Kooee! Grass Fed Jerky

kooee-jerky

My husband is a huge fan of chilli and has been exploring how hot he can handle it. We were looking forward to trying the two spicy flavours of Kooee! Jerky.

We rated the Habenero chilli as 4.5 out 5 hot, while the smoked chipotle was rated a more moderate 2.5 out of 5 hot. This Tasmanian-based company makes beef jerky in other flavours, like classic sea salt and native mountain pepperberry. They use Tasmanian beef which is raised free-range and 100% grass-fed, which might explain why the beef jerky is so tasty.

The Kooee! beef jerky is a high protein, paleo-friendly and gluten free snack. It doesn’t contain soy, gluten, added sugar, preservatives or GMO products like some of the jerky you will find in the supermarket.

kooee-jerky-bowl

I love eating jerky and this one is definitely moreish. I found myself finishing a whole packet in one sitting! The slices of dehydrated beef offer a nice balance between the spicy chipotle, coconut aminos, apple cider vinegar and sea salt.

The jerky is healthy and convenient to carry around with you, so you could put it in your backpack for bushwalking or take it to work. Each 30g packet contains 15g of protein. The meat is easy to chew through and bite off because it is cut against the grain. You won’t feel like you are chewing like a cow!

Kooee! Beef Jerky is produced in small amounts and is sold at the Hobart Farmers Markets and Launceston Farmers Markets. It’s lucky that you can order Kooee! Beef Jerky from their online shop at www.kooeesnacks.com.au.

How to cook toasted cheese and chilli relish sandwich

toasted-cheese

Ok, here’s another easy one I just wanted to knock off my list of recipes for Learning how to cook with Delia Smith challenge. It’s a toasted cheese and chilli relish sandwich, instead of the chilli relish I used a tomato chutney and boy is it a great combination. I’m glad I tried it, even if it was one of the simplest recipes in the book. Delia calls it “a vegetarian version of Croque Monsieur”.

Delia’s Complete How to Cook – Fishpond.com.au (Australia)
Delia’s Complete How to Cook – Book Depository (UK)

Written for the Learning how to cook with Delia Smith challenge

How to cook spaghetti with olive oil, garlic and chilli

delia-spaghetti-olive-oil

The second recipe I cooked for my Learning how to cook with Delia Smith challenge was Spaghetti with olive oil, garlic and chilli. Now if you look closely at the photo you may think that’s a lot of chilli, but actually since I’m allergic (well, intolerant) to chilli I used capsicum instead.

I’ve cooked pasta plenty of times before but I read Delia’s instructions and followed them as closely as I could. One thing I have stopped doing is salting the water, as we doesn’t like much salt in our diet. But in this instance I did and didn’t really notice any difference. I made enough pasta for one for lunch today. I got garlic all over my fingers, but I don’t mind the smell.

I was tempted to test the pasta by seeing if it would stick to the wall when it was al dente, but I’ve recently cleaned the tiles above the stove top so I gave it a miss. I don’t want to clean them again so soon! Anyhow, Delia says the “only real way to tell is to taste it.”

So that I only had one pan to clean up I slightly deviated from Delia’s instructions. I cooked the pasta first and then made the sauce in the same saucepan, while the pasta drained in the sink.

I love Delia’s instructions on how to eat spaghetti and other long pasta. I pretty much do what she suggests, but the olive oil dripped down my chin! Sometimes I like to use a fork to twirl the pasta around on the bottom of a spoon. I think it’s authentic, but perhaps that’s a myth.

Delia’s Complete How to Cook – Fishpond.com.au (Australia)
Delia’s Complete How to Cook – Book Depository (UK)

Written for the Learning how to cook with Delia Smith challenge

Organic pest control recipes

pest_detective

It’s important to think of your backyard as a mini ecosystem where all the elements need to be balanced. So when you do get an invasion of pests, the predator bugs will deal with them in a few days and keep their numbers down. Some times the best solution is just to sit back and let nature sort itself out.

If that doesn’t work, then you can make your own pest control solutions with these organic recipes:

Chilli soap mix – Aphids
Add a generous handful of hot chilies and a tablespoon of pure soap flakes to a litre of hot water and puree in a blender. Strain the mixture through  a stocking. Spray directly onto the aphids and they will quickly die. Several applications may be necessary for particularly bad infestations.

Coffee spray – Slugs and snails
Dilute one part strong espresso coffee to ten parts water and spray it liberally over the foliage of plants that are being eaten by slugs and snails, and on the soil around their base. When the pests travel across the coffee mixture, they absorb it and quickly die.

Milk spray – Fungal diseases, including powdery mildew
Combine one part organic milk to ten parts water and cover the upper and lower surfaces of the leaves and stems thoroughly. This can be used as a preventative measure during humid conditions which favour mildews.

Vegetable oil soap mix – Mites and scale
Blend 2 cups of vegetable oil with half a cup of pure liquid soap and mix thoroughly. Dilute one tablespoon of the mix with a litre of water and spray over infestations. The pests will suffocate and soon die.

Do you have any tried and true organic pest contol methods?

I’m allergic to chilli and paprika

I tell people I’m allergic to chilli and they just don’t get it. They think I don’t like spicy food. Actually I love spicy food and used to love the taste of chilli in curries. Fortunately, I don’t have a life threatening true allergy to chilli, it’s an intolerance. I do, however, get terrible double-over tummy cramps if I eat anything with chilli or paprika in it.

Many companies have started to add chilli to their food to add flavour (especially ones that are trying to reduce fat, salt and sugar levels). Even though the food labelling laws are fairly good in Australia, it can be listed under a generic label of “spices”, which incidentally can also include MSG. It is possible to contact the company and find out precisely what the ingredients of a particular product are and I have found the majority of companies I have contacted very helpful.

Although I have had people lie to me about what is in their food. I can’t believe how ignorant people are about allergies and intolerances.

Here are some of the foods that I’ve learnt to be careful with:

  • Beetroot, tinned – containing spices. Edgell sliced beetroot in a tin is safe.
  • Greek restaurants – often sprinkle paprika over their meat, including kebabs.
  • Grill’d burgers – contain spices. They did not reply to my email to say if it was chilli or not.
  • Herbamare Spicy – contains chilli. The Original version is safe.
  • KFC – original and hot’n’spicy chicken, bbq sauces. Chips are safe.
  • McDonalds – most of their burgers contain spices.
  • The Meating Place – 100% beef sausages actually contain paprika. Their 100% pork sausages contain nutmeg.
  • Mustard – often contains spices.
  • Nandos – cross-contamination
  • Olives and pickles- often contain spices. Be wary of spoon swapping in delis and at the markets. Sandhurt Sicilian green olives are safe.
  • Red food colouring – often listed as natural as it’s paprika.
  • Red Rooster – the stuffing and the seasoning on the chicken contains spices. Ask for no salt on the chips and add your own.
  • Salami
  • Seasonings – Masterfood’s All Purpose Seasoning, Chicken Salt, Italian Herbs, Pizza Topper, etc