Thursday, March 22, 2012

{Cinnamon Bun Cake}

I've made cinnamon buns before and frankly mine were a bit meh, don't get me wrong I love a cinnamon bun I mean really, who doesn't? but all that waiting I don't have the time for it, actually that's a lie who am I kidding I'm a stay at home mum I do have time to let dough sit around and rise but sometimes I just don't want to.

This my darlings is a winner of a cake, its just like a cinnamon bun, its actually a little bit evil, but evil in a good way, needless to say I have dispatched a large portion of it to my neighbours and a pal who is a cinnamon roll aficionado mostly for my own good, it would be a fab addition to an easter brunch.

... the cake
3 cups self-raising flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups milk
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
110g butter, melted

...the marble
220g butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp flour
1 tbsp cinnamon

...the glaze
2 cups icing sugar
4 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 180.  Into a bowl add the flour, salt, sugar, milk, eggs and vanilla, stir till combined, then slowly stir in the melted butter. Pour batter into a greased baking tin (26cm round at least, its big).

In another bowl, mix the 220g of softened butter, brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon until well combined. Drop evenly over cake batter by the tablespoonfuls and use a knife to marble.

Bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until skewer comes out nearly clean from the centre of cake.

For the glaze mix icing sugar, milk and vanilla in a bowl. Whisk until smooth and drizzle over warm cake. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


Sometimes I just have to have sourcream.  Sometimes I make something just so I can have sourcream.  This is one of those dinners, you can put anything in a quesadilla but this is our favourite combo, its so full of goodies and so healthy accept for the before mentioned sourcream and the cheese but then,  hells bells a girls gotta eat dairy, especially an old girl like me who is hurtling towards forty like nobodies business, gotta keep those calcium levels up and well if that means more sourcream then so be it.

...the quesadillas
420g tin kidney beans, rinsed
200g jar taco sauce (we like it hot)
1 shallot, sliced
2 corn cobbs, shaved
1 avocado, diced
1 bunch coriander, chopped
juice of a lime
flour tortillas (this filling is enough for 10)
grated cheese
sourcream (plenty)

Mix everything thing together except for the tortillas the cheese and the sourcream (deeerrr).

We like a quesadilla stack but you can do singles too, lay a tortilla flat and spread with some bean mix then a bit of cheese then another tortilla and a bit more bean mix, bit more cheese and top tortilla.  Transfer it into a frypan and cook gently over medium heat till golden and then carefully flip it, cook the other side till golden, slide out of the pan, slice and serve with that sourcream I keep going on about.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

{Cypriot Shepards Pie}

This recipe belongs to my homegirl Annabel Langbein, its a little bit posh just like her, I just adore listening to her speak, she is fabulous, how did she get so posh in nz anyway? This easy dinner is completely delicious, I changed a couple of the quantities and I didn't pull the carrots from my rambling wanaka vegetable patch but the idea is all hers. Go Annabel. 

I served mine in sweet little individual soup bowls, it made six serves that way or you can do one big one and let everyone dig in. Sooooooo full of goodness, your night vision will be unrivaled after eating this.

...the bottom
3 tbsp olive oil
600g lean lamb mince
1 large onion, diced
1 large carrot, grated
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tbsp grated ginger
2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 tbsp tomato paste
400g tin diced tomatoes
3 cups vegetable stock
2 tsp rosemary
small bunch finely chopped parsley

...the top
6 large carrots
4 medium parnsips
4 tbsp butter
2 tsp tarragon

So lets start with the mince, pop some oil in your frypan, season the lamb mince and cook it until browned (do it in two batches), then pop it on a plate. Add the onion, garlic, ginger, cumin and cinnamon and cook over a medium heat till softened, about 8 minutes.

Stir in the tomato paste, cook it off for a few minutes then add the lamb, carrot, tomatoes, stock and rosemary and simmer for about 40 minutes till thick and delicious, stir thru the parsley and check the seasoning then pop it into your choice of baking dish.

For the mash peel and dice the carrots and parsnips boil in salted water until tender about 30 minutes should do it then drain thoroughly and mash with the butter and tarragon, season and dollop on top of the mince then bake at 200 for 30 - 40 minutes till its golden and bubbling.