Bringing real baking into your home with deliciously simple recipes.
Prep 20min (+20min cooling time)Bake 18-20minMakes about 40
These crackers have a lovely nuttiness (thanks to both the wholemeal flour and walnuts) to them, perfect to serve with a creamy blue-vein cheese. They would also make a great gift, sealed in an airtight jar and accompanied by some cheese and a good bottle of red.
225g (1½ cups) plain wholemeal flour, plus extra for dusting 100g walnuts, coarsely ground 2 teaspoons finely chopped rosemary, plus 2 tsp extra leaves, to sprinkle 1 teaspoon sea salt flakes, crushed ½ teaspoon baking powder 125ml (½ cup) water 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 tablespoon honey, warmed slightly
Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan forced). Line 2 large oven trays with non-stick baking paper.
Combine the flour, walnuts, rosemary, salt and baking powder in a large mixing bowl. Combine the water, olive oil and honey and use a fork to mix. Add the water mixture to the dry ingredients and use a wooden spoon and then your hands to mix to a soft dough.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead briefly until smooth. Divide the dough in half and use a lightly floured rolling pin to roll out one portion until 5mm thick. Use a 6cm round cutter to cut out discs and place on the lined trays about 2cm apart. Repeat with the remaining dough portion and any off cuts. Sprinkle the crackers with the extra rosemary leaves to garnish, and press lightly so they stick.
Bake in preheated oven for 18-20 minutes, swapping the trays around halfway through baking, or until golden and cooked through. Cool on the trays.
These crackers will keep in an airtight container or jar at room temperature for up to 1 week.
This recipe is from Anneka's SBS Food online column, Bakeproof. CLICK HERE for more Bakeproof recipes.
On a trip to Finland a few years ago it only took me a couple of meals to realise how much dill and salmon feature in the country’s wonderful cuisine. This pie is a little ode to the Fin’s favourite ingredients, all topped off with a deliciously buttery, flaky pastry.
2 celery stalks, trimmed and sliced
35g (¼ cup) plain flour
250ml (1½ cup) milk
125ml (½ cup) pouring (thin) cream
50g (½ cup) coarsely grated vintage cheddar
3 spring onions, trimmed and sliced
1½ tablespoons baby capers, rinsed and drained
2 tablespoons chopped dill
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
700g skinless salmon fillets, pin-boned and cut into 3cm pieces
1 egg yolk, lightly whisked with 2 teaspoons milk, to glaze
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the celery and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until starting to soften. Add the flour and stir with a balloon whisk for about 1 minute until the mixture is bubbling and leaves the sides of the pan.
Remove the pan from the heat and gradually stir in half the milk, stirring constantly, until smooth. Gradually add the remaining milk and cream, stirring until smooth. Return the pan to medium heat and stir constantly until the sauce thickens and starts to simmer. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring frequently, for 2 minutes.
Transfer the sauce immediately to a large heatproof bowl and stir in the cheddar, spring onions, capers, dill and mustard. Taste and season well with salt and pepper.
Place in the fridge for about 1 hour or until cooled to room temperature.
Preheat the oven to 200˚C (180°C fan-forced). You will need a 1.5 litre (6 cup) capacity ovenproof dish to cook the pie.
When the sauce has cooled, add the salmon and stir gently to combine evenly.
Use a lightly floured rolling pin to roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to the shape of the dish until about 4 mm thick. Spoon the cooled salmon mixture into the dish, then brush the edge of the dish with a little of the eggwash. Place the pastry over the filling to cover, then use a small sharp knife to run around the edge of the pie dish on a slight angle to trim the excess pastry. Use a fork to press around the edge of the dish to seal. Cut a cross in the top of the pie and then brush the pastry with a little eggwash to glaze. Decorate the top with the off-cuts of pastry, if desired, and then glaze again with the little of the eggwash.
Place the pie on a baking tray and bake for 45 minutes or until the pastry is dark golden, crisp and cooked through. Serve straight from the oven.
This pie is one of my all-time favourites and brings together some of Greece’s most popular ingredients – silverbeet, haloumi, Kalamata olives, rice and filo pastry. It takes a little while to prepare but don’t be put off, I promise it will be well worth the effort.
20g butter, plus extra melted for brushing
80ml (⅓ cup) olive oil
2 leeks, white section only, trimmed and thinly sliced
To make the poached chicken, put the chicken, carrot, celery, onion and peppercorns in a large saucepan or stockpot and add enough water to cover the chicken by about 2cm. Cover and bring to the boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low and poach gently, covered, for 40 minutes or until just cooked though. Remove from heat and stand the chicken in the stock at room temperature for 1 hour to cool slightly. Transfer to the fridge and cool the chicken in the stock completely (this will take about 2 hours).
Strain the stock, discarding the solids. Return 1 litre (4 cups) stock to the saucepan and bring to the boil (see Baker’s Tips). Continue boiling the stock for a further 12-15 minutes or until reduced to 375ml (1½ cups). Set aside.
Remove the meat from the chicken, discarding the skin and bones. Use your fingers to shred the chicken meat, cover and place in the fridge until required.
Put the butter, 1 tbsp oil and leek in a medium saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, covered and stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes or until the leek is just soft. Add the rice and stir to coat in the oil. Add the 375ml (1½ cups) reduced stock and bring to the boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to the lowest possible setting, cover the saucepan with a lid, and cook gently for 10 minutes or until the stock is absorbed and the rice is almost tender. Transfer to a large bowl and place in the fridge to cool (this will take about 1 hour).
Meanwhile, put the silverbeet in a large saucepan, cover with a lid and cook over high heat, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until wilted. Strain and cool slightly, then use your hands to squeeze out any excess moisture. Set aside.
To make the herbed yoghurt, combine the yoghurt, garlic and herbs in a small bowl and stir to combine. Cover and refrigerate until required.
Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Brush a 20cm x 30cm (base measurement) shallow slice tin with some of the melted butter.
When the rice has cooled, add the chicken, silverbeet, cream, olives, haloumi, parsley and thyme and stir gently to combine. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
Lay the filo sheets in a stack, cover with a dry tea towel and then a damp one to stop them from drying out. Take 1 sheet of filo (keeping the remaining sheets covered with the tea towels) and brush generously with the remaining olive oil. Lay another sheet on top. Continue to layer with the remaining filo to make two stacks, each with 6 sheets. Place the filo stacks widthways and slightly overlapping, into the greased tin to line, allowing the ends to overhang the top.
Spoon the chicken and rice mixture into the tin. Fold the overhanging filo over the top to cover. Brush top with remaining oil and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Bake for 45-50 minutes or until filo is golden and crisp. Remove from oven and stand in tin for 10 minutes before transferring to a serving plate or board. Serve warm or at room temperature with the herbed yoghurt and lemon wedges.
Any leftover pie will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days. Serve at room temperature or reheat, covered with foil, in a preheated 160°C oven for 15 minutes, then uncover and bake for a further 5-10 minutes or until the filling is heated through and the pastry is crisp.
Prep 15min (+ 5min standing time)Bake 25min-30minMakes about 12
Savoury muffins are a great alternative to the sweet ones, especially when served as a snack or instead of bread alongside soup or salad. The zucchini in these makes them lovely and moist while adding substance.
Light olive oil or sunflower oil, to grease (optional) 150g (1 cup) plain flour 150g (1 cup) wholemeal plain flour 1 tablespoon baking powder ½ teaspoon salt 70g (⅔ cup) finely grated parmesan cheese 65g (⅔ cup) coarsely grated vintage cheddar cheese ¼ cup chopped basil leaves 185ml (¾ cup) buttermilk 80ml (⅓ cup) light olive oil or sunflower oil 2 eggs, at room temperature 2 zucchini (about 100g each) ends trimmed, coarsely grated 40g (¼ cup) pine nuts, to scatter Cayenne pepper, to sprinkle
Preheat the oven to 190°C (170°C fan-forced). Line a 12-hole 80ml (⅓ cup) capacity muffin tin with paper cases or grease with a little vegetable oil.
Sift together the flours, baking powder and salt into a large bowl, returning any husks left in the sieve to the bowl. Season well with pepper and then gently stir in the parmesan, cheddar and basil. Make a well in the centre.
Use a fork to whisk together the buttermilk, olive oil and eggs in a bowl. Add the zucchini and mix to combine. Add to the flour mixture and use a spatula or large metal spoon to fold together until just combined. (Don’t overmix – the batter should still be a little lumpy.)
Spoon the mixture into the prepared muffin holes, dividing evenly. Scatter over the pine nuts and sprinkle with a little cayenne pepper. Bake in the preheated oven for 25–30 minutes or until the muffins are golden and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.
These muffins are best eaten the day they are baked, however they freeze well – wrap individually in plastic wrap and then seal in an airtight container or freezer bag. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature.
Predecessor to the modern pizza, focaccia is a simple Italian flatbread that was associated with Christmas Eve and Epiphany for many centuries. This savoury version, studded with fragrant rosemary and mixed olives, makes a fabulous accompaniment to a cheese board, picnic spread or soup.
600g (4 cups) strong bread or pizza flour, plus extra to dust
3 teaspoons instant dried yeast
2 teaspoons salt
330ml (1⅓ cups) luke warm water
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra to grease and 2 tbsp to drizzle
150g mixed olives
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves
sea salt flakes, to sprinkle
To make the dough, combine the flour, yeast and salt in a large bowl and make a well in the centre. Combine the water and oil, add to the flour mixture and use a wooden spoon and then your hands to mix to a soft dough.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5-8 minutes or until it is smooth and elastic and springs back when you push your finger into it. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, turning it to coat lightly with the oil. Cover with plastic wrap and place in a warm, draught-free place for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
Line a large baking tray with baking paper.
Knock back the dough by punching it in the centre with your fist. Turn the dough onto the lined tray and use your hands to press down on it, and to pull and stretch it to form a rough rectangle about 20 cm x 30 cm and 1.5 cm thick. Use your fingertips to press into the surface of the dough to form dimples.
Press the olives and rosemary into the surface flatbread. Drizzle with the extra olive oil and then sprinkle with the salt.
Set aside in a warm draught-free place for 30 minutes or until risen slightly.
Preheat the oven to 220°C (200°C fan-forced).
Bake in the centre of the preheated oven for 25 minutes or until golden and cooked through. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Prep 30min (+20min resting time)Bake 16-18minMakes about 8
Just like the ones you buy, these thin, crisp wafers are the perfect addition to any cheese board. Serve them alongside a soft washed-rind cheese, soft feta, nutty cheddar or any number of dips, such as beetroot or baba ghanoush.
225g (1½ cups) plain bread or pizza flour
1 teaspoon sea salt, crushed plus extra to sprinkle
125ml (½ cup) water
60ml (¼ cup) olive oil, plus extra to roll
2 teaspoons sesame seeds, to sprinkle
Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan forced). Line 2 large oven trays with non-stick baking paper.
Combine the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl and make a well in the centre. Combine the water and olive oil, add to the flour mixture and use a wooden spoon and then your hands to mix to a soft dough.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 1 minute or until smooth, elastic and bounces back when you press your finger into it. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and set aside for 20 minutes to rest.
Divide the dough into 8 portions and roll each in a little extra olive oil to coat lightly. Use your hands to flatten a portion into a rough rectangle and then use a rolling pin to roll out thinly and evenly into a large rectangle about 2mm thick (see Baker’s tip). Place on the lined trays. Repeat with three of the remaining dough portions. Brush the wafers with a little extra olive oil and sprinkle with extra salt and sesame seeds.
Bake the four wafers in preheated oven for 16-18 minutes, swapping the trays around halfway through baking, or until golden and crisp. Cool on the trays. Repeat with the remaining four dough portions to make eight large wafers in total. Break into smaller pieces to serve.
The more evenly you can roll the dough, the more evenly it will bake.
These wafers will keep in an airtight container or jar at room temperature for up to 1 week
This recipe is from Anneka's SBS Food online column, Bakeproof: Savoury Crackers.
Reminiscent of the good old Digestives, these biscuits easily swing between savoury and sweet. Serve them with blue cheese or dip them in dark chocolate to give them the flavour preference you prefer.
150g wholemeal plain flour
130g (1 cup) oat bran
75g (⅓ cup, firmly packed) brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
125g chilled unsalted butter, cubed
60ml (¼ cup) milk
Preheat oven to 180°C. Line two oven trays with non-stick baking paper.
Put the flour, oat bran, brown sugar, baking powder, salt and butter in the bowl of a food processor and process until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Sprinkle the mixture with the milk and use the pulse button to process until the mixture starts to come together as a dough. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and bring it together with your hands.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and use a lightly floured rolling pin to roll out until about 5 mm thick. Use a 6 cm round cutter to cut the dough into discs and place them on the lined trays about 3 cm apart. Prick the tops of each biscuit twice with a fork. Reroll any off cuts and cut out more biscuits.
Bake in preheated oven for 18-20 minutes or until golden around the edges, aromatic and cooked through. Cool on the trays.
These cookies will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.