Category Archives: Recipes


Muddy Hubby has a tradition, it was instilled in him as a kid by his Mum. When it rains, it’s time for scones. It’s all good in theory but on days where I work or things are busy it doesn’t always happen. It seems however that my Muddy Kids have inherited his love of scones and this weekend they were relentless in their request for them, eventually I set aside some time and we whipped up a big batch, so there was enough for lunchboxes as well.
I used to be scared of making them, but a few handy tips mean I will now give them a go without fear. I am not brave enough to enter them in the local show but they definitely fill the belly.
2.5 cups Self-Raising Flour
1 Tbsp Caster Sugar
1/4 tsp Salt
30g Butter
3/4 cup Milk
1/2 cup Water (approx)
Heat the oven to about 220 degrees Celsius.
Mix the flour, sugar and salt together in a large bowl and then rub the butter in with your fingertips.
Make a well in the centre of the mixture, then add the milk and almost all of the water. Mix the water and milk through the mixture until you have a sticky, soft dough. If you think it needs it add the extra water, otherwise don’t worry about it.
Knead the dough with your hands on a floured surface until it’s smooth – the trick is to not knead it too much, because that will stop it from rising a lot.
Press the dough out to about 2cm thickness and cut out your scones and put them in a deep pan on baking paper, just touching. Putting them in a deep pan also helps them to rise well.
Brush them with milk and put them in the oven for about 15 mins, or until they’re browned. They should sound hollow when you tap on them.
Spread with jam and cream and enjoy!
This recipe has been adapted slightly from ‘The Country Table’ which is my favourite cookbook at the moment.


With the kids being on their ‘Pear Diet’ I have been trying new things, pushing my boundaries of comfort in the kitchen. My latest challenge was Marshmallows! This recipe is from the Friendly Food Recipe Book that accompanies the Elimination Diet. It’s Delicious and pretty simple.

50g (1/3 Cup) Powdered Gelatine
250ml (1 cup) Cold Water
880g (4 cups) Sugar – I used Castor Sugar
500ml (2 cups) Boiling Water
125g (1 cup) pure Icing Sugar
60g (1/2 cup) Maize Cornflour

Putting it all together:
Sprinkle the Gelatine over the cold water and set aside.

Put the sugar and boiling water in a large saucepan. Stir over low heat until the sugar dissolves. Add the gelatine mixture. Stir Until well combined and dissolved. Boil steadily without a lid for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool until lukewarm.

Pour the mixture into the large bowl of an electric mixer and beat on high speed until white and thick. Pour into two wet 20cm square deep cake tins. Refrigerate overnight.

Sift the icing sugar and cornflour together into a bowl. Cut the marshmallow into squares using a large wet knife. Remove from the tins and toss them in the icing sugar and cornflour mixture until they’re well coated. You can then store them in layers, separating them with baking paper so they don’t stick together.


Easy Shortbread Biscuits

Shortbread is something I have always been a little bit scared of making, I’ve made it before (a few years ago) and it was not a success. This year though I figured I would give it another go. I’m so pleased I did, as it is so yummy and worked out just as I remember having as a kid, all buttery goodness. I used a recipe from ‘The Country Table’, but adapted the method a little bit, as I’m lazy like that!

250 Butter, Softened
1/3 Cup Caster Sugar
1 Tablespoon Water
2 Cups Plain Flour
1/2 Cup Rice Flour
1 Dessert Spoon Icing Sugar

Throw it all in the Food Processor, whizz it around until it’s all combined. Pull it out, either roll it out on a floured bench or press out with your hands. I used Christmas Shape cutters to make them all Christmasy and cut out the shapes. You can make them thick or thin (just vary your cooking time). Bake in the oven on greased trays for 30-40mins. Cool them on the tray. Dust with Icing Sugar before serving.

They were a big hit at the class party, and made a nice option from chips and lollies that were on offer. The rest of the batch will go in for the Presentation Night Supper, as the leftovers will send me up a dress size.

A Spot of Yabbying

In between Header stops and starts, when the Barley has been too green or all our storage is full up Muddy Hubby threw some Yabby Nets in one of our Dams. Lo and Behold we caught some yabbies! It’s been a few years since I’ve been yabbying. The Muddy Kids and I helped our British worker (Hello Laura) pull them up and we managed to catch 23 big ones! We put the babies and the teenagers back in the Dam and bought the rest back to the house.

We found a Mummy Yabby who had hundreds of Eggs she was holding in her tail, so we put her back in the Dam to ensure we’ll get some yabbies in the coming years! We have always cooked yabbies by just boiling them in water. This time though we tried something different, Thanks to my lovely neighbour.

We put them in a pot in the freezer to sedate them (there will be some escapees in the freezer, but they’re easy to collect once sedated), we then pulled them out and chopped off their heads before we pulled off their their tails and claws. We rinsed the claws and tails, then popped them in a garlic, butter and parsley marinade before cooking them on the BBQ. YUMMO! They are just like crabs, so when they turn orange they’re cooked. It was a heap of fun and something different for someone from the UK to experience.

That’s the way the Mulberry Crumbles

It’s that time of year again in our house where the fingers are almost constantly stained purple, there are big purple grins on everyone’s faces and if the kids disappear in the house yard there is one place to find them – at the Mulberry Tree. The Muddy Kids each have their own bucket and collect as many as they can, along with as many as they can squeeze in their mouth.
They got a good first haul on the weekend and after chopping off all the stems I made them into a Mulberry Crumble. It is quick, easy and yummy, all winning things in our house. Sadly we were out of ice cream so served it with a dollop of cream, it was still tasty but not quite the same.
To make the crumble it’s easy:
I spread the Mulberries in the cake tin, you can sprinkle with Castor Sugar if you like.
For the Crumble Topping I used 1/2 Cup Plain Flour, 1/2 Cup Self-Raising Flour, 1 Cup Brown Sugar and between 150-200g Butter. I whizzed it altogether and then spread it on top.
 Normally I would crumble it altogether with my fingers, but I was in a hurry so the food processor on my stick blender was quicker.
Pop it in the oven for about 25-30 mins and serve hot with vanilla ice cream (or cream)


I ate them and I liked it….

After all the trouble the pigs gave us I was a little sad to say goodbye to them. The morning we had to send them to the abattoir I was dressed and ready for work when Muddy Hubby said he needed a hand, so like any good wife I whacked on my farm boots and headed down to the yards. After almost an hour of trying to hunt them up the race and failing we had resorted to running them into the drenching race and Muddy Hubby lifting each one individually onto the crate on the back of the ute.
In my head this was a good idea, in reality it was a nightmare. I will never ever forget the blood-curdling squeal these pigs gave off as Muddy Hubby caught each one and slowly inch by inch lifted them up (we had been feeding them up well, so they were no light weights). I was useless (happy to admit it), I tried to get Leopard’s foot unstuck when it got stuck but each time he turned his head to me I’d squeal and pull my hand away, terrified of having him bite my hand off (you’ll remember I had nightmares about these pigs so that didn’t help the situation). Eventually they were safely ensconced on the back of the ute and the Muddy Kids came and said their goodbyes.
This week they’ve been returned to us……packaged in boxes! Well, the pork has been, the ham and bacon should be arriving by the end of the week. So what to do with this much pork landing in your kitchen……Roast Pork of course, followed with a serve of Sweet and Sour Pork Stir Fry (Recipe Below). I am cracking out the recipe books to diversify my pork cooking – any suggestions welcome!

500g Pork fillet chopped into bite-size pieces
3 teaspoons soy sauce
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons tomato sauce
1/3 cup vinegar
1 tablespoon cornflour
3 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 cup fresh pineapple, chopped (I used tinned)
1 red capsicum, chopped (I used green because that’s what was in the fridge)
1 large onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped

Place the pork in a non-metallic bowl, add soy sauce and toss through so all the pork pieces are coated, set aside.

In a medium saucepan over low to medium heat, whisk together the sugar, tomato sauce, vinegar and cornflour and allow to simmer.

Meanwhile bring a Wok or large non-stick frying pan to a high heat, then add 2 teaspoons of oil. Swirl the oil around so the bottom is coated. Toss the pineapple, capsicum and onion and stir-fry for about 4 mins until they begin to caramelise. Add the warm sauce and remove from the wok and set aside.

Add another teaspoon of oil to the wok and then the pork and cook until the pork is browned and just cooked through (about 8 mins).

Add the sauce and vegetables, allow to come to a simmer then remove from the heat and serve immediately with rice.

This is a recipe from Kidspot, and they know their stuff as this was a huge hit with the Muddy Kids, barely a spoonful left in their bowls.

Constructing a Truck Cake for Muddy Bubby

I mentioned on Friday I was going to make a proper birthday cake for Muddy Bubby to appease my mother guilt. I had ummed and ahhed about just what to make. The wonderful Jo at Country Life Experiment and her talented Country Boy had made their two year old a fantastic truck cake for his birthday. So using this as my starting point I made a truck based around our truck (see photo below).
It was really pretty simple to construct, because I made two trailers I needed 4 loaf cakes. I made a butter cake and froze them, so they were easier to cut to shape. Then I crumb iced it, before putting on the final coat of icing and the decorations, including two trailers with jellybeans.
Overall I was pretty happy with it, and I think Muddy Bubby and Muddy Hubby were too! The hardest part was definitely the gel icing for writing and drawing. No matter how hard I try I just can’t get it to come out without blobs in it!


Thank You Posie Patchwork!

A little while ago now I was lucky enough to win Posie Patchwork’s comp where the prize was Louise Fulton Keats latest Recipe/Story Book titled ‘The Best Ever Birthday’. I had been eyeing this off for a while so was VERY excited to be a prize winner. I promised Posie that the first recipe I would make would be the Butter Cake, and it’s taken me a while (thank you to the thermostat in the Oven going) but this week I did it! I used the Basic Butter Cake Recipe to make the cake for the Muddy Puzzler’s Birthday Cake. As promised by Posie, it was delicious, just like my Grandma used to make, all moist and buttery goodness.

It was the perfect cake to use for the Butterfly chosen by my Muddy Puzzler and by the reactions they loved it!

A Huge Thank You to Posie, the book is already a big hit, we read the story all the time and the Muddy Kids have picked out what’s next to make.

Smoked Paprika Chicken and Lemon Bake

I struggle in the kitchen, I tend to get into a rut and stick to what I know Muddy Hubby and the kids will eat. Every so often though I am handed a recipe that I think ‘that will work in our house’ and I give it a go. Mostly it’s my lovely neighbour over the back paddock handing me a recipe she’s already test drove with her two cherubs, and occasionally it’s a find on blogs or the net.

This particular one was handed over the back paddock (Thank You Neighbour). It is super easy and there’s never much left on the plate.

1.5kg chicken pieces
1 lemon sliced
1 cup black olives*
2 chorizo sausages sliced
4 cloves garlic
1 cup chicken stock
50g unsalted butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika**
sea salt and cracked black pepper

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Place the chicken, lemon, olives, chorizo, garlic, stock and butter in a baking dish and sprinkle with the paprika, salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.

Only photo I have before it went into the oven. By the time it comes out it’s a rush to the table to keep everyone happy!

I serve it up with rice and steamed greens, my neighbour serves it up with cous cous and steamed greens, whatever takes your fancy!

*I am the only one in my family who eats olives so I left them out rather than have to pick them out of everyone’s meals
**I couldn’t get smoked paprika in town, so substituted paprika, still very tasty

Chicken, Leek and Bacon Pot Pie

The weather has turned cold, the blustery windy cold, where the sun is still shining but the wind dries out your skin and lips and you have rosy red cheeks and feel chilled to the bone. For me this means comfort food, warm hearty meals that fill you up and warm you from the inside out.

My favourite Pie to make at the moment is Chicken Leek and Bacon Pot Pies. My friend and neighbour gave me this recipe after we had dinner there last winter and it has become a regular in our household, especially in cold weather.

40g Unsalted Butter
1 tbs Olive Oil
3 Leeks (pale part only), thinly sliced
4 bacon rashers, rind removed, chopped
800g chicken thigh fillets, cut into 2cm pieces
1tbs plain flour
Pinch of nutmeg
200ml chicken stock
300ml light sour cream or creme fraiche
2 tbs chopped flat leaf parsley
2 tbs lemon juice
4 sheets frozen puff pastry
1 egg, lightly beaten

The Filling:
Heat the butter and oil in a pan over low heat. Add the leek, bacon and chicken and cook, stirring for 6-8 minutes until the leek is soft and the chicken is almost cooked. Stir in the flour and nutmeg and cook for 1-2 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. Stir in the stock, increase heat to medium and bring to the boil. Season, then remove from the heat and stir in the sour cream, lemon juice and parsley. Cool completely.

Putting It Together:
Preheat the Oven to 200 degrees Celsius
Cut two 1cm  strips from the side of each pastry sheet. Set aside. Cut pie lids from the remaining pastry, 1 cm wider than the top of the 300ml pie dishes or ramekins. Divide chicken mixture among dishes. Press pastry strips around the rim of each dish to make a ‘collar’ and brush with some of the egg. Carefully top with pie lids, press firmly into the collar to seal, then trim edges if necessary. Make 2 cuts in each pie top, then brush with remaining egg. Bake the pies for 20 mins or until puffed and golden.


* I used small ramekins for the kid’s and my pies and used bigger bowls for the men’s pies. When I’ve used them for dinner parties I’ve made them in small ramekins and served them up with green veggies.
* As there is lots of sauce I often throw in veggies like broccoli, peas or corn, before throwing them in the oven.

What’s your favourite winter warmer?