Herbs & German Food
During the first two or so years here on our seachange I shopped at a particular supermarket. It had shopper rewards and I got a flourescent lantern that we still use today when we have black outs, in place of the old fashioned kerosene light that my mother used in the same circumstances. I think I got a watch and possibly men's perfume under the same scheme before they moved away from that. I was surprised at the time, that they still offered store accounts. I didn't want to go down that track again. One little bug bear, is that often I was asked "put it on the plastic" for eftpos. Anyway.
Often I got my meal plan ready and the items weren't there on the day that I wanted them. I am a shop once a fortnight person mostly, so this didn't suit me. I worked out the items that were always there, and worked my meals around that. The constants were chicken mince, rookwurst, things like that. So we had new meals to us, chicken lasagne, chicken balls with plum sauce, & Bigos with mashed potato. I found I was ordering a lot of herbs from my online vegetable shop. So in the end we found two parts of a 44 gallon drum behind our woodshed. Hubby put them on the paved area, filled them with soil and we planted sage, oregano and thyme in them. We also planted some other herbs I think.
Eventually we made our own plum sauce to use for the chicken balls, but in the meantime had moved on to another shop. Now also we try to stay away from chicken, though I miss it. I think I also bought BBQ chicken to make paella.
The sauerkraut that they have here is imported Seaburger sauerkraut. It is really nice, but I can eat other sauerkrauts. I hadn't tasted it before. An online friend taught me to make ribs in the oven. We also had an Indonesian styled ribs with star anise, but I eventually got tired of ribs, boneless ones. We bought the star anise on a trip to the regional centre.
Indonesian Style Pork Spare Ribs (this isn't on the ABC site where it was before)
2 tabs vegetable oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp five spice powder
4 star anise
1 cinnamon stick
450g pork ribs
1 tbs dark soya sauce
5 cups water
Heat oil and fry garlic for a minute. Add the spices and meat and fry for another 3-4 minutes. Add the soy sauce and water, bring to the boil, then gently simmer for 1 hour.
Cooks note (us): Try brocolli or beans with this.
We also bought beef sausages with black pepper and kranskys. Do you know at the time the freezer section had limited vegetables. I remember something about being excited about the introduction of either broad beans or brussels sprouts or both. I think broad beans.
Forums were great then. I had been on the ebay community, because of what they had titled it. I think discussion board perhaps, rather than chat or something, so I was encouraged to give it a try. Then I liked other types.
Anyway, with the beef sausages we finally found a way of having couscous, with marinated capsicum. So since then we have kept some in the fridge, though the kids are not keen on couscous so we have gone away from that a little. The kranskys were very good in soup, and only last week we found a variation of our usual soup this one is more like minestrone.
By this stage at the start of our third seachange year we had a go at homemade bread. Also I heard for the first time about cinnamon ornaments. Imagine an Aussie mixing that apple sauce you buy in a jar with bulk cinnamon that I bought on the net to make ornaments for the tree. I think we bought it from Santos.
Our shop started ordering the long Turkish bread and we really enjoyed that. Our shop had banned plastic bags by then and for some reason occasionally the end of the bread was snapped a little in the box I think.
I started to buy rocket for the first time. I found that it is nice in a salad with sun-dried tomatoes and lebanese cucumbers and balsamic dressing.
I had seen some coloured American sunflowers online. They had started to grow which was nice.
We were experiementing with American and other recipes, but this wasn't really anything that had long lasting effect on my menu planning I don't think. Things like French dip sandwiches, spoon bread. Miso soup was good. We just ran out of either dashi or bonito stock. It is very quick to make that way, 10 minutes. Those ingredients came to me in a box in the mail.
One of the last things I bought at this shop was sheets of seaweed. We were collecting recipes from the Family Circle then and putting them into a marbig. We made brown rice & cucumber nori rolls, again with lebanese cucumbers.
During our practise seachange year, we had some recipes that could be made on very little money as sometimes my menu planning made the difference between eating and not eating. I found the vegetarian section of Cookery the Australia Way very helpful in particular spicey lentil noodles.
Then we started experimenting with black turtle beans. They also came in a bag from Kwikshop. I love black bean soup, though these days make a more simple one that everyone likes.
In the winter past we celebrated our first Christmas in July. We made Hot Pecan Banana Cake from Australian Good Taste magazine. Not sure if the shortage of bananas affected the next year or not, remember we couldn't buy bananas one year?
I must have ordered grits by this stage. I can't say that we are a fan.
We also had chicken burgers with a radish salsa on the menu, that was very nice.