I had a very busy weekend (I did a painting for a silent auction for donation to the Premier's Flood Relief fund thing and it took AAAGGGES) so it was nice to come home from work this afternoon and actually do something I wanted to do. (Not that I didn't want to do the painting! I just didn't have any chores tonight :)) I tidied my garden! I cut back more lemongrass (the stuff just grows and grows!) some flowers I have that were taking over, and I pulled out my basil because the above little buggers had demolished it all. I rescued enough for a pesto though! I have one bean plant growing (Bob dug up the rest, naughty cat) and I fertilised everything with seaweed and the juice from my bokashi bucket.
On Sunday after we went to the beach we made a light lunch. It may no look very exciting but wow it was delicious. The recipe is adapted from 'Australian Good Food' magazine, Jan/Feb 2011.
Barley and Pea Salad
Makes 4 small serves
2 tbsp olive oil
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
pinch of dried chilli flakes
Handful of mint, chopped
1 red onion, finely chopped
Rind and juice of a lemon
1 cup pearl barley
200g frozen peas
250g frozen broad beans
Mix all but the last 3 ingredients into a small bowl and set aside.
Cook barley as you usually do (I use 3 cups water per 1 cup barley, bring to boil and simmer for about 30 mins). In last few minutes add peas and broad beans. Wait for it to reboil and cook for a minute.
Drain barley mix and return to pot or put in a bowl. Stir through dressing and serve!
To make this go further you can add tofu or seitan or something.
On Sunday evening I decided to make something for work lunch/snacks. I've been wanting to make my own muesli bars for ages since store bought ones almost always contain honey or milk powder, or are coated in yoghurt or filled with sugar, or hideously expensive *breath*, and of course are all individually wrapped in plastic and cardboard and printed and etc. Useless wastes. So I came across this recipe that I used as a base for my own bars! Let me tell you, they are the best muesli bars I've ever had. I had one with toast for breakfast this morning and I wasn't starving like I usually am by morning tea.
Homemade Muesli Bars
Makes about 14 bars
1 cup rolled barley
1 cup rolled rye
1/4 cup unsweetened dessicated coconut
2 tbsp chia seeds (black or white)
2 tbsp sunflower seeds, lightly bashed in a mortar and pestle
1/4 cup chopped dried cranberries
1/4 cup chopped nuts (I used almonds and brazil nuts)
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 cup rice syrup*
1 tbsp molasses**
1/3 cup tahini
1 tsp vanilla extract
Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl.
In a small saucepan, bring rice syrup and molasses to boil. Take off heat. Stir in tahini and vanilla.
Mix into dry ingredients.
Line a brownie pan with baking paper and turn the mixture into it. Get another piece of baking paper and press it all down flat.
Let cool and cut up into bars! I had mine in the fridge before I cut them up and they crumbled a bit. I'd cut it up at room temperature next time.
*Rice syrup is my new honey. I swear to god, it looks like honey, tastes like honey and is as sweet as honey. It even burned my throat a little when I ate a teaspoon, like honey. I don't think it has the same antibacterial properties as honey though ;) I bought this brand.
** I didn't have any maple syrup as stated in the original recipe so I used what I had on hand. Maple syrup would be better.
I've also been making yoghurt :) Proper yoghurt with probiotics and everything (except the dairy). I'll take a good photo of my next batch. The last one looked like vomit. As yoghurt tends to do. Haha. Another storebought vegan alternative that just doesn't cut it for me (SUGAR!!!). The cheap-cheap easiyo yoghut maker called for me at Woolworths!