Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Bulgarian-Inspired Stuffed Eggplant (Aubergine)

Attempted from a memory at a restaurant in Veliko Ternovo

I’ve made this for meat eaters, but it’s easily changed to suit the veggie/vegan taste

1 eggplant (aubergine)
Lemon juice

¼ carton ground (mince) beef / veggie mince (like Quorn, delicious!)
½ can chopped plum tomatoes
5 fresh cherry tomatoes, roughly chopped
½ white cooking onion, small dice
2 tbsp passata (I used the kind with basil in it, just from what I had in my fridge)
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 tsp herbs de provence
50ml tap water
1 heaped tbsp fromage frais
Parmesan to suit taste, finely grated
Cheddar (I use Red Leceister, but whatever suits), grated

Preheat oven to 175°C .
Slice the eggplant in half and slightly hollow out each half. Place in oven-safe dish. Pierce with a fork and sprinkle lemon juice over. Let sit.

Fry mince on medium-high heat in a large frying pan, adding onion, tomatoes and passata. When onions are soft, turn heat down to low, add garlic, herbs and water, to loosen sauce. Let simmer for approx 10mins, until sauce has thickened again.

Put eggplant in middle of oven and bake for 10mins.

Meanwhile, add fromage frais to topping and cook through. Turn heat off, add parmesan and mix through.

Remove eggplant from oven and spoon topping into hollowed out halves. Replace in oven and bake for 30mins.
After 30 minutes, check eggplant is soft. Sprinkle with cheddar and put under grill for about 8 minutes, until cheese is crisp.


Wednesday, 25 March 2009

wall hanging aren't just for castles anymore

So a little background on this one. When I was in Sri Lanka last June [June 08] on my whirlwind shortened visit [stupid plane delays :( I am still bitter!], my mum was taking me around all the important sights. You know, places like House of Fashion, Fashion Bug, Arpico, Liberty Plaza... and my favourite, Dwellings. I stepped foot into the home fashion and kitchen shop and fell in love. They had everything you could ever want and more. I could easily have lived there, for they had beds and pillows and blankets, cookware and plates, and, of course, a little rotti stand across the street so I wouldn't hunger.
I digress.
While in there, I happened upon this gorgeous wall hanging. I knew before I'd even moved into my house that it would be perfect in the stairwell. Top of the stairs, mirror at the bottom. Beautiful. It was all set out in my mind.
I left without it, but got a lovely surprise at Christmas when my mum and dad bought it for me. How spoiled am I?? It came home with me and I knew it had to go where I'd imagined for months. I bought a wooden dowel and some 'Taxi Cab Yellow' paint, and set to painting the heck out of that dowel.
As you can see, the hanging is NOT at the top of the stairs. The mirror wouldn't reflect it, the stairs were too steep... blah blah blah. So I've put it here and it's the first thing you see when you walk in the front door.
The colours are so vibrant, the patterns so beautiful. I love my little wall-hanging!

what to do, what to do

I'd bought some shelves in Oxfam ages ago. Like.... in August kind of ages ago. Finally, when I got home from Sri Lanka, I decided to do something with them. Before that, the time had never seemed right. I didn't have the time. I didn't know where they should go. But I'd bought a whole bunch of jars from Ikea.... they had to go somewhere!
Apparently I used the wrong kind of wall plugs... the wrong screws... the wrong everything. But I don't care. Because they look neat AND they haven't fallen down yet. I'll worry about using the right plugs when I come home from work and there's broken glass, rice and pasta strewn across the floor.

Plus, it's a handy spot to keep my cookbooks! ....of which I keep buying more, and more, and more... and more....

Thursday, 12 March 2009

Knitting is cool again

I've been inspired by the lovely House of Spoon to start knitting again.

I've started going to a weekly craft class and everything with my friend Jenny! Jenny lent me a book called... well, I can't remember what it's called. Possibly just 'Knitting' or 'I Love Knitting' or something. But it's full of basic patterns. So I got to work on what is called a 'Silk Evening Scarf.' I didn't use silk wool, instead opted for the cheapy double knit in a cobalt blue. And since I screwed it up so many times, I wouldn't call it 'evening' either!

Here you can see the lovely Tenderheart Bear getting his model on. [What, he felt left out of the blog!]

A Tale of Two Curtains

My kitchen windows were looking a little bare. I had bought some material when I was in Sri Lanka that I thought would be perfect for these windows.

Of course, it wouldn't fit in my buldging suitcase on the way home, so it had to wait for my parents to come over. Fine by me! Because, as you can see, my Dad was hard at work...

I think they look pretty darn good!


So, this guy I was seeing over Valentine's Day came up for dinner, my mum made a pot roast or something and it was delicious.

But the guy brought me a beautiful rose! Such a nice gesture... but I didn't have a vase!


the Bacardi bottle.

Pretty, no?

Welcome home

So, this should really be the first post... but since I was never home in the daylight, it's going to be post number 5...

Welcome to my house.