Chilaquiles

29 July 2014
Words and photos by Rachel Pitts

Chilaquiles

Working on an introduction to a Mexican cookbook a few months ago has sent me off on a new cooking adventure. The world of Mexican food is big and there’s a lot to cover, and the cookbooks I now have in my collection are hardcore – full of exotic, hard-to-come-by ingredients and strict cooking techniques. Mexican cuisine has always seemed interesting, but also a bit difficult and daunting to really do properly – so much easier for me to ramble into Asia, the Middle East, Europe, even Africa, for endless inspiration … But slowly I’m wrapping my head around Mexican food, cooking some great new things. I’ve realised I’m not just adding a new dish to my big list of favourite things to cook, but a whole new category. It’s been so exciting and I’m not nearly done yet. Read the rest of this entry »

Easy lime (or lemon) ice-cream

22 April 2014
Words and photos by Rachel Pitts

lime ice-cream

Lime season should be summer, you’d think. Then the weather feels perfect for lime-spiked drinks on ice and Asian salads, but it’s not until a few months later that limes really come into their own. Our backyard lime tree, a dwarf Tahitian, starts fruiting around the end of March. When the limes turn from deep green to a slightly more yellow, ‘limey’ colour, and they yield a little when squeezed, it’s time to start picking. Unlike lemon trees that keep giving for much of the year, limes are a special autumn treat. Read the rest of this entry »

Smashed cucumber salad

27 March 2014
Words and photos by Rachel Pitts

smashed cucumber salad

My vegetable garden seems to have a mind of its own. This summer it decided that tomatoes and basil would not be the frontrunners. Instead it’s been the cucumbers and spring onions, and just when I was about to give up on them, our super slow beans finally started producing. While technically this is my garden, I feel like I’m really just along for the ride and am happy with any result – as long as there is one! Read the rest of this entry »

Pumpkin and quinoa patties

27 February 2014
Words and photos by Rachel Pitts
Illustrations by Katherine Bird

Smoking trout by Katherine Bird

Fritters and patties are big at home right now. It seems a quirky developmental stage our children go through; a unique thing that happens in our house like bum-shuffle crawling and oh-so-late walking! (Our little boy is 20 months old and has just taken a few steps! But he generally prefers to scoot about on his bottom, wearing all his pants to threads.) Read the rest of this entry »

Vietnamese pancakes

23 January 2014
Words and photos by Rachel Pitts

Vietnamese pancakes

My four-year old daughter is learning the sounds that letters make. L – luh – is for ladybird. D – duh – is for dad. V – vuh – is for Vietnamese pancakes! I grinned from ear to ear when she said this. I love that she worked it out by herself, but even more so that she’s as enthusiastic as her slightly nutty mother for this delicious meal that we’ve started eating at home. Read the rest of this entry »

Christmas pudding

14 December 2013
Words and photos by Rachel Pitts

two christmas puddings

I adored my nana’s Christmas cake and pudding. A few days before Christmas her cake sat upon our sideboard wrapped in a fancy red tinsel cuff, my brother and I just busting to eat a piece. Her pudding was not on display but we knew it was coming … With custard and thick cream after our Christmas lunch, it was almost an otherworld experience. I remember my brother and I had three helpings once – and nana’s pudding didn’t even have money in it!  Read the rest of this entry »

Parsnip and orange pudding

19 September 2013
Words and photos by Rachel Pitts

parsnip pudding

One of my most cherished cookbooks is a small beige hardback called German Cooking. I love its browned pages with marks and fingerprints, the lack of photos, and the not very inventive recipe titles that hail from an era of plain speaking. I even love the not very helpful index, which means that to find anything you have to go through recipe by recipe, scanning the ingredients like hunting for treasure. Read the rest of this entry »

Stuffed flatbreads

18 July 2013
Words by Rachel Pitts
Photos by Leah Holscher
Illustrations by Katherine Bird

Filling for breads

Sometimes life goes so fast you completely forget to take photographs. Or you feel too giddy with the experience to stop to write anything down.

Pulling the back off our house two years ago and embarking on our renovation was like this. My husband worked his butt off through winter rebuilding as fast as he could, while our then-1-year-old daughter and I got on as best we could in our draughty half-house with its bathroom in a tin shed in the backyard. Read the rest of this entry »

Tomato sambal

30 April 2013
Words and photos by Rachel Pitts

tomato sambal

The last month of autumn might seem the wrong month for thinking about tomatoes. Happy days of tomato-and-chive sandwiches with different-coloured cherry tomatoes from our garden (and importantly including some continental-style butter) are well and truly finished, and there are no more meals accompanied by this year’s favourite zucchini, tomato and basil stew. Read the rest of this entry »

Chocolate walnut biscuits

22 March 2013
Words and photos by Rachel Pitts

Chocolate walnut biscuits

It’s been an interesting week this week. Is it that I’ve had less appointments and urgent things to do, or are things getting slightly easier at home? Some telling things have happened. While my husband was at work and the kids and I were hanging out, I had a day where I managed to fit in craft plus baking with my three year old daughter. The two of us finished decorating some origami tigers, then made a batch of chocolate walnut biscuits. She was delighted. It might not sound like much, but since having a son 9 months ago, craft and baking (and blog writing, and other things …) have been on my list of things that are just about impossible to get around to, for the moment. Read the rest of this entry »