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What's For Tea This Week?

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Sabine Schneider
Sabine Schneider

Deciding what's for tea is almost as trying as the cooking process itself. That's why every Sunday I'll post a list of suggestions for the week following. Pick and choose, be adventurous and try something new. If you don't know how to cook something or have a suggestion just drop me a line.

Mashed potatoes, minted peas, a couple of poached eggs and caramelised onions. Serve with baby spinach or rocket leaves and hollandaise if you can be bothered. (Boil some extra potatoes and keep them in the fridge until Wednesday.)
Summer salad: Make the most of the rest of summer. Slice up finely some red onion, coloured peppers and red or green cabbage leaves. Quarter tomatoes and dice a cucumber. Put all vegies into a large bowl. That’s your basig salad. Now you can have a look in the fridge or garden and add some boiled green beans, a handful of shredded carrot, slices of avocado, spring onions, radishes, baby spinach or rocket or other lettuce. Drizzle with the dressing you made last week and serve with fresh ciabatta.  
Stuffed sausages: Boil some good-quality sausages and then pan fry them until golden. Let cool slightly. Make a vertical cut along the sausage and set aside. Take the potatoes from Monday and slice them into a saucepan. Add some hot milk, a tablespoon butter and mash until smooth. Dice some bacon and onion and brown in a frypan. Mix with mashed potatoes, add some grated cheese, diced tomatoes and season well with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Stuff sausages with this mix and grill until golden. Serve with fresh tomato salsa or a grand green salad and a chutney of your choice.
Zucchini soup with crusty bread: Cut zucchini into chunks and gently saute in some butter until tender. Add good-quality stock and bring to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper. Puree with a blender, sprinkle with a little shredded mint and serve with some crusty sourdough.
Chicken nibbles in apricot sauce: Mix up some plain flour, salt, pepper and Moroccan spice mix. Cut up some dried apricots, put into a saucepan. Add some sugar (optional), Moroccan spice mix and water and boil until tender and a little thickened. Put free-range chicken nibbles into a bowl, sprinkle with the flour mix and toss to coat. Fry nibbles in some olive oil until golden and cooked through. Add apricot sauce. Serve with rice and cucumber salad.
Pasta with blue-vein cheese and walnuts: Dry roast some walnuts and set aside. Mix cream and good-quality stock and bring to a simmer. Add chunks of blue-vein cheese and stir to melt. Season with salt and plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Add most of the walnuts. Cook some pasta until al dente. Toss with sauce until pasta is well coated. Garnish with more walnuts and serve.
Home-made pizza: Make a yeast dough (a couple of cups of flour, a level teaspoon salt, a teaspoon of fast-acting yeast and enough water to make a not-too-stiff dough. Knead for a minute or so – you can do this with one hand, while the other holds the bowl. Cover with a damp teatowel and let sit for half an hour – if you have that much time. After that punch your fist into the middle of the dough to deflate and pull into two or three pieces the size of a tennisball.) Place pieces either on greased pizza trays or on a tray lined with baking paper (one per tray). Flatten with your fingers and press until quite thin and big as a large dinner plate.
If you happen to have some home-cooked tomato sauce take a couple of tablespoons per pizza and spread evenly on the dough. If not, just take tomato paste or tomato sauce from a can or bottle. Sprinkle with some oregano. Place toppings of your choice on the sauce – sliced mushrooms are nice, salami is great, I like flaked tuna, wilted spinach or sliced bell peppers, and also capers, olives and anchovies. Thinly sliced cloves of garlic for those who love it. Sprinkle with grated cheese and bake at full blast until done, app 7-12 minutes.
Topping the pizzas could involve everybody: Just put toppings in individual bowls and let everyone help themselves.
Cheat pizza – no, not the stuff that poses as pizza and comes frozen in shrink wrap! Just buy a loaf of ciabatta, cut open lengthwise and top as described above. It’s way faster and not half as cakey as the commercial stuff.


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