Category Archives: Vegetables

Day 13 – Spinach and Fetta Rolls

 Blame my son. He turned up in Melbourne recently with his girlfriend and after introductions were made – and a soothing cup of tea to ease my acute nerves – he gently told me both of them were vegetarian. To which my response was, ‘Yes, and?’

I think we can safely say I have that side of things covered off.  And while I didn’t bat an eyelid, it was a good excuse as any to make a round of these rolls on what turned out to be the first really cold day of the year.  Continue reading Day 13 – Spinach and Fetta Rolls

Day 9 – Sweet Potato, Bacon and Haloumi Patties

I have adored cheese and mashed potato, mixed together, ever since I was a spotty teenager with questionable tastes in pop music. I don’t eat it often, but it is my go-to dish for when I’m feeling low, but not quite so low that I could eat my body weight in Tim Tams.

You get the picture: I really don’t need much persuasion. Continue reading Day 9 – Sweet Potato, Bacon and Haloumi Patties

Day 5 – Cauliflower Pakoras

Pakoras are fritters: Vegetable fritters. And if I was to simply leave it at that, you would never know just how sensational these crispy, warmly spiced flavour bombs are.

The batter is usually made with besan, a chickpea flour. You can buy it in large supermarkets, oddly positioned in the health food aisle, or you can find it in Indian grocers or in spice shops. It’s worth seeking out, as it makes a crispy, nutty flavoured batter. Continue reading Day 5 – Cauliflower Pakoras

Christmas – Colleen's Potato Salad

Last year I spent Christmas with my daughter, her boyfriend and his mum who made this lovely salad for Christmas lunch.  I’ve been saving it ever since, knowing that now is the perfect time of the year to share it with you.

There is much you can make ahead of the day, including cooking the potatoes and eggs, leaving you only to mix it all together at the last minute. Continue reading Christmas – Colleen's Potato Salad

Christmas – Mark's Herbed Roasties

This is part of the $80 Family Favourites Christmas Lunch for 6 people.

Links to the full menu and prep guides will be published at the end of the week.


Over the last few years I have lost count of friends who have told me they feel nervous about cooking for me. This is a tremendous shame for many reasons: First of all, I would never, NEVER want my friends to feel nervous around me for any reason. Secondly, I cook so much and so frequently that I am pathetically grateful for a toasted cheese sandwich if it means I don’t have to do it myself. Thirdly, I’m not exactly a food snob – I haven’t reached that point where only the very best is good enough and if I ever do reach that point, I hope my friends bitch-slap me back to reality. Continue reading Christmas – Mark's Herbed Roasties

Christmas – Broccoli and Blue Cheese Gratin

This is part of the $80 Family Favourites Christmas Lunch for 6 people.

Links to the full menu and prep guides will be published at the end of the week.


A simple variation on broccoli in a cheese sauce, this makes Christmas entertaining memorable and just a bit special.

If you want to do as much as possible ahead of schedule, then make this the day before and store it, already cooked and in its serving dish, in the fridge, simply covered with a sheet of foil. From there, it’s a simple matter of heating it back up, covered, for 25 minutes in a hot oven. Continue reading Christmas – Broccoli and Blue Cheese Gratin

Christmas – Lemony Green Beans

This is part of the $50 Christmas lunch for four.

Click here for the full menu plus step-by-step guides.

This proves that simple is best – green beans need nothing more than some lemon and olive oil to give it a lift, and next to the richness of the main course of duck, or the strong flavours of sweet potato and trout, this is a lighter side dish, a welcome contrast to your multi-layered Christmas meal. Continue reading Christmas – Lemony Green Beans

Day 2 – Sweet Potato and Scorched Onion Skordalia

I confess, I often overlook sweet potato. It’s not that I don’t love it, it’s just that I have to make a conscious effort to add it to my shopping list. I don’t seize upon it the way I would asparagus, or pomegranate. Or ordinary food-coma inducing white potato.

What will seize my imagination every time is a good price and sweet potato were very well priced at my local markets last week, so I grabbed a couple. Continue reading Day 2 – Sweet Potato and Scorched Onion Skordalia

Day 12 – Spiced Roast Cauliflower

The great advantage of roasting food of course is that it practically does itself. Cooks love to remind us that it’s a few minutes of effort at the beginning and then a few hours of nothing much at all.

But they always forget to tell us about the frantic last fifteen minutes when we scramble to get a meal on the table that’s hot and ready to go at the same time. It’s like being asked to sprint that last 100 metres after running a marathon. Continue reading Day 12 – Spiced Roast Cauliflower

Day 13 – Creamy Vegetable Soup

It’s been a while since I’ve had this soup, but then again, it’s been a while since hot weather. While the rest of the country has sweltered, I still have my blankets on the bed. Every time I think now would be a good time to remove them, along comes another cold front.

It’s January as I write this and I’m wearing ugg boots.

So, back to vegetable soup. This was always going to be on the cards given I had half a fridge of vegies to empty before the next market excursion, but I had forgotten how wonderful such a bowl could be. It’s very delicately flavoured and that’s part of the charm. Continue reading Day 13 – Creamy Vegetable Soup