We all know what’s remembered long after special occasions, I’m not telling you anything you don’t know here. It’s not the gifts, although, yup, they’re nice, it’s spending time together. Its sharing some food & some laughter. Its the connections made, the memories formed.
With this in mind, my little family had a picnic. I hope it inspires you to do something simple, but thoughtful, for Father’s Day this weekend.
I also cooked, because I enjoy it, and because it’s how I show love. How easy is to feel loved with a full belly?!
So grab some drinks, a blanket and some snacks, and spend time making memories together. You won’t regret it.
Here are the hero dishes I made. I’m trying to sneak vegetables into my children any way possible at the moment so you’ll see my camouflage work in action here!
The Shepardess Pie – Beef Pie w/ a Cauliflower Mash Top
For the filling
1kg beef mince
1 large onion cut into a small dice
½ t garlic minced
1 large carrot grated
1 large zucchini grated
2 Tablespoons tomato paste
1 Can of tomato’s
Salt & Pepper to taste
Beef stock – I used 1 continental gel “stock pot”
Sweet chilli sauce to taste approx. 2 Tablespoons
Herbs – I used oregano & rosemary as that is what we had in the garden but any “hard” herbs that you enjoy will work well
Oil for frying
For the topping
One head of cauliflower
1 Tablespoon butter or oliviani
Salt and Pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 180.
In a large frypan sauté the onion in a little oil on a medium heat until translucent. Then add garlic, zucchini and carrot. Fry for a few minutes until gently cooked. Take out of the pan and place into the blender with the can of tomatos, blend until combined
While you are blending the above add the mince to the pan (no need to clean it). Don’t crowd the pan as there is nothing worse than boiled mince. If needed, do this step in 2 batches. Once nicely browned add the blended tomato mix back to the pan and season with salt & pepper. Add tomato paste, sweet chilli & chopped herbs. Cook until nicely combined and you are happy with the flavour. Add more seasoning, sweet chilli, or tomato paste if needed.
Set aside while you prepare the cauliflower.
Add cauliflower florets to boiling salted water and cook until tender. Drain and add butter/oliviani and use a wand blender to make into mash. Taste for seasoning.
Add mince to oven proof serving dish and top with cauliflower. I also added a sprig of rosemary purely for appearance and a slosh of olive oil.
Pop into preheated oven and cook until bubbling and hot, approx. 15 mins.
*For our picnic i wrapped the hot pie in foil and then in 2 tea towels to keep it warm until we reached our destination
** It is a large serve and you can either make one large pie or 2 smaller ones like i did here. We had one for dinner the next night.
Easy Ham, Corn & Egg Slice
7 free range eggs
50 grams sliced ham roughly cut into 3 cm pieces
1 can of creamed corn
1 cup roast vegetables, I used Beauregard Kumara
Herbs – I used oregano but Italian parsley or basil would both be lovely
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 180
Grease and line a small pan, mine was 20cm x 28cm
Beat eggs together, add all the rest of the ingredients and stir to combine
Place into prepared tin and cover with foil. Place in the centre of your oven.
Check after 15 minutes and remove foil. Place back in the oven and cook until cooked through, you want no raw egg in the middle. Approx 30mins in total cook time.
Chocolate chia Pudding
3 teaspoons cocoa powder
2 Tablespoons honey
3 Tablespoons chia
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
Maple syrup & fruit to serve, I used tamarillo here
Place the honey in a microwave proof bowl/jar and add about ¼ cup of the almond milk. Microwave to melt the honey, approx. 10 seconds. Once dissolved add the cocoa and stir until combined. Add the rest of the almond milk and the chia seeds. Stir and pop in the fridge overnight (or at least for a few hours). These will puff up and soak up all the liquid.
When ready to serve place the chia in to your serving dish and top with fruit & drizzle with maple syrup. Makes enough for 3 people.
I tried to get deep and talk to Hamish about what he enjoys most about being a father, but we kept getting interrupted by busy babies! Perhaps we will have that discussion on Sunday for Father’s day, when we will give him some small presents, sloppy kisses and probably an afternoon kip, because that sums up everything a dad could ever want I reckon.