18 July 2010

Resourceful cooking achievements

I had a lovely day in today. It was cold so I enjoyed hanging around in my jamas listening to Aussie music (Angus and Julia Stone, the Paul Kelly/Triple J tribute concert and The Basement Birds) and having a tidy up.

I wrote. I revisited my uni stuff. Thesis starts TOMORROW!

I sorted some brooches.

I love brooches. I put them in a glass bowl, and my fun (read cheap) necklaces in a tea cup from T2. You can just see a yellow duck necklace in the tea cup. I can't wait to wear this necklace! It's mother duck and her ducklings! From the kids section of Diva. I might wear it tomorrow. If I do, I will try to have my outfit photographed.

And I sorted my outfit for tomorrow night. It's a secret.

After some changed plans with some friends, I had a solo quick breakfast at Fraus. I love this cafe.

Today I ate crepes with banana, bacon and maple syrup, with a side of marscapone. I loved the salty and sweetness. So it was very rich. But so delicious. Not exactly a Weigh Watchers meal, but I am one of those people who eat to live AND live to eat. In case you hadn't noticed!
I had my regular mug of hot chocolate.
I also read the Sunday papers, which is a pleasure of mine on a Sunday. One of the supplements had a feature on the stunts on Rush. It was the episode that I saw Callan Mulvey filming. You can read it at The Age.

I did some shopping before I returned home - bought a heap of organic vegies on special so I could make a vegie soup inspired by KittyCate. She has inspired me a lot lately!

The soup had so many vegies in it, and was a great way to use up the vegies in the fridge as well as the cheapies from the grocer.

Mum's greens lasted for ages. There is kale, some yellow leafy vegies, spinach and a bunch of bok choy. I also enjoyed the noon sun through my kitchen window.
All these vegies were in my fridge.
So much pumpkin for $1! And this huge parsnip was 50 cents!
It's not often I use premium chicken stock. It's around $7.00 but I guess it's a nice extravagance when my vegies were quite cheap and already in my fridge.
I used beans. And seasoned it with peppercorns, cumin, cardamom, chilli and celery salt.
All was placed in the slow cooker for about six hours.
The soup was so delicious. The sweet potato and pumpkin gave it a honey-flavour.
Last night I didn't know what to have for dinner so I hunted in the freezer and found some of Mum's home made pork sausages. I made bangers and mash.
On the plate is bok choy, smashed potato, snow peas and home made sausage.

Why am I jumping around with my dates?, you ask. Well, I had one really long sausage left over. It was too much to eat last night.
So in the spirit of resourcefulness, and after a suggestion from Mum, I made sausage risotto for dinner today. I've never made 'meaty' risotto before. I have made it with chicken and seafood many times, but never with meat, and definitely not sausage.

These are my main ingredients. Lemon, rice, the leftover pumpkin, spring onions, garlic, oyster mushrooms, and the thing in the foil is the cooked sausage.

Aren't oyster mushrooms so pretty? They are like clouds. They were so cheap too!
I cut the sausage up. I actually cut these further into quarters.
I started the risotto by re-cooking the sausage with the spring onions and garlic.
My lemon zester is my favourite kitchen gadget. I zested the lemon and added it to the sausage mix, along with some saffron.
I added the microwaved pumpkin and its juices.
And a beer jug of stock. It's pretty green hey?! Frightening - I believe Vegeta has MSG. I received this beer jug for my 21st birthday and have never used it for beer. I don't believe I've ever drank this much beer in my life. It's strictly a stock and green smoothie jug.
I added the rice, making sure it was coated by the vegies and sausage to get the flavour. I added the juice of the lemon.
I pour all the stock in the saucepan at once. I know you are meant to slowly add it to the rice. But I just add it all and let it sit there on low heat and let the rice absorb it, stirring once or twice. I've never had an accident burning the rice yet. Again, this probably rules me out of being on Masterchef.
Twenty minutes later and the stock is absorbed. I put some asparagus and the oyster mushrooms in at this stage. I added a small piece of feta cheese that I had left over, some colby cheese and a bit of butter. Counteracting the great low fat vegetable soup, I know!
And here it is. It was so very yummy. Very creamy, very tangy. Packed with vegies and that home made sausage. And very resourceful. It may well be the best risotto I've made!
I have heaps of risotto and soup left over for lunches during the week. It's a busy week for me this week so it helps to have some meals prepared.

I am so excited about tomorrow night! I have been brushing up on the last episode of season two of Rush so I can get straight into the first episodes of season three. Plus there is the opportunity of meeting the cast! I am going with lots of friends and have asked them to bring cameras so we can share photos. Look out for pictures and a detailed recap of the event!


  1. I had a late lunch at Fraus today - sorry to have missed seeing you there. Sure enjoyed my cup of hot chocolate too!

  2. My goal was to start my thesis today as well! Unfortunately that didn't happen, and instead I've been browsing blogs such as yours all day. Which, I must say, is far more enjoyable :D

    Hope you fared better than I did!


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