egg and bacon muffins

All you ever wanted for breakfast in one neat little parcel! These are adapted from Sarah Wilson’s recipe – I’ve just used persian fetta because it’s the best – fetta in oil (so there’s no need to grease the muffin tray), marinated with thyme, garlic, bay leaves and peppercorns. Brilliant.

These tasty protein pockets were a great favourite at the breakfast table on Easter morning. My folks are always looking for ways to use up the copious amount of eggs their chooks lay about the farm. While I always buy free range, nothing beats the bright yellow yolks and the creamy texture of freshly laid eggs. After I served the urban-version to their rumbling tummys, I get the feeling they’ll be taking a little bit of the city back to the country…

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To make six muffins:

  • 4-6 rashers bacon
  • 6 eggs
  • Persian fetta
  • Chives, chopped finely

Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Slice the bacon so that it lines the edges of 6 muffin cups. Line the bottom with any any broken bits.
Crumble a teaspoon of fetta into each muffin cup and sprinkle with chives.

Crack one egg into each and gently poke a knife through the yoke so that it breaks ever so slightly.

Bake for 15 minutes, until the egg is white and set. Remove from the oven an let sit for a minute or two.

Run a knife between to the bacon and the muffin tray to separate any bits that are stuck and then use a spoon to gently remove the muffins from the tray.

Serve with crusty bread, some avocado, and perhaps a little slice of lemon on the side. There’s really no need for any extra seasoning as the bacon provides enough salt and the fetta is infused with pepper. But pop it on the table for sheer aesthetics alone – and marvel at how no one even bats an eye.

Tastes like home…

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chocolate fudge brownie

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Everyone loves a chocolate brownie. These little crowd pleasers were subject to heckling in the baking of them. Housemates were crying out in revolt, “Can you stop with the chocolate smells, please?!” My gym-geared gal pal hollered, “You’re killing me in here!”

I tried to ease their pain and get rid of the evidence by licking the spoon…the bowl…and the bench. But now, as I sit here waiting to pull my little slice of chocolate heaven out of the oven, we’re all helpless to its charms. We’re salivating like hounds, scratching at the oven door…

They will be mine. Oh yes…they will be mine…

  • 225g butter (I used Nuttelex for a dairy free option, plopped straight into the saucepan), chopped coarsely (or 150g butter + 1/2 cup or 120g sour cream)
  • 300g dark eating chocolate (I used 80% cocoa dark Lindt blocks), broken into chunks
  • 1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar or 200g caster sugar if you prefer
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 3/4 cup (150g) hazelnut or almond meal
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 100g walnuts, chopped

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C (160 degrees C fan-forced).

Melt the chocolate and the butter in a medium sized saucepan over low heat. Stir in the sugar and vanilla essence and take off the heat to cool for about 10 minutes.

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While you wait, beat the eggs, crush the walnuts, sift the cocoa and line a slice pan approx 19cm x 29cm with baking paper.

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Stir through the eggs, flour, cocoa and walnuts. Turn the mixture into the lined pan and spread evenly.

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Bake brownies for 35-45 minutes, depending on your preferred gooey rating. At 35 minutes, they will be firm on top, but still squidgy underneath. At 45 minutes, they should be more solid throughout.

Cool in the pan before cutting into squares. Serve dusted with cocoa or icing sugar…if you can bear to wait that long…

no crust no fuss quiche

This has become a staple in our ‘sensitive’ home. Inspired by Lee Holmes’ crustless quiche, this one has all the bases covered on the ‘feel good’ front. My gluten-free, dairy-intolerant housemate and fructose free me love baking up a big batch of this for the week ahead. It happily travels with us to work, it’s comfortably waiting when we stumble through the door at the end of a long day…and peps us up with a belly full of warmth after a morning at the gym. We’ve been known to mix up the veggie selection, add bacon, sliced chicken or a tin chilli tuna for a carnivorous alternative or mix and match herbs and spices. But one thing’s for sure, we keep on coming back for more.

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  • 8 eggs
  • 125ml almond milk (or milk alternative)
  • 2 tblsp nutritional yeast flakes (optional – cheesey flavouring for the non-dairy, or alternatively add your favourite baking cheese)
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cups sautéed chopped mixed vegetables (we love garlic, spinach/kale, zucchini, red capsicum, cherry tomatoes, pumpkin/sweet potato as a good combo…and I like to mix up the oils in the sautéing to include sesame, coconut or olive)

We also love..

  • A sprinkle of paprika
  • Tsp or two of chilli paste or chopped fresh red chilli

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C and grease a 22cm diameter pie dish. I tend to lay grease proof paper for easy removal later.

Whisk the eggs in a large bowl, then whisk in the milk and yeast flakes. Scatter the veggies (and meat, if using) in the pie dish and pour the egg mixture over the top.

Bake for 25-30mins or until it is set in the middle and the top has lightly browned.

Serves 4.

madame anne’s orange brothel cake

This is a tribute to one of my most favourite of lady friends. She has recently become a new Mum for the first time and boy, if she wasn’t an amazing performer before, that woman is going to be (capital D) Devine in this new role! Lovely Sarah posted this on an Australian tour we were blogging about for a little show called Red Sky Morning…trust me on this – we talked about this for days…!

madam anne’s orange brothel cake

Before you read on, I must warn you that this blog has absolutely nothing to do with theatre and everything to do with my stomach.

I am not a big blogger – if you have been reading this you will discover that I have managed to post about umm…once in 6 weeks. This is entirely due to a combination of severe inertia coupled with a disastrous track-record with losing things stored on computers. This means I manage to stay away from them as much as possible ( try rewriting 10 000 words of a thesis and you may understand my fear )

You can, therefore, imagine my consternation when I finally opened this blog to find that the lengthy tome I had written some weeks ago – my homage to all things edible- had been lost in translation. Not a real tragedy, but it does mean that no one, yet, has read of the superb meal we consumed in Queanbeyan and more importantly, been able to recreate one of the most orgasmic cakes I have ever tasted. Yep, the theatre blog has been infiltrated by the food obsession we all share and so, it would be remiss of me not to re-introduce you to the recipe for madam anne’s orange brothel cake.

The cake is so named because madam anne, who resides with the lovely richard (brother of Dave, creator of internationally renowned glass sculptures) is an incredible class A cook and very generously invited us all over for a sumptuous dinner. Naturally we accepted with pleasure and tried not to eat most of that day. Much.

Richard and Anne live in an incredible converted warehouse – once a house of ill repute, hence the ‘brothel’ in the cake title – and now an extraordinary split level light and art filled space. Wow is not the word.

So dinner, in the ex bordello, began with Veuve in sexy glassware… and went uphill from there. Morroccan lamb tagine, asparagus spears, salads of rocket and beetroot with sheeps milk fetta. Yum. Yum. And yum. To this little touring party, existing in outer Canberra without kitchens and with the culinary delights of tinned tuna to inspire us, it was heaven in foodie form.

So, as I said, this post has nothing to do with theatre but lots to do with the good things in life –  Madam Anne’s orange brothel cake being one of them. I can’t tell you if it is easy or hard as I haven’t made it yet – However! it is Tom’s birthday on monday and it is my turn to cook the family dinner so will keep you posted…here it is

  • madam anne’s orange brothel cake
  • 375 grams of Honey Murcott mandarins and Meyer lemons (or ordinary old oranges if you can’t get the exotic ones)
  • 250 grams almond meal
  • 175 grams caster sugar
  • Teaspoon baking powder
  • 6 eggs
  • Cook oranges in a pot of boiling water for 1.5 hours. Cool. Remove seeds and pulp, skin and all. Add sugar to the citrus pulp. Beat eggs until light and fluffy then add the almond meal and fold together. Combine with the orange pulp mix, and pour into a greased loaf tin. Bake for approx one hour at 190. Check at half and 45 min marks. Serve with chantilly cream – whipped cream with caster sugar and vanilla bean paste mixed through.

– 3rd November, 2011