Spicy Pineapple-Zucchini Bread

This is a delicious loaf cake which I found in a book called “Sunset Cookbook of Breads”.  It is nice and moist and full of flavour and keeps well.  This recipe makes 2 loaves so you can keep one in the freezer for another time.  The recipe can be halved but I always like to make two and have one on standby in the freezer.

3 eggs

250 ml oil

500 ml sugar

10 ml vanilla essence

500 ml zucchini (baby marrow/courgettes) unpeeled and coarsely grated

1 can crushed pineapple, well drained

750 ml flour

10 ml bicarbonate of soda

5 ml salt

3 ml baking powder

7 ml ground cinnamon

4 ml ground nutmeg

250 ml currants

250 ml pecans or walnuts, chopped

In a large bowl beat the eggs until frothy, add oil, sugar and vanilla and continue beating until mixture is thick and foamy.  Stir in zucchini and pineapple.

In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, soda, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, nuts and currants until thoroughly blended.  Stir gently into zucchini mixture just until blended.  Spoon batter equally into two greased and flour-dusted 9 x 5 inch (23 x 12,7 cm) loaf pans.

Bake at 180 C for 1 hour or until breads begin to pull away from sides of pans and a skewer comes out clean.

Cool in pans for 10 minutes, then turn out onto racks to cool completely.

Makes 2 loaves

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Onion Scones

This recipe is from a book I have which is called “Fit for Life II – Living Health – The Complete Health Programme” by Harvey and Marilyn Diamond.  They are as light as a feather and delicious and can be served with soup or a salad, or on their own.  I like them buttered with a sprinkling of cheese.

500 ml wholewheat flour (Nutty Wheat)

5 ml baking powder

5 ml bicarbonate of soda

2.5 ml salt

80 g butter

125 ml onion, minced or finely chopped

1 egg

5 ml honey

180 ml cream, plus a little for brushing

Sift the wholewheat flour.  Sift again with the baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt.  Rub in the butter until the mixture is like coarse breadcrumbs.  Stir in the onions.

In a separate bowl, beat together the egg and cream.  Add honey.  Make a well in the centre of the flour mixture and add the cream and egg mixture.  Stir with a knife until the dough forms a sticky but workable dough.

On a floured surface, knead the dough for 30 seconds and pat gently into a rectangle about 3/4 inch thick.  Cut into 12 squares.  Place on a baking tray and brush the tops with a little cream.  Bake at 200 C for 12 -15 minutes until golden.

Makes 12

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

Chocolate Cup Cakes

These cup cakes are light and moist.  As we are all chocoholics in our family I usually double up on this recipe but even so they don’t last too long.

125 g butter or margarine

120 g sugar

2 eggs

300 ml flour (200 g)

40 ml cocoa

10 ml baking powder

5 ml vanilla essence

125 – 150 ml milk

Cream butter or margarine and sugar.  Add eggs and mix well.  Add the flour, cocoa, baking powder and vanilla essence.  Add milk and mix well.  (It should be a soft dropping consistency.)

Put into well greased patty pans or paper cups and bake at 200 C for 12 – 15 minutes.

Decorate with chocolate butter icing or alternatively cut off tops, put jam and cream on top, halve the cut off tops and replace to look like a butterfly.  Dust with icing sugar.

Makes 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

Muesli Cookies

This recipe comes from The Australian Women’s Weekly Cookbook called “The Big Book of Beautiful Biscuits” which is full of delicious looking biscuits so there might be more coming from this book in the future.

This one has more healthy ingredients than the average biscuit so don’t feel too guilty if you nibble on one of these.



185 g butter, melted

250 ml toasted muesli

250 ml coconut

250 ml rolled oats

125 ml self-raising flour (next time I will use more as they didn’t bind together very easily).  Perhaps try 175 ml.

125 ml sugar

60 ml sesame seeds

15 ml honey

1 egg, lightly beaten

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well.  Mould level tablespoons of mixture into balls, place about 3 cm apart on lightly greased oven trays and flatten slightly.  Bake in at 170 C for 10 – 12 minutes or until golden brown.

Makes about 32

Apricot Jam Muffins

Muffins are one of my favourite things to bake and the variety of muffins is endless.  These are full of apricot jam and look interesting when they are cut open to reveal their orange centre.  The sugar on top makes them nice and crunchy.

400 ml flour (200 g)

10 ml baking powder

3 ml salt

1 ml cinnamon

pinch nutmeg

125 ml sugar (100 g)

1 extra-large egg

180 ml milk

80 ml oil

50 g pecan nuts, coarsely chopped

smooth apricot jam

Preheat the oven to 200 C.  Grease a muffin pan.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Add the sugar and mix.  Beat together the egg, milk and oil.  Add to the dry ingredients, together with the pecan nuts.  Stir until just blended.  Do not overmix.

Fill each muffin hollow three quarters full with the mixture.  Make a hollow in the centre of each muffin and spoon 5 ml apricot jam into each hollow.  Bake for 15 – 20 minutes until golden brown.

Makes about 10 muffins