Thursday, May 20, 2010

Sensational Saffron

This year we are trying to grow saffron.
This a photo of our first crop.


Its rapidly coming to the end of my favorite time of year Autumn. Cool crisp nights and warm days. Our fabulous tomato crop is at an end. It has been wonderful to have enough tomatoes to make into delicious preserves.
Try my recipe for Tomato and Chilli Jam which makes a great condiment for adding flavour to curries and stir frys.

Tomato and Chilli Jam


2kg ripe tomatoes, peeled and seeded
1kg raw sugar
120ml lemon juice
170 mls white wine vinegar
chillis to taste, use at least 10 mild to hot varieties
1T salt
80ml fish sauce


1. Place tomatoes and sugar into a bowl stir in sugar, cover and leave overnight.
2. Transfer to a large pan and add remaining ingredients, bring to the boil.
3. Simmer, stiring ocasionally, until thick.
4. Drop a teaspoon of the jam onto a plate that has been chilled in the freezer for a few minutes, return saucer to the freezer for a few mins to chill jam. Jam should wrinkle when pushed with the finger.
5. Pour into hot sterilised jars and seal. When cool, label and store in a cool dark place.


Saturday, May 1, 2010

Giant Zucchinis.......

As usual at this time of year we have had an abundance of home grown xzucchinis. Sometimes you miss one and next thing its a giant... well first thing remove the seeds and save them for your next crop. then slice or grate the flesh to use in your favourite zucchini recipes.
Here is a delicious version of moussaka made with zucchini instead of the usual eggplant/aubergine.


I large zucchini
1T oil
500 lamb mince
1 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 t cinnamon
4 tomatoes, chopped or a 400g can of crushed tomatoes
2T Butter
2T plain flour
1 t mustard
11/2 cups milk
salt and pepper
1 cup grated cheese

1 Slice zucchini into 1/2 cm slices lengthwise.
2 Heat oil in large saucepan and sweat onion 5 mins. add garlic and mince and cinnamon and stir until brown.
3. Add tomatoes and simmer 10 mins. Season to taste.
4. In a pan, melt butter. Remove from heat and stir in flour and mustard. Place back on heat and stir constantly for 1 min.
5. Remove from heat and blend in milk. Place back onto heat and stir constantly until boiling.
6. Assemble Moussaka; layer 1/2 the zucchini, then 1/2 the meat sauce. Sprinkle with cheese and layer with the rest of the zucchini slices and meat sauce. Cover with white sauce ( a little more milk can be blended through to make a pouring consistency) and top with cheese.
7. Bake at 180 deg C for 1hour. Serve with a green salad.