Thursday, 1 November 2012

So I've made some of Australian Women's Weekly Tuna, sour cream and chive dip from their book "Picnics" and didn't feel like doing just a sandwich. As it's supposed to be a dip I decided we'll do both!

So Hungry Hubby has tuna dip, crudités, pizza topped focaccia (fresh focaccia topped with tomato and cheese). So Hungry Hubby can either assemble his own sandwich or use it as a dip. Because we have so much carbs that he doesn't get a treat but fruit instead. A strawberry kiwi fruit salad would have been perfect but as Hungry Hubby isn't fond of either (and I've eaten all the strawberries already) he gets a mixture of green and red grapes. At least I'm sticking to the same colours. 

  Home-made Pie Recipes!

My lunch box is the same, just a bit less, so instead I thought I would rather ask a favour from you: I really want to prepare some nice pies. Ones I can prepare a whole lot from and freeze them either raw or cooked.

Tuna, Sour Cream & Chive Dip

From Women's Weekly Picnics we find this wonderful recipe. I've adapted it a bit by also adding Italian Parsley. It's amazing with a hint of lemon and salty from the tuna. This is also scrumptious on bread as a tuna salad sandwich.

125g cream cheese softened
185g tuna chunks in oil
1 tbsp horseradish cream
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup sour cream
Pinch castor sugar
2 tbsp chopped chives
1/2 tsp lemon rind grated

1. Blend cream cheese, horseradish, tuna, juice, sour cream & sugar until smooth. Add chives & rind.

2. Sprinkle with extra chives and serve with veggies etc.


Wednesday, 31 October 2012

As you can see, my rendition of the Frankenstein Monster Kitkat's don't look nearly as captivating as Dash Magazine's but they do taste amazingly good. We don't have peanut butter cups so I used Rolo's instead (it's a caramel filled chocolate cup). So with that tasty message:

Happy Halloween!!

Because it's Halloween, I've used it as an excuse for a naughtier lunch. Still fruit but more treats (it's not like Hungry Hubby can go trick or treating...) So for lunch Hungry Hubby has a mini chiabata roll with basil pesto, steak and roasted veggies, mango and pineapple chunks, crunchies (for a morning snack) and natural jelly beans. The photo is a bit fuzzy but you get the idea.

My lunch is a bit different: I have the same roll (lovingly prepared by Hungry Hubby with my strict instructions ;), crunchies, mango, pineapple, red & green grapes but no jelly beans (I have to watch my figure you know).

Hope you enjoy your day and don't have too many treats... but a glass of wine or two is allowed!

Halloween treats

Unfortunately, Halloween isn't such a huge celebration in South Africa and it really is a shame as there are so many treats out there that will make wonderful lunch box treats. From spider cookies, Frankenstein marshmallow treats to graveyard brownies. We don't have that many of America's sweets either such as candy corn or peanut butter cups. Worst of all we don't have canned pumpkin that would make pumpkin cheesecake sooo easy!

So what I need from you guys, is a cute and easy treat I can put in Hungry Hubby's lunch box for tomorrow such as these pretty KitKat Frankenstein Fingers from Dash Magazine

So please help me and post or email me photos and/or recipes you can share. As always please include you names and where you and your recipe is from.

May you have a Hauntingly good Halloween!


Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Last night we had Chicken Satay with Noodles for supper (the recipe is adapted from a Martha Stewart recipe I've posted) and since we had some extra noodles left over I decided to put it to use...

...so, for lunch we're having 'Satay Noodles', sugar-snap peas, cantaloupe, honeydew melon, red grapes, brie cheese and biscuits.

My lunch is the same (can you believe it? For a change I only had to think up one lunch!), only a little bit less than Hungry Husband's. since our lunches are the same I decided to rather show Hungry Husband's sticker for tomorrow:

Chicken Satay and Noodles

Drawing inspiration from another of my hero's, Martha Stewart. Her dish is made with Chicken and her satay sauce is (obviously) made from scratch. I give my adaptation first and then Martha's satay sauce recipe at the end as not everyone will have access to the same products.

Firstly the product that I used, Deli Diva's Satay Sauce. Everything already done. It includes the most important ingredients and it's is freshly made with ginger, garlic, chili, peanut butter vinegar, sugar and soy sauce! Find them with this link.


500g mini chicken fillets
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp golden syrup
1 tsp ginger grated
1 tsp chili

3 packets 2-min noodles (beef flavour discarding 2 flavour packets)
2 tbsp smooth peanut butter
2 tbsp satay sauce
2 tsp chopped fresh parsley or coriander


To prepare the chicken: toss everything in a bowl and allow to marinate for as long as possible. Soak wooden satay sticks in water for 15 min.

To prepare noodles: place 3 packets 2-min noodles and one flavour packet in a bowl and cover with bowling water. Microwave for 4 minutes, stirring often. When done add peanut butter and satay sauce. Stir until melted and combined. If it is too dry add more water. Add chopped parsley and let stand for a few minutes.

To finish chicken: string the chicken onto the satay sticks. Barbecue, braai or pan fry the chicken until done to your liking.

It's quite heavy so serve with a fresh Italian salad with French dressing. The chicken is also very good on its own with just a salad.

Martha Steward's recipe:

Meanwhile, in a blender, purée 1 tablespoon lime juice, 3/4 teaspoon sugar, and 1 teaspoon ginger with peanut butter and 1/3 cup water. Season with remaining soy sauce. Add to noodles.

For the full recipe click here


Monday, 29 October 2012

It's almost Christmas time can you believe it? How can I make such a statement in October? Well, because I just attended the most amazing Christmas Gift Market. Bought some amazing goodies such as these cute stickers (they have them for love ones, children and husbands) and bamboo fork and knives sets (which is the extras in Hungry Hubby's lunch box:

Hungry Hubby's lunch tomorrow's Ploughman's Platter with a Twist: gypsy ham, sharp cheddar, piccalilli (home-made by my mother-in-law Louana), an amazing new find: mascarpone cheese with figs and walnuts, olives, watermelon and of course hummus with carrots. We also have chilli bites and ciabatta.

My lunch is a bit different: I have some grapes and dried mango, laughing cow cheese triangles and spicy dip instead of piccalilli. It's an assemble your own lunch tomorrow.


Mexican Cooking Class!

What an amazing night and so many ideas for the lunch box! Held in Durbanville, Cape Town at The Little Pink Chef and I have never had so much fun while cooking!

On the menu we had: 

Jalapeño Poppers 
(with the biggest poppers I've ever seen!), 
Chilli Con Carne Nachos,  
Chicken Enchiladas
and for dessert:
deep fried Mexican Cheesecake!

Some photo so you can see what we made:


I ordered some of the jalpeños for Hungry Hubby's lunch box (we both love poppers and these really are the best) and will be doing the Chilli in baked tortilla cups soon. We had so much fun we're already booking our next class! If only we could decide between Italian and Indian...

Ps how good does Hungry Hubby look in a kitchen? If any one is interested, please email Maryke or visit her website. And a big thank you to Leon van Heerden for some of the photo's.


Friday, 26 October 2012

For Friday we're doing boerewors (South African sausage) and meatballs (Australian Junior Masterchef recipe adapted). Hungry Hubby has his with mini multiple-seed rolls, spicy dip and 'rainbow salad'. Rainbow salad is basically shredded raw beetroot, carrot and lettuce with sliced celery. For treat we have mixed nuts, dried mango and some candied ginger in dark chocolate.

The only difference with my lunch is I eat my rolls for breakfast so mine has butter and chocolate spread on (easy to eat on the way to work) and I think it's better to have the carbs for breakfast. It's probably not the healthiest breakfast but sine I usually don't eat any breakfast, I think this is better than nothing. I then have the sausage & meatballs and rainbow salad for lunch with the dip and the dried fruit and grapes  at about 3-4 pm when I usually get hungry again.

Hungry Hubby sometimes eats his whole lunch box before 11 am! So I have to keep that in mind when I pack his lunch box.

Australian Junior Masterchef Meatballs

As we are from South Africa, Australia is our rugby 'mortal' enemies together with New Zealand in the tri-nations. But no matter how hard we tend to support against Australia when it comes to rugby, I can't help but always look to the Wallabies for inspiration, feast and leadership when it comes to food. If it isn't Women's Weekly, Easy Food or the extremely addictive Junior Masterchef then it is the many other shows, publications and websites to guide you alone the culinary path to celebration. 

This recipes is adapted from the Junior Masterchef show, where youngsters cooked these meatballs on rosemary sprigs with flat bread and carrot salad. To see the original recipe click here

2 tspcumin seeds 
2 tspcoriander seeds
Pinch of salt
1 tsp paprika
2 tbsproughly chopped parsley 
2 tbsp roughly chopped coriander
 ½ onion, chopped 
500g extra lean beef mince
1 egg
Zest of 1 lemon
Olive oil
    • For meatballs, heat a small frying pan over a medium heat. Roast cumin seeds, stirring with a wooden spoon until fragrant. Transfer cumin to a mortar and pestle. Roast coriander seeds in the same frying pan until fragrant and place into the mortar and pestle. Pound until spices form a fine powder. Stir in paprika and salt.
    • Process herbs, onion, beef, spice mix and zest into a food processor until mixture forms a smooth paste. Season with salt and pepper. Add egg and stir until combined.
    • Shape the mixture into balls and place into an oven safe casserole dish (prepared with a layer of olive oil).
    • Bake for 45-60 minutes in a preheated oven of 180°C. If the meatballs looks dry, merely pour some of the juices in the pan over the meatballs.

    Hungry Hubby made a big batch (yes Hungry Hubby was the main instigator behind making the meatballs!) and cooled them until they reach room temperature. I then froze batches for easy access.


    Want to share recipes?


    I've been informed that the comment section is too short or small to post recipes so for convenience (and to get everyone sharing their recipes!) I have decided to provide everyone with my email address. Please include your names, where you're from and where the recipe comes from (it's history) so I can give credit where credit is due.

    The same goes for when you want to inquire about one of my recipes (as I don't post all of them like my spag-bol above) all you have to do is ask!

    The comment sections (either below each post or on the dedicated comment page) are big enough for ideas so post them! Some ideas so far are mini meat loaf's and pies, mini cupcakes and for winter some soup ideas! Keep on sharing.

    Thursday, 25 October 2012

    Aargh! It's amazingly hard to think out some healthy lunches that don't just consist out of salads! If it has leaves I don't want it for lunch. Probably as most of our evening meals include a side salad. So now I do a half salad, in other words almost everything except the leaves.

    My Lunch box has an avo, grapefruit, red onion and chive salad (with the juice of the grapefruit to help the avo not to turn brown, salt and pepper) to enjoy with provitas and the laughing cow cheese triangle. Some tomato and cheese pizza fingers (as no one can be TOO healthy) and a kiwi fruit. I tend to just cut it in halve and eat with a teaspoon.

    Hungry Husband will perish if he had to eat as "little" as I do (I so wish that was true...) so he gets some of last night's left over spaghetti bolognese with a little cheese grated on top, some avo, red onion and chive salad with provitas and laughing cow cheese triangles and some of the pizza fingers.

    Looking at Hungry Hubby's lunch box I think I failed miserably in the 'healthy' department... In my own defence the bolognese is low fat with added veggies!

    A note about the lunch box and packing it

    For those of you that want to know a bit more about the lunch box itself, here is something to remember (and this goes for any lunch box really): when packing consider how the lunch box will be stored until lunch. Our lunch boxes comes in these nifty bags, which has a dual purpose. Firstly it can be carried easily by it's strap so you don't have to worry about the lunch box fitting into your bag (always an issue) and secondly if you place the lunch box in the fridge the night before, it keeps the contents cold until lunch! So no refrigeration needed!

    However as you carry the lunch box on its side, things can move around. I didn't pack that many goodies in mine last night and had a salami tasting mini blueberry muffin for tea... blegh.

    The small container supplied by Planetbox is secured in it's place by the lid when closed so it never moves, anything else however does. This wouldn't normally be too much of an issue unless you add sweet things with the salty things. What should I have done differently? I should have put the salami where the dried fruit are and the tomatoes and placed the dried fruit and nuts with the muffin and clusters in the big container. So you learn, right?

    If you're interested in procuring a Planetbox follow this link.


    Wednesday, 24 October 2012

    As Hungry Hubby's punishment for forgetting his lunch box at work is that he had to make his own sandwich for tomorrow! Okay, I still had to tell him what to make etc, but hopefully he won't forget his lunch box again...

    So here is Hungry Hubby's lunch:

    It is hummus with carrot stick and cucumber wedges, some laughing cow cheese wedges, dried fruit and nuts and a mini blueberry muffin. His 'sandwiches' are English muffins with pastrami and cheese. I wanted to add cucumber or something green but then he said he wanted to add a beer! So neither of us got what we wanted...

    My lunch: below

    I didn't feel like bread or any carby lunch so I went for dried fruit with extra mango and nuts, coconut clusters, mango yoghurt, laughing cow cheese triangles, salami and Rosa tomatoes. A fruit salad made up of cantaloupe, red and green grapes.                                            
    Been getting a lot of compliments for the coconut clusters. I will have to make some more...or maybe try something similar, they're so easy but SO good.

    What are you having for lunch?


    Thursday, 23 October 2012

    I don't think Hungry Hubby appreciates all my effort... He forgot his lunch box at work again!

    This however is a good opportunity to show how you can do a bento lunch box without the fancy Planetbox.

    I kept all the little sauce holders from take away restaurants, which I use now for different sauces. I also experienced some leakage yesterday (wow that sounds terrible!) with the mustard and tomato sauce so will have to use all the sauce packets I've kept as well.

    Tuesday's lunch is as follows:

    We have a flour tortilla filled with avo, chicken, young spinach leaves and Rosa tomatoes. In one container we have 1001 island sauce for dipping the wraps. The other small container has hummus to dip the carrot sticks in. The Planetbox container has fat free mango and orange yoghurt in. Fruits are strawberries and grapes and as treats we have mini blueberry muffins and some of the coconut chocolate cluster that I made into small squares instead of balls.

    Hungry Hubby's lunch box is a bit different. He gets a big ball...I mean chocolate cluster (because he's a big boy), a big container of hummus with sugar-snap peas and carrots, some grapes and two wraps. I used another smaller container inside the big container to stop too many foods intermingling, but I can't stop the mini blueberry becoming too personal with wrap!

    I think I need to start thinking up some punishments for him forgetting his lunch box at work. Any ideas?

    Monday, 22 October 2012

    Healthier is the motto for this week!

    I have a hot-dog in a whole wheat roll (with mustard and tomato sauce), strawberries, cantaloupe, red grapes, hummus with carrots and sugar-snap peas.

    Hungry Hubby's is a bit different. He requested lots of carrots with his hummus and no strawberries (I don't think he likes them that much and I absolutely adore them!). So for him 2 hot-dogs (he's a big guy after all), watermelon and grapes, hummus (with extra hummus!) lots of carrots and sugar-snap peas.

    It's only been a week and I'm already worried I'm going to run out of ideas, especially for sandwiches.

    Please share your ideas or family favourites!  

    Please share any sandwich ideas that are family favourites, your comments are highly appreciated and I can only promise that I will try to do them justice.


    Chocolate and Coconut Clusters

    I found this recipe after Hungry Hubby sent me the link to food24.com. On the website there are so many beautiful bakes perfect for lunch boxes. I've made some changes so it isn't too sweet.

    1/2 cup butter
    1 1/2 cups castor sugar
    1/2 cup cocoa powder
    1/2 cup coconut milk or regular milk
    3 cups oats
    1 cup fine desiccated coconut
    1 tsp vanilla essence

    Grease a baking sheet with butter.put the butter, sugar, cocoa powder and milk in a pot. (I used cocoa powder we bought in Bali. We also bought the most amazing Ginseng coffee).

    Heat over a medium heat, stirring until the mixture boils. Turn down the heat to low and cook for 5 minutes.

    Stir in the oats, coconut and vanilla essence. Stir until well mixed.

    Take 2 teaspoons and form into small clusters of the warm mixture on a baking sheet.

    Leave on the baking sheet to cool down completely. The clusters should be cold and firm.

    You can also spread it into a tin, leave overnight in the fridge and then cut it into squares:

    For more of their recipes go to food24.com or click here


    Thursday, 18 October 2012

    And it happened... Hungry Hubby forgot his brand new lunch box at work! So his lunch is going in three different containers instead of the nicely co-ordinated one. It's the same as mine so here it is:

    Some salami and ham (rolled up), cheese sticks (normal Gouda cut into sticks) and coriander cream cheese dip with cucumber sticks. Some grapes and banana bread and 2 mini chicken pies.

    For the Coriander Cream Cheese Dip:

    1 tub creamed cottage cheese
    1 tub low fat cream cheese
    A bunch of coriander chopped
    1/4 tsp garlic (as needed)
    1/4 tsp ginger
    Salt & pepper

    Mix all together and leave to infuse at least over night. For a creamier (and lighter) consistency exchange the cheeses with Greek Yoghurt.


    Wednesday, 17 October 2012

    Hungry Hubby and I decided to slowly go on a diet, meaning we are going to try to eat healthier. This usually means we our diet start on the Monday and by Tuesday evening it all goes to hell as we grab what ever is the "easiest" (meaning "junk"). A proper lunch box (not like the first one on day one though with too many carbs it made a diabetic want to run away screaming!) allows you to think before you add to the different compartments. 

    The second important aspect is aesthetics. You want the lunch box to look appetizing so that means colour. So here is the secret of the perfect lunch box: balance the food groups and balance the colour spectrum! Now somebody please explain this to Hungry Hubby as he is always interfering in my presentations!
    So Hungry Hubby had tuna mayo salad (in the glass container) with yellow pepper, red onion and rosa tomatoes, some nice green spinach leaves. A few flapjacks (crunchies) for elevenses and a last red velvet cupcake. And again carrots with hummus.

    Mine is a bit different. I added salami and cheese, pineapple pieces and as Hungry Hubby got the last hummus, I had a home-made coriander cream cheese dip.

    Flab jack, crunchies or cookies recipes

    There are only so many products available to buy so me, Mrs Undomesticated, hereby request your assistance! Please share ideas and recipes, any comment would be greatly appreciated!


    Tuesday, 16 October 2012

    And it's our first Lunch!

    The same for both me and Hungry Hubby: sandwich with pastrami, cheese, lettuce, avo and a little mustard. Some mini chicken pies, banana bread and mini red velvet cupcakes (all bought from our local deli. I'm afraid I might be married for almost 4 months but I'm not that domestic yet!) and finally something healthy: carrot sticks with some hummus (Hungry Hubby's surprising new favourite).

    This is how it looked. First thing I realise is that I need to work on improving the presentation. Let me know what you think of the improvements.

    I know it's not healthy and I'm not trying to give him a heart attack but I though I'd celebrate by giving him (and me) some treats. I might have over done it a bit...

    Banana bread recipe?

    Does anyone have an easy banana bread recipe they're willing to share? Banana bread is one of our weaknesses but finding it in the shops have become so difficult! Please help an undomesticated wife fake it!


    Why am I doing this?

    Okay, so I'm a little lunch box obsessed.

    Not so much what you put into it but the actual boxes! So after drooling over PlanetBox lunch boxes, I finally ordered two (one for me and one for my always 'Hungry Hubby') and after waiting three weeks (5 days from America to South Africa but more than 2 weeks at South Africa customs!) I finally got them and I was so excited!

    So I immediately went on-line to look at what I can put in them. But what I could find was not much, only some photo's on the PlanetBox website (and mainly children's lunches). I then decided that instead of keeping a private record of possible lunches, I will share it with everyone who need some ideas and hopefully you will share your ideas with me!

     Please feel free to post your ideas and recipes.