I found the urge to cook on Sunday and Monday. I wanted tasty, healthy food from fresh produce. A visit to my local grocer inspired me to cook a three course meatless Monday meal.
I picked up some discounted fruit and vegies. Although produce is expensive due to the natural disasters, if you hunt around, you can get some great food. And you can create some amazing dishes. I estimate all dishes I cooked were $8 – $10 and contained 3 serves – some of the ingredients I didn’t even buy!
Mushroom soup. If only smellovision existed. This soup smells like the most comforting, nourishing, yummiest soup I’ve ever made. I cooked this on Sunday and reheated on Monday.
I picked up two punnets of discounted mushrooms – shitake and oyster, and had some black funghi in the freezer. Black funghi is spongy and very strong tasting. I used some of it in a stirfry a few weeks back and froze the rest.
I first cooked a leek, and zucchini, both finely diced, and some chopped garlic in a teaspoon of butter and olive oil.
I let these sweat for about 20 minutes. Then I added these beautiful mushrooms
I started work early yesterday and so arrived home at work earlier than usual so I had time to cook something elaborate. Stuffed capsicum. I had three to use up. I made a stuffing from a duck egg (from parents’ ducks), an apricot, a few dried mushrooms, half a lemon, grated carrot and zucchini and onion and garlic. I also used the super food quinoa.
Grated vegies in the pan…
I soaked the mushrooms and added the water to the mushroom soup. Nothing should be wasted.
And chopped them roughly and put them in the pan with chopped apricot…
This is quinoa.
I never know what it looks like when it’s cooked because I am lazy and just cover it with water and put it in the microwave for 10 minutes. I added this to the vegies on the stove and let sit off the heat. I seasoned the stuffing with a spoon of Mum’s home made kasundi (cost me nothing) and salt and pepper. When the stuffing cooled, I mixed in a beaten duck egg.
I had a disaster in the kitchen. Initially I added some psyllium husks to the quinoa and microwaved it. It ended up overflowing and when I retrieved it, there was this mess that looked like a giant eggwhite or a big bit of mucous. It was disgusting. And took a while to clean. No photos. Moving on.
I then cut the capsicums open, removed the insides, added whatever capsicum flesh I could to the stuffing, and then put a piece of cheese in each capsicum.
I filled the capsicum with stuffing and baked them.
Dessert was rhubarb, apricot and plum crumble. I prepared the fruit on Sunday and the crumble last night.
I normally make stewed rhubarb, apple or pear and berries. Berries are expensive, and I picked up some really cheap stewing apricots (maybe 50 cents for a huge bag), so I improvised. I also added a passionfruit and two plums.
I wanted my fruit to taste interesting. So I gave it an Asian flavour, using vanilla, brown sugar, cardamom, ginger (is ginger usually $40 per kilo???) and a finger lime.
I ground these ingredients up in my mortar and pestle. Finger limes are amazing. Really tangy, and they look like citrus caviar. I added these to the pot of fruit with a quarter of a cup of water, and cooked it on low heat until soft.
Look at this amazing coral colour! It’s a favourite colour of mine. Like a sunset!
Here is the baked crumble – in the oven for around 40 minutes.
The end product served with cream – so yummy! Tangy and quite a unique, fresh taste.