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Three nurturing recipes for your emotions, mind and spirit

Did you know that medicinal plants can work wonders for your emotional health? In her revolutionary new guide The Plant Clinic, Erin Lovell Verinder says that ‘plants have a phenomenal ability to adapt their medicinal offerings to the needs of the people. They hold space for our process, bringing ease and comfort, lifting the proverbial storm clouds within us, calming the nervous system and assuring us with a warm embrace.’

Read on for three of Erin’s incredible recipes to help support your journey to better mental health and wellbeing.


Calm Candies

Who doesn’t love candy? These rose-dusted, ‘clean’ candies, infused with a synergistic quintet of calming plants, are sweetened only with honey. They are always a hit with the kids. Savour these nectarous, golden-hued jewels, to bring on an instant dose of peacefulness.

Photography: Georgia Blackie

Herbal Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons dried passionflower leaf
  • 2 teaspoons dried lemon balm leaf
  • 2 teaspoons dried chamomile flowers
  • 2 teaspoons dried skullcap leaf
  • rose petal powder (to dust)

Method

First, make 1/4 cup of strong medicinal tea infusion with the herbal ingredients, brewing the tea for at least 20 minutes before straining through a fine-mesh sieve. Add the infused tea base and 1 cup of honey to a heavy-bottomed saucepan and simmer over medium to high heat. It’s
best to use a candy thermometer here, as the mix needs to get to around 150°C (300°F). This will take around 25–30 minutes. If you do not have a thermometer, you can test if the candy is ready by dropping a little of the mixture into ice cold water. If the mixture is ready, it will harden instantly! Do be very careful, though, as hot sugar burns can be very serious and very sore.

Once ready, pour your candy mixture into small silicon moulds (any mould will do, but the candies are much easier to remove from silicon) and allow to cool completely. Remove from the moulds and dust with your herbal powder of choice (such as the rose petal powder in the Calm Candies remedy recipe, p. 278). You can roll each candy in baking paper for freshness and portability, or store sealed in an airtight container for 2–4 weeks. If you live in a warmer climate, keep these in the fridge!


Floral Bath

Sometimes the simplest interventions feel entirely luxurious, and this herbal practice is one of them. Floating in a bath of warm water scattered with precious petals is a treat for the mind, body and spirit. This remedy is perfect for when you may be feeling weary, fatigued, compressed, low and a little lacklustre. When choosing the floral plant portion of the recipe, consider aromatic herbs such as lavender and rose to inspire relaxation and rejuvenation.

Photography: Georgia Blackie

Herbal Ingredients

  • 1/2 – 1 cup fresh or dried medicinal flowers (e.g. lavender, calendula, chamomile, rose and rosemary)

Method

Mix the flowers and plant material directly into the running bath water – they will float and bob around merrily.

Soak up the serenity for 20 or so minutes.


Lion’s Mane Tonic

For those sluggish mornings or slumpy afternoons where you might find yourself in the thick of fogginess and in need of motivation. This warming blend lights up neurological powers and vitality – in part due to the awesomeness of the medicinal mushroom, lion’s mane, which is paired with chai spice tones and adaptogenic maca root. Implement this sustaining treat to renew your capacity for focused endurance.

Photography: Georgia Blackie

Herbal Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon lion’s mane mushroom powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamom powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger rhizome powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon maca root powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon lucuma powder
  • a pinch of ground black pepper
  • a dash of raw honey or sweetener of choice

Method

To make a warm mylk tonic, add the herbal ingredients and 1 cup plant mylk together in a milk frother and set to ‘warm’, or heat gently in a saucepan. If adding raw honey as a sweetener, ensure that your tonic is not boiling hot, as excess heat will degrade the honey’s beneficial enzymes. Once warm, pour into your favourite mug, dust with a little cinnamon, sip slowly and savour the warmth.

To make a cold mylk tonic, add the herbal ingredients and 1 cup plant mylk together in a milk frother set to ‘cool’, or blitz in a blender. Then simply pour into a tall glass over ice, sprinkle with edible petals and enjoy.

The Plant Clinic is available now. Text by Erin Lovell Verinder, photography by Georgia Blackie and design by Noah Harper Checkle.

AU$39.99


Posted on September 14, 2021
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Two delectable recipes to try from Matty Matheson: Home Style Cookery

In his second cookbook, one of our favourite chefs Matty Matheson opens up his home and shares his approachable style of cooking. Get a taste of the bold and beautiful dishes Matty serves up in Matty Matheson: Home Style Cookery with these recipes for his Chicago-Style Pork Chop Sandwich and Green Curry Beef Ribs.

Chicago-Style Pork Chop Sandwich

Serves 2

Prep time: 15 minutes

Half of these sandwiches are inspired by my trips to Chicago, it seems, and this pork chop is a perfect piece of history. A bone-in pork chop sandwich may seem weird or even troublesome, but I feel it’s a challenge and I’m always up for it. Whenever I go to get one of these, I can smell the onions from down the street—piles of caramelized onions covering seared pork chops, keeping them warm like the belly of a mama bear. I love the kind of spots that can hand you a sandwich in less than a minute flat, and the whole family instantly has food that’s eaten on the hood of the car, eating and chewing away at an American classic that now can be made at home. You could buy good pork, maybe, or buy those frozen bone-in quarter-inch-thick guys that we all remember growing up.

Photography: Quentin Bacon

Ingredients:

  • 2 bone-in pork chops (the thinnest pork chops available, about 115 g per chop)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for the onion
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 white onion, julienned
  • 4 slices toast
  • 2 tablespoons yellow mustard
  • 2 pickled jalapeño chiles

Directions:

  1. Season the pork chops with the salt and pepper.
  2. Heat the vegetable oil in a large cast-iron skillet over high heat. Once the oil is smoking hot, add the pork chops and sear hard on the first side, about 2 minutes. Flip and repeat on the other side. Take out of the skillet and rest on wire rack.
  3. Heat the vegetable oil in the hot pan. Throw the onion into the pan, stir it up, and hard-sear for 2 to 3 minutes. Put a lid on the pan and let the onion steam for a minute. You want those onions a little caramelized and burnt. Season with salt. Remove from heat and let rest.
  4. Spread 1 tablespoon of the mustard on one side of both the top and bottom pieces of toast. Place the pork chops on the bottom toast, cover with onions, and finish with the top toast, mustard side down. Serve with a pickled jalapeño.

Green Curry Beef Ribs

Serves 4 to 6

Prep time: 3 hours

Meat and rice is the new meat and potatoes. And braised beef ribs in spicy green curry is great for any meal— breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Real flavor-building, real spice, real tasty meals for the whole family. Building your skills and your palates are very important to keep things exciting in your home life. And guess what, the day after, shred this beef and make little rotis; add some cheese, even. Fuck this shit up.

Photography: Quentin Bacon

Ingredients:

For the beef short ribs:

  • 2 kg beef short ribs, meat removed from the bone and cut into 4 cm cubes
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
  • 1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 cup (200 g) diced onion
  • 2⁄3 cup (100 g) diced celery
  • 2 tablespoons sliced garlic
  • 1⁄4 cup (75 g) seeded and diced jalapeño chile
  • 1⁄2 cup (100 g) diced leek, white and green parts only
  • 2 stalks lemongrass, cut in half and smashed with the side of a knife
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon green curry paste
  • 1 tablespoon ground Thai spice (equal parts toasted ground cardamom and toasted ground cumin)
  • 4 cups (880 ml) Beef and Bone Marrow Stock (page 55), or store-bought
  • 1 cup (240 ml) canned unsweetened coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice

For the pickled garlic:

  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced paper-thin
  • 2 bird’s eye chiles, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar

For serving:

  • 1⁄3 cup (30 g) sliced scallions
  • 1½ cups (60 g) cilantro leaves, stems diced
  • Steamed jasmine rice, or Grilled Naan (page 30)

Directions:

  1. Make the short beef ribs: Season the short ribs with the salt and pepper. Heat the vegetable oil in a medium Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Working in 2 batches, brown the short ribs on all sides, about 8 minutes per batch. Transfer the short ribs to a plate and pour out about 70 percent of the fat from the pot.
  2. Add the onion, celery, garlic, jalapeño, leek, and lemongrass to the pot; cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion starts to brown, about 10 minutes. Add the ginger, curry paste, and toasted spice mix and stir to coat the vegetables. Add the short ribs and any juices from the resting plate. Add beef stock to barely cover the top of the short ribs. Bring to a boil, then turn down heat to low; simmer until the short ribs are tender, 2 to 2½ hours. Remove the lemongrass and whisk in the coconut milk. Taste the broth for seasoning. Add the lime juice and salt as needed.
  3. While the beef is cooking, make the pickled garlic: In a small nonreactive bowl, combine the garlic and chiles. Heat the vinegar in a small skillet until bubbling. Pour the hot vinegar over the garlic and chiles and let sit for 1 hour.
  4. To serve: Generously divide the curry into serving bowls. Garnish the bowls with little spoonfuls of pickled garlic and lots of chopped scallion and cilantro leaves. Enjoy with jasmine rice or a big piece of grilled naan.

This is an edited extract from Matty Matheson: Home Style Cookery, out now. Text by Matty Matheson with photography by Quentin Bacon. Originally published by Abrams Books.

AU$49.99


Posted on January 20, 2021
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Recipe: Speckled Beetroot Sourdough

There’s no better time to settle in to the ultimate, feel-good luxury of making homemade bread, and this Speckled Beetroot Sourdough is worth settling in to.

Whilst all the recipes in How to Raise a Loaf are suitable for beginners, this recipe should be attempted once you’ve already made your first basic loaf. The recipe for a basic loaf, as well as kneading and folding tutorials, are all included in How to Raise a Loaf. You’ll also find a step-by-step guide to making and using your starter. Head over to Laurence King’s Instagram story here to watch how we make our starter.


Speckled Beetroot Sourdough

With a distinctive appearance and earthy aroma, this is a real show-stopper, and a perfect, hearty accompaniment to winter soups or stews. Beetroots are a rich source of antioxidants, and also give the dough an unforgettable pink colour, which fades in the oven, leaving speckles in a classic open crumb.

Photography by Ida Riveros

Ingredients

· 200g starter
· 10ml (2 tsp) olive oil
· 180ml warm water
· 340g strong white bread flour
· 7.5g (1½ tsp) fine salt
· 150g fresh beetroot, peeled and coarsely grated
· rice flour or semolina, for dusting

1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the starter, olive oil and warm water together until the starter has dissolved.

Photography by Ida Riveros

2. In another bowl, mix the flour with the salt. Add this to the wet mixture and mix well with your hand, then add the grated beetroot and mix until the beetroot is evenly distributed. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and leave to rest for 30 minutes.

3. Wet your hands, then pull, fold and rotate the dough 8—10 times, so that it forms a ball. Leave to rest for 10 minutes.

4. Repeat Step 3 twice so that you’ve worked the dough three times and it has rested for a
hour in total.

5. Dust a proving basket liberally with rice flour or semolina. Wet your fingers, work them around the bottom of the ball of dough and gently transfer it to the proving basket, keeping the seam upwards.

6. Cover with a tea towel and leave in a warm place to prove. Depending on the temperature and the activity of the yeast, it may take three to six hours to gain about 50 per cent in size.

Photography by Ida Riveros

7. When the loaf has proved, preheat the oven to 230°C (210°C fan)/gas mark 8, with a heavy baking tray or baking stone on the middle shelf, and add a source of steam. Turn the loaf out of the proving basket onto the heated surface, cut it twice across the top with a sharp blade or scissors, then place it in the oven.

8. Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 210°C (190°C fan)/gas mark
and bake for another 40 minutes, or until the loaf is done and sounds hollow on the base
when tapped with a fingertip.

9. Leave to cool on a wire rack before eating.

Photography by Ida Riveros

This is a recipe extract from How to Raise a Loaf, published by Laurence King Publishing, $25, available here.


Posted on May 11, 2020