Avocado Carbonara

So we’re big pasta fans in this house, although as it’s been so hot here recently we’ve been opting more for salads like this, or BBQ, or anything that doesn’t involve having the stove on for too long. However, on this weekend just past, Dom took part in a triathlon, which means we spent the few days leading up to it doing that wonderful thing runners use pre-event – we carb-loaded. (by the way, no – I didn’t do the triathlon, but I had to join in on the food festivities to be supportive, right?)

in bowls

 

So I decided a nice creamy linguine carbonara seemed in order. It’d been a while, and also carbonara is freaking delicious. So off to the supermarket and home again, laden with pasta and cream and bacon and eggs and cheese. Only to discover, in my fruit bowl, an I-must-be-eaten-today avocado. Well, I can’t resist a good avo’, so that went in the mix too.

Here’s how I put it all together:

Ingredients (serves 4, or two over two days!)

500g pasta of choice, I prefer linguine or spaghetti

200ml cream

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

300g  bacon (no rind), diced

1 large onion, diced

2-4 crushed garlic cloves, depending on how strong you like your garlic. Actually I think I used 6…

about 50g grated parmesan cheese

1 large, ripe avocado (optional (but not to me)), chopped

salt and pepper, to taste

fresh chives or spring onion, chopped

chopped avocado with compost

egg mix

 Method

Put a pot of salted water on to boil, then put the pasta in to cook until al dente. Drain, set aside, keep warm.

fry bacon until it starts to brown, then add onion and garlic and let those fry up in the bacon fat (note – watch out here for curious/hungry fiancees here who smell what’s cooking and want to eat everything immediately. Chasing said persons off with a spatula may be effective, though only temporarily).

bacon frying

Add the cream once the onion is fried to translucency, and reduce the heat. Once cream begins to boil, add the drained pasta to the mix. Pour the eggs over the pasta, mixing through as you go so the egg sticks to the pasta. Then add in the avocado, sprinkle the cheese and chives and a good bit of salt and pepper, stir though, and you’re done!

ready to serve

 

Serve to aforementioned hungry person and a generous amount to yourself.

By the way, he did great in the triathlon!

Oh and I know I’ve been more food-focussed recently but there are other things I’ve been up to that aren’t edible, so I’ll share those with you before too long. In the meantime, do you have any comfort food you like finding an excuse to eat, like I do?

Cheers,

Luci

Coriander-Mint Quinoa Salad Deliciousness

It’s full-on summer here now, and so hot I had to go emergency bikini shopping last week (my one from last season had died on me, I think I need back-up swimwear supplies…). That also means it’s too hot to spend much time in front of a hot stove, or to turn the oven on. That’s how this recipe was born.

Ready to eat

This is a fairly simple recipe, but so yummy I just had to share. Dom liked it too, he ate three full bowls (always a good sign)!

Ingredients:

About 1.5 cups uncooked Quinoa

1 ripe avocado

1 red onion

1 cucumber

1 pack cherry tomatoes

1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained.

A good handful each of fresh mint and fresh coriander

juice from 1 lime

Salt and pepper and chilli flakes, to taste

Olive oil

Method:

Rinse uncooked quinoa thoroughly, then cook according to packet directions, leave to cool.

While quinoa cooks, finely dice onion, avocado and tomatoes. Add to a large bowl. Add drained chickpeas.

Finely chop coriander and mint, add to bowl. Add lime juice and cooled quinoa, season with salt and pepper and a little chilli, if you’re into that sort of thing. Mix thoroughly and serve with a light drizzle of olive oil.

That’s it! It’s a mixture of crunchy and creamy and tangy and refreshing, and perfect for these hot evenings.

Rinsing

Rinsed

Ingredients on board

Ingredients in bowl

Herbs

 

ready blurry

An added plus – it makes for a great take-to-work lunch (yes, these finished-product photos are all in my lunch box, I was too hungry to remember to take photos of it all plated up nice so let’s just assume the presentation was amazing, OK?).

And just because the sunsets have been incredible recently, here’s a pic from at the lake last week:

Sunset

Until next time, Cheers!

– Luci

What’s your favourite hot-weather dinner? 

 

 

 

Smashed Potatoes.

Crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside; that’s how roasted potatoes should be. Unfortunately, I don’t always seem to get them quite right when i bake spuds. Enter smashed potatoes! This is a super-easy recipe that is great on cold, rainy days like today (come back, sunshine!). 

photo 4

 

Dom’s out for a work dinner tonight which means I was just cooking for myself and my lunch tomorrow, so I took 8 smallish potatoes and boiled them whole in lightly salted water. Once they were soft through, I drained them and laid them in a baking tray. Then comes the smashing! I learned this from my cousin Jimmy a couple of years back but forgot about it until recently. Using a spatula or the back of a large spoon, press into the top of the potatoes until they get this squished, popped-open look. I think I could have boiled them a bit longer and they would have smooshed better, but I was hungry so this is how they are. Then simply drizzle with olive oil, add some salt and pepper, and pop in a 180 degree oven for half an hour.

Before:

photo 1

 

After:

photo 2

Yum! I served with sour cream and steamed green veggies, it was delicious. A big plate of  vegetables is one of my favourite comfort foods for rainy days. What’s your favourite? 

Cheers,

Luci

Refusing to say goodbye to favourite jeans.

I’ve started bike riding regularly this year, which I hadn’t done since I was a kid. It is so much fun: I love being out in the fresh air and getting some exercise; plus the bonus of not having to pay for tram tickets, or get coughed on by random strangers. Ah, the joys of public transport.

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Anyway, one problem I learned about the hard way is that I can’t necessarily wear my street clothes on the bike. Most stuff is OK, but I’ve damaged a few things. Namely, my favourite pair of jeans that I brought with me from Australia, and would wear almost every day. Not anymore though. They got a upper-leg tear that wasn’t patchable (I tried but it came open. Three times.) so I cut the legs off to try for shorts. Unfortunately, I’m long past the days where I can confidently leave the house in fraying cutoffs, so they became housework shorts and I thought they’d stay that way.

The summer weather has hit us now and I noticed many people getting around in shorts, which made me remember mine. I realised something that may have been immediately obvious to anyone else – I could hem them!

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 I got home, rolled the hems outwards so the inner material contrast would show, made sure all the frayed edges were tucked away, and sewed. Five minutes later I had an awesome pair of short-shorts, which are great for bike riding in this early summer heat! 

Have you ever had an obvious realisation of how to solve a problem, well after you gave up on the project? Or is it just me?

Cheers,

Luci

Addictive Chocolate Fudge Brownies.

fudge

Hi there! It’s been months since my last post so this is just a short-ish one to try to get me back in the habit of writing. My plan is to try for weekly posts so bear with me, and as a thanks for those who do, here’s the most delicious, addictive (seems that way anyway!), easy chocolate fudge recipe that I know.

Ingredients:

500g dark cooking chocolate
75g butter
400mL sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
pinch of each cinnamon and nutmeg (optional)

Method:
In a heatproof bowl over a pot of gently simmering water, melt butter, chocolate and condensed milk.
When melted, remove from heat. Stir in vanilla and spices. Pour into a lined baking tray, and put in the fridge to cool.
Cut into squares (it’s extremely rich so small squares will be best!) and serve.

It’s really that easy. Enjoy!

I’m really hoping to get back to creating and blogging again and I hope you’ll join me 🙂

Cheers,

Luci