As many of you know, one of my favourite pastimes is cooking smoko for our family and anyone else who is working on our property. Smoko is often delivered to the paddock with tea and coffee served in enamel cups around the back of the ute. Everyone has a breather and for some, a quiet cigarette. There was a time when we might have 3-4 extras helping us to muster sheep or goats or to sort out mobs of cattle or to build a new fence or pipeline.
Sadly, this smoko ritual has become a rare event. Due to the drought we have very low stock numbers and work is drying up for itinerant and casual staff. Major infrastructure projects have been put on hold while our resources are going into keeping our small number of animals alive.
I haven’t written much about the drought because it is getting plenty of coverage and honestly, it can all be rather exhausting. But it really is the little things that I miss. Like the structure and purpose that stock work and smoko deliveries bring to my day.
So, to brighten things up and in the spirit of sharing I have published my five favourite smoko recipes. These have all been cooked many times using basic pantry staples. Some are not even really recipes but it just feels nice to put them together in one place.
And just because you can never have enough reliable recipes, some of you may have seen that the Farmer Cookbook has recently been launched. It really is a beautiful book, full of comforting recipes, genuine stories and vibrant photography. I can still hardly believe that our daughter Annabelle appears on the front cover.
I hope you are reading or cooking or harvesting today.
If you get a chance to try any of these please let me know.
Happy Sunday, friends x
- 125 g butter softened to room temp
- 175 g brown (raw) sugar
- 1 egg
- 150 g plain flour sifted
- 150 g self raising flour sifted
- 200 g dark cooking chocolate chopped
Preheat oven to 200°C. Line two large baking trays with oven proof baking paper. Mix butter and sugar together in a bowl until smooth and creamy.
Add egg to butter mixture and mix again until smooth.
Stir flours and chocolate into the butter mixture. If the mixture seems a little dry, gently bring it together with clean hands. The warmth from your hands will be just enough to combine the mixture.
Roll tablespoons of mixture into balls, flatten slightly. Place balls onto lined trays. Bake for 15 minutes until slightly browned. Cool on wire racks.
- 3 bread rolls split and toasted
- 6 rashers bacon
- 4 eggs
- 2 tbsp milk
- salt and pepper to taste
- butter to taste
Cook bacon in a medium to hot pan until cooked through and crispy.
Combine eggs and milk in a bowl or jug and gently whisk. Heat a heavy based, non stick pan until hot. Pour egg mixture into pan and cook until set or to your liking. Remove pan from the heat and slice cooked omelette into triangles.
Butter the toasted rolls and fill them with cooked bacon and omelette and top with salt, pepper and other condiments to taste. Serve while still warm.
- 500 g sausage mince
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tbsp tomato sauce
- 1 tsp cumin ground
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 sheets frozen puff pastry thawed
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp milk
- 1 tbsp nigella seeds or sesame seeds, optional
Preheat oven to 200°C. Line two large baking trays with oven proof baking paper.
In a large bowl combine sausage mince, sauces, cumin, salt and pepper.
Cut each piece of pastry in half. Place a strip (like a long sausage) of mince along the centre of each pastry piece. Roll to enclose with the seam underneath.
Cut the sausage rolls into required lengths using a sharp knife and place on baking trays. Combine the egg and milk and whisk together. Using a pastry brush, brush the tops of the rolls with egg and milk mixture. Top the rolls with a sprinkle of seeds, if using.
Bake for around 25 minutes or until golden and cooked through. Serve warm with plenty of tomato sauce.
- 300 g self raising flour sifted
- pinch salt
- 90 g castor sugar
- 1 egg
- milk to mix
- oil for cooking
Place flour, salt and sugar in a bowl and stir to combine.
Drop egg into the flour mixture and stir to combine. Gradually add enough milk to make a thick, smooth batter.
Heat a heavy based, non stick pan until hot. Spread a few drop of cooking oil around the pan. Drop several large spoonfuls of mixture into the pan.
Cook until bubbles appear and then flip the pikelet and cook until both sides are golden brown. Continue to cook until all of the batter is used. You may need to adjust the heat of the pan either up or down as the pikelets cook.
Serve warm or cold with jam, honey or cream.
- 500 g refridgerated pizza dough OR
- 2-3 sheets frozen puff pastry thawed
- 1 cup tomato paste
- toppings such as chopped tomato, capsicum, bacon, salami, olive or grated cheese
Preheat oven to 220°C. Line two large baking trays with oven proof baking paper.
If using pizza dough. On a lightly floured, clean bench top, roll out pizza dough with a rolling pin to desired thickness.
If using pizza dough or puff pastry, cut out the required amount of pizzas using a round scone or biscuit cutter. Place rounds onto prepared trays.
Spread each round thinly with tomato paste. Sprinkle each round with toppings of choice, finishing with grated cheese.
Cook for 15-20 minutes or until the bases are golden and the ingredients are cooked through. Serve warm. Top with a sprinkle of fresh herbs such as thyme if you are feeling fancy.
If you don't have your own favourite pizza dough this Jamie Oliver recipe is always reliable.