May 18, 2014

The “P” meal

Filed under: Food — pearsey @ 8:14 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

I had some visitors over the weekend, so I thought I’d share with you some of the recipes we were tucking into. Seemed last night’s meal was based around the letter “P”, with potato, pumpkin, pork and pears on the menu. Pork – I just roasted it, nothing special there. But the below recipes are worth replicating, mainly because I’ll need them again and they come from borrowed books!

Pear and Ginger Custard Dessert
From The Australian Women’s Weekly Fruit & Vegetable Cookbook.

  • 185gm butter
  • 2/3 cup castor sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup packaged ground almonds
  • 1 1/4 cups self-raising flour
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 large pears, thickly sliced (I used 4)
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds
  • Ginger Custard
  • 2 tablespoons custard powder
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 1/3 cups milk
  • 30gm butter

Cream butter and sugar in small bowl with electric mixer until light and fluffy.
Beat in eggs, one at a time, until combined. Transfer mixture to large bowl, stir in ground almonds, half the sifted flour and half the milk. Then stir in remaining flour and milk.
Ginger custard: combine custard powder, sugar and ginger in saucepan, gradually stir in milk. Stir constantly over heat until mixture boils and thickens. Stir in butter.
Spread custard into greased oven proof dish (2 litres capacity) and top with pears in single layer. Spread pears with cake mixture, sprinkle with slivered almonds. Bake in moderate oven for about 1 1/4 hours.

I doubled the pears, which was no problem at all except my dish ended up being a little too small! This was really nice, although the top was a little dark as I had the oven a bit high to start with (my fault, I was trying to cook some other things fast!)

Pear and ginger custard dessert

Pear and ginger custard dessert – we just dived in!

Pumpkin with Bacon
This recipe comes from the Readers Digest Quick, Thrifty Cooking book.

  • 2 rashers bacon, cut into 2cm strips (I used bacon pieces, about 200-300gm)
  • 500gm pumpkin, peeled and chopped
  • 1 medium sized onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 30gm butter or margarine, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar (I didn’t include this)
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup soft fresh breadcrumbs (2 slices of bread)
  1. Cook the bacon in a medium-size, heavy frying pan over moderately high heat until crisp – about 5 minutes. Transfer the bacon to paper toweling and put aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180 deg C. Add the pumpkin and onion to the dripping in the pan and cook, uncovered for 2 minutes (I didn’t bother with the pumpkin). Add the water, cover and cook until the vegetables are tender – about 15 minutes.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and mash the vegetables with a potato masher. Ad the butter, salt, sugar, egg and breadcrumbs and mix well. Pour into a buttered 1.5litre casserole dish. Crumble the reserved bacon, sprinkle it over the pumpkin mixture and bake uncovered for 20 minutes.

I used pre packaged bread crumbs, but 1 cup was far too much for my batch (and I was making 1.5 times the amount). I had to put in about a cup of milk and it still could have had more. But it tasted excellent and I’ll definitely make it again.

Pumpkin and Bacon

Pumpkin and Bacon

Mashed PotatoesBaked Mashed Potatoes. These were quite creamy mashed potatoes as you would expect, I substituted cream with some lemon juice for the sour cream and I forgot to put the butter/cracker crumbs on the top, but never mind. I have enough left over to evaluate it again all week!

Mashed Potato

Mashed Potato

The Apple Pie

I was visiting last week and I had a request to bring an apple pie. Seeing as I like a challenge and I had no other urgent things to do that day, I thought I’d go from scratch and see what I could come up with. I also thought I’d make two, one for mothers day the next day. So I made the pastry for the bottom of the pie, peeled and cooked the apples, but I didn’t have enough pastry for the top, so rather than make another batch, I used some puff pastry with a lattice finish. The fact I had heaps of trouble trying to get the pastry to roll out only persuaded me a little 🙂

Last piece!

Last piece!

Here’s the recipe I used for the pastry. It tasted pretty good, I just had heaps of trouble getting it to work!

I sprinkled some cinnamon and walnuts over the top, before weaving the puff pastry into a lattice top (dodgy one!).

Ready for the top

Ready for the top

Ready for the oven

Ready for the oven

End result – excellent!

Just out of the oven

Just out of the oven

Next day I made some custard, apple and white chocolate muffins. I’ve never been much of a muffin lover – eating or cooking them, so it probably comes as no surprise that these weren’t a roaring success. They tasted really good, but were more like a scone than a muffin, confirmed by those who had some. Good moist tasting scones, but if I was ever to do them again, I’d have to go back to the drawing board to figure out what I did wrong, because scones wasn’t the aim! I got heaps out of the mixture though, nearly 2 dozen, but then I don’t like giant sized muffins!

So there you go, some of my cooking from the last couple of weeks.


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