Tuesday, September 17, 2013


Spring is well underway here; last week we had some very warm days but because it is western Victoria, today it is 10 degrees and raining in a brief return to winter.  I have been frantically busy in the garden trying to keep the weeding, mulching and mowing under control but today it was really time for some inside jobs, which get somewhat neglected at this time of year.  I knocked up a couple of quiches for the weekend:
as well as some flatbread from Smitten Kitchen and a light eggplant dip to go with it.  

Sometimes baba ganoush can be a bit sharp from the raw garlic but this version is smooth and really delicious.  We had it alongside some lamb a few nights ago too.


2 eggplants
olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 tblsp tahini
1 teasp cumin
juice of a lemon
1 tblsp honey
salt and pepper
herbs of choice to scatter over the top (parsley, mint)

Preheat the oven to 190c.
Halve the eggplants, cut diamond slits into the flesh and drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper.  
You can either put them on a baking tray and bake in the oven for about 30 minutes or put face down onto the barbeque and cook with the lid down for 30 minutes, which will give you a more charred flavour (just make sure they are not burning).  I turned them over and put them on the floor of the roasting oven of the Aga and they browned nicely...
Sorry this is blurry, I just wanted to show you the lovely colour
Meanwhile wrap the garlic in a bit of foil, drizzle with olive oil and bake in the oven for about 30 minutes or until soft.

Scrape out the flesh of the eggplants and put them in a food processor (or you can us the bamix or even just mash them with a potato masher or fork) with the squeezed out garlic.
Add the tahini, cumin, lemon juice,  honey and salt and pepper and whizz the mix.  At this point you can add more tahini, cumin, lemon juice and seasoning to taste.

Here is a pic of the flatbread, which would go well with any dip...
I made some nettle soup last week.  It is incredibly green:
I picked some cumquats the other day..
and made some marmalade:
There has been so much going on lately that I think I will save up for the next instalment.  It is hard to be inside at the computer when there is so much to do in the garden at this time of year, so fingers crossed for another rainy day.