas wrapping paper… Grab it while you can!

See you on Saturday x


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Rocket, fennel and lentil salad

I love every recipe from this book, there’s so much inspiration! I love it almost as much as our book!

From the garden: rocket, fennel, parsley, onion, lemon
Recipe source: Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall in Veg Every Day
Serves: 4 at home or 20 tastes


  • 1 small saucepan & lid
  • Colander or sieve
  • Chopping board & knife
  • Citrus juicer
  • Jar with lid
  • Bowls – large, med, small
  • Measures – jug, teaspoon
  • Salad spinner
  • Serving bowls

  • 125g little green lentils
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ small onion
  • A few parsley stalks
  • A large fennel bulb
  • About 75g rocket

For the dressing

  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • A lemon
  • 120ml olive oil
  • A pinch of sugar
  • Flaked salt & black pepper


 What to do:

  • Put the lentils in the saucepan and add plenty of water. Bring to the boil and simmer for a minute only, then drain. Return the lentils to the pan and pour on just enough water to cover them. Add the bay leaf, onion and parsley stalks. Bring back to a very gentle simmer, and cook slowly for about half an hour, until tender but not mushy.
  • Meanwhile, to make the dressing: zest the lemon and then cut in half and juice. Add these and the rest of the dressing ingredients to the jar, put the lid on and shake until emulsified.
  • When the lentils are done, drain them well and discard the herbs and onion. While still warm, combine with a good half of the dressing. Leave until cooled, then taste and adjust the seasoning; you could add a little more salt, sugar, pepper or lemon juice if needed.
  • Trim the fennel, removing the tough outer layer (unless they are young and very fresh). Halve the bulb vertically, then slice as thinly as you can, tip to base.
  • Wash and spin dry the rocket, then pile about two-thirds of the lentils into wide serving bowls. Scatter over the rocket and fennel and trickle over the rest of the dressing. Scatter over the remaining lentils and serve.

Notes:What does emulsified mean? What other sort of lentils are there? What does fennel smell like?

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Lettuce, silverbeet and parsley soup

This is a great way to use up an abundance of spring lettuces – and an especially good way of using up sprouting ones that may be a bit bitter as cooking them softens their flavour as well as texture!

Fresh from the garden: lettuce, silverbeet, parsley, potatoes, spring onions, bay
Recipe source: Melissa
Serves: 6 or 24 tastes


  • Chopping board
  • Large knife
  • Salad spinner
  • Potato peelers
  • Bowls – 2 large, 2 medium
  • Garlic press
  • Large stockpot
  • Wooden spoon
  • Handheld mixer
  • Ladle
  • Serving bowls

  • 4 spring onions
  • 1kg waxy potatoes
  • 1 big bunch lettuce, such as curly endive or sprouting cos
  • 1 big bunch silverbeet
  • 1 handful parsley
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 60g unsalted butter
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1.5 litres water
  • Flaked salt and black pepper

What to do:

  • Wash and trim spring onions, removing & discarding the tough outer layer. Slice into 1cm bits.
  • Wash and scrub potatoes, peel & cut into 2cm cubes.
  • Wash the lettuce leaves & parsley in several changes of water and spin dry. Chop finely.
  • Wash the silverbeet in several changes of water & shake dry. Remove & chop up the stems & the leaves but keep separate.
  • Peel and press garlic cloves.
  • Melt butter in the large stockpot over medium heat and sauté spring onion and garlic for 2 minutes.
  • Add potato and bay leaves and turn so that the potato sweats in the butter. Stir with the wooden spoon.
  • Add the water, bring to a simmer over medium heat then cover and cook gently over low heat for 10 minutes, then add the sliced silverbeet stalks.
  • After 2 minutes check that the potato is tender, then stir in lettuce, parsley and silverbeet leaves, increase heat to medium and simmer for 2 minutes. Remove the bay leaves and turn heat off, adding salt to taste and a good grind of pepper.
  • With dry hands, plug in the handheld mixer and carefully whizz the soup until it is silky smooth.
  • Taste for correct seasoning and ladle into bowls to serve.

Notes: What other vegetables can be used for soup? How many different procedures are there in this recipe? Why do we want the potato to ‘sweat’?

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Soft polenta with broad beans and spring onions

This dish makes for a great little lunch! Feel free to shave a little parmesan over too if you want…

From the garden: broad beans, onions, spring onions, parsley, lemon, garlic, sweetcorn
Recipe source: Melissa
Serves: 6 at home or 24 tastes


  • Chopping board & knife
  • Small paring knife
  • Garlic press
  • Scales
  • Bowls – large, med, small
  • 1 heavy-based saucepan& lid
  • 1 small saucepan & lid
  • Colander
  • Measuring jug
  • Wooden spoon
  • Non-stick frying pan & lid
  • Serving bowls

  • 1 corn cob
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 100g coarse polenta
  • 1kg broad beans in shell
  • 1 onion
  • 6 spring onions
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small bunch parsley
  • ½ tablespoon vegetable bouillon
  • 100ml boiling water
  • A lemon
  • Flaked salt and black pepper

What to do:

  • Peel the husks from the corn, then slice the corn from the cob. Peel and crush 2 cloves of the garlic with the garlic press. Add the corn and garlic to the heavy based saucepan with 500ml water and bring to the boil over a moderate flame.
  • Measure the polenta & then rain it in to the corn water, stirring. Cover & reduce to a mere simmer 15 mins, stirring every few minutes.
  • Meanwhile fill the small saucepan with water & set to boil on high heat.
  • Pod the broad beans, discarding the outer shell into the compost, and add beans to the boiling water. Fill a large bowl with cold water and have ready.
  • Boil the broad beans for 3 minutes, drain and then immediately refresh in the bowl of cold water for 30 seconds. Drain again and double-pod by slipping the outer shell off into the compost. Reserve beans.
  • Place the bouillon in to the measuring jug and carefully add 300ml boiling water, stir.
  • Peel the brown onion and finely chop. Wash the spring onions and chop into 1cm lengths. Peel the remaining 4 cloves of garlic and finely slice. Wash and spin the parsley dry, pick and chop. Zest the lemon and then cut in half and squeeze one half.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in the frying pan and begin to cook the chopped brown onion for 3-4 minutes over a medium to high heat until lightly golden, then add the garlic and cook gently for a further minute.
  • Now add the podded broad beans, the chopped spring onion and the hot stock and place a lid on the pan. Turn the heat down and simmer gently for 2 minutes.
  • Take the lid off and increase the heat to medium. Continue to simmer till the liquid has reduced and become slightly syrupy – about 5 minutes. Sprinkle over the parsley and lemon zest, add lemon juice to taste, and stir to incorporate.
  • When the polenta is ready, remove the lid and season well. Spoon onto serving bowls, and then add the broad beans with the juices poured over.
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