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Welcome to The Kitchen Playground. Cooking can bring great joy and great despair. I hope that the recipes you find here, many of which are very quick to make with the weeknight in mind, help you to experience more joy than despair. Many recipes have instructions for the Thermomix 31 as well as traditional instructions. The emphasis is on real, fresh food that combines flavour, texture and scent to delight the senses.

Flavours of Vietnam: The Pho Cocktail

by Dani

I greeted Friday evening with a much greater sigh of relief than is usual this week. It hasn’t been a bad week, just a busy one. Plus it was the Bread Winner’s birthday and I’d had to stand him up for lunch which I felt dreadful about. Such is the crazy world of education. All […]

Thermomix Flavours of Vietnam. Quy Nhon Fishcakes

by Dani

This is a thermomix adaptation of Luke Nguyen’s recipe from The Food of Vietnam. Quy Nhon Fishcakes Ingredients 1 tablespoon fish sauce 2 skinless white fish fillets salt and pepper 1/4 teaspoon sesame oil 1 clove garlic, peeled 5 spring onions, white part only, reserve green and slice thinly to serve 3 tablespoons sesame oil […]

Thermomix flavours of Mexico. Avocado crema corn.

by Dani
avocado crema corn

A brief hiatus in the kitchen from Vietnamese flavours. This is absolutely delicious and incredibly messy to eat. Particularly for those who are bearded. I have adapted a recipe found in an airplane magazine, apparently the original is from Cantina by Paul Wilson. I served this accompanied by skate which had been smeared in ground […]

Flavours of Vietnam. Mini hamburger style pork buns.

by Dani
Serving mini pork buns

This is technically as Chinese inspired as it is Vietnamese. Either way it is low prep, delicious and fun for the kids who like any dish where they compile their own servings. Mini Pork Buns. Ingredients. 1 packet frozen spring roll buns (from Asian grocers) 500g piece pork neck Char siu sauce 2 spring onions […]

Flavours of Vietnam. Chicken and Green Papaya Salad

by Dani
Chicken & Green Papaya Salad

Quick and delicious on a hot night. Chicken & Green Papaya Salad Ingredients 1 green papaya 1 tblsp Phu Quoc fish sauce 3 chicken thigh fillets 1 spring onion, sliced thinly fried shallots, sliced chilli and crushed peanuts to garnish Method 1. Peel and julienne the green papaya and toss fish sauce and spring onion […]

Flavours of Vietnam – Chicken and Herb Salad.

by Dani

This meal was born of necessity as I the only fruit or vegetables I had was that which was growing in the garden. Chicken and Herb Salad. Ingredients 3 chicken thigh breasts chopped into bite sized pieces 1 cup Vietnamese mint leaves 1 cup parsley sprigs 1 cup mint leaves 1/4 cup chopped chives 3 spring […]

Flavours of Vietnam – Pork in betel leaves.

by Dani
pork in betel leaves

Betel leaves are lovely and fragrant and can be bought at Asian Grocers. They are often used as an edible wrap in Vietnamese cooking. Pork in Betel Leaves Ingredients 250g pork mince 1 chilli, seeded and finely chopped 1 stem of lemongrass, white part finely chopped 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped 1 shallot, finely chopped […]

Flavours of Vietnam – Warm okra, tomato and pineapple salad.

by Dani

We spent January travelling through Vietnam. We began our adventure in Hanoi, took a day trip to Ha Long Bay and then traveled to Danang, Hoi An, Nha Trang, Can Tho, Phu Quoc and Ho Chi Minh City. The food was a major focus of our trip. It differed from region to region and the […]

Halloween, something I usually ignore.

by Dani
witches fingers

I’m not a Halloween kind of girl. To be honest it just doesn’t make sense to me in the southern hemisphere. My Celtic roots get me all hung up on the end of harvest concept and kids eating that much junk food right before bedtime isn’t exactly my cup of tea either. The street we’re […]

You won’t find Jamie Oliver working under these conditions…

by Dani
new kitchen

Chez KP was demolished a few months ago. That’s right. Razed to the ground. It’s being rebuilt bigger and better than ever. You will not be surprised to discover that the kitchen will be the centre of the house and features more upgrades than any other room. It will be light and spacious and truly […]