Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Pineapple in the Fondue

Fondue & Table Top Cookbook, Marina Wilson 1974 Australian Universities Press

“Take about half a dozen good friends prepared to dine informally together in leisurely fashion, seat them round a table on which stands a communal cooking pot half-full of gently simmering cheese-and-wine sauce, equip them with crusty cubes of French bread skewered on forks with which they will scoop up delicious mouthfuls of the ambrosial mixture.
Now add a bowl or two of French-dressed green salad to the table and a convivial bottle or two of the same dry white wine you used to make the sauce, and what have you got? Right first time! A fondue party” Marina Wilson.
Basic Fondue

“. . . the traditional cheese fondue, devised, it is said, by thrifty Swiss villagers as a means of utilising cheese grown hard with age by melting it with wine.”
Serves 4; 20 minutes cooking time

1 clove garlic; 2 tspn lemon juice; 3 cups (250g) gruyere cheese, grated; ¼ cup kirsch; ¼ tspn nutmeg; 1 cup hock or Riesling; 2 cups (200g)Swiss cheese, grated; 1 tspn cornflour; ¼ tspn pepper; ¼ tspn paprika
Rub the fondue pot with a garlic clove and then combine the hock or Riesling with the lemon juice and heat slowly. Add the cheese slowly to this mixture and continue stirring until it is boiling slowly. Blend the cornflour with the kirsch and stir this mixture into the cheese. Add the pepper, nutmeg and paprika and cook over a low heat for 3-5 minutes. Serve with French bread.

Rob looks like he's enjoying himself - or perhaps he was being polite!

Chocolate Fondue
Serves 4-6; 10 minutes cooking time.
8oz dark chocolate; ½ cup sugar; 1 cup cream; 3 tblspn Tia Maria; ¼ tspn salt; marshmallows
Melt the chocolate over a low heat, then add the cream, sugar and salt and blend thoroughly. Stir in Tia Maria and serve with marshmallows.

As you can see we used Kahlua instead of Tia Maria (because that was what I had in the cupboard) . . . I'm not sure I'll let Ella pour in the Kahlua next time . . . but it certainly was delicious! Anne

Friday, 26 December 2014

Pineapple and leftover Christmas ham

New Idea’s Chinese Cookbook, 194 Recipes from Prawn Toast to Peking Duck, Melbourne 1970s

Sweet and Sour Ham Balls
500g cooked ham; 1 egg; 1 small onion, coarsely chopped; ¼ small green pepper, coarsely chopped; 2 tblspn oil
Sauce: 1 small can pineapple cubes; 2 tblspn vinegar; 1 tblspn brown sugar; 2 tblspn cornflour; 1 tspn mustard powder; ½ tspn salt; 250ml (1 cup) water; ¾ small green pepper, cut in 1 cm squares; 6 shallots, thinly sliced
This dish is prepared very quickly with a blender.
Cut ham into cubes and feed on to the revolving blades off a blender, through the hole in the lid. Continue until blender is a third full of finely minced ham then transfer to a mixing bowl. Continue until all ham is minced.
Place egg, coarsely chopped onion and green pepper in blender and mix until very finely chopped.
Add egg mixture to ham and mix well. Shape and roll ham mixture into 12 balls in cold floured hands. Chill in refrigerator to firm and then reshape into neat balls.
Heat oil in a heavy frying pan or wok and fry ham balls until browned on all sides, turning occasionally. Drain well and keep hot.
Meanwhile, mix the drained pineapple juice, half the pineapple cubes, vinegar, sugar, cornflour, mustard and salt together in the blender for 15 seconds.
Pour water into frying pan and stir over heat to dissolve pan sediments. Add mixture from blender and bring to the boil, stirring continuously.
Blanch green pepper squares and julienne carrots in boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Drain well.
Add blanched green pepper and carrot and remaining pineapple cubes to sauce and heat through.
To serve, pour sweet and sour sauce over ham balls and sprinkle shallots on top. Delicious served with boiled rice.
Serves 3-4 as a main course, 6 Chinese style.

Monday, 22 December 2014

Wishing you all pineapples for Christmas!

In a truly inspired moment Ella created this fabulous pineapple with chocolates, a champagne bottle and green tissue paper! Thank you Ella!!! Love it, but some of the chocolates have already disappeared . . .
The Australian Women’s Weekly Picture Cookery: A pictorial guide to home cooking, Sydney c1950

Christmas Trifle

6 sponge cakes; raspberry jam; 1 glass of sherry; 6 rounds of pineapple; 300ml custard; cream; angelica; almonds

Spread the sponge cakes with jam and cut them into cubes. Put these into 6 individual glasses and pour a little sherry over each. Shred the pineapple rings and out them on the cake. Cover with a layer of custard, then top with whipped cream, some pieces of angelica and a few shredded almonds.

100 Delicious Biscuits and Slices, The Australian Women’s Weekly 1972

White Christmas

225g solid white vegetable shortening; 3 cups rice bubbles; 1 cup coconut; ¾ cup icing sugar; 1 cup full-cream milk powder; 25g mixed peel; 25g preserved ginger; 25 glacé apricots; 25g glacé pineapple; ¼ cup sultanas; 25g glacé cherries

Melt chopped white vegetable shortening over gentle heat. Combine rice bubbles, coconut, sifted icing sugar, powdered milk and chopped fruits; mix well. Add melted shortening and mix thoroughly.

Press mixture into lightly greased and paper-lined 18cm X 28cm lamington tin. Refrigerate until firm, cut into bars for serving.


Party Prescriptions, compiled for your pleasure. All proceeds 1st Red Hill Scout Group Building Fund, Canberra 1963 
Non-alcoholic Drinks and Punches: Fruit Punch
1 ½ cups water; 1 ½ cups sugar; 600ml cold strained tea; 2 litres chilled water; juice of 6 lemons; juice of 6 oranges; 600ml grated pineapple
To serve: Boil sugar and water for 10 minutes. Cool and add other ingredients. Allow to stand for one hour. Add the cold water. Dip the rims of glasses in a little orange or lemon juice, then in crystal sugar to give frosted appearance. Serve punch in glasses with chipped ice and cherry on top.

Betty Crocker’s Cook Book for Boys and Girls, 1957

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Christmas cakes with pineapple

The Australian All Colour Cook Book, Good Housekeeping Institute 1989

Almond Sponge Christmas Cake with glace fruit
“For those who do not like the traditional rich fruit cake at Christmas, this cake is the perfect alternative. The cake itself is light and moist, and the decoration looks as festive as a traditional snow scene, or any other design using marzipan and royal icing.
The decoration of glacé cherries, almonds and candied angelica  gives a Christmassy look, but you can vary this according to taste; at Christmas-time, many stores and delicatessens stock other glacé fruit such as apricots and pineapples.”
Serves 8 – 10
225g butter or margarine; 225g caster sugar; 4 eggs, beaten; 125g self-raising flour, sifted with a pinch of salt; 100g ground almonds; 225g can pineapple slices; about 30ml warm water; 30ml apricot jam; 50g glacé cherries; 50g blanched almonds; 25-40g candied angelica; red and green ribbon, to decorate
1 Prepare the cake tin. Grease and base line a deep 20.5cm loose-bottomed round cake tin. Tie a double thickness of brown paper around the outside of the tin, to come about 5cm above the rim.
2 Put the butter and sugar in a large bowl and beat until light and fluffy. Add the eggs a little at a time and beat until thoroughly combined. Add a little of the flour with the last addition of the egg, to prevent curdling, then beat in the ground almonds and the remaining flour.
3 Drain the pineapple slices and chop roughly. Dry thoroughly with absorbent kitchen paper. Fold into the cake mixture, then add enough warm water to give a soft dropping consistency. Spoon the mixture into the prepared cake tin and level the surface.
4 Bake the cake in the oven at 170°C mark 3 for 1 ½ hours or until cooked through, covering the top with a double thickness of greaseproof paper after 1 hour’s cooking time, if necessary to prevent over-browning. To test if the cake is cooked, insert a warmed fine skewer in the centre – it should come out clean.
5 Leave the cake to settle in the tin for 5 – 10 minutes, then remove and stand on a wire rack.
6 Make the decoration for the top off the cake while cake is still warm. Cut the glacé cherries in half. Split the blanched almonds in half lengthways. Cut the angelica into diamond shapes.
7 Warm half of the jam until melted, then sieve and brush over the top of the warm cake. Press the cherries, nuts and angelica on top of the cake in a decorative design (as in the photograph or use your own design). Melt and sieve the remaining jam, then brush over the design.
8 To serve, tie red and green ribbon around the cake to give it a festive look. Store the cake in an airtight tin for up to 2 weeks.
Menu suggestion: This cake is equally good served at teatime or with morning coffee.

During random cake testing in Gloucester NSW this cake was highly recommended!

Margaret Fulton Cookbook Sydney 1979 (first published 1968)

Rich Christmas Cake
“Traditional Christmas Cooking: What would Christmas be without a rich spicy fruit cake or a pudding fairly bursting at the seams with plump fruits and presented with great pomp and ceremony?
Make the rich cake and pudding, also the mincemeat for the tarts, well ahead to give them time to mature and develop richness for Christmas day.”
Fruit: 350g raisins; 350g sultanas; 100g mixed peel; 100g glacé cherries; 50g glacé apricots; 50g glacé pineapple; 3 tblspn brandy or rum; 3 tblspn sherry
Cake mixture: 225g butter; 1 ¼ cups brown sugar; grated rind of 1 lemon; 1 tblspn golden syrup; 2 tblspn marmalade; 5 eggs; 2 ½ cups plain flour; 1 tspn mixed spice; 1 tspn ground cinnamon; ¼ tspn salt; 100g blanched almonds; extra brandy
First prepare fruit: Wash raisins and sultanas separately and dry thoroughly. Chop raisins. Put into bowl with finely chopped peel. Cut cherries, apricots and pineapple into small dice, add to fruit in bowl. Sprinkle with brandy (or rum) and sherry. Leave overnight.
Next day: Beat butter and brown sugar with lemon rind until light and creamy. Add golden syrup and marmalade. Beat well. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each. Add 1 tablespoon flour with last egg. Sift together flour, spices and salt and stir into creamed mixture alternately with fruit and chopped almonds.
Spoon mixture into an 20cm square ort round tin lined with 2 thicknesses each of brown and greased greaseproof paper. Arrange extra almond on top. Bake in a slow oven (150°C) for about 4 hours or until cooked. Remove from oven and immediately sprinkle with about 1 tablespoon extra brandy.
Remove cake from tin, leaving paper on cake. Wrap in tea towel and leave until cool.

To ice cake: If cake is to be iced, do not arrange almonds on top. Brush top of cake with slightly beaten egg white. On a board dusted with icing sugar roll out Almond Paste to cover top, put on cake and press gently with rolling pin. Leave several hours or overnight. Make Fondant icing and roll out to fit top of cake. Brush Almond Paste with egg white, put Fondant Icing on top. Decorate and put cake frill around sides.
Almond Paste This quantity will cover top and sides of one20 cm cake, or the tops only of two cakes.
450g icing sugar; 225g ground almonds or marzipan meal; juice of ½ lemon; 1 egg yolk; 2 tblspn sherry; few drops almond essence (optional)
Sift icing sugar, combine with ground almonds or marzipan meal. Mix together lemon juice, sherry and egg yolk. Mix into icing sugar nearly all at once to form a paste which can be rolled out. If mixture is too dry, add a little more sherry.
Fondant Icing
450g icing sugar; 50g liquid glucose; 1 egg white; flavouring
Sift icing sugar, make a well in the centre and add glucose, egg white and flavouring. Beat. Drawing the icing sugar into the centre, until the mass is a stiff paste. Turn on to a board lightly dusted with icing sugar and knead into a paste. Use to cover top and sides of one cake, or tops only of two.

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Pina Colada - second attempt

Since my disappointing first attempt at Pine Coladas I’ve been keen to have another shot – and this time they were great! I used coconut milk instead of coconut cream. Anne.

3 tblspns light rum, 3 teaspoons coconut milk, 3 tblspns crushed pineapple

Put all of the ingredients into a blender with two cups of crushed ice. Blend until the drink is a thick, creamy consistency. Serve.

Thank you Rupert Holmes 1979!

Friday, 5 December 2014

Pineapple Picnics

Good Housekeeping’s Sandwiches and Picnic Meals, 1955 London

Buffet parties: Checkerboard sandwiches
Remove all the crusts from a brown sandwich loaf and a white one. Cut both loaves in 2cm slices and spread each slice with a soft tasty filling. Now rearrange the loaves by laying one slice of white on one slice of brown and continue putting the pieces alternately together until the loaf is square.
Make a second “loaf” with the other pieces. Put the loaves in a cold place to harden, then cut out in 2cm slices. Spread one side with filling and stick the pieces together so that a brown piece is next to a white piece. Put in a cold p[lace to become firm then cut into slices. These sandwiches, of course, need no further filling.

Fillings for Sandwiches: Shrimp, celery, shredded pineapple and mayonnaise.

Welsh Rarebit and Pineapple Layer Sandwich
3 slices of bread; 100g grated cheese; made mustard; 30g melted butter; 1 tblspn milk; seasoning; 2 slices of pineapple; tomato ketchup
Toast the bread and keep hot. Put the cheese, mustard, melted butter, milk and seasoning into a basin and mix well, spread the mixture over the toast, and grill 2 of the slices till golden brown. Place the 2 slices of pineapple on the remaining slice and grill. Arrange the slices on top of each other, finishing with the pineapple slices on top. Decorate with a little tomato ketchup in the centre of each pineapple slice.
Fried Sandwiches
Fried bread sandwiches make a delightful change, and are just as easy to prepare.
Sandwich frankfurters between fried bread, top with sliced pineapple, and garnish with a gherkin fan.

Individual Jelly Sponges
Make 900ml of jelly and allow it to cool but not set. Arrange 2 Savoy fingers down each side of 6 waxed picnic cartons, cover them with jelly and put them in a cool place. When set, arrange pieces of pineapple on them, and cover with more jelly. Allow to set very firmly before packing.