Tag Archives: cooking

Beetroot relish

There’s a cafe in North Melbourne, called Pocket, which serves a delicious breakfast bagel of bacon, fried egg, cheese and beetroot relish.  Inspired by this, and having finished a jar of chutney a friend had given us, I decided to make my own beetroot relish.

The recipe below is a combination of three online recipes.  Give it a go and feel free to tweak the ingredients to come up with your own version!  I’ve been using the relish in my own egg and bacon muffins, on home made hamburgers and with corned silverside.  It’s really quite versatile, so don’t be afraid to experiment.

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Cooking with Poo

Today was my last day in Thailand. Victoria and I had booked a cooking class at the Helping Hands Thai Cooking school. The lessons are run by a lady called Poo (Poo is actually her nick name, derived from her full name Champoo – Thai for rose apple). Poo lives in the Klong Toey area of Bangkok, where she used to run a small food stall. She was only making just enough money to feed her family, when the Helping Hands organisation approached her and helped to set up a cooking school. With some help from her catchy nickname, her Cooking With Poo classes are now very popular! Other residents of Klong Toey also benefit from the business, supplying aprons, cloth bags and raw materials used in the classes. If you’re interested in the class, I’d highly recommend it! Check out the Cooking with Poo website or Facebook page.

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Posted from Bangkok, Bangkok, Thailand.

Pork Dumplings

Dumplings are one of my favourite Asian foods, great for a snack or as a meal! When I learnt to make dumplings, I was surprised how easy they are. Folding them is a bit time consuming, but it’s definitely worth the effort.

All the ingredients are generally available at a regular supermarket, but you’ll most likely need to find an Asian grocer to buy the dumpling wraps. There are quite a few around in Melbourne, so they’re not that difficult to source. They’re also incredibly cheap, costing only a couple of dollars for a pack of almost 100 wraps.

Once you’ve made your dumplings, you can either cook them straight away or store them in the freezer to eat later. Check out my tip below if your’e going to freeze them.

Read on to make your own dumplings!

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Pancakes with Caramel Sauce and Banana

I was just tidying out my drafts folder, and found this recipe from March last year! Not sure why I never actually posted it, but this is a very easy and very yummy breakfast indulgence.

Caramel Sauce


  • 1 1/2 cups caster sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2/3 cups brown sugar
  • 300mL thickened cream


Combine the caster sugar and water in a small saucepan and stir over low heat until the sugar dissolves.

Increase heat to medium-high and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to medium and boil, uncovered, without stirring for 10 minutes or until the mixture turns a light golden colour.

Remove from heat and stir in the brown sugar. Stir in cream until well combined, then return to medium heat and cook, stirring, for two minutes until smooth.

The caramel will thicken as it cools, and can be stored in a jar in the fridge to use later if you wish.  Just reheat over the stove or in the microwave when you’re ready to use it.


You can use any pancake recipe, but here’s the one I followed.


  • 1 cup self raising flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • milk


Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl.  Add the egg, and some milk.  Gradually add milk while stirring until a smooth batter forms.

Allow the mixture to sit for 15-30 minutes before cooking.

Heat pan over medium heat.  Lightly grease with butter, then pour about 1/4-1/3 cup pancake batter onto the pan.  Cook for about 3-4 minutes, or until bubbles form across the surface.  Flip and cook for a further 3-4 minutes until cooked through.

Serve with freshly sliced banana and hot caramel sauce.

Fruit Mince Pies


This is a recipe I’ve put together from a number of sources, and tweaked over the last couple of years.  Please be aware that the quantities for the fruit mince are enough to make about 60-70 pies, while the pastry will make about 30.  The fruit mince filling will keep in the fridge for several weeks, so I normally make a couple of batches of pastry over a few weeks and keep using the same batch of filling.  Alternatively, you could just halve the filling ingredients to make the right quantity for a single batch of pastry.

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