Southwest Orzo Pasta SALAD

1 cup orzo pasta

2 cups frozen Corn Kernels

½ small red onion,finely chopped

1 red capsicum deseeded and chopped

1 green capsicum,deseeded and chopped

1-2 chorizo or spicy sausage(s),

190ml DIY Southwest Chipotle Flavoured Dressing

50g feta, crumbled

handful fresh parsley leaves, chopped

1. Cook orzo pasta in plenty of boiling lightly salted water until just cooked. Drain and refresh in cold water. Place into a bowl. 2. Put Wattie’s frozen Supersweet Corn Kernels into a microwave proof bowl. Cover and cook on high for 3 minutes, or until hot. Cool. Add to the cooked orzo.

3. Add red onion, red and green capsicums and chorizo.

4. Stir through Eta Southwest Chipotle Flavoured Dressing until well mixed. Serve garnished with crumbled feta and chopped parsley


Southwest Orzo Pasta Salad SAUCE

original recipe found here

This is one of our favorite family recipes 🙂

After spending $4.99 on a bottle of the dressing that goes into this, I’ve found a couple of online recipes to try out instead for our next batch of this salad:

This one:

1/2 cup plain mayonnaise (weighed this out on my scales at 140g)

2 tsp lime juice

1 tsp sugar

1 tsp cilantro

1/2 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp white vinegar

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp crushed garlic

1/8 – 1/4 tsp chile (1/4 was too hot for us)

pinch dried thyme

pinch ground cumin

Method: Combine ingredeitns in a small bowl, cover and chill for at least 1hr before using.  Makes 1/2 cup

and this recipe:

1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce plus 1 tsp sauce (no idea what that is???)

1/2 c mayo

1/3 cup greek yoghurt

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

1/4 tsp ground cumin

1/4 tsp dried dill

salt to taste

Method: place all ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth for 2-3 mins. Store in the fridge for up to 4 wks.

Sweet Curried Sausages Casserole Experiment

This should take an hour in a conventional oven so lets see if the new gadget can do better!

12 pre-cooked gluten free sausages

1 large onion diced

4 carrots cut into thumb size chunks

2 large potatoes skins left on cut into thumb size chunks

1 handfull of sultanas

1 packet of maggi sweet mild curry sausages made into a paste with some of the below water

2 cups of water

Select Meat/Saute to brown sausages and onions, then add the remainder of the ingredients and pressure cook for 25 mins on high/meat setting, will leave to slow release until I’m back from an appointment but try quick release next time to see if it makes any difference, will also try to DIY replicate the Maggi packet!!

Serve as a one pot dish or on microwaved rice.

Microwave rice:

1 cup/part rice

2 cup/part water

microwave on high in a pyrex bowl for 12mins



I’ll be pinning up paleo recipes to try by Pete Evans for our family to try

You’ll find them and many more direct via his facebook:

If you’re after a quick, easy and nourishing meal to whip up.. this is it!
ZUCCHINI SPAGHETTI WITH BASIL AND PARSLEY PESTO (also great with roast chicken or cooked prawns tossed through)
Please tag, share and hover over the ‘liked’ button above, click on notifications to receive all of our posts. Join the tribe x

Serves: 4
Yield: Basil and parsley pesto: approximately 400 ml (13½ fl oz./ 1 2/3 cup)

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 4 minutes
Difficulty: Easy

1½ tablespoons coconut oil
3 zucchinis (500 g /1 lb. 1½ oz. in total) cut into spaghetti strips on a mandolin or slicer
1 garlic clove, crushed
10 kalamata olives, pitted and halved

Basil and Parsley Pesto
2 large handfuls basil leaves
2 large handfuls flat-leaf parsley leaves
2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon pine nuts, toasted
2 tablespoons lemon juice
12 macadamia nuts, toasted
125 ml (4¼ fl oz. / ½ cup) macadamia oil or extra-virgin olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground
Black pepper

To make the pesto, place all the ingredients in a mortar and pestle or food processor grind/process combine to form a thick, coarse paste. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
To make the noodles, heat the oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the zucchini and garlic and sauté for 1–1½ minutes, or until just beginning to soften. Season with salt and pepper, add the pesto and olives and toss well. Continue to cook for 1 minute, or until heated through. Spoon into bowls and serve.

Cook with Love and Laughter
Pete x

Spiced Fruit Bread GF 1kg loaf




This recipe is adapted from my bread-makers manual.  The texture is identical to store brought GF bread, which if you’ve never had before… it’s basically more of a cake texture than fluffy white tip top bread texture.

I use a Breville Big Loaf Bread Maker BB380 pictured below.


Give the pan a spray with non stick oil:

Always add wet ingredients first.  In winter slightly heat your liquids so that they help the yeast perform at its peak 🙂


450 ml of milk, I used whole milk but any milk works (coconut/almond), even water will work with 3 Tbs of any milk powder added to it.

30 grams of raw organic coconut oil or 3 Tbs of any liquid vegetable oil you prefer

3 (60g ea) large whisked eggs

1 tsp of apple cider vinegar

1 cup (110 grams) of coconut flour

2 cups & 1.5 Tbs (356 grams) of edmonds plain GF flour

3 Tbs sugar

1 tsp salt

3 tsp breadmaker fast acting yeast

3 tsp mixed spice

3/4 c sultanas (make sure they’re not too dry as they’ll suck the moisture out of your bread, if you need to – soak these in a cup of boiled water for 10mins to rehydrate and add them to the pan last)

Settings on machine: 1 – Basic, and Crust – Medium

Recipe Batch Cost: $8.75 which is what you’ll pay for a 500g loaf of GF fruit bread in the store.

This recipe makes a 1kg loaf of bread!

Woo hoo! we just saved some money 🙂

Will add photos once it’s cooled/cut

Vee x

Pikelets – GF

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I really wanted pancakes for breakfast but couldn’t see how the Gluten-Free flours would behave enough to not stick so I could flip em! why is GF flour so sticky? Hmmm

Anyway, Sunday breakfast pikelets it is!

They were much the soft fluffy texture inside as regular flour pikelets, but the coconut flour offered a natural sweetener… I’ll keep playing with the recipe to try eliminate the 1/4c of sugar.  They were fine to eat without butter and jam/golden syrup too so I had mine just plain and hot from the pan.

Here’s my recipe:

Mix together
1/2c Avalanche coconut flour
1/2c GF Edmonds flour
1tsp baking powder
1/4c sugar
1/4 tsp salt
20g melted organic coconut oil or butter
3 eggs
2c of milk, buttermilk, coconut milk, almond milk… whatever you like –  **approx to make a batter

Much love!
Vee x

**Note: I need to work out a more exact for the milk, so just watch when you mix it in last how your batter texture becomes more liquid and stop when it reaches a thicker run off the spoon fluidity than pancakes batter.

Credit and inspiration to GOOP recipe and Edmonds Pikelets Recipe

Banana & Coconut Cupcakes GF

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Hullo! Long time no write!!  I’ve been super busy being busy.

Anyway this recipe was a real experiment so with having turned out so beautiful I must add it to the recipe log to share and to save.  I basically took the Edmonds Cupcakes recipe and went from there adding this and that, oh and I’ve costed it up for you too 🙂

These are hubby’s birthday cupcakes for work, and he asked me to make his birthday treats gluten free.

After several FFS this is going to go so badly… last time I made GF scones they were AWFUL!! and crumbly… UGH.

Anyway spoiler alert! these are DELICIOUS, FLUFFY, MOIST!


250g butter

1 cup castor sugar

4 eggs

1 cup edmonds GF self raise flour

1 cup avalanche coconut flour

1/2 cup milk

4 tsp edmonds baking powder

5 small bananas mashed

1/2 cup dessicated coconut

Total batch cost incl: paper cupcake liners, electricity, icing

$16.67 for 24 really pretty… maybe even DESIGNER 😉 cupcakes

JUST .69 cents each.

We have a bakery here in Christchurch that charges $3.50 for plain cupcake liners and flat looking GF muffins with a smear of icing.

It’s well worth the effort learning to work with GF ingredients.


Preheat the oven to 190’c fanbake.

Beat the butter and sugar really well until it lightens in color and the sugar isn’t as crunchy sounding on the beaters, add the eggs ONE at a time!! ONE …. (I’m writing this for when our children one day need to use my recipes… sorry to be so CAPITALS!!) egg at a time and beat beat beat so its fluffy… ah yes – that’s how you get your cupcakes to be soft and fluffy 😉

Sift in the flours and baking powder (you need this extra baking powder because the bananas add weight to them as they try to rise) and FOLD the mixture, add the milk and fold that in too, fold in the five mashed ripe bananas and half a cup of dessicated coconut (whoops forgot to add that to the costing) then get this into the cupcake liners and into the oven ASAP so the mixture can’t start to loose it’s fluffed up-ness.

Cook for 15 minutes then open the oven and turn it off so they can cool down slowly.


Beat the room temperature (nuke in the microwave for 10 sec if you need to) butter and icing sugar into buttercream icing, add 1/4 tsp of lemon essence (whoops that’s not in the ingredients above either sorry!) and 1-2 tablespoons of hot water IF needed then pipe with a good fat star tip (wilton 2M? dunno what this is)

Will add photos of them all iced up and pretty when I get time.

Vee x

Corn Fritters w. Cider

Massive thank you for this Recipe by: The Health Conscious Scrooge The difference in this to my own fritter recipe is the cider.  I specially went shopping for some cider to try this and am just so delighted. Comments on the facebook page say the fluffy texture is thanks to the cider!


1 cup corn kernels – defrosted

1/2 onion -finely diced

1/2 cup broccoli -finely chopped

1 cup flour

1 tsp salt

ground black pepper

1 tsp baking soda

1 egg

approx 200ml warm water

1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

olive oil to cook

Put the corn, onion, broccoli, flour, salt, pepper and baking soda in a mixing bowl, and crack in the egg. Mix together the cider vinegar and the warm water, pour into the ingredients and mix to combine. Cook spoonfuls in a lightly greased pan, when cooked lay them on a tray and finish in a moderate oven for about 5-10 minutes so that the onion and broccoli have a chance to finish cooking.

Savory Scones and Cinnimon Raisin Twist Bread

Brooklyn goes on his first school camp tomorrow!

I’m feeling quite ill about it since its so close to his slingshot to the eye accident and having only newly started his school.

The teacher and our friends are all being so kind about me being such a pansy about it.

He will have the best time ever!

We had to send baking so it’s been a blessing in disguise to busy myself in the kitchen today.

I made three batches of cheese scones and one absolutely beautiful cinnamon fruit twist specialty bread all with my bread maker doing the hard yards.

I set to making the other batches and oh boy when the bread came out of the oven the kids were trying to tell me it was too nice to be sending to camp!

The savory scone recipe is just the Edmonds one but using your machine for mixing etc

3 cups plain flour

6 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

pinch of mustard

pinch of cayene or paprika

1 heaping tsp of dried parsley

75g butter

1 to 1 1/2 cups milk

200g grated cheese (1/5 of a 1kg block)


Preheat the oven to 200’c fanbake.

Put the flour, baking powder, butter chopped into 1cm squares, paprika, mustard, salt into your breadmaker and get it to knead it all up,


then pause the machine and remove your breadpan and get your hands in there to rub the butter through making it into a breadcrumbs like texture, put the pan back in your breadmaker, add 3/4 of the grated cheese and continue to knead it and add 1 cup of milk…. wait for a bit, then add little by little as you see fit until it looks clumpy, dryish clumpy so it wont’ stick to you while you knead it.


Remove the pan from the maker again and toss it onto your floured bench


and knead until there’s no cracks in it, make a circle about 1″ thick and cut into 12, brush with milk all over, sprinkle cheese on top and bake for 10 minutes.


Cinnamon Raisin Sweetbread Twist:

2 cups plain flour

1/2 tsp salt

2 1/2 tsp bread maker yeast

3/4 cup milk

3 T canola oil

1 cup re-hydrated raisins,
My friend Rachel’s Mum; Jenny taught me to do this, it stops your baking being dried out by the dehydrated fruit sapping the moisture into itself.  All you do is fill the cup of raisins with boiling water and leave on the bench until you need them.

filling: 1/4 c brown sugar, 1 T cinnimon

2 T melted butter to paint it once rolled out

1 egg yolk to glaze it


This needs to cook for 20 mins hot and fast at 190’c fanbake (so if you’re doing scones while this rises twice you’ll be working smarter with your electricity bill) If you’re not doing any other baking, wait until half way through your second rise to preheat your oven.

Put flour, yeast and warmed milk (30 sec in the microwave) into the bread maker pan and select your dough setting to knead and rise your dough for you.  This takes around an hour so expect to have other stuff to do around the house while you make bread (like make scones or dinner or crafting!) it really is a day long activity.

If you don’t have a breadmaker, sit the yeast in the warm milk then mix in once frothed up and hand knead your dough (100x turns) and cover the bowl with cling wrap and leave in a warm place for around an hour to double in size.

Once your dough has risen, drain out the raisins and add them in, then give the dough a “punch down” (couple of kneads to get the air out) and roll out to a 9″ x 12″ square to cut into three long strips.


After painting the strips with the melted butter, mix the sugar and spice and sprinkle down each strip, then roll up and pinch each strip to make three sausages.


Plait them and tuck the ends under then cover with a tea towel to rise one last time


Placed on a grease poof paper lined tray and cover with a towel and in a warm draft free area to rise for around an hour.  The dishwasher after doing a load while its still hot and humid in there is PERFECT!


as is the back seat of your car, the hot water cupboard… the glasshouse? lol I’m sure you’ll find somewhere 🙂

Once risen brush it with one egg yolk mixed with 2 tsp of water and bake for 10 mins at 190’c then cover with a tinfoil tent to stop it browning further (shiny side up) and bake the last 10 mins.


Ice with 1/3 c icing sugar mixed with some milk once its warm to touch.

Cheese Ball Recipe

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This is the Edmonds recipe with a frugal twist thanks to my SIL for mentioning to just use relish or chutney!

Anyway for those of you reading from around other parts of the world here’s our kiwi cheese ball recipe


1 cup grated tasty cheese

250 gram of cream cheese (keep chilled right up til you use it)

3 tablespoons of relish or chutney

1/2 a teaspoon of paprika

squirt some worcester (boss) sauce in to taste

something crushed up to roll it in, I used some old broken crackers from the bottom of our cracker bin and sunflower seeds to add a contrast of color/texture



Grate the cheese and mash in the cream cheese, don’t faff around as if the cream cheese gets to room temp you’ll have a mother of a time being able to roll it in the crushed coating.

Mix in the relish/chutney, paprika, worcester sauce then while you’re wearing gloves or with super clean hands (give them a scrub with a teaspoon of salt and handwash as you definitely dont want dead skin rolled in your cheese ball ewwww), hand mold it into a large ball, use one hand to hold it while your other hand grabs handfulls of your coating and presses into it as you turn it in your hand.

Wrap in glad wrap and put in the fridge overnight.

Serve with chips, mini bagels, snax, chopped carrots etc etc