Monthly Archives: November 2013

Coconut Impossible Pie

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Last year, my delightful cousin-in-law Nicola put together a fundraising cookbook with recipes contributed by the parents who attend her church’s playgroup and I’ve just started working through the recipes inside – which has been great fun! The first one I’d like to share with you is this terrific Coconut Impossible Pie because it was so easy, was made on standard pantry items and costs very little to make. During cooking the combined ingredients settle into at least two layers: a dense-ish base and a custardy coconut filling – so yummy, especially for summer. If you choose to make this in a spring-form or loose bottomed tin as I did, please learn from my oven disaster and cook the pie in its tin, inside a large cake tin that can hold the pie during baking (see photo). Once it’s cooked, use a tall glass to remove the base and allow the pie to cool (see photo). If you prefer slightly less fuss, just bake the pie in standard pie dish or cake tin. This lovely dessert costs less than $4 to make and goes down beautifully when served with cream or ice-cream. Thanks for your excellent compilation, Nicola!

  • 1/2 cup plain flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 4 eggs
  • 125g softened butter
  • 1 cup castor sugar
  • 1 cup coconut
  1. Preheat oven to 170 degrees, 160 degrees if fan forced.
  2. Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
  3. Pour mixture into a greased pie dish and bake for 1 hour – but start checking earlier. Once the top seems ‘set’, pull it out as pie will continue to cook as it cools.
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Ginger Sponge

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What I love about this recipe, originally from The Common Sense Cookery Book, introduced to me by my friend Beck:

It tastes amazing.

It has a lovely grown-up, old-world charm about it and feels a bit dainty when served with a cup of tea of coffee.

It’s ginger. Need I say more?

It’s made from ingredients already in the pantry (no shopping)

It has a short baking time

It’s ginger.

The two cakes are thin and cool quickly, ready to assemble.

It’s cheap as chips to make: no more than $3

It’s ginger.

Did I say, it’s ginger?

Thanks a bunch, Beck. Love, love, love it.

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon golden syrup
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon bicarb soda

Mock Cream Filling & Topping

  •  4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup sifted icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius, 160 degrees if fan-forced. Grease and flour two 18cm diameter round shallow cake pans.
  2. Beat butter and sugar to a cream. In another bowl, beat egg milk and golden syrup together. Add to creamed butter and sugar.
  3. Fold in sifted flour, ginger, cinnamon and bicarb soda. Distribute evenly between the two pans and bake for around 15 minutes.
  4. Check if cooked through using a skewer which should come out clean from the middle of the cakes. Turn onto wire rack and cool.
  5. While cakes are cooling, make mock cream by eating butter and sugar to a cream, then gently adding icing sugar and vanilla essence.
  6. When cakes are cooled, use half mock cream to sandwich them together, and use the other half to ice the top of the cake.

Balsamic Chicken Bake

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 I’ve been meaning to blog about Miriam English’s Balsamic Chicken Bake for ages and I’m so pleased to have finally got around to it. Since I first tried this awesome recipe about six weeks ago we’ve eaten it many times because it’s so very easy and tasty: just put everything in the roasting dish at the same time, and then whack it in the oven. Then, just before serving, steam some greens to serve with this crowd-pleasing dinner, stick it all in the middle of the table, and that’s it – dinner is done. This versatile dinner, originally from Super Food Ideas, Issue 111, copes well with various cuts of chicken and the addition of extra roasting veggies such as carrot, pumpkin and sweet potato. Recipes like this one are so great to have in your back pocket, cause if you’re anything like me, all sorts of things need to happen while dinner is cooking: supervising the reading of school readers, quickly scrubbing the loo before guests arrive, wiping down most surfaces and putting washing away – this tasty and simple dinner enables much needed efficiency. Using the quantities below and chicken thigh cutlets, this problem- solving dish costs less than $15, serves 6-8 people, and is dairy, egg, wheat and gluten free. Pictures here are of half quantities.

  • 12 (2kg chicken thigh cutlets, fillets, wings or drumsticks
  • 600g potatoes, quartered
  • 2 med red onions
  • 6 garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • 6 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 250g cherry tomatoes
  1. Preheat oven to 220 degrees celcius. Arrange chicken, potato, onion, garlic and thyme in 2 large roasting dishes.
  2. Whisk vinegar, oil & sugar in a jug until sugar has dissolved. Drizzle over chicken mixture. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Bake for 40 minutes. Add tomatoes. Bake for 10 minutes more, or until chicken is cooked through.
  4. Serve with a green salad or steamed greens.