Spiced Pumpkin, Turmeric and Coconut Soup

Time to spice things up, A twist on an old classic soup. If you like Thai flavours of ginger, coconut cream and coriander well this is a simple yet tasty dish to help change-up the everyday pumpkin soup recipe.


Spiced Pumpkin, Turmeric and Coconut Soup


20g butter

1kg butternut pumpkin, peeled, seed removed and diced

1 potato, peeled and diced

1 leek white part sliced

1 tbsp ground turmeric

2 tsp ground ginger

2 tsp ground coriander

2 tsp cumin

2 tsp cinnamon

1 L  vegetable stock

1/2 cup coconut cream

salt and pepper

Fresh coriander to garnish


  1. In a large stock pot melt butter on medium/high heat, add leek and saute for 2-3 mins until softened.
  2. Add potato and pumpkin and spices, toss through vegetables
  3. Add stock and bring to the boil
  4. Turn heat to low and simmer for 20-30mins until pumpkin is soft
  5. Blitz soup with a stick blender or in a food processor to make a smooth puree
  6. Place back in the pot and add coconut cream and season with salt and pepper
  7. Reheat the soup then serve with some fresh coriander




Green Split Pea & Ham Soup

Another Winter soup recipe for you, this one I have to admit isn’t one I’ve grown up eating. I am more used to the Italian chunky soups like minestrone but I thought I would give this soup a go and see what I thought. One thing I first learnt was it was made with split peas not green peas. While you can see recipes that use green peas traditionally it’s actually split peas.  It also uses ham hock to flavour the soup then shred the meat and add to the soup. I have to say it wasn’t one of my favourite soups ever but a nice change nevertheless.



Split Pea & Ham Soup


500g green split peas

1 tbs olive oil

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 onion, diced

2 carrots,  diced

2 celery stalks, chopped

1 bay leaf

sprigs of thyme

1 smoked ham hock

1L (4 cups) chicken stock

1L (4 cups) water

salt and pepper


  1. Rinse split peas under cold water
  2. Heat oil in a large pot on high heat, add oil, onion and garlic cook for  mins until onions soften.
  3. Add all other ingredients with the whole ham hock into the pot cover and simmer for 2-2 1/2 hours or until thickened and split peas are tender
  4. Discard bay leaf. Remove ham hock take off the skin and any excess fat.
  5. Shred the meat off the bone and set aside
  6. Puree soup with a stick blender or in a blender
  7. Add the shredded ham back to the soup and season with salt and pepper






Italian Eggplant Parmigiana

Continuing to use up the endless amounts of basil leaves it was sauce making time and the last of the sister in-laws eggplants. I decided to make the family classic eggplant parmigiana.


This is one of those traditional recipe that has been made in our family for generations like most Italian families and now I  will share with you. Though the traditional version is a little different in every family and well I have opted to bake my eggplants first instead of frying them for a healthier option.

Cook in the oven 15-20mins
Start Layering 
Top with bocconcini

Italian Eggplant Parmigiana


1tbsp olive oil

2 cloves garlic crushed

2 cups  tomato passata

1/2 cup water

1/4 cup of red wine (optional)

1 bunch basil leaves

1/2 tsp salt

2 eggplants sliced thickly

2 tsp oregano

50g parmesan cheese

100g bocconcini cheese thinly sliced

salt and pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 180’C
  2. To make tomato sauce; Heat olive oil in a small saucepan on the stove add garlic and cook till just browned and fragrant
  3. Add passata, water, salt, wine and basil to the pot
  4. Bring to the boil, turn down to low heat with lid on and simmer for at least 30 minutes
  5. Meanwhile place sliced eggplant on a lined baking tray sprinkle with oregano, salt and pepper and drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil
  6. Cook in the oven for 15-20 mins until just tender
  7. In a 18x 25cm baking dish spoon some tomato sauce on the base just to cover
  8. lay one layer of eggplants, spoon sauce generously over the eggplants, followed by some parmesan cheese and basil leaves
  9. Repeat layering using all remaining eggplant, top with sliced bocconcini
  10. Bake covered with foil for 30 mins then remove foil and cook for a further 15mins until bocconcini has melted and browned and eggplant is tender

Italian Eggplant Parmigiana 








Cauliflower Crust Pizza with Colourful Veggies


I had this beautiful whole cauliflower staring at me for a good 10mins hmm what to make with you?? I only had a short time to prepare something before I did the school run so I had to think fast. I had some ideas come to mind vegetable curry, cauliflower rice, even what’s been trending at the moment baked whole cauliflower.

Prep veggies

With only minutes to decide I went for a quick cauli crust pizza base. As it was something I could quickly whip up prepare veggies and bake when I got home from the afternoon rush.

Blitz Cauliflower in a food processor till smooth and resembles rice like consistency
In a microwave safe bowl, cover with plastic film & cook for 8 mins. Strain excess liquid through a colander


Mix cauliflower with egg, cheese and S&P. Spread on a lined baking tray. Bake crust on 220’C for 15-20mins until crisp and golden
Top with tomato paste & pesto
Top with you favourite veggies, cook for 15-20mins

It is super fast only takes 15 mins in the oven once topped so perfect for those days when time gets the better of you. My kids turn their nose up at cauliflower so this was an adults meal for us instead I had some bakery prepared pizza bases from our local bakery and they enjoyed topping theirs for themselves.

So pizza night was still enjoyed by all!


Cauliflower Crust Pizza with Colourful Veggies

  • Time: 35mins prep 15mins cooking
  • Print


1 large whole cauliflower, cut into florets

1 egg

1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese

2 tbsp tomato paste

2 tbsp basil pesto 

1 purple onion, cut into wedges

1/2 yellow capsicum, cut in chunky strips

1/2 zucchini thinly sliced

6 brussel sprouts, leaves separated

1/2 red chilli, sliced

1 tbsp olive oil

50g fetta cheese, crumbled

Fresh basil leaves to top


  1. Preheat oven to 220’C
  2. Place cauliflower in a food processor and blitz until resembles fine crumbs
  3. Place cauliflower crumb in a microwave safe bowl, cover with cling wrap and cook on high for 8 mins
  4. Strain in a colander pressing down removing any excess liquid
  5. Place in a bowl with eggs, cheese and season with salt and pepper. Mix to combine
  6. Spread the cauliflower mixture onto a lined baking tray in the shape of oval or you can use a round pizza tray. Cook in oven for 20mins or until crisp and golden
  7. Meanwhile place onion, capsicum, zucchini, brussel sprouts, chilli and oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss gently to coat veggies
  8. Once crust is ready spread tomato paste and dollops of pesto. Arrange veggies and top with fetta cheese
  9. Bake in the oven for 10-15mins or until veggies are just cooked
  10. Top with some fresh basil leaves

Note: Best eaten straight away





Orecchiette with Pork, Broccoli Mushrooms and Roast Tomatoes


Such a quick and easy family favourite that satisfies every member of the family and still with some added veggie goodness.

I have used orecchiette pasta shells but you can use any type of pasta with this. For vegetarian version leave out the pork.

Orecchiette with Pork, Broccoli, Mushrooms & Roasted Tomatoes


500g orrecchiette

2 tbs olive oil

500g pork mince

1 small onion diced

2 garlic cloves

salt and pepper

6-8 cherry tomatoes

1 head broccoli cut into florets

1/2 lemon rind finely grated

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

Extra virgin olive oil


  1. Place a large pot of salted water on the stove and bring to the boil. Add Pasta and cook per packet instructions.
  2. Meanwhile, In a large frypan on high heat add olive oil , garlic and onion and saute for 3mins until onion has softened.
  3. Add pork mince cook for 5-6 minutes until browned and cooked through. Season with salt and pepper. Turn heat to low
  4. Line a baking tray with baking paper and place tomatoes and roast in a 180’c oven for around 5 mins until blistered and partly soft. Remove and set aside
  5. In the last 2 minutes of pasta cooking time add the broccoli florets into the pot of boiling pasta let it cook then drain along with the pasta. Reserving 1/2 cup of water from the pot.
  6. Add the pasta and broccoli with the reserved water to the pork mixture in the pan and toss to combine.
  7. Add  lemon rind and grated parmesan, roasted tomatoes and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. you can also use chilli salt for extra heat.