Thursday, April 30, 2009

My fave from 'Great Vegetarian Dishes'

This is one of my top 10 Favorite meals, It is a lovely recipe from Kurma Dasa, an inspired vegetarian chef who really knows his stuff! It comes from one of his cook books called ‘Great Vegetarian Dishes’.
When we first made this dish I must tell you I was not too keen on some of these veggies! I really wasn’t! But something unbelievably magic happens with this combination, give it a go and please let me know what you think! Kurma dasa is here

Vegetable Sauce (served with couscous)
3tablespoons butter
½ teaspoon yellow asafetida powder
6 small zucchinis cut into 2.5 cm sections
2 medium green peppers, seeded cored and cut into thick strips
2 cups pumpkin, cubed
1 large potato, peeled and coarsely chopped
2 small turnips, cut in half and sliced lengthwise
at least 4 cups water
2cups (500ml) chickpeas, cooked and drained
8 medium tomatoes, diced
1½ teaspoons ground coriander
1½ teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons turmeric
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 small hot green chilies, chopped
1½ teaspoons salt (I use sea salt)
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

To Make the Sauce
Melt butter in heavy base saucepan. Add the asafetida, zucchinis, peppers, pumpkin, potato and turnips and sauté for 10 minutes. Add half the water and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
Add the chickpeas, tomatoes, ground coriander, cumin, turmeric, cayenne, chilies, salt, pepper and the rest of the water, (adding more if needed). Stir well and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for another 15 minutes. Towards the end of the cooking time prepare your couscous.
A couple of extra notes from me on Kurma’s recipe;
* I find my veggies don’t need quite this amount of time, I might cut mine a little smaller than I need to perhaps. I keep an eye on the pumpkin so it does not go mushy.
*I usually make a gigantic pot of this squirrel it away in freezer, it reheats fine but you need it really hot so the texture of the potato comes up ok.
*I add about 3 times the spices and liquid to make it go a very long way.
*Start with a little chili and build up if you are worried, this really is not a spicy dish though, even with 2 chilies.

Good photo Day, YAY

I have been racing around madly taking photos this arvo. It’s a ripper of a day here!! More soon. Gee that purple is full on, I think perhaps a little too much sunshine. Chele x
Pip's link here I'm not so good with these short cut links and buttons! Yet!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Elephant toy, inspired by many, made by me. 'DAGGY STYLE'

Zentangle Bookmark 2

Zentangle Bookmark 2
Originally uploaded by joanieponytail57

This looks like fun and I am definatley giving this a go.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Cooking with Kurma

One of the most enjoyable days we have spent was hosting a cooking class in our home with some good friends. Geoff and I are not vegetarian eaters exclusively but we have grown to appreciate something better than the old Aussie diet
of ‘meat and 3 Vegge’.
In our early poor days, while watching TV, (our fave channel – SBS) a cooking show came on with Kurma Dasa, (Cooking with Kurma) a Vegetarian chef whose use of spices and herbs creates the most
delicious food.
Inspired by the world’s best spices and herbs, his recipes are full of flavor and healthy.
Do you like your Vegetables or you want to enjoy eating them more? Maybe you’d like to be more adventurous with spices (and I do not mean spicy hot necessarily). Try his gorgeous recipes and if you are keen, think about hosting a cooking day with some friends. I’ll come, if I can get there!
Our cooking day was great fun - we worked hard, learnt heaps, were inspired and then sat down to the most amazing feast. We will be having another one soon. Cheers to Kurma!

The menu we chose out of many was
‘Classics from the Subcontinent’

*Sweet & Sour Masoor Dal Soup with Pumpkin
*South Indian Lemon Rice with
Fresh Coconut & Cashews
*Poriyal of Cauliflower, Potato and Peas
(Mild Karnataka-style)
*Flame toasted Papadams
*North Indian Cabbage, Coconut and Peanut Salad (Kobi Pachadi),
Seasoned Spinach with Yogurt (Palak Raita),
Flakey Wholewheat Griddle Fried Breads (Parathas),
Saffron-scented Rice Pudding (Chaval Ksira) served with Cream and Bananas

Monday, April 27, 2009

When I was 3

michele & doll
Originally uploaded by cheletann

This is a photo of me when I was 3, Aaww,
having tea with my doll, Goofy and not to forget my 101 Dalmatians. Can’t you see them too?
I had/have a wild imagination and liked to hang out with ‘imaginary friends’.
When I remember my preschool years, ‘Goofy’ and I did spend a lot of time together.
One day I left my 101 Dalmatians at kinder, I had tied them up to a tree when I arrived. My Pop knew I was very concerned that they would be ok and so he took me back to get them. I remember my teacher was still there waiting, expecting that I would come back for my dogs.
My daughter Maeve has an imaginary friend; his name is ‘Annie Ganny’. He used to be around more when she was 3-4 yrs old, but is mentioned only occasionally now that she is going to school.
It’s a very faded slide that mum converted to a photo but I am very pleased to have this shot.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Trying some different colors

Bad photo, colors are SO different to this, that red is actually a dark hot pink. Will re post photo when I can get a better shot.

Friday, April 24, 2009

More Grannys 1,2+3

If anyone out there can give me a hint as to how to successfully put the 'Granny a Day' button on my blog I will be eternally greatful! This is fun, I could browse other peoples work for Way too long!!

Bright granny squares afghan

Bright granny squares afghan
Originally uploaded by alceda

I love this blanket! All the cheery colors, the different sized Granny Squares! Wow ! Judith has done some georgous crochet blankets!
They remind me of Gustav Klimt's paintings.
I think I am going to brighten mine up and play around with some different sizes.

Have a look here on flickr -

Thursday, April 23, 2009

A Granny

Number 1 Granny Square, I hope I am still able to lob in to Pip's A Granny a Day!! Find the link here;
Actually this is my 2nd Granny Square but Geoff seems to have put the 1st one 'somewhere safe'. hmmm, we will find it - one day - I guess?

Pumpkins and a pea pod with Lippy

Our Pumpkins are picked and I am planning recipes. A Pumpkin Pie for something new might be nice, maybe even some Pickled Pumpkin or Pumpkin Chutney? - if anyone knows of something yummy along these lines let me know please. I will definitely make a truck load of Good Old Pumpkin Soup (We love it)
Under the 'harvest' is one of the 'Veggie/Fruit People' Tea Towels I helped Maeve make for friends/family last Christmas. We printed them out on T-shirt transfer paper then ironed them onto a plain panel of fabric. Then we sewed panel on tea towel with cute ribbon trim. Very basic and easy. Out of all the color combinations this was my fave, unfortunately the transfer stuff does not wash all that well. The next project like this I will try some of the ink jet printable fabric or make my own, it might be more durable.
*From left to right; A Bouffant Brocolli, a Hairy Pea?, a Pea pod with lippy on and little peas inside (has to be my favorite), another stray Pea, an Eggplant and a Pineapple.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Blogging on with an Owl and Mouse

I am having such fun blogtweaking at the moment, there are worlds of things you can do!! (Hmm ...showing my technonaivity), quite mind boggling! I have spent some time on playing around but I thought it was about time to add another photo and get something new up! Trying hard not to be too impatient and be choosey but not a perfectionist. Great advice for starting a blog from Pip over at;
*Note to self - take more 'good' photos..
This is a toy Owl I made, who is sitting beside a really cute oppy mouse I found.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Love the Holidays!

I just love it when we are on holidays. Lots of time for things like bike riding, walking/training Mr. Aldo Vini, our lovely dog and even a day of indoor rock climbing! (I want a go next time) Maeve is off her Training Wheels – YAY! – And we have even finally had a sticky beak at Federation Square in Melbourne’s CBD. Thank goodness we have also had our slack days too, days of staying in PJ’s until well after lunch. Ahh, heaven!
We have achieved harmony…‘at times’…here in our household. That can be rare with a feisty 6 yr old girl and a thuggish 2 yr old boy, but, touch wood, they are a delight when it happens. After two weeks though, these smooth moments are few and far between, and I am now ready for school to start again.

Has anyone out there read ‘The Slap’? Let me know what you thought of it.
It was recommended to me and I found it extremely hard to put down. Here is a review;
Great read!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Our easter hats

Our easter hats
Originally uploaded by happydacks
After finding Chocolate eggs for breakfast... (Outrageous) we collected things from the garden and made some 'Easter Bonnets' then decorated our hats with various herbs and flowers- smelt great and with the 'Lambs ears" sticking up looked reminiscent of A Midsummer Nights Dream. Party Hat Tutorial found at

Happy Dacks for Fiann

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Dacks?

Hi someone!?

I am unsure why am I starting a BLOG. I am too busy with my life and far too lazy with my 'spare' time for this but I'm craving an outlet to say what I think about and to get an impartial opinion of some of the things I make, not to forget to gain inspiration from you guys too. I've been so inspired by so many blogs over the last few years, its time I became interactive.

It somehow feels it might be safer to say exactly what I think here than with some face to face situations.

My inspiration for this blog name comes from the pants I made my 2 yr old son, Fiann, they were from opp shop tea towel and all manner of scraps. I have a cunning plan to make lots of Happy Dacks for Everyone, one day.. ha ha ha ha!!!
Realistically, I would just settle for hand making all our gifts and some more of our clothes..