Quarantine baking: spiced banana bread / muffins

When life hands you mushy overripe spotty bananas – put them to good use!

This recipe has no added sugar due to the overripe bananas being naturally very sweet, but if you’d prefer something sweeter, add 1/2 cup of brown sugar as well. 

Ingredients 

  • 3 very overripe mushy bananas (the more spotty the better)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 + 1/2 cups almond milk
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 + 1/2 cups self raising flour
  • 1/4 cup vanilla protein powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp ginger

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180*C
  2. Mix the wet ingredients
  3. Add the dry ingredients
  4. Pour into loaf tin or muffin cases and bake until a skewer comes out clean (will take ~ 25 minutes for the muffins but about 45 minutes for the loaf; start checking with a skewer as soon as the top is browned).

Easy Pumpkin Salmon Gnocchi

This is “cooking” for when you don’t have time to cook (i.e. me around exam time!).

Ingredients (serves 2-3)

  • Packet of store bought pumpkin gnocchi
  • 150g hot smoked salmon, flaked
  • Squeeze of lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp garlic infused olive oil
  • 150g baby spinach
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley and basil, finely chopped

Method

  1. Cook the gnocchi as per the packet directions in a pot of boiling water. Once cooked, drain and return to the pot but off the heat.
  2. While still warm, stir in the spinach, herbs, oil, salmon and lemon juice. Serve immediately.

Pie Maker Savoury Muffins

After a recent baking spree for night shift, I can now truly appreciate why people are going nuts over these pie makers!

You’d be surprised at what people can create in such a short space of time with one of these (a real bargain considering they’re only $29 from Kmart). For some epic recipe ideas, definitely look up the Australian Kmart pie maker recipe group on Facebook!

As part of my experimentation, I made an old recipe of mine, a cross between a muffin and a frittata – a fruffin if you will (because mufftata sounds a bit risky).

I made two different flavours of these by changing the spice, otherwise the base recipe is the same!


 

Ingredients (makes 12)

Method

  1. Turn on the pie maker.
  2. Beat the eggs, then add the milk, flour, yogurt and spice mix and stir well to combine.
  3. Place spinach leaves at the base of the pie mould, then pour 1/8th cup of filling mixture on top. Place a small piece of cheese, then add another dollop of filling mixture to cover.
  4. Cook in the pie maker until golden brown (about 3-5 minutes). These will cook more evenly the more full the mould is.
  5. Store in an airtight container in the fridge if they don’t all get eaten!

Lemon quince Pterodactyl wings

Sorry for the radio silence! Between studying for fellowship and moving, I’ve barely had time to function this year.

Now, I know this is not my normal kind of recipe, but if these make dinner easy and delicious for anyone else who’s busy like me then I’ll be happy!

These enormous turkey wings were cooked in my brand new oven, and what can I say, I’m impressed!

Ingredients

    Turkey wings (about 800g which was 5)
    • 2 tablespoons lemon infused olive oil (I used

Cobram Estate

    )
    2 tablespoons quince paste

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 170*C.
  2. In a bowl, mix the lemon olive oil and quince paste together. Spread the mixture on top of the turkey wings.
  3. Wrap the turkey wings all together in a parcel of baking paper (so that the quince doesn’t burn) and bake until cooked through (about an hour). Allow to rest before serving with your favourite greens!

One Tray Mediterranean Chicken Bake

This is one for those ‘cooking when you can’t be bothered cooking’ kind of days!

Ingredients 

  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 2 medium zucchinis
  • 500g mushrooms
  • 2 red capsicums
  • I head of broccoli
  • Herbs of your choosing – I used my favourite garlic lovers mix from Gewurtzhaus but a clove of garlic and a generous sprinkle of mixed herbs or parsely + oregano will work just fine!

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180*C. Line a baking dish with paper or grease with olive oil.
  2. Chop the zucchinis, broccoli and capsicum into roughly even sized chunks.
  3. Place the vegetables on the bottom of the dish, then place the chicken on top, covered with a little olive oil and the herbs of your choosing.
  4. Cover with alfoil and bake until cooked through (about 30 minutes). Remove from oven when chicken is just cooked (as the veggies will be cooked underneath). Serve hot or use as meal prep to fill the freezer!

Pumpkin Poulet Patties

These are based on my turkey rissoles, and make for some great chicken burgers (although they’re just as tasty on their own too!).

Ingredients (makes 8 large patties) 

  • 500g chicken mince
  • 1 small piece sourdough
  • 1/4 cup quinoa flakes
  • 100g pumpkin
  • 1 egg
  • herbs: 2 sprigs dill, 4 sprigs parsley, 6 tarragon leaves

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200*C and line a baking tray with baking paper.
  2. Chop the pumpkin into small pieces and roast until soft (~ 20 minutes). Leave the oven on.
  3. Place the bread in a food processor and process into crumbs. Add the mince, egg, herbs and pumpkin until combined, then stir in the quinoa flakes.
  4. Heat a large fry pan over medium heat with a small amount of olive oil. Roll 2-3 tbsp of mixture into balls and drop onto the pan, squishing with the back of a spatula. Lightly brown both sides of the patties, then remove from the pan, place on the oven tray and return to the oven until cooked through (~ 15-20 minutes). Serve hot or cold.

Served above with a beetroot and cauliflower dip (essentially my lemon beetroot hummus but with roasted 1/2 head small cauliflower instead of chickepeas).

 

One Tray Chicken, Pumpkin and Mushroom Bake

This was a crazy Saturday afternoon experiment. While it didn’t turn out Insta-pic perfect, it did make for some fantastic meal prep with minimal washing up.

Ingredients (serves 4) 

  • 200g Kent pumpkin
  • 2 large sweet potatoes
  • 500g mushrooms
  • 1 bunch asparagus
  • 150g baby spinach leaves
  • 4 small chicken breasts
  • 1/4 cup reduced salt chicken stock
  • 1.4 cup fresh chopped parsley
  • 4 fresh basil leaves
  • 1 microwave packet of brown, red and wild rice

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200*C. Lightly spray a baking dish with oil.
  2. Wash and chop the pumpkin and potatoes into small pieces and add to the dish. Bake until starting to soften (15-20 minutes).
  3. Add the mushrooms, asparagus and chicken breasts to the dish and bake until the chicken is almost cooked through (20 minutes). Add the spinach leaves and herbs and bake for a further 5 minutes until the leaves are wilted.
  4. Just prior to serving, cook the rice as per the packet directions and add to the dish.

Granola-Crusted Salmon

I know, it sounds ridiculous, but trust me, it works! The trick is to use a granola that’s nut-based and doesn’t contain added refined sugars.

Ingredients (serves 2) 

  • 2 salmon fillets, skin off
  • 1 small sweet potato
  • 100g baby spinach
  • 1 bunch asparagus (I prefer raw, but it can also be blanched in boiling water for 1 minute just prior to serving)

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200*C. Chop the sweet potato into rough chunks and place on a lined baking tray. Bake until soft (20 minutes).
  2. On another lined baking tray, place the salmon and bake for 10 minutes. Crust the granola in a small bowl, and while still hot, place the salmon skin side down into the granola and press firmly to stick. Return to the oven for another 5-10 minutes, and allow to rest before serving.
  3. Serve the salmon with potato, spinach and asparagus.

Meal Prep for Professionals # 2

As a busy shift worker, I am a fan of making and freezing meals in bulk, particularly when I know I have a hectic week or two of work ahead. Following on from my original Meal Prep for Professionals post, here is another collection of make-ahead ideas!


Healthy Fish and Chips – Salmon with Sweet Potato and Pretty Tahini Slaw 

Ingredients (makes 4 servings) 

  • 1 large sweet potato
  • 300g dry coleslaw salad mix
  • 1 tbsp tahini
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 200g spinach
  • 4 x salmon fillets, skin off

Method 

  1. Preheat the oven to 180*C. Roughly chop the sweet potato into wedges, spray with olive oil and bake until just soft (15 minutes). Add the salmon onto the same tray and return to the oven until the salmon is baked through (12 minutes).
  2. Place the coleslaw mix, tahini, salt and mustard in the food processor and blend until finely chopped and mixed through.
  3. Serve the slaw with the spinach, salmon and sweet potato.

Broccoli, beetroot and balsamic salad 

Ingredients (serves 4) 

  • 1 large head broccoli
  • 200g fat-reduced feta cheese
  • 200g tin beetroot slices, drained and rinsed thoroughly (or alternatively, roast and slice 2 large beetroots yourself)
  • 200g can chickpeas, drained
  • 2 tbsp flaked almonds
  • 200g spinach
  • balsamic vinegar (I used Pukka Estate fig balsamic for this recipe)

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200*C. Chop the broccoli into florets and bake until soft and slightly charred around the edges.
  2. To assemble the salad, place the spinach on the bottom, followed by the beetroot, broccoli, chickpeas and feta. Drizzle with balsamic and add the almonds just prior to serving to ensure they stay crunchy!

Chicken with Teriyaki Quinoa and Greens 

Ingredients (serves 4) 

  • 1 bunch pak choi
  • 1 bunch bok choi
  • 4 large kale leaves
  • 1 glove garlic, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 cup tricolour quinoa
  • 2 tbsp teriyaki sauce
  • 4 chicken breasts (skin off)
  • Nori seaweed to serve

Method 

  1. Preheat the oven to 180*C. Place the chicken breasts on a tray, season with salt / pepper to your liking, and roast until cooked through (~ 15 minutes). Set aside.
  2. Roughly chop the vegetables and sautee in a fry pan over medium heat with a small amount of olive oil and garlic until just wilted. Set aside.
  3. Place the quinoa and 1 cup of water in a microwave proof dish and cook for 12-15 minutes until the quinoa is soft.
  4. To serve, place the vegetables on the bottom, top with the quinoa, drizzle with teriyaki sauce, then add the chicken (sliced) and top with crushed nori seaweed or bonito flakes.

Spiced Potato and Pumpkin Salad 

Ingredients (serves 4) 

  • 1 large potato, skin on
  • 1/4 large pumpkin
  • 300g can corn kernels, drained
  • 1 bunch kale, roughly torn apart with stems removed
  • 200g feta or goat cheese
  • Moroccan style seasoning (I used Sahara by Mingle Seasoning)
  • Dukkha to serve (choose something earthy and ideally sesame / tomato based here)

Method 

  1. Preheat the oven to 200*C. Slice the potato and pumpkin into small chunks, coat in a spray of olive oil and seasoning, and bake until soft and golden (~ 20 minutes).
  2. To assemble the salad, place the kale on the bottom, then layer the corn, pumpkin and potato on top. Add the cheese and sprinkle with the dukkha.