Random Quote: Ordinarily, people are anxious to test their theories in practice, to learn from experience, but those who wield power are so anxious to establish the myth of their own infallibility that they turn their backs on the truth as squarely as they can. Politics means nothing to me. I don’t like people who are indifferent to the truth. – Boris Pasternak


These are just my own notes so I don’t forget how to make the things I like. Most are taken from existing recipes on the web, and I’m too lazy to attribute them properly.

Bolognese Sauce

  • 500g beef mince

  • 650g onions

  • 4 400g tins of chopped tomatoes

  • 200g tomato concentrate

  • 1 teaspoon each: salt, pepper, paprika, sambal oelek (hot chilli)

  • 2 tablespoons oregano

  • 2 cloves of garlic

  • 1 tablespoon honey

  • 1 glass (125ml) red wine

  • splash of worcester sauce

Fry onions in olive oil. Add mince and fry until crumbly. Add all the rest and simmer for an hour or so without lid until it reduces.


  • 1 cup semolina

  • 3 cups soy milk

  • 3 cups water

  • Currents, butter, nutmeg

Heat liquid until almost boiling. Turn down heat and pour in semolia slowly while mixing with a whisk. Now mix with a wooden spoon until thick. Put in bowls. Top with currents (and almond flakes if you have them) fried in butter, nutmeg.


  • 750g sirloin or rib eye, thin sliced

  • 1 onion

  • 1 negi/leek

  • 8 shiitake mushrooms

  • marinade

    • minced garlic

    • 4 tablespoons soy sauce

    • 1 tablespoon brown sugar

    • 1 tablespoon honey

    • 2 tablespoons sake

    • 1 tablespoon sesame oil

    • 1 large nashi pear

    • 2 spring onions, sliced fine

Marinade beef for 2 hours plus. Fry marinaded beef and other ingredients on high heat for about 4 minutes. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds.

Optional: Serve with samujan and lettuce leaves

Korean Dressing

  • 1 tablespoon gochujang

  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon each of soft brown sugar, soy sauce, sesame oil and sesame seeds

This is a perfect combination of different tastes. Use to dress lightly cooked asparagus, capsicum, zucchini, etc.

Juicy Chocolate Cake

Thanks to Mum for this one ; )

  • 125g self raising flour

  • 125g ground hazelnuts

  • 125g butter or margarine

  • 185g sugar

  • 65g cocoa (or 125 drinking chocolate but reduce sugar by 60g)

  • 4 eggs

  • 1 large grated apple

Cream sugar and butter. Beat egg whites till stiff. Add egg yolks to butter/sugar mixture. Fold in flour and/or nuts and drinking chocolate (pref mixed together) alternately with whipped egg whites. Lastly add grated apple. Bake in medium oven (about 170C) for approximately one hour. I use a pan with removable base as the cake can stick. Otherwise you can line the cake tin.

Ceasar Salad

  • Dressing
    • 3/4 cup mayo

    • Juice of 1/2 lemon

    • Dash of Worcestershire sauce

    • Bit of salt, pepper

    • Plenty of grated parmisan

    • 1 clove garlic, crushed

  • Other
    • Lettuce, couple of poached eggs, croutons

Avocado Salsa

  • 1 lime, grated peel and juice

  • 2 tomatoes, finely chopped

  • 1 jalapeno, seeded, finely chopped

  • 1/2 small red/white onion, chopped

  • 1/4 avocado, peeled and cut into small slices

  • fresh parsley leaves

  • red wine vinegar

  • cumin

  • sliced cucumber

Put in a bowl and it’s done. Don’t be shy with the cumin.

Broccoli Indian Style

  • broccoli

  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds

  • 1 onion

  • 1 teaspoon each: turmeric, garam masala

  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander

  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

  • 2 tablespoons plain yogurt

  • 1 tablespoon shredded coconut

  • 1/4 cup water

  • 2 tomatoes, chopped

Steam broccoli for a few minutes. Fry mustard seeds, turn heat down and add onion. Fry for a while. Add all remaining ingredients except broccoli. Bring to a boil, and then add broccoli. Simmer a few minutes.

Lemon Tart

Note: This recipe is heavy on lemon and light on sugar.

For the base:

  • 185g plain biscuits (you know, like the ones you have with tea)

  • 90g butter, melted

  • cinnamon, nutmeg

Crumb the biscuits in a food processor, combine remaining goodies, press into base and sides of greased pan. Stick it in the fridge for an hour. Meanwhile,

Lemon curd:

  • juice of 3 lemons

  • 4 eggs

  • 2/3 cup caster sugar

  • 125g butter, chopped

Grate rind of 2 lemons. Juice all lemons. Mix eggs and sugar together in heatproof bowl, add lemon rind and lemon juice, stir well. Place bowl in a saucepan above simmering water (not touching). Cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, until thick (about 20 minutes). Don’t boil. Remove from heat and mix in butter. Pour onto base, cover with cling wrap and refrigerate overnight.

Spicy Lentil and Coriander Soup

Thanks to Azza for this recipe:

  • 500g red lentils, well rinsed

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 2 onions, chopped

  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped

  • 2 celery sticks, chopped

  • 400g can tomatoes, drained

  • 1 chili, de-seeded (optional)

  • 1 teaspoon paprika

  • 1 teaspoon harissa

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1.2 litres vege stock

  • salt, pepper

  • fresh coriander

Put the lentils in a bowl and rinse. Heat oil and fry onions, garlic, celery till soft. Lower heat. Drain lentils and add along with tomatoes, chili, paprika, harissa, cumin, salt and pepper and stock. Cover pan, simmer gently for 2 hours (add water if it thickens too much). Top with fresh coriander. Serve with good crusty bread.


Recipe from maangchi and you should probably read it at the source

  • 1 whole chicken

  • 1.25 cups rice

  • 2 eggs

  • 3 green onion (negi) stalks

  • 1.25 cups peeled garlic cloves

For the dipping sauce

  • 2 tbs soy sauce

  • 1 tbs each of vinegar and chopped negi

  • 1 teaspoon each of chilli flakes, sesame seeds and sugar

Trim fat from stomach / tail with scissors. Put the rice to soak in cold water. At the same time, put the chicken in a large pot with 12 cups water and the garlic. Bring to the boil, boiling over high heat for 40 minutes and then low-medium for 20. Now drain the rice and add it to the pot. Cook for another 30 minutes, skimming excess fat with a ladel.

Take the chicken out of the pot and put it on the table to serve. Make the dipping sauce. Finally, to the pot, add the beaten eggs and chopped negi. Pause for 10 seconds for egg to cook, and then stir lightly. Serve as soup.

Serve with salads and other fresh greens.

Simmered Daikon with Pork

  • Nice big piece of kombu (10cm^2 or more)

  • 1 small-medium daikon, peeled and cut into slices, then quarters

  • 500g fresh pork belly, thin sliced or chunks

  • 3 cups water

  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce

  • 3 tablespoons sake

  • 3 tablespoons sugar

Put first 4 ingredients into a pot and simmer for 40 mins. Add last 3 ingredients, simmer for another 20. Remove kombu to serve.

Japanese Style BBQ Salmon

For each moderate to small sized piece of salmon:

  • 0.5 teaspoons sake

  • 1.5 teaspoons soy sauce

  • 1.5 teaspoons mirin

  • 25g enoki or simeji mushrooms

  • 25g negi (green onion), just the white bit, sliced longways

Season fish with the sake and some pepper, let sit for 10 minutes. Put onto small sheet of foil, add mushrooms and negi to the bottom of the foil, and then salmon on top. Pour on mirin and soy sauce. Fold up foil to make it air-tight, and then put on BBQ (or bake) for 10 minutes.

Chicken Curry

Neither authentic nor original, but it makes a nice curry

  • 500g chicken thighs

  • 1 onion

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 2 tsp grated ginger

  • 2 green chilies, seeds removed

  • 2-3 tbs curry paste (e.g., tikka masala or thai yellow curry)

  • 400ml can crushed tomatoes

  • 400ml can coconut milk

  • 2 tbs peanut butter

  • 2 tbs chopped coriander

Preheat oven to 190°C. Heat oil in an oven-proof pot. Add the chicken, onion, garlic, chilli and ginger. Cook, stirring, till chicken starts to brown. Add curry paste and cook, stirring, for a further 1 minute. Stir in tomato, coconut milk and peanut butter. Cover and bake for 45 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and the sauce has thickened. Stir through chopped coriander.

Good with home made naan — I’m still looking for a recipe I like

Apple Pie

There are many variations, but here’s the way I like to make it


  • 250g plain flour

  • 125g butter

  • 30g soft sugar

  • 1 egg

  • some cold milk


  • 5 green apples, a few sultanas, some lemon juice, sugar to taste

Preheat oven to 180°C. Make the pastry in a food processor. Add flour, butter, sugar to processor and pulse mix until it looks like breadcrumbs. Mix the egg and add about 80% of it, and then tiny bits of cold milk, mixing briefly each time, until it just starts to (or looks like it will) come together into a single mass. Pull it out, shape into a nice ball, put in cling wrap and leave in fridge for 15 minutes. In the meantime, cook the filling in a pot — nothing tricky here. Finally, roll out the pastry in two lots, bottom first. Put in filling, roll out and put on top. Brush on last bit of egg combined with a little milk and sugar. Bake for 45 minutes.

Pizza Dough

  • 153g plain flour

  • 153g oo flour (high grade plain flour)

  • 2~3g dry yeast

  • 8g salt

  • 4g olive oil

Combine flours and salt. Mix dry yeast with 200g lukewarm water. Add olive oil. Mix with flours. Knead with hands for about 3 minutes, until combined. Rest for 15 minutes. Knead again for 3 and then cut into 2 or 3 balls. (Three if, like me, you struggle with getting larger pizzas onto the stone.) Place under a damp cloth and let rise for 4 hours (or 24 in cling wrap in fridge).