In the kitchen – brunch recipes


YEAST PASTRY  (Recipe follows)

1 large white onion, peeled and finely chopped

8 spring onions, trimmed and chopped

1 -2 tablespoons virgin olive oil

1 large bunch of spinach, trimmed and shredded

1 -2 cloves garlic, crushed

150g ricotta cheese

3 free-range eggs. Lightly beaten

Salt and pepper, to taste

2 teaspoons chopped fresh French tarragon (or preferred herb)

2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

roasted red capsicum, julienned (for garnish)

chopped parsley

ITALIAN YEAST PASTRY:  Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of granulated yeast into 1

tablespoon of cold water in a mixing bowl.  Add 1 free-range egg, a little

salt and 1 teaspoon olive oil.  Beat until blended.  Add 1/3 cup each of

plain flour and wholemeal flour and beat until smooth. Knead on a lightly

floured board for a few minutes, shape into a ball and wrap in plastic,

leave for 20 minutes before rolling on a very lightly  floured board.

Prepare Yeast Pastry.  Roll thinly  and place into a shallow, lightly oiled

tin, allowing an excess pastry to drape over the edge.

Saute the onions in heated oil until limp, add spinach and garlic and cook

until softened. Squeeze out any excess liquid and place spinach into a bowl,

allow to cool.


Stir in ricotta, eggs, seasoning, herbs and about 3/4 of the cheese. Spoon

into the pastry case, fold the pastry over the edges of the filling.

Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the filling.


Bake in preheated 210oC oven for 15 minutes, reduce heat to 180oC and bake

for a further 15 minutes or until set. To serve, cool slightly before

cutting into portions, serve at room temperature or allow to become cold.

Garnish with strips of grilled red capsicum and parsley.





Serve this soft, buttery cake for afternoon tea or as a warm dessert cake

served with cream.


250g butter (at room temperature)

1 cup castor sugar

Grated zest of 1 lemon or orange

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

4 free-range eggs, beaten

1 tablespoon milk

3/4 cup self raising flour

1/2 cup plain flour

Approx. 1 kg stone fruit (nectarines and plums unpeeled, peaches skinned)

Coarse brown sugar or icing sugar

Heat oven to 180oC.

Beat together butter and castor sugar until pale and creamy, sprinkle in

citrus zest and cinnamon, add egg mixture and milk gradually and beat well.

Sift in the mixed flours and fold in gently.

Lightly butter and flour a 25cm – 30cm spring form pan and spoon in the

mixture and spread evenly. (This will be quite a thin layer.) Cut the fruit

into quarters or thin slices and arrange closely on the surface of the cake.

Bake for 30 – 40 minutes or until cake tests as cooked through. Sprinkle on

brown sugar or icing sugar before serving.





This is highly nutritious, zesty in flavour and a lovely accompaniment to

all kinds of main courses.  Ideal for a barbecue or a picnic, too.


2 medium sized raw beetroot, peeled and coarsely  grated

2 medium sized carrots, scrubbed and coarsely grated

1 small red onion, peeled and slivered thinly

Plenty of coarsely  chopped Continental parsley

Sea salt and coarse pepper to taste

Small quantity of preferred dressing (I like a mixture of egg mayonnaise and

French dressing)

Toasted pine nuts (optional)


Prepare vegetables, combine in a bowl. Add the parsley, salt and pepper.

Pour on the dressing and toss lightly but thoroughly  (Not too much

dressing!)  Transfer to a serving bowl, sprinkle with pine nuts and serve.

This is also delicious served the day after it is prepared but do not add

the pine nuts until serving time.





Bananas were a luxury item for some time but once again are readily available

at a reasonable price, especially if they are a bit over-ripe.

This makes them perfect for this recipe, which is a delicious addition to

lunchboxes, for afternoon tea or to pack for a picnic.


2 – 3 very ripe bananas, peeled and chopped

2 tablespoons butter

1/2 cup castor sugar

1 free range egg

1 3/4 cups wholemeal self raising flour

3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon or mixed spices

3 tablespoons natural yoghurt

1/3 cup coarsely chopped walnuts (preferably Yarra Valley!)


Place chopped bananas, butter and castor sugar in a food processor, blend

together. Add the egg and mix until smooth.


Add half the flour and half the yoghurt, blend in briefly, add remaining

flour, yoghurt and nuts and process for just a few seconds.  Spoon into a

buttered loaf tin and bake in a preheated 170oC oven (fan forced) for 45 –

55 minutes.  Remove from tin, cool on  rack and store in cake tin.  Serve

with butter. This loaf freezes well.

Recipes by Ann Creber

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