Christmas Food Pt 2

This is part of a series of posts focusing on Christmas. You can see all my Christmas posts here.

So back into it. Two sauces down, two to go. Well that was the plan. After cooking some caramelised onions the other night I decided to go with them instead of tomato sauce.

Caramelised Onions (sourced from

Makes 4 cups (original recipe was 1 cup)

  • 8 tbs olive oil
  • 12 large red or brown onions, sliced
  • 8 tbs brown sugar
  • 4-8 tbs balsamic vinegar
  1. Heat oil in a large frypan over low heat. Add the onions and a good pinch of salt and cook very slowly for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent them from catching. Don’t be tempted to turn the heat up, as you don’t want the onions to burn.
  2. When onions are softened and tinged golden, add sugar and balsamic – this will start the caramelisation process. Cook onion over low heat for a further 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sticky and caramelised. Use immediately, or store in the fridge, in a sterilised jar or plastic container, and use when required.

and the last was a sweet Caramel.

Caramel Sauce (sourced from

Makes 8 cups (original recipe was for 2 cups)

  • 160g butter (say margarine but we only ever have butter in the house)
  • 4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 4 x 375ml Carnation light & creamy evaporated milk
  • 500g marshmallows

Combine butter and sugar in a saucepan over a medium heat. Stir until sugar dissolves and mixture comes to the boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 1 minute. Pour evaporated milk into mixture and stir until well combined. Add marshmallows and stir until marshmallows melt. Pour into a serving jug and set aside to cool slightly.

I’ll take a break from the foodie posts for a couple of days and be back later with some ideas for presents.

Christmas Food Pt 1

This is part of a series of posts focusing on Christmas. You can see all my Christmas posts here.

I’m lucky that none of my family read my blog. Why? Because it means I can share stuff with you all and they won’t know. *giggle*  Not that I would you know but I can share what I’m getting them all for Christmas

This year hubby and I decided that we’d be doing a mostly homemade Christmas this year. So I’m creating a gift basket for the parents & siblings. Lots of yummy goodies. And I thought, in the spirit of the season, I’d share the recipes with you all. You know, in case you decide you want to try them for yourself. Sharing and all

I started with the first of four sauces I’m making (2 sweet & 2 savoury)

Mint Sauce (sourced from

Makes 4 cups (original recipe was for 1 cup)

  • 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 2 cups cold water
  • finely chopped fresh mint leaves (I used a BIG bunch)

Place vinegar, sugar and cold water in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer, for 10 minutes or until slightly thickened. Remove from heat. Add mint. Stir to combine. Cool to room temperature. Bottle.

Note: I did add a few extras, like a couple of teaspoons of mint jelly. I also topped the bottles up with a little extra cider vinegar/water.

next up I did a sweet – chocolate (yum)

Chocolate Sauce (sourced from

Makes 6 cups (original recipe was for 1 1/2 cups)

  • 740ml thickened cream, at room temperature
  • 800g good-quality dark chocolate, broken into squares
  • 220g brown sugar
  1. Quarter fill a medium saucepan with water and place a large heatproof bowl over the top. The bowl should fit snugly in the pan with its base reaching halfway into the pan. If the base of the bowl touches the water, the chocolate may overheat and become grainy. If the bowl does touch the water, remove the bowl and tip a little of the water out. Remove the bowl and place the saucepan over high heat and bring the water to the boil. Reduce heat to low so the water is barely simmering.
  2. Place the cream, chocolate and sugar in the heatproof bowl. It is important to use good-quality dark chocolate as this will affect the flavour of the sauce (you can also use good-quality cooking chocolate). Place the bowl over the pan of simmering water, and heat, stirring often with a metal or wooden spoon, for 3-4 minutes or until chocolate almost melts. If you are using a wooden spoon, make sure it’s clean. It is a good idea to keep separate wooden spoons for sweet and savoury cooking, as the wood can absorb the flavours of the food it comes in contact with.
  3. Remove the bowl from the heat and continue to stir until all the chocolate melts. (See microwave tip.) There will be enough residual heat in the bowl for the chocolate to finish melting. This also ensures the chocolate doesn’t overheat.
  4. Serve the chocolate sauce warm or transfer to a clean, dry airtight jar or container. Store in the fridge for 3-4 weeks. Serve at room temperature or warm (see reheating instructions). Use a clean metal spoon each time you remove the chocolate sauce from the container to prevent mould forming.
  5. Microwave reheating: Place the sauce in a microwave-safe container and heat a single portion on Medium/500watts/50% for 20-40 seconds or until warmed through. If reheating the whole quantity, cook on Medium/500watts/50% for 1-2 minutes or until warmed through.
  6. I’ll be back in a couple of days with my next 2 sauces. And soon I’ll be sharing some present ideas

Friday Food–Saturday edition

(Saturday edition only cause I finished cooking about 15 minutes ago)
Another Friday, another Friday Food.
This weekend we are having a friend stay so I thought some baking was in order so we’ve got something to snack on. Two days of Battletech so I’ll be feeding 4, possibly 5 males (plus me & Miss K). Lots of snacks, a roast lamb tonight, leftover lamb shepherd’s pie 2morrow night. Thank goodness I love cooking LOL

Choc Chip biscuits (recipe here)

Lemon slice

1 packet of Nice biscuits
1 cup coconut
115g butter, melted
1/2 tin condensed milk
1/2 teaspoon almond essence
2 cups icing sugar
2 tablespoons of butter, melted
1 lemon, rind & juice

Crush biscuits. Put into a bowl with coconut, butter, condensed milk and almond essence. Mix well. Press into a greased tin. Place in refrigerator until set.
Place icing sugar, butter, lemon rind & lemon juice in a small bowl. Mix well to combine.
Pour icing over set base. Allow icing to set.

Chocolate-Orange fudge slice (recipe here)

Easy as chocolate fudge (recipe here). I made a half batch to use up the condensed milk I had left over from the lemon slice.


What have you cooked this week?

Friday Food–the 2 week edition

(posting late as we’ve had no net since Thursday nite *sigh*)

I didn’t get to post this last Friday so you’re getting 2 weeks worth of Friday Food today.

So last week it was cupcakes & Anzac biscuits. Through the week I made the yummiest Shepherd’s Pie using left over lamb roast and today I made brownies.

Anzacs are from the Central Cookbook. A family favourite.

The brownies are simple to make & I do recommend making a double batch cause they go pretty quick too.

The Shepherd’s Pie came about after deciding I was sick of doing the same things with our left over lamb roasts so (after a suggestion from hubby) I googled shepherd’s pie and came across this recipe. And let me tell you it is YUM!

and now I have ANOTHER foodie blog in my reader

Friday Food–Banana cake & choc chip biscuits

Welcome to another Friday Food (yeah I know it’s Saturday). Didn’t do any baking today but I have two recipes to share with you I made earlier this week.

First up is Banana Cake. This is super easy and a great use of those super ripe, super brown (& I’ve found pretty cheap) bananas.

You’ll need:

125g softened butter
1/2 cup caster sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 large ripe bananas, mashed
11/2 cup self raising flour
1/2 teaspoon bicarb
pinch salt
1/4 cup milk

Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease cake tin..
Cream butter & sugar until light & fluffy, beat in eggs gradually. Stir in half sifted dry ingredients & banana. Mix to combine. Fold in remaining dry ingredients & milk. Spoon into cake tin.
Bake for about 40 minutes or until cooked. Cook cake for 5 minutes in tin before turning out.
(Have a food processor? Cream the butter & sugar first then add all the remaining ingredients. Makes it super quick.)

and the second is Choc chip cookies (or biscuits, whatever)
You’ll need:
90g butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1/2 cup chocolate chips
11/2 cup self raising flour
1/2 teaspoon bicarb

Cream butter & sugar. Mix vanilla & egg. Beat egg into butter mixture. Stir in remaining ingredients.
Place heaped teaspoonful onto greased oven trays. Bake at 180°C for 10 minutes.

Friday food – Cinnamon Scrolls

I has been baking. No secret I love to cook. Wanted to work in hospitality when I was younger. Did a short stint as a kitchen hand. Hated it. Ended up in IT.

Anywho. Have been dying to make cinnamon scrolls for ages but never seem to get around to making them. Until today. Found this recipe and decided to give it a go.

Nomnomnom omg they r yum.
Was also going to make some choc chip cookies but ran out of butter so they will have to wait til 2morrow.

So what have you been cooking lately?

(I’m hoping this will become a regular post as I want to bake more snacks for the weekends)