Best lemon butter

The recipe in this blog post is the best lemon butter getting around. You’ll crank it out in no time and you’ll be congratulating yourself all week that you made it. Well, at least that’s what happened around here this week.

Best Lemon Butter recipe

It was after dinner one night and we were talking about food (again!) as we cleaned up the kitchen. The subject of lemon butter came up and all of our eyeballs settled on the little bowl of lemons sitting on the bench, dreaming of what could be.

Okay, let’s just do it. Within half an hour, I was looking at my jar of lemon butter and licking the saucepan. Yum!

To sterilise my jar I actually use my old microwave baby bottle steriliser. It’s really quick and easy to do. However, if you don’t have one taking up valuable real estate in the pantry like I do,ย  then just wash your jar well with warm water and soap, then sit it on a tray and pop into a hot oven while you make the lemon butter.

Here’s the recipe for the best lemon butter:

Best lemon butter

Best lemon butter

Ingredients

  • 3 eggs, well beaten
  • 4 lemons, juiced
  • 3/4 cup caster sugar
  • 2 Tbsp butter

Instructions

  1. Sterilise your jar/jars, in the oven or microwave.
  2. Place eggs, lemon juice and sugar in a saucepan.
  3. Bring to the boil and simmer to cook the eggs. Stir constantly so that there are no egg lumps.
  4. Add the butter. Keep stirring and it will thicken.
  5. Once thick, pour into your hot jar and seal.
  6. Allow to cool, then store in the fridge and use when cold (it's so hard to wait).
http://trinamichellehouse.com/lemon-butter/

Be really careful handling your hot sterilised jar. I use a tea towel but I’m amazed if I can get it standing upright and filled with lemon butter without scolding myself (lemon butter injuries really hurt).

We eat the best lemon butter on pancakes, on bread, toast, rice cakes or on “little round biscuits” (Savoy cracker thingies). Do you enjoy lemon butter on anything else? Please comment below if you do. We are always open to suggestions around here.

Best lemon butter in jar

I really wanted to take a photo of this jar while it was still full, but you’ve got to be quick! As you can see I was unsuccessful.

This best lemon butter recipe will fill a decent sized jam jar (makes almost 2 cups). It makes a beautiful homemade gift and with Christmas coming up, you could add it to your planning list. A great gift for teachers, neighbours, family and friends…..that’s if you can part with it.

Trina xx

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“Room” by Emma Donoghue

Last night I finished reading “Room” by Emma Donoghue. Today I am sad that it is finished! I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

“Room” is such a unique story. It is written from the perspective of a five year old boy, Jack. Jack’s Ma was kidnapped when she was nineteen years old and kept in Old Nick’s backyard in a sound-proof shed with no windows (just Skylight). Old Nick would bring her supplies and one day, she became pregnant with his child.

"Room" by Emma Donoghue

Ma and Jack have a super-close bond (she still breastfeeds him) and Ma tries to make living in Room fun for Jack. They have so many simple little games and rituals that help them pass the time. Every family has “in” jokes and Donoghue captures that concept really well. Ma is conscious that Jack needs to learn and get exercise so she is very creative with their activities. Jack’s whole world is in Room and until he turned five, he believed that there was nothing else in the world (other than Old Nick). Ma hides Jack in Wardrobe during Old Nick’s night time visits so they never have any contact, but Jack hears all the sordid sounds of his visits.

Due to the lack of dental care, Ma’s teeth are in bad shape and she is in constant pain. She manages the pain with strong pain killers and this also helps to dull her thoughts and escape from her world of Room and little Jack.

Fearing that Old Nick may resort to killing them due to his recent unemployment, Ma decides that she and Jack need to make a plan of escape. Jack is afraid of escaping. He quite likes his life in Room with Table and Shelf and Wardrobe and Meltedy Spoon. It’s all he’s ever known.

Room by Emma Donoghue

I won’t spoil the story for you – because you HAVE to read this! Jack’s language is cute and funny, yet disturbing. Although this isn’t a true story, apparently Donoghue conceived the story after hearing about five-year-old Felix in theย Fritzl case. The effects of isolating a human being from birth are extraordinary. It also showcases a parent-child relationship brilliantly.

“Room” by Emma Donoghue made me laugh, cry and it has cemented itself in my mind. I think about it during the day while I do other things. It is a book like no other.

Room novel

You. Must. Read. It.

Trina xx

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Baked Cheese, Spinach and Tomato Risotto

Risottos are so good! You are going to love this baked cheese, spinach and tomato risotto recipe. It’s super quick and easy because it is baked. None of this standing over the stove for half an hour ladling stock into the pot business (I end up drinking far too much wine while I pass the time doing this!). Baking it is so much better. You just get the risotto started on the stove then whack it in the oven for a while and you’re done! Dinner is ready before you know it.

Here is my latest easy baked risotto recipe:

Cheese, tomato and spinach risotto

Cheese, tomato and spinach risotto

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 250g cherry tomatoes (or 2 tomatoes roughly chopped)
  • 1 handful of baby spinach leaves
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup grated cheese (tasty or cheddar)
  • 4 Tbsp fresh parsley, finely chopped

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 deg C (400 deg f)
  2. Place the olive oil, diced onion and tomatoes into a large pot and cook on the stove (medium heat) until onion is clear and tomatoes have softened.
  3. If you are using cherry tomatoes you can gently mash them to break them down or just leave them whole.
  4. Add the arborio rice and hot chicken stock to the pot. Place the pot in the oven (covered with lid on) for around 20 minutes. The stock should be absorbed and the rice cooked through.
  5. Remove from the oven and stir in the grated cheese, spinach and parsley.
  6. Serve immediately and enjoy every mouthful.
http://trinamichellehouse.com/baked-cheese-spinach-and-tomato-risotto/

The only thing I may change about this recipe in the future is the quantity. It serves 4 but they are not huge serves. Everyone here had enough to eat but if you have big eaters at your place you might like to size the recipe up (maybe double it and have leftovers). Alternatively, you could add some other vegetables to bulk it out a bit, like broccoli and cauliflower for example.

Baked risotto

Make my cheese, spinach and tomato risotto after a busy day because it’s so quick to prepare and you can relax or do other things while your oven does all the work. Let me know if you make this risotto at your place. It’s so tasty and great for young children (the cheese makes it irresistible to them). It’s perfect for Meatless Monday, but if you’d like to jazz it up you could add some cooked chicken or even a sneaky can of tuna. You can serve this risotto with a side salad if you like but I think it’s perfect just on its own.

Trina xx

P.S.

I am no stranger to the baked risotto. I’ve told you about them before. Huge fan. If you’d like some more easy risottos like this one, here are my previous baked risotto recipes:

Trina’s Baked Tomato Risotto Recipe

Leek and Barley Risotto

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“Y” by Marjorie Celona

“Y. That perfect letter. The wishbone, fork in the road, empty wineglass. The question we ask over and over. Why? . . . My life begins at the Y.”ย  So begins the latest book I’ve been enjoying, “Y” by Marjorie Celona.

"Y" by Marjorie Celona

The story is told by Shannon who was abandoned as a newborn by her troubled young mother on the steps of the local YMCA. She was swaddled in her mother’s dirty sweatshirt and had a Swiss Army knife nestled in by her feet. A random man, Vaughn, witnesses the young girl placing the baby on the doorstep from his car.

"Y" description

Swiss Army Knife

Shannon was shuffled from foster home to foster home until she was taken in permanently by single mum Miranda and her daughter Lydia-Rose at the age of five. She remained with Miranda and Lydia-Rose who gave her a good humble home, despite Shannon’s restlessness.

Shannon grows up knowing that she was abandoned and longs to know the story of her parents.ย  Where did she come from? Who were they? Why, oh why did they abandon her?

Y

In “Y” by Marjorie Celona, Shannon tells her childhood story, but she also narrates the chapters telling the backstory of her parents. Her language carries an innocence and honesty that draws you in and makes you want to know more. She tells us about her lazy eye that can’t see and her blonde Afro hair (who did she inherit that from?).

Shannon’s birth mother, Yula, is a fascinating character with her own set of troubles. By the end of the book my heart ached for Yula. She was so young and vulnerable and with good intentions. The book develops Yula’s character really well and I love the way her story was told by her daughter Shannon.

"Y" quote

In her quest to uncover the mysteries of her origin, Shannon finds Vaughn and together they form a unique friendship. Because he witnessed Shannon’s abandonment he too is curious as to the circumstances surrounding it. He becomes Shannon’s accomplice and someone she can count on when things get tough.

This book is a profound look at family, belonging, forgiveness and gratitude. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Trina xx

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Old fashioned chocolate slice

 

Here is the recipe for my (Mum’s) old fashioned chocolate slice.ย  If you grew up in Australia you probably know this one. It’s a classic. You might know it as chocolate crunch slice or chocolate coconut slice.

It’s pretty too.

Old fashioned Chocolate slice

I reckon this old fashioned chocolate slice was made almost on a weekly basis in our house when I was a young girl. It’s very quick and easy to make and it is so yummy. I really love the way the mixture sticks together in a big buttery blob when it goes into the pan. After it has cooked it sets as it cools so that it’s really crunchy and delicious.

In our house it was iced with chocolate icing then topped with hundreds and thousands, so of course that’s how I make it for my kids now too. Once cool, this old fashioned chocolate slice cuts nicely and will store really well in an airtight container for around a week (I promise it will be eaten long before this!). It also freezes very well, even with the icing on it.

Here is the recipe:

Old fashioned chocolate slice

Old fashioned chocolate slice

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Plain flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup coconut
  • 1 Tbsp cocoa
  • 185g butter
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
    For the icing
  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 2 Tbsp cocoa
  • 30g butter
  • 1 1/2 Tbs hot water

Instructions

  1. Sift dry ingredients into bowl, add melted butter and vanilla. Mix well.
  2. Press mixture into greased 28cm x 18cm lamington tin.
  3. Bake in moderate oven for 20 minutes or until cooked.
  4. Cool in tin.
  5. When cool, ice with chocolate icing and sprinkle with hundreds & thousands.
  6. Cut into squares when icing has set.
    For the icing
  1. Sift icing sugar and cocoa into small bowl.
  2. Add melted butter and water.
  3. Mix well until the icing is smooth and glossy.
  4. Add more water or icing sugar as required.
http://trinamichellehouse.com/old-fashioned-chocolate-slice/

This old fashioned chocolate slice is a delicious treat. Take it with you when you visit friends, take it on picnics, make it for your workmates. Everyone will love it and people might remember it from their childhood too!

Give this recipe a go at your place. It’s easy enough for the kids to whip up after school or on the weekend. Make a yummy afternoon tea treat for your family.

Trina xx

PS I’m not going to pretend this slice is healthy…..it’s definitely in the “special treat” category, but as part of a balanced diet I think you should give yourself permission to have a piece and enjoy every crumb!

ALSO: I have some other great chocolate slices you might love too: Check them all out!

Chocolate Fudge

Marbled Chocolate Cheesecake Slice

Crispy Date and Choc Chip Slice recipe

Grandma’s Bars recipe

Everyday Brownies

The Whack-It-In-Together Naughty Girl Slice

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