Courgette (Zucchini/BabyMarrow) Tartlets

These little tarts make a good snack or even a light lunch or supper if served with a salad.  There is not much flour in these which makes them soft.  They don’t rise very much either.  I would best describe them as mini quiches.  Garnish them with a blob of sour cream and chopped crisp bacon.

5 ml olive oil

3 or 4 rashers of bacon, chopped

1 medium onion, chopped

2 medium courgettes, grated

30 ml flour

3 extra-large eggs, whisked

500 ml grated cheddar cheese

salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 180 C and spray a patty pan with non-stick spray.

Heat the oil in a pan and fry the bacon until done.  Remove the bacon and add the onions.  Fry until soft.  Put the bacon and onion in a bowl, add the grated courgettes, flour, eggs and cheese.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Spoon into the prepared patty pan hollows and bake for 15 – 20 minutes until golden brown.

garnish with a little sour cream and crisp bacon and serve warm.

Makes 10 – 12

Sausage Meat Roll

My friend Sheila gave me this recipe (and a few others) to try out for this blog so I decided to make this one first.  I must say it was really delicious and I’ll add this to my favourites.  I made this using the tomato option with 3 tomatoes but next time I will use two and drain the tomatoes even more as the mixture was a bit moist.

8 sausages – take out of skins

2 chopped apples  OR 6 – 8 chopped prunes and chopped bacon  OR 2 small (or 1 large) skinned tomatoes, very well drained

2 chopped onions

5 ml dried sage or basil

salt and pepper

1 roll readymade flaky pastry

Mix sausage meat with the other ingredients.

Roll out the pastry into a rectangle (or halve the pastry and make two smaller ones) and spread the sausage mixture over this, leaving a border all round.  Dampen the edges and roll up like a swiss roll.  Seal the edges.  Brush the top with beaten egg.

Lift onto a large flat baking sheet and bake at 180 C for about an hour.

You might find it easier if you halve the pastry and made two smaller rolls.  I will definitely do this next time, especially seeing I prefer the edge pieces!

Serves 5 – 6

Crumbed Baked Haddock

This dish has a lot of flavour and is easy to prepare when you don’t have much time.  You can leave out the onion, garlic  and peppers if you wish, and even the crumbs on top in order to make it even simpler.  In fact that is the way I have always prepared this dish but today I thought I would add these additional ingredients which greatly improved an already flavoursome dish.  Either way it’s a winner.


500 g frozen smoked haddock fillets (no need to thaw)

chutney

1 onion, sliced

half a green bell pepper (sliced)

2 cloves garlic, crushed

cheese sauce

crumbs (I used a mixture of breadcrumbs and seasoned cornflake crumbs)

finely grated parmesan

 

Place the frozen smoked haddock fillets in an ovenproof dish.  Spread a little chutney on each.

Fry the onion and green pepper in a little oil.  When almost done turn down the heat and add the garlic.  Fry for a minute or two more and then place this mixture on top of the fish.

Make a cheese sauce and pour this over the fish and vegetables.

Mix the breadcrumbs and cornflake crumbs together and sprinkle on top.  Lastly sprinkle a little parmesan cheese over this and bake at 180 C for 30 minutes.

Fish Lasagne

This is one of the tastiest dishes I have made in a long time.  I am still licking my lips and wishing I could have another small helping but the waistline says NO.  In my opinion this dish is far nicer than the normal beef lasagne and less trouble, as the “meat” part doesn’t need cooking and neither does the topping.  The recipe calls for spinach egg noodles but I didn’t have any so I used Lokshen which looks like fettuccini.  It’s the thin one that’s rolled into little balls that look like birds’ nests!  Sometimes a substitution turns out better than the real thing and in my opinion this was far nicer than the spinach ribbon noodles.

I will probably be rapped over the knuckles by an Italian for saying this but I do not like my pasta “al dente”.  I like it soft and I hang my head in shame but every man to his own taste.  ( I also like to cook it in the microwave – another rap across the knuckes!) Perhaps it’s because I used this pasta instead of the specified one but I found the quantity was a bit too much so I kept some back and will use it with one of those ready prepared packaged sauces at some stage.

My son is a pasta fanatic but is not a huge fan of fish so this dish will definitely cause a bit of a dilemma for him when he comes home from work!  I have a feeling he will love it though.  [Note after publishing the pasta lover won the dilemma.  He had one huge helping and came back for an ever bigger one and gave two thumbs up.  So this one comes highly recommended!]

This recipe appears in an Afrikaans recipe book I have which is called “Huisegenoot se Wenresepte 2”.  Directly translated it’s Huisgenoot’s (name of the magazine) Winning Recipes Book 2.  The recipes were all sent in by readers of the magazine.


375 g spinach egg noodles (I used Lokshen – see explanation above)

15 ml oil

FOR THE FILLING

Fish Lasagne before baking

oil for frying

1 large onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1 can (410 g) tomato soup

125 ml water

10 ml sugar

5 ml salt

1 ml pepper

2 cans (170 g each) shredded tuna in water, well drained

FOR THE TOPPING

Fish Lasagne after baking

1 tub (250 g)  smooth cottage cheese

250 ml cream

250 ml cheddar cheese, grated

extra cheese and paprika to sprinkle on top

Cook the pasta in lots of salted boiling water in the normal way.  Drain and mix with oil.  Set aside.

Meanwhile heat the oil in a large frying pan and fry the onion till almost soft and then add the garlic and fry a bit longer.  Add the soup, water, sugar, salt and pepper.  Heat this to boiling point, stir occasionally and simmer for 10 minutes over low heat.

Flake the tuna and stir into the soup mixture.  Set aside.

Mix the cottage cheese, cream and cheddar cheese together.  Set aside.

Put half the pasta in a greased ovenproof dish (20 x 20 x 5 cm).  Put half the fish mixture on top and then half the cheese sauce.  Repeat the layers once more.

Sprinkle the extra cheese and paprika on top.

Bake at 180 C for 30 minutes or until the cheese is golden brown.

Bobotie

For those followers of this blog who are not South African, Bobotie is a traditional South African dish of curried mince with an egg custard topping baked in the oven.  There are many versions of this dish but this one is beautifully moist and full of flavour and I have been making it regularly for decades.  Although it is well into summer at the moment the weather has turned unseasonally cold so tonight was the ideal night for this dish which warms from the inside out.

Uncooked bobotie with egg custard


1 onion, chopped

30 ml oil

500 g extra lean ground beef

1 slice bread soaked in a bit of water

5 – 10 ml medium curry powder

5 ml apricot jam

5 ml vinegar

salt and pepper to taste

50 ml chutney

50 ml tomato sauce (ketchup)

25 ml Worcestershire sauce

2 bay leaves

For the egg custard:

2  eggs, beaten

50 ml milk

Make a paste by mixing the curry powder, apricot jam and vinegar together.

Fry the onion in the oil.  Add the meat and brown.  Squeeze the water out of the bread and add.

Add the curry mixture, seasoning, chutney, tomato sauce and Worcestershire sauce and mix well.

Put into ovenproof dish.  Mix eggs and milk together and pour over the meat.

Bake at 180 C till brown – about half an hour.

I usually double this recipe and freeze one.  Freeze before baking and before adding the egg custard.  When you want to use it thaw first and then put the egg custard on top and bake as instructed.

I usually serve this dish with butternut and I came across a blog with the most delicious recipe for butternut which you see in this picture.  It is smooth, slightly sweet and spicy and is cooked in the pressure cooker.  I will most definitely make it like this from now on.  Here is the link.

http://www.flanboyanteats.com/cooking_recipes/butternut-squash-with-a-serious-kick/

Macaroni Cheese

Monday night is pasta night in our household and this macaroni dish is a firm favourite.  It is so simple to make and very tasty.

Macaroni Cheese 1

300 g macaroni

2 eggs

500 ml milk

salt and pepper to taste

pinch mustard powder

5 -10 ml Robertson’s Garlic , Parmesan and Oreganum Seasoning

1 round of feta cheese

grated parmesan cheese

grated cheddar cheese

Boil the macaroni in salt water, drain and put into a greased ovenproof dish.

Beat the eggs, milk, salt, pepper, mustard powder and seasoning and pour over the macaroni.  Crumble the feta cheese on top and sprinkle the parmesan and cheddar on top as well.

Bake for about 40 minutes at 180 C until the cheese has browned.

Meatballs in Curry Fruit Sauce

I have copied many of my mother-in-law’s recipes over the years and this is one of them.  I can remember right after my husband and I were married thirty-something years ago how we used to go to his parents’ house every Friday night for dinner and we always got a fabulous meal, lovingly prepared by her.  She was an excellent cook and baker and way back then my cooking skills were very limited.  This recipe appeared in an Afrikaans magazine called Rooi Rose 35 years ago and won first prize in a competition.

Meatballs in Curry Fruit Sauce 2


Meatballs in Curry Fruit Sauce 3


1 thick slice white bread

250 ml water

500 grams beef mince

1 egg

1 ml nutmeg

1 ml cloves

7 ml salt

pepper

FRUIT SAUCE

2 onions,  finely choppedMeatballs in Curry Fruit Sauce

15 ml butter

15 milliliters flour

15ml curry powder

60ml red vinegar

15 ml lemon juice

325 ml water

45 ml apricot jam

5 bananas

2  grated applesMeatballs in Curry Fruit Sauce 1

15  ml sugar

2 ml salt

Soak the bread in the water and squeeze out excess.  Mix with the mince.

Add the beaten egg, nutmeg, cloves, salt and pepper and work it all together with your hands.

Roll the meat into balls and coat them with flour.  Place loosely in a deep greased dish that has a lid.

FRUIT SAUCE

Fry the onion in the butter until light brown.  Stir in the flour and curry powder and add the vinegar, lemon juice and water slowly and stir well.

Add the jam, sugar and 3 of the bananas, sliced, as well as the grated apples.  Cook slowly and keep stirring until the bananas are soft.

Slice the remainder of the bananas and place between the meatballs.  Pour the sauce over the meatballs and bake about an hour and a half in a moderate oven (180 C) with the lid on.

Serves 4 – 6

N.B.  The sauce can also be served with other meat or fish or sliced hard-boiled eggs on toast.  For curried meat:  Cook the meat in a pressure cooker.  Make the sauce and add 125 ml sultanas.  Add to the meat and cook for half an hour.  (Be careful, it burns very easily!)