Pork and broccoli stir fry

Thankyou for all your well wishes about my recent trip to hospital. I feel like I am well and truly on the mend now, and I cannot express just how happy I am to be home. For there is nothing better than sleeping in one’s bed is there?? Oh and cooking in one’s kitchen. IMG_5145 While there has not been a lot of baking going on recently, I have managed to cook a homemade dinner almost every night. This is almost certainly due to my Mum being in town, ready to give lots of cuddles to Charlotte if she stirs while dinner is being prepared, and Mr BBB is not yet home from work. In saying that, I have kept our dinners pretty simple. Easy to prepare, and quick to cook. The meal mantra of any new Mum I suspect. One such meal was this pork and broccoli stir fry. IMG_5134 Just a bunch of lovely fresh ingredients.. IMG_5137 Stir-fried with pork mince, spinach… IMG_5138 IMG_5139 And a handful of rice noodles. IMG_5140 And our easy dinner was done. IMG_5142 I always forget how wonderful mince works in stir-fries – it soaks up all the flavours of the sauce really well. IMG_5146 Then combined with my other love – rice noodles – I had one happy belly following this meal. IMG_5149 Delish! IMG_5144 Most ‘post natal’ meals to follow soon! What about you? Do you use mince in stir fries?

Nacho Sunday

Its been another productive day in the BBB household, with more things being crossed off my ‘waiting for baby’ to do list. By afternoon I was starting to feel a little stir crazy being cooped up inside, however, so I was very grateful when the rain stopped allowing me to get outside for a walk. Gotta stay active! And, while I have a very tasty dish marinating in the fridge for tonight’s dinner, I thought I would share last night’s carb fest with you. IMG_4938 aka. Nacho Sunday! But not just any nachos… IMG_4931 Herbed, bean and tomato nachos. IMG_4934 (chopped tomatoes, coriander, parsley and kidney beans). So very simple to make. Just layer…. IMG_4935 On layer… IMG_4936 On layer… IMG_4937 And into the oven… IMG_4939 Eaten picnic style from the coffee table, of course,  while watching the latest episode of Homeland. IMG_4940 A perfect carbed up Sunday night really Smile  What about you? Do you have a favourite nachos topping?

On a roll…

Last night Mr BBB and I attended the final class in a set of three antenatal classes. While the previous class was about all things “natural“ when it comes to labour, last night the midwife talked us through the various synthetic pain relief options, as well as what to expect during the first few weeks after the birth. I must say, I am really pleased with the hospital we have chosen, as all the midwives and other staff we have come across so far have been lovely. And not pushy at all. My only criticism of the classes, as I mentioned here, is that they run from 6.00pm to 9.00pm. ie. dinner time. ie. starting too early to have eaten dinner before hand. And finishing too late to eat dinner afterwards. A first world problem, I agree, but a problem for my tummy nonetheless. So, for the last two classes I packed dinner to take along with us (salad sandwiches, and then these wraps). But with extra time on my hands this week owing to being on maternity leave, I decided to get a little more creative. I was after something fresh, healthy and portable. IMG_4823 And rice paper rolls fit the bill just perfectly. roll I had originally planned on making a chicken variety, but with a block of tofu in the fridge needing to be used, I opted for a vegetarian version instead. IMG_4822 Along with a stack of other goodies… capsicum, cucumber, mushrooms, lettuce, vermicelli rice noodles and mint. Do not forget the mint! IMG_4824 All laid out and ready to roll. IMG_4826 IMG_4827 IMG_4825 Although the ingredients can take a little time to prepare, and the rolls can be a bit fiddly at first, once you get on a roll (*groan), they actually come together quite quickly. IMG_4832 Providing for a healthy, quick and portable meal! IMG_4830 All packed up and ready to go! What about you? Are you a fan of rice paper rolls?

Lazy gal’s herbed quinoa and mushrooms

Despite all appearances on this blog, I can assure you that some nights I find myself staring blankly in the fridge without a clue what to make for dinner. Throw in a long work day, an up and down pregnancy appetite, and the temptation to have a bowl of cereal instead of putting together a meal is ever present. However, knowing that I am ‘eating for two’, I have made a conscious effort when these moments strike to delve into the crisper drawer and try to put together something a little more nutritious. Tonight was one of those nights. Back in the pantry went the box of cornflakes, and out of the fridge came a bunch of mushrooms. IMG_4534 Along with a bag of herbs, picked from a friend’s garden, and kindly donated to the BBB kitchen. IMG_4535 Into a pan, with a heaped spoonful of ginger, IMG_4537 And a pile of quinoa (that I had pre-cooked for 15 minutes or so, until fluffy). IMG_4538 Warmed through for a couple minutes, and this lazy gal’s herbed quinoa and mushrooms was ready for the plate. And, with the help of Mr BBB who was out on BBQ duty, our dinner was complete. IMG_4539 Herb-filled quinoa… IMG_4540 Served with a sausage and grilled zucchini. IMG_4541 And certainly worth the effort! IMG_4542 Delish! What about you? What is your ‘fall back’ meal when the desire to cook is missing?

Warm cab-apple salad

Let me share with you one of my favourite meals from this week. IMG_4456 A dinner that was inspired by a recipe in a recent edition of the Healthy Food Guide, which remains the one and only magazine that I subscribe to. The recipe was for lemon and thyme pork with a cold cabbage salad. And while the idea of a cold cabbage salad didn’t have that much appeal to me, a warm cabbage salad with a few extras thrown in on the other hand, did! My warm version came together very easily, using some tasty produce from our crisper. IMG_4443 Cabbage for substance, carrot for colour and apple for sweetness. IMG_4448 Into a pan with a splash of olive oil, lemon juice and some dijon mustard. Finished with sunflower seeds for crunch… IMG_4452 And some fresh parsley. Too easy really! IMG_4449 I followed the recipe when it came to flavouring the pork fillets. IMG_4445 Just lemon zest and fresh thyme. IMG_4446 Grilled on our trusty grill for 5 minutes or so. IMG_4459 All together now! IMG_4457 And,  you know what? IMG_4460 Although the pork was lovely and tender, I would have also been quite happily to have eaten the warm cabbage salad all on its own. IMG_4453 It was sweet, and crunchy, with just a hint of spice from the mustard. IMG_4455 Definitely one to be repeated. IMG_4456 PS – I really don’t’ understand why cabbage has such a bad reputation. It can be jazzed up with spices and flavours so easily, that it really doesn’t have to be bland or boring at all. Warm cab-apple salad (serves 3-4 as a side dish) adapted from HFG

  • 1tbs olive oil
  • 1/8 green cabbage, shredded
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1 apple, grated
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tbs dijon mustard
  • 1 handful fresh parsley, chopped
  • 2 tbs sunflower seeds
  1. Heat oil in a frypan over a medium heat.
  2. Add the cabbage, carrot and apple, and cook until the cabbage has softened (stirring as required).
  3. Add the lemon juice and dijon mustard. And stir to combine.
  4. Add the parsley and sunflower seeds, and continue cooking for 4-5 minutes.
  5. Serve warm.

What about you? Are you a cabbage fan?

Stir it, fry it

That was certainly my mantra for dinner this evening. IMG_4379 Mr BBB worked late, then we wanted to fit in our evening walk, so a quick and easy dinner was a must. Rather unsurprisingly, we turned to a stir fry. Starting with rump steak, sliced and marinated in mixture of GF soy, rice wine, garlic and ginger. IMG_4368 For I am trying to include more red meat in my diet after finding our that I am slightly anaemic during my OB appointment the other week. IMG_4370 Stir-fried with broccoli.. IMG_4373 And served with a brown / white rice combination courtesy of our rice cooker. IMG_4374 Topped with green onions. And our dinner was complete. IMG_4376 To time save – we had put the rice cooker on, and had the meat marinating, while we were out for our walk. IMG_4369 Then, when we got home, it was just a matter of throwing the beef and vegetables into a wok and voila. IMG_4380 Dinner in a flash. What about you? Are you as in love with your rice cooker as we are? We bought the one pictured above using a gift voucher a while ago and I am smitten. It has a timer function and will cook my porridge to perfection In love(a big improvement on our last rice cooker that would leave half uncooked and stuck to the pot!)

Risotto for the busy girl

I. am. busy. And this crazy whirlwind of life doesn’t appear to be easing up any time soon. Work is crazy, my ‘social’ calendar is filling up, we have a nursery and study to finish, and a tonne of planting to do once our landscaping basics are completed. Throw in a couple work trips to Sydney and one to Perth….all in the next 7 days…and well you get the idea. So needless to say, quick and easy meals are the only ones making it onto our menu in the next few weeks. And tonight’s dinner was no exception. Helped, nay made, by my latest purchase… IMG_3674 A programmable rice cooker that has been on my wish for way too long! Into the rice cooker went oil and butter… IMG_3688 Followed by rice, IMG_3689 diced pumpkin and stock. IMG_3690 Then I hit start. And I walked away. And I returned 45 minutes later to find that I had a big batch of pumpkin risotto without ever having lifted a wooden spoon. IMG_3696 Finished with a few extras… IMG_3693 sundried tomatoes, basil and parmesan cheese. IMG_3694 And our rice cooker risotto was complete. IMG_3697 Aka. Risotto for the busy girl! IMG_3700 While the texture may not have been as luscious as its stove-top counterpart, the convenience of a ‘throw-in-walk-away" meal was too much to refuse. I was able to get a few things done around the house, without being chained to the stove top as I normally am when making risotto. IMG_3702 And besides, although the texture may have been a little different, the flavours themselves were fool proof. Pumpkin, sundried tomato and basil – how can you go wrong??. IMG_3699 Delish! What about you? Do you use your rice cooker to make anything apart from rice? My new one can make porridge too – which I am rather excited to try out! ———— PS – Thankyou for all your lovely comments about the recent Soon Maternity fashion challenge – you guys are too kind. Voting is still open on the photos over at their Facebook page if you have the time SmileAnd, don’t forget that one lucky voter will win a $100 voucher of their own! Wouldn’t it be great if it was a BBB reader!