Wednesday, 29 August 2007

We are moving!

Hello everyone,

Just a quick post to let you all know that there will be no posts for a week or so. Our house that we have rented is going up for sale and we have found a new house to live in. We are moving this weekend and it ain't going to be pretty.

Fantastic thing about the new house though is a GAS STOVE!!!!!!! More pantry space and a bigger kitchen. So I will see you all in a week or so and look after yourselves.

Cheers Amelilta

Wednesday, 15 August 2007

Can you tell I don't live in the City anymore?

Country living really is a wonderful thing. You see things that you never get to see living in a big city. This is one of them. When we took the kids to the Townsville show, it was an eye opener. It was a day of family and down to earth fun. Duck racing and Duck fashion parades...............................................what the!!!!!!!!
The man who owns the ducks took it all very seriously. He stated that he has a very nice old lady who designs the ducks outfits for him. He said, he gets ideas for their outfits, out and about, in shop windows. He comes home and describes them to the lovely old lady. She in turn then makes their gorgeous little outfits and Walla, you have a duck fashion parade.
It was extremely funny and quite entertaining. The pictures really do explain themselves. The kids found it fascinating. Enjoy the pics!

Saturday, 11 August 2007

For Tony by request - something easy :)

My Boss Tony asked me the other day to make something on my blog that he could make. So here it is, Peach & Mango Chicken Curry with Coconut Rice and Cooling Yogurt. You can make this Tony, it's easy and you can make it as hot as you want.

This is David's favourite curry that I make and we like it hot. You can see all the beads of sweat come off his forehead as he is eating it. Looks like he has been in a Sauna. Just the way he likes it. This really is a very simple curry, you can adjust the heat and I will tell you how to in the recipe.
My kids love it :)


  1. 1 Kilo of Chicken Thigh Fillets, sliced (don't be tempted to use chicken breast, it's not the same)

  2. 410 gram tin of Peaches, in syrup (reserve syrup)

  3. 410 gram tin of sliced Mangoes, in syrup (reserve syrup)

  4. 2 x large red onions, sliced thickly into half moons

  5. 2 x large cloves of Garlic, chopped

  6. 400ml tin of Coconut Cream

  7. 2 tablespoons of Curry Powder

  8. A knob of Butter

  9. A splash of Peanut Oil, or Olive Oil

Once all of your ingredients are handy and set to go, this really only takes 15 minutes to cook. I put my rice on first. We have a rice cooker and it is fabulous. They are not very expensive and they make rice perfectly every time and it is easy. The only change I make to my rice when cooking it is to add a generous amount of either shredded coconut or flaked coconut. Don't use dessicated, trust me. If you make your rice in a saucepan using the absorption method you do exactly the same thing, just add the coconut before you start cooking it.

Now for the curry. Start by using a large heavy based saucepan, chuck in a good splash of oil and your onions and give them a fry for 2 minutes or so, then add your garlic and fry for another minute. Then add your chicken with your knob of butter and brown. Once the chicken has browned, add your curry powder. (if you don't want the curry to be to hot, just add a tablespoon and a half) Stir the curry powder in well. Then just add your reserved syrup, peaches, mangoes and coconut cream. Bring to the boil and allow to simmer uncovered for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. The sauce will thicken up, as in the photos above. Once your rice is cooked give it a good stir through before you serve. The coconut likes to float to the top during the cooking process.

We serve with Papadums which I just fry very quickly in a fry pan filled half way with canola oil. For the yogurt to dollop on top, just mix lemon juice to taste with Greek Yogurt. I also like to serve mine with a bowl of fresh chopped hot red chillies. I told you, we like it hot!

So Tony I hope this is easy enough for you and I am sure you are going to love it. Enjoy your move to Melbourne and I will miss you very much :(

Wednesday, 8 August 2007

Vietnamese Transparent Pork & Prawn Rolls with Bean Sauce

I would have to say Vietnamese food is one of my favourites cuisines. It is so fresh, so inviting and so yummy. I love these pork and prawn rolls. Lots of ingredients, lots of flavour, a little fiddly to make but absolutely worth it.
Firstly you need rice paper. You can pick it up pretty much at most supermarkets. I buy mine at the Asian supermarket.
Firstly you make the bean sauce. Very simple to do. Empty out the contents of one jar of Hoi Sin Sauce into a saucepan, then fill the jar with two thirds water, shake it about to get out the remainder of the Hoi Sin and pour into the sauce pan. Then add one large tablespoon of peanut butter. Bring to a simmer stirring all the time. Once everything has combined into a smooth thick glossy sauce, take off the heat and refrigerate covered until it is nicely chilled.

Char Sui Pork is your next main ingredient. Slice it into about 5 ml slices ready to put into your rolls.

You will need about 500 grams of lovely fresh prawns. Peel and devein if you wish. I don't unless they have sand in them. You can tell if they do have sand in them, if your like me and eat every third one that you peel ;) You will also need a small bag of bean shoots and some shredded iceberg lettuce.

The vermicelli noodles are next. Ignore what the packet says and throw them into a pot of boiling water for only two minutes. Strain and allow to cool in a covered bowl.

You will need some blanched peanuts, about 100 grams. I find you can only really get them at Asian supermarkets. Don't use presalted roasted peanuts, it's not the same. Roast them yourself and don't add salt to them. Give them a good bash with your mortar and pestle. These are used to top your lovely bean sauce.
Now that all your ingredients are cooled down and everything is spread out ready for assembly. Pop the kettle on. In a bowl half fill with boiling water. Dip your rice paper into the water and turn it round so that the whole circle of rice paper has been submerged in the hot water. Watch your fingers. I know that the packets on both the rice paper and the rice noodles say to soak in cold water but this is not the way the Vietnamese do it. The noodles and the rice paper become to wet and slippery. It makes assembly very difficult with your fillings slipping all over the shop and your rolls not sealing properly.
Lay out your rice paper on a cutting board. Place noodles, a piece of pork, a prawn or two, some bean shoots and three or four fresh mint leaves. Fold over just like making spring rolls.

Serve with your gorgeous bean sauce, topped with peanuts and your done. Allow three per person. These are very filling. They are very deceptive. They swell in your tummy.

There so fresh and so low in fat, without feeling like your eating something that is low fat. You can make them with chicken, my kids love them with chicken. They are great finger food and once you try them you will be totally addicted like we are. Hope you like them and my step by step photos?
Cheers Amelita

Sunday, 5 August 2007

7 Food Facts

The lovely Miss Margot from Coffee & Vanilla had tagged me a while ago to answer 7 Food Facts about myself. Due to the plague in my house I had totally forgotten about it. Sorry Margot. So here it is finally. I would like to tag in turn a couple of my favourite bloggers Uncaring Bear, Little Miss Moi and finally Duncan from Syrup & Tang.

  1. I am a totally messy cook. Without my Dave I would be stuffed. Example above of my true messy style. Also my kitchen is to small. I need a bigger one so I can make even more mess.
  2. I hate, hate, just hate, any bread over a day old. If it hasn't been baked that day, it's only use to me is either toast or homemade bread crumbs. Coming from a very poor family, I came to appreciate very fresh bread when we had it. I am scarred for life!
  3. Offal, can't eat it, won't touch it, I run in the other direction, it just gives me the willys and turns my stomach.
  4. I have turned my children into food snobs. Simply the best is only good enough for them. They are truly food critics and make life impossible for anyone who cooks for them. What have I done? I didn't do it on purpose. Ben is constantly giving me advice on what I should have done and how I can do it better next time. Cheeky monkey!
  5. I am allergic to Broccoli and Cauliflower, well not really, that's just what I tell everyone because I detest them.
  6. I love expensive fancy ingredients. Some women have shoes, some women love clothes, I have my oils and weird ingredients. Does anyone know where I might be able to buy a Truffle in Townsville? I am just hanging to buy one.
  7. Lastly, Food is what gives a home a heart, it brings people together, it makes you feel content, it creates fabulous childhood memories or nightmares, it creates comfort and a house that revolves around a kitchen is just satisfying. Food and Family are my life, and my world. I show my family how much I love them by producing meals that everyone enjoys and everyone talks about. I feel like I am giving them my heart and soul when I cook. It is a gift that will keep on giving for the rest of my life.