Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Wednesdays with Donna Hay - Roasted Pistachio and Honey Yoghurt and Smoked Ham and Cheese Toasties

Hooray!  I am so excited, because my blogging buddy, Kayte of Grandma's Kitchen Table, and I are going to be making Donna Hay recipes together this year, and posting the results on Wednesdays.  Kayte is from Indiana in the US, so it will be double the fun to watch her post exactly the same thing as me all those miles away and approximately 16 hours or so apart!  (As I write this on a Tuesday evening, it is currently an obscenely early hour on Tuesday morning in Kayte's part of the world - hopefully she is still asleep.)

Kayte first suggested last year that if I had the same Donna Hay book as she did, we could both make things together out of it.  I didn't have the book, so time ticked by, but the end of Tuesdays with Dorie gave me the kick I needed to raise it again with Kayte.  In time, we may go to one of Donna's fabulous books, but for now, we have decided (Kayte's suggestion) to cook recipes from Donna Hay's website.  For the uninitiated, Donna Hay is a phenomenal Aussie foodwriter, food stylist and cook; you can read more about her here.

On to the recipes!

Week 1 is breakfast, and was actually last week, but I was away from my own kitchen, so I am catching up this week.  Kayte chose Roasted Pistachio and Honey Yoghurt - you can see Kayte's post, which includes the recipe, here.

My version is pictured at the top of this post, served in a martini glass a la Mad Men (I would love to look like Joan Holloway in another life!).  I used roasted pistachios and passionfruit yoghurt.  I may have been a little heavy on the honey, as my nuts sank right into it.  (See Kayte's version for nice layers.) 

My Christmas present to me was a DSLR camera - you can see from the yoghurt shot that although my photos should get better, I have a way to go.  (Gotta love the auto-focus though - makes life so much easier.)

This week's Wednesday with Donna Hay (it rhymes!) is lunch - and I chose Smoked Ham and Cheese Toasties:

You can't see it that well in the photo, but these decadent toasties have Dijon mustard, smoked ham and grated cheese on one side, and cheese sauce on the other side - oh so good!  I had to flood the pan with the leftover cheese sauce, because I kept dipping my finger in to eat it as is! I used light Coon cheese instead of Swiss cheese, but otherwise made the recipe as suggested. 

The only catch with these toasties is that you need to make my nemesis, the roux, to make the cheese sauce.  I tried to use an ordinary saucepan first up to make the sauce instead of a heavy bottomed pan (because I didn't have a small one).  This was a disaster - the roux burned.  Luckily, I was making this recipe for one and didn't get past the first step, so there wasn't any harm done, and I ended up making the tiniest amount of cheese sauce in a whopping great pan.

Go visit Kayte in a few hours time to see what she thought of these toasties - and check out her fab nutty honey yoghurt.

Next week: Dinner - Sticky chicken parcels