Some days you want to cook; other days the goal is simply ‘food in mouths’. Welcome to Every Night of the Week, a cookbook for people who don’t like hard-and-fast recipes, by food and recipe writer, stylist and Instagram genie Lucy Tweed.
Broccoli & cheese pie
Mum was great at pastry. She used to tell me, ‘Loody, you should pay attention; I am great at pastry.’
1 head of broccoli, florets chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons chopped chives
½ cup (50 g) finely grated parmesan
445 g (15½ oz) good-quality shortcrust pastry
4 cups (120 g) loosely packed basil leaves
250 g (9 oz) frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed
1 cup (25 g) oregano leaves
500 g (1 lb 2 oz) fresh ricotta, crumbled
5 eggs, lightly beaten (reserve 1 teaspoon for the egg wash)
sea salt and freshly ground
Optional ingredients: world peace, extra parmesan, extra lemon zest … actually these are ALL essential.
Like anything you grow up with, you have no idea how good it is until you go forth into the world and learn only by comparison.
I am taking a similar approach with my children.
Except I expect them to deliver unwarranted statements declaring the many reasons I am great.
Mum was right though. And making your own pastry is a calming, meditative ritual, although one that I rarely have time for.
So this recipe pimps something store-bought to make it feel more like homemade.
Preheat the oven to 180 C (350 F).
Saute the broccoli and onion in the oil over medium heat for 10 minutes, then remove from the heat.
Grate the zest of the lemon over the broccoli mix as it cools.
Fold and knead the chives and parmesan into the pastry, bring together into a ball then wrap in plastic wrap and set aside to rest.
Blitz the basil, spinach and oregano until fine in a food processor.
Combine the ricotta and beaten egg (except the teaspoon you’ve remembered to keep back) in a large bowl and fold through the blitzed basil mixture. Season with salt and pepper if you think it needs it.
Roll out the pastry to a 40 cm (16 inch) round about 5 mm ( inch) thick and place on a pizza tray.
Place the broccoli mixture in the middle and top with the herby ricotta, leaving a 7 cm (2¾ inch) pastry band around the edge.
Fold the pastry up and over the filling as much as you can, pinching and pleating it to seal.
Whisk together the reserved egg and 1 tablespoon of water to make an egg wash.
Brush the egg wash over the pastry. Bake for 30–40 minutes, until the edges are golden and the centre is springy to touch.
Serve warm or cold.
Red curry chicken meatballs & sweet potato noodles
Serves 4, once now, and then again, and then another time (makes about 80 meatballs).
You can turn this mix into fancy little party sticks, although I’m just not sure I’m ready for that on a Tuesday.
Olive oil, for pan-frying
1 bunch Asian greens (gai lan or choy sum), cut into 10 cm (4 inch) lengths
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
300 g (10½ oz) sweet potato
noodles, boiled and drained
my famous dumpling dipping biz (1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon Chinese black vinegar and 1 teaspoon sesame oil)
1 garlic clove, peeled
grated zest and juice of 1 lime
1 golden shallot, finely chopped
1 stick lemongrass, white part only, finely chopped
1 makrut lime leaf, shredded
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1 kg (2 lb 3 oz) chicken mince (ask your butcher to mince some thighs with skin on for you – game changer!)
2 tablespoons red curry paste
250 g (9 oz) green beans, trimmed and finely chopped
sea salt and freshly ground
Optional ingredients: lime wedges and sesame seeds.
Listen. You, like my neighbour, may wish to come to full blows* with me about the sweet potato noodles. I like them. They have the texture of rubber bands. I remember chewing rubber bands when I was little – very satisfying, until you accidentally swallow one.
Try them once. Decide for yourself. Change them for another noodle if you wish. Move on.
For the meatballs, blitz the garlic, lime zest and juice, shallot, lemongrass, lime leaf and sesame oil into a semi-smooth paste.
Combine this with the chicken mince, red curry paste and chopped beans, and season with salt and pepper.
Using a teaspoon, scoop rough little balls and place on a tray lined with baking paper. You’re going for about 80 meatballs. Work out how many you want to eat (I go about 6 per person), then freeze the rest on the tray and bag up once frozen for later.
In a hot, lightly oiled frying pan over high heat, fry off the meatballs in batches until nicely browned, then set aside.
Add the Asian greens and saute for 2 minutes until slightly charred, then add the garlic and fry for a further 5 minutes.
Rinse the cooked noodles under hot water and add to the pan, along with the meatballs and the dipping biz.
Toss the whole lot together well until the meatballs are cooked through.
*Our ‘blows’ are often just laughing shock that we don’t agree. Plus, she has a pool, so we BFF.
A chocolate thing
All my desserts are dream chasers, perhaps because I don’t crave them much myself so I rely heavily on that one time …
130 g (4½ oz) butter, melted
1 cup (220 g) sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
½ cup (75 g) plain (all-purpose) flour
½ cup (55 g) hazelnut meal
1 cup (150 g) roughly chopped dark chocolate
10 pink marshmallows
1 bunch rhubarb, trimmed and cut into 5 cm (2 inch) lengths
3 tablespoons orange juice
½ cup (110 g) sugar
1 cup (110 g) frozen raspberries (or fresh if in season)
vanilla ice cream
I went camping at a friend’s farm 15 years ago and this one imprinted so heavily that when I texted the group this picture, they sent me back an image of a spliff.
Little did we know then that ‘stoner’s delight’ would one day feature regularly on swank restaurant menus.
The blueprint for a dessert of this category is essentially chocolate, then words like warm, gooey, melty, sugary, crisp and chewy, and finally a random ‘ooooh yeah let’s put this in there!’ element. In this case, marshmallows.
Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).
For the stewed rhubarb, combine the rhubarb, orange juice and sugar in a saucepan and simmer over medium heat for 10 minutes until the fruit has softened.
Remove from the heat and stir in the raspberries, then allow the mix to cool.
Whisk together the butter, sugar, vanilla and cocoa powder until light and creamy.
Whisk in the eggs, one at a time.
Gently fold in the flour, hazelnut meal and chocolate until just combined.
Put the rhubarb in the base of a greased ovenproof frying pan (the one I used is 25 cm/10 inches) or baking dish and spread evenly. Dot with the marshmallows, and spoon the chocolate batter over the top.
Bake for 30 minutes or until puffed and slightly crispy on the edge.
This can be served a bit underdone, like a self-saucing pudding.
Images and text from Every Night of the Week by Lucy Tweed; photography by Lucy Tweed. Murdoch Books RRP $35.00.