Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Wow this is actually almost Decembery

It's cold! I'm wearing 2 pairs of trousers and jumpers. It's been raining for 2 days. Apparently it's the coldest December for 40 years!'s 19 degrees C. Which is confusing because that is warm in England. But I'm cold. But I don't move and I don't make heat so there you go. I find myself wishing for an aga, a very strange time and place to do so.

Luckily the Aussies feel the cold too and understand. Ray made a fire for the first time in history in December last night!

I made a veggie pie last night and I was so impressed with it I thought I'd do a food blog.

Bean and Veg Pie with Polenta Crust

For the filling:
6 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped (I used half an onion and half a leek)
2 cloves garlic, crushed
700 g mixed vegetables, baby carrots, Jerusalem artichokes (didn’t use), cauliflower, sweet potato, squash, parsnips, turnips, button mushrooms, button onions etc
1x400 g tinned cannellini beans (I used a ‘4 bean mix’ instead), drained and washed
500 ml dark vegetable stock
150 ml red wine
400 ml passata
2 tsp arrowroot (didn’t use, you can us cornflour instead though)
black pepper
1 tbsp chopped tarragon (didn’t use)

For the topping:
2 eggs
150 ml plain yogurt
125 g cheddar cheese, grated
100 g instant polenta
100 g '00' flour (used gluten free)
1 tsp baking powder
50 g parmesan, grated  
1. Preheat the oven to 200C/gas 6. Heat the oil in a deep frying pan and fry the onion, leek and garlic for a couple of seconds to soften slightly.

2. Add the vegetables and fry for a while, until golden.

3. Add the beans, stock, wine and passata.

4. Mix the arrowroot/cornflour with a little water and add to the pan, stirring well. Bring to the boil, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, and simmer for 20 minutes.

5. Transfer to an ovenproof dish and sprinkle with the tarragon.

6. For the topping, whisk together the eggs and yogurt, then stir in the cheddar cheese, polenta, flour and baking powder.

7. Spread the mixture over the vegetables to create a thick crust. Scatter over the Parmesan cheese and bake for 20 minutes. Serve hot.


Zappa goes surfing everyday at 6 (including this morning, when it is chucking it down!). Yesterday he took Ray's big mal out ('Big Yellow', 9'8"!) and when he came back I don't think I have ever seen him so enthused, ever! He was raving about how amazing it was, the 200m ride he got all along the break, that he could just do that all day forever...quite funny cos he was a bit reluctant to get a bigger board, and wanted manoeuverability, and when he tried the mal he was just instantly converted! Oo I think he's just come back in, wonder how it went...

Apparently it was alright, bit messy, there were some big waves, he got plenty of white water rides, and his towel got wet in the rain.

Now you know.

Breakfast time!

1 comment:

  1. well we've needed the aga here too. We now have oil but the electics in the airing cupboard are not working - so no heating. I moved the TV into the dining room and lit the fire -mmm cosy watching Frozen Planet ( Australia didn't feature!)