Lizzie's Recipes

A collection of easy to make recipes

Archive for the month “April, 2014”

Spaghetti Alla Puttanesca

This Southern Italian Spaghetti is divine.  Salty and zingy from the anchovies, capers, olives and chilli and fragrant from the garlic, it makes the taste buds burst into life and is one of my favourite sauces.   Don’t be afraid to use anchovies.  They cook down into the sauce and are just a wonderful flavour in the background…

The quantities shown here serve two hungry people…

Spaghetti Puttanesca


1 tablespoon of good olive oil
1 large clove of garlic grated
1 long red chilli chopped finely (leave the seeds in for more heat)
1 small jar anchovies drained and finely chopped
3 large vine tomatoes core removed and chopped roughly
3 or 4 finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes
1 tablespoon Passata or Neapolitan sauce
Handful of Kalamata olives
1 tablespoon baby capers (if larger chop them up)
½ cup finely chopped parsley
A pinch of sugar
Salt & Pepper to taste
Spaghetti for 2 people
Freshly grated parmesan to serve

Cook the pasta according to the direction until al dente
In the meantime, heat the oil in a pan and gently fry the garlic, chilli and anchovies
Toss in the chopped tomatoes and cook down for a few minutes
Add the rest of the ingredients finishing with the parsley
Season to taste
Toss through the drained pasta and serve topped with freshly grated parmesan cheese

Bon Appetit!  🙂

Lizzie’s Garlic Prawns

So much garlic – so little time.  Just saying the words – Garlic Prawns – conjures up the taste and smell of delicious, garlicky, buttery sauce mopped up with fresh sourdough bread…  We find that six are enough for a meal as they are quite rich so this recipe is for two…

Tip 1:  You can use frozen prawns very successfully instead of fresh, just defrost by rinsing under cold water for about 5-10 minutes

Tip 2:  I freeze my chilli’s and find it easier to just grate them instead of chopping them.

Garlic prawns


12 large prawn cutlets, tails intact

1 tablespoon of Olive Oil

4 tablespoons salted butter

1 long red chilli finely chopped (optional)

½ cup parsley finely chopped

Salt & pepper to taste


Preheat the oven to 200c fan forced and place two cast iron ramekins in to heat up

In the meantime rinse the prawns and pat dry with paper towel

In a large frying pan heat the oil and melt the butter until sizzling

Add the grated garlic and finely chopped chilli

Stir for a few minutes taking care not to brown the garlic

Throw in the prawns and cook for a few minutes until opaque and almost cooked –  they will continue to cook in the hot ramekins from bench-top to table…

Add salt and pepper to taste if desired

Tip the prawns into the hot ramekins and pour in the butter sauce as well.  Take care as it may spatter.

Garnish with finely chopped parsley

Serve with fresh sourdough bread to mop up the delicious sauce


Bon Appetit!  🙂

Lizzie’s Dirty Granny Pulled Pork

Pulled meats are a relatively new phenomenon here in Australia and as more and more trendy cafes and bars are offering Pulled Pork Sliders or Pulled Lamb Buns on their menus we thought we would have a bash at making it at home.   Wow – are we glad we did because this is the most wonderfully delicious way of cooking meat I have yet found.

So easy and with so very little effort involved, we will be trying all the variations we can in the future.  This is an adaption to a recipe I found on-line for Texas Style Pulled Pork.

Tip 1: Always use American BBQ Sauce which is different to the rather bland stuff we get in Australia. I used Sweet Baby Ray’s Hickory & Brown Sugar BBQ Sauce and this was a big winner. USA Foods in Moorabbin stock everything you could possibly desire from The States and you can also buy online. Some Aldi stores also have an “American Section” and stock Sweet Baby Rays products as well.

Tip 2: You can substitute chicken stock for the cider if you wish

Tip 3: The leftover meat can be frozen if desired. Being only two of us we can’t eat a whole roast pork in one sitting!

Tip 4:  You can substitute soft tacos or tortillas for the bread…

Pulled Pork 2

Pulled Pork 4

The coleslaw adds a tangy, crunchy flavour and was wonderful.  I just bought a pre-prepared tub at the supermarket and it was delicious.

Pulled Pork 6

The next night we ate the meat in soft tacos or tortillas…  Freshly chopped coriander, lime, chopped avocado, chopped baby tomatoes, salsa and sour cream.  Roll up and stuff in mouth – try stopping at just one!


1 pork shoulder roast

1 teaspoon olive oil

1 cup barbecue sauce

½ cup apple cider vinegar

¼ cup brown sugar

1 tablespoon prepared yellow mustard

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 extra-large onion, chopped

2 large cloves garlic, grated

1 ½ teaspoons dried thyme

1 stubby Dirty Granny Cider

Soft buns split and buttered

Coleslaw (optional)



Trim the meat of any large pieces of obvious fat such as the rind

Mix thoroughly together in a bowl the next eleven ingredients

Place the pork in a dutch oven or cast iron pot

Pour over the sauce and using your hands massage well into the meat

Cover with a tight-fitting lid and cook in a hot oven – around 220c fan-forced for 30 minutes

Remove from oven and check give a bit of a stir. The sauce will be bubbling and will have thickened a bit

Place back in the oven and lower heat to 110-120c

Slow cook for around 6-7 hours checking occasionally and spooning over the sauce

When the meat is fall apart tender remove from the oven dish and place in a roasting tray or a large plate

Using two forks pull the meat gently apart into strings and remove any bones

Tip the meat back into the oven dish and stir well into the sauce. The meat will soak up the wonderful juices

In the meantime, place your rolls buttered side down in a frying pan or griddle and toast the one side

Pile the meat on top of one half of the roll

Top with crunchy coleslaw and pop the top half of the roll on


Bon Appetit!  🙂

Old-fashioned Bangers & Mash

It’s now Autumn in Melbourne and our thoughts are turning to comfort food on these cool nights.  The simplest things in life are usually the best and nothing beats bangers and mash for good a old-fashioned daggy dinner…

Tip 1:  ALWAYS use the best quality sausages you can find.  There is nothing worse than finding bits of unidentified gristle in a snag.

Tip 2:  Never pierce sausages before cooking them.  All the lovely juices will flow out otherwise and you will be left with a dried up lump of meat in a skin…

Tip 3:  Mushy peas have a taste all of their own and are much better than ordinary peas (which you can use of course).  I buy the brand Batchelors from Rob’s British Butchers in Dandenong and the size is just right for two hungry diners

Tip 4:  Who has time to fiddle around making gravy when it can be heated up in 40 seconds in the microwave!  I use Gravox Best Bangers ‘n Mash Gravy and it’s a deliciously onion flavoured which goes beautifully with snags…

Tip 5:  Any left over mash can be used to make Scottish Tattie Scones for breakfast the next day!

Bangers & Mash



2 high quality sausages

3 large potatoes peeled and cut into quarters

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons of milk

Salt & pepper to taste

I tin of Mushy Peas

I pouch of Gravox Best Bangers ‘n Mash gravy



Gently cook your sausages over a low to medium heat until cooked through

In the meantime, boil quartered potatoes in salted water until tender and drain thoroughly

Shake off excess moisture from potatoes in a colander and return to pot

Add two generous tablespoons of butter and mash with a potato ricer

Add some mile to soften and season with salt & pepper

Beat with a wooden spoon until smooth and creamy adding additional butter if required

Heat the mushy peas in a pot and heat the gravy in the microwave according to packet instructions

Place a generous dollop of mashed potatoes in the bottom of a bowl

Place the mushy peas beside the potato mash

Top with a beautiful juicy sausage

Pour over the gravy

Be sure and serve everything piping hot


Bon Appetit!  🙂

Spaghetti Carbonara

Who doesn’t love a deliciously creamy Spaghetti Carbonara?  It is one of the quickest and easiest pastas to make as we always have eggs and bacon and parmesan cheese in the fridge…

My recipe has been honed over the years and this is our favourite version.  If you don’t have spinach it is also wonderful with peas – just throw in a large handful of frozen peas in with bacon mixture and stir through – they defrost in no time.

Pancetta is also the choice of most people which I always use if I happen to have some but I find bacon does just as well as a substitute.  I never add cream to my Carbonara as I find the eggs are rich and creamy enough and the cream can make it a bit stodgy.

The only tip I will advise you to follow is always use dried pasta for Carbonara.  It can be Linguine or Fettucine but avoid using fresh pasta.  For some reason the fresh pasta doesn’t stay firm when mixed with the eggs and it tends to go a bit gluggy…

Again – it’s your choice – there are no absolute rules – whatever tantalises your taste buds!  I have also cooked this for vegetarians (ones who eat eggs) and omitted the bacon – it’s just as yummy…

Spaghetti Carbonara




Extra Virgin Olive Oil

200 g of good quality streaky bacon sliced in batons

150g box of prepackaged baby spinach

I clove of garlic grated

1 cup of finely grated parmesan cheese

4 fresh free range eggs

Salt & ground black pepper to taste


Cook spaghetti in plenty of salted boiling water until al dente

In the meantime heat a generous lug of olive oil and gently fry the garlic and bacon until bacon is slightly crisp

Throw in the spinach and stir until wilted

In a large jug, gently whisk the eggs and fold in the parmesan cheese

When spaghetti is ready drain well and tip back into the pot over a very low heat

Add the bacon and spinach mixture coating all the strands of spaghetti well

Add the egg and cheese mixture and toss well – the heat of the spaghetti will cook the egg

Be careful not to have heat up too high as the eggs will scramble if too hot.

The egg should be creamy like a sauce.

Season well with salt & pepper

Serve in a warmed bowl with additional ground black pepper to garnish


Bon Appetit!  🙂

Lizzie’s Pork & Veal Meatballs

There is nothing on this planet that can’t be enhanced by the addition of meatballs.  They are one of our favourite things to eat and I make them on a regular basis.  We eat them in tomato sauce with pasta, I make big fat ones that go beautifully with mashed potatoes and gravy.  I also make these smaller ones which are perfect to drop into a soup or just scoff as a snack.  My huband eats them as they are coming out of the pan…

A kilo of mince will make around 40 meatballs.  They freeze very well…  Enjoy!

Pork & Veal Meatballs




1 kilogram of pork & veal mince

2 slices of bread soaked in milk

3 tablespoons of tomato sauce

Large handful of grated parmesan cheese

½ cup finely chopped parsley

½ teaspoon of freshly grated nutmeg

Salt & pepper to taste

Butter for frying


Soak the bread in a bowl until soft and mushy then squeeze out most of the milk

Add to the minced pork and veal along with the rest of the ingredients seasoning with salt and pepper to taste

Using your hands, mix everything together thoroughly

Using wet hands scoop out a small amount of mince mixture and roll into a meatball between your palms.

They should be about the size of a large walnut but can be any size you want really…

Heat a generous amount of butter in a large pan and when sizzling, gently put the meatballs in

Cook over a medium heat taking care not to burn the butter and shaking the meatballs from time to time. Use tongs to flip them over if necessary

They should take around 8-10 minutes to cook through

Drain on paper towels before serving…


Bon Appetit! 🙂

Garlic Prawn Pasta with Chilli & Basil

There is nothing as delicious as Garlic Prawns.  Add these to pasta and you have heaven in a bowl.

This recipe is so quick and easy especially if, like me, you keep a large bag of green prawn cutlets in the freezer.  I leave them out for an hour or two to defrost or run under cold water – they are so so handy to use and help to create many different dishes…

Ingredients Garlic Prawn and Basil pasta

This dish can be whipped up in the time it takes to boil up the pasta.  I have everything chopped and ready to toss in when the pasta is draining.  For extra heat you can leave in the seeds of the chilli if desired…

The freshness of the basil and the sweetness of the baby tomatoes make this a beautifully fragrant pasta and I will make it again and again…  The quantities below make enough for two bowls…

Garlic Prawn Chilli and Basil Pasta


Spaghetti or linguine

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

12 green prawn cutlets

1 long red chilli deseeded and chopped

2 large garlic cloves grated

6 baby Roma tomatoes finely chopped

4 spring onions finely sliced

½ cup shredded Basil

Salt & black pepper to taste


Cook the pasta in a large saucepan of salted boiling water until al dente

In the meantime heat a generous lug of good olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat.

Add the prawns and cook, stirring occasionally, for a few minutes or until prawns change colour.

Add the chilli and garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until aromatic.

Add the pasta, tomato, green shallot and basil to the prawns and gently toss until well combined and heated through.

Drizzle with the remaining oil and gently toss until well combined.

Season with salt and black pepper to taste

Bon Appetit!  🙂


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