Brown Butter Thyme Mushrooms


Date Published: August 20th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 20th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: sides, vegetarian
Serves: 4 (as sides) | Prep time: 2 mins | Cook time: 15 mins

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This super easy brown butter mushroom recipe was something I whipped up in the spur of the moment today when I was making a goat cheese stuffed chicken breast for lunch. I LOVE mushrooms and lucky for me I had some spare in the fridge as well as thyme in the garden. Something about thyme and mushrooms just makes a perfect combination and even better when cooked in a beautiful aromatic nutty brown butter. I’d recommend slicing them thick like the photos below for maximum absorption of the delicious brown butter!

Anyways, without further ado, here’s the recipe! If you have any comments or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you in the comment section! You can follow me on instagram, youtube and facebook to see all the recipes I post!

Happy cooking!

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • 70g unsalted butter
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 500g white button mushrooms, thickly sliced to 1.5cm width
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

In a large skillet on MEDIUM heat, brown the butter (I’ve written a tutorial here on how to brown butter).

When the butter is browned, quickly add in the garlic and thyme, sauté for about 15 seconds then add in mushrooms.

It’s important to lay the mushrooms in a single layer and not crowd them in the pan. You need space to let the liquids evaporate or else they’ll boil in their own juices and result in soggy mushrooms. If you don’t have a pan large enough to fit all the mushrooms, take out half of the brown butter/garlic/thyme from the pan and cook the mushrooms in batches.

The mushrooms will initially absorb all the brown butter and your pan will look dry but as it cooks it will start releasing a little liquid. Mushrooms are cooked when they’re brown and just start to release their own liquid. You can cook them longer if you prefer softer mushrooms.

When the mushrooms are cooked, turn the heat off and sprinkle black pepper and salt to taste. Done!

Note: Do not add salt before the mushrooms are done or else they’ll dehydrate the mushrooms and release liquid into the pan.

Summarized Recipe:

Brown Butter Thyme Mushrooms

Date Published: August 20th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 20th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: sides, vegetarian
Serves: 4 (as sides) | Prep time: 2 mins | Cook time: 15 mins

Ingredients:

  • 70g unsalted butter
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 500g white button mushrooms, thickly sliced to 1.5cm width
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. In a large skillet on MEDIUM heat, brown the butter (I’ve written a tutorial here on how to brown butter).
  2. When the butter is browned, quickly add in the garlic and thyme, sauté for about 15 seconds then add in mushrooms. Do not crowd the pan. If your pan is too small, take out half of the brown butter/garlic/thyme and cook the mushroom in batches.
  3. Mushrooms are cooked when they’re brown and just start to release their own liquid. You can cook them longer if you prefer softer mushrooms.
  4. When the mushrooms are cooked, turn the heat off and sprinkle black pepper and salt to taste. Done!

Pesto-Crusted Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breast


Date Published: August 20th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 20th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: mains, easy
Serves: 4 | Prep time: 15 mins | Cook time: 25 mins

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Pesto. Panko. Goat cheese. Spinach. Garlic. These are a few of my favourite things and make me salivate just by reading them out loud. We’ve been cooking with a lot of chicken breast lately mainly by breading them to make a katsu or katsu parma, or adding them to salads like my favourite apple goat cheese salad. I was doing some research for meal prep and stumbled across a stuffed chicken breast recipe. This immediately made my mind go into a million different possibilities of what I could put in a chicken breast. After a whole day of thinking about it (seriously), I settled on a pesto-crusted chicken breast stuffed with goat cheese and garlic spinach. I was SO excited to make this dish and hoped it would be everything I had imagined it to be. Sadly I didn’t actually get to make this dish until 2 painful weeks later because during pandemic times, we only do grocery shopping once a week and I kept missing all the ingredients I needed. The first week we didn’t have enough basil for pesto, then the next week we didn’t have enough spinach. Bah! I FINALLY got to make it today and I’m happy to report that everything turned out fantastic and this dish was definitely worth the wait! It got rave reviews at the dinner table. Everything came together so quickly and it was so easy, I was looking for more things to do in the kitchen (I ended up making two side dishes to go with it: brown butter thyme mushrooms and bacon mashed peas). The panko with the pesto made a crunchy little crust on top of the breast with gooey melted goat cheese and spinach in the middle of the chicken. The goat cheese mixture actually kept the chicken really moist while baking so it came out perfectly cooked!

Anyways, without further ado, here’s the recipe! If you have any comments or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you in the comment section! You can follow me on instagram, youtube and facebook to see all the recipes I post!

Happy cooking!

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 cups (200g) fresh spinach leaves
  • 3/4 cup (150g) soft goat cheese
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 4 chicken breasts, butterflied (click to see tutorial)
  • salt and pepper
  • 3/4 cup pesto (you can make it yourself with my recipe here or use store-bought)
  • 1/2 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)

Directions:

Warm a skillet on MEDIUM heat and add in a drizzle of oil (~1/2 tablespoon). Sauté the garlic for 30 seconds until fragrant then add in the spinach leaves and sauté until the leaves are just wilted (~3-5 mins). Remove from heat and set aside in a bowl to cool. Discard any excess liquids.

While the spinach is cooling, rinse and pat dry the chicken breasts and butterfly them (click here for tutorial). Sprinkle black pepper and salt over the breasts. Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 200˚C (~400˚F).

Once the spinach has cooled, mix it with the goat cheese, 1/4 tsp of black pepper, and a pinch of salt.

Spoon and divide evenly the goat cheese spinach mixture amongst the 4 chicken breasts. Only put the mixture on half of the breast, then fold the other half over to enclose it. Use a few toothpicks to secure the breast closed.

As the chicken cooks the meat will shrink and open up the breast which is why the toothpicks are necessary to keep them closed and maintain their shape.

Mix the pesto and panko together then evenly divide the mixture amongst the 4 breasts and cover the top of each breast.

Bake in the preheated oven at 200˚C for 20-25 minutes. The pesto crust should be golden brown and the chicken juices run clear. Carefully remove the toothpicks then serve immediately. Done!

Summarized Recipe:

Pesto-Crusted Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breast

Date Published: August 20th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 20th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: mains, easy
Serves: 4 | Prep time: 15 mins | Cook time: 25 mins

Ingredients:

  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 cups (200g) fresh spinach leaves
  • 3/4 cup (150g) soft goat cheese
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 4 chicken breasts, butterflied (click to see tutorial)
  • salt and pepper
  • 3/4 cup pesto (you can make it yourself with my recipe here or use store-bought)
  • 1/2 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)

Directions:

  1. Warm a skillet on MEDIUM heat and add in a drizzle of oil (~1/2 tablespoon). Sauté the garlic for 30 seconds until fragrant then add in the spinach leaves and sauté until the leaves are just wilted (~3-5 mins). Remove from heat and set aside in a bowl to cool. Discard any excess liquids.
  2. While the spinach is cooling, rinse and pat dry the chicken breasts and butterfly them (click here for tutorial). Sprinkle black pepper and salt over the breasts. Set aside.
  3. Preheat the oven to 200˚C (~400˚F).
  4. Once the spinach has cooled, mix it with the goat cheese, 1/4 tsp of black pepper, and a pinch of salt.
  5. Spoon and divide evenly the goat cheese spinach mixture amongst the 4 chicken breasts. Only put the mixture on half of the breast, then fold the other half over to enclose it. Use a few toothpicks to secure the breast closed.
  6. Mix the pesto and panko together then evenly divide the mixture amongst the 4 breasts and cover the top of each breast.
  7. Bake in the preheated oven at 200˚C for 20-25 minutes. The pesto crust should be golden brown and the chicken juices run clear. Carefully remove the toothpicks then serve immediately. Done!

Bacon Mashed Peas


Date Published: August 20th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 20th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: sides
Serves: 4 (makes one big bowl) | Prep time: 5 mins | Cook time: 20 mins

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I’m going to be the first to admit that this is a pretty ugly dish and it was a challenge to photograph to make it look delicious 😂. After about 15 mins trying different angles on the small patio table outside, it was still a pile of green mush. Despite its appearance, these mashed peas are so yum and makes a great side dish for almost anything. It’s also a great way to use up that half opened bag of green peas that’s been sitting in the back of your freezer for the past year.

I’m not a huge fan of peas on their own. I find them kind of tasteless and boring. They always seems to be served the same way: boiled with salt and pepper as a filler on a plate. No one really loves eating them but we do anyway because it’s veg, and our mothers have engraved in our brains that we must have a serve of veg with every meal. Welp, I’ve taken those boring peas and put my own spin on it sautéed with onions, garlic and bacon then simmered in beef broth and blended (not mashed unlike the title suggests). Peas are actually quite sweet in their nature and when you blend it all up it enhances the sweetness and you end up with a kind of sweet pile of green mush with bits of salty and savoury bacon. Full disclaimer: this dish still tastes very much like peas so if you actually dislike the taste of peas then this recipe is not for you. Toby has been a lifelong hater of peas and although this isn’t his favourite dish, he did say this was the best peas he’s ever had (but he still doesn’t like peas). His father however loves peas and had multiple servings. I’ll take that as a double win!

Anyways, without further ado, here’s the recipe! If you have any comments or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you in the comment section! You can follow me on instagram, youtube and facebook to see all the recipes I post!

Happy cooking!

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • 4 cups frozen peas
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 6 strips of “streaky bacon”, diced (or 3 slices of rasher’s bacon, diced)
    • Streaky bacon is the typical North American bacon that’s higher in fat and crisps up when cooked.
    • Rasher’s bacon is the typical Australian bacon that’s leaner and essentially like ham.
    • I prefer streaky bacon for this recipe because it gives it an extra crispy texture and the bacon flavour is more prominent however it’s not always easy to find in Australia (especially in a pandemic) so I’ve used rasher’s bacon for the photos.
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 beef stock cubes
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Directions:

Defrost your peas by placing them in a bowl filled with room temperature water. Keep replacing the water every 15-20 mins until completely defrosted then drain. You can alternatively defrost them the night before.

Dissolve two beef stock cubes in 1 cup (250ml) of warm water. Set aside.

Heat a skillet or pot on MEDIUM heat and sauté the garlic, onion and bacon together until the onions are tender and the bacon is browned (and crispy if using streaky bacon).

You shouldn’t need to add any oil because the fat from the bacon should melt and provide the oil needed, however if you’re using a leaner cut of bacon like rasher’s bacon, add 1 tablespoon of oil to the pan.

Remove half of the bacon/onion mixture from the pan and set aside. Add the defrosted peas and beef stock to the pan and stir. Let it come to a simmer then take the peas out and transfer it to a blender or food processor (leave excess liquid in the skillet). Pulse it a few times until you get a thick paste. Add a few spoonfuls of the liquid in the pan if your paste is too dry and difficult to pulse.

Pour the contents back into the skillet and stir together with the liquid and add in the reserved bacon/onion mixture. Simmer the peas until the liquid has evaporated and you end up with a thick pasty consistency. Taste and adjust salt and pepper. Done!

Summarized Recipe:

Bacon Mashed Peas

Date Published: August 20th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 20th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: sides
Serves: 4 (makes one big bowl) | Prep time: 5 mins | Cook time: 20 mins

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups frozen peas
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 6 strips of “streaky bacon”, diced (or 3 slices of rasher’s bacon, diced)
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 beef stock cubes
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Defrost your peas by placing them in a bowl filled with room temperature water. Keep replacing the water every 15-20 mins until completely defrosted then drain. You can alternatively defrost them the night before.
  2. Dissolve two beef stock cubes in 1 cup (250ml) of warm water. Set aside.
  3. Heat a skillet or pot on MEDIUM heat and sauté the garlic, onion and bacon together until the onions are tender and the bacon is browned (and crispy if using streaky bacon).
    • You shouldn’t need to add any oil because the fat from the bacon should melt and provide the oil needed, however if you’re using a leaner cut of bacon like rasher’s bacon, add 1 tablespoon of oil to the pan.
  4. Remove half of the bacon/onion mixture from the pan and set aside. Add the defrosted peas and beef stock to the pan and stir. Let it come to a simmer then take the peas out and transfer it to a blender or food processor (leave excess liquid in the skillet). Pulse it a few times until you get a thick paste. Add a few spoonfuls of the liquid in the pan if your paste is too dry and difficult to pulse.
  5. Pour the contents back into the skillet and stir together with the liquid and add in the reserved bacon/onion mixture. Simmer the peas until the liquid has evaporated and you end up with a thick pasty consistency. Taste and adjust salt and pepper. Done!

How to butterfly a Chicken Breast


Date Published: August 20th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 20th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: how-to
Serves: — | Prep time: 5 mins | Cook time:

Butterflying a chicken breast sounds fancy but it’s so much easier than I initially thought. You’re essentially just cutting the the thickness of the breast in half and opening it up, effectively doubling the size of the chicken! This is how you get giant schnitzels at restaurants and if you pound down the breast it becomes even bigger like the famous Hot Star Taiwanese Big Fried Chicken.

Other than doubling the size of your chicken, butterflying a chicken breast also evens out the thickness and helps the chicken cook more uniformly, especially when you’re breading it for a parma, schnitzel, or a katsu. It only takes a couple of minutes and all you need is a knife and cutting board.

I’ve included photos and tried to be as descriptive as I can in how to butterfly a breast. If you have any comments or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you in the comment section! Let me know if a video would be helpful as well. You can follow me on instagram, youtube and facebook to see all the recipes I post!

Happy cooking!

What you’ll need:

  • Chicken breast
  • Cutting board
  • Sharp kitchen knife

Directions:

  1. Start off by rinsing your chicken breasts and pat them dry with paper towels. Lay them flat on a chopping board.
The breast on the left has the side piece cut off whereas the right breast still has it intact for comparison.

2. Cut off the small side piece of meat located on one side of the breast (see photo above). Note: Some butchers sell chicken breast with this small piece already cut off so don’t worry if you can’t locate yours. Set aside this piece for another use.

Starting at the thicker side, slice the breast in half, keeping your knife parallel with the chopping board but don’t cut all the way through

3. Starting at the thicker side (opposite side of where you just cut off the small side piece), take your knife and cut the thickness of the breast in half, keeping the knife parallel to the chopping board. Do NOT cut all the way through the breast. Stop when there’s about 2cm left from the edge, then open up the breast.

Stop cutting when you get near the end of the breast. Open it up and done!

4. Congratulations! You have just butterflied a chicken breast. Repeat with the other breasts.

Ta-da! Two butterflied chicken breasts

Recipes that use this method:

Cheesy Thai Red Curry Pork Stuffed Paratha


Date Published: August 19th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 19th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: snacks, asian
Serves: 8 slices | Prep time: 15mins + resting time | Cook time: 30mins

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Have you ever made too much filling for the amount of wrappers you have and didn’t know what to do with it but don’t want to throw it away? This happens to me more often than I would like to admit. Dumplings. Spanakopita. Curry puffs. Ravioli. Well get ready for the solution to all your leftover fillings: stuffed parathas! I got this idea from El Mundo Eats where I’ve had their Chicken Keema Paratha recipe saved on my “to make” list for ages. I didn’t have any chicken mince on hand, but I did have some leftover pork mince from making spring rolls last week and also homemade Thai red curry paste that I’ve been meaning to experiment with more. An hour later, this delicious creation was born! The pork filling tastes just like a Thai red curry with the use of my homemade red curry paste and coconut milk. I also added cheese to mellow out all the flavours and to help everything stick together more. I wish I took more photos of the process but I was just playing around in the kitchen and didn’t actually expect this to turn out sooo good! It’s kind of like a quesadilla but with more bread and less messy to eat. You can serve it with any kind of dipping sauce you like or eat it on its own. You could even make a sweet version!

Any filling should work with this dough as long as it’s not too saucy (it will leak when you roll it) and cooked. You’re not cooking the parathas for very long, so raw filling most likely won’t cook enough before the parathas are ready. I’ve made one giant paratha with this recipe but you can definitely split the dough and make multiple smaller stuffed parathas if you like – you’re only limited by the size of your pan. The dough is super easy and doesn’t require any yeast or proofing. You only need a few ingredients and minimal kneading to make the dough.

Anyways, without further ado, here’s the recipe! If you have any comments or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you in the comment section! You can follow me on instagram, youtube and facebook to see all the recipes I post!

Happy cooking!

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • Paratha dough:
    • 2 1/4 cup (290g) all purpose flour
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 1 Tbsp olive oil
    • 2/3 cup (160ml) water
  • Filling:
    • 3 Tbsps homemade Thai red curry paste
    • 250g pork (or chicken) mince
    • 1/4 cup coconut milk
    • 1/2 Tbsp fish sauce (or more to taste)
    • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

*Note: In the photos I added half a cup of chopped black fungus because I had some on hand that I needed to use up. It doesn’t add much flavour to the dish, just an extra texture. I didn’t include it in the recipe list because it’s not a common ingredient many people have and isn’t essential to the flavours, but feel free to add it in if you like.

Directions:

Make the paratha dough: combine all the ingredients together in a bowl and mix with your hands until you get a rough loose dough. Turn the contents of the bowl out onto a flat surface and knead the dough until all the flour is incorporated and you get a smooth ball. Cover the dough with a clean kitchen towel and let it rest for 30 minutes.

Make the filling: While the dough rests, warm a skillet on medium heat and add the red curry paste to the dry pan to toast for a few minutes until some of the water evaporates and it becomes fragrant (~2 minutes). Add in the pork mince and sauté with the curry paste until the pork is nearly cooked, then add in the coconut milk and fish sauce. Continue to sauté until the pork is fully cooked and liquids evaporate. Taste and adjust flavours as needed. Place the filling in a bowl and set aside to cool.

Assemble: Once the filling has cooled and the dough has rested, assemble the paratha. Make sure you have a large pan 30cm wide that the paratha will fit in. If not, divide the dough into half or quarters and make multiple small stuffed parathas. Roll out the dough into a flat circle about 7mm thick. Mix the shredded cheese with the pork filling and pour the contents into the centre of the dough. Bring the edges of the dough together over the filling to form a ball, try to squeeze out any air pockets before you seal it. Make sure the top is sealed well. Gently press down on the dough ball to flatten it and then use a rolling pin and carefully flatten the ball in all directions until roughly 1cm thick. You may be able to see the filling just under the dough.

Cook: Heat a large skillet on medium heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil to the skillet and swirl it around. Place the stuffed paratha onto the pan and cook until the underside is toasty and golden brown (~5-8mins). Brush a bit of olive oil on the top of the paratha then flip and cook on the other side until golden. Remove from heat and slice into pieces and serve immediately. Enjoy!

Summarized Recipe:

Cheesy Thai Red Curry Pork Stuffed Paratha

Date Published: August 19th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 19th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: snacks, asian
Serves: 8 slices | Prep time: 15mins + resting time | Cook time: 30mins

Ingredients:

  • Paratha dough:
    • 2 1/4 cup (290g) all purpose flour
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 1 Tbsp olive oil
    • 2/3 cup (160ml) water
  • Filling:
    • 3 Tbsps homemade Thai red curry paste
    • 250g pork (or chicken) mince
    • 1/4 cup coconut milk
    • 1/2 Tbsp fish sauce (or more to taste)
    • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:

  1. Make the paratha dough: combine all the ingredients together in a bowl and mix with your hands until you get a rough loose dough. Turn the contents of the bowl out onto a flat surface and knead the dough until all the flour is incorporated and you get a smooth ball. Cover the dough with a clean kitchen towel and let it rest for 30 minutes.
  2. Make the filling: While the dough rests, warm a skillet on medium heat and add the red curry paste to the dry pan to toast for a few minutes until some of the water evaporates and it becomes fragrant (~2 minutes). Add in the pork mince and sauté with the curry paste until the pork is nearly cooked, then add in the coconut milk and fish sauce. Continue to sauté until the pork is fully cooked and liquids evaporate. Taste and adjust flavours as needed. Place the filling in a bowl and set aside to cool.
  3. Assemble: Once the filling has cooled and the dough has rested, assemble the paratha. Make sure you have a large pan 30cm wide that the paratha will fit in. If not, divide the dough into half or quarters and make multiple small stuffed parathas. Roll out the dough into a flat circle about 7mm thick. Mix the shredded cheese with the pork filling and pour the contents into the centre of the dough. Bring the edges of the dough together over the filling to form a ball, try to squeeze out any air pockets before you seal it. Make sure the top is sealed well. Gently press down on the dough ball to flatten it and then use a rolling pin and carefully flatten the ball in all directions until roughly 1cm thick. You may be able to see the filling just under the dough.
  4. Cook: Heat a large skillet on medium heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil to the skillet and swirl it around. Place the stuffed paratha onto the pan and cook until the underside is toasty and golden brown (~5-8mins). Brush a bit of olive oil on the top of the paratha then flip and cook on the other side until golden. Remove from heat and slice into pieces and serve immediately. Enjoy!

Classic Greek Salad


Date Published: August 19th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 19th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: salads, vegetarian, easy
Serves: 4 (as side servings) | Prep time: 20 mins | Mix time: 30 secs

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I love Greek salad. It’s so refreshing and easy to make, perfect for a hot summer’s day or paired with a delicious roast lamb. The dressing only takes 3 ingredients to make and the salad components are easily adjustable to whatever proportion you like. Toby’s not a big fan of olives so I tend to go easy on them when I’m making this salad but feel free to double or even triple the amount of any of the salad ingredients. This salad is healthy (if you don’t go crazy on the feta) and so delicious. If you’re making this ahead of time, I’d suggest holding off on the dressing until right before you serve it because the salt content from the dressing will draw out water from the veg and you’ll end up with a soggy salad.

Anyways, without further ado, here’s the recipe! If you have any comments or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you in the comment section! You can follow me on instagram, youtube and facebook to see all the recipes I post!

Happy cooking!

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • Dressing:
    • 1/4 cup olive oil
    • 3 tsps lemon juice
    • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • Salad:
    • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved (or 3 large ripe tomatoes, chopped)
    • 2 medium Lebanese cucumbers, chopped
    • 1 small red onion, chopped or sliced
    • 1 cup feta cheese, roughly chopped or crumbled
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
    • 15 black olives, pitted and sliced (or more to taste)
    • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Make the dressing by whisking together the olive oil, lemon juice and red wine vinegar in a bowl. Set aside.

Assemble the salad by mixing the rest of the ingredients into a large bowl: tomatoes, cucumbers, red onion, feta, oregano, and olives.

Pour the dressing over the salad and toss. Salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy!

*Note: if you’re making this ahead of time, don’t add the dressing until you’re ready to serve, otherwise the salt content from the dressing will cause the veg in the salad to release their liquids and you’ll end up with a wet sloppy salad.

Summarized Recipe:

Classic Greek Salad

Date Published: August 19th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 19th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: salads, vegetarian, easy, healthy
Serves: 4 (as side servings) | Prep time: 20 mins | Mix time: 30 secs

Ingredients:

  • Dressing:
    • 1/4 cup olive oil
    • 3 tsps lemon juice
    • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • Salad:
    • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved (or 3 large ripe tomatoes, chopped)
    • 2 medium Lebanese cucumbers, chopped
    • 1 small red onion, chopped or sliced
    • 1 cup feta cheese, roughly chopped or crumbled
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
    • 15 black olives, pitted and sliced (or more to taste)
    • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Make the dressing by whisking together the olive oil, lemon juice and red wine vinegar in a bowl. Set aside.
  2. Assemble the salad by mixing the rest of the ingredients into a large bowl: tomatoes, cucumbers, red onion, feta, oregano, and olives.
  3. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss. Salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy!
    • *Note: if you’re making this ahead of time, don’t add the dressing until you’re ready to serve, otherwise the salt content from the dressing will cause the veg in the salad to release their liquids and you’ll end up with a wet sloppy salad.

Vietnamese Fish Sauce (Nuoc mam)


Date Published: August 19th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 19th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: sauces, dips, asian
Serves: 1/2 cup | Prep time: 10 mins | Mix time: 30 seconds

Jump to recipe |

Nuoc mam is a staple in Vietnamese cuisine. You may also see it commonly referred to as “nuoc cham” in many restaurants. I’ve been told “nuoc cham” means ‘sauce’ in Vietnamese whereas “nuoc mam” is more specifically ‘fish sauce’ which would be more accurate in this case. Whichever name you call it, it is delicious. It’s a sauce made of sugar, garlic, lime, chillies, and fish sauce (shocker), giving it a salty, sweet, sour and a little spicy taste all in one sauce! It’s often used as a dipping sauce (think lemongrass pork, prawn spring rolls…mmmm) or as a dressing drizzled over a bowl of vermicelli with veg. If you’ve never had it before, it smells a little funky but adds SO much flavour to a dish. It’s so simple to make and because of the high acidity content of the ingredients, it keeps for a very long time in the fridge so you can make a buttload and always have some on hand for a quick meal.

Anyways, without further ado, here’s the recipe! If you have any comments or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you in the comment section! You can follow me on instagram, youtube and facebook to see all the recipes I post!

Happy cooking!

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • 3 Tbsps warm water
  • 1 Tbsp caster sugar
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice (~1 lime)
  • 2 Tbsps fish sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 bird’s eye chillies, finely chopped

Directions:

Dissolve the caster sugar in the warm water then add the rest of the ingredients to the bowl. Mix and taste. Adjust ingredients as needed. Done!

More sour = add more lime juice
More salty = add more fish sauce
More sweet = add more sugar
More spicy = more chillies

Summarized Recipe:

Vietnamese Fish Sauce (Nuoc mam)

Date Published: August 19th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 19th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: sauces, dips, asian
Serves: 1/2 cup | Prep time: 10 mins | Mix time: 30 seconds

Ingredients:

  • 3 Tbsps warm water
  • 1 Tbsp caster sugar
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice (~1 lime)
  • 2 Tbsps fish sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 bird’s eye chillies, finely chopped

Directions:

  1. In a bowl, dissolve the sugar in the warm water.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients to the bowl and mix. Taste and adjust ingredients as needed. Done!

Feel free to make a buttload. It keeps really well.

So Easy Flatbread for Wraps


Date Published: August 19th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 19th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: breads, easy
Serves: 4 medium flatbreads | Prep time: 5mins + 30mins rest | Cook time: 20 mins (5 mins per flatbread)

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Flatbread is the overarching term for a flat piece of bread (duh) which encompasses countless variations from all over the world including paratha, roti, naan, pita, bing…etc. This basic recipe was adapted from Julie Goodwin and makes a flatbread that best resembles a paratha x pita with slightly crispy edges and a soft centre that’s perfect for wraps. You can even roll it out thinner and make pita chips for dipping! (If you’re looking for a more sturdy flatbread for pizzas, check out my basic dough recipe.) There are only a few ingredients you’ll need for this recipe and it is so simple and straight forward that you’ll never buy store-bought wraps ever again! You don’t even need to turn on the oven or proof the dough. Just mix the ingredients into a bowl, knead for a couple minutes then rest it for 30 mins and you’re ready to cook it! There’s no baking involved, just cook it on a pan for a few minutes on each side and you’re ready to serve. Easy, huh?

This recipe makes 4 medium pieces of wraps. If you prefer larger full-sized wraps then double the recipe and divide your dough balls into 6 pieces instead of 4. I love making these because I can control how thick, thin, or large I want my wraps and also control how crispy and toasty it is. I can make as many as I need and not worry about leftover wraps that might go mouldy in a few days if I forget to use them and there’s also no waste from food packaging. It’s a win-win!

Anyways, without further ado, here’s the recipe! If you have any comments or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you in the comment section! You can follow me on instagram, youtube and facebook to see all the recipes I post!

Happy cooking!

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • 2 cups (300g) all purpose flour + more for dusting
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3 1/2 Tbsp (50ml) olive oil
  • 3/4 cup (185ml) milk

You can also sub the olive oil in the dough for butter to make it more buttery, but the taste difference is pretty minimal so I omit it for the health reasons.

You can also use whole wheat flour but the result will be a bit more dense and dry. It also won’t puff up on the stove and you may need to add more oil.

Directions:

In a large wide-based bowl, mix the flour and salt together. Make a well in the centre of the flour and add in the olive oil and milk to the centre.

Mix the ingredients together with your hands by bringing in the flour from the sides of the bowl into the centre until you get a rough sticky dough. Knead the dough in the bowl (or onto a flat surface if your bowl is too small) for about 2-3 minutes until you get a smooth elastic dough ball. You can add more flour as you knead if your dough ball is sticky. Cover your dough with a clean tea towel and let it rest for 30mins at room temperature.

Alternatively you can also use a stand mixer for this step but there’s so little kneading required that I couldn’t be bothered getting out my machine and washing extra bowls.

After 30mins, divide the dough into 4 equal pieces and roll each piece out to about 3-5mm thickness.

Rolling it out thinner makes it crispy and difficult to use as a wrap without cracking (but might make some good chips for dipping!). Rolling it too thick will result in a doughy dense flatbread.

Heat a skillet on MED heat and when the pan is heated, add a small drizzle of olive oil (~1 tsp) and swirl it around so it coats the pan. Put a rolled out dough onto the oiled pan. After a few minutes the flatbread may form puffy pockets of air (some bigger than others) – this is normal but not all flatbreads will puff up so don’t worry if yours doesn’t. Check the bottom of the flatbread and flip it when you see toasted golden brown spots (~3 mins). Cook again on the other side until golden. Repeat this cooking method with the other 3 flatbreads, adding a small amount of oil to the pan each time you start cooking a new dough. Stack the finished flatbreads on top of each other to keep them soft and warm until ready to serve. Done!

Note: You can make these ahead of time and keep it in the fridge covered. Just microwave them when you’re ready to use or toast them in the oven until warm. You can also freeze the cooked bread or keep the dough in the refrigerator for a couple days, wrapped.

I used this flatbread to make a wrap with leftover garlic rosemary lamb roast, creamy mint yogurt sauce and quinoa with dill. It was SO good!

Summarized Recipe:

So Easy Flatbread for Wraps

Date Published: August 19th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 19th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: breads, easy
Serves: 4 medium flatbreads | Prep time: 5mins + 30mins rest | Cook time: 20 mins (5 mins per flatbread)

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups (300g) all purpose flour + more for dusting
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3 1/2 Tbsp (50ml) olive oil
  • 3/4 cup (185ml) milk

Directions:

  1. In a large wide-based bowl, mix the flour and salt together.
  2. Make a well in the centre of the flour and add in the olive oil and milk to the centre.
  3. Mix the ingredients together with your hands by bringing in the flour from the sides of the bowl into the centre until you get a rough sticky dough. Knead the dough in the bowl (or onto a flat surface if your bowl is too small) for about 2-3 minutes until you get a smooth elastic dough ball. You can add more flour as you knead if your dough ball is sticky.
  4. Cover your dough with a clean tea towel and let it rest for 30mins at room temperature.
  5. After 30mins, divide the dough into 4 equal pieces and roll each piece out to about 3-5mm thickness.
  6. Heat a skillet on MED heat and when the pan is heated, add a small drizzle of olive oil (~1 tsp) and swirl it around so it coats the pan. Put a rolled out dough into the oiled pan and cook until you see toasted golden brown spots on both sides (~3-5 mins per side) on both sides. Repeat this cooking method with the other 3 flatbreads, adding a small amount of oil to the pan each time you start cooking a new dough. Stack the finished flatbreads on top of each other to keep them soft and warm until ready to serve. Done!

Note: You can make these ahead of time and keep it in the fridge covered. Just microwave them when you’re ready to use or toast them in the oven until warm. You can also freeze the cooked bread or keep the dough in the refrigerator for a couple days, wrapped.

Roast Lamb with Garlic Rosemary Rub


Date Published: August 19th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 19th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: mains, easy
Serves: 4 | Prep time: 15 mins | Cook time: 90 mins

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A few months ago Toby’s parents came home with a big leg of lamb and challenged us to cook it. We haven’t made many roasts before because it’s always too much food when it’s usually just the two of us and I had little to no experience cooking big hunks of meat because it’s not something I grew up with eating in a traditional Asian household. Toby was excited for the challenge and found an amazing recipe for a lamb roast from Damn Delicious – which is exactly where this recipe has been adapted from. This lamb is SO damn good and it came out perfectly the first time. We were all blown away by it and have since made it 3 more times! The flavourful garlic rosemary rub works so well with this lamb and even better when paired with this creamy mint yogurt sauce.

Making a roast lamb is so much easier than we thought. Just massage the garlic rosemary rub all over the lamb and pop it in the oven and wait. Done! The only thing I would definitely suggest getting is a meat thermometer if you don’t have one. It’s a fantastic tool to check the doneness of your meat without having to slice into it and let the juices escape as well as having a prettier presentation when serving. They’re inexpensive and costs around $10-15 for a decent one. The original recipe calls for bone-in lamb but you can use a boneless lamb roast and have the exact same results (you may need to adjust the cooking time a little).

Anyways, without further ado, here’s the recipe! If you have any comments or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you in the comment section! You can follow me on instagram, youtube and facebook to see all the recipes I post!

Happy cooking!

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • Garlic Rosemary Rub:
    • 4 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1 Tbsp olive oil
    • 1 Tbsp fresh rosemary leaves, finely chopped
    • 1 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
    • 1 Tbsp dijon mustard
    • 1 Tbsp salt
    • 2 tsps ground black pepper
  • 2kg lamb roast without bone or 2.5-3kg leg of lamb bone-in
    • If you’re using a smaller or larger lamb, make sure you adjust the amount of rub you use accordingly so you don’t end up with an overly salty smaller lamb or an under-seasoned larger lamb.

Directions:

Preheat oven to 180˚C.

Make the rub: In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients for the rub: garlic, olive oil, rosemary, thyme, dijon, salt and pepper. (If you’re feeling lazy you can alternatively combine it all in a food processor and blitz to save time on chopping.) Set aside.

Rinse and pat your lamb dry. Use a sharp knife to shallow score the top of the lamb (this helps the rub seep through).

Place the lamb (fat side up) in a roasting pan lined with a baking mat or aluminum foil. Rub the rosemary garlic rub all over the lamb, getting into the crevices. You do NOT need to use the whole rub if you have a smaller lamb (it may become too salty).

Bake in the preheated oven on the middle rack until the internal temperature reaches 58-60˚C (135F) for med-rare to medium doneness (place your thermometer in the centre of the lamb at the thickest part or near the bone to measure). If you don’t have a thermometer, slice your lamb at the thickest part to check for doneness. It will take roughly 1.5 hours to cook, depending on the size of your lamb. Baste the lamb in its juices every half an hour. If you find that the outside of your lamb is starting to burn before you reach the designated internal temperature, lightly cover the outside of the lamb with some aluminum foil to protect from the heat while the rest of the lamb continues to cook.

Once it’s done, take out the lamb and let it rest for 15 mins to let the juices redistribute before slicing. The lamb will continue to cook another 5˚C while resting.

Slice and serve immediately!

P.S. Slice up any leftovers and store it with the remaining juices and make a delicious wrap the next day! In this photo I’ve served the lamb over homemade flatbread with leftover mint yogurt sauce and some cooked quinoa mixed with dill.

Summarized Recipe:

Lamb Roast with Garlic Rosemary Rub

Date Published: August 19th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 19th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: mains, easy
Serves: 4 | Prep time: 15 mins | Cook time: 90 mins

Ingredients:

  • Garlic Rosemary Rub:
    • 4 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1 Tbsp olive oil
    • 1 Tbsp fresh rosemary leaves, finely chopped
    • 1 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
    • 1 Tbsp dijon mustard
    • 1 Tbsp salt
    • 2 tsps ground black pepper
  • 2kg lamb roast without bone or 2.5-3kg leg of lamb bone-in
    • If you’re using a smaller or larger lamb, make sure you adjust the amount of rub you use accordingly so you don’t end up with an overly salty smaller lamb or an under-seasoned larger lamb.

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 180˚C.
  2. Make the rub: In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients for the rub: garlic, olive oil, rosemary, thyme, dijon, salt and pepper.
  3. Rinse and pat your lamb dry. Use a sharp knife to shallow score the top of the lamb.
  4. Place the lamb (fat side up) in a roasting pan lined with a baking mat or aluminum foil. Rub the rosemary garlic rub all over the lamb, getting into the crevices. You do NOT need to use the whole rub if you have a smaller lamb (it may become too salty).
  5. Bake in the preheated oven on the middle rack until the internal temperature reaches 58-60˚C (135F) for med-rare to medium doneness (place your thermometer in the centre of the lamb at the thickest part or near the bone to measure). If you don’t have a thermometer, slice your lamb at the thickest part to check for doneness. It will take roughly 1.5 hours to cook, depending on the size of your lamb. Baste the lamb in its juices every half an hour. If you find that the outside of your lamb is starting to burn before you reach the designated internal temperature, lightly cover the outside of the lamb with some aluminum foil to protect from the heat while the rest of the lamb continues to cook.
  6. Once it’s done, take out the lamb and let it rest for 15 mins to let the juices redistribute before slicing. The lamb will continue to cook another 5˚C while resting.
  7. Slice and serve immediately!

Creamy Mint Yogurt Sauce


Date Published: August 19th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 19th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: sauces/dips, easy
Serves: 1 cup | Prep time: 10 mins | Cook time: 30 secs

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Cool boy Sheldon helping out with harvesting mint from the garden

Lamb is a pretty popular meat in Australia and it’s commonly paired with a mint sauce/jelly. Toby and I made our first roast lamb a couple months ago and it was so delicious that we’ve made it 3 more times since (recipe here). The lamb we made had such beautiful strong flavours from the rub that I decided to make a more subtle mint sauce using Greek yogurt. The sauce was a big hit with the fam and I’m sharing it here with you today! There’s only a few ingredients required to make this creamy sauce. The mint flavour is more subtle compared to a traditional mint sauce but it works well with the lemon and garlic and the addition of cumin adds a little extra depth to compliment the lamb. You can also use this sauce as a dressing over a quick cucumber salad to have on its own or as a side with the lamb.

Anyways, without further ado, here’s the recipe! If you have any comments or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you in the comment section! You can follow me on instagram, youtube and facebook to see all the recipes I post!

Happy cooking!

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • 1 cup (245g) greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup mint leaves, chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

Directions:

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Taste adjust lemon, salt or pepper as needed. Done!

Try it with the garlic rosemary lamb roast. Mmmmmm.

Summarized Recipe:

Creamy Mint Yogurt Sauce

Date Published: August 18th, 2020 | Last Updated: August 18th, 2020
Author: Abby |Category: sauces/dips, easy
Serves: 1 cup | Prep time: 10 mins | Cook time: 30 secs

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (245g) greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup mint leaves, chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

Directions:

  1. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Taste adjust lemon, salt or pepper as needed. Done!