Jun 16

Cookbook 109: The Edible Garden cookbook

I bought The Australian Women’s Weekly, The Edible Garden Cookbook: Growing and cooking vegetables and herbs online from a discount store so there weren’t any reviews and I didn’t really know what I was getting. It wasn’t what I expected.  I was expecting more of a book covering the preservation of produce with the occasional recipe for using some produce fresh.  I also expected a LOT more recipes.  This book doesn’t even cover a lot about growing the produce they want you to cook with.  Overall, I’m really disappointed with the wasted potential in this book.  The recipes though are pretty good, but you’d expect that with anything written by AWW.  Overall I give this 2.5 stars out of 5 because of the wasted potential.

Portuguese Potatoes

Ingredients:

  • 600g sebago potatoes, peeled, chopped coarsely
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 large brown onion (200g), chopped coarsely
  • 4 medium tomatoes (760g), chopped coarsely
  • 2 teaspoons sweet paprika
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon peri peri sauce
  • 1 tablespoon coarsly chopped fresh, flat-leaf parsley

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 220C
  2. Toss potato and half the oil in medium shallow baking dish.  Roast, uncovered, about 30 minutes or until browned lightly
  3. Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in large frying pan; cook garlic and onion, stirring, until onion softens.  Add tomato, paprika and thyme to pan; cook, stirring, about 1 minute or until tomato just softens.  Add stock and sauce to pan; bring to the boil.  Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes or until tomato mixture thickens slightly.
  4. Remove potato from oven; reduce oven temperature to 180C
  5. Pour tomato mixture over potato; bake, uncovered, about 20 minutes or until potato is tender.  Serve sprinkled with parsley.

Notes on this recipe:

  • You can use nicola potatoes, or any potatoes that are suitable for roasting.  You can also pause the dish between the first bake and the second if you’re running ahead of schedule.
  • Substituting sirachaya chilli sauce for peri peri sauce is also possible (which is what I did because I didn’t have any further need for peri peri sauce) and it tasted fine and hot.

Onion tart

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 30g butter
  • 5 large brown onions (1kg), halved, sliced thinly
  • 3 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped seeded black olives
  • 150g goats cheese

Pastry

  • 1 1/2 cups plain flour
  • 60g butter, extra
  • 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
  • 125g cream cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1 – 2 tablespoons lemon juice, approximately

Method:

  1. Make pastry: Process flour, butter, parmesan and half the cream cheese until combined.  Add egg and enough juice to make ingredients cling together. Wrap pastry in plastic wrap; refrigerate 30 minutes.  Preheat oven to 200C.  Lightly oil 23cm loose-based flan tin.  Roll pastry on floured surface until large enough to cover base and side of tin; lift pastry into tin, gently ease into side, trim edge.  Place tin on oven tray; line pastry with baking paper, fill with dried beans or rice.  Bake 10 minutes.  Remove paper and beans; bake a further 10 minutes, or until pastry is browned lightly, cool.  Reduce oven temperature to 180C.
  2. Meanwhile, heat oil, and butter in large heavy-based frying pan.  Add onions; cook, covered, over medium heat, about 5 minutes or until onions are softened.  Uncover; cook, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes or until onions are golden brown.  Stir in thyme, garlic and olives; cook a further 10 minutes.  Cool to room temperature.
  3. Spread combined goats cheese and remaining cream cheese over pastry shell.  Top with onion mixture; bake in oven about 30 minutes or until filling is firm.

Notes on this recipe:

  • I could not find on this particular weekend, any goats cheese that did not have rennet in it.  I ended up buying a soft camembert like cheese and then we mashed the cream cheese into it.  The recipe tasted somewhat different that if we had been successful in finding goats cheese.
  • This is a little bit fiddly, but quite tasty.

Rosemary lamb skewers

Ingredients:

  • 8 springs fresh rosemary
  • 600g minced lamb
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup stale breadcrumbs
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 large brown onion, sliced thinly
  • 1 tablespoon plain flour
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • 2 medium tomatoes, chopped coarsly

Method:

  1. Remove two thirds of the leaves from the bottom part of each rosemary sprig to make skewers.  Finely chop 2 teaspoons of the leaves and reserve.
  2. Combine mince, egg yolk, breadcrumbs, garlic, paste and reserved rosemary in medium bowl.  Shape lamb mixture into sausage shapes on rosemary skewers.
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in large frying pan; cook skewers until browned and cooked through.  Remove from pan.
  4. Heat remaining oil in same pan; cook onion until soft.  Add flour; cook, stirring, until mixture bubbles and thickens.  Gradually stir in stock until smooth.  Add tomato; cook until gravy boils and thickens.
  5. Serve rosemary skewers with gravy.

Notes on this recipe:

  • This was my favourite of the night.  The lamb was moist and flavoursome, and the gravy was a perfect accompaniment.
  • It wasn’t difficult to put together, and was quick to get onto the table.
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