Author Archives for Erin

About Erin

Writer, Eater, Mother. Happy person who is often angry. Lives in Canberra, (the capital of) Australia.

Family-friendly meal: Cheesy Porcupine Meatballs

My family has eaten a LOT of meatballs lately, as I’ve made this recipe over and over to test out the ingredients. Luckily, they love it! My mother reminded me a while ago that she used to make these when I was a child, which prompted me to have a go at making them (with hidden vegetables, of course). My kids stick their forks into them whole and eat them like lollipops.

Although the meatballs take a little preparation, the dish is quite easy to cook. The meatballs cook in the sauce, so there’s no standing over the cook-top trying to ‘brown the meatballs on all sides’. I’m notoriously bad at frying meatballs, and usually end up with meat-cubes.

This dish also has a bolognese-style flavour, so if the kids love bolognese (and the adults, because who doesn’t?), but you want something a little different or less pasta-heavy, this might be a good one to try. The Thermomix recipe is also below the regular recipe. Continue reading

How we use social media could make or break us

I got a haircut recently, and my hairdresser and I had a big old whinge together about how Facebook has become a nasty place that sometimes makes us hate the world, a little bit.

I’m the first to say I generally enjoy social media. I use it and value it – there are clearly so many benefits; for connecting people and communities, for sharing a range of views and ideas, and even for supporting social change. Two years ago I wrote about how social media campaigns can have an impact, by influencing social networks on issues like same-sex marriage, through simple mechanisms like the rainbow profile picture campaign. How sad, by the way, that two years later we STILL aren’t there, Australia…

But it feels like a nastier place lately. The comments sections on Facebook particularly, have always been fraught, but now they seem soul-sucking, showcasing the worst of our tendencies towards blame, spite, and an inability to consider other viewpoints. It’s like the new outlet for road-rage. Continue reading

A winter dessert (or breakfast!): Pear, Ginger and Macadamia Crumble Pots

Come winter, I’m a bit of a crumble fiend. Especially with dollop cream. In the past, I couldn’t often be bothered to make it, because I found the process of rubbing butter into flour too involved and messy. I have this irrational idea that if I have to get the flour out of the pantry, it’s all going to be too much effort.

An earlier round of the IQS program introduced an apple crumble which used a combination of almond meal and oats in the topping, and it has revolutionised my crumble-making. Plus, the addition of oats makes it breakfast-friendly, in my book. πŸ˜‰ Rani from You Totally Got This also uses this topping in her baked apple crumble – check it out, it’s an easy and delicious family sized dessert.

These pear, ginger and macadamia crumble pots use no added sweetener at all – I feel that pears are sweet enough already. They are simple and quick to make, requiring very few ingredients. I opt for individual servings so I don’t over-indulge. (That’s a lie: it’s actually so my husband doesn’t eat more than his fair share!) Plus, you could double the recipe and make a couple of extra pots, to store in the fridge for breakfast. Continue reading

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