Baked Potato Soup


I got this recipe out of the Rachel Ray cookbook my cousin, Jill, got us for Christmas !
You can find the original recipe here.
Here's how I did mine ...

10 slices bacon, chopped
2 big leeks, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
8 sprigs fresh thyme, removed from stems
1 tablespoon paprika, plus additional for garnish
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 kgs potatoes, peeled and chopped
6 cups chicken stock

Shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano
Spring Onions, for garnish

Cook bacon until golden brown. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate and reserve.

Cook leeks and garlic in the bacon fat until tender, about 4-5 minutes. Add in the thyme, paprika, some salt and freshly ground black pepper. Add potatoes and stock to the pot and boil til the potatoes are cooked through, about 8-10 minutes. When the potatoes are tender, puree the soup in a food processor. I had to do this in about 5 batches as this makes a LOT of soup !

Serve the soup in a bowl or mug topped with some of the two cheeses, reserved bacon, and a sprinkling of spring onions.

We used sour cream tonight but we won't again.

** Tomorrow when I have the leftovers for lunch, I'm going to put chopped avocado on top !!

PS ... I served this soup with Roasted Cauliflower and Brocolli !


Menu Plan Monday - Bonnie - 27 April 2009

Menu Plan Monday is hosted by I'm an Organizing Junkie.

I sure have missed having a menu. We moved house last week and it has been a bit topsy turvey around here !! But ... I'm back on track. Planned my menu last night, went shopping today ! Cooked something delicious this evening. The recipe will be posted soon !! Except for Wednesday, we're having all new recipes ! So ... I'll share the photos from tonights dinner, but that will be it for photos til I actually make these meals !! They all sound so good to me !!

Monday ... Chargrilled Salmon with Asparagus in a Lime Vinaigrette and Greek Croustade.



Tuesday ... Potato soup with the works , grilled turkish bread, roasted cauliflower and broccoli

Wednesday ... Sushi

Thursday ... Gone all day casserole, roaster cauliflower and broccoli

Friday ... Chicken in garlic sauce, patatas alioli

Saturday ... leftovers

Sunday ... Gregg and Chery's wedding

Fish with a groovy lime salsa

The other day I bought Notebook, one of my favorite magazines. It had a free bag of goodies and included in it was the December 2008/January 2009 issue of delicious. (another fave) I've made a couple of the recipes out of it that I want to share. The first is this delicious fish recipe ... I, of course, modified it, so here is that modified version ...


You will need :
Olive oil
Firm White Fish Fillets (two big ones served the four of us nicely)
1 lime
coconut (see note below)
1 avocado
fresh ginger, grated (to taste)
1 cup fresh coriander (cilantro)
splash fish sauce
1 tsp sugar

I like to try the recipe as close to the way it is the first time I try it. This recipe called for fresh coconut and since I live in a tropical paradise and can buy coconut fresh, I went for it. Don't think I'll do it again. I googled how to open a coconut, thought it look pretty easy, gave it a go but couldn't do it. Luckily Rory's got skillz and he got the coconut open ! The recipe said to grate 80g !! I never weighed it, I just grated til I could grate no more ! And I still had almost a whole coconut left ! ha ha. So yeah ... next time, I'm going to try using desicated coconut ! But ... you do what you like !!!

How you make it:

Segment and chop the lime. Try to catch the juice, or have another lime handy to use a bit of the juice (depending on how limey you want this). Mix with chopped avocado, corander leaves, ginger, fish sauce and sugar. Set aside. (this is quite a tart salsa ... mmmmmm !)

Heat a bit of olive oil in a large non-stick fry pan ( I used a grill pan ) over high heat. Season fish with salt and pepper. Cook til fish is cooked through. Should only take a few minutes each side.

Serve fish on steamed rice and with salsa on top ....

I also roasted cauliflower and asparagus with a whole heap of garlic and olive oil. Mmmmmm !


You may wonder if our kids eat all these meals I cook ?
They sure do.
For some things ( like the lime salsa ) that I think they won't be excited about,
I only give them a small helping.
I wrote about how we taught our kids to eat, if you're interested.


PS. we had leftovers of the salsa. i ate it the next night on mexican chicken. mmmmmm !!

Menu Plan Monday - Bonnie - 13 April 2009

Menu Plan Monday is hosted by I'm an Organizing Junkie.

The plan for this week is that there is no plan !!

We are moving house on Thursday and will probably eat out or eat eggs on toast until then !!
See you back here next week when I'll be cooking on my GAS STOVE in our new place !

Chinese Chicken Curry in the Crock Pot


This is a great recipe that I got from Sandra's Full Bellies, Happy Kids blog ...
You should go check it out ... she's got some great recipes !!

I didn't actually make this one. Rory did. So, yeah, I found it exceptionally easy !! ha ha Here's how he did it ...

2 Onions, chopped
2 Garlic Cloves, chopped
1 tablespoons Curry Powder
2 teaspoons Light Brown Sugar
200ml Chicken Stock
2 tablespoons Soy Sauce
4 Skinless Chicken Breasts, cut into chunks
3 tablespoons Cornflour

Fry up your onions and garlic. After a couple minutes, add curry powder. Fry for a bit longer., 30 seconds or so. Add sugar, stock, soy sauce and bring to the boil.

Toss the chicken pieces in the cornflour and lay in bottom of slow cooker, top with sauce and cook on low for 4-6 hours.

We served this on rice.

Steamed Fish on Rice

Adapted from Authentic Tastes of Southeast Asia by Celine Carnegie


Here's how you make it :

Fish ... I used Barramundi ... 4 pieces topped with one lime thinly sliced

Steam over high heat for about 15 minutes or til cooked through.

While that's steaming :

Mix the following ...
2 cloves minced garlic
chopped chillies (if you want)
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 teaspoon sugar

When fish is done :

Remover from steamer.
Lay on bed of cooked rice.
Top with sauce, cilantro leaves (coriander) and thinly slices spring onion.

I served with :


Next time :

I'll also do a steamed green veggie

Yummy Salad with a Radish Dressing


I got this recipe out of A Year In A Vegetarian Kitchen by Jack Bishop.
It is so delicious ! I've made it a number of times ....

I've adapted it a bit to suit our tastes.
Here's my adapted version ... if you want the original you'll have to buy the book !

For the dressing
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon minced fresh oregano leaves
1 med garlic clove, minced
salt and pepper
6 tbls good olive oil
a bunch of small*radishes, thinly sliced ( about 1.5 cups) - I made this one time but couldn't find radishes. It was just as good without them

Whisk everything but the oil and radishes in the bowl you intend to make the salad in. Add the oil and whisk til smooth. Add the radishes. Toss to coat. Set aside til you make the rest.

*radishes get spicier the bigger they get

For the bread
8 small slices country bread, cut 1 inch thick
good olive oil
salt (I used Himalayan rock salt)

Pre-heat your sandwich press, or grill. Brush the bread with the oil and sprinkle with salt. Grill ( or do in the press like I did !! ), turning once.

For the salad
Tender lettuces ... I used butter lettuce ... torn into bite sized pieces. It said 12 cups. I don't think I used that much.
2 cups cherry tomatoes
kalamata olives ... how ever many you fancy
crumbled feta cheese ... again ... to your liking

Uh ... make a salad with those ingredients in the bowl with the salad dressing. Toss to coat.

To serve
Mound the salad high on the toast.
Serve immediately.

Enjoy !!!


Something New ...

Ok ... I'm going to progressively set up a page like this for each of our major foods.

Check it out !

Go to the side bar and click on the quinoa photo ...

Go on !

Do it !

Just for fun ...

Lemony Chicken and Israeli Couscous Salad Deliciousness

We had this tonight and I couldn't even wait til tomorrow to share it with you.

DE.LIC.IOUS with a capital D !!!
So freaking good !!
Even the kids were raving about this one !


I loosely followed a recipe from this book for this recipe ...

4 chicken breast fillets (this made enough for dinner and lunch !)
olive oil
salt and pepper
2 lemons, halved
2 cups Israeli couscous
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons shredded lemon rind
2 tablespoons salted capers
dried parsley
1/2 cup slivered almonds

Brush the chicken with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook in a hot, preheated grill pan (or on BBQ) til cooked through. Set aside. Place the lemons in the pan, (or on BBQ) cut side down and cook for 1 minute ... I cooked a bit longer.

Make the couscous according the package directions.

Heat butter in fry pan over medium/high heat. Add lemon rind, capers, parlsey and almonds and cook til almonds are slightly toasted. Add cooked couscous and toss to combine.

To serve, top couscous with chicken and grilled lemons. We squeezed the lemon juice from the lemons onto both the chicken and the couscous.

Mmmmmm ... I'm lickin' my chops just thinkin' about it !!