Beef and Vegetable Pie

I came across a food magazine the other night at the supermarket that I hadn’t seen before. It is published here in New Zealand and is called Recipes+. The April issue contains at least 300 recipes which are no-fuss and extremely budget friendly.

Every recipe in the magazine is easy, and delicious! I was particularly impressed to see it also had plenty of recipes that were gluten-free and vegetarian. Best of all, it contained an excellent index! There isn’t anything worse than seeing a recipe and having to flick through to find it again a couple of months later!

I have a few meals that I am going to try this week. So if you’re looking for a delicious, filling weeknight meal which is inexpensive and low in fat, look no further.

Beef and Vegetable Pie

  • 500 grams beef mince
  • 1 brown onion, chopped
  • 500 grams vegetables, chopped (I used broccoli, carrots, potato, and zucchini)
  • 1/3 cup brown onion gravy powder
  • 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed

Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Grease a 20 cm square ovenproof dish. Heat oil in in a saucepan over a high heat. Add mince and onion. Cook stirring to break up any lumps in the mince, for 5 minutes or until browned.

Add chopped vegetables, gravy powder and a 1/2 cup of water. Cook and stir for approximately 3 minutes or until the sauce is nice and thick!

Transfer mince mixture to prepared dish. Place a pastry sheet over the mince mixture to cover. Roll the overhanging pastry inwards to form a border around the edge of the dish. Score the top of the pastry with a small sharp knife. Brush with extra milk.

Bake for 12-15 minutes or until browned.

This pie is perfect to eat around this time of the year when the nights are cooler and all you want is a nice, hot meal when you get home. On a sweet note, the April issue also includes a picture of a pretty amazing looking White Chocolate Mud Cake – something else I might have to try! Drool.

Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Icing

Looking back I seem to be blogging about a lot of ‘favourite things’ recently and quite frankly, this cake is no exception.

Carrot cake is my absolute favourite type of cake and for this reason, I have been privileged to try a fair few! The following recipe belongs to an old flatmate and friend of mine. This cake has it all. Generally a repeat offender if I ever need to bake a cake for someone or something!

The photo illustrates two cakes using this recipe and a layer of delicious cream cheese icing in between. In hindsight, I’d say I was just being a little too ambitious and a single layer cake works just as well, if not better.

Classic Carrot Cake

For the cake

  • 1 cup wholemeal flour
  • 1 cup plain white flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups raw sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup oil
  • 4 eggs (beaten)
  • 3 cups finely grated carrot

For the cream cheese icing

  • 8 tablespoons cream cheese
  • 50 grams of butter
  • 2 cups sifted icing sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Grease and line a round cake tin. Pour mixture into tin. Bake at 180 degrees for about 1 hour or until cooked. Ice when cool.

Mix together ingredients for the cream cheese icing. Ice cake and sprinkle with 1 cup of chopped nuts and apricots!