LMD Cookbook Club # 2 – Proper Tomato Salad

LMD Cookbook Club # 2 – Proper Tomato Salad

Things have been very busy here at Lilli May designs…from having a few days without a computer to working on lots of lovely orders in my vintage fabrics like this  gorgeous dress (details can be found on my facebook page) in Vintage Holly Hobbie fabric:

LMD Mich Maxi Vintage HH

So earlier this week I attempted the second round of my resolution to choose a new recipe from one of my many cookbooks and make it. This week I chose another recipe to use up our abundance of home grown tomatoes as they slowly take over our veggie garden!

Here is the photo from the book:

2 Real Tomato Salad

Recipe : Proper Tomato salad

Book : COOK with JAMIE – My Guide to Making You a Better Cook

Author : Jamie Oliver

Estimated Prep Time vs Actual : none given/10 mins

Cook Time : nil

Level : Easy

Ingredients : Mostly pantry items

Appliance/s require : nil

Real Life vs Photo :  4 out of 5.  I used all the same coloured tomatoes no heirloom ones

Result/Taste : 4.5 out of 5

This was a very easy one to make.

2 ingredients

There was also only a few simple ingredients and it was nice also to be able to use the fresh basil from our garden as well. Ingredients include tomatoes (surprisingly right?!), basil, balsamic vinegar, marjoram, garlic, oil and basil.

It was just a matter of roughly chopping the tomatoes and garlic and combining them with the other ingredients in a large bowl.

Photo 24-01-13 8 15 04 PM

The thing I really liked about this recipe, apart from how easy it was to make, was also how Jamie used a very conversational tone in the way he explains the recipe background and then the method. There are so many wonderful recipe’s in this book, which I guess explains why I bought it in the first place, that are clearly explained in plain English.

So here is my finished product and we were all really pleasantly surprised with the tastiness of it. The recipe is easily modified to be made for any number of people so you can make it as a single serve or to serve 10 and not just the 4 serving version in the book. Yes I will be making this one again.

LMD Tomato Salad

I had the husband0 pick out the next recipe that I am making and it is from this same book. It is something that I have long wanted to try to make so I look forward to sharing my experience with you next time.

Did you try anything new this week?

Keep smiling!


LMD Cookbook Club #1 – Chillied Tomato and Garlic Chutney

LMD Cookbook Club #1 – Chillied Tomato and Garlic Chutney

It is so satisfying to know that not only am I making good use, finally, of my cookbooks but I am also expanding my repertoire of things I can make for my family.

As I said last week I plan to select ONE of my cookbooks and I am going to choose ONE recipe that I have NEVER made before and then make it. I also hope to have a side benefit of using some of the kitchen appliances that I have that have long since sat in the cupboard. After I make it I will provide a review here in the hope that it may inspire you to grab out your recipe books and make something similar or you may even want to purchase the cookbook itself and make it.

Without much further ado here we go!

Here is the photo from the book:

Book Chutney

Recipe : Chillied Tomato & Garlic Chutney

Book : Ultimate Slow Cooker

Author : Sara Lewis

Estimated Prep Time vs Actual : 30 mins/30mins

Cook Time : 7-8 hours

Level : Easy

Ingredients : Mostly pantry items

Appliance/s require : Slow Cooker

Real Life vs Photo :  5 out of 5.  Turned out just like the photo

Result/Taste : 4.5 out of 5

Book Cover Wk 1

My main reason for choosing this recipe is the abundance of yummy tomatoes growing in our garden and I needed something that would use a lot of them as we have  a LOT of them. The first step I did when starting this recipe was to go out to our back yard and hand-pick one kilo of fresh yummy ripe tomatoes to bring them inside and start cooking with them! You can’t get fresher than that! 🙂


As you can see, the ingredients include mostly pantry items, I was lucky enough to have all the ingredients on hand – if you don’t cook regularly you may need to buy items like the sultanas, allspice and the cinnamon stick – otherwise it was only tomatoes, apples, capsicums (red peppers) onions, vinegar, sugar, chilli and garlic.

The only part that I thought would be a chore was the peeling of the tomatoes.  There were only a couple of them that ended up being a little difficult. All the others peeled really easy – they were well-ripened so I think this helped. The recipe just stated ‘tomatoes, peeled’. I did not bother with the boiling and dropping in cold water method to peel them – I mean seriously?! Who has time for that!! I also would recommend using fresh tomatoes not canned ones.

For the less experienced cook, they may feel a little confused with some of the instructions – or lack thereof really – example with the capsicum, it just says ‘chopped’ not what type of chop – some may prefer more detail like what size/direction, 1cm chunks etc

Chopped Capsicum

I made only one change to the recipe and that was to only put in half the recommended amount of chilli to see the result and add it all next time if necessary. Other than that it was as simple as put all the ingredients in the slow cooker and putting on the lid.

Slow Cooker Start

Turning it on to high and leaving it for the day for 8 hours. I did stir it a couple of time during this time.

At the end of the cooking time it looked like this and was, as expected, reduced:

Slow Cooker End

I have to say that this is one of the tastiest chutney’s that I have ever tasted! It is full-bodied and chunky and has so many different flavours coming through and is a pleasure to eat. It goes with so much as well even on its own on a crusty bread roll it is lovely – or with peppered pork like in my photo below. I also think with all the chilli added it may be a little hot for some – so if you aren’t sure, add only a small amount and then add more once it is cooked if required. I will definitely be making this again. Yum!

Mich's Chutney

So I hope you enjoyed my first weekly review. If you have any questions let me know. I have the Husbando looking through another of the cookbooks for this weeks recipe and cant wait to see what he picks!
So what new recipe did you try this week? What chutney recipe do you recommend?

Hope to see you back here next week!

Keep smiling!


I was addicted to buying cookbooks and then never using them!

I was addicted to buying cookbooks and then never using them!

Do you have cookbooks you never use? Do you have kitchen appliances that you never/rarely use?

Then read on as we may be able to help each other!

Being a seamstress, it goes without saying that I enjoy making things with my own hands.
I do!
I love to sew. I love to garden. I love a clean house. I love to cook.

It seems I would be well suited to the 1950’s – 1970’s and living in Stepford – but being in absolute bliss to be doing it not because I was being subservient!

So in all my wonderful DIY glory..I still seem to fail slightly in one area. So let me set the scene:

What happens to you when you are out shopping…walking through the shopping mall…gazing in to the shop windows…just strolling…when out of nowhere you are faced with tables and tables of books?

Book Vendor

My reaction? Well, I am instantly drawn to the children’s books and then the cookbooks.

Now you may say ‘there’s nothing wrong with that’. To the outsider, that would seem a fair statement. In reality though, it was wrong for me.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE to get a new cookbook and pour over the pages, mouth salivating at all the wonderful photos and ideas of wonderful things I could make using my little collection of kitchen appliances!!

I used to hand over my money – they were all BARGINS on these tables, or the book man who used to come into the office – then couldn’t wait to get home to look through it.

Once I had flipped through it, thinking ‘yep yep yep I will make the one on page 34, 76 and that yummy dessert on page 123 next week’…I would place it on the shelf next to my other cookbooks. Most likely never to be looked at again.

My Cookbooks

Now the cookbooks on this shelf are a small portion of the ones that I had up until a few weeks ago. I had WAY too many.  I stopped buying them about 18 months ago and we recently had a garage sale and then donated a heap to vinnies (thrift store) as well. So my collection is now more manageable. On those occasions where I was needing a particular recipe to cook, I would most often just google it and find it on-line! LOL Crazy!

So it’s a new year right? Some people make new years resolutions…which I don’t find that helpful usually but this year I am making a NEW HABIT!! You can help and join in too as it is VERY SIMPLE!

So my plan is each week, when I am planning the family meals prior to doing the shopping, I am not just going to go through my current repertoire of recipes that are in my heart and head. I am going to select ONE of my cookbooks and I am going to choose ONE recipe that I have NEVER made before and then make it that week.

Once I have made it, I will provide my review of the recipe here so that you may be inspired to try a similar one – or who knows, you may even have the same cookbook or love it so much you will want to go and buy it!

YOU can also do the same each week, grab one of your cookbooks, pick a recipe, make it and then comment back on my weekly post what you tried and you may inspire me or others to try your recipe out or one similar in a cookbook that we have!

Cooking Mags

Even though I found myself in the supermarket this afternoon, lusting over a cooking magazine (of which was part of my addiction of buying cookbooks – anything with a recipe in it really)…I walked away and left it. I knew that most recipes in there would be, in some form, in one of the books I already have.

To clarify, my new habit will involve – lets call it the LMD Cookbook Club:

1 no more buying new cookbooks – I have enough variety in the ones I have to move to any country in the world and be able to cook at least one of their traditional meals

2 select a minimum of ONE new, previously untried recipe each week and make it

3 post a recipe review of the one I made here on my blog (needing this step, as it will add to my motivation to keep going)

4 check out any ones that you have shared and gain inspiration from you on what type of recipe to look through my books for a similar one

5 hopefully making these new meals will also result in needing to use some of the kitchen appliances a bit more that I have especially the food processor and all its attachments

So this weeks choices, as we have SOOOOOOO many homegrown tomatoes to eat, are these  (yes I am starting off with two this week to catch up for last week) :

Chillied Tomato & Garlic Chutney


Real Tomato Salad

REAL TOMATO SALAD (bit different to the one I usually make)

I look forward to sharing my attempt at these ones which come from two different cookbooks!

So who can relate and who will try this out?

Lets don those aprons and get cooking!!!

Keep smiling!