Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Butternut Soup for the soul

Good for summer or winter as a nice pick me up.


2 medium butternuts
2 medium onions
2 garlic cloves
a glug of olive oil
chicken or vegetable liquid stock or stock cubes/powder
Boiling water

Peel and cube the butternut and place in a large oven roasting pan.
Peel and dice the onion and mix in with the butternut.
Peel the 2 garlic cloves and place whole in amongst the butternut and onion.
Drizzle a bit of olive oil or sun flower oil over the butternut mix and place in the middle of the oven to roast at 190 celcius
Leave to roast for approx. 40 min to an hour or more if needed- checking more frequently near the end and stir a little so browning occurs all around.
Take out when nicely browned
Put the Butternut and liquid stock (or boiling water and stock cubes/powder) in a blender in batches and blend until smooth.
Keep repeating the above step until all is done
Put into a medium pot
Add more stock or boiling water until you have the desired thickness.Make sure if doesn't get to salty with to much stock then rather just add boiling water at the end.
Season with a little salt and pepper to taste
Pour in a little cream - roughly 50 - 100ml and stir.
Keep warm on a very low heat and stir frequently.

Spoon into bowls and pour a little cream on top in a swirling pattern
Add roasted pumpkin seeds as a garnish if desired

Serve with Cripsy fresh bread or toast

Enjoy :) Betty Bake

Sunday, September 27, 2009

POTATO BAKE :) the humble potatoe

Potato is my favorite vegetable! Butternut comes a close second, but potatoe smothered in butter cooked in all sorts of ways there is no beating it! Roast potato, baked potato, mashed potato, potato salad, potato bake, potato chips... potato, potato, potato :)

6 to 8 medium potatoes
half a tub (125ml) cream
half a medium onion (very thinly sliced in half rings)
6 button mushrooms
butter (roughly 5 tablespoons)
garlic & herb spice
half a round of feta
a little bit of cheddar or parmesan


Peel and very thinly slice the potatoes.
Butter the bottom of an oven proof dish and line the dish with some of the potato until you have just covered the base.

Dot the layer of potatoes with small blobs of butter and then add some very thinly sliced onion pieces.
Sprinkle with garlic & herb spice and some sliced mushrooms.
Layer with another layer of potatoes until all is covered over and repeat the butter, onion, spices, mushroom layers.
Keep layering until you finish up with potatoes.
On the top layer add blobs of butter, some garlic & herb spice and then crumble parmesan cheese and grated parmesan or cheddar.
Pour cream over the whole dish and season well with salt and garlic & herb spice.

Place in the oven at 190 degrees celcius and bake until soft in the middle (test with a knife inserted into it) and crispy and golden on the top.

:) enjoy
Goes nicely with a garden salad and meat of your choice.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

chicken noodle sproodle soup


2 x medium onions (roughly chopped)
3 or 4 x celery stalks/sticks with leaves
4 x chicken thighs (i use woolworths free range/hormone free)
5 x medium/large carrots - peeled and chopped
half a small butternut - peeled and cubed
1 garlic clove (optional)
3 fresh basil leaves
chicken liquid stock or stock cubes/powder
10 small cherry tomatoes (cut in half)
100g noodles
salt and pepper to taste

Place the chopped onions in a large pot and fry in some olive oil until light brown. season with a little salt. Add the chopped celery and fry until soft. Now season the chicken with salt &  pepper all over the skin of the thigh and place in the pot, skin side facing down. Fry until brown. Then turn chicken over and brown the underneath.Fill the pot up with cold water and add the peeled and chopped carrots, garlic and basil. Bring the water to a boil. turn down the temp and leave to boil slowly for roughly 15 - 20 min. Add the butternut and chicken stock and season to taste. Carefully take the chicken out and discard the skin and bones and break up the meat and return it to the pot. Add the cherry tomatoes and noodles. Simmer the soup for 10 min and season with more stock and salt until you reach the desired flavor. You can boil the soup for longer to make the flavor stronger and to let some of the water evaporate. Simmer for upto 40 min.

Serve with toast in nice big bowls

:) Betty Bake

Sunday, September 20, 2009



so it isn't only weekend  food but anyday of the week food - pasta is one of those great staples that you can dish into a bowl and just spoon into your mouth while watching a movie or reading a book - you don't have to think about it - it just tastes good :)

1 x packet of pasta - preferably the spaghetti or tagliatelle kind- i used King Soba Brown Rice noodles but regular noodles will do too
1 x medium butternut
1 x tub(250ml) cream
1 x round of feta
1 x medium onion roughly diced
1 or 2 cloves fresh garlic peeled (kept whole)
1 x handful of walnuts or cashew nuts
some olive oil


1) Peel and dice the butternut into medium to small cubes then put in a roasting pan with diced onion and the garlic and drizze with olive oil.
2) Roast in the oven at 190 degrees celcius until soft and and lightly browned.
3) Bring a large pot of water to the boil and cook your pasta according to the packets instructions.
4) In a large frying pan or pot place the roasted butternut and onion, add the tub of cream and bring to a simmer.

5) Crumble in half the feta and season with salt.
6) Once the pasta is boiled rinse and mix in with the butternut cream mixture and crumble feta on top and stir on most of the nuts.

Dish into bowls and sprinkle a few extra nuts on top


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

the actual recipe for the creme brulee

One of my all time favorite desserts is creme brulee :) it makes me happy just thinking about it!!

so i defineatly need to put the recipe on this blog

1 tub/cup (250ml) cream
1 cup (250ml) milk (full cream)

4 eggs (3 whole and 1 egg yolk)
60 ml (4 tablespoons) sugar or xylitol
2 teaspoons vanilla ess or 1 vanilla pod

1) in a small saucepan put the milk, cream and vanilla ess or pod and slowly bring to the boil - just before it boils over is bubbling remove from stove top.
2) in a bowl/jug mix together the 3 whole eggs and 1 egg yolk and the xylitol/sugar.
3) pour the boiled milk/cream into the egg mixture while stirring quickly the entire time
4) pour into ramekins or tea cups.
5) place the cups in an oven proof dish with boiling water half way up the outsides of the cups/ramekins and place in the oven of 160 degrees celcuis
6) bake for 15 - 20 min and remove from oven when there is a set layer on top of the mixture when you tilt  the custard -it ripples or moves abit from underneath the milk skin

let it cool then place in the fridge for a minimum of 2-3 hours
they can be kept in the fridge covered for 3 or 4 days

take out and sprinkle castor sugar on top and caramelise with a chefs blow torch or put inder the grill of the oven but watch CAREFULLY as it will burn very easily

Monday, September 14, 2009

my list of cooking and wants

i really need to write more often :)

so what have i been cooking lately you may ask and what has been on my mind? well.....

1) i made homemade burgers last night with free-range beef (hormone free)
2) i've made homemade chicken and vegetable soup during the week and thinking about making it again tonight
3) i also made cream brulee with xylitol inplace of sugar
4) i made homemade vegetable crips again and tried some different flavours- butternut, beetroot, carrot and potatoe
5) i'm longing to bake cookies that are gluten free and sugar free but taste good - busy trying out recipes. When i find one that works i'll be sure to post it
6) i really want a juicer to start juicing my own healthy veggie and fruit drinks - but sadly they cost a fortune
7) i also want a water filter for my tap or an R.O (reverse osmosis) water unit to make my water more safe for drinking.

:) betty bake

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

candles and cake and happy happy

Tuesday and it's my brothers Birthday :) yay !! So I didn't have to cook supper tonight as my mom did it for all us family for my bro's Birthday - YAY for a night off of cooking! cause as much as i enjoy it, it's nice to take a break and taste other people's creations and get inspired by other people's flavour/s :) I'm sure everyone enjoys some time off from things they do, even if they love what they do - stepping back and taking a look most times brings new perpective and ideas.

so thanks mom and family!

Betty Bake

Monday, September 7, 2009

camping and the weekend away

Well it wasn't exactly camping - more like a chalet on the Goukou river but it was braaing. Located on an organic veggie farm we were allowed to pick vegetables of our choice for ourselves to braai or cook with. Fresh veggies are so delicious and i think that we don't know what we are missing having bought store bought vegatables most of our lives - they are just not as tasty and good. My husband and daughter just loved them (me too) and the flavours so diverse and immense it has urged me to plant more vegetables of my own. (i occasionally grow my own baby tomatoes). Looking for easy vegatables to grow i have opted for peas, broccoli, potaoes, sweet potaoes and .... mmmm maybe green beans. Lets hope they grow easily enough.

so from those really cool and delicious vegetables on the farm i made veggie parcels out of foil - inside them i  put the veggie combos of my choice with olive oil, salt and pepper and herbs :)
Put on the hot coals of the braai and turn often - enjoy with your meat of choice on the braai.
And of course don't forget a good salad and a glass of wine for the hubby :)