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Saturday, March 17, 2012

Girls night in

Had a few gal pals over for a DVD night and some drinks and nibbles a couple of Saturday nights ago.  Apart from the usual cheese, quince paste, olive tapenade etc platters, we also had a hot cobb dip and finished off the night with some Individual Baileys Cheesecakes.

Hot Cobb Dip:
Mix 250 g cream cheese, 1 cup sour cream, 1 cup grated cheese, 1 finely chopped onion and 200 grams finely chopped ham in a bowl.  Slice the top from a large cobb and remove the inside bread and reserve.  Spoon mixture into cobb "shell", wrap tightly in foil and place in a slow oven for approx 1 hour or until mixture is hot.  Serve with the reserved bread and additional bread/rolls.

Individual Baileys Cheesecakes:
Mix 375 grams cream cheese, 3/4 cup castor sugar, 3 tablespoons liqueur (Baileys Irish Cream or similar) and 1 teaspoon vanilla essence until well combined. Add 3 eggs (1 at a time) beating after each until smooth.  Line 12 hole muffin pan with strips of baking paper. Place a plain uniced chocolate biscuit in bottom of each hole and spoon mixture evenly over top of chocolate biscuits.  Bake for 15 - 20 minutes in a moderate oven or until just set.  Cool at room temperature and chill for 1 - 2 hours.  Serve topped with whipped cream.

Thursday, March 1, 2012


I am still having a love affair with the breakfast smoothie.  It is summer time in Australia so this is a refreshing way to start the day and make the most of the beautiful summer fruits.

I have already written about banana smoothies and strawberry smoothies in previous posts, so here are a few more that I am tinkering with.  Fruit can be fresh, frozen or even tinned.  Yoghurt doesn't really matter if it is flavoured or plain - just put in what you have and see what it tastes like.  Milk can be full cream, skim, rice, soy - again doesn't matter.  You could also add a scoop of icecream or even some protein powder if you wanted.

Peach and Raspberry Smoothie:
Blend 1 cup peach slices, 1/2 cup raspberries, 350ml apple juice, 1/2 cup yoghurt and crushed ice until smooth.

Fruit Smoothie:
Blend 1 banana, 1/2 cup strawberries, 3/4 cup pineapple juice and crushed ice until smooth.

Orange Smoothie:
Remember the Orange Pulp? - I still have some in the freezer, so thought I would try it as a smoothie.
Blend 1 cup orange pulp, 1/2 cup yoghurt and crushed ice until smooth.

Banana Berry Smoothie:
Blend 1 banana, 1/2 cup milk, 1/4 cup blueberries, 1/4 cup strawberries, 1/2 teaspoon honey and crushed ice until smooth.