My favourite Soul Food recipe

There are times I wish I had more time to prepare dinner (don’t we all!) and especially during this very interesting time of lockdown…. I think that I have so much time in the day to prepare a wholesome dinner for the family. Then the hours just pass by… with homeschooling, tidying up, running a business… I know that we are all feeling overwhelmed by lockdown, so we have to just do what we can.

Today I felt like a warm, home-cooked dinner… time was not on my side and I still had a long list of ‘To-Do’s’ to finish. I remembered my easy recipe of what our family calls Sausage Italian – loaded with vegetables, protein and our super versatile Pauli’s Tomali Relish (a slow cooked Italian style tomato relish). You can add any vegetables that you have in the fridge like broccoli, spinach, peppers, cauliflower, butternut.

Recipe:

800 g sausage (lamb, beef or pork), cut into 4 cm pieces

1/2 an onion, chopped

1 carrot, diced

4 cabbage leaves, shredded

3 baby marrow, diced

A handful of frozen peas

1 can of brown lentils

1 can Italian chopped tomatoes

3 tablespoons of Pauli’s Tomali Relish

Smoked paprka

A splash of olive oil

Salt and Pepper to taste

Serve with rice, mash or cauliflower rice

Method:

In a wok or heavy based pan/pot – heat the oil and add the onion and carrots and other vegetables. Stir and cook together to brown the veggies on medium heat for about 3 minutes. I love the smell of onions cooking – and this is when the kids know that something good is coming their way.

Add the sausages and stir together. Brown the sausages and cook all the ingredients together for another 3 minutes. Add the Pauli’s Tomali (if you have it available) and then add the lentils, stir again, add the can of tomatoes, salt, pepper and paprika. Give it one more stir to blend all the ingredients together and then put the lid on. Leave to simmer on a low heat, stirring occasionally, and cook for about 25 minutes.

The Pauli’s Tomali adds a rich, robust flavour – like a flavoursome tomato gravy. This meal is so satisfying – there are never any leftovers.

Enjoy and stay safe!

Yours in Good Food, Dianne

I have just added the sausages and about to start browning them together with the other ingredients.

Kimchi Anyone?

A friend made a great suggestion during one of our online book club chats…. She challenged us to share some recipes on using ‘leftover / waste’ food. For example, a potato skin recipe. In this way, we could repurpose our food when we need it most…. during lockdown…. to ensure minimum waste in our kitchens. While we haven’t gotten around to making something with our potato skins (I love this idea, I am definitely going to try something here… suggestions welcome) – we did make a homemade Kimchi using vegetables from our fridge, especially those veggies that weren’t planning on hanging around for much longer.

A quick search on Google will offer many health benefits of Kimchi, to list a few:

  • It is nutrient dense while low in calories
  • Contains probiotics which are good for boosting your immune system
  • May reduce inflammation
  • May slow ageing (bring it on!)
  • May prevent yeast infections
  • Source: www.healthline.com

We have a simple way to make Kimchi in your own kitchen – using whatever vegetables and fruit you have available. Here goes… from the pen of Pauli:

Pauli’s Easy Stay At Home Kimchi

The really fun part of this recipe is that this is a guide, you can crank up whatever parts you want to make it for your own palate. 

I have used various greens with the cabbage, to preserve wilting greens in the fridge. Apples also really add to the flavour, and you can substitute sugar for honey. 

Have fun and reduce the waste, by making something tasty and really good for your health too. 

Please let me know how it worked out for you. 

Stay Home Stay Safe – yours in Good Food, Pauli and Di.

IngredientAmountNotes
Stage 1:
Cabbage200gThinly sliced (Have fun and mix them up)
Carrots80gJulienne the carrots
Salt1 *Tbsp*Tbsp = Tablespoon **tsp = teaspoon
Sugar/Honey1 **tspIf you want it sweeter then add more.
Method:
Add the sugar and salt into the cabbage and macerate (soften together); add the carrots in a bowl until the cabbage starts to wilt.
Stage 2:
Chopped Chilies2-4 chiliesDepending on how hot you want it
Red Pepper40gChop or julienne the peppers
Herbs10gAdd any herbs that you have
Ginger10gFinely sliced or chopped, you can even used picked Ginger (ginger used for Sushi)
Chilli Flakes1 Tbsp
Fish Sauce1 tsp
Soy Sauce1 tsp
Sesame Seed Oil1/4 tsp
Rice Vinegar1 tspYou can use pretty much any vinegar you like
Thai Lime Juice1 tspOr fresh lemon juice, whatever citrus you have
Method:
Mix it all together put it into a storage container and leave out overnight, this will ensure a great flavour, then refrigerate and eat with everything!

Family Gatherings

I have a very big family. My Mom is one of 7 children, my Dad is one of 6. My late maternal Grandmother. Rita, is one of 11 children! I have cousins, aunts and uncles all over the world – and I am close to all 18 of my first cousins. I feel very lucky to be part of my family, and it is a family that continues to grow – as weddings and births are celebrated.

My sister gave birth to my precious nephew during lockdown. We live in the same city but I can’t visit them – meet my little Godson; and make my sister a cup of tea and give her love. This is very hard – for us all. My Mom isn’t able to meet him either. I remember that when I gave birth to my two children, the most comforting feeling was having my mom stay with us for a week – because Moms know best!

Today, would have been Rita’s 90th birthday. We have celebrated so many birthdays together as a family; everyone traveling from their various cities and countries to be together in one place. When I was a child, we would all get together on a Sunday and have lunch at Rita’s house. The adults would sit under the big, shady Mulberry tree, someone swaying in the hammock; while the children ran around the garden or played in the tree house. You can imagine Christmas lunches together! Lots of people, an abundance of food, presents, multiple conversations, laughter and of course the obligatory paper fight across the table. Every few years, a new addition would be added to the celebration.

These memories will forever be etched in my mind as great ones! And we have been lucky to carry on this tradition with our own children, the new generation. I remember Rita’s 80th birthday like it was yesterday. My son was only 4 months old, and Rita got to meet her first great-grandchild, Max.

Today, many of the family got together via the Zoom App to celebrate Rita’s birthday. It was great to ‘see’ everyone and it was just like a family gathering – talking over each other, tea drinking and laughter.

But when we were finished – I felt an immense sadness. I had always just taken these gatherings for granted. They just happened. And now they can’t happen in person, for a while I think, while the COVID-19 pandemic keeps us in lockdown. I am grateful for technology, but there is nothing quite like the happy noise of a big family gathering. Happy Birthday Rita!

Yours in good food and lots of love, Dianne

dianne@paulisfood.com