Sunday, March 16, 2014

in the kitchen

It's been a really busy few weeks lately and I managed to get myself back in to my happy place - my kitchen. 

Yesterday between school drop off, a visit to my husbands work, a quick trip to the supermarket & school pick-up I was able to dedicate time to dinner & a little tastebud luxury.  

A few weeks ago in Byron Bay my best friend from high school and I ate some really yummy food. I realised that the food trend in Byron is definitely raw food with every second cafe selling some trendy healthy treat. Our favourite became a small juice bar on the Main Street a stones throw from the beach. One evening for dessert we shared a gluten free brownie and a slice of raw carrot cake because we just couldn't have just one, could we? 

Moments before we drove back to Ballina airport to fly home I made the hasty decision to grab a piece of raw chocolate & pistachio cake to eat on the plane. It was rich and delicious! 

Here are a couple of sneaky pics I took of the display cabinet (with the hope of replicating the recipes at home). 

I thought I'd ask my trusty foodie FB followers of they knew of raw carrot cake recipes and they came up with these four. 

Don't they sound divine? I decided I wanted to go with the layered effect and so chose the rawgasm recipe to make first. Of course this could be made in a food processor but the Thermomix meant it was ready in minutes. 

The few changes I made were not soaking the raisins, using 6 medium carrots, using one tablespoon of agave and lime juice. I also pressed it into a rectangular tin so I could easily slice it into snack-sized squares. I'll freeze some for later too. 

The end result is a moist and tasty dessert. 

Since our stay at a friend's sheep station on the Monaro just after Xmas my husband has developed an interest in hunting and preparing meat for family meals and while it's impossible to do in suburban Sydney we'd like to think that maybe we can make our dream lifestyle happen. To celebrate J's birthday I took him to the majestic Elizabeth Bay house for this afternoon of gastronomy put on by Sydney Living Museums.

We were lucky to chat with Rohan from Whole Larder Love and bought ourselves a copy of his book. Rohan's passion for sustainable, ethically killed and prepared (i.e. no waste) food is infectious.

Our new organic produce delivery company, Lettuce Deliver has bags of 'seconds' tomatoes. Beauty is on the inside, right? And for these tomatoes the saying couldn't ring truer. They were shaped oddly and had a few 'riper' spots but they looked and smelled delicious. I took Rohan's advice and made a batch of roasted tomato passata. Obviously the passata has a richer flavour and depth to it (than raw tomatoes whizzed up) and was the perfect base for a bolognaise this week.

Lastly, in my hectic moments in the kitchen I made a marinade for these organic chicken pieces which included an organic reduced salt Tamari, a few organic garlic cloves, the juice of two limes, a tablespoon of honey, a knob of finely sliced ginger and a splash of sesame oil with a generous sprinkling of black sesame seeds. These were marinated for four hours then cooked for 20 minutes at 200ºc and were well received by the young and older members of the house! 

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