Sun-dried tomato tapenade and a wee trip to Syd-er-ney


I get so excited when I find recipes and I have grown all, or most, of the ingredients.  Today’s recipe fits into that category. The only ingredient that didn’t come out of my garden was the anchovy fillets.

As my dear vegetarian friend, Colette, was coming to dinner that night, I divided the tapenade into two bowls and only put anchovies in one.  I think the anchovies gave the tapenade more depth of flavour but, if you are vegetarian or object to anchovies, it still tastes lovely without them.  If you are omitting the anchovies, taste the tapenade before serving as you may wish to add a little salt.

This recipe comes from Party Dips by Sally Sampson.  It is a beauty, even if you have to buy the ingredients.

  • 1 cup loosely packed sun-dried tomatoes
  • ½ cup boiling water
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • ¼ cup packed fresh basil leaves
  • ¼ cup packed fresh parsley leaves
  • 2 tbs* capers, drained
  • 4 oil-packed anchovy fillets
  • 1 tbs* olive oil

*These are 15mil tablespoons

  1. Put the tomatoes into a heatproof bowl.  Pour the boiling water over them to let soften for 30 minutes.
  2. Transfer the tomatoes and soaking water into a food processor and pulse until well chopped.
  3. Return the mixture to the bowl.
  4. Chop the garlic and herbs, add to the bowl.
  5. Add the capers, olive oil and anchovy fillets and mix well.
  6. Transfer to a serving bowl.

We are off to Sydney tomorrow for a week, therefore, I won’t be posting for a while. When I return, there will be a Rose of the Week and some recipes from this month’s feature cookbook, The New Book of Middle Eastern Food by Claudia Roden, so stay tuned.

Almond and Cumquat Tart


I have been a fan of Maggie Beer for a long, long time.  She started out rather modestly in the Barossa Valley creating recipes to use produce she had at hand.  I have always loved that concept.  Why go to the supermarket and buy something that has come halfway around the world when there is perfectly good food growing close by? Continue reading

In My Kitchen – April 2014

In my kitchen:

Are three passionfruit.  These are my first ever passionfruit and I am very excited.  When we first named our block Passion Fruit Garden we would regularly get asked whether we grew passionfruit.  “The name is Passion Fruit not passionfruit” I would explain but after a while I noticed the distinction was lost on a lot of people so, to keep it simple,  I would indicate a future intention to grow passionfruit.   Then a reader (Debra) offered me some passionfruit cuttings.  I started out with 6 cuttings which eventually produced two viable plants both of which are now huge and producing a moderate amount of fruit.  I am anticipating great things next year. 007copy1

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Baked chicken drumstick Jamoncitos & dried figs with potato galette


I got the most delightful email from a reader the other day (Clare, I hope you don’t mind me quoting you.)  Clare’s email came just at a time when I was pondering this blog.  Clearly, the recipes I post represent the type of food I like and associate with.  Of late, I have been wondering whether there is anyone out there who has similar tastes to me and enjoys a similar style of food.  Well, it appears Clare does :)  Here is an excerpt from Clare’s email: Continue reading

See … People do read blogs


The other day I was reading a post by John, from The Bartolini Kitchens, and the penny dropped.

John mentioned that he loved to make jam but wasn’t too keen on eating jam and toast.  I smiled as I read that because I am the same.  I can’t possibly throw out excess fruit so I make preserves and then we end up with jars and jars of jam that take us years to consume.  My melon, lemon and ginger jam I made this time last year comes to mind.  It tastes great but we have probably only eaten two jars in one year.

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