Texan Sausage Hamburgers

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Friday again and the fast food challenge continues. Tonight we are doing hamburgers.

I discovered these breakfast sausages when we lived in Texas, they make a great change to our usual beef burgers and certainly feel like a lighter option.

They are very adaptable, I happily swap them between burger buns and corn tortillas for the gluten free option. They also work well as a stuffing in sausage rolls and as part of a breakfast taco.

The sausage meat can be frozen uncooked.

Traditionally bacon is not included but you need quite fatty minced pork, around 20%, so, when the minced pork has been too lean in the past I have added minced bacon, I think it adds another element to the sausage meat.

Ingredients

1kg minced pork

500g minced bacon

1 tablespoon dried oregano

1 tablespoon dried sage

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper, ground

Method

In a large bowl combine all the ingredients.

Shape into patties.

Heat a non stick frying pan over a medium heat.

These do not require oil in the pan.

Cook the patties for 4mins then flip and repeat on the other side.

Ensure that up the meat is fully cooked before serving.

 

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Canadian Log Pie

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I was given this recipe when I left home, simple and satisfying during the colder weather and gluten free too!

If you have a mandolin this is the perfect excuse to use it, just watch your fingers and use the guard if you have one.

I can’t pretend it’s healthy but maybe serve it with lots of greens to counteract the bacon and cheese.

Consider only seasoning with pepper depending on how salty your bacon is.

Serves 5.

Ingredients

6 medium potatoes, peeled and finely sliced

1 large onion, peeled and finely sliced

500g bacon rashers, chopped up

250g Cheddar cheese, sliced or grated

salt and pepper

Method

Preheat the oven to 180degrees Centigrade, lightly grease a deep oven proof dish.

Finely slice the potatoes and set aside.

Finely slice the onions, set aside.

Chop the bacon and set aside.

Place a quarter of the bacon into the prepared dish.

Top with onions followed by potatoes.

Sprinkle or place a quarter of the  grated or sliced cheese over the top, season with pepper.

Repeat a further three times with the final layer being cheese.

Cover and bake for 1 1/2-2hours until the potatoes are cooked.

Gluten Free Lemon Cookies

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Lemon season has begun here in Western Australia.

Our tree is laden and lemons are now featuring heavily on the menu!

These biscuits are quite “short” and the buckwheat/brown rice flour gives them a more earthy flavour which I like.

Makes 22-24.

Ingredients

220g butter

110g caster sugar

2 lemons, zest only

200g ground almonds

60g buckwheat flour

60g brown rice flour

Method

Preheat the oven to170degrees Centigrade.

Line two baking sheets.

Process the butter, sugar and lemon zest until creamed.

Add the ground almonds and flours and process until well combined.

Roll the dough out into walnut sized pieces, place on the baking sheets and press down slightly.

Bake for 20mins.

Once golden brown, remove form the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack.

Store in an airtight container.

 

Chocolate Chestnut Cake

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Gluten free, delicious and moist, what more can I say!

The boys love this cake, I don’t ice it but occasionally serve it with cream or top with whipped cream and raspberries, yummy!

Ingredients

220g dark chocolate, broken up

400g tin unsweetenedchestnut purée

8 eggs

400g sugar

Method

Preheat the oven to 180degrees Centigrade.

Grease and line a 25cm loose bottomed deep cake tin.

In a food processor, tip the chestnut purée and whizz till smooth.

With the motor still running, add the egg yolks, one at a time.

Now add 300g sugar and let the motor run for 1min.

Melt the chocolate, I use the microwave.

With the motor running, add the melted chocolate.

In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff.

Add the remaining 100g sugar to the egg whites and whisk well in until glossy.

Take a large spoon of the egg white mix and fold into the chocolate mixture.

Once loosened a little, add the chocolate mixture to the egg white bowl and fold in.

Spoon cake mix into the prepared tin.

Bake the cake for 50-60 mins until a skewer comes out clean.

Allow to cool in the tin.

Beef Bourguignon

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This is a great meal to pop in the oven in the afternoon and have a delicious dinner come evening.

I always use 2kgs of meat to allow for lots of leftovers, this stew makes an absolutely brilliant pie filling and the boys love a pie!

As I make this gluten free I don’t flour the meat before browning it, instead I thicken with cornflour towards the end. Double check your cornflour if you are cooking for a coeliac, one popular brand here in Australia is made from wheat!!!

Serves 8 and gives leftovers for 14-16 pies, see below.

Ingredients

100mls olive oil

2kgs diced beef, I use blade

300g pancetta, diced

500g mushrooms, halved or quartered

14 large shallots, peeled and broken into bulbs

4 cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced

150g tomato paste

750mls red wine

400mls beef stock

bouquet garni, thyme, parsley and rosemary tied with cooking twine

Salt and pepper

6 tablespoons cornflour

Method

Preheat the oven to 160 degrees Centigrade.

In a large oven proof  pan, I use a 6l casserole,  heat the oil over a high heat.

Once the oil is hot, brown the meat in batches, set aside in a large bowl.

Once the beef is all browned and removed add the pancetta and cook until crispy and releasing its fat.

Remove to the bowl with the beef.

Now throw the whole shallots in and brown over a high heat.

Remove and add to the beef bowl.

Lastly throw the mushrooms and garlic into the pan and brown a little.

Return the beef, pancetta and shallots to the pan.

Add the wine, stock, tomato paste and bouquet garni. I tie one end of the bouquet garni string to the pan handle, makes it so much easier to fish it out later!

Season with salt and pepper.

Cover the top of the pan with a piece of baking parchment and top with a lid.

Place the pan in the oven and cook for 4-5 hours.

By this point the meat should be very tender.

In a jug, combine the cornflour and a little water to make a cream like mixture.

Remove the casserole for the oven, while stirring, pour in the cornflour mixture mix until the meat sauce thickens.

Check seasoning and remove bouquet garni.

Serve with spinach or buttered cabbage and potatoes.

Leftovers

Left over delights
Left over delights

This casserole is fabulous  in a pie, cook a  few extra potatoes when making this meal, cut them up and add them to the meat mixture.

Take pastry sheets, cut to shape, line pie cases, fill, brush edges with beaten egg, top with pastry, seal edges with a fork, trim excess pastry, brush with egg and cut a slit in the lid to allow steam to escape.

At this point I freeze most of the pies and keep a few out for dinner.

Hot Lemon Pudding

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This lemon pudding self sauces so all you need to add is maybe a dollop of cream!

Ingredients

75g butter

175g caster sugar

3 eggs, separated

75g self raising flour

2 lemons, zest and juice

200mls milk

Preheat the oven to 180degrees Centigrade.

Grease a deep baking dish, 2 litre capacity.

In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks, set aside.

In another large bowl, whisk the butter and sugar.

Add the egg yolks, one at a time, to the butter and sugar mix, beat well in.

Fold in half the flour followed by half the lemon zest and  juice.

Repeat the flour, lemon zest and juice.

Fold in the milk.

Carefully fold in the egg whites.

Pour the batter into the prepared dish.

Bake for 50mins until golden brown.

Bacon and Egg Pie

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This recipe manages to sneak some spinach into fussy kids with the flavours of bacon and cheese disguising a vegetable.

I make two pies at a time and freeze one, great for lunch boxes and picnics. Using a cake tin allows for more depth so I use a 20cm fixed base tin.

The pies in the picture have been made with home made pastry, only because I didn’t have any frozen at home! Frozen butter puff pastry works well and usually I have some in the freezer, frozen spinach is very handy too.

Over time I have changed the layering depending on what the boys aren’t eating at the time so feel free to mix it up, bacon on top, cheese through the spinach mix, whatever works for your family!

Serves 6

Ingredients

500g block of puff pastry, defrosted

150g bacon, diced

125mls sour cream

125mls milk

7 eggs

1 egg beaten

150g frozen spinach, defrosted and all water squeezed out

Freshly grated nutmeg

salt and pepper

50g finely grated Parmesan

Method

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Centigrade.

Heat a pan over a medium heat and cook the bacon, set aside.

In a jug, combine the sour cream, milk, spinach, 3 eggs, grated nutmeg to taste and salt and pepper.

On a floured surface, cut 2/3 of the pastry off and roll out until it fits the tin including the sides, leave any overhang.

Spread the bacon on the pie base, pour over the spinach mixture.

Gently crack the four remaining eggs on top, try to keep them a little separate.

Sprinkle the cheese on top.

Roll out the remaining pastry, until slightly larger than lid required.

Brush the beaten egg around the edges of the pie base, top with the lid.

With a fork, gently press all around the pie to seal.

Take a sharp knife and gently remove any excess pastry, giving you a smooth edge against the tin.

Make two slits in the top to allow steam to escape.

Brush the lid with beaten egg.

Place on a baking tray, just in case it leaks.

Bake for 40 mins until golden.

Allow to sit for 20mins before cutting.

Feeding a hungry family!