RSPCA cupcake day

We all can’t be there for cupcake day, so why not bake your own and post it online. The day itself is on the 26th of October and you can register here.

The RSPCA is a charity that looks after animal welfare and this year like other charities have been doing it tough due to COVID.

In Victoria and the rest of Australia you can have a picnic and post it on Instagram. This way you can get people to support the cause.  Or you can do a virtual cupcake party and everyone donates to you.

Baking your own cupcakes is easy as and it’s a good way to stay at home and get rid of the boredom blues. You can even get your kids involved in this. We got this recipe from In the Kitchen with Matt.

You can use some of the things in your Basics box such as flour, milk, and sugar. You could use the canned fruit if you have. But you still need eggs and butter.

This is a fun way to get the family involved during the lockdown. You could even do Halloween themed cupcakes.


Tofu Burgers

I love vegetarian food and I enjoy eating tofu burgers. Pre Covid19 I went out for Tofu burgers a lot. But you can make your own at home.

A tofu burger has no meat in there so it is perfect for Meatless Monday

Image courtesy of Vegan Crunk

You do everything the same as a normal burger except you grill the tofu. You use extra firm tofu and you grill this. According to Threemanycooks, “Wrap tofu in paper toweling or a clean tea towel and place on a plate. Place a second plate on top and weight to drain additional liquid, about 10 minutes”

Instead of tomato sauce you can use sweet chilli sauce. I like the ones from the Asian grocery shops as they are authentic.

All the vegetables and the bun is the same as a normal one.


What Covid19 is doing to our food habits

Covid19 has changed our food habits and not for the better.

I read this article on Food Politics and wondered if Australia is doing the same thing. We probably are.

Photo by eric montanah on Pexels.com

The isolation period during Covid19 has seen us cooking more and baking more in iso. As such people have gained weight by doing that. Our physical health has declined a bit. We did a bit of research on Instagram and found that there were 19.7k + posts on iso baking and 43.5k+ posts on isolation baking. Covidbaking got 28.3k posts. Lockdown baking got 83.9k posts. This says that a lot of people did baking during these times because they were so bored at home

The tag covidtakeout has 500+ posts on Instagram. Many Australians got takeaway during this time and that has contributed to weight gain

Also the biggest change would have to be the cooking. Many people have taken up cooking and buying their food locally.

People are snacking a lot more out of boredom. Some of us think about food more and we try to make that change to eating more healthy foods.

So what do we need to do to get out of this mess?

We need to regain our self control over food and do other things like learn some new exercises. There are lots of new exercises on Youtube.

We also need to make more soups and things other than baking.

Now that things are open up again such as the gym, why not go there once a week? Or you could train for that marathon that you always wanted to do next year!

Oh and you can still have that cake, but only as a treat!


Why processed foods are bad for you

We talk about why processed foods are bad for you

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Pexels.com

In the US and UK obesity is at all time high. Earlier this week I watched a new report about people in Melbourne’s low income suburbs buying all these junk food as the supermarkets price them pretty cheap. It is the same in 7/11. All the processed food are at the front of the store with all the fresh stuff at the back. The supermarkets want people to buy these foods now that we are in lockdown.

Processed foods are high in sugar, salt and fats. They are also high in calories and if you want to lose weight, you don’t need those empty calories. According to Mind Body Green they are bad for gut health. Every day we are bombarded at the supermarket with all these foods. The supermarkets place them at the front of the store so that people will buy them. These junk foods attract the people on low income because that’s all they can afford.

Yes we can’t change the environment. But we can change our attitude and buying habits. Like for example my flatmate buys all these crappy snacks but I just don’t eat them and instead buy my own. Avoid the junk food at the supermarket. Know what you want before you get there. Write a list if you have to.

We should try and eat more natural foods. We are deficient in fruits, vegetables and fish and seafood and whole grains. Its ok to have a little bit of processed food from time to time just as a treat but nothing more.


Fruitcake using the items in the Woolworths basic box

The Woolworths Basics box is $80 and it includes all the basic needs for a weekly shop. You can buy in online for people that are vulnerable such as the elderly and people on low incomes. The delivery fee is included.

Image courtesy of EWESPECIAL

Here when I saw that mixed fruits and sugar and flour were included I thought of a fruitcake. The only thing you need is brandy. The Salvos do this for the needy with custard.

I got this recipe from Allrecipes.

Servings: 10

Yield:1 – 8 inch cake

Ingredients

Ingredient Checklist

  • 12 ounces candied mixed fruit
  • 5 ounces glace cherries, roughly chopped
  • 2 ounces candied mixed citrus peel
  • 2 ounces chopped walnuts
  • ¾ cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup milk
  • 12 ounces sifted self-rising flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ½ cups white sugar

Directions

Instructions Checklist

  • Step 1 Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (160 degrees C). Line one 8 inch deep sided cake tin with parchment paper.
  • Step 2 Place the fruit cherries, peel, walnuts, sugar, butter or margarine, mixed spice, baking soda and milk in a medium sized saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Let mixture cool to body temperature.
  • Step 3 Stir in the flour and the eggs. Pour batter into the prepared pan. Wrap outside of pan with brown paper or newspaper.
  • Step 4 Bake at 325 degrees F (160 degrees C) for 40 minutes then reduce temperature to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C) and continue to baking cake for 1-1/2 hours. Remove cake from oven and allow it to cool in tin for 5 minutes then turn it out onto a cooling rack, remove greaseproof paper and leave until cool. Cake can be stored for up to 6 months wrapped in foil and in an air tight tin.

Partner Tip

Reynolds® parchment can be used for easier cleanup/removal from the pan


National Burger day: a homemade recipe

Next Thursday the 28th is National Burger day. Whilst we wouldn’t be allowed out due to Coronavirus restrictions, you can still have a burger at home.

Photo by Valeria Boltneva on Pexels.com

A homemade burger with a fried egg is about 300-450 calories depending on what’s in there. You could do a vegetarian Lentil burger or you could do the standard meat one. The standard meat one normally has bacon in it. What you will need is burger buns, meat patties (you can make them yourself) or lentil patties, tomato sauce, avocado, onions, lettuce, gherkin, beetroot, cheese and a fried egg.

We used Tip top’s burger buns which was bought at Coles and the patties were homemade. We caramelised the onions and toasted the bread in a sandwich maker.

But here’s a video from How to Basic on Youtube

Do enjoy your burger with a beer if you like or just on its own.


Slurpee and why it is bad for you

We talk about the 7/11 slurpee and why its not good for you.

I used to buy one slurpee a week. In coronavirus isolation, I rethought the slurpee thing.

It is too sweet and it tastes like Wiz Fizz. For $2.60 I got a cup of nothingness but sugar. You go in, get your cup and then fill it up yourself with whatever flavour you want. The regular sized cups are $1. And then you take your cup to the counter to pay. They also do MYKI’s and other things. There is usually one or two people there.

For the average joe that would be $18.20 a week or put simply $946.40 a year if they were to buy this every day. Some people do.

The 7-11 workers are paid very badly too. Here they are paid about $8-10 per hour and many of them are students. Last year there was a huge news report about this scam.

But as runners it is ok for that energy boost. And now 7/11 has the sugar free slurpee which I often get when I’m there. I usually buy a small cup once a week and then I’m happy. You often get a brain freeze on your first sip.

Too much sugar is bad for your teeth not to mention your waistline. With most of the slurpees they usually have some sort of artificial flavouring in there.

But if you were to have a slurpee go for the sugar free ones. And just have it once in a blue moon.


Waffles

You can make waffles as part of Live below the line if it is plain or if its not you can do it as part of the $80 basics box which includes flour and milk.

Milk if you buy it for $1 can be a part of your Live below the line. And it also calls for one egg. You can make a few of them. Here you’ll need a waffle maker and you can buy them at Harvey Norman or Kmart! You’ll just need to follow the instructions on the box. Here is one simple on from Easy Breakfast recipes on Youtube

If you want you can add anything on it after you made it such as jam or nutella or just plain sugar.

Bon Appetit


Pulled Pork Sliders

They are easy to do at home and the usual bars and clubs charge about $9-$15 per plate of two. Well we bought the pack of eight sliders at Coles for about $4-$5 and the cos lettuce for about $2. The pulled pork mixture was from our freezer.

Image courtesy of southernboydishes.com

So here’s how to make the sliders

You will need:

  • A sandwich press
  • Your premade pulled pork mixture
  • Cos lettuce
  • Onion
  • And the sliders (1-2 per person is fine)

First of all wash the lettuce and then finely shred it.

Slice the onion

Cut open the sliders

Put in your pulled pork mixture followed by the lettuce and onion. Here is a Youtube video by Chowhound to show you how:

And then use the sandwich maker to press it all down together nicely and to warm up the sliders

Enjoy


Homemade Shepherd’s Pie

Now that we are in the Covid19 period and people have either lost their jobs or are working from home we talk about a simple Shepherd’s Pie that you can make on a rainy day. We used up the leftover potato mash to make the top. This is really good as a winter comfort food.

We love this pot pie and you can use up the leftover mince in another dish. It does take a few hours to make

You can easily make this with salad or roasted vegetables such as beans and potatoes as a side dish. This is good for a family dinner